HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Reception, channel detection, network issues, CableCARD setup, etc.
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Paulman9
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HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by Paulman9 »

I'm hoping someone can provide some suggestions on what to do to make my HDHR5-4US and HDHR4-2US useable for clear QAM on my setup. I've been using a HDHR3-US for over 9 years now. This thing runs flawlessly for my intended purpose. I initially purchased the HDHR4-2US refurbished direct from silicon dust to add 2 more tuners to my setup. Constant issues with this. It barely worked upon receipt. No more than 5 consecutive minutes of watching tv without dropping signal. RMA'd and got a slightly better quality stream on it's replacement, but still nearly useless. I relegated it to antenna where it worked decently, and kept running my original HDHR3-US on cable. Finally I got tired of still only having two channels and purchased the HDHR5-4US in 2018 new, hoping to avoid issues I had with a refurb as before. Well, again it got better, but still nowhere near as good as the HDHR3-US. I found that with a 6db tap and a 6db attenuator in line to this device, the signal was much better, but still not without issue. Since then, I've also purchased a 9db tap and 12db attenuator, and have had to swap different combinations of them to receive most channels. It's seemed to get worse recently for some reason, or maybe I'm just tired of dealing with all this. Seemingly some channels are worse with more attenuation, and some are better. I'm just throwing parts at it since this is way over my head, but is there anything I can do to make either of these new HDHRs run as good as my old HDHR3?

All three are setup in the same closet as my cable modem and router, moving them further away never seemed to help.
With no attenuation installed in line, uploads from my cable modem destroy the cable TV signal for both new devices, but not the original one.
I've replaced the cable modem once in this time frame with no perceived difference.
Wireless activity has no effect.
All coax cables were ran new from the curb in my current house 6-7 years ago.
A small TV hooked to this line seems to perform properly, holding signal, but I haven't tested this much, as my main TV has no tuner.
Problems with signal always follow the device (swapping ethernet/power/cable of new HDHR with HDHR3 always works)
Never had issues with the cable modem/internet unless putting the modem behind an attenuator or something
Tried several different software DVRs, no difference. Most testing, I just use the HDhomerun app.
99% of TV watching is to a wired PC that otherwise works fine. (Windows 10 + NextPVR to Kodi right now)
Obviously every HDHR being sold now isn't garbage, they have to be working for someone or they would be out of business, but why won't they work in my configuration?
I'm probably forgetting something I've tried in the past 6 or so years here, but any suggestions toward fixing this is greatly appreciated.

Current setup if formatting doesn't destroy this (HDHR3 works, HDHR5 is a pixelated picture dropping mess)

Code: Select all

line in 
    |
Two way splitter
   |           |
Cable modem   Two way splitter
                |         |
             HDHR3       HDHR5

signcarver
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by signcarver »

The way i like to say it is that the later the generation, the more susceptible it is to overload so you will most likely have to attenuate the signal if it is strong. I would also suggest looking at filters for possible MoCA or LTE interference and since you seem to state upload causing issues possibly one for the lower end as well. Also you may find that you need to relocate the device further away from the router or modem.

Paulman9
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by Paulman9 »

signcarver wrote:
Sun Jul 19, 2020 9:53 am
The way i like to say it is that the later the generation, the more susceptible it is to overload so you will most likely have to attenuate the signal if it is strong. I would also suggest looking at filters for possible MoCA or LTE interference and since you seem to state upload causing issues possibly one for the lower end as well. Also you may find that you need to relocate the device further away from the router or modem.
Thanks for your response. The most problem-free setup i've used with the HDHR5 is 6db tap + 9db tap + 6db attenuator all together, but even then it wasn't without problems, certain channels often unwatchable. Admittedly I tried the refurb HDHR4 in a location further away with no difference in quality, but I don't think I've tried the quatro in a different location, so I'll see if I can try that. I have no moca devices, would you still recommend a filter for that? The diagram above is literally all the coax in my house minus one cable to the antenna (close proximity but completely seperate), the only other cables I have are ethernet and power. I hadn't thought about LTE interference, but I don't have any close towers. I'm in a rural area, and the closet it's in has a metal door, I can barely get a cell signal in there. Sorry for my ignorance, but what would a 'filter for the lower end' consist of?

signcarver
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by signcarver »

An fm trap or other high pass filter... the problem is that they can block some channels as well.

What are the signal levels like on your modem as I find it hard to believe you need that much attenuation. I suggest turning on sending of diagnostics data and running a scan then post the time of it along with your deviceid so the folks at SD can take a look.

Paulman9
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by Paulman9 »

signcarver wrote:
Sun Jul 19, 2020 10:28 am
An fm trap or other high pass filter... the problem is that they can block some channels as well.

What are the signal levels like on your modem as I find it hard to believe you need that much attenuation. I suggest turning on sending of diagnostics data and running a scan then post the time of it along with your deviceid so the folks at SD can take a look.

Code: Select all

Downstream Bonded Channels
Ch	LStats	Mod	ChID	Frequency	Power		SNR	Correctables	Uncorrectables
1	Locked	QAM256	6	843000000 Hz	-10.6 dBmV	35.1 dB	23855		13273
2	Locked	QAM256	8	855000000 Hz	 -9.4 dBmV	36.5 dB	26177		25511
3	Locked	QAM256	9	861000000 Hz	 -8.7 dBmV	36.9 dB	103500351	122502868
4	Locked	QAM256	10	867000000 Hz	 -8.7 dBmV	36.8 dB	45695		33729
5	Locked	QAM256	11	873000000 Hz	 -8.3 dBmV	36.9 dB	368670		462883
6	Locked	QAM256	12	879000000 Hz	 -9.0 dBmV	36.2 dB	22189		9275
7	Locked	QAM256	15	897000000 Hz	-10.7 dBmV	34.9 dB	25720		16760
8	Locked	QAM256	16	903000000 Hz	 -9.6 dBmV	35.4 dB	23353		11070
9	Locked	QAM256	17	909000000 Hz	 -8.2 dBmV	36.5 dB	22222		10461
10	Locked	QAM256	18	915000000 Hz	 -7.7 dBmV	36.7 dB	22563		9882
11	Locked	QAM256	19	921000000 Hz	 -9.2 dBmV	35.3 dB	23973		12271
12	Locked	QAM256	20	927000000 Hz	-10.9 dBmV	33.9 dB	36639		45930
13	Locked	QAM256	21	933000000 Hz	-11.2 dBmV	33.8 dB	34173		27388
14	Locked	QAM256	22	939000000 Hz	-11.3 dBmV	33.7 dB	33194		25713
15	Locked	QAM256	23	945000000 Hz	-11.8 dBmV	33.0 dB	38870		27703
16	Locked	QAM256	24	951000000 Hz	-12.6 dBmV	32.3 dB	59057		31592
17	Locked	QAM256	25	957000000 Hz	-13.6 dBmV	30.5 dB	9785		0
18	Locked	QAM256	26	963000000 Hz	-13.0 dBmV	30.9 dB	3478		0
19	Locked	QAM256	27	969000000 Hz	-13.1 dBmV	30.8 dB	5392		0
20	Locked	QAM256	28	975000000 Hz	-13.6 dBmV	30.1 dB	48795		0
21	Locked	QAM256	29	981000000 Hz	-13.7 dBmV	30.1 dB	61119		0
22	Locked	QAM256	30	987000000 Hz	-14.4 dBmV	29.8 dB	214265		2
23	Locked	QAM256	31	993000000 Hz	-14.9 dBmV	29.5 dB	555935		36
24	Locked	QAM256	32	999000000 Hz	-16.3 dBmV	28.4 dB	10618187	872415

 
Upstream Bonded Channels
Ch	LStatus	Ch Type	Ch ID	Symbol Rate	Frequency	Power
1	Locked	ATDMA	52	2560 Ksym/sec	18700000 Hz	45.8 dBmV
2	Locked	ATDMA	51	5120 Ksym/sec	23800000 Hz	46.8 dBmV
3	Not Locked	Unknown	0	0 Ksym/sec	0 Hz	0.0 dBmV
4	Not Locked	Unknown	0	0 Ksym/sec	0 Hz	0.0 dBmV
5	Not Locked	Unknown	0	0 Ksym/sec	0 Hz	0.0 dBmV
6	Not Locked	Unknown	0	0 Ksym/sec	0 Hz	0.0 dBmV
7	Not Locked	Unknown	0	0 Ksym/sec	0 Hz	0.0 dBmV
8	Not Locked	Unknown	0	0 Ksym/sec	0 Hz	0.0 dBmV
Didn't look terrible to me from what I could find online, but its all just numbers to me. Right now with no attenuation any internet traffic kills the TV. With a filter or two in place internet doesn't affect it but it is overall unstable(drops all the same, but with no rhyme or reason). Which way would you recommend I try it when I send diagnostics?

signcarver
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by signcarver »

Where are you attenuating as those numbers look terrible like you put it before the split rather than to device but it may be your cable system needs to adjust their higher frequency amp as 10-13 dBmV more would be perfect (note i don't expect those high frequencies to ever be up to perfect range but would expect them to be about 5 higher as I was never able to leave a job outside of +/- 7dBmV).

Have you installed an amp as some older ones may not have done anything above 750 MHz... also make sure that first splitter (before modem) is rated to 1GHz and that neither of them are diplexers... for that setup I would limit to 2 quality 2 way splitters or possibly a balanced 3 way.

Also looking closer at where you have your worse correctables/uncorrectables even though higher snr than others, may imply lte interference.

I'm just trying to figure out from what was said how the signal would even need to be attenuated as that would imply a 30dBmV swing from those modem levels to where it would be above what would be acceptable with the attenuation you mentioned.

Paulman9
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Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2020 8:29 am

Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by Paulman9 »

signcarver wrote:
Sun Jul 19, 2020 1:00 pm
Where are you attenuating as those numbers look terrible like you put it before the split rather than to device but it may be your cable system needs to adjust their higher frequency amp as 10-13 dBmV more would be perfect (note i don't expect those high frequencies to ever be up to perfect range but would expect them to be about 5 higher as I was never able to leave a job outside of +/- 7dBmV).

Have you installed an amp as some older ones may not have done anything above 750 MHz... also make sure that first splitter (before modem) is rated to 1GHz and that neither of them are diplexers... for that setup I would limit to 2 quality 2 way splitters or possibly a balanced 3 way.

Also looking closer at where you have your worse correctables/uncorrectables even though higher snr than others, may imply lte interference.

I'm just trying to figure out from what was said how the signal would even need to be attenuated as that would imply a 30dBmV swing from those modem levels to where it would be above what would be acceptable with the attenuation you mentioned.
before, I had two taps instead of two two-way splitters, in addition to a 6db inline attenuator attached to the back of the hdhr5. No attenuators before the modem, that kills my internet. I just yesterday swapped from the tap to the splitter so I think my modem numbers hurt a little bit after that. I always keep the modem closest to the incoming line as I can.

I just moved the hdhr5 about 5 feet further away from the modem and it seems to be performing better than before. Right now I just have two splitters (both rated 5-2400mhz) as my above diagram, and a 6db attenuator on the HDHR5. Full speed uploads(speedtest) still kill tv in this setup, without the 6db, uploads and downloads will kill it. Browsing the internet doesn't seem to affect it much, its about the same in this setup as it seemed to be before with 6db+9db+6db, still some random blips and drops. Seems to have some variation to it over time, though, as I thought it was ok before.

I don't have an amp installed on my side, as boosting the signal that I'm getting too much of seems backwards to me (not arguing with you, just I didn't think that would help.) The box outside my house is just a coupler, no amp there either. I've been hesitant to do much ahead of my modem as my internet is flawless, I've never had a speed test come back less than what I'm paying for (400/40). Wouldn't an lte filter also block my cable modem's signal?

signcarver
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by signcarver »

I wasn't suggesting adding an amp but removing one if it existed. I was trying to come up with an explanation for the modem being at -10 when the signal should be fine at +10 tack on the attenuation you said you had it would be an even greater swing. An old amp or old splitter may have justified that... as they tend not to pass things above 750MHz. A long line of RG59 may also do such.

Though I'm not sure how the unit behaves with clear qam when dealing with ATSC (OTA), the overload is often based on everything. Depending on what frequencies your channels lie. I do suggest an LTE or other low pass filter on the leg going to the tuners (even an old 650MHz splitter might work). You should never use 2GHz+ splitters when it comes to cable/ota as those are for satellite... Even if you needed MoCA, I would still prefer 1GHz splitters (moca is designed to go through such by being strong though 1.2-1.4GHz may be more appropriate).

Paulman9
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by Paulman9 »

signcarver wrote:
Sun Jul 19, 2020 3:01 pm
I wasn't suggesting adding an amp but removing one if it existed. I was trying to come up with an explanation for the modem being at -10 when the signal should be fine at +10 tack on the attenuation you said you had it would be an even greater swing. An old amp or old splitter may have justified that... as they tend not to pass things above 750MHz. A long line of RG59 may also do such.

Though I'm not sure how the unit behaves with clear qam when dealing with ATSC (OTA), the overload is often based on everything. Depending on what frequencies your channels lie. I do suggest an LTE or other low pass filter on the leg going to the tuners (even an old 650MHz splitter might work). You should never use 2GHz+ splitters when it comes to cable/ota as those are for satellite... Even if you needed MoCA, I would still prefer 1GHz splitters (moca is designed to go through such by being strong though 1.2-1.4GHz may be more appropriate).
Gotcha. I'll get an LTE filter and a 5-1000mhz splitter. I've swapped the first two way splitter with the 6db directional coupler, through to the modem, tap to the tuners. Modem seems a bit closer to ideal (30.0db on 999mhz now, no correctables/uncorrectables on channels other than that one in the past 1'30") Still no internet speed difference but numbers look better so I'll leave it be for now.

Still have the 6db attenuator attached directly to the HDHR5 also, and it seems ok, perhaps enough to reenable it in NextPVR, I'll see after some more testing and time. Without the extra 6db, speedtest still knocks out TV. I may call the cable company again, but usually when I tell them I have one device that works and one that doesn't, they want to point fingers there. None of these fixes would help my HDHR4 enough but perhaps there is some hope for this quatro.

Anyway, thanks for your help signcarver. If the new filter and splitter do anything more for it than where it is now, it'll probably be fine because it doesn't seem too bad right now.

signcarver
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by signcarver »

!!!!!!! NOoooooooooo !!!!!! you don't want anything lower to your modem... it was at -10 already where you want to be closer to 0 (look at power measured in dBmV (which many shorthand to dB) not SNR and you just reported worse on SNR which would be best around 40 though I find often can work down to 32 depending on modem)


Edit: I wasn't looking at your previous 999MHz signal level but it still seems strange if you added -6 to it (though a tap could have one at -1 and another at -6 compared to both at -3.5)

Paulman9
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by Paulman9 »

signcarver wrote:
Sun Jul 19, 2020 3:54 pm
!!!!!!! NOoooooooooo !!!!!! you don't want anything lower to your modem... it was at -10 already where you want to be closer to 0 (look at power measured in dBmV (which many shorthand to dB) not SNR and you just reported worse on SNR which would be best around 40 though I find often can work down to 32 depending on modem)


Edit: I wasn't looking at your previous 999MHz signal level but it still seems strange if you added -6 to it (though a tap could have one at -1 and another at -6 compared to both at -3.5)
Sorry, I'm sure I'm making this confusing being I barely know what I'm talking about haha. I swapped the splitter with the tap, putting my modem on the -1db side of the tap, as opposed to the -3.5db drop from the splitter, a net gain of around 2.5db, correct? The -6db side of the tap is going to the second splitter that is feeding the two HDHRs (with the HDHR5 effectively 'seeing' -12db with the 6db attenuator added to it). My modem power output on the downstream is now max at -12.8 dBmV as opposed to the -16.3dBmV in my previous chart. My upload power is up with this setup for some reason, from 46.8 to 49.3 dBmV, but I'd assume this is still better. Let me know if I've got this wrong, though.

jasonl
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Re: HDHR5-4US can barely stay tuned to a channel

Post by jasonl »

Does the HDHomeRun work fine when you unplug the modem? If so, add a 54MHz high pass filter between the two splitters to block the upstream from the modem from interfering.

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