Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

EHD's and DVR's

Last response: in Storage
Share
April 6, 2010 10:16:34 PM

Regarding EHD's for DVR expansion I notice that Directv uses esata and Dish uses USB. Does that mean the Directv DVR combined with a esata EHD will preform a lot batter than a Dish DVR combined with a USB EHD?

More about : ehd dvr

a c 415 G Storage
April 7, 2010 1:44:37 AM

The speed required to record or play back a movie bit stream is pretty slow compared even to USB 2.0, so performance shouldn't be an issue. It's not like you're trying to watch an hour-long TV show in only 3 minutes on eSATA vs. 10 minutes on USB.

But handling multiple streams at once could conceivably be an issue. For example, if you have multiple HD tuners and are trying to watch one show while recording two others, then you might run into a bottleneck. If so, I'd expect there to be some mention of it in the DVR manual.
April 7, 2010 2:53:46 AM

sminlal said:
The speed required to record or play back a movie bit stream is pretty slow compared even to USB 2.0, so performance shouldn't be an issue. It's not like you're trying to watch an hour-long TV show in only 3 minutes on eSATA vs. 10 minutes on USB.

But handling multiple streams at once could conceivably be an issue. For example, if you have multiple HD tuners and are trying to watch one show while recording two others, then you might run into a bottleneck. If so, I'd expect there to be some mention of it in the DVR manual.


Thanks for the info. I am wondering about the transfer speed from the DVR's hard drive to the EHD. It seems that many are using EHD's designed for computers for DVR storage, like WD Essentials and Elemental. I am concerned about the many complaints about WD's Smartware with the Essentials.
Related resources
a c 415 G Storage
April 7, 2010 4:29:56 AM

I'm not quite understanding your concern. Any PC software that comes with the drive simply wouldn't be used by the DVR, so if that's what you plan to use it for then wouldn't any complaints about the software be irrelevant?
April 7, 2010 5:37:28 AM

I'm not sure how this "smartware" feature works but the reviews I've read state that you need to go to the WD site and follow their instructions on how to disable the feature. If you do not then problems arise. Many that have used the WD My Book Essential for a DVR backup have had problems even after disabling this feature. Maybe I'm misinterpreting the information but that's my understanding. When you buy this item from Amazon they include instructions on how to disable "smartware". I hope I'm wrong and someone here can straighten me out.
a c 415 G Storage
April 7, 2010 5:12:56 PM

This is totally a guess - I have no experience with the software and I may be way off base... But on a PC this stuff is usually activated using an autorun file. Such a file would be ignored by a DVR, so I wouldn't expect it to be an issue.

But if people are actually reporting that it causes problems then there may be some other thing going on that I haven't heard of. Sounds like it would be a pretty stupid thing for WD to do, though...

Perhaps someone who's used one of these drives can comment.

In the meantime, you can easily avoid these kinds of issues by simply purchasing a bare drive and an external enclosure to put it in.
April 7, 2010 5:30:54 PM

I really appreciate your responses and look forward to any future insight. Do you have a recommendation as to what to purchase for a complete setup? Most of the reviews at amazon are in regard to computer use so you may be correct that for DVR external storage the problem may be nill. At the dbs forum several have had problems with DVR uses. I'm unclear as to the differences between WD's Essential and Elemental series. Maybe the Elemental does not incorporate the "smartware" software. I've asked but no clear answer. I want to pull the trigger but not if I'm going to have problems.
a c 415 G Storage
April 7, 2010 10:49:21 PM

That was just an example, you can find plenty of enclosures if you poke around a bit.
April 7, 2010 11:19:56 PM

sminlal said:
That was just an example, you can find plenty of enclosures if you poke around a bit.


Thank you. You've been a big help.
April 15, 2010 12:29:55 AM

I found the simple answer. I bought a WD Elements 1.5TB. Unlike the Essentials this version has no software to worry about. Works like a charm. Simply activate the USB port with Dish, plug it in and follow the prompts. So far I've transferred 8 episodes of "Life" and several concerts, TV shows, and movies. Great deal for $99.
!