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Topic # 61024 7-May-2010 12:17
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I couldn't find anything much here on this PVR, which I just picked up from 1-day.  It's supposedly identical to the Zinwell, which also doesn't have much recent discussion here (unless I'm blind).  I've only used it a bit, so I'm interested in other people's experience.  There is the discussion on it missing recordings, but I thought this might be a more general discussion and didn't want to take that too off topic.

Things I've noticed:

1) There's a funny buzzing noise on channel change/play.  It might only be on the analog out, can't remember if I hear it on my amp via coax.  It goes away after the channel locks on/starts playing.  It's not a biggie, but has anyone else noticed that too?

2) When recording two shows straight after each other, you lose about a second or soin the time that it switches recordings.  Often the start or end of the program is interrupted, i.e. it doesn't put the switch exactly in between the programs.  Not too annoying, but it would be better if the recordings overlapped.  A single recording has +2 minutes before and +10 after so why can't this happen to each recording?

3) Is there any way of checking which frequencies are currently tuned in, or check the strength/quality.  I haven't looked into manual scan yet, but my problem is that due to geography my aerial points at two transmitters, so I can pickup both.  One is better than the other though. On my old box, one was stronger but worse quality (this is the one that got picked by auto scan and had problems) and the other was weaker but better quality (rock solid).  I haven't had any problems with the PVR so far, but I'd like to know which got tuned in and what the signal's like.

4) I recorded Letterman the other night but the recording ended up 5 hours long!  Maybe an EPG error?  The other two that recorded have been OK.

5) What's the latest firmware?  I don't know what mine has but I remember the old boxes updates stopped being broadcast OA after some time.  Just want to check I'm on the latest.

6) Is there a way to manually record based on a timer or solely through the EPG?  What if I'm going to be away for two weeks and I know a show is starting but it's past the end of the EPG.  Am I screwed?

7) I series linked a few shows that have repeat screenings.  When I programmed one of them, the nect episode was such a repeat which got recorded, then the rec list was updated to the next new episode.  I suppose (haven't tested yet) that after that episode, it won't record the repeat (maybe the episodes have unique codes that the repeat shares?).  Not really a big deal if it des record both, until the HDD is full but I thought I read that sometimes the repeat is not HD (e.g. Lost)?

Which leads to:
8) I liked The Big Bang Theory and I noticed after Wednesday's episode that Sunday's episode was loaded as the next to record.  I thought Friday and Sundays were repeats so I thought it was odd that Friday was skipped but Sunday was recorded.  Turns out that new TBBT (and Two and a Half Men) are being moved to Sundays, so the PVR knew (thanks to the EPG) to record Sundays now, not Wednesdays.  Pretty handy.

Overall I like it so far.  Sure the menus are a bit budget, but it all seems to work (although I did have one white screen reboot early on?  nothing since) and the price is/was right.

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  Reply # 327682 7-May-2010 13:15
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1 - i've got mine set up with hdmi to the tv and spdif(optical cable) to my amp and haven't heard any buzzing. could be an analogue thing.
2 - i think you'll find other myfreeview pvr's do this as well. it can be a pain in the ass, if you watch the second recording first you have to keep it as the first shows ending is on it.
3 - go into manual tuning and type in the frequency you want to check. ie: in chch tvnz is broadcast on 47, mediaworks on 49 and kordia on 50 (from memory)
4 - not sure what happened there, i haven't had that before. i'd guess an epg error.
5 - not sure
6 - soley through the epg unfortunately. hadn't considered that scenario.
7 - seems to be a bit hit and miss as to what it will record when a show is repeated the same week
8 - this is probably my favourite feature. i record a lot of shows on prime and they seem to change times every other week on some shows (stargate atlantis)

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  Reply # 327684 7-May-2010 13:19
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bazzer: I couldn't find anything much here on this PVR, which I just picked up from 1-day. 

I picked one up too during that sale.


bazzer
1) There's a funny buzzing noise on channel change/play.  It might only be on the analog out, can't remember if I hear it on my amp via coax.  It goes away after the channel locks on/starts playing.  It's not a biggie, but has anyone else noticed that too?


I haven't noticed this. However I have noticed a low hum from the box itself. It is probably just a fan or the hard drive and you can hardly notice it. This could be your buzzing noise - could it be that your amp is picking this noise up when no other noise is playing?

bazzer
4) I recorded Letterman the other night but the recording ended up 5 hours long!  Maybe an EPG error?  The other two that recorded have been OK.

I haven't come across this issue. Was the extra time at the end or the beginning of the recording?

bazzer
5) What's the latest firmware? 


This is the JC matthew website download page:
http://www.jcmatthew.co.nz/support/download.html

Note that there is no firmware update available for download. I would assume we are running the latest. 

bazzer
6) Is there a way to manually record based on a timer or solely through the EPG?  What if I'm going to be away for two weeks and I know a show is starting but it's past the end of the EPG. 


As far as I am aware, series link is your only hope. Of course, that won't help for one off shows and movies. 

The PVR does have a 320 gig harddrive, which is supposed to be about 160 hours of SD recording. You could record an entire week and only miss 8 hours of TV. (Am kidding, of course). 

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 327689 7-May-2010 13:26
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I also picked one up on 1-Day the other day... for my Stepmother to use. She is currently using a 15 year old VCR with 12 year old tapes to record Std Def TV and play back on her new 42" LCD. Looks 'awful'! :-)

I was quite impressed with how easy the setup was and it all seems pretty easy to use. As you say, the interface is a bit clunky ... particularly the 'Freeview Approved' EPG interface... but that is also in comparison to using MediaPortal normally .

I had it connected to the TV via HDMI and certainly didn't notice the buzzing between channels you mention so it may be an analogue thing as butlerboy has mentioned. I'll be interested to see what others who have had it for longer think in reply to your queries.


Cheers



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  Reply # 327693 7-May-2010 13:35
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butlerboy: 1 - i've got mine set up with hdmi to the tv and spdif(optical cable) to my amp and haven't heard any buzzing. could be an analogue thing.
I'm silly.  I have mine set up the same (except I use coax), I don't use the analog.  It's just a quiet buzz and only occurs for about a second and only (I think) when the TV is doing the sound.  I might email JCMatthew about it but it's not really a big deal.

butlerboy: 2 - i think you'll find other myfreeview pvr's do this as well. it can be a pain in the ass, if you watch the second recording first you have to keep it as the first shows ending is on it.
For me it's been the other way around so far.  The start of the next program is on the end of the previous recording (about 1 minute).  Same issue though, you have to keep it until you watch the second show.

butlerboy: 3 - go into manual tuning and type in the frequency you want to check. ie: in chch tvnz is broadcast on 47, mediaworks on 49 and kordia on 50 (from memory)
Doesn't help me, because I'd like to know what frequencies are currently in use.  I guess I'll go to manal tuning and try the two frequencies and see which is best and rescan them that way.

patatrat: 4 - I haven't come across this issue. Was the extra time at the end or the beginning of the recording?
It was at the end.  As I watched it I wondered why the progress bar wasn't moving much and also vaguely crossed my mind that the HDD should have more room than it was reporting.

patatrat: 6- As far as I am aware, series link is your only hope. Of course, that won't help for one off shows and movies.
Or a new series that hasn't started yet.

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  Reply # 327696 7-May-2010 13:46
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bazzer:
butlerboy: 1 - i've got mine set up with hdmi to the tv and spdif(optical cable) to my amp and haven't heard any buzzing. could be an analogue thing.
I'm silly.  I have mine set up the same (except I use coax), I don't use the analog.  It's just a quiet buzz and only occurs for about a second and only (I think) when the TV is doing the sound.  I might email JCMatthew about it but it's not really a big deal.

it could be the hdd's fan you're hearing

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  Reply # 327698 7-May-2010 13:50
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bazzer:
butlerboy: 3 - go into manual tuning and type in the frequency you want to check. ie: in chch tvnz is broadcast on 47, mediaworks on 49 and kordia on 50 (from memory)
Doesn't help me, because I'd like to know what frequencies are currently in use.  I guess I'll go to manal tuning and try the two frequencies and see which is best and rescan them that way.


from memory if you use the channel up/down button you can step through all the scanned frequencies.



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  Reply # 327719 7-May-2010 14:29
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butlerboy:
bazzer:
butlerboy: 1 - i've got mine set up with hdmi to the tv and spdif(optical cable) to my amp and haven't heard any buzzing. could be an analogue thing.
I'm silly.  I have mine set up the same (except I use coax), I don't use the analog.  It's just a quiet buzz and only occurs for about a second and only (I think) when the TV is doing the sound.  I might email JCMatthew about it but it's not really a big deal.

it could be the hdd's fan you're hearing

It's coming out of the TV speakers so I don't think so.  Plus it is only for a short time during the change, it's not masked once the channel starts.  It simply stops.  Sort of like that random noise you sometimes get when you shut equipment down with the sound still on, you know?



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  Reply # 327720 7-May-2010 14:30
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butlerboy:
bazzer:
butlerboy: 3 - go into manual tuning and type in the frequency you want to check. ie: in chch tvnz is broadcast on 47, mediaworks on 49 and kordia on 50 (from memory)
Doesn't help me, because I'd like to know what frequencies are currently in use.  I guess I'll go to manal tuning and try the two frequencies and see which is best and rescan them that way.


from memory if you use the channel up/down button you can step through all the scanned frequencies.

Not sure what you mean?  You mean scanning through the channels?  It doesn't tell you which mux it comes from though.  Or is this in the manual tuning section?  I mgiht have to have a play...

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  Reply # 327724 7-May-2010 14:38
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bazzer:
butlerboy:
bazzer:
butlerboy: 3 - go into manual tuning and type in the frequency you want to check. ie: in chch tvnz is broadcast on 47, mediaworks on 49 and kordia on 50 (from memory)
Doesn't help me, because I'd like to know what frequencies are currently in use.  I guess I'll go to manal tuning and try the two frequencies and see which is best and rescan them that way.


from memory if you use the channel up/down button you can step through all the scanned frequencies.

Not sure what you mean?  You mean scanning through the channels?  It doesn't tell you which mux it comes from though.  Or is this in the manual tuning section?  I mgiht have to have a play...


this is in the manual tuning section. you can either type in the frequency or use the channel up/down (could be arrow up/down??? you'll have to have a play.) to check which muxes you have tuned in and what signal strenght and quality you're getting.

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