Sunday, September 16, 2007

Welcome to the Pace Vegas TDC-575D user review

  • A quick intro for those visiting this blog for the first time. The Pace Vegas is a dual tuner standard definition (SD) DVR (or PVR if you prefer). It allows you to record any two programs at the same time on the hard disk. In the USA you can rent this DVR from your cable provider such as Comcast(or others). On Comcast it runs the same software that the other Comcast cable DVRs use (eg the Motorola 3412, 6412, 3416, 6416, etc). These cable and satellite rented DVRs have some similarities to TiVo, but TiVo is considered to have a better user interface, more expandability and realiability. Of course you have to buy the TiVo hardare device (expensive) and have to pay a monthly or lifetime fee for the TiVo service (eg updated software, new tv listings, etc).
  • Note: The latest updates are posted at the bottom of this post in chronological order (easier to read than reverse chronological order).
  • Welcome to the restructured blog! I re-arranged the content to (hopefully) make it more readable. To make the blog faster to load and easier to read, I changed to one post only on the front page. All the content is listed on the right hand column, and in the list below. If you have any questions, or suggestions or corrections or recommendations or bug fixes, please feel free to post them!
  • Please note all these are based on my experience as an end-user. I am not running
    repeated tests or using any test equipment!
  • First Impressions was my first hand experience with this Pace Vegas TDC-575D DVR.
  • General usage and performance in this post
  • How To type of posts in the how to post
  • Content for advanced users here, and a dedicated post on the diagnostic menus with lots of screenshots
  • If you are switching from a Motorola DVR, please check the switching from Motorola 341x/641x post.
  • Problems, issues, bugs, crashes and all that stuff in the Trouble Report.
  • I am currently on my 2nd box which I creatively call "Box #2". My historical experience with box #1 (which I returned) is here

    Today I have switched to a new box hoping to get rid of the program transition bugs. All the updates have been moved to Box #2 Update log. The Trouble Report that accompanies this box (box #2) is here.

    The new box is named Box #3! It will have its own Trouble Report. The daily updates will be posted right here.

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    Michael said...

    Hello -
    Just found your "user review" after having my unit begin to have issues which began by freezing and later an unusal noise began that I felt was the hard drive. When I woke this morning and turned the unit on I found that it had lost a couple of recorded movies. With only 2 hours of saved recording space I was given the 100% full message and was unable to clear "reboot" the unit. I returned it to Comcast and was given a new(?) unit which failed in less then 5 hours. The basic symptom was the unit was reseting virtually every hour for 3 hours. Returned this unit 5 hours later and the customer service representative who went out of the room and made sure to get a unit that had been fully tested.
    This problem did not really start until I began "powering" down the unit at bedtime.
    The original unit seemed to have lasted about 2 months and I use it quite a bit.
    The worst part of course was losing 2 movies I had not watched yet and are not on often.
    Hope this doesn't happen to you.

    High Tech User Reviews said...

    Thanks for your comments! I have read about the 100% bugs, but they haven't happened to me (yet). People have experienced similar 100% bugs with the Motorolas on Comcast. (I had the 641x and 341x before trying this one).

    I experienced first hand the Motorolas on Comcast getting more buggy and more flaky when they were turned off/on/off/on. After that I kept them on all the time and that made them less unreliable.

    I kept the Pace boxes on all the time, but didn't help with the daily crashing/freezing. I was recently told the hard disk is powered down when the box is turned off, so I decided to boldly try to power it down when not in use. If nothing else, it may save some energy. Or perhaps (hopefully) help with the crashing/freezing. I only do it for long periods of time (eg overnight). I plan to turn it off only when it's gonna be at least 4 hours without using it. Only time will tell!