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  Reply # 159472 25-Aug-2008 08:55
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Garglo: The sooner the Analogue broadcasts go the better. I hope it doesnt drag on to 2012 which is the suggested cutoff.



2012 is not the shutdown date for analogue broadcasts. SOmetime during 2012 it is expected that the analogue shutdown date will be confirmed. Realistic expectations at present is that this will be sometime around 2014.

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  Reply # 159473 25-Aug-2008 08:59
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sbiddle, yes you're right, the receiver can output 2 channel only with a 2 channel dolby source, -yes you don't have to then simulate a theatre mode etc.  Problem is that not all channels output a dolby soundtrack.  Currently really only tv1 and tv3 do dolby.

Under the setup menu you can choose pcm or ac3 as the digital output method.
Dolby 5.1 only works if you select ac3.
PCM only allows dolby 2.0 output, even if the program source is 5.1
PCM allows the standard mpeg audio present on all channels.

Therefore, when a 5.1 show comes on, you have to select ac3.
With ac3 selected, you can only watch channels with dolby soundtracks.
Switching to TV2 etc, where they only have mpeg audio, you will get no sound out of a receiver, unless you select PCM output in the setup menu.
Selecting PCM currently means you have audio dropouts on mpeg audio soundtracks, so essentially you can only use the digital out currently to pass the 5.1 audio to your receiver.  This works fine for me as I only really turn on the receiver when it's a proper 5.1 source.

But the firmware update should fix this.
Hope this explains the situation, it's a vicious loop of what soundtrack you want to hear and what aspect ratio the show is broadcast in etc etc....

 
 
 
 


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Master Geek


  Reply # 159482 25-Aug-2008 09:46
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inichol: Anyone else getting intermittent pixeliation with this box. Happens every few minutes on all channels that I have tried and lasts for less than one second (but annoying). Seems to be on all outputs including composite.
Same channels on Sky show no pixelisation at all.
Seems to be getting good UHF signal strength with the old UHF channels quite clear.
Notice that with the ET receiver signal strength is about 80% length of bar but quality is only about 25 to 30% length of bar. Is this normal?


Yes, I moved one of my boxes into a different room which has weaker UHF reception and I noticed occasional breakups (think T3 like fluid cop images). It slowly got worse until it was more than once a minute. I just repowered the box and its much improved. I suspect there is a bug which slowly degrades based on UHF quality and interference. Does this sound like your problem, does a power (on back of box) recycle improve it?

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 159691 25-Aug-2008 20:10
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Anyone out there had any experience with the satmax DTT,HD unit(SM801)??
its a Coship product.
we had a unit, was useless...typical coship...software is usually stuffed somewhere in thier units..but they might have fixed it by now...also being flogged off by supreme antennas...don't think they have sold many?

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  Reply # 159692 25-Aug-2008 20:12
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Note, CH.CH...Rangiora ...DTT .tranmitter had some sort of problem today...low power on TVNZ ch, fine on others, wierd!!!

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  Reply # 159796 26-Aug-2008 09:44
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Yeah friend of mine in Lower Hutt has this happen to him every Sunday from lunch till 5pm ish.  TVNZ channels just drop off.  Weird.

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  Reply # 159811 26-Aug-2008 10:27
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Questions/observations about the ET box:

1) Couldn't get the EPG to come up?  The manual says just to push EPG button, but I tried that and didn't notice anything happening.

2) Sound.  I had it hooked up via HDMI to my amp but I couldn't get 5.1 from anything.  I thought Women's Murder Club was HD/5.1.  I'm sure I had the audio set to AC3 in the menu and to Dolby in the audio menu but it was only reported by my amp as 2 channel PCM.  Is this a known problem?  I haven't tried playing with the amp or using coaxial/optical out yet.

3) I noticed a bit of breakup on some of the channels, but not very much or very often.  Turns out it was tuned into Waiatarua (some distance from me) when I expected it to be Pinehill (just up the hill from me).  Funnily enough, from my position I believe the two transmitters are in line so I can pick up both signals.  Once I tuned to the Pinehill frequencies, my quality (or strength, I'm not sure which as it's reported differently in two places) went to 100% solid and I didn't notice any problems.  I don't think I can pick up Prime from Waiatarua so that's pretty impressive I think.

4) Different resolutions on different channels.  It's a bit of a problem for my TV as it takes a while to decide what it wants to display when the resolution changes.  It just adds a second or so to channel changes so it's not too bad.  If I could get the EPG to work it would be better as I wouldn't have to change channel to see what's on the other channels.  Also, could set the output to a fixed resolution (e.g. 720p) but I'd prefer to keep extra scaling steps to a minimum (not sure what my amp/tv is doing).

That's all I can think of for the time being.  In general, it's great!  So glad to finally get away from my dodgy analog reception and onto crystal clear picture.

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  Reply # 159814 26-Aug-2008 10:44
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For what its worth, here are my observations on the ET box so far.

1. With the HDMI connected to the TV and the digital cable (optical) connected to the amp I get 5.1 from Channels 1 and 3 only. I have noticed no breakups of sound or the picture. But I get no sound from any other channels with the optical cable even if at the PCM setting. I have not tried using LR analogue cable yet.

2. I connected the component output to may Arcam receiver, which does not put out HD signal to the TV I think. Sound is as before and picture is OK. But if I try to do anything to the amp like changing the volume, then a horizontal bar shows up on the picture. Once the new volume setting (up or down does not matter) is achived, the horizontal bar disapears and the picture is OK.

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  Reply # 159817 26-Aug-2008 10:50
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When pressing the EPG button, you should see "loading" appear on the screen, and a few seconds later the EPG appears. It sounds like you have a faulty box - haven't seen your problem before. You should get Dolby Digital via optical or coax on TV1 and 3 currently when the ET is set to AC3. Not sure about via HDMI as I don't have a receiver capable of decoding audio via HDMI yet.

BTW, I have a a shipment of ET boxes arriving tomorrow morning, so if anyone is interested in getting one or more at a good price, PM me and I'll send you details.

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  Reply # 159829 26-Aug-2008 11:17
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1) EPG, do you have latest firmware, 1.03 I think it is.  EPG takes a while to load, but does come up.  Try reboot, turning power off at switch at back.  Does work for me no probs.


2) Not sure if surround 5.1 is sent out over hdmi in this particular box.  Possibly isn't, but no problem, connect via digital coax out or optical out and this will achieve what you want.  Set menu to AC3 and select dolby soundtrack on each channel that has it.  (current problem that firmware will hopefully fix is that under these settings you will get 5.1 but will get no sound when you change to a channel with no dobly soundtrack)


3) yes info on the channel banners shows S and Q letters wrong way around.  No biggy though once you know what you're looking for.  Go with the tv install section of the main menu, this has an aerial alignment page

4) not entirely sure that this is correct, but basically what I've told every one to do, is go into the settings page of the main menu and physically set the box to the output that corresponds with your tv.  I know some channels are 576, 720 or 1080, but this box does a good job of scaling and will usually give the same or better results than letting your tv down or up scale to it's native resolution.

This box has some quirks, but once you adapt to get the results you need, you get a stunning picture for a stunning price.  Simple as that.


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  Reply # 159877 26-Aug-2008 13:39
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Jaxson:

4) not entirely sure that this is correct, but basically what I've told every one to do, is go into the settings page of the main menu and physically set the box to the output that corresponds with your tv.  I know some channels are 576, 720 or 1080, but this box does a good job of scaling and will usually give the same or better results than letting your tv down or up scale to it's native resolution.


Take TV3 for an example, I just figured its 1080i, the box could output it at 720p, then my amp might leave it at 720p but then my TV will scale it to whatever it does (it's HD ready, 768 lines).  I thought I'd be better to go 1080i to the TV and let it scale it.  My amp is capable of upscaling (to 1080p, not that my TV accepts that) but I don't think it messes with 720p <-> 1080i.  When I get more of a chance to play with it I'll test the different configurations and decide which does best.


Jaxson: This box has some quirks, but once you adapt to get the results you need, you get a stunning picture for a stunning price.  Simple as that.

Totally agree.


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  Reply # 160009 26-Aug-2008 23:02
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Picture breaking up resolved

Located in Mairangi Bay. Having very bad picture and sound breakouts on all channels. Have SKY UHF Antenna which is pointed at Pine Hill. Auto tuned freeview channels but found picks up Waiatarua channels as well as Pine Hill channels.
Put 6db antennuator in aerial lead and lost all my freeview channels. What had happened was that the auto tune had tuned in the off beam weak Waiatarua channels. As there was very little signal this was the cause of the picture breaking up.

Retuned ET box with attenuator still in place so that its now forced to pick up the local stronger Pine Hill channels.
Now all channels 100% quality and 70% signal strength
Now removed attenuator so that I can receive  good strong PRIME analog signal. All Freeview channels remained at 100% quality and 70% signal strength. No more picture and sound breakups (so far)

Note that as previously mentioned post the quality is shown as signal strength and signal strength as quality but with scale reversed (ie stronger signal has shorter bar) These had me confused for a while.
Hopefully firnware update will fix up.

Also hope that firmware update is not too far away that will allow recording via USB port.

As others have said once you understand the behaviour of these box's they seem to work very well - exception being poor s video and composite outputs

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  Reply # 160169 27-Aug-2008 15:03
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inichol: Picture breaking up resolved

Located in Mairangi Bay. Having very bad picture and sound breakouts on all channels. Have SKY UHF Antenna which is pointed at Pine Hill. Auto tuned freeview channels but found picks up Waiatarua channels as well as Pine Hill channels.
Put 6db antennuator in aerial lead and lost all my freeview channels. What had happened was that the auto tune had tuned in the off beam weak Waiatarua channels. As there was very little signal this was the cause of the picture breaking up.

Retuned ET box with attenuator still in place so that its now forced to pick up the local stronger Pine Hill channels.
Now all channels 100% quality and 70% signal strength
Now removed attenuator so that I can receive  good strong PRIME analog signal. All Freeview channels remained at 100% quality and 70% signal strength. No more picture and sound breakups (so far)

Note that as previously mentioned post the quality is shown as signal strength and signal strength as quality but with scale reversed (ie stronger signal has shorter bar) These had me confused for a while.
Hopefully firnware update will fix up.

Also hope that firmware update is not too far away that will allow recording via USB port.

As others have said once you understand the behaviour of these box's they seem to work very well - exception being poor s video and composite outputs

You can manually tune the frequencies too.  I had the same problem and that's what I did to fix it.

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  Reply # 160181 27-Aug-2008 15:35
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Yeah consult http://lincrad.co.nz/transmittersites.html to find what frequencies you should be receiving and enter these manually.  Some areas naturally can receive some signals from multiple transmitters.  Anyway, check unter the aerial tuning page of the main menu as this allows you to check signal strength on different frequencies.  (And the strength and quality labelling is correct here as well). 

On that note, you'd expect to see a signal strength of less than 100% in most cases, and the quality should hopefully be up at 100%.  Once you know this you don't really need any lettering on the scale bars.  Adjust to get the weakest bar as close to 100% as possible.

Also, Eddy, your box got sent out today.  Went courier for you so should arrive soon.  Enjoy and let me know how you get on.

Cheers all,
Jackson.

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  Reply # 160308 27-Aug-2008 23:27
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New ET Firmware vers 1.04 pre-release.

I've just had a chance to try a new pre-release ET firmware release, especially re-worked for the audio problems. (vers 1.04). There's good news and bad news, depending on what type of user you are. The setup audio menu now has a "Bypass" and a "PCM" setting. If you use optical or coax for audio connected to a HT receiver, this now works exactly as it should. Bypass gives you nice clean AC3 Dolby digital on TV1 & 3 and good clean PCM for the other TV channels without any intervention. The PCM mode gives you PCM on all channels. The Audio key on the remote now simply brings up a menu with L/R/stereo switching only.
The bad news is that audio over HDMI is now broken and distorted, so it will be back to the drawing board for the developers. I'm encouraged by the fact that in the short time I've been testing this evening, I haven't noticed any audio dropouts via opt/coax. These are great receivers, especially at the price. I've noticed that many SD programs, once upscaled, look so good, it's hard to tell them apart from HD transmissions.

BTW, for those who've paid in advance for ET Receivers, many thanks for your patience. My allocation arrived this afternoon, and are packed up ready for courier collection tomorrow morning. I stiil have some available if anyone would still like one. They come with a quality HDMI cable, basic component cable and basic composite/audio cable. PM me if you're interested.

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