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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tinkerin /forum/post/14763308


Sony UTV bought July 2001 replaced hard drive with 120GB shortly thereafter. That drive was replaced earlier this year after the whining noise became too loud. Tuners were replaced this year (thanks to CCS).

Unit is running strong. I even log on to WebTV just to see if it works.

This is now the oldest consumer electronic device that I am using on a regular basis. I have a Sony Beta VCR still hooked up to my entertainment center but haven't put a tape into it in a long time.

I havent seen any similar device demonstrated that works as well as UTV. But I am probably not a neutral observer.

That the UTVers I'm thinking about. Basically my UTVs have been trouble free for 6.5 years now and besides the "help" I've gotten from the forum about upgrades and PM/Repair options... The UTVs haven't need much attention. Keep it up.
 

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I've still got 2 UTV's in service. One of mine just had a tuner go down. Not sure if I will search for another one to swap it out with or not. I don't use that receiver much anyway.


I'm got the buy a 60+ inch tv bug biting me. Along with a dose of call DTV and get a HD-DVR set up heading this way. I've been pleased with my old 36" Toshiba CRT tv so far. I've seen lots of HD set ups and they don't look night and day better then my current set up. It's going to the larger screen that will warrant the HD upgrade though.


Good to hear you've had no problems lgodave. Over the years, I've had 3 tuners fail, 1 drive fail and one board failure due to a lightning hit. All easily replaced through eBay and this forum.
 

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Since 4/15/02...

Two UTV "failures" (Tuner Death). One of those (My last retail UTV purchase in March 03) was replaced with a HDVR2/Tivo in Summer/Fall 2003. My primary Sony UTV (A CC "reconditioned" display/demo model) has had it's tuners replaced by CCS. Some flakiness over the years has required me to install an internal Blower Fan which has kept it happy for the most part.


Had a 160GB Seagate Hard Drive failure when upgrading my Tivo (which lucky me Seagate had switched to a 5 year warranty... Good till 2010. Seagate's 160GB replacement went into the Sony. I picked up a 250GB WD for the Tivo.). Can't say I've had any hard drive failures in any of my UTVs. My 80/120 upgrades have all been humming along nicely and the tuners on those units have been fine. Might be because they are elevated on caps and in the basement where the temp is usually around 55F. No added fans for those.


I haven't had much "luck" with Ebay and for sales from this site... until recently at least. Many of those had dead tuners (which I wasn't made aware of) and/or had drive/power up issues... So those usually weren't in service and are just parts machines.
 

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Wow, reading this thread is like a class reunion. I also still have UTVs in service...at last count 4 of 'em, having just recently retired one. I also have 2 DirecTivos in use, and am now the owner of 3 DTV Dvrs (a 20, 21, and a 22, if I remember the models correctly).


I got my first UTV from my wife as an anniversary present in April of 2001. I had joined these forums just a few months earlier. My wife still says that UTV is one of the top 5 pieces of technology in the house (and believe me, she's been exposed to a crapload of gadgets over the years). I'd pretty much agree with her on that.


I've done the hard drive upgrades on all but 1 (the recently retired unit), and I'm pretty sure at least 3 of the remaining 4 got loving care at CCS at one point or another.


I'm gradually doing the HD switchover...very interested in SWM since as you might imagine, with 9 DVRs, the multi-switch and wiring poses a challenge.


As yes, I'm still in love with the UTV interface. Nothing, and I really mean nothing, IMHO has ever come close to it.


Charles
 

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My UTV is still going strong along side my new HR21. I still use it to record the occasional SD program and as a backup for "must see" shows. It's saved me from missing at least a few shows that the HR21 failed to record early on. It's been a lot better recently, though.


I've been very happy with the latest HR21 software other than the search function. I loved being able to set up title searches to record on the UTV, even if the shows weren't yet in the guide. It made getting ready for the new Fall lineup so much easier. That's another reason I still keep the UTV going. I just have it set to keep no more than a couple of episodes of each show, so they'll roll off automatically if I don't need to watch them (as in they're in HD on the HR20). Of course, it's always nice to have an extra couple of tuners for busy nights.


If they were to ever make an HD version of the UTV, I'd get one in a second - especially if it had broadband and remote scheduling support.


Right now, it's a team effort between the two DVRs.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by NetworkTV /forum/post/14804484


My UTV is still going strong along side my new HR21. I still use it to record the occasional SD program and as a backup for "must see" shows. It's saved me from missing at least a few shows that the HR21 failed to record early on. It's been a lot better recently, though.


(Clip)


Of course, it's always nice to have an extra couple of tuners for busy nights.


If they were to ever make an HD version of the UTV, I'd get one in a second - especially if it had broadband and remote scheduling support.


Right now, it's a team effort between the two DVRs.

I've found that to be true about my DTivo... It's currently a "backup" of my UTVs and it does tend to "miss" programs the UTV will catch... OR it will record a bunch of repeats (deleting "new" content) that the UTV is "smart" enough to not re-record. The Colbert Report is a good example... CC repeats the previous day's show like 3 times and my DTivo tends leave me with 4 records of the same show...


Got to love having more tuners then you need at any one time... I'm thinking it might be good to move a UTV upstairs to "backup" my Primary UTV. It's becoming too common, where I want to record a few shows and I still want to channel surf...
 

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I still have 2 utv's in service. However, I am gradually shifting away from using the utv's to watch the shows - mostly I use the utv for watching sports only, where the 30 second skip still rules, and use my pc to watch the others after doing a capture and ad removal.

For those that might be interested, here's my video processing procedure:


I have developed a somewhat pain free method to capture these onto one of my pc's where I then have a number of scripts that I use to remove commercials. Then I play them back on my laptop connected via s-video to my TV using the vlc media player. The files remain on my desktop PC which serves the files to my laptop using a standard windows file share. These are sent over my linksys wireless network which surprisingly is fast enough. VLC has a nice cropping function so I can get rid of the noise that DTV puts in the first 5 lines of a video (some sort of control info that normally is not seen on a regular TV, but is visible in a captured video file).



What I am thinking about is how to get some sort of DTV dvr that lets me transfer files over my network, since the biggest headache is to capture a show. This, with a utv, takes a full playback time. So, to transfer 1 hour takes an hour to capture, then about 15 minutes to send over my network to my video processing system. Ad removal takes another 10 mintues or so.


My scripts use the video-redo shareware program to transfer the file across my network onto my big desktop machine and cleans up the video a bit during the transfer. Then I run video redo's ad detective, and also run comskip, a free commercial removal program.


I wrote a script that lets me place the output windows (with scenes to delete) from both programs sort of on top of one another so I can see in a flash if they both agree with where the ads are. If they do, I accept the results, which usually work quite well. If they don't agree, it's easy to see and I then do a manual edit pass to fix up any mistakes they make. Usually one or the other of the programs remove the ads quite well.


BTW, the most accurate way to tell where commericals end is that there is almost always now a tv rating block in the first few seconds after a commercial ends. For the beginnings, there's a fade to black which is easy to see by eyeballing it. Both programs are adept at finding the black frames that are there between show and commercials.


Anyway, once you get addicted to watching shows, like heros' or any movies on FX, tbs, AMC, etc. with all the commercials edited out, it makes even the 30 second skip button seem to be a lot of trouble.


But for ease of setting up recordings, I still like the UTV the best. But I can see a day in the future where I will probably go the beyond tv route or some other similar system.
 

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I haven't looked here since I moved on from my UTV. Surprised to see a few of you's still here. I moved to a Tivo HR10-250 (crappy box for the most part), to a HR20-100 (better, but the video card crapped out), and now I have a HR22-100 (pretty much the same, but operating correctly, so far.) If the UTV was HD, I never would have left. Still the best OS of all the boxes I've had.
 

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Still have 3 running here... and as other have mentioned.. still the best interface there was..


but with the tv's getting switched over to flat lcd's... it won't be long till they are all shut down..


Any decent upgrade offers?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jplescia /forum/post/15084905


Still have 3 running here...

but with the tv's getting switched over to flat lcd's... it won't be long till they are all shut down..

The "trick" I've found is not to use the HD feed (OTA) as much on my HDTV... and avoid comparing it to my SD feed from the UTV.
It really is no comparison...


Sort of tricks your mind into thinking it's "great" when it really isn't... Just like how I use the "OK" Coaxial feeds on most of my TVs where A/V or S-Video are better. I suspect there will be plenty of folks next year using "SD" Converter Boxs that will be using my "logic". It's better then Analog but not as good as true HD, but if you don't care to compare to much... all is good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #113 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by jplescia /forum/post/15084905


Still have 3 running here... and as other have mentioned.. still the best interface there was..


but with the tv's getting switched over to flat lcd's... it won't be long till they are all shut down..

I never thought I would this, but the HR's have come a long way in the last 2 years and I find them to be a bit faster at doing things then the UTV.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jplescia /forum/post/15084905


Any decent upgrade offers?

You should give them a call and see what they can for you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lgodave /forum/post/15086279


The "trick" I've found is not to use the HD feed (OTA) as much on my HDTV... and avoid comparing it to my SD feed from the UTV.
It really is no comparison...


Sort of tricks your mind into thinking it's "great" when it really isn't... Just like how I use the "OK" Coaxial feeds on most of my TVs where A/V or S-Video are better. I suspect there will be plenty of folks next year using "SD" Converter Boxs that will be using my "logic". It's better then Analog but not as good as true HD, but if you don't care to compare to much... all is good.

Not quite sure what you mean here, but ok. An HD picture is way better then any SD picture I've ever seen.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by theratpatrol /forum/post/15087114


Not quite sure what you mean here, but ok. An HD picture is way better then any SD picture I've ever seen.

To put it simple... Think of SD UTV feed as Analog OTA. HD as well HD OTA... You know HD is better picture then SD... but you try not to compare them much... SD is "good" and you're happy not to spend the extra $10 plus hardware/setup a month to provide HD to your HD set. (Odd I know considering the $10 UTV fee, Tivo/DTVDVR fee,Mirror fees, etc. I'm already paying...)


If when the rest of the TVs get upgraded (probably not for a long while) I might understand the desire to upgrade...


I guess until you get an HDTV and compare it to SD you'll be better able to "fool" yourself. So I'm "fooling" myself with my Eyes Wide Open.
 

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I agree that ignorance is bliss. If you don't expose yourself to the HD signals, they won't be your reference. And also, you won't see how many zits, scars, warts and wrinkles that the average 'celebrity' has (not fun to watch while eating).


Another alternative is to buy a HDTV 37" or below, and read the reviews for claims about excellent SD performance through the s-video inputs. Some HDTVs do a much better job with SD than others.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by blimey /forum/post/15089947


I agree that ignorance is bliss. If you don't expose yourself to the HD signals, they won't be your reference. And also, you won't see how many zits, scars, warts and wrinkles that the average 'celebrity' has (not fun to watch while eating).


Another alternative is to buy a HDTV 37" or below, and read the reviews for claims about excellent SD performance through the s-video inputs. Some HDTVs do a much better job with SD than others.

But the problem is that I don't want/need a complete TV, I only want a monitor. When I look at the prices, hdtv's are very expensive (at frys say) while computer monitors, of a decent size, say 25"" are as little as $400. That would be way good enough for me, except, these don't have s-video inputs.


I wonder, is there a cheap converter to take s-video and change it to pc analog or digital so it would play on one of these?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocket /forum/post/15092348


But the problem is that I don't want/need a complete TV, I only want a monitor. When I look at the prices, hdtv's are very expensive (at frys say) while computer monitors, of a decent size, say 25"" are as little as $400. That would be way good enough for me, except, these don't have s-video inputs.


I wonder, is there a cheap converter to take s-video and change it to pc analog or digital so it would play on one of these?

The converter would cost more than the TV.


You can get a 25" LCD HDTV for under $400. Saw at least 3 at that pricepoint at Walmart just a few days ago - and that was regular price. You can get in the 30" range for around $500 - and some of those come with RGB inputs, so you could use them for both TV and the computer.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by paulwozniak /forum/post/15049185


I haven't looked here since I moved on from my UTV. Surprised to see a few of you's still here. I moved to a Tivo HR10-250 (crappy box for the most part), to a HR20-100 (better, but the video card crapped out), and now I have a HR22-100 (pretty much the same, but operating correctly, so far.) If the UTV was HD, I never would have left. Still the best OS of all the boxes I've had.

I'm debating a move from UTV to HD still. I have a HR10-250 available to use OTA, and maybe on D*, on a new bedroom HDTV after I would get a free HR2x for the family room. Does that old unit access all the D* channels and programing content? I can't find much on this site, and I know nothing about MPEG-2/-4 encoding.


Yes, I know I'll need a new access card, but I'll try whining and groveling, known also as haggling.


Thanks for your time, Bob
 

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Discussion Starter · #119 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by ownersedge /forum/post/15362833


I'm debating a move from UTV to HD still. I have a HR10-250 available to use OTA, and maybe on D*, on a new bedroom HDTV after I would get a free HR2x for the family room. Does that old unit access all the D* channels and programing content? I can't find much on this site, and I know nothing about MPEG-2/-4 encoding.


Yes, I know I'll need a new access card, but I'll try whining and groveling, known also as haggling.


Thanks for your time, Bob

The older boxes will continue to get the MPEG2 SD channels from 101/110/119. It will not pick up any of the new MPEG4 HD channels, you will need a new receiver for that. Your HR10-250 will be able to pick up the few MPEG2 HD channels, but those will be going away soon.


If you want even more information, check out this site.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRatPatrol /forum/post/15364660


The older boxes will continue to get the MPEG2 SD channels from 101/110/119. It will not pick up any of the new MPEG4 HD channels, you will need a new receiver for that. Your HR10-250 will be able to pick up the few MPEG2 HD channels, but those will be going away soon.


If you want even more information, check out this site.

Thanks for the link... Just used my Protection Plan this afternoon to replace one of my UTVs that has decided it wanted to delete recordings/lockup/reset/have sluggish remote response plus a dead tuner...


DirecTV anticipates sending me an R15 or R16 replacement hoping the link will get me up to speed just like this site has for nearly 9 years now.


After the "new" receiver gets installed I'll still be running 5 other UTVs. Still haven't found a DirectDVR yet that offers PIP, 30 second skip (default), and 300X FF/Rewind.
 
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