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SA 8300 HD Tips & Tricks -- SARA - Page 285

post #8521 of 8829
Although I believe that the PQ on my sets are very good, out of curiosity, I just checked my levels from my two 8300hdc boxes (Comcast).

On box 1 (Panasonic 50V10, plasma), HD channels: QAM...+15, FDC...0, RDC...+45; SD channels: FDC...), RDC...+45.

On box 2 (Panasonic 32LX700), HD channels: QAM...+5 to +8, FDC...), RDC...54; SD channels: FDC...0, RDC...54.

Interestingly, Box 1/QAM was +15 and was in a different highlighted color than the other levels. Probably showing that this level was at the upper level??? Also, noted a difference for RDC between box 1 and box 2, +45 and +54, respectively. Should I be concerned about any of these observations?
post #8522 of 8829
Thread Starter 
The highlight means it is out of the normally acceptable range. AFIAK, these numbers don't have anything to do with PQ. They normally identify areas to check if you are having issues like marco-blocking, audio/video dropouts, etc. I'm actually surprised the box 1 DVR is not giving you problems with a +15. Is there by chance a splitter on that line before it gets to the box?
post #8523 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubleDAZ View Post

The highlight means it is out of the normally acceptable range. AFIAK, these numbers don't have anything to do with PQ. They normally identify areas to check if you are having issues like marco-blocking, audio/video dropouts, etc. I'm actually surprised the box 1 DVR is not giving you problems with a +15. Is there by chance a splitter on that line before it gets to the box?

I thought that the highlighting indicated that something wasn't within normal range. No splitter before the Box 1 TV, but there is a Comcast booster in the attic and I do have 5 TVs in the house. Only "problem" that my exist with box1 is that if the TV starts with a DVR recording (happens when I shut TV/Cable off while watching something via DVR), the TV when it first goes on will show what looks like a quick flash, or two, of the recording, then the recording comes on in Pause...but after I click Play, all is well.
post #8524 of 8829
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by flycaster View Post

I thought that the highlighting indicated that something wasn't within normal range.

Quote:


The highlight means it is out of the normally acceptable range.

Ok, you tell me what the difference is between those 2 statements, yours and mine.

Quote:


No splitter before the Box 1 TV, but there is a Comcast booster in the attic and I do have 5 TVs in the house.

Could be Comcast needs to check the levels from the booster, but if you're not having audio/video problems, you know that old adage, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

Quote:


Only "problem" that my exist with box1 is that if the TV starts with a DVR recording (happens when I shut TV/Cable off while watching something via DVR), the TV when it first goes on will show what looks like a quick flash, or two, of the recording, then the recording comes on in Pause...but after I click Play, all is well.

Sounds like you have the General Settings/Viewer: Power ON options set to Last Channel. If that happens to be the DVR channel, this is normal. You have to press Play to restart playing the recording.
post #8525 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubleDAZ View Post

Ok, you tell me what the difference is between those 2 statements, yours and mine.

Could be Comcast needs to check the levels from the booster, but if you're not having audio/video problems, you know that old adage, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." Sounds like you have the General Settings/Viewer: Power ON options set to Last Channel. If that happens to be the DVR channel, this is normal. You have to press Play to restart playing the recording.
.

Only reiterating for myself so that I understand what I am talking about.

Agreed

You are most likely right about my setting. But I'll leave it as the flashing doesn't bother me now that I know it is normal.
post #8526 of 8829
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by flycaster View Post

Only reiterating for myself so that I understand what I am talking about.

Got it!

Quote:


You are most likely right about my setting. But I'll leave it as the flashing doesn't bother me now that I know it is normal.

FWIW, I just changed my settings to see what happens and I don't get any flash. Mine just comes on the DVR playback channel as a black screen until I press Play. I am connected via Component though and my HDTV is CRT-based, so that might be the difference.
post #8527 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubleDAZ View Post

I am connected via Component though and my HDTV is CRT-based, so that might be the difference.


I'm connected via hdmi, and that is probably the difference.
post #8528 of 8829
I know this might be a difficult question to answer, but does anyone know what hdmi colorspace these boxes output?

YcbCr? Or RGB?
post #8529 of 8829
I did some experimenting and connected the optical digital output directly to my Sony receiver and kept the HDMI video connection to the Sony KDL-40VE5. I reset the audio output of SA8300 STB to "Digital" putput instead of HDMI. (Originally I had the composite audio output of Sony LCD patched to the Sony receiver. I had attempted to use the Sony LCD optical output but there was an audio sync problem.) The resulting audio signal was a lot clearer, the 5.1 receiver did a much better job than the Sony LCD tv. The audio drop outs were minimized.
However I now believe the problem is with Comcast signal. A few days later I experienced a total video "freeze" and audio drop-out on one of the digital channels which lasted for 30 min. Switched to the equivalent "analog" channel and problem disappeared. Comcast still appears to be having problems in the area.
post #8530 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by yukon04 View Post

I did some experimenting and connected the optical digital output directly to my Sony receiver and kept the HDMI video connection to the Sony KDL-40VE5. I reset the audio output of SA8300 STB to "Digital" putput instead of HDMI. (Originally I had the composite audio output of Sony LCD patched to the Sony receiver. I had attempted to use the Sony LCD optical output but there was an audio sync problem.) The resulting audio signal was a lot clearer, the 5.1 receiver did a much better job than the Sony LCD tv. The audio drop outs were minimized.
However I now believe the problem is with Comcast signal. A few days later I experienced a total video "freeze" and audio drop-out on one of the digital channels which lasted for 30 min. Switched to the equivalent "analog" channel and problem disappeared. Comcast still appears to be having problems in the area.

I have the same setup between my STB,Yamaha (no HDMI input) and TV (Panasonic V10): optical from STB to Yamaha and HDMI from STB to TV, STB set to Digital, no sound from TV, 5.1 Surround sound from Yamaha. Only problem with thius setup is that I can't listen to music from the STB while the TV is off. Here's what happens: All components are on, choose a music station channel, get sound from Yamaha, turn TV off, within about 2-4 seconds, no more music. If I use component cables from STB to TV, then there is no problem. It seems that the using HDMI screws up the communication between the STB and the Yamaha when TV is shut off.
post #8531 of 8829
My 8300 crashed yesterday. It had been acting cranky- shaky screens for about a day. Then it just stopped and the display on the box started a long- maybe 15 minutes- count down. Numbers and letters. When it got to zero it went into a reboot and in a few minutes was fine.

My question is what did it do? Defrag?
post #8532 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGA$$TV View Post

My 8300 crashed yesterday. It had been acting cranky- shaky screens for about a day. Then it just stopped and the display on the box started a long- maybe 15 minutes- count down. Numbers and letters. When it got to zero it went into a reboot and in a few minutes was fine.

My question is what did it do? Defrag?

I think it was downloading the SARA software again. I have seen the countdown several times. If the DVR software gets corrupted it will download the same SARA software version to correct the corrupted software. If the DVR determines there is a new SARA software version it will download the new SARA software version, this usually happens when you get a different DVR from the cable company that has older SARA software. Most of the time, the cable company will initiate the download of new SARA software.
post #8533 of 8829
So, today I'm watching a program that I recorded during the night "F1 Qualifying".
Then the program suddenly halted and the 8300 powered off with no display.
I had to turn the AC off and re-boot to get it back up and now it runs fine.
Strange, very strange.
post #8534 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by flycaster View Post

I have the same setup between my STB,Yamaha (no HDMI input) and TV (Panasonic V10): optical from STB to Yamaha and HDMI from STB to TV, STB set to Digital, no sound from TV, 5.1 Surround sound from Yamaha. Only problem with thius setup is that I can't listen to music from the STB while the TV is off. Here's what happens: All components are on, choose a music station channel, get sound from Yamaha, turn TV off, within about 2-4 seconds, no more music. If I use component cables from STB to TV, then there is no problem. It seems that the using HDMI screws up the communication between the STB and the Yamaha when TV is shut off.

Did you reset your STB audio output to "Digital" from HDMI? With this setup, I have the capability of only turning on the STB and the Sony receiver. I can listen to the Comcast music channels without the TV turned on.
post #8535 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by yukon04 View Post

Did you reset your STB audio output to "Digital" from HDMI? With this setup, I have the capability of only turning on the STB and the Sony receiver. I can listen to the Comcast music channels without the TV turned on.

Yes, with stb to TV via hdmi, and opt dig from STB to Receiver, I did change the stb from hdmi to digital, but i can not listen to the TV music channels with the TV off. Once again, I have a Panasonic V10 and I believe that when the TV goes off, something goes screwy via the hdmi communications, and the stb won't send a sound signal out. I could be that the TV is interfering witht he interface.
post #8536 of 8829
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by flycaster View Post

Yes, with stb to TV via hdmi, and opt dig from STB to Receiver, I did change the stb from hdmi to digital, but i can not listen to the TV music channels with the TV off. Once again, I have a Panasonic V10 and I believe that when the TV goes off, something goes screwy via the hdmi communications, and the stb won't send a sound signal out. I could be that the TV is interfering witht he interface.

The TV is not turning the signal to the HDMI output competely off so as far as the STB is concerned there is still a connection there. Unfortunately, there is not enough of a signal to complete the HDCP handshake and the STB gets stuck on an HDCP error. The solution is to switch to Component or get an HDMI switcher that will cut all power when the TV is off.
post #8537 of 8829
I experienced a new HDMI issue last night which appears to occur with the SA8300 STB and my new Sony KDL-40VE5. When I switch the HDMI input from the STB to another input other than another HDMI input such as the VCR (composite input), it works fine, but when I attempt to switch back, I only restore audio and not video. If I cycle the tv power, video is restored. I will try a different cable. Only appears to occur with HDMI. Phillips 42" LCD has not issues with switching inputs - may be a Sony issue.
post #8538 of 8829
Does anyone know if there is a way to make the guide/menu show up full screen (i.e. in HD)? I just received mine a few days ago and would love to have the guide fill the entire HD widescreen.

Thanks for your help!
post #8539 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by figgynewton View Post

Does anyone know if there is a way to make the guide/menu show up full screen (i.e. in HD)? I just received mine a few days ago and would love to have the guide fill the entire HD widescreen.

Thanks for your help!

The guide/menu is not in HD. The first post in this thread has a lot of good information about SARA. To go to the first post, click on the SARA link in my signature.
post #8540 of 8829
Canadian Cable Company Videotron upgraded from SARA 1.89.25.8001 to SARA 1.92.10.1.

Here are some of the new features that are in the new version:

1) 15 minute interval jumps.

2) The blue screen "Scientific Atlanta" boot screen has been replaced with a black "Cisco" screen.

3) Relative Time displayed since the start of the program during fast forward.

4) Multiple bookmarks so you can resume any recording from where you left off. This is also in SARA 1.91.x.y.

5) New color UI/schemes all have black text on a darkish color for the program info in the TV guide, which is hard to read. The recorded programs/scheduled recordings lists still have the old (easier to read) UI.

Click the following link to go to the digital home thread about the upgrade. Most of the people who posted had problems with the new SARA version and had to cold reboot several times. Some lost their recordings. Some had to reschedule recordings. Some even had Videotron download their previous SARA version.

NOTE: The first post is wrong about a new widescreen GUI.

http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/show...=121986&page=1


I didn't see any mention of the SARA 1.91.x.y feature "Jumps back when you hit play while fast forwarding in speeds 3 and 4."

The "Recorded show info when hitting the info button during playback" feature does not work in Videotron's SARA 1.92.10.1 version.
post #8541 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by RussB View Post

Canadian Cable Company Videotron upgraded from SARA 1.89.25.8001 to SARA 1.92.10.1.

Do you know if this if only for the new 8642HD or does it apply to the 8300HD as well? In Ontario, Rogers uses the new version on the 8642HD but has not upgraded from the 1.89.x.y on the 8300HD.
post #8542 of 8829
In Montreal (Videotron cable) 8300HDs were also updated to 1.92.10.1. The bug fixes and multiple bookmarks are nice to have, and the drives now spin down properly when the unit is off. But the new UI is pretty horrible. Scrolling left/right in the guide is noticably slower. Also when you're fast forwarding to find something in a recording, you can no longer remove the progress bar by pressing exit. Instead you have a much fatter progress bar that blocks a lot of the picture and it comes right back if you press exit. Overall another botched update.
post #8543 of 8829
This forum has tons of great information. I need an answer and I assume it's in this thread, but 200+ pages of info...rrrggghhh.

We just got a 60" Mitsubishi DLP. Thinking that HDMI is the godsend of video, also purchassed a pair of HDMI cables...one for the Blu-Ray, one for the 8300HD box. The difference on the Blu-Ray is night and day. But why oh why does the SA8300HD cable box need up to 5 seconds to view the guide? Is ther a work-around?

Sorry for probably a repost of somethings that's been hashed over before.

Again, thanks for a very informative forum. This must make the 6th I've become a member of.

Rick
post #8544 of 8829
The only way I can live with HDMI from the 8300HD is to set it to output a fixed 1080i resolution. Switching resolutions causes an HDMI handshake that can take several seconds on some displays. That could be your issue too.

You'll also find that component video looks essentially identical to HDMI, and doesn't have the switching delay.
post #8545 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by kriktsemaj99 View Post

The only way I can live with HDMI from the 8300HD is to set it to output a fixed 1080i resolution. Switching resolutions causes an HDMI handshake that can take several seconds on some displays. That could be your issue too.

You'll also find that component video looks essentially identical to HDMI, and doesn't have the switching delay.

Thanks for the reply.
I guess I can live with component cables. I was hoping to end some of the clutter behind the screen. I'll try setting the resolution to a fixed 1080i and see if that changes anything.

Thanks, again.
post #8546 of 8829
The first post in this thread has a lot of good information about SARA. DoubleDAZ has put in a lot of effort over the years to keep it updated.
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickself3 View Post

This forum has tons of great information. I need an answer and I assume it's in this thread, but 200+ pages of info...rrrggghhh.

We just got a 60" Mitsubishi DLP. Thinking that HDMI is the godsend of video, also purchassed a pair of HDMI cables...one for the Blu-Ray, one for the 8300HD box. The difference on the Blu-Ray is night and day. But why oh why does the SA8300HD cable box need up to 5 seconds to view the guide? Is ther a work-around?

Sorry for probably a repost of somethings that's been hashed over before.

Again, thanks for a very informative forum. This must make the 6th I've become a member of.

Rick
post #8547 of 8829
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RussB View Post

The first post in this thread has a lot of good information about SARA. DoubleDAZ has put in a lot of effort over the years to keep it updated.

Might be a good time to mention that I will be converted to Passport sometime this year, so I don't know what will happen to the First Post when that change takes place. I will still be here on AVS, but someone else with SARA will have to monitor changes that need to be made and get them to me so I can make the edits.
post #8548 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by kriktsemaj99 View Post

The only way I can live with HDMI from the 8300HD is to set it to output a fixed 1080i resolution. Switching resolutions causes an HDMI handshake that can take several seconds on some displays. That could be your issue too.

You'll also find that component video looks essentially identical to HDMI, and doesn't have the switching delay.

Everytime I switch channels with a different resolution my tv looses synch or something because the picture zooms in and to the right. Only way to fix it is to switch sources on the tv then back to the hdmi input with the box to re-acquire the signal. If I lock my resolution this should fix my problem.

How do you lock the resolution to 1080i?
post #8549 of 8829
Quote:
Originally Posted by petem23 View Post

How do you lock the resolution to 1080i?

In settings find Picture Format and set it to Fixed (you probably have it set to Auto HDMI right now). Then you can also select which fixed resolution you want somewhere else in the menu (can't remember the exact item right now).

You might notice slightly worse picture quality on standard def channels when the box converts to 1080i instead of the TV, but for me it's worth it.
post #8550 of 8829
I have a Cisco/SA Explorer 8240HDC DVR (same as 8300, but digital only.) It has developed a frustrating sound drop out problem. Once in a while while watching a recorded program or a live program through the DVR's tuner, the audio will cut out. Usually, it returns after a few seconds. Sometimes I must turn the DVR off then back on. Sometimes I must reboot the DVR. Thinking it might be an HDMI problem, I tried turning the TV off/on, and tried disconnecting/reconnecting the HDMI cable. No luck. Following my latest DVR reboot, the problem has not reappeared for several days.

Is this a common 8240/8300 failure? Anybody know the cause? Thanks! If it is of any help, it is connected to a Sony Bravia TV.

[BTW, I browsed through 100+ pages of threads, but did not catch any earlier thread of this problem. My apologies in advance if I missed something.]
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