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Posted Dec 31, 2013
1:13:15 PM
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DVR Pixelation and freezing during playback

Frequently when I record a program (no weather involved) I get freezing and pixelation when I play it back. Sometimes its intermittent and sometimes the entire show is unusable.  I have never had this problem watching live TV, even the same programs.  This past Sunday I recorded a football game and as soon as it started to record I started to watch the recording instead of the live program.  As soon as I started to get  pixelation I switched over to live TV and the picture was fine. I repeated this several times with the same results.

I talked to Direct TV and they had me perform a signal strength test which was OK.  They wanted to send out a repair person to check it out but if I can watch a program just fine but the same program recorded is all garbled  to me it can only mean that the DVR box is bad.

Frequently when I record a program (no weather involved) I get freezing and pixelation when I play it back. Sometimes its intermittent and sometimes the entire show is unusable.  I have never had this problem watching live TV, even the same programs.  This past Sunday I recorded a football game and as soon as it started to record I started to watch the recording instead of the live program.  As soon as I started to get  pixelation I switched over to live TV and the picture was fine. I repeated this several times with the same results.

I talked to Direct TV and they had me perform a signal strength test which was OK.  They wanted to send out a repair person to check it out but if I can watch a program just fine but the same program recorded is all garbled  to me it can only mean that the DVR box is bad.

DVR Pixelation and freezing during playback

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Dec 31, 2013 1:53:06 PM
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ACE - Expert

What model DVR do have ?

Run the Built in Self-test (BIST) to try and repair your hard drive. To run the hard drive checks, please follow these steps:

* Reboot DVR via red button inside card door.

* When you see "Running receiver self-check" press select

* You will see "Entering Diagnostics Mode..."

* Select Advanced Tests Menu -> Hard Drive utilities -> Short Smart test

You can also run the file test, and the DVR can sometimes repair a bad file report.

* If the other tests pass, run the surface test.   Warning: This process could take several hours to complete. You may want to run it overnight.

The good news is that every attempt is made to save programming. This is less destructive than a reformat all and could provide you with a more stable system if you are having problems that appear to be related to the hard drive. 

What model DVR do have ?

Run the Built in Self-test (BIST) to try and repair your hard drive. To run the hard drive checks, please follow these steps:

* Reboot DVR via red button inside card door.

* When you see "Running receiver self-check" press select

* You will see "Entering Diagnostics Mode..."

* Select Advanced Tests Menu -> Hard Drive utilities -> Short Smart test

You can also run the file test, and the DVR can sometimes repair a bad file report.

* If the other tests pass, run the surface test.   Warning: This process could take several hours to complete. You may want to run it overnight.

The good news is that every attempt is made to save programming. This is less destructive than a reformat all and could provide you with a more stable system if you are having problems that appear to be related to the hard drive. 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Jan 1, 2014 9:19:53 AM
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I have an HD DVY, the one that allows recording of five programs at once.  It is about one year old.

I have an HD DVY, the one that allows recording of five programs at once.  It is about one year old.

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Jan 1, 2014 9:20:58 AM
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ACE - Expert

So you have a Genie DVR?  It's either an HR34 or HR44.   Have you tried the disk diagnostics?

So you have a Genie DVR?  It's either an HR34 or HR44.   Have you tried the disk diagnostics?

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Jan 2, 2014 6:34:14 AM
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Have not done the disk yet, will try and do it today

Have not done the disk yet, will try and do it today

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Jan 2, 2014 7:44:53 AM
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Hi!

I Seem to have the same thing going on. I too have a Genie, and the freezing thing ONLY happens during the playback of NBC channel 5 in DFW area. Not all the time, but only on NBC ? I can SOMETIMES motor thru by advancing or reversing. Reboot no help. WEIRD,

Ray

Hi!

I Seem to have the same thing going on. I too have a Genie, and the freezing thing ONLY happens during the playback of NBC channel 5 in DFW area. Not all the time, but only on NBC ? I can SOMETIMES motor thru by advancing or reversing. Reboot no help. WEIRD,

Ray

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Jan 2, 2014 7:54:53 AM
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I have had the same problem in Seattle, except it also occurred on the local Fox station.  The recorded programs were unviewable. Direct TV acted like they didn't know what it was and suggested I keep an eye on it and make notes if it happens again. I do not know it is happening unless I watch the recording.

I have had the same problem in Seattle, except it also occurred on the local Fox station.  The recorded programs were unviewable. Direct TV acted like they didn't know what it was and suggested I keep an eye on it and make notes if it happens again. I do not know it is happening unless I watch the recording.

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Jan 2, 2014 7:55:14 AM
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OK, I ran the tests, both the hard drive and file test produced a bar that said passed.  I'm not sure what that is telling me or what to do next?

Thanks for the ongoing help!

OK, I ran the tests, both the hard drive and file test produced a bar that said passed.  I'm not sure what that is telling me or what to do next?

Thanks for the ongoing help!

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Jan 2, 2014 9:16:36 AM
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ACE - Expert

weflood,

It's probably best to let them send a service tech, especially if you can easily demonstrate and reproduce the problem.  The tech can replace your DVR, or perhaps fix some other problem.  Let us know what the tech finds.

weflood,

It's probably best to let them send a service tech, especially if you can easily demonstrate and reproduce the problem.  The tech can replace your DVR, or perhaps fix some other problem.  Let us know what the tech finds.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Jan 2, 2014 9:17:31 AM
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ACE - Expert

If it's just happening with your NBC station, then it's a known issue affecting a small percentage of HR34 Genie DVRs.  Replacing the HR34 with an HR44 is the only currently known solution. Call DirecTV.

If it's just happening with your NBC station, then it's a known issue affecting a small percentage of HR34 Genie DVRs.  Replacing the HR34 with an HR44 is the only currently known solution. Call DirecTV.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Jan 2, 2014 9:22:14 AM
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Its not possible to demonstrate the problem because you never know when it will strike.  It does not do it all the time.

Its not possible to demonstrate the problem because you never know when it will strike.  It does not do it all the time.

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Jan 2, 2014 9:34:02 AM
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ACE - Expert

Did you keep that football recording that freezes at the same spot each time?  That would be good evidence for the service tech.

Did you keep that football recording that freezes at the same spot each time?  That would be good evidence for the service tech.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Jan 2, 2014 10:27:28 AM
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I had the same problem. I have a Genie DVR, HR34. It only pixelizes on recorded programs on NBC in Sacramento. This problem has been ongoing for at least 6 months and I don't think Directv will ever fixed this. Some people have suggested it is the signal feed from NBC; others have suggested it is hardware, the DVR. If its the DVR, why is it only happening on NBC for me and others??? If it's the signal feed, it should occur on both "live" and "recorded" programs at the same time. Has anybody, who switched from HR34 to HR44, solved this problem of pixelation? If so, then I'm convinced it's the DVR.

I had the same problem. I have a Genie DVR, HR34. It only pixelizes on recorded programs on NBC in Sacramento. This problem has been ongoing for at least 6 months and I don't think Directv will ever fixed this. Some people have suggested it is the signal feed from NBC; others have suggested it is hardware, the DVR. If its the DVR, why is it only happening on NBC for me and others??? If it's the signal feed, it should occur on both "live" and "recorded" programs at the same time. Has anybody, who switched from HR34 to HR44, solved this problem of pixelation? If so, then I'm convinced it's the DVR.

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Jan 2, 2014 11:20:05 AM
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ACE - Expert

Yes, changing to an HR44 has solved this problem for folks with the "NBC Pixelation on HR34" issue.

Yes, changing to an HR44 has solved this problem for folks with the "NBC Pixelation on HR34" issue.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Jan 2, 2014 12:24:38 PM
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Teacher

Thank you for your response. I'd like to hear more responses from others who have switched from HR34 to HR44 to see if it actually fixed this NBC pixelation issue.

Thank you for your response. I'd like to hear more responses from others who have switched from HR34 to HR44 to see if it actually fixed this NBC pixelation issue.

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Jan 3, 2014 8:26:40 PM
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Teacher

I have the same exact problem and started a post back in November, you can probably find it via my user name I don't know a quick way to post a link of it.  The folks on here were quite helpful and helped me run all the diagnostics but nothing helped.  I convinced the Directv CSR to mail me a replacement HR34 (which cost me $19.95) and the problem returned within days and continues today.  It happens on multiple channels (ABC, NBC, FOX, ESPN, TBS and others) and is starting to really piss me off.  The one work around that I have been trying to use is that when I setup a show I really care about I start another recording before it so the first tuner is busy when the show I care about begins recording.  This is a pain but my experience with Windows PC TV tuners makes me suspect the primary tuner used in the Genie.  I did some tests where I started recording 5 shows manually and then stopped them after a few minutes and found that it was always the first show I started recording that was screwed up Making me suspect the primary tuner.  I could be way off here. 


Anyway a replacement HR34 is no guarantee that your problem will be solved-it didn't fix my issues. This sure seems to be affecting quite a few folks.

I have the same exact problem and started a post back in November, you can probably find it via my user name I don't know a quick way to post a link of it.  The folks on here were quite helpful and helped me run all the diagnostics but nothing helped.  I convinced the Directv CSR to mail me a replacement HR34 (which cost me $19.95) and the problem returned within days and continues today.  It happens on multiple channels (ABC, NBC, FOX, ESPN, TBS and others) and is starting to really piss me off.  The one work around that I have been trying to use is that when I setup a show I really care about I start another recording before it so the first tuner is busy when the show I care about begins recording.  This is a pain but my experience with Windows PC TV tuners makes me suspect the primary tuner used in the Genie.  I did some tests where I started recording 5 shows manually and then stopped them after a few minutes and found that it was always the first show I started recording that was screwed up Making me suspect the primary tuner.  I could be way off here. 


Anyway a replacement HR34 is no guarantee that your problem will be solved-it didn't fix my issues. This sure seems to be affecting quite a few folks.

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Jan 4, 2014 3:08:23 AM
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Since I posted this, people from all over the country have reported the same problem on many different stations.  Seems Direct TV has a problem that they either cannot or will not fix or in fact own up to the fact that they have a problem.  As soon as Comcast in my area has the DVR available that will record five programs I plan to go with them.

Since I posted this, people from all over the country have reported the same problem on many different stations.  Seems Direct TV has a problem that they either cannot or will not fix or in fact own up to the fact that they have a problem.  As soon as Comcast in my area has the DVR available that will record five programs I plan to go with them.

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Jan 4, 2014 9:22:55 AM
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ACE - Expert

It may appear that way, weflood, but remember that folks generally only post in forums when they have a problem.  Those of us who hang out here a lot can recognize when a problem is truly "widespread".  This one is not truly widespread.  99% of these "freezing" problems are caused by broadcast station issues (especially a few NBC stations affecting HR34 Genie DVRs), or defective hard drives.   If you feel that Comcast equipment will behave better for you, then go for it.   Keep us posted on what you decide. 

It may appear that way, weflood, but remember that folks generally only post in forums when they have a problem.  Those of us who hang out here a lot can recognize when a problem is truly "widespread".  This one is not truly widespread.  99% of these "freezing" problems are caused by broadcast station issues (especially a few NBC stations affecting HR34 Genie DVRs), or defective hard drives.   If you feel that Comcast equipment will behave better for you, then go for it.   Keep us posted on what you decide. 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Jan 4, 2014 11:56:33 AM
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Teacher

I have tried that a few  times per CSR instructions and the signal strength test on the transponders and the values are what they're supposed to be and still the problem exists for me. I'll be surprise if Directv can solved this problem. I'm just waiting for the right time to switch to DISH and before I do that I'll do some digging if DISH also had the same problem.

I have tried that a few  times per CSR instructions and the signal strength test on the transponders and the values are what they're supposed to be and still the problem exists for me. I'll be surprise if Directv can solved this problem. I'm just waiting for the right time to switch to DISH and before I do that I'll do some digging if DISH also had the same problem.

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Jan 4, 2014 2:40:15 PM
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Litzdog 911 is a long time poster to these forums and under the former forum software was labeled a TechKnow Guide.  Under this new software, they gave us gold stars.  You can rely on his statement that the HR44 is the only known correction for the NBC HR34 problem.  Getting a different HR34 will likely exhibit the same issue.

Litzdog 911 is a long time poster to these forums and under the former forum software was labeled a TechKnow Guide.  Under this new software, they gave us gold stars.  You can rely on his statement that the HR44 is the only known correction for the NBC HR34 problem.  Getting a different HR34 will likely exhibit the same issue.

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Feb 15, 2014 4:55:27 AM
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After months of trying, directtv offered to send me the upgraded HR44 receiver which according to what I read here would improve the problem. When I received it yesterday not only was it the same HR34 that I now have, but a reconditioned one to boot.

Tough to deal with folks who treat customers in this fashion.

After months of trying, directtv offered to send me the upgraded HR44 receiver which according to what I read here would improve the problem. When I received it yesterday not only was it the same HR34 that I now have, but a reconditioned one to boot.

Tough to deal with folks who treat customers in this fashion.

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Feb 15, 2014 9:30:36 AM
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ACE - Expert

That's a bummer, weflood.   CSRs should not make that promise because they have no control over which Genie model gets shipped.  The only sure way to get an HR44 is to buy one yourself (SolidSignal.com) or call for a service visit and hope that's what the tech has on their truck.

That's a bummer, weflood.   CSRs should not make that promise because they have no control over which Genie model gets shipped.  The only sure way to get an HR44 is to buy one yourself (SolidSignal.com) or call for a service visit and hope that's what the tech has on their truck.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Feb 15, 2014 3:55:50 PM
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weflood,

i bit the bullet and paid for the service call.  The tech took one look at a recording I had with the problem and said you need a 44.  Went out to his van and brought in a brand new HR44 and so far the problem has not returned.  Got a happy wife now.

weflood,

i bit the bullet and paid for the service call.  The tech took one look at a recording I had with the problem and said you need a 44.  Went out to his van and brought in a brand new HR44 and so far the problem has not returned.  Got a happy wife now.

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Aug 27, 2014 9:39:11 AM
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I have 2 dvr units and the oldest has just started to do the same thing and I am also starting to see it during regular viewing also.  I have no trouble with the other units in the house including the other dvr.  The recorded shows have become almost unviewable since they it freezes and then jumps ahead also the unit itself is starting to freeze up. after unplugging and and going thru all the reset it is OK for and hour or so then starts acting up again.  My wife told me the other night she was watching and it threw an blue error screen up and to contact 771.  I didn't see it but the reboot to get it to run again fixed it for the time being.  Will probably have a tech out next week

I have 2 dvr units and the oldest has just started to do the same thing and I am also starting to see it during regular viewing also.  I have no trouble with the other units in the house including the other dvr.  The recorded shows have become almost unviewable since they it freezes and then jumps ahead also the unit itself is starting to freeze up. after unplugging and and going thru all the reset it is OK for and hour or so then starts acting up again.  My wife told me the other night she was watching and it threw an blue error screen up and to contact 771.  I didn't see it but the reboot to get it to run again fixed it for the time being.  Will probably have a tech out next week

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Aug 27, 2014 6:59:20 PM
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ACE - Expert

The 771 error suggests that your dish is not aligned properly and your signal levels are marginal.  Start a new thread and post back with your signal readings on each satellite and we can advise.

The 771 error suggests that your dish is not aligned properly and your signal levels are marginal.  Start a new thread and post back with your signal readings on each satellite and we can advise.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Aug 28, 2014 8:30:46 AM
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Signal strengths are great and all the other units work fine including the other DVR.  This one has been acting up for a while and is 7 years old and is the main unit and pretty much on all the time

Signal strengths are great and all the other units work fine including the other DVR.  This one has been acting up for a while and is 7 years old and is the main unit and pretty much on all the time

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Aug 28, 2014 9:47:36 AM
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ACE - Expert

You can try swapping a "good" and the "bad" Receiver to verify if it's a receiver or a cabling/connection issue.

You can try swapping a "good" and the "bad" Receiver to verify if it's a receiver or a cabling/connection issue.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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