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post #31 of 87 Old 10-25-2017, 04:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tachmn View Post
It appears to be something with the newscast.

Tonight it was preempted by the World Series. When I started a manual recording around the time I usually do, the recording started.

I then waited until the newscast started after the game. Manual recording got the Unknown error, leaving. I then unplugged the coax, tried starting a manual recording with no signal. Unknown error, leaving. While the coax was still unplugged, tuned to a different RF channel, then switched back. This time the manual recording started.

Weird.
Yes it does sound like some sort of weird problem. You are probably on to something, in that the station may be sending out something odd for that newscast; but that alone sounds very odd.

My Guessing:

Perhaps change the timer/clock set up on the box. Auto, DST, etc. then try the manual set up for timer/clock and then back again? Also, perhaps a full reset of the Terk? With manual clock/timer it might bypass what the station is sending out for time and maybe fix the problem? Just all guessing on my part.

I have Lethal Weapon set up for Weekly record. Of course last night was the first game of the World Series, so it recorded that instead. I compared the FOX stated time on the Terk this morning the with my computer. They both showed the same time. I am playing the full hour back for kicks. My reason for doing this I am comparing the tuner's ability to hold on to the station in this high wind. So far the tuner quality seems to be the same as the Panasonic 800U and significantly better than the Tuner in the TiVo Premier. The TiVo has the weakest tuner of any device I have owned.
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post #32 of 87 Old 10-25-2017, 10:02 PM
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Tried Auto/Manual Time Offsets. Changed the Country Region or Time Zone. But since there is no internal clock, the EPG followed along, only the time was different. (With the DTV converters I have, if I mess up the time the EPG is also off).

As expected, Unknown error, leaving.

I tried power cycling before, no change. Swapping disk drives, etc.

The only workaround is unplug the coax (no signal). Switch to 25-2. Start the recording (stuck at 0:00:00). Stop the recording. Switch to 25-1. Start the recording (stuck at 0:00:00). Plug in the coax to get the signal back. Recording time now increments, recording 25-1.

But this workaround will be of no use for a timer recording.

If I stop the working recording and restart it, back to Unknown error, leaving.

It is somehow EPG related, the World Series went extra innings, so it ran into the delayed newscast time slot. No difference. As soon as the EPG switched to the next show, recording worked, even though the World Series was still running. When the actual newscast finally started, recording worked.

I don't see anything unusual in the actual newscast EPG listing.

One thing I will try next is recording to a USB3 pen drive. I doubt it will make a difference, but will eliminate technology.

There is a sister station of 25 (identical programming), but that only comes in with good Tropo. If that happens (rare) during the newscast, will also be something to try.
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post #33 of 87 Old 10-27-2017, 04:37 AM
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tachmn

It is almost sounding like a defect in the Terk box you have? It is very strange for sure.

One thing I do not understand is when your are saying: "As expected, Unknown error, leaving" What do you mean by "leaving"? I have obviously missed your meaning from the above thread. Sorry, I am little slow at times.
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post #34 of 87 Old 10-30-2017, 08:58 PM
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It is not a problem with a specific Terk box, it happens to both of mine.

And the error started to appear in September. I had done some recordings prior to that without problems.

The actual Terk error message is "Unknown Error, Leaving..." when starting a recording (manual or timer).

The manual on page 31 implies a "Communication error with USB device." But I can record on other channels, including 25-2 without problems. So it can't be that.

Didn't make any difference trying to record to a pen drive (Lexar USB 3).
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post #35 of 87 Old 11-01-2017, 06:38 AM
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Ok, I understand what you and the Terk box are saying now. (The word "leaving" is that is is leaving/quiting the recording or playback process because of the USB communiction issue)


My suggestion:

Locate a good 3.0 (or above) 32Gb flash drive (of 16Gb if you do not have it). Format it to NTFS on a computer.

Unplug Terk for a couple of minutes.

Put in flash drive.

Reset Terk to Factory default.

Set it up to record the "one" program (nonthing else) that is causing the problem.

While it record the program now? y or n

--------------------------

Side note: The Terk I have is V3 software, if you would like I can get the details to the hardware version etc. If that sheds any light on the issue.

Side Note: Also in reading all the trouble shooting stuff at the back of the manual and inference can be drawn that the Terk is very sensitive with the USB device (what ever it may be) in regard to power up/down - recording/playback, etc.


Side Note:

1. The 32Gb Flash Drive I use would record and playback ok, but it had these problems: During playback about every 5-10 minutes it would garble the picture with giant marco blocking that last about a half second. It would often have lip sync issues, which would come and go.
2. The antique 500GB Seagate drive would record and play back ok, but it would have power up and power down issues and it would get its power on and off reversed at times. It did this even though it had its own external power supply. That particular drive also did that years ago when it was connected to a computer for back up; it had always been that way.
3. The new 1TB portable Seagate Expansion Drive so far has none of the above issues. My understanding it is supposed to have one of the lowest USB power requirments available (so they say). Once in a great while it will have an lip sync issue; but a rewind-play will fix it instantly (my TiVo does that too). After about two weeks use it has always power on/off correctly. I plan to use it a lot more now because our 2 tuner Tivo does not have enough space for the programs we want to record.
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post #36 of 87 Old 11-02-2017, 06:23 AM
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I am starting to use the Terk more and more.

Last night I recorded 4 CBS shows in a row (back to back), following by 1 ABC show. One part of the test is to see if it works as it should, particularly the more I load up the 1TB drive. All of these recordings to date have been set up via the EPG method.

I will continue with those test, most likely setting up a lot of "weekly" recordings. One reason is to see if it works, the other is to take much of the burden off the Tivo - the 500G drive is not big enough.

Problems so far:

1. Yes on the CBS recordings I am missing between 15 seconds up to 1 min. of the recording at the start of the show. It appears that our local CBS is both late with the program name and time up to 1 min.

If I record via EPG (which can always edit names later); I will automatically get the program name in the "list" of recordings for playback later - very nice. BUT if I manually adjust the EPG start time by 1 min (easy to do), then the incorrect (previous) program name is listed in the playback list(s).

Of course at each time I manually adjusted schedule time, I can always come back and change the program name to the correct name. It is easy enough to do, BUT there should be nicer or automatic way for that to be handled.

Again one of my goals is to "unburden" the Tivo and that alone implies I could have 20-50 recorded programs in the Terk. That is a lot of renaming to do, if I actually want to catch the first minute of a show (which would be nice).

So far I am not noticing this problem on Fox, NBC, or ABC; but I have not owned the Terk long enough to know for sure.

Obviously, each local station is controlling the "names" and the "time" to the OTA customers. It would be nice if they were more on point and this would not be a problem.

One possible solution on the timer (fake clock); would be set up the manual timer and not use automatic time. Essentially setting the time forward by one minute, means the recording would start a minute earlier - problem solved. But I do not know yet, if the box has to stay on full time to do that or if the timer can keep fake clock time when in standby. Also, there is the issue of timer/clock drift - a common issue with many cheap products. Even so, the recorded program list would have the previous program name listed - which is incorrect.
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post #37 of 87 Old 11-02-2017, 01:37 PM
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There is no timer in these Mstar boxes. They all take the time as supplied in the station's PSIP info. Whatever time is reported in the stream -- that's the time the box uses. I had a problem with one of my stations consistently having time reported in their PSIP anywhere from 2 minutes slow to 5 minutes fast. It took months of communicating to the station before the time reported by the station was actually correct (or at least close enough).
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post #38 of 87 Old 11-02-2017, 08:43 PM
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How many days into the future will the EPG go? Mine just goes out 2 days. Also, the latest software I have is Apr. 20 2017-17:32:26-V3. Is this the latest? I can't find out from TERK/VOXX web site. Thanks
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post #39 of 87 Old 11-03-2017, 06:15 AM
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Yes EPG data is 2 days typical.

By using the timer button, you can add, change, or delete any of the previously scheduled programs to record OR set up new ones entirely; this includes creating your on schedule well into the future. I suppose by weeks and months. Also, using the edit button while reviewing the up coming schedule recordings will take you to the same location (that is EPG>Book List>Edit=timer button) to make the same add, change, delete features available. Timer Button is simple a short cut to get their.

Details from the Terk box I have:

SW Version: April 20 2017-17:32:26-V3
HW Version: ABL7802-R836-A


AFAIK - Terk/VOXX has not made anything newer or posted anything on their web site.

Regarding the stations PSIP time data, there is also some time drift present as well, this is very common from all stations.

I recorded three CBS programs again last night using only the EPG data (no adjustments). Each of the three programs were late to start from 22 seconds to 58 seconds. Basically, a 1 min adjustment would fix all my CBS timing issues.

Last edited by HoustonPerson; 06-02-2018 at 11:02 AM.
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post #40 of 87 Old 11-03-2017, 11:37 AM
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Limitations and Bugs:

LIMITATION:
Unlike TiVo or Sony DHG (and most others), you cannot playback a show while recording another.

Minor Limitation:
While watching Live TV, when a schedule recording is due to start, it will ask you to confirm. If you confirm to record, it will do just that. So if your are watching FOX Live and it is time to start recording on CBS; you confirm it, it will change stations and start recording CBS.

BUG:
If you are currently watching a show in Playback (from your recordings), and it is time to start recording another show from your previous schedule; it will ask you to confirm. However on my Terk, regardless of how I answer the question, it fails to record the previous scheduled recording. The playback stops and the Terk returns to the previous channel station-Live TV (not recording). This is either a BUG or I am doing something wrong.
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post #41 of 87 Old 11-03-2017, 07:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post
Yes EPG data is 2 days typical.

By using the timer button, you can add, change, or delete any of the previously scheduled programs to record OR set up new ones entirely; this includes creating your on schedule well into the future. I suppose by weeks and months. Also, using the edit button while reviewing the up coming schedule recordings will take you to the same location (that is EPG>Book List>Edit=timer button) to make the same add, change, delete features available. Timer Button is simple a short cut to get their.

Details from the Terk box I have:

SW Version: April 20 2017-17:32:26-V6
HW Version: ABL7802-R836-A


AFAIK - Terk/VOXX has not made anything newer or posted anything on their web site.

Regarding the stations PSIP time data, there is also some time drift present as well, this is very common from all stations.

I recorded three CBS programs again last night using only the EPG data (no adjustments). Each of the three programs were late to start from 22 seconds to 58 seconds. Basically, a 1 min adjustment would fix all my CBS timing issues.
Thanks-Where can I find the SW version you have? Can't find on TERK/VOXX Web site.
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post #42 of 87 Old 11-04-2017, 04:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coastercrazies View Post
Thanks-Where can I find the SW version you have? Can't find on TERK/VOXX Web site.
I just bought the Terk from Fry's about 2 weeks ago, and this is how it came.

As far as I know, Terk/VOXX has not listed this SW on their web site yet? I do not know if they will. You might be able to email them to see if you can get it OR perhaps they might even have a newer one than the one in my box (since it is dated April 2017)?

I have been experimenting again with the Timer (fake clock), and other settings attempting to figure out how to solve and sync the recording schedule time with the real time required so that the first minute of the program is not lost and the correct name is used for the program.

Settings>Time offers both Auto and Manual. Manual is not really a clock setting (since there is no clock in the box), it only allows to manually change the other settings for the time (zone, daylight, etc, GMT offset etc.). So I am attempting to find a station PSIP that might be one or two minutes ahead, and then select Manual under the Settings>Time and thus eliminate the difference each stations time may be presenting. This will probably not work LOL
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post #43 of 87 Old 11-10-2017, 08:56 AM
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Hi gang, newbie here. I'm looking for a standalone dvr for my brother who has Charter Spectrum cable, and I was wondering ifthis Terk unit will record signals from the Charter box or if I'll need to look at something else...and does anyone have any suggestions, if the latter is the case? Thanks in advance, and hope I didn't hijack this thread, but Christmas IS coming...
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post #44 of 87 Old 11-12-2017, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coastercrazies View Post
How many days into the future will the EPG go? Mine just goes out 2 days. Also, the latest software I have is Apr. 20 2017-17:32:26-V3. Is this the latest? I can't find out from TERK/VOXX web site. Thanks
Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post
Yes EPG data is 2 days typical.

Details from the Terk box I have:

SW Version: April 20 2017-17:32:26-V63
HW Version: ABL7802-R836-A
Hi folks, I just stumbled on this thread. I have some experience with MStar boxes (iView and HomeWorX) but not this particular one.

I noticed the thread starter didn't post any pics, so for the curious, here's a pic of the box and remote from Terk's web site:

Looks much like the HomeWorX HW-130 to me. Here's a pic of that (from Amazon) for comparison:

The quotes above caught my eye because both iView and HomeWorX will only display 24 hours of EPG, even if the station broadcasts more (despite the fact that they are consistently advertised as supporting up to 7 days of EPG). Nor have I heard any owners of other MStar boxes (RCA, CM, eMatic) say their box could show more than one day. So 2 days of EPG would be an improvement and a unique advantage for the Terk. Edit: Oops - turns out the Terk's EPG is 24 hours too. (The 2 days referred to above were today and tomorrow.) Also looks like V6 was a typo; the date & time match CoasterCrazies's V3, and two days earlier HoustonPerson had said he had V3 too. Oh, well....

Last edited by JHBrandt; 05-28-2018 at 12:49 PM.
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post #45 of 87 Old 11-12-2017, 07:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GLT54 View Post
Hi gang, newbie here. I'm looking for a standalone dvr for my brother who has Charter Spectrum cable, and I was wondering if this Terk unit will record signals from the Charter box or if I'll need to look at something else...and does anyone have any suggestions, if the latter is the case? Thanks in advance, and hope I didn't hijack this thread, but Christmas IS coming...
I'd bet the answer is no. These boxes are designed to work directly with the RF signal, not the outputs of a cable box.

If the Terk is like other MStar boxes, it can tune and record unencrypted digital cable channels (hooking it directly to the cable and not using the cable box). But your brother may not have any of those. Even if he does, none may be worth recording. Edit: The Terk is OTA only. If you need a box for unencrypted digital cable channels, consider the iView instead.

Your question is quite common; I'm surprised there isn't a sticky addressing it. Short answer: if the cable box has composite or component video and analog audio outputs, you may have a chance.

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post #46 of 87 Old 11-13-2017, 05:46 AM
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JHBrandt,

Thanks for posting pictures of the Terk. I just assumed everyone knew what it looked like from the Terk/Voxx website.

Generally, overall the Terk is ok. To be sure it is no TiVo LOL.

I do hope to post a very small review, in the next month or so. It does have a couple of bugs (I can live with it), a design flaw or two (IMO).

My single biggest complaint is not being able to watch a recorded show while it is recording another. Basically, for the non-informed, this means you can not watch a recorded show in "prime time" and record another at the same "prime time". So in that respect it is like an old-time VCR; it can only do one thing at a time.

In regard to my own post above regarding "sound" settings; I currently have it set to "off". To me, that seems to be better, then the PCM or RAW setting when connected directly to our Panasonic 800U. The "info" button does display "Dolby Sound" trademark but I have no idea if this is actually true or not, because it is not connected to a high quality AVR (Denon or whatever) for confirmation.
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post #47 of 87 Old 11-13-2017, 08:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post
My single biggest complaint is not being able to watch a recorded show while it is recording another. Basically, for the non-informed, this means you can not watch a recorded show in "prime time" and record another at the same "prime time". So in that respect it is like an old-time VCR; it can only do one thing at a time.
The HomeWorX and iView have the same restriction. It seems the firmware's NTFS drivers are limited to opening only one file at a time. If you're recording, you can "chase play" the recording you're making (just press Play) but you can't get to the menu to play a different recording

Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post
In regard to my own post above regarding "sound" settings; I currently have it set to "off". To me, that seems to be better, then the PCM or RAW setting when connected directly to our Panasonic 800U. The "info" button does display "Dolby Sound" trademark but I have no idea if this is actually true or not, because it is not connected to a high quality AVR (Denon or whatever) for confirmation.
That setting should affect audio sent through the HDMI port, but shouldn't affect the analog audio at all. PCM should decode the Dolby Digital audio the station broadcasts and down-mix it to stereo, while RAW should send the Dolby Digital audio to your TV or AVR untouched. But if you don't have a 5.1 speaker system, the TV will down-mix the audio to stereo anyway, so the only difference would be that in RAW mode you couldn't control volume with the Terk. (Mute still works, though.)

The HomeWorX and iView reportedly have a bug that down-mixes the audio to stereo when playing back a recording, regardless of the setting, so it's likely the Terk has that bug too. (On those boxes there's a workaround by changing the recording file's extension on a PC, then playing it as a "movie." Edit: But the Terk doesn't have an option to play movies or videos other than its own recordings.) But like you, I don't use an AVR so it doesn't matter - it's all stereo to me.

Not sure what "off" would do. Neither my HomeWorX nor iView has that option. (Edit: I just discovered my iView with the "1511" firmware does have that option! But I still can't tell what it does.) Surely it doesn't turn the HDMI audio completely off? Not sure why someone would want to do that

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post #48 of 87 Old 11-13-2017, 01:59 PM
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JHBrandt,

Thanks for the feedback.

The Terk has three digital audio setting to choose from: PCM, RAW, and OFF. I can only guess that RAW would let 5.1 Dolby pass through (untouched) but that is a guess on my part, since I cannot test it. Thus OFF may be forcing stereo out the HDMI?

I sense no difference in sound quality on the RAW settings when compared to the OFF setting for sound. Of course this is only stereo to the 800U TV. On the PCM setting I would at times (maybe 10%) get a lip sync issue; very minor, most would not notice. And it also very slightly muddy sounding with the PCM. My wife could not tell a difference on either. Our 800U does have a fairly good sound system with the 4 speakers built in; a tad better than most flat screens.

The only thing a potential buyer should know: The Terk, and maybe other similar brands, are better than the old time VCR in that it is doing HD over HDMI with 1080p etc (and maybe real 5.1 sound?). But it is still a far cry from being a TiVo; multiple tuners, season (one) pass, etc. Another way to look at it, it is a toy to play with.
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post #49 of 87 Old 11-14-2017, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post
I have been experimenting again with the Timer (fake clock), and other settings attempting to figure out how to solve and sync the recording schedule time with the real time required so that the first minute of the program is not lost and the correct name is used for the program.

I am attempting to find a station PSIP that might be one or two minutes ahead, and then select Manual under the Settings>Time and thus eliminate the difference each stations time may be presenting. This will probably not work LOL
Probably not, but I have a suggestion that might: if you can find a station (call it station A) whose PSIP is one or two minutes ahead, make sure the Terk is tuned to station A before your recording on the other station (call it station B) starts. That way, the Terk would use station A's clock to determine when to start recording station B.

You could even set up a dummy recording on station A a few minutes before the "real" recording on station B, just to force the Terk to tune to station A first. (Of course, you'd have to delete those dummy recordings every so often.)
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post #50 of 87 Old 11-14-2017, 01:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post
Last week I started with an HP USB Flash Drive 3.0 32MB (speed about 100MBs). Generally, it did seem to be ok except occasionally there would be some "blocking" in picture about a half a second every 10-15 minutes or so.
This problem is common with thumb drives. Most cannot sustain the write speed needed to record HD video (even if the read speed is way more than enough), so every so often a few frames get dropped. Once every 10-15 minutes is pretty good, though.

I and others have had good luck with SanDisk's Ultra 32, 64, and 128GB drives. Some have reported good results with their Cruzer drives too.
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The Flash Drive would seem to have the tiniest about of "ringing" - tiny sharp close ghost around items. Now the picture appears to clear and clean with the Seagate.
I haven't heard that before but it doesn't surprise me. These boxes seem to be a bit susceptible to interference produced by whatever's plugged into the USB port. With a thumb drive, there's usually no cable; thus, no way to move it away from the box if interference is a problem.
Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post
Here is something I noticed today with the Terk TUNVR1 tuner: It appears it can also "almost" pickup over the air scrambled signals. I was just going through each station one by one via the channel up button. The TV, the Sony DVR, the TiVo all stop at station 68-5 (Dallas, TX). The Terk did that too; but after 68-5 it went to 68-11 through 68-21 (or something). There it listed others like Showtime, Epix, and a whole bunch of the "pay for" stations etc. The Terk would play the audio to each station but there was no picture. When you would hit the info button, it would give all the details (like playing a Batman movie etc); but instead of a picture it said in the middle of the screen: Scrambled.
Discovered the same thing with my iView. Those are "Airbox" channels; seems Airbox encrypts the video but not the audio! So you can't watch them, but you can listen to them....

Unfortunately Airbox ceased operating in my area (Dallas/Ft. Worth) so there's nothing for me to listen to anymore Maybe they're still on in Houston though.
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post #51 of 87 Old 11-15-2017, 07:14 AM
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JHBrandt,

Thanks again. Actually my name HoustonPerson is a misnomer, we have actually lived in Dallas for just over 5 years now; close to White Rock.

Later I may get back to test the 68-11 to 68-21 airbox things again. It is not really important to me since there were no video, just sound. Just another one of those interesting anomaly things. What was funny about it, the EPG was listing the program details, it would have been nice to actually get the video too. LOL
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post #52 of 87 Old 11-15-2017, 08:34 PM
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During the first week, the recorded program list (PVR list) only reflected station call letters, date, time etc. During the last two days it is now shows the actual names for recorded shows (i.e. Lethal Weapon).
That is another advantage the Terk has over iView and HomeWorX. Those boxes always use station call letters, date, and time for their recordings. Many users have wanted better recording names, but so far no luck from either iView or HomeWorX. I even tried the latest iView firmware (which I hate because tuning channels by number is broken in that version) but it still names recordings the same way.

Terk sounds more and more interesting; unfortunately the $30 introductory prices seem to be a thing of the past. Everyone is charging $50 except Amazon, who is charging like $47.

Also, the TUNVR1 page at the Terk website shows "no downloads available." It doesn't look like they post firmware updates any more. You're stuck with the firmware you got on the box you bought, I guess
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post #53 of 87 Old 11-17-2017, 05:35 AM
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Terk sounds more and more interesting; unfortunately the $30 introductory prices seem to be a thing of the past. Everyone is charging $50 except Amazon, who is charging like $47.

I think ? Fry's regular price is $40 (retail $50); but it should be every other month they will put it on sale for $29.95. You would have to be on their daily special email to be aware of it. The Fry's by me, had about 50 of them in stock two months ago. Funny thing, not a single employee in the store knew a thing about it, so it took me about 30 min. to find them. LOL If I recall correctly, there is a very small row of a bunch of different brand digital converter boxes - that is the location of the Terks - among the converter boxes.
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post #54 of 87 Old 11-17-2017, 11:16 AM
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Sorry for the quick side-diversion on the terk topic -- but I was looking at Fry's when I noticed in the seemingly never-ending parade of these MStar-based boxes (Iview, Mediasonic, Terk, ViewTV, RCA, CM, Sunkey, iKonvert, Axess, Lutema, etc) there was a brand that I hadn't heard of before by the name of 'Naxa'. I went to their website and sure enough - there are more models out there based on the ol' MStar box. I don't know how updated they may or may not be. I downloaded a couple of their user manuals and they still refer to NTSC broadcasts in the user menus. :-)

http://www.naxa.com/products/televis...top-boxes.html
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post #55 of 87 Old 11-17-2017, 01:09 PM
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Also in the specs on their website! But despite the claim, I'm skeptical that any of these boxes can tune NTSC analog signals. (Would be useful for some cable systems, though....)

"Naxa" sounds familiar. I'm sure I've seen their boxes on a Web page somewhere before, but the ones you linked to don't look familiar to me. (The NT-53 looks like a slightly sleeker version of my iView 3200, though. Only difference is the Naxa's RF modulator's output channel is menu-controlled; the iView's is controlled by a hardware switch.)

Edit: Found it. A post by Satpro referencing the NT-52 was quoted here, although the original post appears to have been deleted for some reason: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/42-hdt...l#post30322234

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post #56 of 87 Old 11-18-2017, 10:03 PM
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Quick note on retail store availability: Wife and I drove an hour for some holiday shopping today. One of the places we stopped was Menards ... where, while she was in the 'Enchanted Forest' named Christmas Tree section (swear to God ... that's what they call it), I was picking up an RCA flat antenna. I happened to notice that the Terk Tunvr1 was on the shelf in the TV accessories aisle. They had it priced about $45 and had about a half-dozen on the shelf.
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post #57 of 87 Old 12-04-2017, 06:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eherberg View Post
Quick note on retail store availability: Wife and I drove an hour for some holiday shopping today. One of the places we stopped was Menards ... where, while she was in the 'Enchanted Forest' named Christmas Tree section (swear to God ... that's what they call it), I was picking up an RCA flat antenna. I happened to notice that the Terk Tunvr1 was on the shelf in the TV accessories aisle. They had it priced about $45 and had about a half-dozen on the shelf.
Local Menards has some for $49.87, not much of a discount.

But Menards frequently has an 11% rebate (merchandise check) sale. And there is one this week.

Too soon to know if they will have a normal sale on the Terk. They occasionally have non-rebate sales on the RCA stuff.
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post #58 of 87 Old 12-04-2017, 06:35 PM
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Finally got by Fry's today. The bad news is, their Terks are up to $50 now too. The good news (for me) was that they had an open-box Terk for only $38. That was just cheap enough to entice me to pick it up. It has V3 firmware.

One nice thing: it came with a (short; about 4 feet) HDMI cable! That may explain some of the price difference. Most of these boxes only come with composite cables.

A few quick notes:

  • It's about the same size as my iView 3200, except a bit less tall. (The iView's extra height makes room for a couple of extra outputs on the iView.)
  • The remote is similar to the one used by the HW-130 (and HW-180): the layout is virtually identical, but the Terk remote seems a bit better made. The Terk and HW-180 remotes even use the same remote codes, although some of the buttons are labeled differently, so if you try to operate the Terk with the HW-180 remote, the buttons function as they're labeled on the Terk remote, not the HW remote.
  • The menu has an option the iView doesn't have: Auto Scan Add Channels. That's nice for folks using an antenna with a rotator; on the iView, you have to scan in channels manually, one at a time, after rotating the antenna.
  • The Terk eliminates the iView's vestigial "radio" feature. Early versions of the iView classified audio-only channels, such as 48-5 in DFW, as "radio" channels. Newer versions such as my 3200 don't do this, so the "radio" channel list is always empty; yet the radio list still appears in the iView displays.
  • OTOH the iView has a couple of nice menu features the Terk doesn't, such as menu transparency and a choice of 12- or 24-hour time (nice because the iView hasn't quite gotten all the bugs out of 12-hour time yet).
  • The Terk also seems to lack the iView's media player functions; at least, I can't find them. That is surprising.
  • The tuner seems to be a bit less sensitive than the iView's. The Terk failed to pick up channels 20 and 44 during the initial scan. Channel 20 at least should have been plenty strong enough to pick up.
  • Despite earlier reports, the EPG on my Terk appears limited to 24 hours, same as my iView.
  • Disappointingly, the Terk has a few common Mstar firmware bugs:
    • If you press Timer then 1 to schedule a recording from scratch, you may not be able to select some channels for recording. When scrolling through the channel numbers, the box often gets mixed up and either skips some channels or loops back instead of continuing forward. Luckily this isn't a big deal - just schedule recordings from the EPG instead.
    • If a station's first channel doesn't end in -1 (even if that's only because you deleted or skipped it), you can't tune to the lowest remaining channel by entering only the station number. You must enter the '-' and subchannel number,
    • A more serious bug is that if anything changes in a station's PSIP, the Terk will rescan the station's frequency the next time you tune to any channel on that station. Any of that station's channels you deleted come back; channels marked "favorite" or "skip" lose those marks; any custom channel order is lost; and any scheduled recordings for that station are lost or garbled.
    Every Mstar box I've tried so far has the first bug, and most have the other two. My iView doesn't have the last two bugs though.
  • I tried a recording on the Terk. The file name didn't include the show title as I'd hoped, but there were two dashes between the channel ID and the date instead of one, making me think the show title was "supposed" to go in between them. Could this be a bug that was fixed in a later firmware version? (I wish I could get ahold of V6, but the TUNVR1 web page still says "no downloads available" )

Last edited by JHBrandt; 04-21-2018 at 05:11 PM.
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post #59 of 87 Old 12-07-2017, 09:19 AM
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Yes correct, the EPG is normally a max of about 22-23 hours; I meant to go back and correct my post. The reason I had said 2 days previously, was because I could see two days listed; but that was because I was looking at a few ending hours of one day and the EPG would list the next day shows to record.

It does have seveal little bugs. I still have not had the opportunity to write up a mini review; here is a sloppy draft:

Sometimes it will miss recording a show; less than 5%. This may only be a problem using the EPG method of recording, because of timing (clock) differences between the stations.

Sometimes it will extend the recording time unnecessarily. Example, one of the 30 minutes shows actually recorded for 2.5 hours.

If you have minor dropouts on signal, the sound volume may not come back to full strength; that is cut in half. The only way to get it back the full volume is to cancel the playback, then start the program again and use the GoTo button to recover where you left off

It appears the only real way to assure getting start of every show is to use the manual record (timer) and start the program 1 or 2 minutes early. The EPG method will only capture the start of a show about 20% of the time. Of course using the timer method means your program description is wrong. You can change the description, but it is just another pain.

If during a recording session you lose the antenna signal, it will create bit error. That will cause the program to abort in playback and then begin showing (playing) the next recorded show in the box. They only way to get around that (and watch the entire show), is to use the GoTo button and skip over the lost portion of the program - just another hassle with this box.

It takes about 20 seconds to boot up from standby to full on. After that it takes an additional 10 seconds to tune to the correct channel and then start a recording. I use the power on "time" and power off "time" in set up to get around that 20 second delay. I have it power on at 5:59 PM and power off at 10:01PM. This seems to help with both EPG and timer created delays.

If you have a particularly weak antenna signal, it will usually capture a show to record that my TiVo Premiere will not.

I give this product an overall grade of D+, when compared to a TiVo.

Last edited by HoustonPerson; 12-07-2017 at 09:24 AM.
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post #60 of 87 Old 12-09-2017, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
Finally got by Fry's today. The bad news is, their Terks are up to $50 now too. The good news (for me) was that they had an open-box Terk for only $38. That was just cheap enough to entice me to pick it up. It has V3 firmware.
Fry's Saturday only (12/9) has the Terk for $30. Saturday promo code is needed. Free shipping.
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