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Sony DHG-HDD250/500: Official Thread - Page 849

post #25441 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by speedlaw View Post

I just got the same Sony Support reply from Emily.
possibly we will finally get the Secret Squirrel command for "show clock set".
I also sent a polite email to Rovi reminding them that I relied upon the good faith of "TV Guide", a name I grew up with, in purchasing the unit. (I really did !). I asked them if they could patch their software or give out a patch for a clockset.
We shall see- I would think that Rovi, as successor to TV Guide, is under contract to Sony, but for how long ? This we don't know, but I would think that the licensing agreements and obligations have to be there somewhere. is there a sunset ? Sony quietly supports the HDD if they have parts, even though it is now off the website. (darn ! we built them too well !)

Same email from Emily too. From Rovi on a listing loss:
"
Dear Joe,

Good to hear your listings are back. We regret to inform you that it is true that the broadcast data will only be supported through April 2013.

Sincerely,

CE Technical Support
Rovi
"
post #25442 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jed1 View Post

Sony does not pay a continueing fee to Rovi for TVGOS they pay a one time fee for each version they decide to use. In the case of the DHG it uses version 8 and was has a guide build date of 2004. That is how long ago Sony paid for the license for the DHG..

My point was that after that, Sony did pay for another license (one time fee) for the version used by, for example, my XBR TV. So, there was money flowing from Sony to Rovi after the DHG. And in terms of the data, DHG and my XBR use the same.
post #25443 of 29213
The last time I used my main deck was Saturday. There was nothing on the 'ad' screen regarding this.
I found out about all of this about an hour ago through a e-mail message from Amazon (no less) to a review on the CM 7000. rolleyes.gif

Here is what I found out shortly after the bomb was dropped. A 2nd bomb:

My local PBS affiliate has already pulled the equipment and sent it back to Rovi last Friday.
They received a e-mail from PBS telling affiliates to pull Rovi's equipment ASAP and send it to them. The email from PBS was dated October 31st.


The only solution is contacting Sony. I feel it is a utter waste of time to bother with Rovi. This action is exactly what a typical corporation does just before they declare bankruptcy by closing the doors without notice to employees and customers. It has happened time in and time out.
Sony's quick solution would be to enable a Guide with blank time slots, replacing the current "No Listings" so one could do a VCR style manual recording. As far as any actual 'Guide', I can't see that happening due to the age of this and the outdated platform. And, of course the limited ownership.

Have said that, calling, but better off writing to Sony is the only hope. A written letter carries far more weight that a silly e-mail that usually gets ignored or just deleted.

That Sony forum already had a thread started on the subject here' at the bottom of the main page;
https://forum.sel.sony.com/viewtopic.php?f=34&t=15646&p=42468#p42468
Edited by videobruce - 11/8/12 at 12:43pm
post #25444 of 29213
Looking through the Sony eSupport website which I did call and had a case opened with a file number. It got bumped up to a 2nd tier. I did state that this has already happened, no rumor or speculation;
1-239-768-7547
http://esupport.sony.com/US/p/contact-relation.pl?

Their corporate information;
https://news.sel.sony.com/en/corporate_information/executive_bios?CSRT=7317315661636450239
http://www.sony.com/SCA/outline/electronics.shtml

It seems President Ryoji Chubachi, COO Phil Molyneux and Executive VP Michael Fasulo would be the choices to whom letters should go.

Problem is where to write? One says NY, the other California;
http://www.sony.com/faq.shtml#link12
http://ecorporateoffices.com/SonyElectronicsInc-2316

.
Edited by videobruce - 11/8/12 at 1:17pm
post #25445 of 29213
I have been told by two different sources this year that Sony does not do any in house work on their consumer electronics. Everything, including design and engineering, has be outsourced to contractors. One of the biggest contractors they use is Foxconn. I wonder what engineering team will be looking into this as they will have to arrange a contract to do this work. Sony is basically just like Vizio. The only consumer electronics manufacturer that does all their engineering, design , and manufacturing is Panasonic, but they are in financial trouble themselves.

I don't think Rovi is going bankrupt because they make a lot of money from the cable companies that use their IPG guides. TVGOS is a throw back before the internet as it was the first viable way to get guide data to the consumers home. I had the first version of TVGOS embedded in an RCA TV that I bought in 1997. There was no guides in cable boxes at that time and I thought it was real cool to have because the only reliable source for guide data was the TVGuide magazine. The cable companies used to report their lineup changes to the magazine and then they would update the database using that information. The lineup problems starting in the early part of the last decade when cable boxes started to have guides and the TVGuide magazine lost a lot of subscribers so everything fell behind. Also Gemstar started having financial difficulties at the same time and then they put themselves up for sale. This caused the change over to digital to fall way behind and wasn't really addressed until Rovi bought Gemstar. The original host stations was the ABC networks. That changed to PBS maybe around 2001. The original version of TVGOS in that RCA is still working yet. I apologize for the trip down memory lane but as you can see I have been at this from the beginning and I admit I am going to have a hard time seeing it end.
post #25446 of 29213
post #25447 of 29213
The key seems to be getting the available guide information from the internet to the non-internet capable HDD units. How would one go about doing this, assuming it is possible? I note references to WMC, but am not really clear about how to implement that---assume it means having a small computer dedicated to that task. Does anyone have details as to how to implement, or whether it would really work?
post #25448 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by slowbiscuit View Post

This is completely false - MS still supports WMC as it a component of Windows 7 and 8 and support for those systems will continue until 2020 and beyond. They have stopped new dev on WMC but they still support (and provide patches and guide data) for it as part of Windows.
For people saying they want to start a class action against Sony, get real - this is a 7+ year old product and Sony is under no obligation to provide guide data or any other updates for however long you feel like they should. You didn't pay separately for guide service and you can't seriously expect them to provide an update for an ancient product in the CE world. They're going to be bricked, get over it.
Start looking into Tivo or WMC as an alternative, stay far away from the Channel Master and DTVPal products IMO. Used Tivo HDs w/lifetime subs can be had as cheaply as $250 or so on fleabay, WMC PCs can be built for not much more than that ($3-400). And you won't pay extra for guide data on either.

I worried that my trusty DHG might bite the dust and put together a very small form factor HTPC using a mini-itx board and the HD-HomeRun dual OTA tuner that connects to my router so any PC in the house can access TV. Debated on using MythTV (Linux), Win7 or Win8 with it's metro interface. XBMC maybe an option in the future as well. None of these options require paying for a guide. If you get Win8 Pro before the end of January you can get them to e-mail you a free product key for WMC to save the $10. Apparently it's only a $10 add-on for Win8 basic.

http://www.engadget.com/2012/10/26/microsoft-free-media-center-upgrade-for-windows-8-pro/

I went with a Win8 upgrade as I got a deal, but it doesn't load straight to WMC; otherwise works fine after I got some driver issues resolved. It is much faster to boot then Win7, especially on a regular hard drive. I happened to have an older unused WMC remote and IR receiver that now have a purpose in life.
post #25449 of 29213
For the long term owners in this thread and have a handle on corportae communication, take a look at this draft of my letter to Sony's president. Yes, no, maybe? Additions?;
Quote:
Mr. Ryoji Chubachi
President Sony Electronics
550 Madison Avenue,
New York, NY, 10022

Re: TVGOS data from Rovi Corp. discontinued


Mr. Chubachi,

First, I hope this letter gets directed to you or at least your office as had two different addresses to write to. This and one in San Diego.

I am a owner of two of your DVR's. Models DHG-HDD250 and the DHG-HDD500.
October 31st Rovi corporation sent out e-mails to PBS informing them to disconnect Rovi's equipment and return the equipment to them. Around November 5 2012, within the space reserved for ads, there was an announcement stating starting November 1st 2012 Rovi will start to terminate service across the country and fully ending service March 31 2013.

Due to the design of these DVR's, this will make them useless, as no recordings can take place since it was never thought out to provide a manual option to setup recordings VCR style. I understand these were designed in 2005 and before, but both of my units have preformed with little issue other than some missing data every so often.

I understand it's not within Sony's control what Rovi Corporation did, but the shortcoming of this DVR is.

I am requesting a solution from Sony as a firmware update to at least enable a manual clock setting and manual program recording without Guide data being present. I also request the investigation of the possibility of using other sources for data for a program Guide of any type, including a paid subscription. I understand that would be a tall order, but I want to at least suggest the possibility.

Thank you for your time.


Sincerely,
post #25450 of 29213
Quote:
I have been told by two different sources this year that Sony does not do any in house work on their consumer electronics. Everything, including design and engineering, has be outsourced to contractors. One of the biggest contractors they use is Foxconn. Sony is basically just like Vizio.
That is a major surprise. I would never think that of a corporation as huge as Sony.

Maybe they use ePVision. wink.gif

BTW, I just mentioned the bankruptcy part only as an example, not suggestion Rovi is at that stage. It's just very poor business to pull the plug, then announce it. It's also suspicious as I'm sure they didn't just decide this last Wednesday.
post #25451 of 29213
Nice Bruce! Mention how the DTV transition does not relate to this and request that you (we) want them to open source [enough of] the firmware so that we, the users, may develop a MythTV patch.
post #25452 of 29213
Email I sent to the EFF
Quote:
To: info@eff.org
Subject: request for help with a class-action against Sony/Rovi/Foxconn

Hi,

Just last week Rovi Corp http://www.rovicorp.com/ quietly started
dismantling 'TV Guide On Screen' data injectors located at broadcasters
sites. The TVGOS service http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guide_Plus is
an electronic program guide that is received by numerous products that
were made at the time of the DTV transition. They have been working
fine and receive their data digitally in a PSIP stream of the host
channel. This is not a problem relating to analog (NTSC) having been
retired.

With Rovi having decided to turn off their equipment, products that use
TVGOS become essentially doorstops. For example, my Sony DHGHDD250
digital video recorder can't get the correct time, nor can it schedule a
recording without guide updates.

I believe Foxconn is the contractor that was used by Sony to develop the
software used in the device.

Does this fit a modern 'right to repair' statute being used for cars in
California?

The number of people effected by this should be in the millions.

I, personally, want Sony to open source the firmware so a MythTV patch
can be developed.
post #25453 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

That is a major surprise. I would never think that of a corporation as huge as Sony.
Maybe they use ePVision. wink.gif
BTW, I just mentioned the bankruptcy part only as an example, not suggestion Rovi is at that stage. It's just very poor business to pull the plug, then announce it. It's also suspicious as I'm sure they didn't just decide this last Wednesday.

With their (Rovi) stock price they are worth between 1 and 2 billion dollars. Maybe Google or Microsoft will buy them. Sony is only just over 10 billion. Not long ago Rovi was bigger than Sony.
Edited by JoeKustra - 11/8/12 at 2:34pm
post #25454 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

The CM-7400 has no cable card support, only clear QAM and clear QAM is on life-support with the new FCC ruling that allows cable co's to eliminate it. The unit has an optional subscription guide service for $50/yr delivered over the Internet. Without the guide subscription you are limited to using PSIP data. PSIP data is limited and not automatically refreshed by the DVR in stand-by -- the user must manually sweep through the channels to refresh the PSIP data. The unit was really designed to operate with the subscription guide service. And did I mention it runs as hot as a toaster.
This DVR is for people who are primarily OTA and are willing to program it VCR style because they absolutely refuse to pay for guide service under any conditions. For people who want a DVR with guide service: given the purchase cost of the CM-7400 and the never-ending cost of its yearly guide subscription and the lack of cable card support, purchasing a CM-7400 vs. a TiVo Premier with lifetime guide is financially silly. Only die-hard TiVo haters think it is a good deal.
Did I mention it runs as hot as a toaster.

How does the guide update for the tivo premier if only connected for OTA, is that through the internet?
post #25455 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by ay221 View Post

How does the guide update for the tivo premier if only connected for OTA, is that through the internet?
Yes. They offer an extra cost dialup ability last time I looked.
post #25456 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by ay221 View Post

How does the guide update for the tivo premier if only connected for OTA, is that through the internet?
Right. The older models (TiVo HD and earlier) also had the option to use a phone line, and it'd dial out late at night to get the latest guide data, but I'd imagine most people just use direct Internet connectivity these days.
post #25457 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by demonfoo View Post

Right. The older models (TiVo HD and earlier) also had the option to use a phone line, and it'd dial out late at night to get the latest guide data, but I'd imagine most people just use direct Internet connectivity these days.

Thanks. just making sure it will work without cable or satellite. Just OTA and a internet connection either ethernet or wifi.
post #25458 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by ay221 View Post

Thanks. just making sure it will work without cable or satellite. Just OTA and a internet connection either ethernet or wifi.
Wireless adapter is extra. You can check eBay. g/n/a
post #25459 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by ay221 View Post

How does the guide update for the tivo premier if only connected for OTA, is that through the internet?
Yes, everything is over the Internet. The TiVo connects home once a day to download guide information -- the guide is 14 days. But it is always touching base with home to check for any events it needs to attend to such as a schedule change or if you go to the TiVo website and schedule a recording remotely. When I schedule a recording from work, it is usually in my TiVo's queue within the hour. I am OTA, also.
post #25460 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

That is a major surprise. I would never think that of a corporation as huge as Sony.
Maybe they use ePVision. wink.gif
BTW, I just mentioned the bankruptcy part only as an example, not suggestion Rovi is at that stage. It's just very poor business to pull the plug, then announce it. It's also suspicious as I'm sure they didn't just decide this last Wednesday.

Sony has been making the most money from their media division. I wouldn't be surprised if they pulled the plug on their electronics divisions as this is where they are taking some big losses but not as bad as Sharp. If Sharp doesn't find help soon they may disappear. Maybe they should get into the drywall busines with ePVision.
If things don't start looking up for Rovi in the coming year or so I can see them maybe selling some assets or merging with somebody or just disappearing altogether.
I am signing up for an account with Tivo. Maybe they will have some deals for christmas. Looking at the XL4 Premier. Yea I know I am a glutton for punishment. My luck Tivo or Tribune Media Services will go out of business after I buy one.
post #25461 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by CarlP View Post

The key seems to be getting the available guide information from the internet to the non-internet capable HDD units. How would one go about doing this, assuming it is possible? I note references to WMC, but am not really clear about how to implement that---assume it means having a small computer dedicated to that task. Does anyone have details as to how to implement, or whether it would really work?

I think you misunderstood. WMC (Windows Media Center) can perform the functions of a DVR. The intent is that you throw the Sony in the trash, and replace it with a Media Center PC. There is no device to convert the internet data to anything the Sony can use (despite the wild speculation about it).

Mark
post #25462 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by mabuttra View Post

I think you misunderstood. WMC (Windows Media Center) can perform the functions of a DVR. The intent is that you throw the Sony in the trash, and replace it with a Media Center PC. There is no device to convert the internet data to anything the Sony can use (despite the wild speculation about it).
Mark
And while it might *theoretically* be possible, if you figured out the data structure, and had an appropriate guide source, and so on, to (a) insert a faux ATSC channel, or (b) insert packets into one live, the cost of the hardware to *do* the job would be simply throwing good money after bad. A lot of things are possible. Doesn't make them necessarily good ideas.

Edit: And doing a faux NTSC channel with VBI would be the same story.
post #25463 of 29213
Faux NTSC VBI insertion much easier wink.gif
post #25464 of 29213
Great letter; you can certainly add me to the signature list if desired.
post #25465 of 29213
LOL biggrin.gif
Quote:
David,

I understand that you wish to obtain source code for the Firmware update of the Digital Video Recorder. The issue you describe requires more extensive troubleshooting and communication than can be effectively handled via e-mail. Please contact our telephone support staff who will be happy to provide further diagnosis and assistance at: (800) 222-7669 or (239) 768-7669 Intl.

Thank you for understanding.

The Sony Email Response Team

And they won't give me schematics, either.
post #25466 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

I was waiting for that one.
I think ePvision is behind all of this. biggrin.gif

 

I thought it was TiVo, with you.

post #25467 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by davygrvy View Post

Nice Bruce! Mention how the DTV transition does not relate to this and request that you (we) want them to open source [enough of] the firmware so that we, the users, may develop a MythTV patch.
You know that they could never publicize their source code because it would allow defeating the encryption that prevents unauthorized copying of copyrighted material.
post #25468 of 29213
I beg to differ. Sony IS obligated to make sure my DHG works, in so far as it needs an outside signal. When they put this into the stream of commerce, the TVGOS was part of the deal. Sony may have paid Gemstar, but when Rovi bought Gemstar, they took on the contractual obligations to Sony as well. While no one is showing US the contracts between Sony and Gemstar, if I were Sony, I'd have the legal department check for breach of contract....Rovi's actions are putting Sony at risk, depending on the contract terms.

I have a Tivo as well, and the tivo will account for schedule shifts, has internet connectivity for netflix, youtube, etc, BUT for OTA, there's zero difference between the two.

The fact is we paid for lifetime listings, and if a subsequent buyer of the listing company does not like the deal, that's not our problem.

I just want a clock-set. How tough is this ? In the alternate, how about an inserter which only sends out clock time ?
post #25469 of 29213
Quote:
Originally Posted by CarlP View Post

The key seems to be getting the available guide information from the internet to the non-internet capable HDD units. How would one go about doing this, assuming it is possible?

IMHO, it would be easiest to start with a design like that of the DTV Pal, and adapt it to get its program guide data from the internet.
post #25470 of 29213
Quote:
With their (Rovi) stock price they are worth between 1 and 2 billion dollars.
I can see why they have to start pinching pennies. rolleyes.gif
Quote:
Yea I know I am a glutton for punishment. My luck Tivo or Tribune Media Services will go out of business after I buy one.
Sounds as a win loose situation. TWC would have to find another source of data for their Navigator disaster DVR's.
Quote:
I thought it was TiVo, with you.
That hasn't changed, but they are not the problem here. Again, its their business model I have the problem with.
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