Friday, November 11, 2005

DirecTv Plus R15 Review - Setup Installation

Thanks to the guys at Tivo Community here is a review on the new DirecTV DVR.

The Inside and Outside:

Well.... Here We go...
The outerbox:
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The Front Of the Box:
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The Front USB Port:
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The Front Access Card Slot:
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The Front Contol Center:
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The Back:
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The Back Connectors:
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The Back Power/Fan:
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The Inside:
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The Inside HDD:
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The Inside Power Supply:
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The Inside Connectors:
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The Inside Front:
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The Accessory Bag:
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The Access Card:
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-----------------------Comments:-----------------------
The R15 is "built" with higher quality then the R10. When reviewing the R10, it was thin sheet metal, self taping screws, and just felt cheap.The R15... Solid... Standard computer case screws (5 of them), easy to remove top (real easy).Weight just feels right for this component too...

HDD: Segate 160gb Hard Drive...For kicks, I tried to RMA it... just like the R10.. These are OEM drives, and they won't let you RMA them. There doesn't appear any room to "add" a second hard drive... even with an elaborate bracket.. but I will leave that to the upgrade people.

There is an RF Antenna port... BUT.. There was no RF Antenna in the accessory bag, and the remote given is the standard DTV IR remote (with generic "Duracell clones")

Access card is a new one.. I have not seen this one before.. Has the "Rethink TV logo on it. There is no indicator of what type of card it is...

If you can't tell from the pictures, the input F-RG6 ports are all color coded... So that will help you help others with installs.

The power supply cord is a Triangle design, looks just like the one from the R10.

Well that is about it for the insides and outsides...Time to go fire it up...

Setup

Just Like TiVo

As soon as you plug the power in, the unit starts to fire up.I would show you some of the first few screens but.....

First Surprise.... Copy protection, right out of the gate

My camcorder stoped recording... Why: On the LCD display of my camcorder: COPY INHIBITI have this connected via the Analog outputs... I guess the Macrovision kicks in, even with the startup screens...First time in 5 years of capturing video with that camera, I saw that message...Oh well...

Guide Setup...

Nearly identical to DTivo setup... Here are the screen shots:
Screen 01 - Pick Language
Screen 02 - General Information
Screen 03 - General Information
Screen 04 - Dish Type Selection
Screen 05 - Zip Code Selection
Screen 06 - Point Dish
Screen 07 - Dish Checklist
Screen 08 - All Transponder Signal List
Screen 09 - BAR Style Transponder Strenght
Screen 10 - Transponder List for a different SAT
Screen 11 - Setup Confirmed
Screen 12 - Downloading Advanced Program Guide Data
Screen 13 - Completed

Standard stuff...

The transponder check screen was pretty cool. It rolled through all the transponders and listed all the strength. You could menu click to the next screen, instead of waiting for them.The Advanced Guide Data download, took about 2 minutes.

NO PHONE CALL DURING SETUP... IN FACT, NO PHONE CALL AT ALL AS OF THIS WRITING------------------------------

Another Surprise

While I was seting up my remote (see below)...The UNIT abrubtly shut off... Scared me half to wits as my TV jumped to a snow screen, before it knocked out the sound.I though the unit had died (it is plugged into a UPS)...No warning, no menu option, no nothing... JUST BOOM---------

Software Update

Downloading Software.... please wait.New Software Found: 1/1/20 55/0003/1044/01/0119

Here is a picture, the VIDEO capture didn't work as for the same reason above: Copy prohibited
Download Picture: Small
Download Picture: Full

The software download took about 5-10 minutes to complete.

Once it was done:
You have to repeate Guided Setup...
Without any phone calls, it takes about 3 minute tops to do the guided setup... So that is not so bad.

Remote Setup:
Remote Screen Shot

It is a scroll through to find your code method...One tip... Going with the navigation buttons, it takes for ever. After trying a few things, I found that the Channel Up and Down will scroll and entire page.

To set the code:
Typical Universal remote: Hold Mute, Select... Blink Blink; 5 digit code... you are done.

Activation
Note to DirecTV: If you are reading this... Please put an option into your phone menu... "If you are activating equipment, press #"

Called DirecTV..
Talked to Travis (the first time)...
Earl: I would like to activate a new reciever...
Travis: Is this a replacement, or an addition
Earl: Addition
Travis/Earl: Access Card... Serial #.... RID....
Travis: Model
Earl: R15
Traivs: OOOOOOHHHH That is one of the new ones... they are really nice, I want one..[/Pickup tounge from floor.... was not expecting that]

Activated... Got the channels... Hung Up.
Started to play with the unit... DVR Services not active.
Waited for about 5 minutes, called back...

The person on the phone (couldn't remember his name).
He removed the reciever and re-activated it...
worked fine after that.

OnLine bill reads: DirecTV_DVRService_TIVO

8 comments:

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