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Official AVS Motorola DCX series HD DVR Topic! - Page 8

post #211 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfdtv View Post

Comcast's iGuide software does not keep track of the programs you've recorded and deleted. Only TiVo does that, as far as I know.

iGuide entries can designate whether a program is new or a rerun. This usually works fine for series on network TV or for shows that show episodes only once a week. But cable series often air episodes several times a week, and sometimes it isn't as clear to the networks how to apply the new or rerun designation (after all, if you watch the Daily Show at 8:00PM every night instead of at 11:00PM, the 8:00PM show you watch might be new to you, but not to the guy who recorded it at 11PM last night). If you record a program and keep it on your DVR, the DVR won't record a second instance of that episode. But if you delete it, the DVR won't remember that you already recorded it once.
post #212 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by crossbeaux View Post

iGuide entries can designate whether a program is new or a rerun. This usually works fine for series on network TV or for shows that show episodes only once a week. But cable series often air episodes several times a week, and sometimes it isn't as clear to the networks how to apply the new or rerun designation (after all, if you watch the Daily Show at 8:00PM every night instead of at 11:00PM, the 8:00PM show you watch might be new to you, but not to the guy who recorded it at 11PM last night). If you record a program and keep it on your DVR, the DVR won't record a second instance of that episode. But if you delete it, the DVR won't remember that you already recorded it once.

Right. One of the advantages of TiVo is that it keeps track of every program and episode you record to prevent re-recording of the same program even after it is deleted.
post #213 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfdtv View Post

Comcast's iGuide software does not keep track of the programs you've recorded and deleted. Only TiVo does that, as far as I know.

Well that sucks about Comcast's iGuide .... Is Comcast planning to eventually roll out a new TIVO guide (maybe in a partnership with TIVO) so that their current Guide service is improved?
post #214 of 4764
well, yes and no. what you're talking about already does exist but only in New England: http://www.comcast.com/tivo/

I don't know if this will ever really take off: they announced this in 2005 and did not start rolling it out til 2007 and now here we are in 2009 and it is still only available in New England, so i wouldn't hold my breath.
post #215 of 4764
Stretch437 .... Thanks for the info .... I'll stop holding my breath hoping this Comcast feature will reach the West Coast.

It's like hoping our tax funded TARP package will someday provide a few crumbs of relief out here in the West rather than mostly going to those who are "well connected politically in Wash, DC" like the big NYC banks and rust belt labor unions :-)
post #216 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfdtv View Post

Comcast's iGuide software does not keep track of the programs you've recorded and deleted. Only TiVo does that, as far as I know.

My current SD DVR is SageTV, which also tracks what shows you've watched. I thought it would be a basic DVR feature, but I guess not.

So, with shows that air several times a week (e.g., HBO/Showtime series) is the cleanest solution not to erase shows you've watched until a week or two later, when they'll no longer be considered new, assuming you have the disk space?

Well, if nothing else, that certainly helps inspire me to get my current DVR upgraded to be able to record HD...
post #217 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by Herschel View Post

My current SD DVR is SageTV, which also tracks what shows you've watched. I thought it would be a basic DVR feature, but I guess not.

So, with shows that air several times a week (e.g., HBO/Showtime series) is the cleanest solution not to erase shows you've watched until a week or two later, when they'll no longer be considered new, assuming you have the disk space?

That's correct.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stretch437 View Post

well, yes and no. what you're talking about already does exist but only in New England: http://www.comcast.com/tivo/

I don't know if this will ever really take off: they announced this in 2005 and did not start rolling it out til 2007 and now here we are in 2009 and it is still only available in New England, so i wouldn't hold my breath.

The Comcast TiVo software launched as work in progress and had a lot of bugs and other issues. Comcast uses a new version of the TiVo software, written from the ground up in Java, that runs on top of other middleware on the Motorola box.

Based on reports to this and other forums, it is only in the past few months that the Comcast TiVo software has reached a point where it was suitable for deployment to more service areas. Comcast and TiVo have worked out most of the bugs, performance issues, etc, so I do think we'll see it in more service areas before the end of the year.
post #218 of 4764
Picked up a DCX3400 on Sunday and of course I am having the hdmi handshaking issues. 3 Comcast phone reps have no clue what I am talking about so it looks like I have to wait for a tech.
post #219 of 4764
Well here is my solution. I recently signed up for the Comcast $99 triple play (in my case after taxes it is going to be the $163 triple play after the first 6 mo.) on the last day of the promotion. I have pushed the install to the last day which is August 11th, so I can still get my $100 gift card. This is allowing me to have the tech bring me a DCX3400 with them so I can try it and make sure there are no HDMI issues while they install my phone and Internet service. I was nervous about trading in my DCH3416 for a possible lemon. This will also give a little more time for the bugs to get worked out. I really don't need the larger drive until September when all the fall shows come on, but I am still recording plenty of junk this summer. Too bad Comcast did not opt for the 350 GB drives rather than the 250. a 350 would give over 40 hours or recording where the 250 only gives you around 30, best case. I only record HD and never watch SD TV anymore. Only being able to record 20 hours or so a week is a problem when I travel, but fortunately about half of what I watch is available on OnDemand (when Comcast remembers to put it out there that is). I have HBO now as part of the promotion (for free until my install!) and am bummed that Comcast does not have HD OnDemand content for HBO, only SD. This really sucks having to record stuff from HBO and taking up space. And, True Blood is not even on OnDemad in SD.

I was just about to post a rant about the Comcast iguide as the past couple weeks someone that sets flags must be on vacation since my DVR has been wanting to record series marathons on the cable channels. I was gone week before last and the Eureka marathon overwrote a bunch of stuff I had recorded and wanted to watch. Next week it is wanting to record Battlestar and Secret Life of... I have those set to "new episodes only". I guess as a precaution I should set it to only keep a couple episodes. But that would mess me up this week since SyFy is playing an older Eureka right after the new one on Friday that it wants to record. If they did that too many times the old episodes would overwrite the new ones. I liked Tivo on DTV much better. Wish Comcast would finally release their Tivo software. Also, the re-recording of episodes I have already watched and deleted drives me insane. I delete stuff as a way of knowing what I watched. Guess I will need to start waiting till things fill up later in the week to delete stuff.

Also has anyone else noticed that at times if you have two shows recording at the same time in the future, that if you try to tell both of them not to record that the other will get re-enabled. I've only noticed this with shows that have already been recorded. Very annoying since sometimes I have to delete a series recording entirely, in order to record something else. Seems to be a bug in the software. Also I have had times when I manually set a recording and then the series recording decides to set (but it is a manual indicator) and if you keep both on it will get stuck and record hours of stuff until you stop it. Used to happen to me all the time when Charlie Jade was on in the middle of the night on SyFy last year.
post #220 of 4764
Yes, you are encountering the DVR bugs. Almost every time the cable networks run marathons of shows I record only new episodes of, the DVR thinks all of them are new. To make matters worse, next week, I think, two networks are running marathons of shows I record at the same time, which means I get the "whack-a-mole" problem (i.e. when trying to delete two programs set to record at the same time, deleting one enables the other one, and vice versa, ad infinitum).

The only way I've found to minimize the "going on vacation" problem is to set the network series recordings (the ones you know will only record once a week and not be rerun multiple times) to "Save until I delete." Set the cable series that could record multiple times to "Save until space runs out" (or whatever it's called). You could get screwed by a marathon and get some things wiped out, but you'll minimize the damage as much as possible.

And yes, there is a known problem with manually recording a program that is already set to series record. You could end up with it recording forever (until the disk is full or another program is set to record on that tuner).
post #221 of 4764
not sure if it's some combination of settings or current firmware or something inherent in the DCX box itself, but i am seeing a lot of banding / posterization / false contouring and i believe the DCX box is causing it.

to test, i compared the DCX to a different tuner.

i don't have a splitter, so i took the physical cable coming out of the wall and disconnected it from the DCX and reconnected it to a standalone (samsung) HDTV tuner. i also removed the DCX from the TV's input and connected the samsung tuner to the same input i had been using.

i watched a lot of TV that included smooth gradients, eg certain well-known advertisements (like the orange field behind the ATT logo at the end of an ATT commercial or the red field behind the McDonald's logo displayed at the end of a McDonalds commercial) or perhaps a local news broadcast that has smooth gradients in their station ID graphics. i saw no false contouring.

i then reconnected the cable to the DCX and the DCX to the TV and watched a lot more TV, looking for the same types of test material. there were noticeable contours in all the gradients that had previously appeared to be smooth.

this kind of testing is anecdotal (and tedious and VERY-low-WAF) i realize. to be really rigorous i would need a splitter and two identical displays (or at least the ability to freeze-frame both tuners while switching the feeds going in to the same TV input).

but even this crude test, i feel, gives some pretty clear evidence that in *my* system, as currently configured, the DCX box is introducing false-contouring.
post #222 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xae View Post

Picked up a DCX3400 on Sunday and of course I am having the hdmi handshaking issues. 3 Comcast phone reps have no clue what I am talking about so it looks like I have to wait for a tech.

Why are you waiting for the tech? To tell you to switch to component or swap you to an older box that doesn't have a hdmi handshake issue? Because you realize there isn't anything else he can do for you right?
post #223 of 4764
Hi. I just had Comcast install two of these boxes in my apartment in Mountain View, CA. I have some pressing issues I hope someone can help me with. (Yes I've called Comcast, they're clueless, and want me to wait 48 hours to see if by chance the problem magically resolves itself).


a) I'm not getting HBO, and unlike the channels I don't subscribe to which have the menu's "Order for service" screen, this has an archaic white box with red letters saying "Call 800-xxx-xxxx" to subscribe to a cable service. Does this sound like a signal strength issue?

b) The zoom button on my controller doesn't do anything. Not on HD or SD channels. We like the zoom button for SD programming that's in letterbox, because then you can zoom in, fill the screen, yet it's not stretched.

c) What's with the excitement of this box broadcasting 1080p? What station broadcasts in 1080p? Maybe satellite? I have Comcast.

If I had to judge this box, other than my initial problems, I'd have to say I'm not the biggest fan of the controller functionality. The up, down, left, right buttons surrounding the "enter" button aren't good. I'm used to these buttons letting me scroll through the channel programming lineups while still watching my program. On this box, they control the DVR. You actually have to bring up the menu to scroll through what's on other channels/what's coming on next. The box itself does have a sleeker appearance though. My HD quality is totally soft compared to the SciAtl box I had on the east coast with Comcast. I think that might have something to do with living in an apartment building though. In the garage, where the main box is, it looks like a jungle with dozens of connections wired everywhere.
post #224 of 4764
re: your aspect ratio issues (since edited out of your original post) -- when you say you found the "setup" page using the menu, do you mean the setup page referred to in this document?

http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/How_to_...rola_DVR/Setup

sounds like it may be set to 4:3 and you want 16:9

none of this is really specific to the DCX, mind you - it applies equally to the DCH and DCT models as well.
post #225 of 4764
Thanks. I edited the first post because I found the document, and found my way into the hidden setup menu. Now a new question, I like the "native" setting for obvious reasons, but am miffed on something. If the box is set to native, the 4:3 override is greyed out to "off," yet it doesn't perform as if the override is off. In native mode, when I turn to an SD channel, it is indeed stretched (as are all the guide menus on SD and HD). Why would native of all modes force you to stretch in 4:3. Shouldn't it be....native? I don't like 4:3 stretched. I might just set it to 1080i so I can have the highest possible cable resolution (even though it tinkers with 720p broadcasts = espn) but still not have to see any stretched crap (all SD, and all menu and guide info). Any way around this?

Is there any benefit to using HDMI on this box? I use component because the picture quality is identical, and I only have 3 HDMI inputs on my TV, all of which are taken. I read the manual and it says HDMI for best picture. I know this to be debatable or untrue, so I obliged, hooked in HDMI and saw no difference. If cable companies broadcast in 1080p, that would be one thing, but they don't.

Thanks again for your quick reply. And I hope you didn't spend too much time replying to the orignal message before I edited. I thought it might be more courteous of me to revise my message since I read the manual after the post.

EDIT: OK I figured out how to have "native" HD resolutions without stretching the SD content. I had to disable both 480i and 480p. When 480p was unchecked, it was still stretching 480i, which I don't blame myself for the trouble, because this makes no sense. Natively, 480i is in a 4:3 aspect ratio -- so I'm not sure why the box stretches it. Now all SD content is output as 1080i (can't really tell the difference between upconverted SD crap from 480i) but at least it's not stretched.

Now I just need to figure out why my remotes 'zoom' button doesn't do anything and have Comcast figure out why it won't pick up HBO.
post #226 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonwww View Post

Why are you waiting for the tech? To tell you to switch to component or swap you to an older box that doesn't have a hdmi handshake issue? Because you realize there isn't anything else he can do for you right?

They "claimed" a tech would be able to update the firmware etc. However, I am pretty impatient so I went and swapped out a box today at the local office. No problems with the replacement (so far).
post #227 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xae View Post

They "claimed" a tech would be able to update the firmware etc. However, I am pretty impatient so I went and swapped out a box today at the local office. No problems with the replacement (so far).

I've had my DCX3400 for about a week. I've seen all of the weird HDMI issues with sound but bad image: green screen, split screen (top is on the bottom and bottom is on the top) and just plain wiggly lines. Every time ... if I type in a channel number (don't up or down arrow) for a channel with a different resolution than the one I am on, it comes back fine. The unit reshakes and comes back.

I haven't had a single issue for the last four days or so; but the first few had me worried; and the only antidote that I had heard of for it, was unplugging the unit. I haven't had to do that for a while. I am willing to hold onto this unit until the firmware update is pushed out.

I am not seeing any weird posteriorization or banding that I didn't have with my old DCT. If anything this box is better because it lets my Kuro do most of the processing (YCC to RGB, scaling, ...). The picture is typically cleaner than the old DCT.
post #228 of 4764
rhassle, it appears that Comcast is doing some firmware updates in Denver, because I have been having less problems, too. I have not talked with Tim about it, so I am not sure.

If I were to describe what appears to be going on, I would say that it feels as if they slowed down the processor, since it seems that the box is taking a few seconds to "think" about what it is doing before doing it, instead of "hurrying up" and getting all "confused" and freezing up.

This is not a technical description, but an appearance/illustrative one.
post #229 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by rhassle View Post

I haven't had a single issue for the last four days or so
...
I am willing to hold onto this unit until the firmware update is pushed out.

is it possible they *did* push it out a few days ago?
check the version number.
you are loloking for something like

SW: 75.59 - a25p2-2.S1.r-8
Firmware: 22.31

post #230 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by rhassle View Post

I am not seeing any weird posteriorization or banding that I didn't have with my old DCT.

Hmm. I have no doubt it's happening to me, but like I say it might not be affecting others. i just wanted to say "FIRST!" in case anyone else notices this later ; ) but seriously, on paper there's no reason why this box would exhibit this issue when the DCT and DCH boxes did not. motorola's own spec sheet says it supports "up to 32-bit color" which should be more than enough to prevent banding unless they are using lower bit-depth processing internally and just tacking on a bunch of extra zeroes just before output.
post #231 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by sebadooo View Post

Hi. I just had Comcast install two of these boxes in my apartment in Mountain View, CA. I have some pressing issues I hope someone can help me with. (Yes I've called Comcast, they're clueless, and want me to wait 48 hours to see if by chance the problem magically resolves itself).

a) I'm not getting HBO, and unlike the channels I don't subscribe to which have the menu's "Order for service" screen, this has an archaic white box with red letters saying "Call 800-xxx-xxxx" to subscribe to a cable service. Does this sound like a signal strength issue?

Are there some other numbers on the screen too, like a mac address or something? Sounds like the box needs to be 're-validated'. Basically the card needs the be paired with the host box. You'll probably get that error message on a few sporadic channels until it's fixed. A good CSR should be able to do that for you or worse case scenario a tech should be able to call in to get it fixed if he comes out.


Quote:
b) The zoom button on my controller doesn't do anything. Not on HD or SD channels. We like the zoom button for SD programming that's in letterbox, because then you can zoom in, fill the screen, yet it's not stretched.

Pretty sure Zoom doesn't do anything with these boxes, sorry. If you feel like spending some time to do the job right you could try reprogramming the Zoom button to work your TV's aspect ratio, it may turn out to be a project though.


Quote:
c) What's with the excitement of this box broadcasting 1080p? What station broadcasts in 1080p? Maybe satellite? I have Comcast.

No 1080p being broadcast by cable systems. I don't think any channels are even broadcasting it & it would take a lot of bandwidth in the cable system.


Quote:
If I had to judge this box, other than my initial problems, I'd have to say I'm not the biggest fan of the controller functionality. The up, down, left, right buttons surrounding the "enter" button aren't good. I'm used to these buttons letting me scroll through the channel programming lineups while still watching my program. On this box, they control the DVR. You actually have to bring up the menu to scroll through what's on other channels/what's coming on next.

Try pressing the 'OK/Select' button first, that should bring up the mini guide from where you can then use the arrow buttons to navigate the guide. If you just try pressing the arrow buttons first it activates the DVR functions without bringing up the mini guide.
post #232 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by stretch437 View Post

is it possible they *did* push it out a few days ago?
check the version number.
you are loloking for something like

SW: 75.59 - a25p2-2.S1.r-8
Firmware: 22.31


Actually they did push out a new version. I have 22.35 now and last week it was 22.31. Hopefully I don't have to worry about it any longer.

It doesn't really look any slower to switch stations (and resolutions) to me. Seems like it is working well now.

I like the new box and I am a happy camper.

Thanks again, TK.
post #233 of 4764
Thanks Jonwww. I took your advice and called to speak to another CSR and this time she got my HBO working. Good thing too, the last one told me they had to wait 48 hours to see if the problem fixed itself before sending out a tech!

Aside from the left, right, up, down on my Comcast remote controlling the DVR (when there's already a dedicated play, pause, stop, etc buttons!), and getting used to the guide (related to the complaint just listed), I like this box a lot. I think it's related to my strong liking of the appearance. I just moved to CA from the east coast, where I worked for a custom home theater integrater -- and no cable box I've seen on any of those jobs looks more suited for a millionaires Middle Atlantic rack than this one.

Glad to be back on the west coast. Thanks for everyones helpful responses.
post #234 of 4764
I also received the 22.35 firmware this morning.
post #235 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xae View Post

I also received the 22.35 firmware this morning.

Mine lists the SW version as 75.59, Firmware version 22.35. What's interesting, though, is that the Model is listed as DCT. Does that what everyone's says? My unit is definitely a DCX.

The major problems I reported when I first got the unit haven't recurred. The only weirdness I see now (very occasionally) are two things. Sometimes when I select a recorded program to watch, the front panel says "Play" but the TV continues to show the live program that was there before. When that happens, I can fix the problem by going back and picking a different recording to watch. It usually starts playing, and then I can go back and watch the first one.

The other problem that I experienced for the first time last night was that while watching a recorded program, the sound went out. I tried the mute/unmute trick, but that didn't work. So I selected another recorded program, which did have sound, then went back to the one I was watching previously, and the sound was there. Minor problems, I guess, but weird.
post #236 of 4764
mine says DCT too as well. the wikibooks article talks about motorola's STB acronym scheme , specifically "DCT is the Motorola acronym for 'Digital Consumer Terminal'" . not sure why they're bothering to display it along with the SW/FW version numbers.
post #237 of 4764
Of course, just after I posted that I had no serious problems, I went to watch "Rescue Me" and the recording stopped after 1 minute, even though it's listed as an hour. Had to delete it. At least it will record again, I hope.
post #238 of 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by stretch437 View Post

mine says DCT too as well. the wikibooks article talks about motorola's STB acronym scheme , specifically "DCT is the Motorola acronym for 'Digital Consumer Terminal'" . not sure why they're bothering to display it along with the SW/FW version numbers.

Mine also shows DCT as the model. The application software is essentially the same as those on the other models and the data sheet explictly states that the DCX is compatible with the DCT software API. Of course it is tweaked so that it works with the DCX but I think that the software is more or less the same codebase.

On a different note... I tried to record something yesterday and I thought that the red button showed up in the guide for the show but it did not record??? Luckily it was shown again at a later time so that I could get it.

I haven't seen the other issues that people are reporting, knock wood.
post #239 of 4764
i had the reverse happen to me when i first got the box- for one show, the guide did *not* display the red dot even though the show did appear in the series recording priority list (and the show did in fact record successfully) i triple-checked whether i had the right network, SD versus HD version, everything. i finally deleted all the schduled recordings and started over and it seems to work ok currently.

the DVR software has a lot bugs to iron out, i'm quite sure of that. for me i get the most bizarre results when i am just starting to play back a recording. eventually i can always get recorded shows to play, but it can take a lot of extra button presses and a high tolerance for random behavior. very low WAF.
post #240 of 4764
Many thanks to all of this forum's first brave and patient pioneers to upgrade to the DCX (and deal with all the "beta" bugs typical in the first year of many new rollouts).

You are all my guiding lights, and thus I'll wait few more months before swapping out my old DCT-3412 that still works fine for me.
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