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Magnavox 537, 535, 533, 515, 513, 2160A, 2160, 2080 & Philips 3576, 3575 - Page 773

post #23161 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by dingo9 View Post

The first thing I did with the 533 was connecting to the wall (no cable box). The initial scan only picked up random channels, nothing I would ever want to record. Next I tried a splitter and third I tried with the 533 as a slave to the cable box. The slave configuration would actually work for me as I only wish to pause live TV and record a program when I am not home to watch it live. However the lack of HD irks me.

I've set the 533 to 1080i, 1080p, progressive scan ON, progressive scan OFF. The picture isn't bad, but no where near the quality the HD picture that comes from Comcast.

I am not familiar with "upconvert to 1080p" although I suspect my issue is not a lack of 1080p, but a lack of HD. It seems there would be a lucrative market for a HD DVR that functions like a VCR, no?

I truly appreciate the kind responses.
It is like a VCR with a DVD burner. You have a nice TV and want to get the most from it (HD), then there are choices:
Build an HTPC,
TiVo with cable card,
The jungle of HD boxes with their own issues, no fee, function like a VCR and do not support a cable card. Do your homework.

Your TV gets more channels than the 533 and they are HD?
post #23162 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by dingo9 View Post

The first thing I did with the 533 was connecting to the wall (no cable box). The initial scan only picked up random channels, nothing I would ever want to record. Next I tried a splitter and third I tried with the 533 as a slave to the cable box. The slave configuration would actually work for me as I only wish to pause live TV and record a program when I am not home to watch it live. However the lack of HD irks me.

I've set the 533 to 1080i, 1080p, progressive scan ON, progressive scan OFF. The picture isn't bad, but no where near the quality the HD picture that comes from Comcast.

I am not familiar with "upconvert to 1080p" although I suspect my issue is not a lack of 1080p, but a lack of HD. It seems there would be a lucrative market for a HD DVR that functions like a VCR, no?

I truly appreciate the kind responses.

I hate to say this, but given your intended uses you probably should have simply gotten a DVR from your cable company. That way you would always be watching HD. Furthermore, with a DVR things would be a lot simpler for you. Using the 533 to simply pause live TV means that you will always be watching SD on your new "state of the art TV". Why have a nice HD TV and then only watch SD? Also, once you have a DVR, like most of us, you'll soon learn that recording shows you watch and then fast forwarding through commercials is very nice.
post #23163 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGA$$TV View Post

I hate to say this, but given your intended uses you probably should have simply gotten a DVR from your cable company. That way you would always be watching HD. Furthermore, with a DVR things would be a lot simpler for you. Using the 533 to simply pause live TV means that you will always be watching SD on your new "state of the art TV". Why have a nice HD TV and then only watch SD? Also, once you have a DVR, like most of us, you'll soon learn that recording shows you watch and then fast forwarding through commercials is very nice.
Forgot that. It would be a long term gain if Comcast goes MPEG-4 also. I pay for HD yet still use my 515H for shows that are not really HD and for overflow. Sometimes digital SD is good enough.
post #23164 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by wajo View Post

I have 4 units daisy-chained and all work very nicely on my boxless cable system.

The Philips and Mag units have a 4dB amp>low pass filter>2dB amp in the video circuit, which boosts the measured output signal ~1dB (compared to a non-amp'd circuit's ~1dB loss).

Wajo. As usual, you are "The Man"! Thanks again!
post #23165 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by dingo9 View Post

I am a 533 newbie, find this thread very helpful and want to confirm that the unit does not support high definition.

Yep It's not HD. Right now in the US, is hard to find a reliable no fee HD recorder. So if you don't want to pay a monthly fee to Crapcast, your best option is to buy a TiVo with Lifetime membership, and asking them for a discount price. wink.gif

Or, if you really hate, hate TiVo and renting DVRs, you can try to buy a MTV-7000D or Mini. biggrin.gif
post #23166 of 25415
... or a Ceton or Silicon Dust cable card tuner and Windows Media Center. That's much cheaper and more extensible than TiVo. Both options work very, very well for HD recordings and are excellent cable DVR and DVD recorder replacements.
post #23167 of 25415
Thread Starter 

WM "fixed" their odd $10 diff. between the 533 and 535... now $229.98 and $249.98.

post #23168 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Forgot that. It would be a long term gain if Comcast goes MPEG-4 also. I pay for HD yet still use my 515H for shows that are not really HD and for overflow. Sometimes digital SD is good enough.

SD from the Maggie is really good, but not quite as good as HD. I have used it to to move content around the house and to watch periodically. The reason for my post is that the OP just got a new TV and indicated that he wouldn't hardly be recording anything. Seems like a waste of money to buy a Maggie just to pause live TV. But, maybe he'll figure out how to get more value out of it.
post #23169 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

It is like a VCR with a DVD burner. You have a nice TV and want to get the most from it (HD), then there are choices:
Build an HTPC,
TiVo with cable card,
The jungle of HD boxes with their own issues, no fee, function like a VCR and do not support a cable card. Do your homework.
I've been, for now will stay with the 533 or maybe just the VCR as I rarely record and pausing live TV is a nice not must have.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Your TV gets more channels than the 533 and they are HD?
Many more and in HD.
post #23170 of 25415
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dingo9 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Simple test. Plug the 533 into the wall. Scan for channels. If all are scrambled you should have nothing. If you get channels then use the remote to set the HDMI output to 1080p. See if they look better.

As was said, the output of the 533 HDMI is SD. You can upconvert to 1080p. Have you ever tried a channel scan with your TV without the cable box?

The first thing I did with the 533 was connecting to the wall (no cable box). The initial scan only picked up random channels, nothing I would ever want to record. Next I tried a splitter and third I tried with the 533 as a slave to the cable box. The slave configuration would actually work for me as I only wish to pause live TV and record a program when I am not home to watch it live. However the lack of HD irks me.

 

When you had the 533 1st on the coax (direct to wall), did you do an Auto Channel Preset > Cable (Analog/Digital)?

 

Also, sometimes it takes more than a single scan like that to pick up the full complement of cable channels (at least it does here).

post #23171 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGA$$TV View Post

I hate to say this, but given your intended uses you probably should have simply gotten a DVR from your cable company. That way you would always be watching HD. Furthermore, with a DVR things would be a lot simpler for you. Using the 533 to simply pause live TV means that you will always be watching SD on your new "state of the art TV". Why have a nice HD TV and then only watch SD? Also, once you have a DVR, like most of us, you'll soon learn that recording shows you watch and then fast forwarding through commercials is very nice.
I hear you. Thing is I record very infrequently, 1 or 2 times/year at most. Comcast charges $8/month for their DVR. I have a hard time justifying $48 - $96 /recording. The NFL is the only thing that I really want to fast forward through.
post #23172 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by dingo9 View Post

I've been, for now will stay with the 533 or maybe just the VCR as I rarely record and pausing live TV is a nice not must have.
Many more and in HD.
That's bad, yet not unheard of. The tuner of the Magnavox gives some people problems. Usually it's OTA though. Sometimes the cable feed skips the xxx.1 channel and that is not handled well. Sorry, but there is not much I can suggest. Good luck.
post #23173 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by wajo View Post

When you had the 533 1st on the coax (direct to wall), did you do an Auto Channel Preset > Cable (Analog/Digital)?

Also, sometimes it takes more than a single scan like that to pick up the full complement of cable channels (at least it does here).
Yes. 3 times.
post #23174 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

It is like a VCR with a DVD burner. You have a nice TV and want to get the most from it (HD), then there are choices:
Build an HTPC,
TiVo with cable card,
The jungle of HD boxes with their own issues, no fee, function like a VCR and do not support a cable card. Do your homework.

Your TV gets more channels than the 533 and they are HD?

He could "bite the bullet" and rent a DVR from the cable company. A cable DVR can record 2 shows at the same time. For the price of 2 533s you can rent a cable DVR for many months and have HD.
post #23175 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdgcss View Post

He could "bite the bullet" and rent a DVR from the cable company. A cable DVR can record 2 shows at the same time. For the price of 2 533s you can rent a cable DVR for many months and have HD.
There's no easy solution. If Sony/Rovi didn't screw the DHG owners it would be a good solution too. The cable DVR is probably the easiest route but it is not the cheapest in the long run. It is a shame Funai couldn't make an HD unit for the USA.
post #23176 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

There's no easy solution. If Sony/Rovi didn't screw the DHG owners it would be a good solution too. The cable DVR is probably the easiest route but it is not the cheapest in the long run. It is a shame Funai couldn't make an HD unit for the USA.

533 route: 250*2/8=60+ months = 5 years. In 5 years cable will be all digital & encrypted rendering the 533 useless as a DVR
post #23177 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdgcss View Post

533 route: 250*2/8=60+ months = 5 years. In 5 years cable will be all digital & encrypted rendering the 533 useless as a DVR

Useless for cable maybe, depending on available cableco choices, but not useless for OTA or various other sources able to provide composite output, including HDMI to composite converters, IPTV and satellite. That which you record on your Funai does not disappear when you cease to pay the cable bill.
post #23178 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrmazda View Post

That which you record on your Funai does not disappear when you cease to pay the cable bill.

I understand that the cable company is now disabling the fast forward function on their DVRs on certain programs. I don't know if these are just shows from the on demand menu, or others too. You won't have that issue with shows recorded on the Maggies.
post #23179 of 25415
I'm wondering where this $8/month for a comcast DVR came from. Last time I checked, comcast wanted $27/month after all promos expire. That's pretty much in line with other cable and satellite systems. That will pay for a lot of DVD recorders if that's what you want. But cable cards are practically free on most systems, so I don't understand why more people don't take advantage of that.
post #23180 of 25415
Because I'm cheap and can't resist a bargain, I bought a WD $35 500GB SATA refurb drive form NewEgg with free shipping. I confess that it's an unauthorized drive (AA rather than AV) so we'll see how it works out. Anyway installation in my 2160A was easy thanks to the clear instructions in this great thread and for now the Maggie is working well.

JL
post #23181 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by JimLely View Post

Because I'm cheap and can't resist a bargain, I bought a WD $35 500GB SATA refurb drive form NewEgg with free shipping. I confess that it's an unauthorized drive (AA rather than AV) so we'll see how it works out. Anyway installation in my 2160A was easy thanks to the clear instructions in this great thread and for now the Maggie is working well.

JL
It's just like a 515H after installing the 727V firmware. Very sweet deal.
post #23182 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by DigaDo View Post

Our Comcast bill has an $8 monthly fee for each "additional digital output device" (or some such similar term).

I called and visited Comcast to dispute this charge as we were also paying a monthly fee for each converter box we have. They clarified that the $8 fee is for the wiring and "digital output device." I pointed out that all the cable wiring in the house is RG59U cable installed around 1983, long before the digital era and RG6 cable. Here is a picture of a product that Comcast calls a "digital output device:"
That's amazing. My cable company dropped the "per outlet" charge years ago. Maybe Comcast is taking lessons from the airline industry.
post #23183 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdavej View Post

I'm wondering where this $8/month for a comcast DVR came from. Last time I checked, comcast wanted $27/month after all promos expire. That's pretty much in line with other cable and satellite systems. That will pay for a lot of DVD recorders if that's what you want. But cable cards are practically free on most systems, so I don't understand why more people don't take advantage of that.

Our Comcast bill has an $8 monthly fee for each "additional digital output device" (or some such similar term).

I called and visited Comcast to dispute this charge as we were also paying a monthly fee for each converter box we have. They clarified that the $8 fee is for the coax cable and "digital output device." I pointed out that the coax cable in the house is RG59U cable installed around 1983, long before the digital era and RG6 cable. That coax cable was installed by an earlier cable franchise, Rogers CableSystem Pacific (USA). Over the thirty years since then there have been four or five other cable franchises providing service to this house, all using the same 1983 coax cable. Here is a picture of a product similar to the ones that Comcast calls "digital output devices:"


Edited by DigaDo - 3/6/13 at 4:23pm
post #23184 of 25415
They did that digital outlet crap with me too after I added my HD HomeRun Prime. It's just a backdoor way to always charge extra for customer owned cable card equipped box, and to make sure you get charged for the ONE cable card you have in use, like me, if you have one. They have all kinds of little things like that they can play with to get a few more bucks out of their customers.
I just got a deal where I signed up for two years at a cheaper locked rate. I was told last month would be included at the new much cheaper rate, it even showed up online right after we talked. We have a new to us house so some of the expenses were higher them we expected or came in at odd times so we were a bit late paying the cable bill. When I go in to pay online it claims I owe like 360 bucks!!!
When I went on chat to complain they explained my new rate was for NEXT month and I owed 200 at that point even though it said I owed a bunch more... This months bill last I checked shows I owe 99.98 or something close which is what my new rate was supposed to be:mad: They act like a credit card company sometimes I think, we're going to give you a break, wait we take that back, plus they charge a month ahead just to make it even harder to figure out what and when things kick in or are due.
If they are willing to give a discount when you complain they should give it to all their long term customers and not make you fight for everything, plus all the extra fees, taxes, and charges they never tell you about till the bill comes... eek.gif
OHH, they started charging extra for outlets again out here too, and if you still have any of those crappy non HD DTA boxes whether your using them or not they are now charging 2 bucks a month for those too so look your bill over, at least if your in the Oregon region.
Edited by Dartman - 3/6/13 at 1:49pm
post #23185 of 25415
I understand the $8 per outlet (which I agree is ridiculous). But I thought we were talking about DVR replacements. A comcast DVR is still $27/month when all is said and done. That's why I was surprised at the $8 figure being batted around.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JimLely View Post

Because I'm cheap and can't resist a bargain, I bought a WD $35 500GB SATA refurb drive form NewEgg with free shipping. I confess that it's an unauthorized drive (AA rather than AV) so we'll see how it works out. Anyway installation in my 2160A was easy thanks to the clear instructions in this great thread and for now the Maggie is working well.

JL
I'm cheap too. I'm not advocating spending $27/month on a cable DVR. I'm advocating using a cable card tuner and getting full HD recordings, full guide and schedule, limitless recording space, gorgeous user interface, integration with netflix and hulu and your personal music/photo/video library, easy expandability to every screen in your house, and 4 tuners. So unlike the maggie, no more manual timers required, no more crappy SD picture, no clunky editing, no limited recording space, no having to watch the same channel you're recording (assuming you use a cable box). Just seems like a better, cheaper solution. Not cheaper than $35, but still pretty cheap, $100 maybe.
post #23186 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdavej View Post

I understand the $8 per outlet (which I agree is ridiculous). But I thought we were talking about DVR replacements. A comcast DVR is still $27/month when all is said and done. That's why I was surprised at the $8 figure being batted around.
Perhaps, looking at my rates, I could say the cable company's HD DVR is $8 a month also. But that's not looking at the $13 for the HD tier, and $5 for DVR "service". Many people fail to check all the numbers.

While I can understand having the HTPC as an alternative or even a hobby, the Mag units are still at a price point where they sell quite well at Walmart. And probably most people on this thread think they have quite a value. I do.

I also have a TiVo and it has unlimited storage too. Not cheap but decent support and simple to use.

I use an XP desktop - no WMC. I use Win7 on a laptop - no PCI card for 5.1 audio but WMC does work. I tried it once.

I have a Sony DHG-HDD250. It's not a DVR it's an adventure. Still works for OTA or cable HD until everything gets encrypted. It supports a cable card unlike the Mag.

Isn't it amazing how many people would be happy with just analog and their 27" CRT televisions and VCRs.
post #23187 of 25415
All color has gone black and white including all screens including ones that are usually blue are all now black and white. The recorded items also play black and white as well as the channels tuned in through the DVD player.
Has anyone ran into this? If so any fix or time to get a newer model? It is not the TV.
Thanks for all the help.
Gohokiez
post #23188 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by gohokiez View Post

All color has gone black and white including all screens including ones that are usually blue are all now black and white. The recorded items also play black and white as well as the channels tuned in through the DVD player.
Has anyone ran into this? If so any fix or time to get a newer model? It is not the TV.
Thanks for all the help.
Gohokiez

This is common when using component (red green blue) connections as the cables are usually so heavy and stiff that they manage to pull away from the equipment fittings.

Make sure the cable connections are fully seated in the fittings.


Edited by DigaDo - 3/7/13 at 9:56am
post #23189 of 25415
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdavej View Post

... or a Ceton or Silicon Dust cable card tuner and Windows Media Center. That's much cheaper and more extensible than TiVo. Both options work very, very well for HD recordings and are excellent cable DVR and DVD recorder replacements.

It looks like $200 for either to work with cable not OTA. I spoke with Comcast, they are OK with the idea, will provide a no charge cable card.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Perhaps, looking at my rates, I could say the cable company's HD DVR is $8 a month also. But that's not looking at the $13 for the HD tier, and $5 for DVR "service". Many people fail to check all the numbers.

Precisely. I pay a $9.95 HD fee now along with Digital Starter, which is more than Basic or Digital Economy. They want $8.00 more to record.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Isn't it amazing how many people would be happy with just analog and their 27" CRT televisions and VCRs.

32 inch CRT, but being 15 years old the picture quality was fading and the aspect ratio was causing the scoreboard of some games to be cut from view. Now that I've upgraded I could never go back hence the disappointment with the 533's SD limitation.

BTW Comcast confirmed that most everything they are sending me is scrambled.
post #23190 of 25415
I've got a question about my 2160. When I hook the cable up to it and do a channel scan, I don't get any channels. However, I can hook the cable up to other devices and get channels, so I know there's a signal there. Is there something I can do to get channels with the 2160? Thanks.
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