Very weird, PLEEZE help, pulling hair out!!

Discussion in 'TiVo Underground' started by Synthohol, Jan 14, 2006.

  1. Synthohol

    Synthohol LiquidNinjas.com

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    Jul 14, 2003
    my series 2 powers up the lights in front but the hdd's wont spin up. i thought it was the power supply but i tested the 20 outputs ant they are all in spec.

    if i leave the IDE cable unplugged and power up, the drive comes to life.
    the drives are ok

    i have the tivo out of the box and on a carpet in case it was a shorted ground.

    ive tried other drives but they wont spin unless i leave the ide cable unplugged first.


    does this sound like a bad motherboard? its 4 years old BTW and i paid for lifetime subscription. (i know 5 years is the expected life)

    i have another thread on this when i thought it was the power supply but all the power checks out now that i found the 20 pin voltages on this site.

    the 5v and 12v molex also is within spec.

    if you knowledgable folks agree that i have a dead MB i will get another series2 on ebay just so i can use tivo2go to pull my shows on to the tivo desktop and buy a new tivo with another l/t sub.

    im not gonna be annoying and keep bumping this thread so i really need your advice please!!

    Steve.
     
  2. ...coolstream

    ...coolstream New Member

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    Dec 9, 2005
    SCOTLAND
    Hi,
    just a thought, but have you tried a different IDE cable or checked for bent pins?
     
  3. Synthohol

    Synthohol LiquidNinjas.com

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    Jul 14, 2003
    oh yeah, you betcha!
    even tried the drives in my kids tivo, it booted and i got the warm up screen, the drives spun up just fine but being a different model it just reboots befor it says just a few minutes more.
    i did expect that since mine is a 14xxxxx and my kids one is the 5xxxxxx but the drives spun up fine which is what convinced me it is my motherboard :(

    reman 40 hour tivo is only 30 bucks and i can put the 200 gig drive from my broked tivo in it.

    with the tivo2go feature its like a 700 hour tivo since i have a PC dedicated for moving shows around with a 500 gig raid on it.

    im pretty comfortable with upgrading tivos now (see link below if you want) and well, im just dissapointed i didnt get the 5th expected year out of it.

    but even that said, if anyone has any idea how to fix mine im all ears :)
     
  4. Arcady

    Arcady Stargate Fan

    3,959
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    Oct 14, 2004
    Philadelphia...
    It is either a dead motherboard, or your power supply is not putting out enough wattage to start up both the motherboard and drive.

    What happens if you attach the IDE cable with the power on? (Yes, I know this is not a great idea - try it with a drive that has no important data on it.)
     
  5. Synthohol

    Synthohol LiquidNinjas.com

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    Jul 14, 2003
    the drives continue spinning up but still a black screen but at least they stay running.
     
  6. dswallow

    dswallow Save the ModeratŠ¾r TCF Club

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    Long...
    Can you watch the 5V supply while you power up with a drive connected to see what happens. If you're using a digital voltmeter turn off auto-ranging so you see faster reading changes.

    You mention "hdd's" as in plural; have you been trying 2 drives at once... if so, can you try just one?
     
  7. Synthohol

    Synthohol LiquidNinjas.com

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    Jul 14, 2003
    yes, my tivo is upgraded by me a while back to 2 drives.
    i did try 3 other single drives with other cables too.

    there was something fishy on the 5v rail with the drives connected, when the ide cable was plugged in, the voltage was way too low and fluxuating but however two things:
    i also powered the drives seperatly from a pc power supply so they spun up when i powered on the tivo but still got a black screen.
    when the ide cable was unplugged, the 5v rail was fine. there is a 5v loop that goes through the drive from the ide cable that im pretty sure is being grounded somwhere on the motherboard and not from the drives since i tried other drives.

    also when i put the drives in my kids tivo they spun up just fine and the tivo warmed up but rebooted because of the difference in models im sure.
    the drive array is fine afaik.

    when i powered the drives from the pc PSU the 5v rail (unplugged of course) on the tivo was fine and steady so something on the motherboard is causing the rail to ground out fluxuating the voltage. a true ground like from a short would cause a steady 0v or at least a non fluxuating reading.

    just so you know im not a hack or newbe, i fix copiers for a living which includes delicate electronic diagnosis and repair. copiers use a 5v reference for all its switches and sensors so this is familiar terratory:)

    im not saying i cant make a mistake but my deductive diagnostic methods are pretty sound.

    so what is your theory on the 5v rail since you brought it up? im open to more experienced suggestions with this product:)


    Steve.
     
  8. Synthohol

    Synthohol LiquidNinjas.com

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    Jul 14, 2003
    hey, i see you have ICQ, im on aol and yahoo under synthohol but no icq account.
     
  9. atmuscarella

    atmuscarella Well-Known Member

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    Oct 11, 2005
    Rochester NY
    Sounds like you should have a computer power supply - why don't you try booting with the hard drives powered by a computer power supply while connected to the TiVo IDE cables and see what happens?

    Good Luck,

    atmuscarella
     
  10. Synthohol

    Synthohol LiquidNinjas.com

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    Jul 14, 2003
    believe me, i tried :)
     
  11. Diana Collins

    Diana Collins Well-Known Member TCF Club

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    New York...
    I've seen one other report of exactly these symptoms, and it turned out to be a motherboard failure (which means the TiVo itself is dead, since the serial number is stored on the mobo). Unless you disabled encryption on this TiVo, your recordings are lost.
     
  12. Synthohol

    Synthohol LiquidNinjas.com

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    Jul 14, 2003
    well, tivo.com has a 40 hour unit for 30 bucks, i can upgrade to my 200 gig hdd so the only regret is not getting the fifth year out of it :)

    thank you all for taking time to read my thread and all who shared some input.

    in the words of Kansas "...nothing lasts forrever but the earth and sky"
     
  13. BKent74

    BKent74 New Member

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    Jan 25, 2006
    San Jose, Ca
    I'm having the same problem now...I called TiVo to ask about it and they are offering to swap out my 60-hour TiVo for the same or better for $149, and they will transfer the lifetime sub to the new box. What do you think? Good deal?

    Brian
     
  14. Gunnyman

    Gunnyman Just a boring dude

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    Jul 10, 2003
    !Texas
    Brian how did you work THAT magic?
     
  15. Nugent

    Nugent New Member

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    Jan 20, 2004
    Greenville, SC
    Check that the white ribbon cables are properly seated.
     
  16. rabbit73

    rabbit73 New Member

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    Oct 12, 2006
    Reviving this because my son did exactly the same thing and I'm having exactly the same problem. Doing some other searches points to the possibility of the power supply being bad. I have both a new PS and DSR704 on the way via ebay. I tested the old PS and it's checking out okay though.

    One thing I did notice is that if I unplugged the ribbon cable from the HDD and then plugged it in, the drive would spin up and the "powering up" screen would come on, but then it would just go to gray. I tried plugging the HDD in at various times to jump start it, but no luck.

    Anyone want to offer me words of encouragement that getting a "power up" screen means my motherboard isn't toast? Please?

    I'm accepting the fact that I've lost my recordings and I'm going to be using a new (used) tivo. First I'm going to try the new PS and see if that works. Hopefully I'll fix the old and have the new as a backup unit. I'll post up again with the results. Just looking for some optimism in the meantime.
     
  17. luder

    luder New Member

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    Sep 7, 2006
    Chicago, IL

    give this a try http://mfslive.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=73
    I made some updates more will be posted if theres any questions please feel free to post
     
  18. rabbit73

    rabbit73 New Member

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    Oct 12, 2006
    Thanks, I had already tested out both the molex and ribbon cable though. Both seem good. Also tried swapping back to the original 40g HDD (did a 250g upgrade last fall) and still nothing.

    Drive will not spin up with ribbon cable connected. Without ribbon cable, I plug in the unit and get a little audible beep, "powering up" for maybe three seconds, then it's just a blank grey screen. No front panel lights, only cooling fan. I am so hoping that getting the "powering up" at all is a good sign that the MB is okay. Or is that just a generic boot message from the eeprom and bonking out when it attempts to do the actual boot sequence? That seems to say power is good but one or more processors is no longer functioning. Boo.
     
  19. luder

    luder New Member

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    Sep 7, 2006
    Chicago, IL
    Did you check the psu ribbons to pbx board ? if not i suggest you power down the unit and press down on them to see if there snug .. how much time till you get the new unit ? i'll try to open my unit and test each power output from PSU to PBX and see if theres hope i'll post new instructions once i have a window open for my recordings i'll try to get results the next day (hopefully)
     
  20. rabbit73

    rabbit73 New Member

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    Oct 12, 2006
    Yes, molex read +5, 0, 0, +12. I don't remember what all the pads on the ribbon tested at, but IIRC some were +5, some were +3.33, some were 0. Assuming 0 was ground. Anyway hoping to have the new unit and PS by saturday. Got it off ebay so just waiting for the guy to ship from one state over. Thanks for the help so far, much appreciated.

    Anybody have an opinion on whether or not the motherboard might be okay? I do get the "powering up" screen, so there's got to be some life there. Right? (please?!) I think I've become emotionally attached to my tivo. :)
     

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