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Philips DTR1500 gone bad


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Old 18-10-2005, 22:12
peterout
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Was resetting favourites following channel number changes this evening when picture broke up then froze, then box turned itself off. Now whatever I do I just get flashing red light and cannot turn it on. Have tried soft reset and 'factory reset' several times, but it just sits there flashing red at me! Now disconnected it from everything and using my other box (a Labgear Setpal box) which seems to be working fine.
Any one with similar problem??
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Old 18-10-2005, 23:34
guylj
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I have two DTR1500s and hadn't got round to updating. About 19:40 on Channel4 News tonight (Sandy Heath TX) I got some bad break up and then the box (sw ver 32) froze completely - wouldn't change channel or go into standby. Then it seemed to power down to standby (red LED) and up again on its own (orange LED). I fired up the other box (sw ver 23) and tuned to C4 News and it also was breaking up badly but didn't freeze. Normally I get zero break up - maybe one tiny glitch every two weeks - so this was very unusual indeed.

Later in the evening I decided to rescan to pick up the new channel allocations. This required a virgin reset on both boxes which is always a messy business. I think it was more complicated than usual because I have the remote control settings different for each box and I think the box which I had set to the non default setting for remote signalling was dropping back to the default setting and when I entered the 9900 code it was ignoring this until I had entered OK to accept the remote protocol. However I really don't know because I was stabbing buttons in frustration by then.

You hadn't changed your remote code by any chance had you? Even if not it seems to take a number of times entering the 9900 code with the red lights flashing before it finally accepts it. You have to allow it quite a long time. And I find you need to hold the + button continuously from before you reconnect the mains to the point at which the orange LED starts to flash, then let the + button go and after a second or two press it again briefly. Then you get both LEDs red with one flashing and you need to enter the code. Sometimes it just sits there and you can reenter the code in which case it may accept it and you are OK or it rejects it and comes up without the virgin mode reset in which case you have to start the whole wretched process again.

I really cannot understand why Philips implemented it this way. In another room I have an old Philips DTX6371 On Digital Box and this just needed a "Store Channels" as opposed to "Add Channels".

On the DTR1500 it isn't just your favourites that have to be completely reset, it is all the other things like Aspect Ratio, SCART protocols, Banners etc etc that you have to go through again.
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Old 19-10-2005, 00:25
peterout
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Thanks for suggestions, but all I get when I plug power in (whether or not I hold down + ) is right led flashing red for about 15 seconds, then it stays steady and orange comes on steady for about 3 seconds, then it starts the sequence all over again. Tried 9900 at various points in the never ending cycle and also randomly stabbing buttons! But nothing brings it out of the red flashing, red/orange steady, red flashing again cycle.
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Old 19-10-2005, 01:35
Netizen
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My DTR1500 has become very unstable since the EPG update, at first I wasn't going to post about it as it doesn't make any sense but now I think there's something in it! I deliberately did a virgin reset before rescanning, knowing that the box has problems when renaming channels. All evening I've had lockups and reboots while channel hopping.

I know Philips always meant this model to be obselete at some point, but this is taking the piss!
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Old 19-10-2005, 10:52
guylj
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peterout - you've probably tried this but just in case - when you have the red and orange leds lit try pressing OK just once. Then you might find the 9900 is accepted either immediately afterwards or on the next power up. But I guess you have probably tried this already.

Netizen - the later of my two boxes (on the 0032 sw) crashed (not just locked - it went into standby and the red led came on followed by the orange one) before the virgin reset yesterday evening. And following the virgin reset an hour or two later it crashed again. This has never happened before.

As of this morning things appear to be much more stable.

I have an elderly neighbour who bought a DTR 1500 (on my recommendation because of the stable reception) and there's no way she would be able to get through this process. So I will go round to see her later on. What worries me is that all this power recycling may not be terribly good for the box and if it fails to restart as it is now out of warranty it is going to be a difficult situation.

I believe that the newer Philips DTR500 box does allow you to replace all your channels via a menu function. Still, next time round, if other manufacturers have incorporated the Philips pulse killer chip under licence or developed their own equivalent, I may well change horses. Philips customer support is pretty desperate in my experience - to be fair I haven't bothered to try them for a year or so because it was such a waste of time. Whereas Panasonic I have found to be quite good - especially by email.
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Old 19-10-2005, 11:00
mentore
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I have two by now rather elderly Panasonic TU-CT 20s (October 02 and Feb 03) that have scanned in all the new channels without a problem but I also have a DTR 1500 that I use because of its timer finction for recordings on a Philips VCR.

This box bought only 18 months ago...will not scan the new channels...

I did hear that when the change that has just taken place was muted that some Freeview boxes are short on memory for the large number of channels that came into play so to speak yesterday.

Anyone else heard this and is it a possible explanation?

I have to say that I am still receiving the channles I had before including More4 but the LCNs (Local Channel Numbers) remain the old ones..eg BBC News 24 remains on Channel 40.
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Old 19-10-2005, 11:07
Netizen
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Running out of memory is one possible explanation, but then we've only had ITV4 added to the actual total of channels. If the addition of more 3 digit LCN's is causing the instability I'd be very suprised, but knowing this box it's a possibility
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Old 19-10-2005, 11:11
guylj
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mentore - I believe that the DTR1500 can hold a very large number of channels. Although I don't know exactly how many I think it is well in excess of the current total. I think Boinng gave me a figure once so you might try searching his posts. (But it might have been another poster!)

I believe that in order to get the channel renumbering (eg BBC News 24 moving from (logical) ch 40 to ch 80 you must do a "virgin reset" as described in section 10.1 on p31 of the manual (Advanced Settings).

This procedure is somewhat fraught and although I have never failed to get it to work it has sometimes taken many attempts. I am suspicious that repeatedly disconnecting and reconnecting AC power may be not good for the receiver and as you will see from the top of this thread at least one other person has so far not been able to complete the process and his box is dead.
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Old 19-10-2005, 11:16
malachigw
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I've got a DTR1500 and have also had a few issues since the channel re-shuffle.

Unless I have a newer version of the box, I don't think that it has run out of memory at this time because I managed to get the new LCN numbers just fine - but i did have to do the messy 'virgin reset' (Don't forget, you have to hold down the "+" key on the box while powering up, then press "+" again when the light begins to flash on the front, this is before you cen even enter 9900!)

The Channels that give me grief at the moment seem to be E4 and QVC - coincidentally the ones that have the MHEG transmissions at present. Viewing these channels has caused breakup, followed by the picture freezing (although the audio continues to stream for some time), followed again by the box powering down and then back up, on the channel it was last properly put into standby on.

I've had a bit more breakup than i'm used to also, although because i'm in a low reception area I get quite a lot already.

It seems that it has caused a lot of problems for people who have other STBs too - I don't think it's a problem related just to this box because I am happy with mine, although with the reputation it seems to have I understand why people think that!!

Edit - Since I can't seem to get off QVC once I tune into it, it's now banned in my household until fiurther notice! LOL

Last edited by malachigw : 19-10-2005 at 12:09. Reason: Addition
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Old 19-10-2005, 11:20
Netizen
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malachigw, you've described excatly the same problem as I have. I had perfect reception before but get the odd bit of breakup now. Although the power cycling may be harmful to the box, it's not the cause of these issues as we're all getting it at the same time.
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Old 19-10-2005, 11:44
mentore
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Hello,again ,Guys...well,I did a virgin reset with a bit of a fiddle when I got the sequence right but no disasters on the way.After back to the first time installation menu..machine searched for the channels - found them all and with the NEW LCNs ..so all is well .You do have to set up again all TV parameters etc and redo all your favourite lists which for me was the first time I had named them all and set them up properly...so good news is that the DTR 1500 is updated with all the new LCNs - seems stable - and favourites now tidied up.



BUT wouldn't have known what to do if I hadn't read the advice here first - thanks!
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Old 19-10-2005, 12:01
Boinng
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I've not patched up my own DTR1500 yet as it's now been passed onto my mother in law, but I warned her things might go awry yesterday and I knew only a virgin reset would fix it - the Philips sadly has never dealt well with channel changes like this.

If anyone's at all unsure of the virgin reset process, it goes like this:

1. Power off the box at the wall.
2. Press and HOLD the + button on the box.
3. Power back on.
4. WAIT for the orange light to blink, and then release the + button.
5. BRIEFLY press the + again.
6. The red light should now be blinking. With the remote, dial in 9900.
7. WAIT.
8. WAIT.
9. WAIT some more. The red light can carry on blinking for some time - minutes even. EVENTUALLY you will get a green light, and the box will then restart itself in "virgin" mode, and congratulate you on your new purchase.

I'm convinced a lot of problems arise when people get impatient or convince themselves that they've not done it right and it's not going to restart.. trust me, if you follow the steps above the box will reset and all your problems will be solved.

Incidentally the Philips, like most decent receivers, is designed with a theoretical limit of 999 channels in mind - so should have no problem with anything Freeview is likely to throw at it.
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Old 19-10-2005, 12:43
Subsync
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Mine died at 7:30pm, changed ch to BBC1 for her Eastenders, a picture lockup then dead, two blinking RED leds all night.

Reset won't work:

1. Power off the box at the wall.
2. Press and HOLD the + button on the box.
3. Power back on.
4. WAIT for the orange light to blink................

.........no orange light, always only red, like it's stuck waiting for the update data.

Switched to watching on my Humax 8000t which now after the ch updates likes to reboot on ch change.
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Old 19-10-2005, 12:49
Alton Towers
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I have the exact same problem as Peterout who started this topic, I did a virgin reset arount 10:00 last night and all was fine until 11:30 when my box froze and turned to low power mode, i turned it back on and it did the same again, this time it wouldnt come back on. There were no LEDs lit up at the front of the box. I tried clicking my remote and the box itself and noting happened. I turened the box off at the mains and when i turned it back on it did the same thing to me as Peterout....
The red light stays on for a few seconds, it then starts to flash, followed by the orange light on static with the red light for a few seconds. It does this process over and over again. Ive followed the mannual for Troubleshooting and reseting again and again, after half an hour i give up and switched it off at the mains.
I tried again this morning and its still the same after following Boinng's guide above.
Anyone else know whats going on.
Thats one problem i have with this box, I have to update 4 other boxes for my nan's and other family and theres has the option to replace all channels and start again. Where as this box you have to set to Virgin mode, which is messy bussiness.
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Old 19-10-2005, 14:11
DeanDS
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Well from looking at the above, I should have fun tonight with my 1500! Just a quick query re Virgin resets, does this affect any firmware updates (I'm assuming not)

Dean
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Old 19-10-2005, 14:25
malachigw
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Originally Posted by DeanDS
Just a quick query re Virgin resets, does this affect any firmware updates (I'm assuming not)

Dean
I shouldn't think so Dean! (I haven't ever received one for my box but it should be fine.)

Quick Update - I think things are a bit better at the moment. E4's MHEG doesn't appear at all now, and I can actually watch it and change channel away from it, and QVC doesn't hang up anymore - their Press Red is now working properly.

Seems like the problems might well be attended to! Anyone else having any luck at the moment?
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Old 19-10-2005, 16:10
Boinng
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Originally Posted by DeanDS
Well from looking at the above, I should have fun tonight with my 1500! Just a quick query re Virgin resets, does this affect any firmware updates (I'm assuming not)
No, if you're lucky enough to have 32 you'll keep it.
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Old 19-10-2005, 17:43
guylj
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From some of the posts it would appear that an input signal (whether corrupt or not) has caused some DTR1500s to become permanently inoperable even after power cycle reset.

If a box is still under warranty then it should be replaced or repaired.

If no longer under warranty then I wonder what the legal position might be in terms of the product's fitness for purpose? I believe that is not limited just to one year but for a reasonable life span which might be several years in this case.
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Old 19-10-2005, 17:59
Netizen
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I know that stuff like fridges and washing machines have a defined 'acceptable lifespan' of 6-8 years, I wonder if it's worth contacting Trading Standards to see what they think about a STB? I couldn't return mine if I wanted anyway, as it was a gift I have no reciept.
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Old 19-10-2005, 18:39
900ft
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My DTR1500 has never crashed before, but it locked up as I tried to skip past QVC last night. It was fine after a reboot though.
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Old 19-10-2005, 19:17
Alton Towers
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Originally Posted by 900ft
My DTR1500 has never crashed before, but it locked up as I tried to skip past QVC last night. It was fine after a reboot though.
Neither as mine, i was really happy with the box until now, im wondering if anyone else as ideas on what to do.
Im thinking of taking a hammer to it lol, FREEVIEW has killed my box, looks like im going to have to buy a new one.
Ive had the box 2 years this christmas and i had it as a present i think it was from Toys R' Us.
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Old 19-10-2005, 19:41
Binary_Sleuth
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I knew from experience that yesterday the Philips DTR1500 wouldn't sort the EPG out itself so I did the virgin reset as detailed in the instruction book (what a pain in the A*SE that was!) and everything is okay.

However, this box has been problematic from the day I bought it. The numerous little bugs with the box, the lack of an over-air download, lack of updating with new Freeview features has really annoyed me.

I have complained to Philips customer services about this box on numerous occasions. However, whilst I have never once been beaten by a 'customer service' rep ever... even when dealing with British Gas, BT and Thames Water ... I have had to conceded defeat with Philips and have decided never to buy another product from them again! Totally and utterly useless customer service. A totally cr*p product that they never intended to support, sold on many false promises.

All those on here that are considering buying a more recent Philips model, I suggest you look elsewhere. You'll be wasting your money and will be ripped off.
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Old 19-10-2005, 19:47
Binary_Sleuth
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Originally Posted by Netizen
I know that stuff like fridges and washing machines have a defined 'acceptable lifespan' of 6-8 years, I wonder if it's worth contacting Trading Standards to see what they think about a STB? I couldn't return mine if I wanted anyway, as it was a gift I have no reciept.
I've already spoken with Consumer Direct [DTI's Trading Standards Helpline] and they say that as the technology is so new they don't have an idea what an acceptable lifespan a DTV box is.

I did eventually get Philips to accept that there might be an issue with their advertising of the box, particulary their description of the over air downloads to keep the box up-to-date with new features (which never happened). They offered me a new DTR 500 for 30, on the condition that I sent them the old box back. I told them to stick it!
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Old 19-10-2005, 21:10
Alton Towers
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This is wrong this is, how many people would you say have one of the DTR1500 box? all as they can do is go and buy a new one, obviously something in the EPG reshuffle as caused the boxes to do this as theres more than one person having the same problem.
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Old 19-10-2005, 21:48
DeanDS
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Just did the Virgin reset, seemed ok until the aforementioned QVC then it broke up(I only checked out of curiosity, honest!). I then put it to standby and switched it back on, now BBC 1 is breaking up, ITV ok i'll go through the rest! (Except maybe QVC!! )
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