Time Warner HD DVR

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Tim Jin, Oct 24, 2004.

  1. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    Time Warner has a HD DVR out. It actually works. The HD recording is very clean.

    Has anyone else tried it?

    When are they going to release a firmware to fix the bugs?
     
  2. Keith Plucker

    Keith Plucker Screenwriter

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    I was just notified that they are now available in Torrance. I will probably pick one up tomorrow.

    I am interested in any bugs you discovered. Could you give a brief list of any that come to mind?

    Thanks,
    Keith
     
  3. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    There are a lot of bugs, but the recent one that I had is the series recording. I had to redo my shows to record in a daily/weekly basis.

    Overall, it does the job, but nowhere close to a Tivo.

    The SA8000HD does the job.
     
  4. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    Yahoo Groups has a pretty active listserv on the SA8000HD. Try searching for "explorer_8000".
     
  5. Keith Plucker

    Keith Plucker Screenwriter

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    Thanks Tim I signed up for the yahoo group. I also discovered there was a Hidef PVR section over on AVS that had some good information. Apparently TW is starting to roll our a new model, the 8300. I am not sure what they are offering in Torrance yet but I will report back.

    -Keith
     
  6. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    During the first quarter next year, Time Warner is going to offer another HD DVR box from Pioneer. That is what they told me when I called.
     
  7. Keith Plucker

    Keith Plucker Screenwriter

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    Well, I went in today and tried to pick up a unit. They wouldn't do it. I was told the setup process is too complex so they require an installer to come out. The person I spoke with said when they rolled out the boxes on the east coast, 90% of the people couldn't get it working correctly. This required a repair tech to go out and since repair techs are more expensive than installers, they decided to require installation by a TW tech.

    After my eyes rolled back to their correct position, I asked what model the unit was, he didn't know. He also didn't know if it had DVI/HDMI out. Well, at least I got the first 3 months free. The install is scheduled for the 13th.

    -Keith
     
  8. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    They also told me the same thing. It's just a box swap, easy as that. I don't know what is the big deal. Whatever...

    The SA8000HD has DVI out, but the port isn't enable yet. The only useful ports are, component and the audio. The s video port is pretty worthless because the box doesn't output in 480i at the same time as HD. You can set the box to output in standard def via s video, but you have to switch the box to do SD and than back to HD for high def.
     
  9. Ken Chui

    Ken Chui Supporting Actor

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    Swapping wasn't the hard part; getting the HD service activated was. It took two days of phone calls to set things straight with TW; with everything in order, I'm mostly satisfied. Still no ABC or FOX in HD (apparently TW is still in negotiations with both), but I do receive 120+ additional digital channels and my cable bill was also lowered by $6 per month. [​IMG] It would be nice if the HDMI port was made active eventually, for no other reason than to free up one of my component inputs.
     
  10. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    Really?? I didn't know that Time Warner were negotiating with ABC and Fox. I still get both of them.

    How long has this been going on? I haven't read anything with Time Warner and the networks.

    Back to the HD DVR bugs. If you are going to use it in your bedroom, I would think twice because you can hear the hard drive ticking in a quiet room. It's much more annoying than a wall clock ticking through the night.

    Picture in Picture is nice, but I've only used it once. It does the job, but its glitchy and I much rather prefer recording a show and watching another.

    With the dual tuners, you can record two different shows at the same time or you can record one show and be channel surfing, which is nice.

    If you have more than a handful of shows that has been previously recorded, it is very hard to manage. I wish that the software would divide each show in their own folder or directory.

    The program guide is not always correct. Often times, if a show goes over its time frame or start a few minute earlier, the DVR won't catch it. So, if you don't manually set the recording to start 1-10 minutes sooner, you will miss the beginning. If you don't set the DVR to record 1 minute to 2 hours longer, you may miss the ending.

    This is not a problem if you only watch regular channels, but its a problem when you want to record a show on HBO.

    The box has like a 1 hour buffer. In a way, it is constantly recording. For example, you are watching a show like ER of the live feed, and you were 40 minutes into it, but something happened that you miss the last 20 minutes. You can tell the DVR to record that show and it will capture whatever it has in its buffer and record the rest. Or rewind and watch the buffer.

    Flipping through channels is not smooth. Its jumpy. When you turn to an HD channel and back to a SD channel, it takes a second of two for the picture to adjust.

    It is very much like a Tivo, but not as user friendly.
     
  11. Ken Chui

    Ken Chui Supporting Actor

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    TW in central Ohio is still negotiating with the Sinclair Broadcast Group to carry HD programming for the local ABC and FOX affiliates; it's been ongoing for a few months now. FOX I don't care too much for (except "The Simpsons"); it's "Boston Legal" I'm missing out on in HD goodness.
     
  12. Jeremy_Watson

    Jeremy_Watson Stunt Coordinator

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    I was thinking about getting one of these and I had a few questions.

    1. Does anyone know where there is a manual available online? If so, I can probably answer the rest of the questions myself.
    2. Tin mentioned above that he had to record shows weekely, so does that mean there is no "Season Pass" type feature with this?
    3. Does it have any other special features similar or differnt from Tivo (e.g. recommendations based on your rankings)?

    That is all I can think of for now. Thanks.
     
  13. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    It has a Season Pass type feature, like it will record all first run/all shows of ER on a weekly bases or whenever you want it to. I think the feature is called, Series Recording or something.

    It pretty much like a Tivo, but without the advance features, like show rankings, or recommendations.

    I've gotten use to it and now use it everyday and catch up my TV on the weekends or in the evenings.

    I find myself watching less live other than live sports, like NFL, NBA and the news.
     
  14. Jeremy_Watson

    Jeremy_Watson Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks. Since I've been holding out on a PVR until I could get one with HD, I'll probably pick this up (or have them bring it over, it sounds like).
     
  15. Jeremy Deal

    Jeremy Deal Extra

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    How about CBSHD on cable, I get ABC, NBC, FOX, but no CBS which kinda sucks cause I miss the SEC game and the NFL games. Any idea on CBS HD for Time Warner, I have Brighthouse in birmingham, AL which I believe is the same thing. They have this HDDVR box but won't release it, so I have had a HD box and a DVR hooked up to the same TV for 2 months now.
     
  16. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    I had the same problem. Prior to the public release, Time Warner kept me in getting the HD DVR. I had to call again and talk to another rep to get the HD DVR.

    Since it has been released to the public, you should be able to get it by now.
     
  17. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    When Adelphia had the same policy, I watched the installer to see what was so special. The only things I noticed was:

    - The box comes up in interlace mode through the component output. Then you have to go into the setup menu to enable the HD feed, which messes up the image. Then you have to go to the TV setup menu and tell it to expect HD video on that set of inputs. Chances are, many customers freak out when the video image suddenly distorts, or they get upset when everything does not work as soon as it's plugged in.

    - The tech also needed to call a activation number with a MAC address for the box to enable it to recieve the programming guide, and a code number so the box could recieve the correct guide for my area. Then there is about a 10 minute delay while the initial guide loads. The tech takes that time to explain the remote, program it to control my television, and some of the major features of the software. My guess is that customers expect a "plug-and-play" and get upset with the setup time or the inability to program the remote. (The manual did not list codes for the remote so only the Tech had the right code.)

    These might explain the need for a service call.
     
  18. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    After a while, just like HD Box, Digital Box, DVR Box, Cable Box, they will let the customer to pickup a HD DVR Box at their Cable Store and self install.

    It seems like whenever they first deploy an new product, its hands off to the customer and let the Cable guy handle it.
     
  19. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    If you only enable 1080i in the setup menu, it changes the channels much more smoothly. You don't need to enable 480i.
     
  20. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    ***Update***

    After two months, the HD DVR (SA8000HD) needed to be replaced due to hard drive crash. The tech told me that there are two hard drives in the box and if one of them fails, you will start seeing problems, like not being able to watch the recorded shows or random reboots.

    When there is an hour glass on how many days are left on a recorded show, there is about 10% free of space.

    The tech advised me to try to clean off some of my list of recorded shows weekly.

    I'm not sure there are two actual hard drives or two different partitions on the same drive.
     

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