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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, this was the final straw! I bought another ReplayTV unit today (my other one is up in the bedroom just connected to cable). I went to connect it to the DirectTV feed in the Home Theater downstairs. I use the Panasonic HDS20 DirectTV HDTV receiver.


The Panasonic HDS20 will NOT OUTPUT normal NTSC video (480i) unless the front panel switch (which cannot be controlled remotely) is in 480i mode, which, of course, then disables the HDTV output of 1080i!!


I can't believe they did this! What were they thinking? Don't they ever think of how people will be using their equipment? There is now no way for me to feed an HDTV signal to the component input of my projector, while at the same time sending a normal video signal to my ReplayTV for delayed taping of non-HD material.


I sure hope the Sony or Toshiba receiver is better than this, because this piece of junk is going back to the store tomorrow. What a waste of money!


(Note: this is not the only problem with the Panasonic. It also will not tune normal cable channels at the same time as using the DirectTV antenna feed. It only tunes the primary networks from the local cable, and does not allow you to tune any of the other basic cable channels you might get. Another *really* annoying software limitation)


Guess I should have read these forums more carefully before buying this. Beware of this unit!
 

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LG 55" C9 OLED, Yamaha RX-A660, Monoprice 5.1.2 Speakers, WMC HTPC, TiVo Bolt, X1
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Unfortunately, no satellite STB at this time will output both SD & HD at the same time.


The soon (hopefully) to be available Zenith STB is supposed to have this capability.


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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the info Ken...you saved me more frustrating searching and product comparisons. It's sad that the manufacturers of the STBs seem to think that all we want is Satellite connections and don't understand that some of us (many of us??) still need to use cable to receive our local channels.


(Oh yes, the HDS20 is also missing the RS232 connector that is present on many other DirectTV receivers, so you have to use the Infrared Blaster to change channels from DirectTV, rather than the direct serial cable which is more reliable).
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hmm, are you refering to the Zenith DTV1080 Ken? I just took a look at the specs on their web site, and it says:


"Composite Output (with OSD): 480i (Only Available When 480i Mode Selected)"


So, once again, it sounds like the SD output is only enabled when in 480i mode. Perhaps they will at least allow the mode switch to be remotely controlled? The spec doesn't mention any front or back panel switch for this, so maybe we'll get lucky.


It will still be annoying to have to remember to switch modes to activate the SD output, however. I can just see myself forgetting and getting a blank recording in ReplayTV. Sigh.
 

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LG 55" C9 OLED, Yamaha RX-A660, Monoprice 5.1.2 Speakers, WMC HTPC, TiVo Bolt, X1
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I spoke with Zenith at CEDIA a few weeks ago, they say their box will output HD & SD at the same time. We'll know soon.


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Not that it's any consolation to you, but the Samsung SIR-T150 (not a DirecTV STB; only OTA) has continuous 480i output through the S-video and composite connectors, regardless of whether the three-wire component or RGB component output is set to 480p, 720p, or 1080i. (Yes, they let you choose the output format.)


KC
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I think this is why I'm so frustrated with current manufacturers. We've had several generations of pure satellite receivers and they've got nice fast program guides, dolby digital, and other useful features. Then we have at least 2 generations of OTA HDTV boxes, and they are set up to output both SD and HD at the same time.


But for some reason, when manufacturers put these two things together into one box, they just can't seem to get it right. After reading comparisons of the various STB, they all have multiple problems...and most of these problems have already been solved by past generation products! At the same time, they are charging a premium for these STBs. You'd think for all of the money we are paying that they'd "get it right" and stop dropping features from these boxes.


Ken, I hope you are right about the Zenith. I've learned never to trust a spec sheet from a manufacturer before a product is actually released.


I just hope that one of these days, someone will get this right and release a decent STB (and that the reviewers go all out praising it so that everyone will know about it). These other manufacturers that are producing such sub-quality and sub-feature boxes shouldn't be allowed to make more money.
 
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