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Hdhomerun is driving me crazy! Looking for a different tuner. Any recommendations?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Bought a couple of HDHomeRun Duals last month for my new HTPC setup and they work beautifully aside from the fact that they can't receive my local CBS or ABC channels without hiccuping every 30 seconds. Signal is 100% on both channels. Silcondust told me it's a signal issue and I'm on my own. I have 5 other ATSC tuners in this house connected to the same antenna and they have no problems receiving these channels, so I just don't get it. After weeks of tweaking, fiddling, and pulling hair I think my only option here is to dump the HomeRuns for a different tuner setup.

Thinking of just getting a bunch of USB tuners since they seem to be the least troublesome according to reviews I've read. My only concern is, would the PQ be the same as the HomeRun? And what is everyone else using around here?
post #2 of 16
I use the HDHomerun. Currently using the HDHR3CC. Was using the HDHR2. The HDHR3 is more lenient in signal fluctuation compared to the HDHR2. I assume the upcoming HDHR4 will be even more signal friendly.
post #3 of 16
Do you require external tuners or can you go with internal PCI-e cards? I've got both the HDHomeRun Dual and a pair of Hauppauge WinTC-HVR-2250 ATSC tuners and I prefer the Hauppage tuners. I've also used the AverMedia A188 Duet tuners with some degree of success.

Every USB tuner I've tried in the past has been at the mercy of the USB bus or external powered hub. If you have multiple USB tuners you should really use a powered hub rather than tax the internal USB bus to provide power to them. The only problem is that USB tuners have a nasty habit of dropping off the grid every so often, requiring that you rerun WMC setup to get them recognized again. Otherwise, they work just fine. The Hauppauge 950Q and the HP USB tuner (a rebadged 950Q) are both excellent USB tuners. The (AverMedia?) VolarMax USB tuner is also an excellent choice.

Picture quality from any digital tuner should be exactly the same since it's all digital. You either get the signal or you don't. If the signal is too weak or too strong you'll probably get some digital artifacts like pixelisation. The main difference between tuners is how sensitive they are to picking up distant signals. Some are also better at rejecting multipath interference.
post #4 of 16
Network issues can cause dropouts and pixellation too.
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by captain_video View Post

Do you require external tuners or can you go with internal PCI-e cards? I've got both the HDHomeRun Dual and a pair of Hauppauge WinTC-HVR-2250 ATSC tuners and I prefer the Hauppage tuners. I've also used the AverMedia A188 Duet tuners with some degree of success.

Every USB tuner I've tried in the past has been at the mercy of the USB bus or external powered hub. If you have multiple USB tuners you should really use a powered hub rather than tax the internal USB bus to provide power to them. The only problem is that USB tuners have a nasty habit of dropping off the grid every so often, requiring that you rerun WMC setup to get them recognized again. Otherwise, they work just fine. The Hauppauge 950Q and the HP USB tuner (a rebadged 950Q) are both excellent USB tuners. The (AverMedia?) VolarMax USB tuner is also an excellent choice.

Picture quality from any digital tuner should be exactly the same since it's all digital. You either get the signal or you don't. If the signal is too weak or too strong you'll probably get some digital artifacts like pixelisation. The main difference between tuners is how sensitive they are to picking up distant signals. Some are also better at rejecting multipath interference.

 

 

Thank you! Glad to hear tuner brand/interface shouldn't affect PQ. That was a big concern of mine. I can do PCIe, and  I have thought about the A188, but the reports of it disappearing randomly worry me. That's the last thing I need is another headache like that. I'll look into the 2250 though.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TornadoTJ View Post

Network issues can cause dropouts and pixellation too.

 

How I wish it was! That's something I could fix. Silicondust looked at my logs and said it's definitely a signal issue. I replaced my antenna, relocated said antenna, replaced coax cables, tried new power supplies, nothing helped. Frustrated and tired of throwing money at it...

post #6 of 16
Avermedia Duet A188.
post #7 of 16
I had a similar issue once with my original HDHR Dual and it turned out to be the power supply. Worked fine on QAM channels but I had one OTA channel that was un-watchable even though it had a stronger signal that most of the other ones.
post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Sollars View Post

I had a similar issue once with my original HDHR Dual and it turned out to be the power supply. Worked fine on QAM channels but I had one OTA channel that was un-watchable even though it had a stronger signal that most of the other ones.
I had heard that was an issue with the earlier models. I bought a couple of used HDHR's a while back and the seller included new wall warts that he got from SiliconDust.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Symbios View Post

I have thought about the A188, but the reports of it disappearing randomly worry me. That's the last thing I need is another headache like that. I'll look into the 2250 though.
I never used the A188 for long enough periods to say if it was ever a problem for me, but my 2250's have been very reliable.
post #9 of 16

I've been using the Duet for years... started on XP & MediaPortal, now Win 7, MediaPortal.  YES, I also have a Prime and a Dual working flawlessly via WMC.  As far as the Duet it can be sensitive to power cycling (as is my ATi HDTV-Wonder).  Whenever I find myself having to cycle power I'll check either in the MP TV-Server, or more directly, Device Manager to see if the A188 is in there... if not, I'll have to do a shutdown, wait a minute and power up which usually restores it.  So, the moral of the story is don't cycle power which I don't - my HTPC runs 24/7 (on a SmartUPS) and I have the 4 x 2TB HDDs power down after a couple hours as does the display (to save some power).  All in all I've only had to do this maybe a couple times a year, so not a real concern and mine's an early model as well.  I hate to see you dump the SD - although I appreciate your frustration.

post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzo90017 View Post

Avermedia Duet A188.

I've just started creating a solution for my home, media server and xbox extender setup went well. Next phase is starting a HTPC build, which cannot share the internal tuners on the Duet (I want a client-server solution to all displays) so I grabbed a HDHomeRun Dual HDHR3. While I liked the convenience of having tuners open to the network I received much better coverage with the Duet, the Dual was returned.

Other than the initial driver install and BSODs. The Avermedia hasn't given me any problems.
post #11 of 16

MediaPortal allows Clients to share the Server's tuners... I can watch any tuner, any recorded TV show, any movie on any of my clients. 

post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by captain_video View Post

I never used the A188 for long enough periods to say if it was ever a problem for me, but my 2250's have been very reliable.
I always had issues with my 2250 where it would stop responding after a few days of use. It would only happen if I used both tuners though. I would end up having to power cycle to get the 2250 to respond. I ended up only configuring one tuner and leaving the other one unused. It wasn't much of an issue since I also have 5 other tuners configured in the machine. Granted, it's been years since I've even attempted to use the both tuners on the 2250 so I don't know if newer drivers ever fixed that issue.

HDHRs did have a batch of bad wall warts with the first gen models. They offered free replacements for the bad ones and they have sinced used different power supplies on the newer gen models.
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by vladd View Post

I always had issues with my 2250 where it would stop responding after a few days of use. It would only happen if I used both tuners though. I would end up having to power cycle to get the 2250 to respond. I ended up only configuring one tuner and leaving the other one unused. It wasn't much of an issue since I also have 5 other tuners configured in the machine. Granted, it's been years since I've even attempted to use the both tuners on the 2250 so I don't know if newer drivers ever fixed that issue.

HDHRs did have a batch of bad wall warts with the first gen models. They offered free replacements for the bad ones and they have sinced used different power supplies on the newer gen models.
That's probably something unique to your setup. I've had issues with tuners in the past, but it was always related to USB models and not PCI-e tuners. I'd try using them with the current drivers and see if fixes the problem.
post #14 of 16
Andrew thanks for the tip on MediaPortal, I'll check it out.
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by captain_video View Post

That's probably something unique to your setup. I've had issues with tuners in the past, but it was always related to USB models and not PCI-e tuners. I'd try using them with the current drivers and see if fixes the problem.
That's not outside the realm of possibility. Another is the last time I had both tuners enabled, Vista had just been released. I never tried using both tuners with Win7. I just build a new server but I haven't installed my PCIe tuners in it yet. When I do, I'll configure both tuners on the 2250 and see how it does.

@Nethawk, NextPVR will also allow you to configure tuners on your server and stream LiveTV to any of your clients. NextPVR also allows you to use XBMC as a client. I believe MediaPortal does as well.
post #16 of 16
Maybe the problem is with Vista. Both of mine work great under Win 7.
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