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6507 posts

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  Reply # 197453 23-Feb-2009 14:38
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Kiwi Pete: Again I can confirm none of those problems happen on a Zinwell - and many retailers currently have it for $299.
Only thing I've heard bad about the Zinwell (official or DSE variant) was that it ran hot, which is actually not a problem, just how it runs.

Zinwell can't do HD on component as it's an approved box, and you have to scale every channel to just one resolution, so no auto option for output resolution.  That's the differences there, everything else seems to work apparently.  At $299 the DSE version also has an hdmi cable.

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Master Geek


  Reply # 197461 23-Feb-2009 14:49
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Kiwi Pete: Again I can confirm none of those problems happen on a Zinwell - and many retailers currently have it for $299.


I can confirm that they all have problems, some similar some different, but so far my expeirence is that there are no rock solid DVBT boxes on the market in NZ. Some are better than others (search this forum for your favorite box and read the threads with problem reports. NONE are immune!). 
I personally have the following sitting on my testbed at present.ZinwellHomecastETKWorld

ALL have issues, but I can absolutely confirm that when the ET breaks up, NONE of the others do (4 way splitter with all boxes running similtanously. SO ITS NOT SIGNAL!!!!!!!!The clock drifts on ET, it does not on the Homecast (very similar box and remote, in fact other thans label and firmware it seems to be the same). Therefore its not freeview related.

The ET has some issues, if Pete actually took the bug reports seriously, worked with some people who are willing to help track down the bugs and had his "engineers" actually fix them rather than add new features with new bugs, he would have one of the best products.

 
 
 
 


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Geek


  Reply # 197463 23-Feb-2009 15:07
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I'm waiting for my refund from Freeviewshop - although he says he's refunding me the current sale price not what i paid fot it.  huh?  He says he tested my box on return and it had no faults.  how odd.  The STB must go faulty going south in transit and come right when going north.   i can’t think of any other explanation – especially now the mystery, nonexistent faults are no longer occurring with my new box.   I really feel like i was treated as a fool, as if i was a stupid non-technical consumer – many others would have given up in the face of his constant denial and smoke screen BS.

so yes, I am now the owner of vantage 6000T.  Same setup as with the ET but now I don’t have any pixelation, no audio drops outs, nor any distortion on the RCA outs.  A great picture, stable interface, quick channel changing, and it looks great too.  i'm very happy.  It was good to see it package well too, good solid cardboard, proper foam packing etc.  The ET packaging was falling apart after being posted three times.

no, it doesn’t' have a full EPG, just now/next but i can live with that.  The fact i can watch or record a program without missing key dialog or cringing/cursing every time the picture pixelates, is making viewing TV what it should be – relaxing 
 Haven't tried the PVR yet as it doesn’t recognise my external hard drive, but the PVR is a bonus for me and others have it working and seem happy with it.   I’m sure it will work for me with a different drive.
Fyi – i’m using a 6 month old Denon AVR-2308.  Again no digital audio dropouts with the Vantage – plenty with the ET

Good luck people.

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  Reply # 197476 23-Feb-2009 15:54
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mort: I'm waiting for my refund from Freeviewshop - although he says he's refunding me the current sale price not what i paid fot it. 
Of course that's wrong - you are entitled to a full refund if the goods are not of an 'acceptable quality' or 'fit for purpose'. The issue is really one of how to enforce the provisions of the Consumer Guarantees Act if the retailer doesn't play fair.

You can take the issue to a Disputes Tribunal, the process is described in detail on the Ministry of Consumer Affairs website. It costs $30 to file a claim with a value of less than $1,000.

I'm sure that some cynical traders rely on that fact that most consumers won't go to the trouble of making a formal claim, and they might settle for a less than 100% refund. Others simply ignore the findings of Disputes Tribunals - Decisions made by the Tribunals are not automatically enforced. If the Tribunal makes a decision in your favour the trader has 28 days to do what the Tribunal ordered. If the trader does not do what was ordered you can go to the District Court to apply for the order to be enforced.

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  Reply # 197483 23-Feb-2009 16:25
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Hinko: Anyone else with the issue please let us know here and let Lars at the Freeviewshop also know please, as he talks direct with the Chinese people.
Garglo was on about getting people to document this earlier but that was always a waste of time, well unless the engineers could be sent back in time to that exact point to test the units behavior. 

I really don't think this can be fixed without bringing the engineers here to observe it.  It may well be some local interferance not on the original broadcast stream, but this box does not handle it as well as the Zinwell and others do.

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 197485 23-Feb-2009 16:40
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Where are the most problems occuring??  I mean geographicaly speaking.

North Island or South Island? Just wondering if there is a common denominator there - Which would be hard to diagnose in china - Or back with suppliers.

Cheers


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Master Geek


  Reply # 197558 23-Feb-2009 20:19
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I'm in Wellington.  A regional problem(s) is not yet excluded.

Lars said they could not reproduce the problem in the Auckland region.  Anyone got it happening in Auckland? 

While it would be nice to have engineers here, streams can be sent to them to test with.  They are said to need the same AV gear for the drop out issue.

Interesting comment also about music making any gaps more obvious, there may be something in that.

Thank you for the replies.  (please don't stop!)

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 197565 23-Feb-2009 20:36
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Hinko: Lars said they could not reproduce the problem in the Auckland region.  Anyone got it happening in Auckland?
Just to clarify - the particular problem you're talking about is audio dropouts when using the eXtra Terrestrial optical audio output, is that correct?

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Master Geek


  Reply # 197569 23-Feb-2009 20:42
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Hinko: I'm in Wellington.  A regional problem(s) is not yet excluded.

Lars said they could not reproduce the problem in the Auckland region.  Anyone got it happening in Auckland? 

While it would be nice to have engineers here, streams can be sent to them to test with.  They are said to need the same AV gear for the drop out issue.

Interesting comment also about music making any gaps more obvious, there may be something in that.

Thank you for the replies.  (please don't stop!)


That's bollocks.  I'm in Auckland and I have dropouts regularly.  I doubt they even tried.

195 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 197571 23-Feb-2009 20:42
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Website http://www.satlinknz.co.nz/extra_terrestrial.html now says:

Current issues being addressed / investigated
 
Clock inconsistancies when receiver is on standby - Fixed 21 Nov 08 update

Distortion on bottom audio red & white output. Top ones are OK.
 
Updates ongoing.
 

195 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 197572 23-Feb-2009 20:45
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Deev8:
Hinko: Lars said they could not reproduce the problem in the Auckland region.  Anyone got it happening in Auckland?
Just to clarify - the particular problem you're talking about is audio dropouts when using the eXtra Terrestrial optical audio output, is that correct?


Yes, both optical and coaxial are equally effected, HDMI seems not to be for me.  The coaxial and optical digital outputs are common, just different forms.  Apparently HDMI is different, although that doesn't make that much sense to me as I assume it is all digital?

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Master Geek


  Reply # 197574 23-Feb-2009 20:53
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InspectorGadget:
Hinko: I'm in Wellington.  A regional problem(s) is not yet excluded.

Lars said they could not reproduce the problem in the Auckland region.  Anyone got it happening in Auckland? 


That's bollocks.  I'm in Auckland and I have dropouts regularly.  I doubt they even tried.


Can I ask that you call Lars Telephone (09) 817 5105 (9am-5pm Monday-Friday)
or email him sales@freeviewshop.co.nz with your phone number. 

He certainly seemed interested to progress the issue.

Please let us know how you get on.

205 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 197597 23-Feb-2009 22:03
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Hinko:
InspectorGadget:
Hinko: I'm in Wellington.  A regional problem(s) is not yet excluded.

Lars said they could not reproduce the problem in the Auckland region.  Anyone got it happening in Auckland? 


That's bollocks.  I'm in Auckland and I have dropouts regularly.  I doubt they even tried.


Can I ask that you call Lars Telephone (09) 817 5105 (9am-5pm Monday-Friday)
or email him sales@freeviewshop.co.nz with your phone number. 

He certainly seemed interested to progress the issue.

Please let us know how you get on.


  Email sent with as much detail as possible.  Copy attached below.


Hi Lars,

   A member on Geekzone said that you would be interested in knowing of anyone in the Auckland region who has this issue with the ET box.  I certainly do.  It is especially noticeable on TV6 and 7, with TV3 and other channels also sometimes affected. 

  Dropouts occur for a couple of seconds, to up to 20 seconds at a time.  One guaranteed way to fix it is to change channels and back again.  When doing this, you get always get a fraction of a second of audio from the “stuck” channel just as it changes to the new channel.

  I have the ET box wired up using an HDMI cable to a display, and the audio goes through an SPDIF cable to a Panasonic SA-PT460 home theatre system.   It has the latest Nov 21 ’08 firmware.

  If I can be of further assistance with this, please feel free to contact me.


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  Reply # 197605 23-Feb-2009 22:47
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Most, but not all, freeview|HD issues are reception related i'm afraid

The problem is if you are borderline in anyway problems aren't consistent.

Some simple examples

1. Missing one of the three mulltiplexes at selected times of the day
2. Major pixellation, but only on selected channels
3. Audio issues, but again not predictable
4. EPG doesn't always load
5. Clock issues

A lot of these are down to the quality of the digital broadcast. The Zinwell and other certified gear has been tested to work on very low thresholds but even it will fail from time to time. I've seen all of the above problems on offiical and non-official gear and usually a brand new roof mounted aerial with a direct RG6 feed fixes it. Also make sure it isn't down to torrential rain which can affect DVB-T from time to time.

Yes we have a bleeding edge terrestrial service and there are numerous bugs in the STBs, but there are a lot of variables involved. I have very clear and strong line of sight to waiatarua in auckland and the signal strength on DVB-T under heavy rain can vary dramatically, and one day we had some one running unsupressed equipment nearby and we lost all reception.




Generally known online as OpenMedia, now working for Red Hat New Zealand as a Solution Architect for all things Linux, Virtual and of course Cloud. Still playing with MythTV and digital media on the side.

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  Reply # 197668 24-Feb-2009 08:55
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openmedia: Most, but not all, freeview|HD issues are reception related i'm afraid

The problem is if you are borderline in anyway problems aren't consistent.

Some simple examples

1. Missing one of the three mulltiplexes at selected times of the day
2. Major pixellation, but only on selected channels
3. Audio issues, but again not predictable
4. EPG doesn't always load
5. Clock issues

A lot of these are down to the quality of the digital broadcast. The Zinwell and other certified gear has been tested to work on very low thresholds but even it will fail from time to time. I've seen all of the above problems on offiical and non-official gear and usually a brand new roof mounted aerial with a direct RG6 feed fixes it. Also make sure it isn't down to torrential rain which can affect DVB-T from time to time.

Yes we have a bleeding edge terrestrial service and there are numerous bugs in the STBs, but there are a lot of variables involved. I have very clear and strong line of sight to waiatarua in auckland and the signal strength on DVB-T under heavy rain can vary dramatically, and one day we had some one running unsupressed equipment nearby and we lost all reception.

It sounds fiar enough, but I'm not sure it explains audio dropouts on only some of the outputs, not all.  If it's signal related why doesn't it affect the HDMI output?  Personally, that's the only beef I have with my ET box (oh, and the PVR vapourware...).

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