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2179 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 823


  Reply # 379049 12-Sep-2010 16:10
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I have been reading these threads with interest, as I am quite keen on getting a Freeview PVR - but I want both the epg and good video extraction (and it seems an approved box gets me the epg and an unapproved box gets me video extraction to a network - pick one!).

If I have read posts to this thread correctly the Magai TV drive is a SATA one, and the file systems are readable on a computer if the drive is attached to it.

My knowledge of electronics is sketchy (and my experience less), so I was wondering whether someone with better knowledge could comment on the following idea before I purchase - inspired by a mod I read about someone doing to their xbox. It is this:

1.  Drill a hole in the back of the MagicTV
2.  Cut the drive SATA cable, (except for possibly the ground and power wires), pull all the cut wires out the hole.
3.  Run the cut wires out the back to a two way switch (or switches)
4.  Connect one set of switch terminals to the wired running back into the Box, the others to a SATA connector.
5.  Connect the new SATA connector to a SATA-->ethernet adapter (or if preferred a SATA-->USB adapter)
6.  Connect adapter to PC or network
7.  Switched one way, the cable is simply rejoined - and should work like a normal Magic TV. Nothing they can do, nor any firmware upgrade can disable what has been done, because the box is just configured as normal.
8.  Power down the box, switch the switch to the other setting, and the drive is connected to the network and visible - and all files can be copied/converted etc.

Is this feasible? The parts seem cheap, and it would give all the advantages of a simple to use, high wife acceptance factor, integrated Freeview approved PVR without having to mess round with a HTPC etc. It would also have unconstrained video extraction.

Interested in peoples thoughts. If there are no obvious fishhooks I might pick up a Magic TV (or a cheaper Zinwell 640 which JB HIFI has for under $400 at the moment) and give it a go.

152 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 379301 13-Sep-2010 14:34
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It does sound feasible. But there is some potential problems, even if you succeed with the hardware.

One is it is not a M$ filesystem. So you are either happy to find something that can read jfs from Windoze or you are already using a Linux or BSD distro that can.

Another is it takes time to extract these files and that time has to also be wife friendly.

If you are familiar with Linux/BSD already then you may want to go the extra step and have live access to the files while the unit is running. Further reading - http://2lostkiwis.com/wordpress/mtv3600/


 
 
 
 


121 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 1


  Reply # 380622 16-Sep-2010 13:12
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Hi JimmyH

I think evanh has a valid comment on the time it takes. If that is a problem, then what about simply taking the sata connector to the back and then swapping drives when you want to remove the files? Basically just running an external drive. That way the unit is always available to record programs.

Whatever you do, please keep us all uptodate, perhaps starting a new thread and I would say there are  lot of us here who would like to see how this progesses on a MagicTV.

In choosing between MagicTV and Zinwell - I would recommend paying the bit more for the Magic as it is a much better unit. Seeing as you want to hack it anyway, perhaps you should contact the importers www.hooktech.co.nz and ask them if they have any refurbished units they would sell you. They won't sell you a brand new one as they only supply stores, but they do at times sell second hand refurbished units that stores won't buy off them. And the refurbished ones are cheaper. Just be specific about the fact that you want a second hand refurbished one or they will just send you off to Noel Leeming or somewhere. 

12 posts

Geek


  Reply # 381248 17-Sep-2010 13:27
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On Thursday evening (16th Sept.) our MagicTV did not record Masterchef Australia.  When I checked the recording list it was still set to record the series with the next "episode' scheduled for the following day (which did record OK).

What I would like to know is did anyone else have this exact problem (in which case it was probably a Freeview EPG glitch) or were we the only people to experience this (in which case it was probably our MTV).

Look forward to your responses.

18 posts

Geek


  Reply # 381253 17-Sep-2010 13:33
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Yes exact same problem .... and surprisingly the same programme !! MTV was missing only 1 of the 5 days of recording. Deleted the original series record and reset it, hasn't skipped since!

52 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 381334 17-Sep-2010 15:57
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What firmware are you running? I found that 3.12 started dropping some series off the list altogether and I had to re-enter them. Haven't had a problem so far with beta4. (Fingers crossed!)

293 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 2


  Reply # 381372 17-Sep-2010 17:48
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Did anyone have their Magic TV Box freeze today with the bad weather? We are in Wellington. We've owned the box for about a month now & this is the first time it has frozen on us. It was stuck at 12:07pm. We are on the firmware that came with the box - 3.12




Q6600 @ 3.2Ghz (400x8) | GA-X38-DQ6 | 4Gb Corsair Dominator@800Mhz 4-4-4-12 | HIS HD5870 | Creative X-fi Fatality Pro | 2xWD SATAII Caviar Black 640Gb / 1xSeagate SATAII 7200.12 1000Gb | 2xASUS IDE DVDRW | Silverstone OP1000 PSU | Silverstone TJ09 Case

1163 posts

Uber Geek


  Reply # 381377 17-Sep-2010 17:56

casewindow: Did anyone have their Magic TV Box freeze today with the bad weather? We are in Wellington. We've owned the box for about a month now & this is the first time it has frozen on us. It was stuck at 12:07pm. We are on the firmware that came with the box - 3.12


There was lightning around that time today.

293 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 2


  Reply # 381380 17-Sep-2010 18:06
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We have it plugged through a belkin surge protector, but the aerial in cable is just straight through to the aerial.

Should we consider a better level of protection...

Could the lightning have caused the box to crash?




Q6600 @ 3.2Ghz (400x8) | GA-X38-DQ6 | 4Gb Corsair Dominator@800Mhz 4-4-4-12 | HIS HD5870 | Creative X-fi Fatality Pro | 2xWD SATAII Caviar Black 640Gb / 1xSeagate SATAII 7200.12 1000Gb | 2xASUS IDE DVDRW | Silverstone OP1000 PSU | Silverstone TJ09 Case

1163 posts

Uber Geek


  Reply # 381392 17-Sep-2010 18:54

casewindow: We have it plugged through a belkin surge protector, but the aerial in cable is just straight through to the aerial.

Should we consider a better level of protection...

Could the lightning have caused the box to crash?


I would say it is a possibility through the aerial. Not sure if you can get a surge protector for the aerial.

293 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 2


  Reply # 381451 17-Sep-2010 21:46
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hmm I wonder if the tuners have been damaged. Seems to have been working normally this evening.




Q6600 @ 3.2Ghz (400x8) | GA-X38-DQ6 | 4Gb Corsair Dominator@800Mhz 4-4-4-12 | HIS HD5870 | Creative X-fi Fatality Pro | 2xWD SATAII Caviar Black 640Gb / 1xSeagate SATAII 7200.12 1000Gb | 2xASUS IDE DVDRW | Silverstone OP1000 PSU | Silverstone TJ09 Case

152 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 381483 17-Sep-2010 23:50
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I definitely did have crashes with 3.12. Always occurred when changing channels. Once I popped in the 3.13beta2 that problem vanished.


cb1

209 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 10


  Reply # 382877 21-Sep-2010 20:41
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I just noticed on the Hong Kong website for Magic tv http://www.magictv.com/hk/en/index.html that there are new models announced. Details of the models and their features are at http://www.magictv.com/hk/en/products.html. One of the most notable features is the MTV7000D has video inputs so that it is possible to record from external sources.

Hopefully these new models make it to our shores and some of the features will be made available in future firmware updates for the 3600TD already here.




cb

152 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 382962 22-Sep-2010 00:56
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Yeah, it's a little brain twister realising that the 3600/3700 models don't actually record. Not the encoding sense at least. They really only playback from the digital copy of the already encoded digital transmission. This is kind of a good thing, you can be sure it's not re-compressing and therefore not capable degrading quality on the HDD.

The 7000 model has the additional encoding and compression hardware, which is why it can accept A/V inputs.


917 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 38


  Reply # 383079 22-Sep-2010 10:43
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The MTV3700D's HK price is equivalent to NZ$600 including GST. The faster chip should mean no more fastforward / rewind stuttering and better upscaling and deinterlacing.

I don't think we'll see the MTV7000D in New Zealand. There are too many ways Freeview certification would conflict with its purpose.

The MTV3700D is going to be sold in Australia.

It's difficult to know what this means for us.

* The MTV3700D might arrive soon or sometime well into next year. Or never
* If sold in NZ, the unit may be identicle to the one sold in Australia, meaning the recordings will be encrypted on the HDD in accordance with Freeview Australia requirements - a severe downer.

I was looking at the MTV but the thought of spending alot of money when a new and much improved model might appear any time is very discouraging.

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