Dtvpal-First Thoughts

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DAV

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Jul 1, 2008, 7:27:27 PM7/1/08
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Just got my Dtvpal, then a big thunder storm was comming through.
ok, Looks like a good time to set her up, since I had error 015 on my
811, unable to receive locals when satellite is out.
Setup was a breeze, hooked up my local off air feed from the VCR
to the DTVPal, ran the RF out to the VCR RF in, also also feed the
Audio and Video to the fifth input on the front onf my Hitachi TV, and
turned it on.
I skipped ant point since my antenna was downstairs, until I could
get back up on the roof to remount it. Just the same, it scanned all
available DTV just fine. It has Better sensitivity than the 811 DTV
tuner. The channels came in while if the 811 were to tune the channels
it would be bouncing with signal levels all over the place.
Only one small problem, When the DTVPal remote was set to power
the DTVPal on/off the 811 receiver also powered on/off/ When JUST
using the Satellite remote, only the 811 went on/off. Dishnetwork had
me change the 811 remote to another channel, but same responce. They
futher said, aftwer hold, it was a feature of the DTVPal to turn on/
off both DTVPal and 811 Receiver.
I general It is a great converter able to pull signals of of my
basement antenna. I can now view off-air when the satellite signal
bites the dust.

Bill R

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Jul 1, 2008, 10:04:16 PM7/1/08
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I received my DTVPal today too. I plan on using it for the front end
(tuner) for my DVD/DVR recorder (with a hard drive). As DAV said, setup
is a breeze. I hooked it up to my home's (outside) TV antenna and it
picked up all my areas digital channels and subchannels with very good
signal strength. I set up four timers earlier in the day and this
evening I was looking at the recorded programs and they all look very
good with no glitches or dropouts. From my testing, so far, it looks
like the DTVPal is a very nice digital converter. The 7 day EPG is very
nice but none of my local stations put out more than 24 hours of guide
data right now. Hopefully, that will change soon.

My DTVPal is in a different room than my DISH receiver but I did check
the DTVPal remote to see if it turns on my 722. It doesn't and the
reason it does not is because my 722 is set to another remote address
(not 1, which the DTVPal uses and is not changeable).

DAV,

I would try again to change your 811 remote address because you should
be able to fix it so that the two devices are not controlled by both
remotes. As I said, the DTVPal only responds to remote (IR) address 1.
--
Bill R.

Remove nospam_ and x in e-mail address to reply by e-mail

GordonD

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Jul 2, 2008, 12:08:19 AM7/2/08
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Thank you for pointing out that the DTVPal only responds to remote (IR)
address 1. I just ordered a DTVPal yesterday and was beginning to worry about
a power on/off conflict with my Dish receivers.


In article <486ae221$0$2723$d94e...@news.iglou.com>, Bill R

Bill Henley

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Jul 2, 2008, 2:21:14 AM7/2/08
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Bill R wrote:
> I set up four timers earlier in the day and this
> evening I was looking at the recorded programs and they all look very
> good with no glitches or dropouts. From my testing, so far, it looks
> like the DTVPal is a very nice digital converter. The 7 day EPG is very
> nice but none of my local stations put out more than 24 hours of guide
> data right now. Hopefully, that will change soon.

I have one Spanish channel that goes out 7 days, but most are less than
24 hours, some 2-3 days.

I was surprised that at least for me, an Event triggering with Pass-Thru
enabled doesn't produce any video. RCA got the audio of the channel for
the Event, but no RCA video and coax remained pass-thru. Nothing
happened when "Off". I expected DTVPal to behave like a DISH receiver I
guess. Pass-Through enabled shouldn't kill the RCA audio/video, just
the coax.

--

Bill Henley

DAV

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Jul 2, 2008, 8:39:11 AM7/2/08
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> Remove nospam_ and x in e-mail address to reply by e-mail- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -

using both channel 2 and 9 on the dish receiver remote , the dtvpal
remote still switched both units on/off, while the satellite remote
only switched the 811 receiver on/off!. Dish Tech support said the
dtvpal remote auto senses the satalitte remotes channel??
Dennis

Bill R

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Jul 2, 2008, 9:49:57 AM7/2/08
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Bill Henley wrote:


That design "strangeness" surprised me too. There are several other
"strange" (different than DISH satellite receivers) that I found too.
Nothing big, just different.

Overall, the DTVPal menus and EPG are very much like the DISH ViP
receivers and the box works very well. I was slightly surprised with
only 5 timers but for most people that are using the box as a front end
for a DVD or VCR (does anyone still use a VCR?) 5 timers will be enough.
As I mentioned in the other post, mine is hooked up to a DVD recorder
and that is hooked up to an older Sony 24" TV. Adding the DTVPal will
extend the life of those two items for a few more years so the $60 price
(before government coupon) was well worth it for me.

Bill Henley

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Jul 2, 2008, 10:00:00 AM7/2/08
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DAV wrote:
> using both channel 2 and 9 on the dish receiver remote , the dtvpal
> remote still switched both units on/off, while the satellite remote
> only switched the 811 receiver on/off!. Dish Tech support said the
> dtvpal remote auto senses the satalitte remotes channel??
> Dennis

Tech support is blowing smoke about the DTVPal remote sensing diddly.
I've never had an 811, but I thought it was UHF Pro, not IR. Maybe
that's only the remote that it shipped with? Anyhow, if your receiver's
remote has 8.0 on the back, the remote doesn't generate IR signals when
in Sat mode, only UHF Pro. That's part of the explaination for why it
doesn't control the DTVPal at all. I thought the 811 even had some menu
choice to make the receiver send remote IR codes for a learning remote
because the included remote wouldn't generate them. But I think the 811
receiver accepts IR so that it can also be controlled by an IR only
universal remote.

Now for the really weird and hard to explain part - address zero. Most
older receivers will respond to IR from their assigned address, plus IR
from a remote sending "address zero" codes. For the DTVPal, DISH used
the "1.5 IR Dedicated"
<http://tech.dishnetwork.com/departmental_content/TechPortal/content/tech/remotes/1.5_dedi.shtml>
that was used for a 1000 or 111 receiver. It generates address zero
code. The DTVPal responds to either address zero or address 1. I think
your 811 responds to its IR address or address zero.

The DTVPal remote power button will turn on/off my 508 receiver (address
7), but has no effect on a 942/622/722 (even if it is address 1) so they
must have removed "or address zero" from those units.

--

Bill Henley

Bill R

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Jul 2, 2008, 10:02:27 AM7/2/08
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DAV wrote:
>>
>>DAV,
>>
>>I would try again to change your 811 remote address because you should
>>be able to fix it so that the two devices are not controlled by both
>>remotes. As I said, the DTVPal only responds to remote (IR) address 1.
>>--
>>Bill R.
>>
>>Remove nospam_ and x in e-mail address to reply by e-mail- Hide quoted text -
>>
>>- Show quoted text -
>
>
> using both channel 2 and 9 on the dish receiver remote , the dtvpal
> remote still switched both units on/off, while the satellite remote
> only switched the 811 receiver on/off!. Dish Tech support said the
> dtvpal remote auto senses the satalitte remotes channel??
> Dennis

Dennis,

I checked again this morning and the address that I am using is IR
address 15 on my DISH receiver. I again checked the DTVPal with the
DISH satellite receiver IR remote (the green one) and it does not turn
it on. Try a higher address and see if that works.

Hasn't DISH called you to replace your 811 yet? After Aug. 1st it will
not be able to get any HD channels because all HD channels are going to
MPEG-4 on Aug. 1st.

Bill Henley

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Jul 2, 2008, 10:05:31 AM7/2/08
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Bill R wrote:
> Overall, the DTVPal menus and EPG are very much like the DISH ViP
> receivers and the box works very well. I was slightly surprised with
> only 5 timers but for most people that are using the box as a front end
> for a DVD or VCR (does anyone still use a VCR?) 5 timers will be enough.

In the DTVPal thread on AVSForums, there seem to be quite a few people
that still use a VCR, and want the DTVPal because it is the only CECB
with Event timers. It has been so long since I recorded something with
a VCR I even asked them about the need to get something "soon" w/o
thinking about it.

--

Bill Henley

The Ghost of General Lee

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Jul 2, 2008, 1:42:35 PM7/2/08
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On Wed, 02 Jul 2008 09:49:57 -0400, Bill R <nospam_...@iglou.com>
wrote:

>(does anyone still use a VCR?)

Yes.

stealth user

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Jul 2, 2008, 4:14:45 PM7/2/08
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Can you use the ATSC decoder on the Dtvpal with an HD tv (to receive OTA
digital in digital format? Or does it just convert and pass analog
signal? The website states that it has an analog pass through, and NTSC
output and RCA composite output. I have a tv that is HD with no ATSC tuner.

Bill Henley

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Jul 2, 2008, 4:27:09 PM7/2/08
to

You would be able to watch the OTA Digital channels on the HD TV, but it
certainly won't be HD, and it won't be a digital connection to the TV!
All the Digital channels come out 480i on either channel 3 or 4 NTSC, or
RCA composite cables. If your HD TV only has Component, DVI, and HDMI
connections, it wouldn't work. Even without an NTSC tuner to get 3 / 4
via coax, you should have Red-White-Yellow and that would work.

Pass-Through is something else entirely - when you don't want the ATSC
digital channels appearing as Channel 4 (or 3) NTSC and want the antenna
signal passed straight through to the TV, a VCR, on COAX cable ... so
that other devices could get the raw antenna input (USUALLY for NTSC
analog signals). But the RCA connections don't work when Pass-Through
is enabled, nor do Event Timers.

--

Bill Henley

Brad

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Jul 2, 2008, 5:21:57 PM7/2/08
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I just got my Dtvpal today, I must stay im not impressed with the
picture quality with it hooked to my 50" Sony SXRD via composite video.
Colors are soft and picture is grainy. Im also not happy with the aspect
control features on the Dtvpal. However the on screen graphics and
features are by far the best I have seen in converter box, as is the
remote control.

I had purchased the Zenith converter box and a Winegard HD -RC 1010 box
for a customer for his Sony and Mitsubishi Large Screen TV's, neither
one of them has a digital tuner. The cheap Zenith box blew the Winegard
HD box out of the water. The colors were rich and deep on the Zenith and
the Zenith was nearly identical or better in picture quality on HD
channels compared to the Winegard HD box, remember these tv sets were
about 5 years old, so quality of the picture wasn't going to be the same
as today's TVs. I ended up sending the Winegard box back and getting a
second Zenith for them. Im going to use my 2nd gov. coupon to order a
Zenith for myself too.

Brad,
Dish installer
Vip622 owner

Bill R

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Jul 2, 2008, 7:24:30 PM7/2/08
to

If the OP wants a box with HD output he should not consider one of the
current DTV converter boxes. NONE of them are allowed to have an HD
output in order to qualify for the $40 coupon.

DISH is coming out with an ASTC HD DVR, the TR-50. Pricing and
availability have not been released but rumors are that it will be
available this fall. There are several other vendors that have ATSC
tuner boxes (with HD output on HDMI and component outputs). They are
generally in the $100 - $200 price range and, of course (since they
output HD) they are not eligible for the government $40 coupon.

T. Keating

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Jul 3, 2008, 9:00:36 PM7/3/08
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I received by DTVpal yesterday..

DTVpal ships with a remote identical to that shipped with the old 2800
receiver. (I have 2800, 3900 and they pick up every DTVpal remote
commands.)

Every button decodes identically to the 2800's remote.
I.E. Buttons @ all locations have identical functions.

Bill R

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Jul 4, 2008, 9:05:22 AM7/4/08
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T. Keating wrote:
>
> I received by DTVpal yesterday..
>
> DTVpal ships with a remote identical to that shipped with the old 2800
> receiver. (I have 2800, 3900 and they pick up every DTVpal remote
> commands.)
>
> Every button decodes identically to the 2800's remote.
> I.E. Buttons @ all locations have identical functions.
>

I guess the DTVPal designers assumed that the box would not be used on
the same TV as a DISH satellite receiver. I think that was a mistake as
people ARE adding it to the same TVs that their satellite receiver is on
(to get the additional OTA digital channels). For us with newer
receivers it is not a problem but as noted here and on AVS Forum people
are having remote control conflicts with older receivers. Something to
consider if you are thinking of buying a DTVPal and already have a DISH
receiver.

GordonD

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Jul 4, 2008, 10:44:48 AM7/4/08
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In my opinion a poor design choice.

I just received my DTVPal yesterday and installed it in my system which
includes a Dish DP301 receiver. The remote conflict is unavoidable, no matter
what remote address I choose, the DTVPal responds. Imagine trying to operate
the DTVPal and at the same time your Dish receiver also responds to the button
presses. Whoever designed this must be a complete idiot.

To add insult to injury, in the Normal screen setting a 1/4 inch bar runs all
the way across the top of the television picture. The bar is black and white
and the blocks randomly and quickly change position size and shape. This
happens on almost all channels.

The only thing the DTVPal has going for it is the Guide and Timers. Everything
else including the picture is poor.

This DTVPal is going back!

GorodnD

In article <486e2012$0$2692$d94e...@news.iglou.com>, Bill R

Brad

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Jul 4, 2008, 11:02:57 AM7/4/08
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GordonD wrote:
> In my opinion a poor design choice.
>
> I just received my DTVPal yesterday and installed it in my system which
> includes a Dish DP301 receiver. The remote conflict is unavoidable, no matter
> what remote address I choose, the DTVPal responds. Imagine trying to operate
> the DTVPal and at the same time your Dish receiver also responds to the button
> presses. Whoever designed this must be a complete idiot.
>
> To add insult to injury, in the Normal screen setting a 1/4 inch bar runs all
> the way across the top of the television picture. The bar is black and white
> and the blocks randomly and quickly change position size and shape. This
> happens on almost all channels.
>
> The only thing the DTVPal has going for it is the Guide and Timers. Everything
> else including the picture is poor.
>
> This DTVPal is going back!
>
> GorodnD
>

Yes, I was able to set the aspect ratio on X.1 channels to full to
eliminate the bar at the top of the screen. But all the sub channels on
mine were set to Stretch and I could not change them, when viewing on a
widescreen tv I prefer the original 4:3 format.

Picture quality on a widescreen is very bad, but ok on my old 19" tube
tv....

Brad

Bill R

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Jul 4, 2008, 12:09:52 PM7/4/08
to
Brad wrote:
>
> Picture quality on a widescreen is very bad, but ok on my old 19" tube
> tv....
>
> Brad
>

Yes. And that is true for every coupon eligible DTV converter box that
I have tried. You have to remember why these boxes are being made. It
is to extend the life of older TVs that don't have digital tuners. If
you have one of those (newer) TVs that came out before digital tuners
were required (before 2006) you should buy a converter box that has HD
outputs. NONE of the coupon eligible boxes do.

The Ghost of General Lee

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Jul 4, 2008, 12:41:03 PM7/4/08
to
On Fri, 04 Jul 2008 09:05:22 -0400, Bill R <nospam_...@iglou.com>
wrote:

>T. Keating wrote:

Thanks for the heads up. I'll be grabbing a couple of Zenith boxes
over the weekend.

Dennis A. Vitali

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Jul 4, 2008, 12:55:01 PM7/4/08
to
Thanks for the explnation, I'll try reote address 15, as stated in the post
the 811 may automatically respond to address "0". It's not really a big
problem since I'll only use the DTVPal on when I lose Satellite signals from
the 811 and also lose ota and satellite locals.
The reason I did not upgrade yet is that the 811 promo when I got the
unit allowed me to cancel the HD after a year, since they really was nothing
on worth the extra $10 /month thats what I did. No HD Enhancement fee
either. I feel that if I did upgrade to the VIP series then I would pay an
enhancement fee with no HD. I guess the reason of no enhancement fee for the
811 is its old technology. I wonder if any one else pays an HD enhancement
fee for service with the 811??
Dennis


Brad

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Jul 4, 2008, 1:03:24 PM7/4/08
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Bill R wrote:

> Brad wrote:
>
>>
>> Picture quality on a widescreen is very bad, but ok on my old 19" tube
>> tv....
>>
>> Brad
>>
>
> Yes. And that is true for every coupon eligible DTV converter box that
> I have tried. You have to remember why these boxes are being made. It
> is to extend the life of older TVs that don't have digital tuners. If
> you have one of those (newer) TVs that came out before digital tuners
> were required (before 2006) you should buy a converter box that has HD
> outputs. NONE of the coupon eligible boxes do.

The Zenith Box does very well on HD tvs, and HD channels. Colors are
deep can rich and down conversion to 480i on the HD channels is the best
I have seen.


GordonD

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Jul 4, 2008, 2:03:03 PM7/4/08
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I was just about to say the same thing but you beat me to it.

The Zenith boxes do have a good picture. So far I've tried the Zenith,
Magnavox and now DTVPal. I'd rate the Zenith picture an 8 and the other two
a 5.

I thought I got a bad unit but after Brad identified the same flashing bar
problem with his, it seems to be more widespread.

GordonD

No Mail

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Jul 8, 2008, 8:07:22 AM7/8/08
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I went through all 19 remote codes with my Dish receiver remote. The
DtvPal accepts only remote code 1 and code 0 as noted here.

I set my universal remote to code 1. This was verified with the
receiver. The receiver was then set to code 2. There are no conflicts
between the two since the DtvPal accepts code 1.

The DtvPal remote is set to code 0, causing the conflict. It should have
been set to code 1, then there would be no conflict.

Seems to be more of a manufacturing error in China rather than a design
error.
Dish Network should replace the DtvPal remote with one set to code 1.

GordonD

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Jul 8, 2008, 12:58:48 PM7/8/08
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Thank you so much for pointing out the remote code information. Using your
info, I setup an old Dish remote to code 1 for the DTVPal and changed the
remote code to 8 for my DP301 Receiver and its remote. I no longer have a
conflict.

Dish setting the DTVPal remote to code 0 was a big blunder! Maybe you're
right it was a "manufacturing error". I also agree Dish should replace all
the DTVPal remotes.

Another solution for folks that don't have a spare Dish remote is to set
the Sat receiver and remote code to (say) 8 then temporarily change the
remote code to 1 when they want to operate the DTVPal. A few button pushes
and you only need on remote.

Bill Henley

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Jul 8, 2008, 5:50:34 PM7/8/08
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GordonD wrote:
>
> On Tue, 8 Jul 2008 05:07:22 -0700, No Mail wrote:
>
> > Seems to be more of a manufacturing error in China rather than a design
> > error.
> > Dish Network should replace the DtvPal remote with one set to code 1.
>

> Dish setting the DTVPal remote to code 0 was a big blunder! Maybe you're
> right it was a "manufacturing error". I also agree Dish should replace all
> the DTVPal remotes.
>
> Another solution for folks that don't have a spare Dish remote is to set
> the Sat receiver and remote code to (say) 8 then temporarily change the
> remote code to 1 when they want to operate the DTVPal. A few button pushes
> and you only need on remote.

DISH didn't design a new remote for the DTVPal, just put new silkscreen
labels on the buttons of an existing 1.5 Dedicated remote. That remote
was also used in the 2800 receiver.

A good part of the target market for DTVPal are people that don't have
DISH receivers where the existing remote works fine and doesn't cause
conflicts. The DTVPal remote also doesn't conflict if the DISH receiver
supports HD, so not everybody with a DTVPal will need a new remote.
Some won't even need firmware updates to fix the existing problems.

A single DISH remote to operate both a receiver and the DTVPal would be
(IR) 5.2 or 5.3 or (IR/UHF Pro) 6.2 or 6.3. Those remotes can control
the Sat receiver at some address above 1, and configure Aux mode to
control the DTVPal on address 1.

--

Bill Henley

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