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32 posts

Geek


# 136403 26-Nov-2013 09:13
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JC Matthew's has on their site information about a firmware update for their product, which came out after the posting below, which is also on their site.  This firmware update does not fix the problem, and it is over a year since the posting below.   Using their contact us email address just bounces the email back.  The DVR320T is no longer listed as a freeview approved box, but it was when I purchased it.  I don't think either Freeview or JC Matthew should be permitted to leave this box in a state that makes watching playback less than enjoyable due to the freezing and delays with button presses being recognised by the box.  I am wondering what legal standpoint we have regarding this.  I've owned my box for a number of years.  If it had not been a seperate box but rather built into the TV, I would expect the thing to keep working within a reasonable life of the TV.  I consider this to be a minimum of 5 years for a TV and potentially up to 10, which is how long my last TV went for, and was still going, prior to me going digital.  I expect the same for my Freeview box.  Any thoughts on this anyone?

Problem description from JC Matthews site

 

 

 

 

 

** JC Matthew DVR320T Freeview Recorder update - 29/10/2012

We have become aware of some issues as a result of  the changes made to the Broadcast data by Mediaworks on September 28th 2012.

 

The DVR320T is fully Freeview Approved.

 

The changes have caused an increase in the amount of EPG data which the DVR320T is not capable of processing. This extra EPG data is required and cannot be reversed by Mediaworks.

 

This can cause delays when pressing buttons such as EGP, fast forward and sometimes even causing recorded program  to temporarily freeze.We apologise for the inconvenience.

 

We are working with the manufacturer in Taiwan to find a suitable remedy.

 

We ask all users of the DVR320T to please be patient while we work through  and find a solution. At this stage we do not have a firm date when the problem will be rectified, but rest assured we are working hard on this issue. 

 

Once the issue has been resolved, it will require a firmware update to be installed, which we will post on this site for download , along with instructions on how to install.

 

 

 

 


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3295 posts

Uber Geek

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  # 940927 26-Nov-2013 11:24
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I 100% agree and it is the focus of the recent posts in the other thread about this box here.

Not sure what to do though. I tried contacting the Herald, because with the whole DSO and Freeview Approved thing, I think it's important. Haven't heard anything from them.

Apsattv suggested http://freeviewforum.co.nz/ and Freeview's Faceboook page.

It's really rubbish. I'd buy a new box but what would I buy, Freeview approved? How long before Freeview renders that obsolete too even though they promise future proofing?

72 posts

Master Geek


  # 940966 26-Nov-2013 12:12
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Just to put this into one place, this issue is not limited to the JC Matthew box (maybe the subject line should be changed).

The same issue affects the Zinwell ZMT-640PVR.

See http://www.geekzone.co.nz/forums.asp?forumid=83&topicid=110523

Zinwell (through their support contact Graham) have said that it can't and won't be fixed:

 

24/04/13
The ZMT-640PVR was designed in late 2007 to the Freeview specifications and anticipated requirements at that time.
As more channels are added to the Freeview platform, performance will gradually deteriorate again
and Zinwell has advised that it is no longer possible to correct this with changes to the software.
The last software version to be released for this model is v1.2.4 which takes includes the changes
made by Freeview in late 2011.

After emailing Freeview support and Tim Diprose and getting no replies, I gave up and replaced the unit.


 






 
 
 
 




32 posts

Geek


  # 941061 26-Nov-2013 13:51
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I have raised the issue with Fair Go and hopefully other consumers will do this also, as if Fair Go get enough correspondence on this issue then maybe they will affect some sort of compensation to the consumers from Zinwell and JC Matthews and the FreeView company.  My set is only just 4 years old and I totally did not expect it to be made redundant in such a short time.  If I replace this set with another, what gaurantee do I have that the same won't happen in another four years time?  This is really not good enough and although you have had to replace your set, I urge you to raise the issue with Fair Go also.  They have a web form at tvnz.co.nz/fair-go which can be filled out and submitted.  I really think these companies should be paying some sort of compensation for a reduced product life.

2627 posts

Uber Geek


  # 941202 26-Nov-2013 18:32
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If Freeview certified boxes aren't even guaranteed to work properly with the Freeview service then, other than an EPG which (probably) works at the time of purchase, I'm wondering whether there is any point at all in preferring a FV certified box.

About the only thing it seems to guarantee is that useful features (60 second skip etc) have been removed, and lots of yummy DRM has been applies.

If Geekzone ever does another "ask Freeview" thread, it would be interesting to pose the question, in light of this issue, of what exactly FV certification guarantees a buyer.

Personally, if I had the JC Matthew box and had bought it in the last couple of years, I would return it to the retailer and cite the Consumer Guarantees Act.

1953 posts

Uber Geek


  # 941238 26-Nov-2013 19:48
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JimmyH:

Personally, if I had the JC Matthew box and had bought it in the last couple of years, I would return it to the retailer and cite the Consumer Guarantees Act.

+1
Also begs the question - If Panasonic and others can get it right why can't J C Mathews and Zinwell? Surely must be just the firmware?

72 posts

Master Geek


  # 941455 27-Nov-2013 08:33
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In the case of the Zinwell it apparently has to do with internal memory for storing the EPG. The information I was given says that the Zinwell has space for 4500 entries and there are now over 7000. This overload causes it to be sluggish.







32 posts

Geek


  # 941537 27-Nov-2013 10:07
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In this case they should do a product recall, replace the memory chip and reissue the product back to us.  They clearly underspecked the machine for future growth.

 
 
 
 


1953 posts

Uber Geek


  # 941585 27-Nov-2013 10:35
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Lashams: In this case they should do a product recall, replace the memory chip and reissue the product back to us.  They clearly underspecked the machine for future growth.

+1
It probably means it's not fit for the purpose any longer and should be upgraded, replaced or refunded by the manufacturer.
Would make an interesting test case. I hope Fair Go picks up the challenge.



32 posts

Geek


  # 941595 27-Nov-2013 10:44
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Fair Go will likely pick up the challenge if enough of us raise the issue with them.  Hopefully once they see the level of disatisfaction out there they will consider it a noteworthy story.  I think the good angle to raise it to them on is the fact that NZ is now totally digital and we need assurance from the set top suppliers and freeview that the equipment remains functional.  This is not broken equipment, it is a deliberate change by the freeview service which has made the equipment next to defunct.

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Uber Geek

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  # 941826 27-Nov-2013 16:35
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Done.



32 posts

Geek


  # 941953 28-Nov-2013 06:30
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I have also sent details of the issue to info@consumer.org.nz, the consumer watch organisation.  It may not get any action from them as I am not a paid up member but it may be worth lots of us submitting information to them also, and especially any paid up members.

6952 posts

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  # 942087 28-Nov-2013 10:22
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I think the issue here is that the distributors are no longer developing these products. They're either no longer in new zealand, or not in business any more or just plain not interested. Most of them are resellers, and not actual companies with a development team. That's what I meant about them bringing in products quickly rehashed for our market from China manufacturers.

So, I don't see much hope for long term support of these products. Your best bet is surely to return to where you purchased this from and try for a CGA refund. They won't be able to replace, as a) it's not broken anyway, and b) these products are long since not available. TIVO falls into that same boat for instance.

If they won't refund or credit towards something new then you're stuffed. Sell them or dump them, and then move on. Move on to something that works now Bazzer as no one can honestly play the future compatibility card mate! Your best bet surely lies in opting for a brand name device, which may offer some home of firmware updates/fix packs if freeview modify their broadcast method in the future.

435 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 942153 28-Nov-2013 11:20
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Jaxson: Sell them or dump them, and then move on. Move on to something that works now Bazzer as no one can honestly play the future compatibility card mate! Your best bet surely lies in opting for a brand name device, which may offer some home of firmware updates/fix packs if freeview modify their broadcast method in the future.

I just moved mine into the bedroom and unplug the aerial every time I want to watch something, not ideal but it works for me. I've got a MagicTV 3600 in the lounge now that hasn't missed a beat in 3 years. I would highly recommend the Magic TV pvr, their NZ supplier/distributor seems pretty onto it as well.

6952 posts

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  # 942190 28-Nov-2013 12:16
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butlerboy: I would highly recommend the Magic TV pvr

The Magic TV box actually has a decent lineage, in that it was in production in Hong Kong for quite a while and has a decent user interface also. 
Their native EPG looked awesome for example, but this had to be dropped to adapt into NZ's freeview with no EIT data offering:










32 posts

Geek


  # 942243 28-Nov-2013 13:35
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That native EPG does look really great

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