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ePVision PHD-VRX & VRX2 Owners Thread - Page 66

post #1951 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by jnotgsure View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post

One more, important question though: Who is your cable company?
Time Warner West San Fernando Valley.
Hopefully the guide works, I'll let you know.
Thanks; I asked because I wanted to make sure you would actually have some clear QAM channels to receive at all. Several cable companies have been encrypting all digital channels over the last year.

AFAIK TWC hasn't started down that road yet, so you should get some clear QAM channels from TWC, But if yours is like TWC Dallas, you may not get a lot. I'm not a TWC subscriber but from what I've heard, we just get the locals plus a few others (mostly shopping, infomercials, etc.) in the clear. Everything else is encrypted (and flagged copy-once mad.gif )

It would be hard for any guide service to provide info by clear QAM channel numbers. Cable companies move their channels around quite a bit, and just remap the more stable virtual channel numbers to the corresponding physical channels as they do. And since the virtual channel numbers are what users with cable boxes see, guide services go by the virtual channels rather than the physical ones.

And since most cable companies do not provide PSIP, clear QAM tuners are generally unaware of this mapping; they just show the physical channel numbers and leave it to the user to figure out which channel is which.

For a guide service to work well with clear QAM, the tuner would need to let the user renumber channels manually to match the virtual channel numbers used by the guide - unless the software is smart enough to match on, say, call letters instead of channel numbers. Even then you'd have to look the call letters up on, say, Zap2It and enter them into your tuner manually. And you'd have to update the channel numbers or call letters any time the cable company moves channels around.
post #1952 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithdoor View Post

I would try a new USB Flash Stick remember formatted to FAT32. I have had to reload the firmware with new USB flash stick. Then ever thing work.

Dave

I am going to try your suggestion and use a BRAND NEW USB stick for a firmware reload. I am going to likely stay with the Oct. 2013 firmware, since the latest RC version causes the unit to reboot during recording - this occurred on my original unit, and the one the dealer replaced.

I know you said that you have had luck with the VRX2, with the newest beta firmware. You mentioned you had to reload several times. Is there anything else you did like leaving the unit unplugged for an extended period of time during f/w updating? Any suggestions I will try.

Last night I had several shows set to record on tuner 1 and tuner 2. There were several problems. One of the shows simply didn't record (tuner 2). And also other shows didn't record successfully due to the unit freezing up during recording. At one point I was walking by the unit and noticed that only tuner 1 was recording (when both 1 and 2 should have been recording) . . . so I turned on the TV and could hear the audio for the channel the recorder was supposed to record - with an image that was frozen. The unit had frozn. I couldn't stop the locked-up recording . . . or even power off the unit. I had to unplug from the wall. I've seen this happen before with the first unit.

Another weird thing . . . at one point the recorder was recording to tuner 2 -- but the on-screen data indicated (incorrectly) that tuner 1 was recording.

Since the symptoms I have with this new unit are so similar to the last one, I still wonder if all VRX2's perform this way . . or if I got another from a bunch that were poor.

If a successful firmware flash can do the trick . . . I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Ian
post #1953 of 2203

Hi Dave,

 

I'm new to the forum.  I have the PHD VRX2 with the latest firmware.  Just created an account on Schedules Direct and have set up the VRX2 to download the EPG data.  I understand it may take a few hours the first time.  My question - should I see the guide slowly being populated or does it take 3-4 hours before you see anything in the guide?  I've been downloading for 2 hours and still no information in my guide. I'm not sure the download is actually working.  I was able to enter my username and password, country and postal code no problem.

 

John.

post #1954 of 2203
The first time it took over night. I had a power outage and the PHD VRX2 was taking for ever to down and just sat they so reload the Firmware and had to ever thing all over again and took 5 min. If you turn it off it may not come up????. Mine is working great know after a reload (There maybe a glitch in USB stick).

Dave
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clydester88 View Post

Hi Dave,

I'm new to the forum.  I have the PHD VRX2 with the latest firmware.  Just created an account on Schedules Direct and have set up the VRX2 to download the EPG data.  I understand it may take a few hours the first time.  My question - should I see the guide slowly being populated or does it take 3-4 hours before you see anything in the guide?  I've been downloading for 2 hours and still no information in my guide. I'm not sure the download is actually working.  I was able to enter my username and password, country and postal code no problem.

John.
post #1955 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithdoor View Post

The first time it took over night. I had a power outage and the PHD VRX2 was taking for ever to down and just sat they so reload the Firmware and had to ever thing all over again and took 5 min. If you turn it off it may not come up????. Mine is working great know after a reload (There maybe a glitch in USB stick).

Dave

Thanks for the response.  I finally figured out that the letters in my Canadian postal code were converted to lowercase letters by Schedules Direct and the space was deleted (not obvious as it's displayed in uppercase with a space on the main screen but lowercase with no space on the edit screen).  Anyway, problem solved - guide loaded in 5-10 minutes.  So far, so good.

post #1956 of 2203
Since the PHD-VRX has been discontinued perhaps there might not be any future firmware updates for that product. Its good to see EpVision release two new firmware updates for the PHD-VRX2 in the month of Jan 2014. Firmware update VRX2.243.25.43.RC1 is the latest firmware update for the PHD-VRX2.

PHD-VRX2FirmwareUpgrade-VRX2_243_25_43_RC1.pdf

PHD_VRX2_firmware-VRX2_243_25_43_RC1.zip

I returned my PHD-VRX2 in late December 2013 since the 1080P artifact with the gray horizontal bar issue was unacceptable and an estimated time of fixing that issue could not be provided by EpVision. I noticed that the latest firmware update PDF mentions that “Deep function improvements” have been made. I sent an email to EpVision asking them if the 1080P artifact bug has been fixed in a firmware update. Hopefully they will reply to the email. Both EpVision and I were able to duplicate the gray horizontal bar issue when the PHD-VRX2 was in the 1080P mode. If this 1080P artifact has been fixed I will strongly consider re-purchasing the PHD-VRX2 unit.

EpVision is also planning on VUDU 1080P streaming with a future firmware update to join the current YOUTUBE streaming feature.

I am glad to see EpVision took my advice and made a menu setting to turn on and off the front panel display. I just wish I would have kept my PHD-VRX2 a few more weeks to try out the latest firmware update.

I am very happy that PHD-VRX2 owners now have two electronic program guides to choose from. A free guide for ATSC/QAM channels and a paid 7 day guide for ATSC broadcast channels only. This is perfect for someone that lives in an area with no cable TV service. For $25 a year one can subscribe to a third party program guide. That is only $2.08 a month for the 7 day programming guide for ATSC broadcast channels. However, for people that subscribe to cable TV service they would be better off purchasing a tuner that has cablecard slot. Some cable companies only charge $3.99 a month for a cablecard rental and the program guides offer 14 days or more of free guide data with Windows Media player software. Also the cablecard maps the channels to the exact same channel number and unencrypts the channels that one subscribes too.

A question was asked earlier about the date and time settings. Both the PHD-VRX and PHD-VRX2 Date and Time setting work exactly the same. If the power is lost to the PHD-VRX/PHD-VRX2 and one turns the unit back on to an analog channel the time cannot be set by analog NTSC channel and the “Auto-Update Time NTP (Network)” needs to be selected. Personally, I have found that having both “Auto-Update Time Channel”, and “Auto-Update Time NTP (Network)” is the best option. If both time check boxes are selected in the PHD-VRX/PHD-VRX2, then first the unit will update the time from the Internet, however if the Internet is not active then the PHD-VRX/PHD-VRX2 will update the time from a digital ATSC/QAM channel.
post #1957 of 2203
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Some cable companies only charge $3.99 a month for a cablecard rental
Others charge $2.50 and I believe a few others it may be free.
Quote:
“Deep function improvements”
That could mean anything. confused.gif
post #1958 of 2203
with a cable card do you need the services first or is the only cost is the retail of the card.

Dave
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

Others charge $2.50 and I believe a few others it may be free.
That could mean anything. confused.gif
post #1959 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithdoor View Post

with a cable card do you need the services first or is the only cost is the retail of the card.

Dave

You have to subscribe to the cable TV service first and each cablecard monthly rental costs around $3.99 per cablecard (price varies depending on cable company). All the latest digital cable boxes and HD DVR’s from the cable company also use a cablecard, however the cablecard rental is included in the price of the HD DVR rental. Some cable companies charge as much as $20 a month for a HD DVR rental and a cablecard rental for $3.99 a month is a lot cheaper for those consumers that own a tuner device with a cablecard slot.

In the future, possible 5-10+ years there might be downloadable cablecard security devices instead of a physical cablecard slot.
post #1960 of 2203
UPDATED PHD-VRX2 INFORMATION


In my email communication with EpVision technical support they informed me that the PHD-VRX2 gray horizontal bar issue has not been fixed yet. It is unknown if this issue can be fixed with a firmware update. EpVision is checking with chip makers to see if the chip makers are able to create a software driver modification to eliminate the gray horizontal bar issue that occurs on high-end displays that have a Dot by Dot mode. Displays with Dot by Dot mode matches the input signal to the same number of screen pixels in a 1080i and 1080p signal. There is something wrong with the PHD-VRX/PHD-VRX2 1080P output which does not correctly map the pixels exactly. This issue is noticeable on 50 inch and larger displays with a half inch gray horizontal bar at the bottom of the screen on the PHD-VRX2 and a black letterbox style horizontal bar on the PHD-VRX. According to EpVision this issue only effects certain brands and models of displays. Using a zoom mode on one’s HDTV might hide the 1080P artifact at the cost of not watching the channel at the correct screen ratio.

In the next firmware release for the PHD-VRX2 I was informed that 36bit deep color support will be added to the PHD-VRX2. Currently standard 24 bit color is outputted on the PHD-VRX2. The original PHD-VRX currently supports 36bit deep color.

Also I made the suggestion that the PHD-VRX2 would be a much popular product if the chipset supported the following resolutions (Ideal screen resolution settings should be 480i, 480P,720P, 1080i, 1080P, and a native source direct mode).

Also I asked for a firmware update to support native MPEG-4 in the clear QAM channels instead of just MPEG-2 in the clear QAM channels.

The EpVision PHD-VRX2 could become a high-end tuner for people with high-end projectors and monitors if the 1080P artifact issue is fixed along with the resolution output recommendations are made. Clear QAM MPEG-4 support would also be attractive feature for consumers who subscribe to cable TV service.

I sent an email to EpVision today asking them if they plan on offering any new firmware updates for the discontinued PHD-VRX model. I also mentioned to them that I would like to see the ability to turn off the front LED display on the PHD-VRX and the ability to subscribe to the paid guide on the PHD-VRX would also be ideal. If I hear anything new from EpVision about the old PHD-VRX model I will post the information online.

The following are select word for word quotes from EpVision technical support:

“Thank you for your email.

For VRX2.243.25.43.RC1, we added a function you can turn off and on front panel LED digits.

For next firmware release, we will add 36bit deep color support for PHD-VRX2.

For 1080p horizontal bar, as we mentioned before, it won’t happen on every TVs and most likely can be adjusted from TV itself if horizontal bar occurred. However, if any of this changes or modifications will involve software driver modifications. And this will also involve with chip makers. We are checking with them to see the possibility.

Thanks.

Support Team

ePVision.com”
post #1961 of 2203

I have the VRX2 and a Panasonic Vierra VT30 55".  I get the 1/2" bar at the bottom of the screen in 1080P mode although mine appears more black than grey after calibration.  I hadn't noticed it until I saw this thread.

post #1962 of 2203
Some HDTV’s the horizontal bar is black instead of gray on the PHD-VRX2. I have not tried the PHD-VRX2 after the latest firmware update, it is possible that EpVision programmers might have changed the bar from gray to black in the latest firmware update. I am currently using the original PHD-VRX since the black letterbox bar is less noticeable compared to the gray horizontal bar I was getting on the new PHD-VRX2.
post #1963 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTV1080P24 View Post

Some HDTV’s the horizontal bar is black instead of gray on the PHD-VRX2. I have not tried the PHD-VRX2 after the latest firmware update, it is possible that EpVision programmers changed the bar from gray to black in the latest firmware update. I am currently using the original PHD-VRX since the black letterbox bar is less noticeable compared to the gray horizontal bar I was getting on the new PHD-VRX2.

Yes, I'm using the latest firmware VRX2.243.25.43.RC1.

post #1964 of 2203
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Also I made the suggestion that the PHD-VRX2 would be a much popular product if the chipset supported the following resolutions (Ideal screen resolution settings should be 480i, 480P,720P, 1080i, 1080P, and a native source direct mode).
The VRX supported 480, but it was removed for no apparent reason a moth after it's release, as was analog noise reduction which did work, though he claimed it didn't.
Quote:
Some HDTV’s the horizontal bar is black instead of gray on the PHD-VRX2. I have not tried the PHD-VRX2 after the latest firmware update, it is possible that EpVision programmers might have changed the bar from gray to black in the latest firmware update. I am currently using the original PHD-VRX since the black letterbox bar is less noticeable compared to the gray horizontal bar I was getting on the new PHD-VRX2.
It's interesting that no one noticed this with the VRX after all this time, or at least never mentioned it.
post #1965 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post


Thanks; I asked because I wanted to make sure you would actually have some clear QAM channels to receive at all. Several cable companies have been encrypting all digital channels over the last year.

AFAIK TWC hasn't started down that road yet, so you should get some clear QAM channels from TWC, But if yours is like TWC Dallas, you may not get a lot. I'm not a TWC subscriber but from what I've heard, we just get the locals plus a few others (mostly shopping, infomercials, etc.) in the clear. Everything else is encrypted (and flagged copy-once mad.gif )

It would be hard for any guide service to provide info by clear QAM channel numbers. Cable companies move their channels around quite a bit, and just remap the more stable virtual channel numbers to the corresponding physical channels as they do. And since the virtual channel numbers are what users with cable boxes see, guide services go by the virtual channels rather than the physical ones.

And since most cable companies do not provide PSIP, clear QAM tuners are generally unaware of this mapping; they just show the physical channel numbers and leave it to the user to figure out which channel is which.

For a guide service to work well with clear QAM, the tuner would need to let the user renumber channels manually to match the virtual channel numbers used by the guide - unless the software is smart enough to match on, say, call letters instead of channel numbers. Even then you'd have to look the call letters up on, say, Zap2It and enter them into your tuner manually. And you'd have to update the channel numbers or call letters any time the cable company moves channels around.


So Schedules Direct wont work at all?

Not even for the basic channels which don't seem to change like analog channel 57 AMC?

Not for channel 2.1 CBS, 4.1 ABC, 11.1 FOX, or analog channel 32 ESPN?

 

All I care about is Football and the Walking Dead.

post #1966 of 2203
You may need to setup schedules Direct and check Non-distributed: Personal research
Mine work after I found this out

Dave
Quote:
Originally Posted by jnotgsure View Post


So Schedules Direct wont work at all?
Not even for the basic channels which don't seem to change like analog channel 57 AMC?
Not for channel 2.1 CBS, 4.1 ABC, 11.1 FOX, or analog channel 32 ESPN?

All I care about is Football and the Walking Dead.
post #1967 of 2203
I don't know whether S.D. will work with clear QAM or not. (It should work OK with analog channels.) You'll have to be the guinea pig for us. It's just that It's not obvious how the firmware can match S.D. cable listings to the clear QAM channel numbers, since they won't be the same as either the OTA channel number or the cable co.'s channel numbers.

AFAIK the PHD-VRX2 doesn't let you renumber your channels, but it does let you enter/change call letters, and that might be enough. It's also possible that S.D. will let you renumber the channels in your subscription to match the numbers used by the PHD-VRX2, so you can fix the problem from the other end.

Smithdoor, do you have cable? (I thought you were OTA.)
Edited by JHBrandt - 1/15/14 at 4:31pm
post #1968 of 2203
I am OTA
No I do not have cable

Dave
Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post

I don't know whether S.D. will work with cable (clear QAM) or not. You'll have to be the guinea pig for us. It's just that It's not obvious how the firmware can match S.D. cable listings to the clear QAM channel numbers, since they won't be the same as either the OTA channel number or the cable co.'s channel numbers.

AFAIK the PHD-VRX2 doesn't let you renumber your channels, but it does let you enter/change call letters, and that might be enough. It's also possible that S.D. will let you renumber the channels in your subscription to match the numbers used by the PHD-VRX2, so you can fix the problem from the other end.

Smithdoor, do you have cable? (I thought you were OTA.)
post #1969 of 2203
Thanks; just wanted to clear that up.

Jnotgsure will just have to be the one to try it out for us.
post #1970 of 2203
Good luck
Dave
Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post

Thanks; just wanted to clear that up.

Jnotgsure will just have to be the one to try it out for us.
post #1971 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithdoor View Post

You may need to setup schedules Direct and check Non-distributed: Personal research
Mine work after I found this out

Dave

 

OK so I checked Non-distributed: Personal research, signed up for SD and activated it.

Then I signed in through the vrx2 and hit done and it seems as though it did nothing.

Is there a way to see the progress of the download or to even know if it's actually downloading?
 


Edited by jnotgsure - 1/15/14 at 11:05pm
post #1972 of 2203
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Is there a way to see the progress of the download or to even know if it's actually downloading?
Through a router maybe with no PC's or anything else connected monitoring data transfer through the routers diagnostic (or similar) screen.
post #1973 of 2203
It does not show downloading and it can take from 5 min to 8 hours this may have something to do with SD
The first time I left the PHD VRX2 on over nigh and it work great the next day.
Also check to see if YouTub is working.

Dave
Quote:
Originally Posted by jnotgsure View Post

OK so I checked Non-distributed: Personal research, signed up for SD and activated it.
Then I signed in through the vrx2 and hit done and it seems as though it did nothing.
Is there a way to see the progress of the download or to even know if it's actually downloading?

 
post #1974 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithdoor View Post

If you have a bug try reload the firmware this where I am finding the problems are coming from I do not know if is the USB stick or the other

Dave

Hi, Dave . . .

I think you may be on to something with your observations about the USB stick, in terms of firmware updates for the ePVision product. I recall you mentioning in a post that you suspect that a "brand new" USB stick may work when loading firmware - vs. using a stick which previously had data on it.

As I mentioned, both my original and the replacement VRX2 had so many bugs it was unusable. The second unit had issues right out-of-the-box. Even flashing with the new firmware introduced more and different issues.

But, I decided to take a USB stick I had used before for updating and downgrading the firmware - hoping that reflashing might be the fix. Instead of just placing the f/w files in the root directly of the key, I decided to reformat the card - again to FAT32 formatting. I went AGAIN from the Oct. 2013 original f/w to the newest release candidate. The only thing that I did differently was reformat the card. The original formatting on the card was also FAT32 - but perhaps a new card (or reformatted card) does improve the likelihood of success. I seemed to for me.

IT WORKED!!! The unit now seems to be operating normally. The big issue that I found the new firmware caused with both units was the a lot of rebooting during recording - which made multiple mpg files per show recorded.

Now, the unit doesn't seem to be dropping programs that were properly scheduled -- and other bugs are gone too. I have tested over the last couple of nights - and things were definitely addressed by how the unit took the new firmware (even though it had been installed a few times before and didn't work).

The only thing I notice is that after the unit has finished recording, it doesn't power down -- the power stays on -- with the channel number the tuner is currently on displayed on the front of the unit. Heck, compared to the other issues, this isn't much to worry about.

Thanks again Dave for the firmware (USB stick) idea!!!

Ian
post #1975 of 2203
Quote:

“Thank you for your email. We will continue to support PHD-VRX units and we will release the new firmware very soon. Thanks.

Support Team

ePVision.com”
post #1976 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithdoor View Post

It does not show downloading and it can take from 5 min to 8 hours this may have something to do with SD
The first time I left the PHD VRX2 on over nigh and it work great the next day.
Also check to see if YouTub is working.

Dave

 

OK, I let if go all night, but when I went to the guide this morning, it just listed the channels on the left as it did before, there was no info in the right hand side box.

I set it up again before leaving for work and I will check it out when I get home.

How do I view youtube on it?
 

post #1977 of 2203
Press the button lable net
You may need to reload the firmware I had to and ever thing work great it took only 5 min

Dave
Quote:
Originally Posted by jnotgsure View Post

OK, I let if go all night, but when I went to the guide this morning, it just listed the channels on the left as it did before, there was no info in the right hand side box.
I set it up again before leaving for work and I will check it out when I get home.
How do I view youtube on it?

 
post #1978 of 2203
Thread Starter 
Quote:
We will continue to support PHD-VRX units and we will release the new firmware very soon.
Sounds as a typical corporate 'canned answer". The "very soon" must of been used a dozen times regarding the pay Guide. Does this "support" include the pay Guide??
post #1979 of 2203
Thread Starter 
teeger;
All the previous times, were you using the 1st download of the firmware? This last time, it was a fresh download?
It also may be not a corrupt flash, but remnants were left over from the previous flash which is probably why they want a full power cycle.
post #1980 of 2203
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

teeger;
All the previous times, were you using the 1st download of the firmware? This last time, it was a fresh download?
It also may be not a corrupt flash, but remnants were left over from the previous flash which is probably why they want a full power cycle.

I had downloaded the firmware a second time - but I had tried it (the second download of both the original and RC) a couple of times before the success using a formatted USB. I was told by ePVision to remove the cord from the wall (not just turn off the power bar) in order to drain any residual data. This I did, and left the unit unplugged for a few mins. each time, since I was really hoping that SOMETHING was going to work to fix the issues.

It's possible that it's a coincidence, but it does seem strange that the only real difference between the last few times I flashed the DVR and the one time IT WORKED was with a reformatted USB stick.

Ian
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