Channel Master DVR+ Owners Thread - Page 8 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #211 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by davezatz View Post

No, they've adjusted their strategy and I like the modular approach. So it'll be this single unit with a fixed 16GB and unlimited drive options. Well not entirely unlimited, but it seems rather open. I'm using an unbranded 1TB USB-powered drives with no problems. Right now they have they external drive accessory options on their store and according to CNET they may do some sort of antenna/drive bundle pricing down the road.
Will find our more and do some testing tonight.
Can a 128 gig usb flash drive be used? That's still a lot of HD recording hours and PNY has one for less than 50.00
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post #212 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 02:17 PM
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Nobody here will probably care but lack of composite or even modulated RF eliminates anyone wanting to use this box with an older TV or one without HDMI. It also stops the ability for someone to offload things to to a DVDR or analog recorder and without component it wouldn't be a good match for HD PC capture cards with component inputs.

Because of these shortcomings I have no interest in a box like this, guess I'll continue with my Tivo HD and cheap single tuner iView which has not only composite and RF but also component output, all for ~$40.....

I wish Channel Master luck but wonder why they'd chose to alienate everyone who doesn't use HDMI as a single source connector.......oh well.

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post #213 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post

DaveZatz, since you're the first to actually get one, could you post some screen shots? I've heard it's different from the typical Echostar UI but know nothing more....

Did you watch my YouTube video? Some images of the guide and settings within. Is there something specific you want me to look for?

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Originally Posted by autobot View Post

Can a 128 gig usb flash drive be used? That's still a lot of HD recording hours and PNY has one for less than 50.00

When I tried a much smaller USB thumb drive I was hit with an error about a 80GB minimum. So I assume your scenario would work. However, it's probably not the kind of storage you'd want for DVR usage...
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post #214 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 03:13 PM
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Will this run correctly with Xbox One? Meaning the use of the Xbox Guide, voice commands, etc.

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post #215 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by jjeff View Post

Nobody here will probably care but lack of composite or even modulated RF eliminates anyone wanting to use this box with an older TV or one without HDMI. It also stops the ability for someone to offload things to to a DVDR or analog recorder and without component it wouldn't be a good match for HD PC capture cards with component inputs.

Why would you do that when you can just copy the recordings to your PC to burn them? That's a lot faster than playing through the entire show while you capture it, and it prevents an extra round of transcoding losses. Even if you capture during the initial broadcast, you can't capture two shows at once, so you'd still have to replay the second show to capture it later. I agree that component outputs would have been a nice gesture, but there's little reason for CM to cater to the few people who have HDTVs that predate HDMI.
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post #216 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 03:47 PM
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Very pleased to see this box finally available for preorder. Looks sleek and thin with nice menu interface. I hope it will have a strong tuner like the 7000/Pal box. And I am curious as to how the signal meter is displayed. Would like to see a pic, and more overall user interface/menu pics. The Rovi guide seems very nice and displays network logos. But it may be problematic to a degree. Because Rovi guide data is limited to DMA boundaries in its database. So if you receive stations from multiple markets, the Rovi guide will likely only provide guide data from the official market, and not the neighboring market. So hopefully the PSIP data can somehow be integrated into the Rovi guide menu or the channel listings to include all stations received. I am very curious as to how that will work. For places like Maryland where you receive both DC and Baltimore channels. With TiVo, it is a bit different. You can find a zip code between cities and the data will include both markets that is based on antenna reception capability rather than official DMA boundaries.
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post #217 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 03:47 PM
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Anyone know if you can plug in a USB DVD drive?
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post #218 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 04:20 PM
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This looks pretty slick but realistically what does this offer over the original PAL HD or a simple TiVo HD that can easily be picked up now for $200 to $250 with Lifetime service. With just 2 tuners its a bit limited. The guide service is never going to come close to Tivo. The only benefit I see is for those few people without internet service.

If I had to choose and for roughly the same overall total outlay of funds (after hard drive purchase), I'd just pick up a used Tivo Premiere with Lifetime.
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post #219 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 05:05 PM
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For those asking about a USB flash drive: In theory it should work, but be aware that most "thumb" drives can't keep up with the writing speed needed for HD. That said, recording SD should work and I'm sure folks can find the ones that do work OK with HD.

Regarding the XBox One: I'm sure Microsoft will get the DVR+ added to its IR remote code library soon. (It's probably not there yet because this box is so new, but be patient.) But to me, the DVR+ seems like overkill for pairing with an XBox One. You'd be paying extra for the DVR+'s guide and VuDu, which you wouldn't need with the XBox One. If I wanted a 2-tuner DVR to go with the XBox One, I'd probably choose a PHD-VRX2 (its firmware finally seems to be getting reliable enough) and save a few $$.

@Charles R : Yes, it's possible that someone only wants to watch 4 programs a week and yet has the bad luck of having all 4 on at the same time. But the odds of that happening are small, even though that's more or less what happened to you. Guess you're just unlucky

However, the more shows you watch, the more likely that is to happen some time during the week. So it's not exclusively a question of how heavy your viewing is - some luck is involved - but the chance that you'll find two tuners inadequate clearly goes up rapidly as the number of shows you want to watch increases.

BTW, I'm still waiting for Silicon Dust to decide to start selling their own DVR (which would use their own HDHR tuners, of course) That seems like the perfect solution to the "how many tuners" question - and also to the CableCARD issue. (Like you I've gone the PC route and found it a quite useful alternative, but I also realize it'll never be the solution for everyone.)

@davezatz : Thank you for the YouTube link. I'll watch it but I was thinking some static screen shots as well: the main menu, the guide, the upcoming recordings list, and the recorded shows list would be a good overview.

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post #220 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 05:18 PM
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so somebody enlighten me, unlike my current cm dvr which has in and out coaxial connections. I only see (in) with this new model. how do I use the tv tuner or bypass the dvr's like when both of the dvr tuners are recording?

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post #221 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 05:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post

BTW, I'm still waiting for Silicon Dust to decide to start selling their own DVR (which would use their own HDHR tuners, of course) smile.gif That seems like the perfect solution to the "how many tuners" question - and also to the CableCARD issue. (Like you I've gone the PC route and found it a quite useful alternative, but I also realize it'll never be the solution for everyone.)

@ DaveZatz: Thank you for the YouTube link. I'll watch it but I was thinking some static screen shots as well: the main menu, the guide, the upcoming recordings list, and the recorded shows list would be a good overview.

I'll get some DVR+ static screenshots up in the next 48 hours. Regarding Silicon Dust, they're producing the dual tuner Simple TV 2. So the "DVR" is Simple TV to their network tuners. SimpleTV doesn't do it yet, but it's on the road map: to create a dynamic pool of tuners from multiple devices.
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post #222 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 05:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Brudha View Post

This looks pretty slick but realistically what does this offer over the original PAL HD or a simple TiVo HD that can easily be picked up now for $200 to $250 with Lifetime service. With just 2 tuners its a bit limited.
If you can get a 3-tuner TiVo with Lifetime for $200 (or a 4-tuner for $250), go for it! Most would consider that a bargain.

As for the Pal, it does look quite similar. The main differences seem to be the longer guide: 2 weeks vs. 1 for the Pal (when TVGoS was working); Vudu; and (apparently) the ability to transfer recordings to other devices (waiting for confirmation of that).

The main drawback I see is the lack of any outputs aside from optical audio and HDMI (a misguided attempt to keep folks from recording Vudu?) - not even L/R audio jacks!
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The guide service is never going to come close to Tivo.
Come on; now you're just trolling. There's no way you could possibly know that, and it just sounds silly.
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post #223 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by airgas1998 View Post

so somebody enlighten me, unlike my current cm dvr which has in and out coaxial connections. I only see (in) with this new model. how do I use the tv tuner or bypass the dvr's like when both of the dvr tuners are recording?
Your observation is correct. You'll have to use an RF signal splitter to do that. They're cheap and widely available, but you might have issues if you have any weak OTA signals.
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post #224 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 06:17 PM
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Originally Posted by davezatz View Post

I'll get some DVR+ static screenshots up in the next 48 hours. Regarding Silicon Dust, they're producing the dual tuner Simple TV 2. So the "DVR" is Simple TV to their network tuners. SimpleTV doesn't do it yet, but it's on the road map: to create a dynamic pool of tuners from multiple devices.
Just watched the video. The DVR+'s "look and feel" reminds me of my first HDTV receiver - a Samsung, as it happens - it had similar "semi-transparent" menus, icons, and a "bottom-half" guide. (Of course the Samsung wasn't a DVR, just an STB, and it unfortunately died some time ago.)
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post #225 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 06:45 PM
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Does it have a signal strength meter I hope?
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post #226 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post

If you can get a 3-tuner TiVo with Lifetime for $200 (or a 4-tuner for $250), go for it! Most would consider that a bargain.

As for the Pal, it does look quite similar. The main differences seem to be the longer guide: 2 weeks vs. 1 for the Pal (when TVGoS was working); Vudu; and (apparently) the ability to transfer recordings to other devices (waiting for confirmation of that).

The main drawback I see is the lack of any outputs aside from optical audio and HDMI (a misguided attempt to keep folks from recording Vudu?) - not even L/R audio jacks!
Come on; now you're just trolling. There's no way you could possibly know that, and it just sounds silly.

Who said anything about a 3-tuner for $200 or 4-tuner for $250?? Who has 3 tuners? How many tuners does the DVR+ have? TWO. Compared the cost to a 2008 Tivo HD (with Lifetime) or the old, original PAL HD which have 2 tuners. There's just not much in the DVR+ allowing for greater functionality anywhere here which is what most users are looking for. Taking into consideration it lacks a hard drive, personally, I'd rather opt for a used two Tivo Premiere with Lifetime for roughly the same cash outlay give or take. The biggest thing going for the DVR+ is the slimness factor.

All CM had to have done with the DVR+ was incorporate 4 OTA tuners rather than the same old and then they'd have something to help woo many customers over. Hell, even 3 would have been nice - just something more than what's been done in the past and by everyone else.

If you seriously think the guide service is going to rival Tivo's, then your post is about as trolling as it comes and clearly shows your naivety! No competitor can compare to all the options and functionality and that's why they can command up to $15/mo for it and sue others who attempt to copy. Is the CM going to offer Season Passes? Will you be able to schedule recordings online or via a smartphone app? Will there be the ability to add something on for streaming or downloading natively?

I couldn't care less about old composite or component jacks. Manufacturers are building for the future, not the past. Tell the same concern to Roku on their box. If one is really concerned about that then maybe it would be better to just settle on the prior 2008 box technology...
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post #227 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 07:49 PM
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I see nothing in the guide for programming the remotes to use with multiple DVR+ units. The earlier Echostar/CM units had this function, allowing you to use two or more of the same DVRs in one room. Many of us currently have multiple DVRs in use now because we need to record 3 or more programs at the same time. If that function hasn't been included, I see no acceptable way to get around it with these new units. We may have to keep using our old DVRs instead of updating to the new model. Is it there, but not listed in the manual? Can CM add this feature through a software update?

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post #228 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 08:13 PM
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Originally Posted by yhtomitb View Post

I tried to send a query to the CM Support Page, but there was no way to hit send or enter when completed. I tried on both Safari and Firefox browers.
I had the same experience. I wanted to contact CM, filled out the support request, but could find no way to send it. Is Dave our only way top contact Joe B. and others at CM?

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post #229 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 08:15 PM
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I looked through the manual and didn't see anything about manually scheduling timer recordings, VCR style. Is it guide or nothing?
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post #230 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 09:07 PM
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What I noticed when reading through the user manual was the seeming lack of information. I'm guessing they are planning on adding functionality through firmware updates, and therefore want the manual to be basic. If it's like the pal DVRs it will allow you to set up a timer (daily, weekly, etc.) after you select the program. It will be interesting to see if a "season pass" is offered. There are screen shots in the users manual. They were taken in the Denver DMA. rolleyes.gif

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post #231 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 10:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Brudha View Post

If you seriously think the guide service is going to rival Tivo's, then your post is about as trolling as it comes and clearly shows your naivety!

The whole point of non-TiVo DVRs is to provide options to people who don't want a TiVo. TiVo will never have any "competitors" in the near future, because TiVo's main features are patented and can't be copied until those patents expire. Not everybody needs or wants what TiVo offers, so just because another DVR has different capabilities does not mean that it won't be useful.
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post #232 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 11:10 PM
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Details aren't clear yet. Channel Master tells me the files are stored/written used a Linux file system, with the implication that it may not be super easy to get at and a suggestion that they may ultimately produce something to help us offload recordings. I'll take a look at my external drive and report back.
To be clear, there are no recurring guide fees for DVR+ customers. I'm sure Channel Master pays fees to Rovi, but it's baked into the product's cost and their cost of doing business. Seems to me one of CM's top priorities was to deliver this without fees.
Enjoyed your video and am looking forward to unboxing one of these. Can you comment on the PSIP guide? It's be great if you could post another video showing how that looks/works.
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post #233 of 16585 Old 12-16-2013, 11:15 PM
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Two tuners? Makes it not even an option for me. I just had an issue with WMC which was the local station's fault and I found out TiVo had the same issue. I picked up a Roamio for $100 ($150 minus $50 gift card) and Lifetime would be $400 with promo code (I tried and it worked...).

That's $500 versus what ($350 with same storage) for only two tuners? I guess some might think differently... how so I'm not so sure. smile.gif  
Where did the $50 gift card come from and what promo code did you use to get the lifetime down to $400? Last I checked, $150 was the best price for the hardware and lifetime was $500, so, $650 for the same storage.
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post #234 of 16585 Old 12-17-2013, 04:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Kansas_Tom View Post

I looked through the manual and didn't see anything about manually scheduling timer recordings, VCR style. Is it guide or nothing?

If you watch Dave Katz's video http://www.zatznotfunny.com/2013-12/channel-master-dvrplus-cm7500/ you'll see a Manual Timer option on the record function. BTW, excellent video, I've watched it twice, thank you very much, Dave.
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Does it have a signal strength meter I hope?

I was wondering about that myself. On the CM7000, the signal strength is displayed if you just hit the enter button. This helps with tuning in some stations if it's windy or raining or something. I didn't see it on the video: does anybody know?

Also, I'm kind of confused about the storage. There's an option to buy 80 hours of HD for an additional $99.99. What kind of storage is that? A small external hard drive, or what? Do you have to buy it from CM or can you buy your own? And does this seem like a good price? They also offer the Wi-Fi adapter for $39.99. Again, do you have to buy it from CM, and is that a good price?

And: any idea if the tuners are strong? There's a big difference between my DTVPal, which has weaker tuners, and my CM7000, which gets the stations in much better. I know, they are supposed to be identical, but I've tested both and the CM is superior. So I'm wondering how the tuners on the DVR+ compare.
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post #235 of 16585 Old 12-17-2013, 04:15 AM
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I love the strength meter, but have not used it except in passing since acquiring an HDHR3. For $50, it has signal strength, signal quality, and symbol quality -- which is what really matters -- plus you can take it on the roof or in the attic with a tablet or laptop.
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post #236 of 16585 Old 12-17-2013, 04:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ko220 View Post

Also, I'm kind of confused about the storage. There's an option to buy 80 hours of HD for an additional $99.99. What kind of storage is that? A small external hard drive, or what? Do you have to buy it from CM or can you buy your own? And does this seem like a good price?

If you'd looked at the Channel Master page you would have seen the external drive in the pictures.

http://www.channelmasterstore.com/v/vspfiles/assets/images/Specs_750x250.jpg

and

http://www.channelmasterstore.com/v/vspfiles/assets/images/acc750x200.jpg

Here are the three drives they recommended on the sale page "Seagate Models, STCD500102, STBU1000100, and STCA300010".

I'd shop around for them, and not buy from Channel Master. For example they want $159.99 for the 3-TB drive,that you can buy directly from Seagate for $119.99.

http://www.channelmasterstore.com/CM_7500_compatible_Seagate_Backup_Plus_1_TB_USB_3_p/stca3000101.htm

http://www.seagate.com/external-hard-drives/desktop-hard-drives/backup-plus-desk/?sku=STCA3000101

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post #237 of 16585 Old 12-17-2013, 05:10 AM
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Where did the $50 gift card come from and what promo code did you use to get the lifetime down to $400? Last I checked, $150 was the best price for the hardware and lifetime was $500, so, $650 for the same storage.

 

I priced matched Amazon at Bestbuy.com (via a call) at $150 and they still included the $50 gift card. PLSR coupon code for Lifetime at $400. Although I ended up returning the TiVo (local pickup). It had the same channel issue as WMC which the station as since resolved.


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post #238 of 16585 Old 12-17-2013, 05:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Charles R View Post

I priced matched Amazon at Bestbuy.com (via a call) at $150 and they still included the $50 gift card. PLSR coupon code for Lifetime at $400. Although I ended up returning the TiVo (local pickup). It had the same channel issue as WMC which the station as since resolved.
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Originally Posted by Charles R View Post

I priced matched Amazon at Bestbuy.com (via a call) at $150 and they still included the $50 gift card. PLSR coupon code for Lifetime at $400. Although I ended up returning the TiVo (local pickup). It had the same channel issue as WMC which the station as since resolved.
Well played. At this time, I don't think I could do as well. Right now, the best I could do is $550 ($100 off a Premiere) for a two tuner with 75hrs and lifetime. It would cost $350 for a comparable DVR+ right now.
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post #239 of 16585 Old 12-17-2013, 06:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post

TiVo will never have any "competitors" in the near future, because TiVo's main features are patented and can't be copied until those patents expire. Not everybody needs or wants what TiVo offers, so just because another DVR has different capabilities does not mean that it won't be useful.
I largely agree and patents aside, TiVo won't have any stand-alone DVR competitors at the high-end (yes Bruce, high-end) because TiVo is the only 3rd party DVR with cable card support (Moxi is dead) and advanced whole-home DVR network features. TiVo clearly caters to the cable market -- their first 4-tuner model was in the Premier line and was cable-only. Of the Roamio line only the lowest base model with 4 tuners supports OTA and they took away the combined OTA + cable functionality that previous models had -- Roamio basic is either/or. TiVo clearly views OTA as a marginal market to their bread-n-butter cable customers. One should expect this market strategy will probably continue into the future

The CM-7500 is clearly targeted at the OTA market and only the OTA market with the exclusion of any clear QAM cable tuner capability -- an incredibly wise move. They have come in at a price point to suit the notoriously cheap OTA users -- $300 can get you a dual-tuner 1TB DVR with bundled guide service. Just don't expect lots of firmware updates beyond what it takes to make a reasonably dependable DVR -- use the CM-7000 and CM-7400 as the examples here. If the CM-7500 catches on and becomes a major player in the OTA realm, one could see TiVo simply eliminating OTA support in the future.

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post #240 of 16585 Old 12-17-2013, 07:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Brudha View Post

This looks pretty slick but realistically what does this offer over the original PAL HD or a simple TiVo HD that can easily be picked up now for $200 to $250 with Lifetime service. With just 2 tuners its a bit limited.
If you can get a 3-tuner TiVo with Lifetime for $200 (or a 4-tuner for $250), go for it! Most would consider that a bargain.
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Originally Posted by Brudha View Post

The guide service is never going to come close to Tivo.
Come on; now you're just trolling. There's no way you could possibly know that, and it just sounds silly.
OK; I just blocked Brudha. I would've been interested in finding out why he felt this way but he's obviously not interested in a reasonable discussion. frown.gif
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