Problem with Hughes DVR40 D* Tivo

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by toobleu, Mar 28, 2011.

  1. toobleu

    toobleu New Member

    3
    0
    Mar 9, 2006
    I have a Hughes DVR40 Series 2 DirecTV Tivo that is on its 3rd HDD. I have been running on a Samsung Spinpoint 160G for the last 6 years. Recently I have gotten a lot of odd behavior, different from past HDD failurs. It started with me receiving several messages from DirecTV that I needed to activate my DVR. Then I stated to get stuttering and some pixellation of the picture when watching live video. Now, when I am using the guide, it will suddenly disappear from the screen as if I dismissed it. That also happens with the info screen. I am also unable to enter my security code to unlock "content blocked" video. When I select a "content blocked" recording in the "Now Playing" list, the password screen pops up, and then immediately goes away before I can enter any numbers. In addition, I am also getting occasional invalid access card errors. When I run a systems test, the signal strength on both tuners is in the mid 90's. The access card sometimes passes and sometimes fails. Recorded video that is not content blocked, seems to play OK, i.e. without any skipping or pixellation.

    Another odd thing is that if I unplug the unit for a few hours and plug it back in, I get no lights, and no video output for a few minutes. It sounds like the HDD spins up, but I get no indication of any activity. After a few minutes, I will get the green and red lights on the front panel flash alternately, and finally the green light will come on solid and I'll get the "Powering up" messages. From this point it will progress normally up to the acquiring satellite info screen. Then about half of the time it will reboot before the process completes. It then usually finishes correctly the second time.

    So my question is, are these symptoms consistent with an HDD failure, or am I having some other problem, like a power supply or main board problem?
     
  2. ss_sea_ya

    ss_sea_ya New Member

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    Sep 2, 2010
    Alexandria, VA
    Have you tried any of the "kickstart" codes? If found on my Hughs DirecTV dvr that not all kickstart codes work, and some use a different #. Don't recall the exact differences of which code does what, but for example only, code 54 might act like code 57 instead.


    You can pull the drive and run the manufacture tests as well.
     
  3. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

    16,576
    41
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    At this point I'd suspect both drive and power. Carefully inspect the big capacitors (with the unit unplugged!)
     
  4. toobleu

    toobleu New Member

    3
    0
    Mar 9, 2006
    I have not tried the kickstart codes, but I've checked the HDD using the manufacturers utility, and it passes all tests, including a full surface test.

    As near as I can tell, the power supply also seems fine. Testing at the J2 connector I get Gnd on pins 1, 5, 8, 10, 11, 14, 17, and 20; I get 3.32v on pins 2, 3, 4, 12, and 13; I get 5.03v on pins 6, 7, and 16; I get 12.02v on pins 9, 13, and 19; and I get 29.4v on pin 18. (I could be counting pins backwards) All voltages look clean on an o'scope. I don't have a schematic to tell if the voltages are correct, but they all look solid and clean. The only voltage I'm not familiar with, and thus don't know if it is correct, is the 29.4v supply.

    I'm really leaning towards a bad motherboard at this point, and maybe send it to Weaknees to fix.
     
  5. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

    16,576
    41
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    Look on the big caps in the power supply. One should have a sticker wrapped around it giving the nominal voltages.

    I assume if you've got a 'scope I don't need to tell you to unplug the unit first, but for the benefit of future readers....
     

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