My Hughes HDVR2 Gets Resuscitated

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In October 2003, I bought a Hughes HDVR2 from Weaknees.com. It is a Tivo Series 2 device, which has DirecTV tuners (two of them) built in. I ordered two disks (each 160GB) which at the time, was a large system. Today, they build terabyte (and greater!) systems, so mine is pokey by those standards.

In this post, I discussed getting FiOS service and our first HDTV. We didn’t get rid of the DirecTV at the time, largely because it’s the only place you can get the full NFL Sunday Ticket package. I’m actually watching less football nowadays, so it might eventually go. I also have the full premium package, so I get all of the HBO/Showtime/Cinemax, etc., even though I rarely watch any of them. I don’t have that package on FiOS.

A few weeks back, our DirecTivo (the Hughes) died. It was rebooting itself once a day for weeks, so I knew it wasn’t going to last long, but I had no idea how long. When it died, I went on to the Weaknees forums. I posted about my problem, and an employee of Weaknees conjectured that it was a bad power supply. I responded to a few of his questions, and he then raised his confidence level to nearly 100% that it was a power supply.

Weaknees sells power supply replacements for many models, and mine cost $69 including shipping. I searched the net, and no one else seemed to sell new ones. Most people suggested buying a used machine on EBay, and then pulling out the power supply. I bid on a number of them, but lost all of my attempts. In the end, I ordered the power supply from Weaknees.

It arrived at Zope while we were away. We got home yesterday, and I popped in the new power supply (I had already removed the old one before we left). It worked on the first try, and we now have a working DVR for the DirecTV system again, and we didn’t lose any of the shows that we had previously taped. Very cool, as I am really not handy with this type of stuff, at all!

I don’t intend to do this, only because I am not investing any further in the DirecTV system (even though I’m not close to giving it up just yet), but, once I had it open, I realized how absolutely trivial it would be to pop in two 500GB drives to replace my 160GB ones, and triple my disk space. My only real complaint about the FiOS DVR is that it only has a 320GB disk, and they haven’t (yet) lit up the eSATA port to permit external disks (which they claim they will, one day…).