My brother had a similar problem with his 5xxx unit. I originally assumed it was the hard drive, but when it finally got into an endless reboot cycle, I pulled the hard drive and tested it. No problems detected. I have to wonder if it's a software problem.
Is it possible that some of these are heat related issues? For those of you experiencing this problem, are you giving your Replay proper ventilation? I have seen some people stick it in a closed cabinet. This is never a good idea. You should also avoid stacking it on top of other components that may run warm such as a digital cable box. Just a thought.
I know mine gets proper ventalation. The real question is, those of you who are having this problem... are you using DVArchive?
I know that when I use DVArchive I run into this problem. It stutters when I play a movie and then just craps out after an hour and locks up my replay. I have to restart it and then it seems to be fine again. The stuttering doesn't stop from there though. I think I will try unplugging it for a bit to really give it a reset.
My 4504 has just recently started this stuttering as well. Last week it happened over night, so I am not sure if it was recording a show or not. Yesterday, it did it twice, while playing back a show, and another time while watching "live" tv. A hard reboot "solved" the problem. I had over 3 hours of unallocated space on the machine, so I don;t think it was low on disk space.
My 5040 (upgraded to 120GB) was having this problem. Any time a new show started (recording or live) the show would start, but a few seconds in the show the audio (and As far as I could tell the video) would start stuttering. It would get worse and worse until the unit just froze. At that point I could change channels or start another program and it would all start again. The upgraded drive went bad according to the Maxtor PowerMax utility. I put the original drive back in and it works fine now. I really do think this is a hard drive related problem, but I would bet Lyndon would know better.
The stuttering problem is the ONLY problem which keeps me from telling other people it's reliable. I can't depend on the unit to record my shows. I either have to rush home to make sure it's not stuttering, in which case I have to reset it, or I have to call my wife and have her check the unit. It's not a DVArchive issue, I don't use that. It's not a modem issue, it's connected to my network. It's not a heating issue, my house is always cold and the cabinet is open in front and back and it's not sitting on any units. When it works it works great. The day it dies is the day I take out the hard drive and use it for more pron!
i'm having the exact same issue on my showstopper. i've had it for about two years now but it just started having this problem about two weeks ago. i can watch live tv for about an hour and then the stuttering/freezing begins. it only seems to occur when watching live tv. i figured it was the beginning of HD failure or a problem with the live buffer. i was looking at the instructions out there for expanding your HD space and noticed that you can actually replace the original drive with a bigger one. i found a cheap 80gb drive and will try to replace it soon to see if it makes any difference.
My 5160 had that problem early on, but only when it would begin to record another show. It would stutter for about 15 seconds. Now (4 months later) it stutters at seemingly random intervals for up to 2 minutes. Also, often when I begin to play a recorded show from the replay guide, the unit just locks up. I have to do a reboot to unlock it (and lose anything currently recording in the process.)
Maybe the hd is too full (75%). However, it did this before the unit got so full, so I'm not sure it applies. And my computer runs just fine until its hd reaches 90-95%.
Heating may be an issue, but normally I don't have the unit on for long before I see this. My cabinet reaches about 90 degrees F (guesstimate). I may install some sort of fan in the back of my ent center. If this works, I'll let you guys know.
Maybe the unit is just awfully fragile?
I love this machine, but I agree with psypher, I can't recommend it to anyone without telling them about its reliability problems. I hope there will be some sort of software/os fix for the 5XXX machines. At the very least, I hope future models of the RTV put more of a focus on stability.
Back when I was having similar problems, opening the front of the cabinet and letting a room fan blow into the cabinet help immensely. I also had the cover opened and positioned such that the air would blow across the hard drives. I believe the fan in the unit does not provide nearly enough cooling for the inside of the unit. Therefore, keeping the unit outside of a closed cabinet is not enough .. Perhaps replacing the fan with something that actually moves some air across the disk drive and motherboard would be nice. Another thing, at least on the 4500 series, the air that is blown comes inside the unit, gets heated by the hard drive, then passes over the motherboard before being expelled .. this is not a good. The hottest components should get cooling air LAST. Of course it would be better if separate air passed over each component .. but how much space is there for fans?
I had the same problem (stuttering while watching live TV). Restoring factory defaults fixed the problem for a short time, but then it got worse. I'm fairly sure this has nothing to do with cooling, as my Replay sits on top of my entertainment center with nothing around it.
I had the unit RMA'ed, and the new one does not exhibit this problem. I'm not sure if it was the hard drive or some other type of hardware failure.
i'm not sure that it was a heat issue but i did have my digital cable box directly on top of the replay for years and both were in a closed cabinet. i've never had this stutter problem until recently. actually, i just recently moved them both to a new cabinet that has the entire backside open, so it should have been cooler now than before. but i guess any heat damage could have occurred over time (or the HD just simply crapped out over the 2 years that i've had it). in any case, i bought a new 80gb maxtor drive and copied over the system partition. once i installed the new drive, everything seems to work fine (and with the extra space i'm able to record everything in high quality).
I have briefly experienced the stuttering problem, but it only happens when the unit does a commercial skip. When it skips the commercial, and comes back to the show, it starts to stutter. I just stop it and start playing again. This has only happened a couple of times.
Something that I have noticed is that sometimes the picture "jumps" a bit. Like it skipped over a millisecond of programming. I have seen this during live TV and playing back a recorded show.
Yeah, just started having the same problem last week with my Showstopper. Major stuttering, especially bad when trying to watch a recorded show while recording, which leads me to believe that it's a hard drive pooping out.
I replaced the hard drive two years ago with a 5400 RPM 80 gig Maxtor which has been extremely solid up to this point. I'm almost to the point where I'm going to try to take it out and reimage it and if that doesn't work chalk it up to hardware failure and grab a new drive.
Any other solutions people have run accross that fix this type of problem?
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