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  Reply # 170813 13-Oct-2008 08:06
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bazzer:
Ryrager: I think the ET box has the potential to be good.... not great but good.
He insists the digital audio out problems are signal based, yet other audio outputs are unaffected. Some feedback to aid in testing would be helpful. Smarmy comments are not helpful. If my box reports signal quality 100%, what else am I to think?


I've had the same problem with signal outputs.  I was watching TVNZ 6 the other day, the optical audio was up and down every few seconds.  Signal quality was 100% and strength 60%, picture quality was perfect right through.  I switched to TV3 and had similar problems.  I've also had it on TV 1.

Last night during NCIS on TV3 I had the optical audio drop out and the audio on the RCA outputs was fine.  had the TV speakers and the receiver on and it was very obvious when only the TV speakers were going and since the Dolby Digital light on my receiver is as subtle as a brick it was easy to notice it going off.


I do not believe Peter's spin about it being interference as in a digital signal I would expect the picture to be affected too.


Returning the unit is not an option, it would just be nice to get firmware that works so I can start recommending these to my friends (and the addition of the "bypass" option was much appreciated so it is not all complaints).


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  Reply # 171793 17-Oct-2008 13:44
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I purchased an extra terrestrial HD freeview box yesterday (as a result of reading this forum) and have a couple of comments that someone might be able to assist with.

I live in Mt Eden (auckland) and my aerial (installed about 6 years ago) has a direct line of sight to the Waitakeres. I get excellent analogue tv reception on all channels including prime/Triangle/Juice etc.

I had the extra terrestrial box hooked up in about a minute and setup was a breeze (auto tune). I noticed that the unit was displaying 100% for the Q(uality) indicator, but the S(ignal) was very low - I'd guess 10-20%.

The firmware version is 1.04.

The picture was vividly clear but was pixelating and breaking up frequently - Probably not surprising given the Signal strength indicator.

I tried running through the manual tune but couldnt get the signal strength to improve.

I got an aerial installation firm to come out this morning and check my aerial - His meter said the signal strength was very good (65db) - he reckoned anything from 40 upwards should be ok. He also measured the error rate (didnt know they could do that) - He said it was very small and perfectly ok. He also tested my cable from the wall to the unit - 'Its fine' he said.

Unfortunately he didnt have an alternative unit (he didnt sell me the box) to test my aerial - but he said the meter was the most reliable test anyway.

The analogue reception (now that the aerial is routed through the HD box) is poor on Maori/Prime/TriTv.

Does it sound like a dodgy box - has anyone else had this sort of issue?

Any words of advice?

 





Nothing is impossible for the man who doesn't have to do it himself - A. H. Weiler

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 171797 17-Oct-2008 14:04
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robjg63:

I purchased an extra terrestrial HD freeview box yesterday (as a result of reading this forum) and have a couple of comments that someone might be able to assist with.

I live in Mt Eden (auckland) and my aerial (installed about 6 years ago) has a direct line of sight to the Waitakeres. I get excellent analogue tv reception on all channels including prime/Triangle/Juice etc.

I had the extra terrestrial box hooked up in about a minute and setup was a breeze (auto tune). I noticed that the unit was displaying 100% for the Q(uality) indicator, but the S(ignal) was very low - I'd guess 10-20%.

The firmware version is 1.04.

The picture was vividly clear but was pixelating and breaking up frequently - Probably not surprising given the Signal strength indicator.

I tried running through the manual tune but couldnt get the signal strength to improve.

I got an aerial installation firm to come out this morning and check my aerial - His meter said the signal strength was very good (65db) - he reckoned anything from 40 upwards should be ok. He also measured the error rate (didnt know they could do that) - He said it was very small and perfectly ok. He also tested my cable from the wall to the unit - 'Its fine' he said.

Unfortunately he didnt have an alternative unit (he didnt sell me the box) to test my aerial - but he said the meter was the most reliable test anyway.

The analogue reception (now that the aerial is routed through the HD box) is poor on Maori/Prime/TriTv.

Does it sound like a dodgy box - has anyone else had this sort of issue?

Any words of advice?

 

 

 


Rob, download the latest firmware from here . Did you manually tune on channels 29, 33 and 45 which are the ones for Waitarua?  The Q and and S are back to front on ver 1.04 but is fixed with 1.05 which is the current version.

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  Reply # 171800 17-Oct-2008 14:11
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more than likely, you have got a weak sig off skytoer, by accident

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  Reply # 171801 17-Oct-2008 14:13
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It's a pity you were sold a unit by someone with the original firmware. (I always update to the latest version just before despatch). One problem with your vers 1.04 firmware, is that the signal level and quality indicators are reversed (except in the aerial installation section). I'd recommend that you upgrade to the latest version immediately by downloading 1.05 and following the instructions in your manual. There is also some good info on this at the site as follows> http://www.satlinknz.co.nz/extra_terrestrial.html
One common problem is that some people end up with their ET tuned to less than optimum sites if more than one are within reach of your aerial. Often it's best to use a basic aerial during the tuning stage to ensure only the strongest signals are available, then switch back to your good aerial afterwards.

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  Reply # 171805 17-Oct-2008 14:40
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Hi Just wondering if there has been any news on the upgraded firmware? 1.06 or maybe a major revision at 1.1 even?

Does anyone have any info?

Thanks

Ryan

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  Reply # 171809 17-Oct-2008 14:52
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I Keep hearing the overlapping of transmitters blamed for bad signals etc. This is certainly true in some cases, but what would be much more useful would be a simple guide for people to test what signals/freqencies/results they have, so they can post more info and potentially help track down a possible issue IF cross signals are not the problem.

To do this, you need to press the list button, then:
scroll to TV1/TV2 press "ok" and note the frequency.
scroll to TV3/C4 press "ok" and note the frequency.
scroll to Maori TV press "ok" and note the frequency.

Then compare the frequncies to the ones from the transmitter you want/think you are connected to. If they match then its not a mistuned frequency. See here for frequencies.
http://www.freeviewshop.co.nz/digital-terrestrial-i-8.html

In my case I am in Hamilton so,
Te Aroha = 46 (674Mhz)-TVNZ, 48(690Mhz)-TV3, 50(706Mhz)-Kordia
Infill = 49 (698), 51(714), 47(682).

So on ET box using "list" button, i get.
TVNZ=674Mhz
TV3=690Mhz
Maori=706Mhz

Which confirms I am getting ALL my signals from the Te Aroha site.

I can say for definate that I am only tuned to one site and I get pixelation, I can also state that at present I think my problems are caused by bad cabling. Once I fix that i'll either have a solid signal or I will have eliminated both cable and transmission from the equation.

For the OP, definately upgrade to 1.5, it fixes quite a few things.

Final point, I upgraded 2 boxes the day 1.5 came out (see earlier posts to show isssues I had/caused).
Both boxes are left on 24/7. I have had ZERO lockups on either of these boxes since upgrading (ie more than 2 weeks). Before 1.5 these boxes locked up every 1-2 days. So (in my case) 1.5 has fixed other problems as well.

As far as I can can tell there are only 4 outstanding issues with ET boxes.
1/ Time on front of display while on standby
2/ Not saving setting from menu (use remote buttons as work around)
3/ Breakup of audio on Coax (particularly bad on C4)
4/ Audio quality on bottom AV outlets (use top ones as work around)

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  Reply # 171810 17-Oct-2008 14:57
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  Reply # 171823 17-Oct-2008 15:46
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I will try the firmware upgrade this afternoon - I noticed that I left the unit on this morning and it seems to have locked up - I thought it did that one other time as well (I've only had it 24hrs).

I thought I read that 1.04 was ok and that 1.05 only fixed some problem with cue tv in Hamilton or thereabouts - then I see looking back there were 2 versions of 1.04 - so who knows.

So regarding the manual tune option, If Waitakare is my 'best' option (I guess this Waiatarua on that reference doc) I select manual tune and try 29 and let it tune and see what that does - If it was seeing it ok would it pick up all the channels or do I have to repeat that step for each of the three channels listed (ie 29, 33, 45). That bit doesnt quite make sense to me.

Thanks for the responses so far - much appreciated.

Robert




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  Reply # 171828 17-Oct-2008 16:21
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Heres a little background which is my understanding of how it all hangs together (feel free to correct me!).

In NZ the Freeview consortium choose to use the UHF frequency to transmit around the country, the UHF frequencies were already broken up into frequency bands with a 8Mhz seperation, many of those channels had already been used (eg for Sky Analogue, Prime, etc) and some were reserved.

From the left over slots a plan was developed to give NZ wide coverage (75% and 90%??), including future areas which would require rejigging frequencies and/or reusing frequencies as other services were retired (ie Sky analogue).

For each area 3 frequencies were required 1 for TVNZ, 1 for TV3 and one for Kordia to carry other services (Maori, Parliment, Audio/Radio plus others). Within those frequencies a Multiplexer allows many channels to be overlaid into a single frequency (multiplexed together wihtin the available bandwidth), ie here in Hamilton, TVNZ is allocated channel 46 on the Te Aroha transmitter and within that frequency they multiplex TV1/TV2/TVNZ6/TVNZ7, etc), Kordia uses channel 50 (706Mhz) and multiplexes Maori, Parliment, TvCentral, Freeview Demo, etc).

The use of the word "channel" for UHF spectrum can be confused when we also use it to describe Channel 1 (TV1), Channel 2,3,4 (2, Tv3, C4) etc. The old Channel 1 terminology is the Analogue (VHF) channel used by the first TV Channel to transmit in NZ. As we move into the digital age, channels will dissapear and stations will brand as their names "one", C4, TV2, Sports Extra, etc ie they will become stations or brands, not channels.

Some areas also needed infill to complete the coverage or fill in spots, so another set of 3 frequencies are used for that reason, although these frequencies can be polerised either in the vertical or horizontal plane to reduce cross interference (you need to rotate your UHF aerial 90deg to swap between the 2 polarities, but if the transmissions are strong enough the UHF aerial will pick up both anyway.

The plan reuses frequencies up and down the country but trys to avoid reuse where interfereance would occur, but sometimes you can acutally get a signal on a frequency in your area that is coming from a distant transmitter (unlikely but possible). Kind of like getting 2 FM stations on a frequency as you go over the Bombays becuase the same frequency is used by 2 different stations, 1 in Auck another in the Waikato.


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Reply # 171833 17-Oct-2008 17:11
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Thanks for the advice so far.

I have updated the firmware to 1.05 - I reformatted 2 USB flash drives to FAT32 and it only seemed to recognise the second one. Just wouldnt see the first one at all - it was a 512mb flashdrive that I have never had any issues with in the 4 years or so that I have had it. Anyway the second old crappy 64MB flash drive was recognised and the firmware now shows 1.05 - so Its loaded ok.

I noticed a couple of times that the STB seemed to reboot a couple of times when I moved it - I'm still not convinced that something isnt a bit flaky about it.

Anyway - The Signal and Quality indicators dont seem to have changed position or what they are telling me - Quality 100% (all blue indicator bar) and the Signal shows maybe 10% of the blue bar when its plugged into my rooftop aerial.

I did the manual tune - with the 29,33,45 which seemed to also flash up the highest signal/quality when I watched it autotune initially.

The picture is still breaking up quite often on the main aerial.

I hooked the STB up to a pair of rabbit ears that I borrowed and the channels are now showing around 80-100% Quality and 40-50% on the signal strength - I generally get very bad reception on the usual UHF Maori TV/Triangel/Prime etc on Rabbits ears. Anyway - the picture is cracking up a bit less - but still not what I would call great.

I cant really understand why the STB is having such an issue with the rooftop aerial from the test the aerial guy did this morning and from the 'if you get good prime/Maori/Triangle on UHF' rule of thumb I should be getting 100% signal. Very confused now.
I really want this to work - I dont want to buy a Zinwell frying pan!

Maybe time for beer....




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  Reply # 171841 17-Oct-2008 18:39
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Hi guys, I too have just recently purchased a ET box. All is well - didn't Survivor look amazing?
Can someone tell me why the volume on TV3 is so much quieter than the other channels? Is this a ET issue or TV3? Cheers

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  Reply # 171847 17-Oct-2008 19:41
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Yes Tv3 is lower.  Complained to them about 2 weeks ago via their We page.  Heard nothing.  Maybe give them a phone call and get on to the technical engineering section.  Freeview Satellite is OK its only Terrestrial where the problem is. I'd call, but I'm off for a holiday later tonight.

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  Reply # 171849 17-Oct-2008 19:47
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Kanz: Hi guys, I too have just recently purchased a ET box. All is well - didn't Survivor look amazing?
Can someone tell me why the volume on TV3 is so much quieter than the other channels? Is this a ET issue or TV3? Cheers


TV3 is the only channel currently transmitting a high quality Dolby AC3 feed. if you have your receiver set to Bypass mode (generally the preferred choice) you'll get AC3 on TV3 and AAC on the other channels. AC3 may appear quieter as it provides a fuller dynamic range and hence the "quieter  bits" maybe quieter. Also, TV3 may have a lower modulation level on their AC3 channel. You can force the receiver to AAC for all channels if you want uniformity across all channels, but levels may still vary a little. This isn't an ET problem as such.

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  Reply # 171860 17-Oct-2008 20:51
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Hi Again,

Just wondering - As I mentioned earlier I updated my firmware to 1.05 today.
Since then the unit has hung up several times and made a loud peeeping sound - sometimes it has rebooted itself and one time I had to power it off because it just sat there making this loud peeping noise and wouldnt do anything else. A couple of those times was when I was in the EPG.

This isnt normal behaviour for an ET box is it?




Nothing is impossible for the man who doesn't have to do it himself - A. H. Weiler

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