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Scientific Atlanta HD PVR's / HD STB MASTER THREAD: General Posts/Links Here Only ! - Page 5

post #121 of 441
Hi all... i ujust got the 8300HD a week ago, switched from DTV due to tree issues..any way, my box always displays channels in 480i when it's first turned on, regardless of whether its an SD or HD channel.. it's connected via HDMI cable.

I have tried setting the power on to an SD channel, and always turning on the TV first before the cable box (tv is Panny 42PX60U), etc. with no luck. Every time I turn it on I have to go through setup to get the SA to switch to 1080i correctly for HD channels. Once I do that, it's fine until I power off the TV or the STB.
No other components are connected to the SA box, other than audio out to my AVR.

Any ideas on how to fix this? I have searched the forums and tried what I found, but no luck. Not sure what software version I have as I am not home right now to check, but I am with Adelphia cable in CT.

Thanks

-G
post #122 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by nhbeast View Post

Hi all... i ujust got the 8300HD a week ago, switched from DTV due to tree issues..any way, my box always displays channels in 480i when it's first turned on, regardless of whether its an SD or HD channel.. it's connected via HDMI cable.

I have tried setting the power on to an SD channel, and always turning on the TV first before the cable box (tv is Panny 42PX60U), etc. with no luck. Every time I turn it on I have to go through setup to get the SA to switch to 1080i correctly for HD channels. Once I do that, it's fine until I power off the TV or the STB.
No other components are connected to the SA box, other than audio out to my AVR.

Any ideas on how to fix this? I have searched the forums and tried what I found, but no luck. Not sure what software version I have as I am not home right now to check, but I am with Adelphia cable in CT.

Have you been to the General Settings page? There you can select which formats are outputted. By selecting all of them, the box will pas cjhannels as it receives them. Go to the first post in this thread, a common tactic, and follow some of the links to familiarize yourself with your equipment.

Also, "To get to the multi-page Diagnostics screen, simultaneously press and hold the front panel's SELECT and EXIT buttons till DIAG appears then release the buttons, then press EXIT and the the box tunes itself to the multi-page Diagnostics channel. To exit press Ch + or Ch -" Here, among many other things, you will be able to determine which software, SARA or Passport, your 8300HD is running. This information is needed for many of the things you could need assistance with. I suggest that when you've determined which software that you subscribe to that software's particular thread.
post #123 of 441
Thanks.. Yes I have tried both the advanced and easy setup, and have the picture setting to DVI/HDMI in general. In advanced settings I tried just about all imaginable combinations, including enabling only 1080i, with no success.
I will check the software version later on today and see if I can find anything there.
post #124 of 441
Once you have the SA 8300 HD box set up the way you want it, reboot it. The SA 8300 HD box should retain the new settings. I know this works with SARA, but I am not sure if this works with Passport.
post #125 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by nhbeast View Post

Thanks.. Yes I have tried both the advanced and easy setup, and have the picture setting to DVI/HDMI in general. In advanced settings I tried just about all imaginable combinations, including enabling only 1080i, with no success.
I will check the software version later on today and see if I can find anything there.

It should keep whatever settings that you make. Have you called your cable provider?
post #126 of 441
It does retain the settings I make, but for whatever reason always sticks on 480i at power on. If I go back into the advanced settings, the selections I previously made are still in tact. Normally I don't need to make any changes, just re-save it and it works correctly again, until I turn the tv or stb off.

I will try and do the reboot after setting it up again, and if that doesn't work I will call them cable co. and see if they can swap out the box or if they have heard of this problem before. Thanks

-G
post #127 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by nhbeast View Post

It does retain the settings I make, but for whatever reason always sticks on 480i at power on. If I go back into the advanced settings, the selections I previously made are still in tact. Normally I don't need to make any changes, just re-save it and it works correctly again, until I turn the tv or stb off.

I will try and do the reboot after setting it up again, and if that doesn't work I will call them cable co. and see if they can swap out the box or if they have heard of this problem before. Thanks

-G

This sounds like a known bug in SARA 1.88.x.x.

Bugs Remaining In 1.88.x.x (Not all-inclusive)

Turns On In 480i Mode - If the General Settings/Viewer: Power On is set to an HD channel or Last Channel (if that was HD), the unit will be in 480i mode when you turn it on. If you then tune to an SD channel and back, it will change to the correct HD mode. However, this can be minimized by setting the Power On option to an SD channel. It will then power up in the correct mode and change to HD when you tune to an HD channel. Another workaround is too simply cycle through the zoom modes using the # button.
post #128 of 441
have a quick question, all along my sa 8300hd via hdmi to my sharp lc-32ga5u worked fine. Recently I get a message stating my tv does not support hdcp please connect via component. I have to unplug my receiver and reboot it for it to work again and I wont get that message for weeks. I haven't really checked on here too much to see if its a known problem (which im guessing it is), just wanted to see if it actually is a known problem or if my receiver is starting to go. Oh I'm using it w/ TWC in NYC. thanks!
post #129 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by golbiga View Post

have a quick question, all along my sa 8300hd via hdmi to my sharp lc-32ga5u worked fine. Recently I get a message stating my tv does not support hdcp please connect via component. I have to unplug my receiver and reboot it for it to work again and I wont get that message for weeks. I haven't really checked on here too much to see if its a known problem (which im guessing it is), just wanted to see if it actually is a known problem or if my receiver is starting to go. Oh I'm using it w/ TWC in NYC. thanks!

I had problems with the HDMI connection often enough that I switched my connection to component and left it there.

Most of my problems were either losing the sound or losing the picture, but many other people have experienced the exact same problem that you describe.
post #130 of 441
Unfortunately both my components are taken up and i dont have a home theater system at the moment. Hopefully there will be an update one of these days. I dont mind unplugging my receiver once and awhile, but after awhile im sure this will get old.
post #131 of 441
The only thing I can suggest is to hold the Power button while plugging in the power cord the next time you reboot. This may not help, but it's worth a shot.

Unfortunately, you are posting in the Master thread (which is designed to provide links to the other individual SA threads for more tailored responses) and you don't list your location, cableco, or version of software, so it's difficult to provide further suggestions.
post #132 of 441
Question for ya'll...

I recently installed a DirecTV HD reciever at my farm in SC. I live in Raleigh, NC and recieve local HD channels via TWC (SA8300).

In Green Sea, SC the local HD channels are not on DirecTV and thus I recieve them OTA. (the ones I can get) I do get SD locals via DTV Here comes the cool part....

The reciever for DTV scans the OTA HD and Annalog channels and then incorporates them into the on screen user interface. This gives us the pure HD OTA AND convience of having it integrated into the UI.

WHY CANT TWC (SA8300 running Passport) do this???? It really is a great feature.
post #133 of 441
I recently purchased a sony 40xbr2 and have the Scientific Atlanta 8300HD DVR with Time Warner Cable. I have a question about Dolby Digital 5.1 setup. Can I get sound from my tv and my 5.1 av receiver at the same time, or will this box not all that. I mean if I am watching a show, can I choose from either the tv or the receiver from where I want to hear my sound by just increasing or lowering the volume. Please advise will this work, is it my tv (at present time I cant get this to work) or is it the box.

If I am doing something wrong, can someone please assist me.
post #134 of 441
Hey guys,
so I just hooked my my sa8300 hddvr with an hdmi cable to my sammy lcd...
I'm getting a strange issue.
When I switch to an hd channel, I can see footprint type smudges on the screen...however when I change to a non hd channel they go away...

It's very noticable for example if i'm watching a hd channel and I put the channel guide on where the grey bars come up on the side of the screen they are full of smudge type marks, but when viewing a non hd-channel they immediately go away.

Any fixes or advice about this? I can't figure out what the problem could be. It never happened when I used the components but today I got an hdmi cable and this was the result...

thanks
Khurram
post #135 of 441
Also,
I can't seem to get to the setup menu that is mentioned in various threads.
When I hold down the info and guide button on the box nothing comes up.
No setup menu.

And I have the box off and the tv on.
post #136 of 441
I can't get the setup wizard to run either. Very frustrating.
post #137 of 441
If you newbies would put a location in your profile and indicate what cableco you have, it would go a long way toward trying to help you and guide you to the right thread (this is a Master thread after all and is designed to provide links to individual threads, not answer all questions).

That said, there are at least 2 software packages (SARA and Passport) running on the 8300 and more (Navigator and Tivo) are coming, so it's not a matter of just selecting any 8300 thread and trying out the info that is presented in that thread.

FWIW, I believe the Guide/Info combo is for users running SARA software. I believe Passport users enable formats using the General Settings menus. If the Guide/Info doesn't get you into the setup routine, maybe try pressing Settings twice to get to General Settings and look for something like Set:Picture Format. Then, if you see options like Pass-Through, Upconvert, etc., you have SARA and the Guide/Info should have worked. I don't use Passport, so I don't know what the exact options are, but if you see resolutions like 480i, 720p, 1080i, etc., then you have Passport and you should be able to enable the formats you need/want right there.

If none of this works, let us know and we'll try to help further. Also, please update your profile and indicate your cableco. Eventually, once you figure more out, it is also helpful if you indicate your software version number (SARA 1.88.22.1 or Passport 2.5.066).
post #138 of 441
Doh! Looks like I have Passport. I posted after only reading the SARA threads. I'm good to go now, thanks.

I'm with Time Warner in NC, BTW.
post #139 of 441
Thanks. I assume you found the Passport thread.
post #140 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mushimo View Post

Hi, recently upgraded from the explorere SA 4200HD cablebox to the SA 8300HD DVR.
I noticed that the picture quality of the Hi Def channels on SA 8300HD DVR is not as clear as that of the SA4200HD. I've used the same exact compononent cables for both boxes along with my Sony Bravia HD LCD. Do HD DVR's inherently have a lower picture quality than standard HD box? or is the the SA 8300HD DVR defective?

Hi - I had the exact same experience. We will probably return the DVR box to get the non-DVR HD quality again. From what I have read, the quality will depend upon the quality of the DVR recorder - the lower quality definitely looks more "digitized" - it is after all going through a second recording process where it is being saved to the hard drive before going to the TV (even if you are not recording the show) - kind of like a better version of what we get through a Series 2 Tivo. The Tivo Series 3 is supposed to be the best quality DVR, but at a price point of $650, I'm going to wait a while longer to put PVR onto our new HD TV (we moved the Tivo to the bedroom w/ our standard TV).

If anyone knows of a way to increase the HD quality through the SA PVR, please let me know - it's disappointing , and with a brand new 1080p Samsung DLP, we want the best quality experiences out of our high def. If we want to record lower quality programming, we'll do that on our standard TV for now.
post #141 of 441
The DVR's are bit for bit identical to the original stream if they are digital channels.
Differences in quality will be due to setup of the STB options as described in the tips and tricks thread or the manual.
My guess is that it was defaulted to a 480 output.
vegggas
post #142 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by vegggas View Post

The DVR's are bit for bit identical to the original stream if they are digital channels.
Differences in quality will be due to setup of the STB options as described in the tips and tricks thread or the manual.
My guess is that it was defaulted to a 480 output.
vegggas

Veggas - We checked the settings and it is set at the 1080i output. The quality difference I'm talking about appears only on the High Definition channels (standard broadcasts appear about the same).

Just to complete the info, we are on cablevision, the SA is connected via HDMI cable (Monster HDMI to HDMI). The previous non-PVR STB was connected via Monster HDMI (TV) to DVI (Box), but that factor alone shouldn't have produced *better* quality I wouldn't think.

Quality info: high def programming is still high def quality, it just appears a bit more "flat" than the other box, more film/grainy backgrounds, has harder time capturing motion without slight pixilating blur - with more variations between the channels visible (some movies on HBO/Showtime ok, other channels like PBS HD definitely worse), with an infrequent artifact event apparent (picture breaking up into digital boxes as hard drive struggles to catch up to picture). All of this probably sounds worse than it is - most people probably wouldn't notice the difference, it is just these little things bother me...I don't quite get the same "Wow" we did out of the other box. Generally the broadcast quality is now one step below what I am getting now out of my ordinary DVD's played through the Samsung 1080p upconverting DVD player, when before the broadcast was better - absolutely perfectly crisp both in foreground and background.
post #143 of 441
<- just tossing mud on the wall...

Could some of it just be the per-[input/scan rate] calibration?
Or some [cadence/timing mismatch/cycling] between the signal - 8300 - TV scaler?
Does the TV have a QAM tuner and can you tune any of the unencrypted channels directly to compare?

v/r,
C-F
post #144 of 441
My SA8300HD (that I have had for over 6 months) just did something I've never seen...

It was off, and then the drive spun up and the display went from the clock to a bunch of strange count downs as if downloading or formating the drive or something.

the process ended after about 5 minutes, then the display said "proc" then "boot" and went blank... then the time came back.

I was very afraid that when I turned it on, I would find that my drive had been formatted and all my recordings would be gone... but luckily everything was still intact.

I checked the software version and it is now:

SARA v1.89.16.2

(previosuly when I checked several months ago, it was 1.87.16.a11)

Anyone else have this version of sara running?
I was considering getting an external SATA drive, but maybe I should wait to be sure there are no reported bugs with this version of sara...

I am in Toronto with Roogers cable.

thnx
post #145 of 441
From what I read over on HDTVoice, Rogers is the only cableco to load that version so far. They did it partially because of the upcoming change to DST and finally add new features that have been available elsewhere in 1.88.x.x versions.
post #146 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubleDAZ View Post

From what I read over on HDTVoice, Rogers is the only cableco to load that version so far. They did it partially because of the upcoming change to DST and finally add new features that have been available elsewhere in 1.88.x.x versions.

what is the change to DST (I assume DST = day light savings time)?
Is it being discontinued all together? or just changed to start/end at a different period?

is there a list anywhere that outlines the 1.88.xx features you are talking about?

One thing I noticed right away with the new version, is that when you change channels the little info bar includes the start and end time as well as the show title, so that is handy I guess.
post #147 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by CANNON-FODDER View Post

<- just tossing mud on the wall...

Could some of it just be the per-[input/scan rate] calibration?
Or some [cadence/timing mismatch/cycling] between the signal - 8300 - TV scaler?
Does the TV have a QAM tuner and can you tune any of the unencrypted channels directly to compare?

v/r,
C-F

I did the diagnostic last night and indeed, the worse channels are outside the recommended QAM rate - i.e., PBS. It's too bad I didn't know about this on the non-PVR box as I don't know whether that box would have produced the same results. As for tuning those specific channels or a QAM tuner on my TV, I'm going to have to research this more to see if/how that can be done on my Samsung 5687w.

However, I don't think this has anything to do with the overall difference between the PVR and non-PVR STBs because even the "good" channels within the proper scanning specs (i.e., HBO, Showtime) are not quite at good as they were on the non-PVR box....so while this explains why some channels are better than others, this doesn't explain the difference between the two boxes.

I have to say that if you never had the non-PVR SA box, you'd never know you weren't getting the top quality on your TV. The difference would not be apparent unless you'd actually seen both boxes running on your TV. I'm curious if anyone else has compared the two boxes (w/ and w/out PVR) on their HD TV.
post #148 of 441
I think DoubleDAZ was playing with a digital only 4xxx series box as well, you might ask for his opinion.

Looks like a Samsung HL-S5687W might not have a QAM tuner.

I have only seen the Pioneer Voyager 3510HD box and the SA8000HD hooked up to a Samsung 32" 4:3 CRT HDTV through a Zektor component switch on PASSPORT (around three years ago and not a platform to compare at the level of critique you are expressing). Without looking back, I think there was some discussion about a "softer" picture, but I am not sure I saw it. So much of [video quality] is subjective and dependant on calibration. The thing I remember most is the loss of an easy way to output anamorphic composite/s-video signal for archive recordings.

v/r,
C-F
post #149 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by CANNON-FODDER View Post

I think DoubleDAZ was playing with a digital only 4xxx series box as well, you might ask for his opinion.

I have an 8300HD DVR and a (broken-waiting on replacement) 8240HD DVR. The latter is the same as the 8300, but without the analog tuner. I see absolutely no difference in PQ between the 2, but I did notice a difference in PQ when I went from the 3250HD non-DVR to the 8300HD DVR. I won't go so far as to say one was better than the other, just that they were different, so I went back through DVE and IHND Tuneup to update my TV settings for brightness, contrast, etc. I'm sure I'd see some differences in a side-by-side comparison, but I'm not enough of a purist to worry about that.
post #150 of 441
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubleDAZ View Post

...I did notice a difference in PQ when I went from the 3250HD non-DVR to the 8300HD DVR. I won't go so far as to say one was better than the other, just that they were different...

Thanks, guys, for all your input!

Yes - we adjusted contrast/brightness too - made it better, but not perfect. The biggest thing is that the PVR doesn't seem to be able to handle motion as well - that's when things blur and pixilate. For instance, Charlie & Chocolate Factory on HBO looked as good as non-PVR at first, until the ship goes moving down the water, then the difference is apparent (we had watched this show before on the non-PVR so I could compare). Yes, both don't render the motion of that scene quite completely, but on the non-PVR it's barely noticeable, while it is certainly noticeable on the PVR. My guess is that the apparent difference is all going to depend on everyone's specific setup and TV.

I still have the 8300HD PVR but I feel the difference is enough that I am probably going to exchange it back for the non-PVR when I get the chance. The convenience of recording of a show is nice but not enough to compensate for me, since we use this TV just for the HD "wrap-around" experience and can record shows in standard quality on my standard non-HD TV. Though if SA comes out with a new model box or the Tivo drops in price, we'll try again.
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