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7 Messages

Sunday, August 31st, 2014 7:09 PM

External DVR recording options from tuner only

Radeon 4850 HD GPU, maxed out RAM, 2 internal HDs and I just bought a 2 TB HDD as a third HD just for recording TV after they installed DTV. 

1. Would the Hauppage unit listed above at least let me make manual recordings of live TV? 

It has the ability to integrate programming guides for scheduling recordings from other providers but DTV doesn’t allow that function for 3rd party devices.

2. Although I have hooked up the composite outs (Yellow video and the stereo RCA cables) from the tuner to my PC’s composite inputs, Windows Media Center is not recognizing any TV signal input.  The same OEM card will recognize an external OTA antenna and recognized the cable input signal. 

Has anyone been able to record a composite signal from the tuner to their computer through Windows Media Center? 

Again I am not looking for high def at this point I just want to follow a few regular TV series of which most are not OTA tand don’t fit into my viewing schedule without abandoning my daughter.

There has to be some kind of solution here.  My apologies in part to DTV as my post is not intended as public criticism but rather hopefully open your eyes to service gaps for some of your customers who are not able to rent high function DVR’s from you.  All I want is a digital VHS like recording ability for my PC that all other providers to my knowledge allow for.


Any help would be greatly appreciated.


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Official Solution

peds48

Expert

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32K Messages

8 years ago

you need really to realize that neither of the MVPD are after you.  DirecTV® does NOT prevent video from going through the ethernet jack, the receiver are not built that way.  You will be the first one on these forums on my 7 seven years responding here asking for such "feature". 

DirecTV® does not include a coax output on their HD equipment because it makes more sense NOT to do that. Imagine if it costed DirecTV® $1.00 to include that one jack, DirecTV® last year installed 65+ million receivers, that would mean a 65 million dollars wasted just so a handful can take advantage of them.  Not ideal. Those that need a coax output can invest on a cheap RF modulator to accomplish the same results.

Now, back to your question.  Yes you can use the Hauappage to record from DirecTV®, but UNLESS the PVR includes a DirecTV® guide, you will have to change the channels manually or you can use the HD receiver auto-tune feature assuming you can manually program the VPR to record at certain times.

peds48

Expert

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32K Messages

8 years ago

Please Start by listing the Hauppage unit you are referring to as is not in your post

Tutor

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7 Messages

8 years ago

Sorry for some reason part of my post got cut off. I did multiple searches

on this unit and got no hits... Pasting complete original question with

model in bold print number below.

My dad just switched to DTV but didn't realize the package he ordered did

NOT include a single DVR! Although I offered to pay the additional $10 a

month I got no response (which is his way of not wanting to say no to your

face but mean no for an answer. Due to multiple scheduling issues 90% of

network series programs that I do watch have to be from a DVR recording. I

have wasted 15-20 hours of research and lost sleep trying to find ANY

solution for even just recording live broadcasts to my PC (in any

definition) while I help my daughter with homework or activities after

school.

I thought that buying a verified used OWNED DVR would allow me to do so

but DTV still wants to charge me the same $10 rental fee as a "service fee"

plus another $20 for activating a new card (I have a new card in my tuner

already). IMHO major RIP OFF! Ironically I would much rather just lease

a new DVR unit from DTV for $10 a month but due to circumstances beyond my

control (and my comprehension), leasing or adding ANY additional costs to

my dad's DTV account is NOT an option for me.

Although I really wanted to be able to program automated advanced

recordings as I could with cable, right now I would be relieved to just be

able to record a 480i analogue composite video signal to my PC through

Windows Media Center OR something like a used *HAUPPAUGE HD PVR 1212. *

A dedicated external DVR would support a higher resolution AND the Hauppage

has an IR blaster. I'm not sure if the IR blaster is useful for DTV

without the $10 per monthly service fee for a programmable recording

oprion. Do they really have to nickel and dime us to death? Heck if I

could find VHS video cassettes and a reliable player I would settle for

that right now. It should be illegal to prevent a paid subscriber from

sending a second output to a recording device of their choice to record

network TV shows UNLESS you lease a device from the satellite or cable

provider.

Back to finding at least a MANUAL recording solution;

I have 1 new DTV HD tuner for my source

PC Media Center Running Windows 7 Home Pro with;

- composite AV inputs

- plus two Ethernet jacks.

I have been told that the Ethernet won’t work for getting a DTV signal from

the tuner’s Ethernet connection either (the data transfer rate and

bandwidth would support HDTV recording IF DTV didn’t design their tuners to

prevent it….) Seriously DTV couldn’t even put a coax cable throughput jack

on the back to connect to my PC?

My PC is an older HP Media Center M7664x upgraded from XP to Win 7 Home Pro

with lots of hardware upgrades, Stealth OXC PS, Radeon 4850 HD GPU, maxed

out RAM, 2 internal HDs and I just bought a 2 TB HDD as a third HD just for

recording TV after they installed DTV.

1. Would the Hauppage unit listed above at least let me make manual

recordings of live TV?

It has the ability to integrate programming guides for scheduling

recordings from other providers but DTV doesn’t allow that function for 3rd

party devices.

2. Although I have hooked up the composite outs (Yellow video and the

stereo RCA cables) from the tuner to my PC’s composite inputs, Windows

Media Center is not recognizing any TV signal input. The same OEM card

will recognize an external OTA antenna and recognized the cable input

signal.

Has anyone been able to record a composite signal from the tuner to their

computer through Windows Media Center?

Again I am not looking for high def at this point I just want to follow a

few regular TV series of which most are not OTA tand don’t fit into my

viewing schedule without abandoning my daughter.

There has to be some kind of solution here. My apologies in part to DTV as

my post is not intended as public criticism but rather hopefully open your

eyes to service gaps for some of your customers who are not able to rent

high function DVR’s from you. All I want is a digital VHS like recording

ability for my PC that all other providers to my knowledge allow for.

On Sun, Aug 31, 2014 at 2:20 PM, peds48

Tutor

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7 Messages

8 years ago

Thank you for your answer.  The last paragraph is useful for my decision making process. 

Although I do not doubt your word in regards to this forum, I have run across much angst in multiple online forums regarding being forced to lease Direct TV's DVR's (since 2006), pay the same fee as leasing one to access the programming guide if you buy a used one or just go without from former DTV customers.  (Just search eBay for how many boxes are for sale).  My situation however is admittedly unique. As stated previously it would actually be my preference to lease a DVR (I prefer a generic term), PVR or VPR if you prefer, but I don't have that option as it is not technically my home or account and it is a temporary arrangement while remodeling a home of my own.

I think offering extended features and conveniences with a DVR from DTV is a fair trade off over a consumer buying a third party DVR and equates to the essence of fair competition.  Staying ahead of the competition on a more level playing field would actually be to DTV's business advantage in the long run although the pencil pushing accountants wouldn't be able to understand that.

Those coax jacks by the way in bulk would cost far less than 10 cents each (with labor) to have installed on each unit by economies of scale. Based on the amount of complaints I encountered during my research, DTV could raise their customer account base by 25%-50% if only they provided more flexible options for recording programs in their delivery method.  Since you have to rent a tuner box at $8 a month per room to access anything, Direct TV would stand to gain at a bare minimum $7.90 a month for each regained customer account and actually $7.90 per box added for each customer. Hopefully you can see it actually would make GREAT business sense to do so my friend if you look at the large picture.

The problem it appears starts with the in home delivery system itself used by satellite providers. With cable most of the signal is unscrambled before entering the homes cable distribution center (outside the house) leaving the subscriber many customizable options. I have known some to have both a cable DVR and a personally owned third party DVR.  There is a reason so many third party companies make these for sale and it is because there remains a demand for them. DTV uses the same pre-existing pre-installed coax cables when present to transmit the unscrambled signal.

The satellite industry has taken the route of waiting to unscramble the signal until it gets to the box. This requires an additional monthly tuner rental fee for each and every TV in the house where as with cable most households I know rent one DVR box and just use the cable out to TV's with digital receivers in the other rooms. Without another cable brand tuner there were less channels available but I could record anything I picked up without their tuner into a PC or DVR of my choice and use Windows Media Center on the PC to program recordings.

It is the choosing of a non centralized unscrambling system for a service provider in this industry that creates this scenario and requires a duplication of investment in resources for unit boxes in each room.  Surely with the increased income this generates DTV they could cough up 10 cents a box to give consumers other options.

At this point I would pay $20 a month to be rid of the headache this practice has caused me but again the only option being given me is to find a way to record shows WITHOUT adding one single cent to my father's monthly charges per his stipulations (even if I paid double the charge).  Perhaps direct billing for a "sub account" from DTV to me would be a workable solution for both parties in theory but probably too complicated to develop billing software and practices for.

peds48

Expert

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32K Messages

8 years ago

WOw, you are really way of the mark with your assumptions.  Fist, the coax jack is not only the jack, but the required components to go with it as well.  Ot would not do any good to stick a .10cent jack without being attached to anything. 

The problem it appears starts with the in home delivery system itself used by satellite providers.

That "problem" (is not a problem at all) is that satellite frequencies are outside of any TV tuner.  A TV tuner can decode from 50Mhz to 850 Mhz.  This is the frequencies used by Cable Companies as well.  Satellite frequencies start at 950Mhz and go all the way up 2150Mhz.  This is the reason why with satellite you need a satellite box any order to get any type of picture.  Connecting a satellite coax to your TV will give that TV a signal that the TV wont understand. 

With cable most of the signal is unscrambled before entering the homes cable distribution center (outside the house) leaving the subscriber many customizable options.


For the most part, this is NOT accurate.  Most Cable Companies have moved to an ALL scramble scheme since going all digital a few years ago,  perhaps the minor Cable Companies may still have a few channels unscramble but this will change.


I have known some to have both a cable DVR and a personally owned third party DVR.

The are hundreds of DVRs out there, most of them are made to record OTA, which by law is NOT scrambled.  Getting "free" cable from the Cable Company when is not scrambled, is call passive stealing

The satellite industry has taken the route of waiting to unscramble the signal until it gets to the box.


This can be frther form the truth. As I  said, it has to do with the frequencies being used

Tutor

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7 Messages

8 years ago

@I'm sure you are most likely correct on the satellite frequencies.  I never wanted satellite and never had a reason to research it. I won't debate it with you but regardless having to go through a tuner first in each room the way it is designed but if they wanted to satellite companies could develop a central hub to process unscrambled media at frequencies TV's could receive.  Regardless of why it is not done it IS still the root of my problem.

Yes I am quite aware that a coax output requires hardware...never implied it didn't.  However that hardware isn't any more expensive the the hardware putting out the composite and component outputs on the back of satellite tuners....

Your telling me I am supposed to believe they don't balk at paying for the hardware behind several output mediums but suddenly have an issue with paying for the coax hardware and a jack?  Heck they have to put in a DA converter for the non digital outputs and would not have to do so with a coax out.  The DA converter would be most expensive hardware component for the non HDMI outputs.  I have call major BS on that.  Either been mislead, drank the Kool-Aid or are selling the Kool-Aid to say otherwise.  Economies of scale my friend, economies of scale.

BTW I know how to strip coax, attach/replace the jacks, solder electrical cable and electrical components, check continuity, resistance and measure power output.  I have even replaced a broken coax jack on a circuit board so don't tell me about the hardware involved.

The price I had quoted when purchased and installed for the "millions" of units you cited would cover the hardware, the jack and the added robot "labor" on an assembly line to install it. One whole dollar would cover that easily in a modern assembly line with parts purchased in that quantity. Heck it would cover a complimentary 6 ft coax cable to boot for sending the output to my PC.

Granted I would be dependent on one of many available Media Center plug ins to schedule recordings and select channels and would not have access to some features I don't care about. It could be done if DTV was willing and as stated DTV would increase market share by tapping into all the Media Center users out there.

Check out The Green Button for a vibrant community of Windows Media Center users. There is even a dedicated cable section...hmmmm sounds like plenty of people have no problem integrating Media Center PC's with cable without tuner boxes in between the inputs from my reading.

We pay to watch the unscrambled channels and the only useful output to me other than the HDMI primary one would be a coax....you can keep your component and composite video outs along with the hardware attached to them. While I understand recording movies on commercial free stations like HBO is illegal, recording commercial TV series off of TNT or the Syfy channel etc for my own personal viewing has been legal since the days of VCR's and it still is. So why not allow me to do so conveniently with either a DTV DVR OR one I personally own since DTV doesn't want to sell them anymore?  We both know why as well as anyone reading this.  It could be done for $1 a box (yes hardware, wiring, "labor", R&D and the extra ink involved for additions to the owners manual and schematic drawings all included).

You are VERY incorrect on the unscrambed cable issue however.  Cox Communication is the only major cable provider in the Mid West and is number 5 in the US according to subscriber size. (  Cable television in the United States - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Cox Communications has always and still do provide unscrambled signals post cable box for channels 1-65, plus  700-760 something according to your paid subscription package that you can view in each and every room WITHOUT A BOX!  You can't possibly tell me Windows Media Center PC software and hardware is financially marketable if you can only record OTA with them.  Media center PC's have coax inputs (and guess what? the hardware for them too).

I know all of this because we currently have four TV's and had only ONE cable box with a DVR.  We got all the channels listed above on all three non tuner box TV's while the TV with the DVR added 40-50 channels perhaps (on our package), plus things we never used like pay per view and HBO type premium channels.

I had the same capability in Wichita Falls, Texas as well as in Edmond, Oklahoma, Oklahoma City and Tulsa, Oklahoma among other places. There were several years where I had only a Cox Tuner and used my Media Center PC exclusively for recording television.

Not once before in all my digital life have I not been able to get unscrambled paid cable without a cable tuner although with a more limited selection of paid channels to view.

Tutor

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7 Messages

8 years ago

I received a content "rejection" notification from the moderators asking me to edit my response.  While I do not see anything inappropriate or in violation of the guidelines my rejection notification gives me NO indication to what they believe needs to be changed...no highlights, no reference to a guidelines infraction and lastly NO moderator CONTACT info to help me resolve this.

I put way too much effort into researching and documenting information to not be allowed to respond.  Would a moderator please review my rejected response with some indication on what needs to be changed and what guideline it violated so I can successfully edit my response in the form of one you are willing to accept?

I understand the need for moderators and appreciate the work they do to prevent flame wars etc but rejecting a post with a request for an edit without identifying specific changes needed in some way is not helpful.  Please quote or highlight sections that are in violation of any specific guidelines and provide a link to that particular guideline so that I may make the requested changes to your satisfaction.  I just spent 30 minutes trying to find a way to contact moderators involved in rejecting my post OR any moderator anywhere for that matter for guidance without any luck so please forgive my public appeal for help reaching out to a or some moderators who can advise me.

Thank you

Tutor

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7 Messages

8 years ago

Peds48

I attempted to PM you to express my thanks for the time you took in attempting to answer my question but I can find no option to add you to my friends list and therefore could not send a thank you note.  Unfortunately our conversation seemed to me to have taken a near adversarial tone at some point which was not ever my intention.  Perhaps you felt some of my frustration with current circumstances were directed at you but I assure you they were not.

FWIW the rest of my attempted PM is pasted below but would have preferred to have contacted you directly in this matter.

Contrary to how it may have appeared I sincerely want DTV to be more successful and increase their market share.  I am frustrated at some of the limitations forced upon me by decision makers outside of my control but if I am critical from a consumers standpoint of a limitation I am experiencing it is an opportunity for DTV to improve their services. 


If DTV and satellite TV  made this one single change to allow compatibility with PC media centers or other privately owned DVRs, I personally believe satellite TV would carve away large enough portions of cable providers to outnumber cable customers in a few years. DTV may lose some DVR leasing income in the short term but the simplicity and added features of a DTV leased DVR would win many new customers over who may employ both options.  I am fully convinced it makes financial sense for DTV to make this happen and would not expect DTV to make changes that undercut their profit margin in the long term.

A significant increase in market share alone would more than make up for decreased leased DVR income especially with your claims that there is no real way around needing a leased tuner for each TV. I may be very critical of DTV's business strategies but I am actually very much for DTV becoming more successful and more profitable through better customer service.  Since this is a customer service based industry that should account for something.

shannon01

Professor

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2.8K Messages

8 years ago

Doubt DTV will bring coax connections back since there are no new TVs that use them for input.

peds48

Expert

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32K Messages

8 years ago

Doubt DTV will bring coax connections back since there are no new TVs that use them for input


and THAT is how the cookie crumbles.....  Spot on!

peds48

Expert

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32K Messages

8 years ago

Wow, you really wasted lots of space.  Folks like yourself are in the very minority and as such as treated like such.  Get over the fact that coax is not needed any longer and is up to you to work around this issue when you are using obsolete technology


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