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Quote:
Originally Posted by winterescape  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3240#post_24638250


Not having the slightest idea how the unit is architected, could the burden the tuner puts on the system as it acquires and than switches to a different signal have any impact on the system in other areas? It seems at least plausible that if the tuner takes most or all of the CPU resources to switch ATSC streams, or discriminate between two, that other tasks running could suffer, like transfer over USB, recording, or playback.


Only the firmware engineer at CM with the proper tools to analyze processor utilization could answer that question.

Some very good observations. I have to agree with you that there could possibly be some buffer and/or CPU resource issues with the DVR+ at/when certain error events occur.


I did a test taking one of the DVR+ video recordings (when playing this recording using the DVR+ player, I encountered some intermittent "glitches" and/or freezing) and copied this file to my NAS network and created a VLC Media version using the ffmpeg converter. The converted file played fine with no glitches and/or freeze ups on my Windows7 machine. It also worked flawlessly using the Windows 7 Media player too. The HD quality was quite good especially when I played it back on my 60" VIZIO flat screen TV. Therefore, I can conclude that the DVR+ video recordings are fine.


The DVR+ recorded file when played using the DVR+ recorder did have an intermittent freeze up but I could not duplicate that event consistently. It also encountered the black screen (1 second blink) event from time to time but really not anything that made my viewing unacceptable and again I could not duplicate that either.




I am overall very happy with my DVR+ unit especially that I can set my recording schedules in advance and use up to two tuners too. I do most of my "live" watching directly from my 60" VIZIO flat screen TV using the tuner in that devise. The DVR+ and my VIZIO are connected to the same omnidirectional antenna that uses an in-line amplifier supplied by the antenna maker. The quality of the recordings in HD are extremely good (better than if done through cable). It's just the occasional DVR+ play back that has certain issues at times. It's not a deal breaker for me since 98% of the time everything is working fine.


EKS
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ignatz13  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3300#post_24651961


Here's what my guide looks like now...


 

You have logos for the Tulsa Stations, try putting in a zipcode for Ft Smith or Fayetteville and see what happens. I started to get a DVR+ to play with, but have no need for one.


I don't have a DVR+ but I have 3 DTVPaldvrs so I've tried to be proactive with getting good psip info sent out. I keep 1 at my home in Broken Arrow, 1 at lake house in Wagoner and 1 in Condo in Las Vegas. I have talked to the engineers in Tulsa at KJRH, KOTV and KTUL, that is why those channels have 3 to 4 days of psip info. OETA I can't them to put more info out,even though I've asked the head engineer a half dozen times. The 2 Cox channels KOKI and KMYT wont reply, which is what I expected. I doubt the engineers at Cox do more than is required for the OTA signal. Las Vegas is on my list next time I'm out there long enough to work on it. The psip out there is terrible.
 

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Setting up Recordings on the Channel Master DVR+:

 

I've had my DVR+ for less than a week now. My overall impression is good, but I’m surprised how awkward the recording process can be. I've given up on using early recording times to compensate for late starts on recorded programs, since there are not choices less than a minute, and using this feature can interfere with recordings in adjoining time slots.

 

At first I couldn't understand why there were no choices to start less than a minute early, but I now understand that’s because the DVR+ clock will only sync over the internet to the nearest minute. I've now set both early and late recording defaults to zero. Using a clock app on my iPad as a reference, I found that my DVR+ was consistently 20 seconds late when starting a recording. My work around is to manually set the time one minute ahead with the result that my recordings all now start about 40 seconds early.

 

I've also found that recording all episodes by name doesn't work on some channels, so I've gone to using Manual Recordings for those channels, but Channel Master doesn't make it a simple process. You have to first use the guide to choose a time and channel, but then when you choose Manual Recording the DVR+ doesn't pick up the name of the program. Instead it displays “Manual Recording” which you then have to delete one character at time before entering the name of the program.

 

Once you've created a Manual Recording, you can edit the settings, but I found that I couldn't edit either Start or End Times from the DVR Scheduled Recordings menu, which seemed to be the logical place. I was ready to delete one manual recording entry and re-do it all, just to change the End Time, but fortunately I found out that the Start and End Times can be edited from Recording History Menu (but not the program name or repeat options). Go figure.
 

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@ osu1991

 

I've tried zip codes from Okmulgee back to Fort Smith and north as far as Tahlequah and, after numerous factory resets, I cannot see any improvement in the guide data.  I searched for several programs that I previously recorded with Tivo, but Rovi cannot find them.  I created a manually recording for early this morning, but it did not record and the DVR+ was off when we got up.  It took several attempts to get it to come on.  I assumed we had a power outage due to the storms last night, but that doesn't seem to be the case as all other electronics were on.

 

I have finally decided to contact Channel Master and hope they can resolve some of these problems.  I've had this for a week today and seriously thinking about hooking my Tivo back up.
 

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the ROVI relation with e* as mfg and CM as a reseller was under scrutiny last years when ROVI just ceased its EPG distribution thru TVGOS



see that DTVpakDVR thread ...
 

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I think there are already more than enough existing issues with the DVR+ to discuss at this point. If at some point the status of the free Rovi Guide changes, then lets deal with it then.

 

I'm more concerned that I have to use manual recordings because the DVR+ Record by Name doesn't work on some channels, and when I setup a Manual Recording, the Default Early and Late recording times aren't used, with the only option being to adjust start time in 5 minute increments. I tried setting the time clock manually, but there's way too much drift in it for that to be practical.

 

I contacted Channel Master Support and responded to the email I received from them on Friday with a full account of the issues I've been having including screen shots. I'm still waiting for a further reply from them.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandman905  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3300_100#post_24658130


I contacted Channel Master Support and responded to the email I received from them on Friday with a full account of the issues I've been having including screen shots. I'm still waiting for a further reply from them.

Would you mind repeating your full account of the issues here?


.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ignatz13  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3300#post_24658270


It just gets better and better...no guide data at all...scan says 0 channels even though there are.

I have suffered from that issue before. It really sucks off you want too delete any channels.


It is an easy fix,but slightly annoying. Unplug it for 30-45 seconds, then duo a factory reset.


Do a full channel scan, them go back to that screen, it will be 20/20 channels.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by wiscojim  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3300#post_24658275



Would you mind repeating your full account of the issues here?


.
 

I've learned some more about recording with the DVR+ over the weekend, but here’s what I’m still waiting to hear back from Channel Master about:

1.      Why does Record by Name work on some channels, but not others when the next episode information is showing in the guide? When I first called Channel Master about this I was told that I was the first person to ever have this problem, but I know of another person who has describe this same problem in a forum post on another website. What I’ve learned it that it seems to work with channels that are getting two weeks of information from Rovi, but not with channels that are getting only 12 hours of information at a time from PSIP.

2.      When I use a Manual Recording to get around the not recording by name problem, why are the Default Early and Late Recording times not applied to those recordings? Also why when I locate the episode I want to manually record, does the DVR+ not apply the name of that episode to the Manual Recording name? Manual Recordings always default to the name “Manual Recording” which you then have to delete one character at a time and replace manually with the name of the episode.

3.      The only practical way I've found to cause a Manual Recording to start early is to adjust the recording Start Time, but why is “5 Minutes” the minimum change allowed? Why is “1 Minute” not an option. I now know that “10 Seconds” or “30 Seconds” are not options because the DVR+ internal clock can’t deal with time increments less than one minute.
 

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I have to say thank you to MOST of the people on this forum.  When I've had problems/questions and posed them, I received responses with suggested fixes to my problems in a very timely and friendly manner.  I have also continued to follow the forum to keep apprised of the issues and fixes, in case I experience them with my DVR+.  I fully agree with the others on the forum that have asked slprp1 to please sit on your hands - holy cow, I just read about 200+ posts to catch myself up, and your incessant posting of mostly defensive responses to people's attempts to help solve problems and provide updates make this forum 1) nearly intolerable to follow and 2) really difficult to glean actual useful information from it. It's really not necessary to respond to every single other post when you're not adding anything of value and just trying to perpetuate your personal opinion about the failings of the DVR+ and CM.  I think most of us are generally just trying to fix the problems with our units (yes, we all know there are problems, but we've decided to keep them and try to get them to work for our needs) or figuring out whether the benefits outweigh the problems in deciding whether to purchase/keep a DVR+.

 

That being said, I wonder if someone on the forum (who has more time and expertise than I) might be willing to put in the time to outline all the known issues in one post, along with all the fixes (both found to work and suggested)?  I think that would really help a newbie or anyone who is researching the unit.  For example, since I received my replacement unit (I somehow "broke" my original DVR+ by unplugging the HDD w/o shutting the whole thing down and unplugging from power), the two major problems that I'm still experiencing with my DVR+ are the following:

 

1) My clock is constantly slowing down - I need to switch from Auto to Manual and back again every 1-2 days to get it back up to the right time, plus I set my recordings to start a few min early and end a few min late to make up for the clock issues.  I understand from the posts on this forum that this problem is widespread and will be fixed with the impending FW update. I've chosen to deal with this issue instead of trying to revert my FW back to 101, and I eagerly (and patiently) await the 106 update. 

 

2) I've experienced picture and audio pixellation on random channels I am watching/recording at random times.  It seems like possibly a signal issue, but at the same time I check on another TV hooked up to the same antenna w/o a DVR, and the same channel is totally watchable w/o any issues.  So I'm sort of chalking this problem up to the "not-as-good tuners" issue mentioned on this forum (though admittedly, I'm not 100% sure what a tuner is!).  I haven't yet to try to reboot my system to try to fix this, since I'm also not 100% sure if my settings will all be lost with a reboot, and at this point the prospect of having to redo all my settings is outweighing my desire to try the reboot.  It would be great if the experts on this forum could weigh in here on this issue if possible.

 

Thanks again to all the helpful DVR+ owners out there.  Hopefully this forum can be steered back to the "here is my issue" "here is a suggested fix" kind of discussion I've found so very helpful on AVS.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sooziecue  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3330#post_24659523


...  I haven't yet to try to reboot my system to try to fix this, since I'm also not 100% sure if my settings will all be lost with a reboot, and at this point the prospect of having to redo all my settings is outweighing my desire to try the reboot.  It would be great if the experts on this forum could weigh in here on this issue if possible...
100% your settings will be not affected (if the DVR will come back - j/k) by casual [cold] reboot
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sooziecue  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3330#post_24659523

 

...the two major problems that I'm still experiencing with my DVR+ are the following:

 

1) My clock is constantly slowing down - I need to switch from Auto to Manual and back again every 1-2 days to get it back up to the right time, plus I set my recordings to start a few min early and end a few min late to make up for the clock issues.  I understand from the posts on this forum that this problem is widespread and will be fixed with the impending FW update. I've chosen to deal with this issue instead of trying to revert my FW back to 101, and I eagerly (and patiently) await the 106 update. 

 

2) I've experienced picture and audio pixellation on random channels I am watching/recording at random times.  It seems like possibly a signal issue, but at the same time I check on another TV hooked up to the same antenna w/o a DVR, and the same channel is totally watchable w/o any issues.  So I'm sort of chalking this problem up to the "not-as-good tuners" issue mentioned on this forum (though admittedly, I'm not 100% sure what a tuner is!).  I haven't yet to try to reboot my system to try to fix this, since I'm also not 100% sure if my settings will all be lost with a reboot, and at this point the prospect of having to redo all my settings is outweighing my desire to try the reboot.  It would be great if the experts on this forum could weigh in here on this issue if possible.

 

Thanks again to all the helpful DVR+ owners out there.  Hopefully this forum can be steered back to the "here is my issue" "here is a suggested fix" kind of discussion I've found so very helpful on AVS.
 

Unlike older DVRs that had reasonably stable and accurate internal clocks, the DVR+ seems to rely entirely on a network time source from the internet. My brief attempt to change from Automatic to Manual time setting ended when I realized my DVR+ clock had drifted by about 10 seconds in less than a day.

 

As for things being fixed by firmware updates, I'm not aware that Channel Master has provided any information on this. When I spoke to Channel Master tech support I few days ago, I asked what had been fixed with the 103R update (which I believe is the latest one). I didn't get much of an answer, but I my impression was that whatever had been fixed was minor.

 

My experience with OTA TV reception is that audio dropouts are one of the first effects noticed when the received signal is weak, followed by pixelation. And, if your signal gets weak you’re going to have recording problems. I suspect part of the problem is the tuner in the DVR+. I've had regular audio dropouts with one of my more distant channels, but when I check the Signal Strength and Quality, they are both at 100%. It would have been nice if Channel Master had included a button on the remote to quickly bring up this screen. More comprehensive information including the number of Errors received and the Signal to Noise Ratio would also have been helpful.

 

As far as I know the only time you will lose all your settings is if you do a Factory Reset from the Settings menu. You can also do a “soft reboot” by holding down the front panel power button for about 5 seconds, which should then bring up a bright red or blue LED indicator. If you want to reset it by unplugging the power, first make sure the front panel LED is a dim blue color.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sooziecue  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3330#post_24659523


1) My clock is constantly slowing down - I need to switch from Auto to Manual and back again every 1-2 days to get it back up to the right time, plus I set my recordings to start a few min early and end a few min late to make up for the clock issues.  I understand from the posts on this forum that this problem is widespread and will be fixed with the impending FW update. I've chosen to deal with this issue instead of trying to revert my FW back to 101, and I eagerly (and patiently) await the 106 update. 

 
sooziecue,

 

In post #3161, on page 106, I posted some info on fixing the time.  Ever since then, the time has been stable for me.
 

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Thanks again for all the helpful suggestions!

 

Arenal04 - I will try a rescan of the channels as you mentioned in post #3161 and see if that helps with my clock.  Last night I checked the clock (after not checking for about 5 days) and this time it was around 10 minutes fast!  This clock issue is really the only problem that is actually affecting my use of the unit - it's otherwise been a fabulous fill for the hole that cutting our cable (and losing the associated DVR) created in our TV-watching lives. Crossing my fingers for the *rumored* clock fix in the next FW update.

 

Sandman905 & PSmith - Thanks for the confirmation about rebooting and not losing my settings - I'm sure it will be helpful to others who are considering trying it.  If my pixellation gets more annoying/frequent, I'll definitely try the reboot.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sooziecue  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3330#post_24662113

 

Thanks again for all the helpful suggestions!

 

Arenal04 - I will try a rescan of the channels as you mentioned in post #3161 and see if that helps with my clock.  Last night I checked the clock (after not checking for about 5 days) and this time it was around 10 minutes fast!  This clock issue is really the only problem that is actually affecting my use of the unit - it's otherwise been a fabulous fill for the hole that cutting our cable (and losing the associated DVR) created in our TV-watching lives. Crossing my fingers for the *rumored* clock fix in the next FW update.

 

Sandman905 & PSmith - Thanks for the confirmation about rebooting and not losing my settings - I'm sure it will be helpful to others who are considering trying it.  If my pixellation gets more annoying/frequent, I'll definitely try the reboot.
 

I can’t find anything from Channel Master on the source the DVR+ uses to synchronize its time clock in Auto mode, but based on their description of how the CM-7400 works, it looks like it will use a network NTP time reference if it an internet connection is available. An internet connection should provide the best time reference (a WiFi connection may not be as reliable as a wired one though). If there is no internet connection the DVR+ would then use the time reference provided by the PSIP data in one of your received TV channels. Hopefully it will pick a channel with a strong signal and not just the first one it finds.

 

I doesn’t look like the Manual time setting is practical because it drifts so much. I’ve would definitely try a re-boot (hold the front panel power button down) if you’re not getting a proper Auto time sync. Don’t underestimate the importance of having consistently strong TV signals for time syncing if you’re not using an internet connection. Also, the  DVR+ won’t record a program if the channel doesn’t have a good signal.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandman905  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3330#post_24662531

 

 

I can’t find anything from Channel Master on the source the DVR+ uses to synchronize its time clock in Auto mode, but based on their description of how the CM-7400 works, it looks like it will use a network NTP time reference if it an internet connection is available. An internet connection should provide the best time reference (a WiFi connection may not be as reliable as a wired one though). If there is no internet connection the DVR+ would then use the time reference provided by the PSIP data in one of your received TV channels. Hopefully it will pick a channel with a strong signal and not just the first one it finds.

 

I doesn’t look like the Manual time setting is practical because it drifts so much. I’ve would definitely try a re-boot (hold the front panel power button down) if you’re not getting a proper Auto time sync. Don’t underestimate the importance of having consistently strong TV signals for time syncing if you’re not using an internet connection. Also, the  DVR+ won’t record a program if the channel doesn’t have a good signal.
When I contacted CM support about this, their reply was:

"The time comes from the broadcaster and so what is happening is the time that is being broadcasted is off when it comes to the software on the DVR+. To help this you can try and change the zip code on your DVR+ settings and then rescan the channel. I would suggest using the zip code nearest the broadcast towers.

Our engineer team is working on a fix so that the time comes from the internet properly."

 

Agreed, the time drift is horrid. 
  Which is what caused me to contact CM support.  While I applaud CM's effort to fix the problem, I'm not a fan of having to leave my wireless router on all the time, in order for the DVR+ clock to be correct.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandman905  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3330#post_24662531


I can’t find anything from Channel Master on the source the DVR+ uses to synchronize its time clock in Auto mode, but based on their description of how the CM-7400 works, it looks like it will use a network NTP time reference if it an internet connection is available. ...
[I'd like to remind how important to read/search the thread - a lot of factual info posted already]


Some of our member/owner found: the K77 using NTP when it connected to Internet (you can find his post and know better, what site it connecting, how often, etc.


I would not bring internals of CM-7400; it would be totally incorrect - the model design/mfg by Entone, when TR-50 and the K77 - by e*. Absolutely different design, components, FW and methods of creating OTA DVR.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by P Smith  /t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/3330#post_24662757



[I'd like to remind how important to read/search the thread - a lot of factual info posted already]


Some of our member/owner found: the K77 using NTP when it connected to Internet (you can find his post and know better, what site it connecting, how often, etc.


I would not bring internals of CM-7400; it would be totally incorrect - the model design/mfg by Entone, when TR-50 and the K77 - by e*. Absolutely different design, components, FW and methods of creating OTA DVR.
 

I did come across that post which mentioned NTP time some time ago, but it would still be useful to hear from CM as to exactly how the time clock in the DVR+ is maintained under various conditions and what takes priority. I would have thought with an active wired internet connection, I could adjust for late recordings by setting the clock one minute ahead and the DVR+ would still use NTP time from the internet as a reference, since it doesn't appear to have its own accurate internal reference (as experienced by those who have tired to set the time manually).

I was never able to get my seven year old Sony RDR-HX750 DVR to sync its clock to a Cable TV signal, but I can set the clock to within a few seconds and it will keep accurate time for up to six months, at which point I have to set it again for Daylight Savings.
 
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