Homeworx HW-150PVR, Support and Discussion - Page 94 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #2791 of 2812 Old 01-30-2019, 09:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
This post is for @DoctorM and others interested in DD 5.1.

HW-180 owner JJA has been experiencing the "echo" bug on DD 5.1. He contacted Mediasonic andThe "incompatible HDMI" part is new info, and implies the problem is actually with Mediaonic's HDMI hardware rather than the HW180 specifically. If true that would explain why Mediasonic isn't trying to fix the bug; apparently the only fix would require new HDMI hardware and there's no way to program around it with firmware.

That would also imply that even the HW150 has the echo bug when using HDMI instead of coaxial audio. Has anyone experienced this?
I just checked on my HW150. If it's true that the firmware doesn't matter - it should make no difference that the 'Franken-iView' is running different firmware. I switched audio back and forth between PCM and Raw but didn't hear any difference. (Plus, I don't recall hearing anything like this while using the intended firmware prior).

I don't have a lot of faith in Mediasonic support's diagnostics and explanations. I suspect they (or him/her -- as I think it's only a single person) don't have a great understanding of the product and certainly don't use it -- simply collecting the shipments from China and passing them on.

I'm not sure 'incompatible HDMI' is any more of an explanation I believe than that somehow the HW150 has 'version 6 hardware' instead of 'version 5 hardware' .. (the explanation I got for why I couldn't get firmware from them).

It sounds a lot like 'Blinker Fluid' or tires needing the winter air changed out to summer air. :-)
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post #2792 of 2812 Old 01-30-2019, 02:56 PM
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All very true. One thing: the "echo" bug is intermittent. Usually DD 5.1 will play normally through HDMI for a while, until you start changing channels, start or stop time-shifting, and the like. (But often the same activities will also fix it once it starts.) So you may have to put it through a bit of a workout after switching on RAW mode.

JJA is going to ask Mediasonic for more info about the HDMI "incompatibility;" we'll see if they give him anything more specific.

Mediasonic's support seems to be very uneven. @Skitz1967 must have gotten a pretty good tech when he discussed firmware with them; the tech actually seemed not only to use the boxes, but also to experiment with them, and knew which firmware/hardware combos would cross-flash successfully. And Skitz1967 got HW180 firmware that I suppose he "shouldn't" have gotten, since he only had a HW150. But it all worked; in fact I think he used HW180 V11 on his HW150 for a while.

But most of them seem clueless, and won't offer any firmware other than the version for your specific box. Probably afraid of getting fired if they send you firmware and it bricks your box, and you return it for replacement or refund.
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post #2793 of 2812 Old 02-09-2019, 06:43 AM
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Is the problem of formatting (in this case a usb stick) using the homeworx and then your computer not being able to read off of it a known problem? @JHBrandt have you read or encountered this issue?
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post #2794 of 2812 Old 02-09-2019, 03:05 PM
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I think I've had that happen once, on an old HW-150, but it's generally worked fine for me. I thought that one time was just due to the USB stick getting corrupted.
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post #2795 of 2812 Old 03-10-2019, 09:37 PM
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Am I the only one shocked that this could be the only device manufactured in the last 20 years that doesn't self-adjust for daylight savings?
Sorry to vent, I missed a show tonight because I had forgotten that.
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post #2796 of 2812 Old 03-11-2019, 02:54 PM
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When I bought my first HW, I thought setting Daylight Saving "on" made it automatically adjust and "off" was only for areas that remain on standard time year-round. But of course, that fall, it turned out I was wrong - you have to turn it "on" and "off" yourself every time DST goes into or out of effect.

(BTW, I actually have a clock/radio that works the same way. You don't have to change the time manually, which was always a mess on those old clocks, but you do have to switch DST on/off manually!)

OTOH, considering the mess other devices such as the DTVPal have made of DST, and given the evident lack of competency of the MStar firmware developers, perhaps a manual setting is better than the alternative. Otherwise, we might have HW's that changed over in April and October!
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post #2797 of 2812 Old 04-28-2019, 01:56 PM
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Has anyone had any problems since the FCC repack?
My Fox station moved its antenna making it too weak to receive, but a formerly weaker Fox affiliate has expanded its range so it is now viable for me... except the HW won't receive it.

AntennaWeb shows the station in blue. When I 'manually search' for the station it shows 80% strength. I hit 'ok' and it lists the subchannels, says 'saving' it then drops back to the last station I was watching. If I try to go to the channel afterwards I get 'Invalid Channel'.

I tried a full rescan. I even reflashed the firmware up to v5.5.1 with the same result. Thoughts?

Edit: The repack is a bit of a crap salad. The following stations are all in range of my antenna...
Fox 29.1 has an RF Channel of 35.
WXEL 42.1 has an RF Channel of 29.
Ion 35.1 has an RF Channel of 21.

Last edited by DoctorM; 04-28-2019 at 02:15 PM.
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post #2798 of 2812 Old 04-28-2019, 04:11 PM
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If it lists the channels during a scan, it must be receiving the signal, but "invalid channel" implies there was no -1 subchannel saved....

If you press OK it will bring up the channel list - do you see the Fox station there? (It may not end in -1 as you'd expect.) If so, try selecting it from the list.

If it's not there, try a manual scan of RF 35.
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post #2799 of 2812 Old 04-29-2019, 04:01 PM
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That's it. Thanks, JHBrandt. A manual scan examines the RF channel, not the virtual channel. I quickly snapped a picture so I could see the subchannels before the screen disappeared.
Channel 29 was giving me:
001 WPBT-HD (2.1)
002 WXEL (42.1)
003 Create (2.2)
004 WPBTHC (2.3)
005 KIDS360 (2.4)
006 WURH (13.1 although AntennaWeb says it should be 25.1)

Manually entering 35 did finally get me Fox 29, unfortunately the signal is just as weak as the other Fox station (about 45%). I'll have to try a booster.

That said, I reached out to Mediasonic who tells me development of beta firmware for V5 has stopped. (They re-sent me v5.3, but considering 5.4.8 adds 12 hour time and 5.5.1 fixes the midnight bug, I'll stick with betas for now).
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post #2800 of 2812 Old 04-29-2019, 04:33 PM
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Sounds like Fox is just a weak signal. Try a preamp with low noise and modest gain. A Winegard "Boost" LNA-100 works pretty well for me; it's USB-powered and easy to stick right in front of the iView. If it makes the signals too strong (you'll know that happened if Fox gets worse instead of better), you can put an attenuator after the preamp to cut the signal back down a bit.

A cheap 3-way splitter makes a good attenuator. There's usually a "strong" output which is 3-4 dB below the input, and two "weak" outputs which are ~7 dB below the input, so you can try different levels of attenuation by simply moving a cable from one input to another.
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post #2801 of 2812 Old 05-05-2019, 09:45 PM
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I wanted to drop in and mention that I looked at AntennaWeb again and looked where the transmission towers of my two weakest stations had moved. Using that info I relocated my antenna (90 degrees) to another wall and gained about 15-20 percentage points on the signal strength, enough to get a solid picture.
I didn't try it before because I thought it might badly weaken the other stations, but it did not. Yay.
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post #2802 of 2812 Old 05-14-2019, 09:06 AM
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Howdy have not seen this thread in a while. Not sure if this is a sale: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...NUMKW22O&psc=1
Are these any better these days?
This one any good? https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...H5P0EYIZ&psc=1


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post #2803 of 2812 Old 05-14-2019, 01:34 PM
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The first one is the HW-180. There's even a thread for it here: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/42-hd...-180stb-6.html.

Don't know anything about the Koramzi, but all these boxes (Homeworx, iView, eMatic, etc.) are pretty similar. I'd prefer Homeworx over Koramzi just so I'd have access to any firmware updates. Mediasonic's support isn't very good, but at least it exists!

BTW there's a newer version of the HW-180 with a 2-year warranty at this Amazon page: https://www.amazon.com/Mediasonic-Ho.../dp/B07MFN8KZY. The new version has a decent tuner (Rafael Micro 836), and V13 firmware, which supports either 12- or 24-hour time format via a menu setting. (It's roughly on par with V5.4.8 firmware for the HW-150 model.)

The only real complaint I have with the HW-180 is the tiny remote, but the Koramzi, eMatic and iView 3200 all come with a similar tiny remote. The HW-150 comes with a slightly bigger remote but I don't like it much either. The only one that comes with a halfway decent remote is the iView 3500. If you get anything besides a 3500, consider getting a programmable or learning universal remote to use with it.
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post #2804 of 2812 Old 05-15-2019, 08:13 AM
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Since Homeworx seems to be backing away from their beta firmwares, if anyone is in need of the v5.5.1 let me know. That is supposed to fix the midnight bug (although I never tested it.)
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post #2805 of 2812 Old 09-30-2019, 07:19 AM
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I have this Homeworx PVR and it doesn't seem to work. What am I doing wrong?

* Most of the time when I set the timer it does not record. It seems like it is like an old VCR where if it's on it won't record if the timer time comes. The problem is it seems to be CONSTANTLY turning itself on. Every time I go to my theater room it's powered on. Even if I set the timer and power it off the timer doesn't work most of the time. Occasionally it does. It seems like this does not work on timer and has to be very carefully baby-sat; that is it will only record if I am there and I press "Rec".
* The recordings seem to randomly pick which audio stream to set as the first audio stream. When I play back the recording on my computer I get the Spanish language or English descriptive language track instead of the default English track. This is less of a PITA because I Plan to handbrake the videos and I can select.

I am VERY unhappy with this box. When it works - those rare occasions - it is great. I just missed recording the Ken Burns Country music series DESPITE setting multiple timers to record the episodes multiple times.

Are there any alternatives out there that actually work?

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post #2806 of 2812 Old 09-30-2019, 08:44 AM
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First, these boxes do record if powered on. It's not at all like a VCR.
Is this a HW-150PVR? Have you contacted the manufacturer?

It sounds like your USB storage may not be working well with the box. Either it's not particularly compatible or there might be a loose connection. What are you using?

Also, the first audio track is set by the broadcaster no the box. If you have the Option/Audio Language set to something besides English, it may be attempting to play a different audio track if present and then falling back to English if there are no other tracks available.

If you mean you are examining the stream and English is literally not higher on the list than other audio tracks, that is because of the broadcaster. The box doesn't reorder streams, it just saves the raw broadcast as it comes in.

Your complaints don't really coincide with anyone else's experience. You may have a bad box.
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post #2807 of 2812 Old 09-30-2019, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philip Hamm View Post
I have this Homeworx PVR and it doesn't seem to work. What am I doing wrong?

Are there any alternatives out there that actually work?
Can you let us know which version of the HW-150 you have? The firmware changes frequently.

Press Menu, go to System / Information and post what it displays.

Also, do you experience any power failures at home? The HW-150 is known to turn itself on after a power failure.

It's also been known to sometimes "forget" to turn itself back off after a timed recording. Do you record any channels other than PBS with it?

Regardless, it should make scheduled recordings whether it's on or off. If it's on, a warning box will pop up about a minute before a recording starts. If you aren't there to abort it, it will change the channel and start recording as scheduled.

Finally, have you noticed any recordings being scrambled or incorrectly deleted from the recording schedule?
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post #2808 of 2812 Old 09-30-2019, 11:48 AM
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Thumbs down

Quote:
Originally Posted by DoctorM View Post
First, these boxes do record if powered on. It's not at all like a VCR.
Is this a HW-150PVR? Have you contacted the manufacturer?
It is a 180. I have contacted the manufacturer. They say it is fine. "V11.3 is the latest on V11. No update required."

Quote:
Originally Posted by DoctorM View Post
It sounds like your USB storage may not be working well with the box. Either it's not particularly compatible or there might be a loose connection. What are you using?
The manufacturer suggested a self powered spinning disc, which is EDITlaughable. I don't think those have been sold for 10 years. IMPORTANT!!!! I'm using a USB powered 1/2 gig external spinning disk that I got from Amazon on Prime Day specifically for this box. I tried a few USB sticks and got jumpy performance with break-up. All that went away when I got this spinning USB disc. When it works, it works great. The video stream is perfect as it was when watching.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DoctorM View Post
Also, the first audio track is set by the broadcaster no the box. If you have the Option/Audio Language set to something besides English, it may be attempting to play a different audio track if present and then falling back to English if there are no other tracks available.
I have not changed any audio options.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoctorM View Post
If you mean you are examining the stream and English is literally not higher on the list than other audio tracks, that is because of the broadcaster. The box doesn't reorder streams, it just saves the raw broadcast as it comes in.

Your complaints don't really coincide with anyone else's experience. You may have a bad box.
Maybe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
Can you let us know which version of the HW-150 you have? The firmware changes frequently.

Press Menu, go to System / Information and post what it displays.

Also, do you experience any power failures at home? The HW-150 is known to turn itself on after a power failure.
Firmware above. Power failures are incredibly rare here; almost never happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
It's also been known to sometimes "forget" to turn itself back off after a timed recording. Do you record any channels other than PBS with it?
No. I specifically bought this to record PBS - Ken Burns documentaries and other interesting programming (music, etc). It failed for the American Experience Moon documentaries and it failed for "Country Music". I'm done with it. I can not rely on this to work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
Regardless, it should make scheduled recordings whether it's on or off. If it's on, a warning box will pop up about a minute before a recording starts. If you aren't there to abort it, it will change the channel and start recording as scheduled.

Finally, have you noticed any recordings being scrambled or incorrectly deleted from the recording schedule?
I went to the basement the morning of the recordings on Sunday - it was supposed to record four episodes. I brought up the EPG and they all were listed with a little red dot icon on the EPG. I figured "OK it's going to record". Later that night I checked the disk and nothing recorded. It just doesn't work. Timer recordings just do not work on this box. I can not count on this to record unless I am sitting there hitting record button myself.

I gave up. This box is a nice tuner with pause, etc. for my basement - I need that and it has a great picture. But as a PVR I'm not going to use it any more. I bought a TV tuner for my Synology NAS. A more expensive more complicated solution but hopefully it will work.

Philip Hamm

Last edited by Philip Hamm; 10-04-2019 at 11:56 AM.
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post #2809 of 2812 Old 09-30-2019, 02:40 PM
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It is a 180. I have contacted the manufacturer. They say it is fine. "V11.3 is the latest on V11. No update required."
I checked the HW-180 thread (most folks don't even know there is one) and the latest firmware version is V13.1, but Mediasonic doesn't like folks to change the "major" firmware version when they update, so the latest they'll offer you is V11.3. Still, that's reasonably new. It's the HW-180's equivalent to V5.3 on the HW-150. Has a few bugs but timed recordings should be working.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
I just scored a copy of HW180 firmware V13.1 & installed it on my iVIEW 3200. It works fine on the 3200 (have to use my HW180 remote, of course).

Mediasonic fixed the TV List bug from V11 and V13, but to do it they just made the OK and TV List buttons do the same thing! To be fair this is how the HW150 works (its remote control doesn't have a TV List button, so the OK button has to do double duty on the HW150). So if you enter a channel number and press either button, it works as if you pressed OK; but if you hold the button down a bit too long, the TV List will pop up as the button sends its signal repeatedly. I guess that's an improvement, but not quite how I would expect it to work. You have to learn to press and release OK quickly (and do it again if it didn't "take.")

It has the 12-hour time format, but there doesn't seem to be an option to switch back to the 24-hour time format used in V11 and earlier firmware. Most folks prefer 12-hour time; the only problem is the AMs & PMs eat up 4 characters in the EPG list, shortening the program titles by an equivalent amount. Usually you can still tell what each show in the EPG is anyhow, though, so I guess it's no big deal.

The "midnight" scheduling bug is still present, so V13.1 seems to be roughly on par with V5.4.8 for the HW150. Based on what I see so far, it looks like HW150 firmware versions 5.4.8 and 5.5.1 should work on the new HW180s (with an HW150 remote, of course). V5.5.1 fixes the "midnight" bug, but Mediasonic says it's a beta version, and there have been some reports of other issues with it on the HW150 thread.

Unfortunately the "channel rescan" bug is still present too. This is the most serious bug with all HomeWorx firmware as it can make scheduled recordings unreliable. Because of this bug I'll be reverting to iVIEW's firmware on my 3200.
Mediasonic won't give you a copy of V13.1, but if you want to try it and see if it makes any difference, PM me and I'll email you a copy (or I can give you a Firefox Send link. FF Send only gives you 24 hours to download it, but if you miss the deadline I'll just give you another link).
Quote:
Originally Posted by J J A View Post
I got a copy of the HW150 firmware onto my HW180 and it's been working mostly great (I downloaded 150 remote codes to my Harmony). I haven't had the echo audio problem, have consistent DD5.1 over HDMI (where available from the channel) and recordings playback in 5.1. Edit: I am using 5.5.1 and "midnight" recording works as well as 24-hour time. I have seen the "channel rescan" problem with both firmwares. Secondary hidden channels (same virtual channel) have become available (or not) in the main channel list (instead of just via "All TV List"). So far I've lost only one primary channel since my last manual rescan, but this has been a persistent problem since my local channels have been moving around to poorly-received frequencies and obstructed transmitter mountains.
If you have a universal remote that can send HW-150 or iView codes, you can try HW-150 or iView firmware instead. Let me know....
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post #2810 of 2812 Old 10-01-2019, 06:34 AM
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Who knew there was a 180 thread?

Thanks for the info but I'm not going to do anything with this device any more. I ordered a USB DTV tuner and I'm going to try to do the PVR stuff with my Synology NAS from here on out. Makes more sense because all these recordings end up there eventually any way. The 180 is a fine tuner, and it is super nice to have pause, etc. ability with live TV. I run a projector that doesn't have a built-in tuner (I couldn't accommodate the connectivity anyway even if it did) so I need a box to be just a tuner and for the price I paid for the Homeworx box I'm happy to have just that capability. The picture from the Homeworx box is fantastic.

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post #2811 of 2812 Old 10-01-2019, 07:54 PM
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You didn't say, but is your attached hard drive use external power or does it draw from the USB port?
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post #2812 of 2812 Old 10-04-2019, 11:53 AM
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Talking

Thanks to Vincent at Mediasonic I was able to fix the problem!!!!!!
Quote:
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You didn't say, but is your attached hard drive use external power or does it draw from the USB port?
I was using a USB-powered hard disk (I did say that above) and THAT WAS THE PROBLEM!!! It worked perfectly for recording while watching, and as a buffer for the tuner. However, that was killing my timed recordings.

I replaced it with a self-powered disk drive - a 2TB drive in a PROBOX enclosure, as it happens also from Mediasonic - the Mediasonic ProBox N37-SU3 3.5' SATA HDD External Enclosure - USB 3.0 which is a GREAT little HDD enclosure if you need one. That completely fixed the problem. No problem at all any more. I set some timers today and it worked perfectly.

Happy that the problem was user error and I was able to fix it!!!!

I did spend a little unnecessary money on a TV tuner for my PC (doesn't work in my NAS), but I've wanted one of those for a long time anyway so it's not a big loss.
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Last edited by Philip Hamm; 10-04-2019 at 11:57 AM.
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