Originally Posted by Mark Jones
(1) How do I confirm firmware version? I haven't been able to use some of the earlier posts...doesn't work.
Read THIS POST (#1030)
to get to the display screen that shows the "firmware" version in the lower-right (e.g. 22.37). It works.
On the same display screen, in the upper left, you'll see the "S/W" (i.e. software) version (e.g. 74.54-4003). 74=A24, 75=A25, 78=A28.
(2) How do I tell how much DVR storage I have left?
If you push the "MyDVR" button (or "LIST" or whatever your particular remote's setup has as the button to present your list of currently recorded programs to choose from to play), on the bar just below the info area and just above the list of programs there is an item called "DVR" and it shows your current usage, e.g. "DVR: 66% full".
Since the hard drive capacity determines the actual usage represented by "percent full" and therefore "remaining capacity", you'll just have to approximate how may HD/SD hours that might represent. On my 160GB DCH3416 a one-hour HD show is usually about 4%, so that's about 6.5GB per hour of HD. You can extrapolate on your 500GB model DCX to figure out how many HD hours each 1% corresponds to, or conversely how much percentage each 1-hour or 30-minute HD program corresponds to. But it will vary by bitrate of the channel as well, so this is just an approximation.
Here's the Wiki page
(3) Is there a list somewhere that lists the various HD broadcast resolutions for the various channels?
for ALL channels. If you want to make your own Excel spreadsheet that shows the resolution for just each channel you're really interested in, I think that would be the best thing.
Each channel shown on this page appears to have a direct link to the Wiki page for that channel, which seems to start off immediately with the resolution... which is what you want.
Just take some time and go through the series of links for the channels you personally care about and might watch, and make your own small (or large) list of channel/resolution.
I don't like the "native" mode handshakes...would prefer to switch resolutions manually than to have the DCX do it.
In my opinion you will tire of this quickly. I feel "native" to be much superior, to just let the box do this for me. The particular advantage of "native" is that the box can go directly to the resolution for the new channel immediately from whatever is the current resolution in effect for the current channel, whereas any manual alternative must cycle sequentially through the complete list of resolutions before eventually arriving at the desired new resolution. Any undesired resolutions passed through before arriving at the target resolution must still be passed through and cannot be avoided.
This "FORMAT" function (on the front panel of the unit and also programmable on the remote) has been around since at least the DCH3416, but "native" is a feature we long-time users of this product line have looked forward to... to just let the box do what's appropriate as we change channels. Waiting a few seconds for the HDMI handshake is just something that needs to be accommodated, whether it's done because of "native" or because you use the "FORMAT" button. This is for HDMI, and you can't get around it.
The "FORMAT" button on the front of the unit, or a button on your remote programmed with EFC 00109 to accomplish the same thing, will CYCLE SEQUENTIALLY THROUGH ALL RESOLUTIONS. There is no way to just go to 1080i directly, or 720p directly. If you're at 720p you'll have to come down through 480p and then 480i before you next come back to 1080i.
And at each format change you'll still have to pause a few seconds anyway while your HDTV resets itself to the new resolution, because if you don't (and simply push the format button several times in quick succession) you run the risk of encountering the "green screen" symptom caused by a failure of the HDMI handshake. And then you'll have to power the DCX off, wait, and power it on again and pray that the green screen symptom has disappeared and that you have not permanently made your HDTV "untrusted for HDMI" to the DCX. Worst case: pull the power cord, wait 30 seconds, plug it back in, and wait 3 days for the Guide to re-populate... and STILL PRAY that you have not permanently made your HDTV "untrusted for HDMI" to the DCX!
===>> NOT WORTH IT. Just let "native" do its thing, and get used to it.
Just get used to "native", and let the DCX do the work for you anytime you change to another channel. That's my recommendation.