Tivo Series 3 Having Issues Should I Fix or Purchase a Premier XL

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by joe1515, Jan 9, 2012.

  1. Jan 9, 2012 #1 of 16
    joe1515

    joe1515 New Member

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    Jul 21, 2009
    Bayport, NY
    I have a tivo series 3 that is starting to act up and have issues. The menus are moving really slow and sometimes, it will take forever for my now playing list to load the system needs to be re-booted to work. Once it loads the tivo does still work. The re-boot still does not solve the issue. I suspect from what I have read that it sounds like the hard drive is starting to go bad.

    My question is should I look to fix the series 3 or purchase a new premier xl. The logical step would be to just uprade to the premier xl. It seems to get the series 3 fixed would cost almost as much as the premier xl if I sent the unit to weaknees for example. My main concern is all the problems the new premier boxes are having.

    The series 3 is the unit with the clock and channel display information. I have verizon fios.

    Your thoughts are greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Joe
     
  2. Jan 9, 2012 #2 of 16
    mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

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    Ellicott...
    The first question that comes to mind is, how full is your hard drive? If you're close to maxing out the capacity your Tivo's performance will slow to a crawl. Make sure you've got Tivo's suggestions turned off and delete whatever is in the recently deleted folder.

    Hard drive issues usually reveal themselves by stuttering, inadvertant reboots, freeze-ups, GSOD, etc. If you still think it might be a hard drive issue then get a copy of the drive manufacturer's diagnostic tools and run a check on the drive in your PC. The quick test will usually reveal any glaring issues with the drive. If it passes then perform the long test. If it still passes then the drive is probably OK.
     
  3. Jan 9, 2012 #3 of 16
    joe1515

    joe1515 New Member

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    Jul 21, 2009
    Bayport, NY
    Thanks for the reply. My hard drive is about half full and my deleted items is empty. How do I run the diagnostic on the hard drive?

    Thanks,
    Joe
     
  4. Jan 9, 2012 #4 of 16
    unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    The hard drive inside your TiVo (you'll have to open up the TiVo and remove the hard drive to connect it to a PC) is probably a Western Digital so you go to the WD site and download the bootable cd image of their diagnostic software and burn a copy, then boot the PC from the cd with the TiVo drive attached (Do Not boot into Windows with it attached) and follow the instructions.

    Run the short test, then run the long test.

    It'll take a long time.

    While you've got the TiVo open, closely and carefully inspect the capacitors on the power supply.
     
  5. Jan 9, 2012 #5 of 16
    mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

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    If it's just the hard drive, that's easy to fix.. even most likely saving your existing shows..

    but if you want to get rid of it, I might be interested. PM me. (I have a 'dead' S3 that I want to resuscitate)
     
  6. Jan 9, 2012 #6 of 16
    lentiman

    lentiman Ocassional User

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    Dec 31, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    I concur. Likely a hard drive issue. Just replace the hard drive and likely all your issues will go away. Same thing happened to me a couple months ago. hard drive replacement fixed it.
     
  7. joe1515

    joe1515 New Member

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    Jul 21, 2009
    Bayport, NY
    Where did you purchase the hard drive? Did you use Weaknees?

    Thanks,
    Joe
     
  8. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

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    sunnyvale
    No, if you're remotely comfortable doing a hard drive upgrade in a computer (internal hard drive), you can do it on a Tivo. You just need some special tools (physical and software)
     
  9. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    Do you have any spare hard drives lying around, even one that's only temporarily available? If so, SATA or PATA and what size.

    Also, do you mean original S3 (TCD648250) or S3 HD (TCD652160) or it's THX-certified sibling, the HD XL (TCD658000)?

    All of the Series 3 models are starting to report power supply capacitor problems, so let's be sure your problem is only a hard drive one before we start throwing money around.

    The recent floods in Thailand have caused hard drive prices to skyrocket lately.
     
  10. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

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    Ellicott...
    I'm pretty sure the original S3 is the only THX certified Tivo, which is why it was so much more expensive than the later models. Neither the HD or HD XL are THX certified, AFAIK.
     
  11. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    Apr 28, 2006
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    Well, when the XL boots up it plays a THX animation instead of the TiVo guy jumping around.

    'course I was running an XL image on a regular HD, and don't actually own an HD XL to read the fine print on the box.
     
  12. tds4182

    tds4182 Member

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    Dec 15, 2003
    Kingwood, Tx


    It's been quite a while since my HD XL rebooted but I'm pretty sure that, at some point during the rebooting process, I got a screen saying the unit was THX certified.
     
  13. joe1515

    joe1515 New Member

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    Jul 21, 2009
    Bayport, NY
    I have the THX certified. The unit has the clock and tuner information on the front of the unit.

    Joe
     
  14. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

    16,576
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    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    If the front looks like an old mercury bulb thermometer lying on its side, that's the original S3, the TCD648250.

    Here's a picture:

    http://www.tivopedia.com/model-tivo-series3.php


    If you need a replacement drive (and we don't yet know that for sure), you'll need one at least as big as the original, which, if you have that model, will be a 250GB drive.

    Also, for any temporary "for the purposes of testing" drive replacement, you'll need at least a 250.

    Go read this page:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capacitor_plague


    then look at the picture in this thread:

    http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb/showthread.php?p=8895931

    to see how subtle the difference between a good cap and a bad one can be visually (the difference in performance is a great deal less subtle than the outward appearence).

    Do you have any cable cards in that unit?

    One? Two? S type or M type?

    Do you have a cable provider that does SDV (switched digital video) that requires the use of a TA (tuning adapter) to request that a particular channel be sent over the cable to your neighborhood if no one is already watching it?
     
  15. joe1515

    joe1515 New Member

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    Jul 21, 2009
    Bayport, NY
    Yes that is the unit I have. I have verizon fios and I am using m cable cards.

    Thanks,
    Joe
     
  16. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

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    Feb 2, 2006
    Ellicott...
    I recall that Tivo dropped the THX certification on the HD to keep the price low, but I wasn't aware that they reinstated it with the HD XL. That surprises me since it doesn't add any real value to the unit other than a higher cost. In theory it's supposed to maintain a certain standard, but it's mostly a BS excuse to jack up the price. You can thank George Lucas for creating this boondoggle.

    The original reason for having THX certification was to make sure movie theaters were keeping their systems up to a higher standard for viewing. At some point it transitioned over to consumer electronics as a selling point. The bottom line is that if the product was designed and built well to begin with it shouldn't require THX certification. It's like including a "Certificate Of Authenticity" with your shiny new A/V component.:rolleyes:
     

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