Intermittent signal/symbol issue

Reception, channel detection, network issues, CableCARD setup, etc.
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JefferMC
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Jun 06, 2020 7:34 am

Intermittent signal/symbol issue

Post by JefferMC »

I have an issue with my HDHomeRun Connect (2 tuner, HDHR4-2US, hdhomerun4_atsc, 20200521). At times it works wonderfully. I'm normally only recording/viewing one channel at a time, so only Tuner0 is in use. Much of my usage is just one channel. Normally I have 98%-100% Signal Level and a signal quality in the 80s or 90s and a rock solid 100% symbol quality. But at other times the picture had significant issues, becoming unwatchable. I noticed this most recently away from home and when I returned I started looking into it. I upgraded the firmware and was still noticing issues.

When this occurred, Signal level was still 100%, but the signal quality would quickly rock back and forth between 60 and 100% and the symbol quality would bounce around between none and 10% sometimes recovering back 100%. The real kicker occurred when I started to see what I could see on Tuner1: tuner1 looked fine (both visually and the stats). I checked back on tuner0, and tuner0 was back to normal too. I then stopped the program on Tuner1 and as soon as Tuner1 was idle, tuner0 went back to the low signal/symbol quality. Again started a second program and again tuner0 back to normal.

Tuner0 still acts normal quite often (i.e. doesn't need Tuner1 to help it) and when it acts up, using Tuner1 seems to consistently correct it. They can be on the same or different channels, and this happens on different channels on Tuner0. The signal quality on the same channel can be 10% different between the two tuners at the same time.

The hardware is 3 years old, thus well out of warranty, and Support has decided it's a hardware problem. Before I buy a replacement, I thought I'd ask if anyone else has seen this or not to see if it's a common hardware problem or if anyone thinks it actually might be a firmware bug.

ebo
Posts: 574
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 6:58 pm
Device ID: 1016F746, 101C8CF9, 1041F134, 10532394

Re: Intermittent signal/symbol issue

Post by ebo »

Here are some things to try, although I doubt they'll fix anything.

1) You have a problem when using Tuner0 by itself but not when using both tuners. What about when using Tuner1 by itself? If you can reproduce the problem, that would suggest that neither tuner is at fault and the problem is with something common to both, such as the incoming signal level, the internal powered splitter feeding the tuners, or the power supply.

2) The most common HDHR hardware failure is with the external power supply. Early degradation is more likely to cause symptoms opposite to yours: each tuner works well by itself but both together have a problem. Still, if you have a compatible, known-good power supply it's worth a try.

3) You could try attenuating the input signal so that it's always a little under 100%. That would insure that it's never too high. But I don't see how a signal that's borderline high could get reduced to working level just because two tuners are in use, unless the greater current draw somehow reduces the gain of the internal splitter.

4) If you turn on diagnostics, reproduce the symptom and post when you did that and the HDHR's Device ID, someone at SD might be able to see what's wrong.

JefferMC
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Jun 06, 2020 7:34 am

Re: Intermittent signal/symbol issue

Post by JefferMC »

Thanks for the post, ebo.

1) I haven't tried tuner1 by itself yet. Definitely worth trying.
2) I'll look to see what I have in the brick bin that may be compatible. If not, if I can just find my universal adapter...
3) The station is 30 miles away and I'm not amplifying it, so I never really considered it could be too hot. There are other stations with signal strengths below 90 that I could see if I can replicate the behavior on.
4) I'm not sure support really wants to spend much time on a 3 year old device. I'd be glad to capture the diagnostics if they will look at them.

ebo
Posts: 574
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 6:58 pm
Device ID: 1016F746, 101C8CF9, 1041F134, 10532394

Re: Intermittent signal/symbol issue

Post by ebo »

JefferMC wrote:
Mon Jun 08, 2020 7:06 am
4) I'm not sure support really wants to spend much time on a 3 year old device. I'd be glad to capture the diagnostics if they will look at them.
Sure they will. Unlike most manufacturers of consumer electronic devices, they haven't abandoned support for even their oldest tuners (their white-box Duals, of which I have 2). Their latest firmware update for those and the HDHR3 came out last February. Of course if a tuner is out of warranty they won't repair or replace it for free.

You don't need to capture diagnostics yourself (I don't even think that's possible). Just enable Sending Diagnostic Information. BTW, it's safe to post your Device ID here. Some of us, including me, include our Device ID(s) with every post (look left). I wouldn't be surprised if one of SD's official posters encouraged you to send diagnostics.

NedS
Silicondust
Posts: 1251
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 12:38 pm

Re: Intermittent signal/symbol issue

Post by NedS »

Let me see what I can find out about it. I've reopened the support ticket.

JefferMC
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Jun 06, 2020 7:34 am

Re: Intermittent signal/symbol issue

Post by JefferMC »

I've been trying #1 (Tuner1) and I haven't seen it happen. It's intermittent on Tuner0, so I don't know if it's happened and I've missed it or if it isn't happening. I'm looking at trying to automate the capture of the Symbol Quality for myself.

JefferMC
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Jun 06, 2020 7:34 am

Re: Intermittent signal/symbol issue

Post by JefferMC »

I have both tuners up and now they're both showing stats jumping from bad to good and back. Tuner0 is much worse than tuner1, but both tuners are doing it to some degree. I have enabled diagnostics as it was happening.

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