HDMI/DVI trouble with Vizio Plasma. TV or HDTivo issue?

Discussion in 'DirecTV TiVo Powered PVRs & Receivers' started by kgclark75, Jan 21, 2005.

  1. kgclark75

    kgclark75 New Member

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    Sep 4, 2002
    Syracuse, NY

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    I just purchased a new HD Vizio Plasma TV (from Costco) and HDTivo (from Solid Signal). I'm connecting the HDTivo through the supplied HDMI-DVI cable. The audio is connected to my receiver using the optical audio out.

    The problem is that when I turn off the TV and the receiver, the HDTivo locks up and requires an unplug to be restarted. This is reproducible nearly every time. Like clockwork, about 20-30 seconds after turning the TV off, you can hear the Tivo's hard drive spin down and at that point, it will no longer accept any commands from the remote or front panel. If the TV is turned back on, the screen displays snow.

    After several calls to D* tech support, they sent out a new HDTivo. Much to my dismay, I had the exact same problem with the new unit. The latest D* tech support guy thinks it's a problem with the HDMI-DVI conversion. They said that since the HDMI port carries audio and video, that somehow the (unused) audio portion of the signal is messing up the sync with the TV and causing the unit to lock up.

    Does this sound like an HDMI issue on the Tivo, a problem with the Vizio plasma, or simply an incompatibility between the two? The build date on the first unit was 11/21/04 (the day before the supposed HDMI fix) and no date was listed on the second.

    I don't have another TV with a DVI port and it would be a royal PITA to exchange the plasma. Although, I would definately be willing if it will fix the problem. Is it worth trying another brand of HDMI-DVI cable? (the only brand locally I can find is Monster at around $120)
     
  2. spooniep

    spooniep New Member

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    Jan 22, 2005
    I have just purchased a Vizio P42HDe Plasma TV and HD TiVo, and have the almost the exact same problem.

    If I turn off the TV for more than a couple of hours (not just a couple of minutes in my case), the HD TiVo locks up and displays only snow. I then have to unplug the TiVo and go through the 10 minute restart cycle every time.

    I will try all of the following to see if they have any impact:

    1) Switch down to 720p from 1080i (I think the picture looks better in 720p anyhow)
    2) Open up the unit and check for a loose HDMI card (per other posts on a related topic)
    3) Use Component instead of HDMI/DVI (this is the least appealing option, because the picture quality does degrade some from HDMI for me)

    My guess is that only #3 will solve the problem, given other posts I've read on problems with the HDMI output on this receiver.

    I'll post back with any results of my testing over the next few days.

    BTW... I was using my Vizio with another HDCP DVI device for 3 weeks with absolutely no problems, so I wouldn't blame the TV. It's clear that the HDMI port on the HR 10-25 has flaws. With all of the unresolved issues with the HDMI output on this receiver It's starting to sound like good grounds for a class-action suit.
     
  3. kgclark75

    kgclark75 New Member

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    Sep 4, 2002
    Syracuse, NY
    I tried switching the output resolutions and it made no difference. In my case, switching to Component video "solved" the problem. I personally can't tell the difference in picture quality. However, since only one of the Component video inputs on the Vizio seems to work with progressive scan devices, I had to turn off Progressive Scan on my DVD player which obviously negatively impacts DVD quality.

    I also was using the DVI port with a stand-alone HD tuner/receiver for a few days before getting the HDtivo. It worked just fine, although the unit had a DVI port rather than an HDMI port like the Tivo.

    Not using the HDMI port will have much more severe consequences once D* starts transmitting shows with HDCP protected content. Hopefully by that point, the problem will have been resolved.
     
  4. spooniep

    spooniep New Member

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    Jan 22, 2005
    If I end up switiching to component, I suppose that I'll have the same issue with loss of quality on my DVD player (over 480i on the YcbCr input instead of 480p on the YpbPr input as it is today).

    I'm guessing that the problem that we're encountering is different than the hardware failures reported elsewhere on this forum, and likely to be a software/firmware bug.

    I decided I'd try one other thing... I ordered a new HDCP/DVI-D cable from a different manufacturer ($7.95 on eBay, why not?) I had read somewhere in another forum that this fixed the problem for someone with the same problem on a JVC TV.
     
  5. Robert Spalding

    Robert Spalding TiVo Special Member

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    Jan 12, 2001
    Portland, OR

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    i have the exact same problem and ordered a new replacement from D*. let's hope it works this time.
     
  6. nymjk

    nymjk New Member

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    Dec 24, 2003
    Long...
    Spoon,
    What is the build date of your HDTivo? Is it after the supposed "problem" date of 11/22/04?
    I'm supposed to pick up mine tomorrow from VE (we live right near him) and was wondering, can one tell from the outer box what the build date is? I'd like to be able to check it out before opening the box, but I will if I have to.
     
  7. spooniep

    spooniep New Member

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    Jan 22, 2005
    My build date turned out to be 11/3/04 (mexico), even though I just bought it.

    I don't know if there's any way to know build dates from the outside of the box, and I've heard that January build models don't necessarily have a date on the receiver itself. So many other posts report problems even with post 11/22 models, that I doubt that will solve the problem. Of course, if it does, I'll be on the phone to D* as soon as possible to demand a replacement.

    P.S. Does anyone know why the image is so much darker on the Component outputs than on HDMI? I've calibrated my TV to the same settings for both, and Component is still noticably darker. God, I wish the HDMI/DVI-HDCP output would just work properly on this!
     
  8. nymjk

    nymjk New Member

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    Dec 24, 2003
    Long...
    Hey Spoon,
    So, how do you like the Vizio, all in all? I had authorization from she-who-must-be-obeyed to purchase the 37" Sony plasma when the Vizio/Costco deal came about. It was too good to pass up; damn near half the price of the Sony. Got it in the house for almost a week now and haven't opened it up -- I've got nothing to feed to it so figured I might as well wait.
     
  9. spooniep

    spooniep New Member

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    Jan 22, 2005
    I've been very pleased with my Vizio so far. Make sure you got the P42HD "e" model (dark grey bezel), though, since everything I've heard is that it's much better thatn the old P42HD (silver bezel).

    Colors are very vivid and black levels blow away similarly priced LCD sets. It performs best when fed with 720p/1080i content over the yPbPr port, or via DVI from everything (but for the damned HDTiVo bug).

    Overall, the internal scaler performs admirably with all resolutions, and I haven't really noticed any issues with artifacting or combing on the image at all.

    I have tried to use AVIA to calibrate the set to get the best performance, but I find that those settings generally end up too dark for my tastes and in my viewing area which has a decent amount of ambient light (I do usually stick with the AVIA settings in my home theater, where I can control the light better). Also, I find that I do have to bump up the brightness into the upper 50s or low 60s for all of the analog inputs in order reveal some detail that gets lost in the blacks when set to the AVIA setting. Go figure.

    I think for $2K you really can't get better price/performance today. Most of what you can find for that price is 27-30" LCDs and a couple of poorly rated EDTV Plasmas. The LCDs seem anemic in size compared to the 42" Viz, and frankly, once you've become accustomed to HDTV, you can't turn back to EDTV.

    My only gripe is with the quality of the audio built into the set. I do struggle with trying to get dialogue audible without the music and effects levels being too loud. I suppose much of my opinion on that is related to being used to watching films on a true 5.1 setup, rather than downmixed to 2 channels.

    Feel free to send me a private message if you want to chat more about it, or check for the large P42HDe thread on AVSForum.

    ...now I return you to the topic at hand.
     
  10. Robert Spalding

    Robert Spalding TiVo Special Member

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    Jan 12, 2001
    Portland, OR
    I called D* today and they gave the infamous "we are aware of it and are working on a fix" line. I just switched back to conponent for now and have to suffer with non-progressive scan for DVD's. I have the Xbox hooked up via VGA.
     
  11. spooniep

    spooniep New Member

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    Jan 22, 2005
    I just read something on AVSForum that I'm gonna try to solve the DVI/HDMI issue:

    "I purchased a Gefen DVI Detective, and it solved the problem. The HD Tivo never shuts off or acts strangely now. The DVI Detective reads the EDID data from the TV when it's first installed, then sends it to the Tivo so it thinks the TV is always on. The problem only happened when the TV was turned off for a while, then turned back on."

    Interesting. I think I'll pick up one of those $69 buggers and see if it will work.
     
  12. TiMo Tim

    TiMo Tim LostVotingVirginity

    9,146
    82
    Jul 20, 2001
    Bloomington, IL
    JVC has a hardware fix for their HD-ILA sets with this HDMI compatibility problem. I suspect the "software fix" being promised by D* will make a similar change to the protocol or handshake checks to avoid breaking the link when one or the other is powered off.

    Why spend $69 for a fix? Demand a hardware fix from your TV manufacturer! (Or a software fix from D*!) I wonder who's really at fault with this problem. JVC says the problem only exists when connected to some video sources (HD-TiVo being one of them, and possibly the Zenith DVB-318 being another).

    Tim
     
  13. spooniep

    spooniep New Member

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    Jan 22, 2005
    Unfortunately, demanding results from either D* or V, Inc. is pretty futile. Given the numerous users who have tried to get D* to do something about the problems with HDMI on the HR10-250, and the lack of tech support that I've heard about from Vizio owners, I think that I'd rather spend $69 than spend hours of my time on the phone getting passed around tech support hell.
     
  14. jmorgis

    jmorgis New Member

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    Jul 21, 2004
    The 11/22 date means NOTHING. I dont know who started that. But my Dec 2nd build (actually my second HDTivo) died exactly as my first (bad HDMI)

    The 3rd replacement came last week, i just moved the HDMI card to my tivo and didnt loose any programming.

    I dont think there is ANY fix for the HDMI problem...(sorry to say)

    JM
     
  15. spooniep

    spooniep New Member

    37
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    Jan 22, 2005
    The HDMI issue we're talking about isn't the hardware failure issue that many people have experienced. It's a software issue that causes the HD TiVo to freeze after you turn off your Vizio P42HDe Plasma TV, so the DVI Detective might just work to fix that particular problem.
     
  16. qdoggg

    qdoggg Tivo Freak

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    Jan 24, 2004
    SF Bay Area, CA
    Yup... same problem with the Vizio here. I'm just gonna go component and wait it out a bit before plopping down another $69+.

    Please post updates!
     
  17. Robert Spalding

    Robert Spalding TiVo Special Member

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    Jan 12, 2001
    Portland, OR
    I just bought the DVI Detective online, Should have it early next week, I'll post my results then.
     
  18. Robert Spalding

    Robert Spalding TiVo Special Member

    409
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    Jan 12, 2001
    Portland, OR
    Got the DVI Detective hooked up and all is well. Haven't had the HDCP/HDMi handshake problem since I hooked it up (three days)

    all is good, Xbox via RGB with the VGA2Xbox adaptor and the DVI Detective frees up a progressive scan port for my DVD player.
     
  19. DTV TiVo Dealer

    DTV TiVo Dealer Snr. Member/Retailer

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    Nov 13, 2002
    Scarsdale, NY
    As a professional courtesy we are offering forum members the Gefen detective for $60.

    -Robert
     
  20. spooniep

    spooniep New Member

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    Jan 22, 2005
    Great to hear. I'll be ordering one today! My DVD player looks so crappy on the 480i input, so I'm psyched.
     

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