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Help with Dead Tivo HD

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by Kevin D42, Jan 19, 2013.

  1. Kevin D42

    Kevin D42 Member

    37
    0
    Nov 7, 2009
    Hi

    I would like some advice on repairing my Lifetime Tivo HD (1.5TB drive upgrade). After a recent power failure, the Tivo would not boot. Symptoms are:

    1. No Video on HDMI or composite outputs
    2. Hard drive spins up; i can hear the head seeking
    3. Fan is on
    4. Green and Yellow lights on Ethernet connector light up but do not blink; Et
    5. Cable cards removed
    6. Only power and video connected (no e-net or cable connection)
    7. Power supply voltages OK but a little low; 12V supply was 11.5V

    Based on the above, I purchased a replacement power supply from Weaknees.

    After power supply was installed, no change in results. Any ideas on next troubleshooting steps?

    FYI I am an EE so I can handle complex instrcutions but I only have a DVM.

    Thanks
     
  2. Teeps

    Teeps Active Member

    1,665
    4
    Aug 16, 2001
    Torrance,Cal...
    Install original HDD?
     
  3. L David Matheny

    L David Matheny Active Member

    1,589
    2
    Jan 29, 2011
    SE Ohio
    Have you tried pressing the Format button on the front panel a few times? If the HDMI output failed for some reason, could the composite output be disabled for certain output format settings?
     
  4. Arcady

    Arcady Stargate Fan

    3,960
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    Oct 14, 2004
    Philadelphia...
    The composite output will send video no matter what resolution the TiVo is set to. (If it is set to 720p or 1080i you will have squished video if the zoom mode is on panel, but there should still be video.)
     
  5. lillevig

    lillevig Hot in West Texas

    1,769
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    Dec 6, 2010
    San Angelo, TX
    Have you tried running the kickstart codes to check the hard drive? Here's a link:

    http://www.weaknees.com/tivo-kickstart-codes.php

    Even better, take the drive out and run the manufacturer's long drive test on it. If the drive checks out, it may be that the image got corrupted. Since you've got a non-stock drive I'm assuming that you have the knowledge and means to re-image the drive. As was suggested, try the original drive if it is still handy. Or lacking that, you can just burn an image to any drive that is at least 160GB (if you have the Tivo S3HD box). That should at least give you a go-no-go test.
     
  6. Kevin D42

    Kevin D42 Member

    37
    0
    Nov 7, 2009
    Here is what I did:

    1. Disconnected the 1.5TB drive -> no change
    2. Installed the original drive -> no change
    3. Pressed format button (with 1.5TB drive installed) -> no change

    I don't believe I can run kickstart codes as the front panel lights do not go through their normal sequence indicating when to initiate codes. Only the green power on light ever lights (on solid).

    I am coming to the conclusion the mother board is fried. Any other ideas?

    Thanks
     
  7. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    16,389
    2
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    Take out any cable cards.

    Disconnect the hard drive.

    Take out the coin cell battery and stick a plastic guitar pick or something in there to keep the contacts from shorting.

    Disconnect all cable and antenna leads.

    Disconnect any Ethernet, USB, phone line, etc.

    Disconnect everything from the back panel except the power cord.

    Connect a known good RCA lead to the yellow composite video output jack and feed it to something that's know to display what is fed into it's yellow composite video input jack.

    Plug the other end of the power supply into the wall socket and see if you get the Welcome screen or not, or even if the screen flickers when you plug in the AC cord. (this is where a switched outlet strip comes in handy)

    If still no joy whatsoever, don't forget to buy a UPS for your next TiVo and let's talk before the HD goes into a landfill.


    EDIT:

    Check the motherboard plug with the new power supply connected and see how close you are to +12 V on the yellow and +5 on the red and +3.3 on the orange if it uses orange.

    It's not absolutely impossible that the new supply also has problems (or that the old one didn't), so we need to see if the board is drawing more current than it should.

    You can probably also test it with the plug to the motherboard disconnected and just a hard drive as the load long enough to do a quick voltage check.
     
  8. Kevin D42

    Kevin D42 Member

    37
    0
    Nov 7, 2009
    No Joy, put in specified configuration. no video out.

    Voltages measured at motherboard PS connector with hard drive attached:

    Orange 3.33V
    Red 5.04V
    Yellow 11.3V

    Anything else to try?
     
  9. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    16,389
    2
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    That 12V line is a little on the low side.

    Do you know enough to trace back to find the one or two caps which have their negative lead(s) attached to ground and their positive leads directly connected to the yellow wires?

    That's what a service tech would call being "across" the 12V output.

    I'd replace that/those cap(s) on GP, non-bulging or not.
     
  10. Kevin D42

    Kevin D42 Member

    37
    0
    Nov 7, 2009
    I can trace back to the relevant caps; however, this is the new PS from weakknees. Seems like a long shot that both PSs are bad.

    I'll take a close look at replacing the caps on the old PS and swapping that in.
     
  11. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    16,389
    2
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    Regardless of where it came from, how old it is, how much use it's seen, that +12V line is too low.
     
  12. Arcady

    Arcady Stargate Fan

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    Oct 14, 2004
    Philadelphia...
    I thought Weakness just sold repaired units. Why else do they ask for the old one back?
     
  13. Kevin D42

    Kevin D42 Member

    37
    0
    Nov 7, 2009
    All,

    I followed all the posted suggestions and I am convinced it's a mother board issue. I don't have the tools to troubleshoot or fix.

    With the release of the the mini, I will probably go that route eventually.

    So, I have a lifetime subbed Tivo HD (stock HD) with both the original PS (original caps) and a new $99 PS from Weaknees.

    Any one interested?

    Thanks for all the help.
     
  14. reubanks

    reubanks New Member

    262
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    Feb 19, 2006

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