Here's a list of recent additions to the blog, so you can quickly catch up on updates since you last visited:
Sunday 12th August 2012
Signed off from the site forever with a final blog posting. Fetch TV's official site is dead, meaning the 8320HD is effectively dead as well and, by implication, so is this blog. I'll leave everything intact for a while, but once Tesco stop selling it on their eBay store, there'll be little incentive to keep this site up.
Saturday 7th January 2012
Changed the 8320HD price to £189.50 again since Fetch TV's eBay store has removed all items now. Also added how to use your 8320HD remote to control your TV to the Useful Links page.
Friday 9th December
Boy, was I slow discovering that Fetch TV have an official eBay store - I've hardly ever used eBay, so I completely missed that it opened in February 2011! Even more surprising is the discrepancy in pricing between their eBay store and their own FetchTV site, particularly for the 8000 model, which is now a ridiculously cheap £67.50!
There's also been a Fetch TV update - they've rolled out the smart app for some Panasonic Viera smart TVs. Now where's the next 8320HD firmware update I ask you? There's still bugs to fix and a much-promised-never-delivered new UI to release!
Wednesday 30th November
There's been so little 8320HD news that I ended up posting about Channel 5+1 turning up next week...talk about desperate (both the channel and the posting)!
Thursday 17th November
The rate of updates to both this site and AVForums.com giant thread on the 8320HD has slowed to a crawl in recent months because FetchTV seem to be treading water at the moment. No new models have been announced, no distribution deals to replace their Tesco contract have turned up and this, in turn, has put a stop to firmware updates - the last of which was almost 4 months ago. Still, the AVForums.com thread finally managed to hit part seven recently, so that was worth updating a few links.
Wednesday 28th September
AVForums.com had a posting about FetchTV's beta-testing for the new UI they promised some 18 months ago. I've applied to join their trial (dunno if it's too late - the Twitter post was a week ago and I don't use Twitter) and put up a post about the good news that the new UI is actually finally coming to fruition.
Monday 26th September
Belatedly discovered that the 4.8.05-03 firmware had the same bugs as the now-withdrawn 4.8.04-11 release, so adjusted the latest posting to reflect this.
Yes, I'm back on 4.8.05-02 again before you ask.
Friday 23rd September
Discovered an old/new beta firmware - 4.8.05-03 - that was actually packaged half a day before the current stable 4.8.05-02. Installation of 4.8.05-03 on my 8320HD confirmed that it behaved pretty well identically to the 4.8.05-02 release. Still it's numbered a fraction higher, so some users might want to install it!
Wednesday 21st September
The launch of IPTV channels 110-112 appears to be pretty close, though I suspect the 8320HD needs a firmware update for them to work because channel 112 claims my Smartbox isn't connected to the Net (it is, via wireless). This issue was worth a post tonight because we may be deprived of the three channels for a while if the tardiness of previous firmware updates is anything to go by.
Tueday 6th September
Spotted an article on The Register today that claims there will be three channels with IPTV content launching at the end of this month on Freeview HD. I suspect that the 8320HD won't initially support them, but hopefully FetchTV will bring out a firmware update if it doesn't work.
Friday 2nd September
I thought the FetchTV announcement about being on Panasonic TV and Blu-ray players was a bit yawnsome (I wonder how many other PPV services - probably with better content/prices than FetchTV's - are already on the Panasonic?), it struck me that at least it might bring more money in and therefore encourage FetchTV to finish their new 8320HD UI that we've been frustratingly waiting for. Hence, a post about the press release was worth doing.
Sunday 14th August
Lost most of a recording this week thanks to a very intrusive "daily maintenance" reboot that my 8320HD is now doing. I've lodged a bug with Fetch TV about it and it also warranted a posting here.
Monday 25th July
Discovered a nasty simultaneous recording bug over the weekend that some other AVForums.com users have also spotted, so it warranted a post here. Impressively, after reporting the bug to Fetch TV, they've sent me a new firmware URL to try out (4.8.05-02) which seems to have fixed the simultaneous recording bug from what I can see. Fetch TV then decided to withdraw the 4.8.04-11 "stable" release (lasted 4 days!) and replace it with this new 4.8.05-02 relealse.
Sunday 24th July
Added a post about the 8320HD selling instore at Tesco for only £95 now - good luck finding one though! Updated the Rumour Mill page to take out stuff about the N7000/N8000 boxes (not really directly relevant to 8320HD owners) and to add that a new model might turn up around the same time as the new 8320HD UI we've been promised for soooo long now.
Friday 22nd July
Fetch TV have finally released their latest stable firmware after more than 5 months had elapsed since the previous one (by far the longest gap between stable releases, sadly). It is actually identical the "sixth beta" - I checksummed the stable zip file and it matched the "sixth beta", so we really only had 5 betas after all. Seems to work well, even if some users are having problems resuming playback on recordings they stopped watching half way through (my box is fine with this using the new stable firmware).
Tuesday 19th July
The 6th leaked beta firmware arrived today on AVForums.com and I'll be checking it out tonight.
Saturday 16th July
At least the 5th leaked beta firmware turned up in AVForums.com and I was shocked to see that no new major bugs have been added for once in a beta release. What's more, they've got Sky Go (was Sky Player) working again and, best of all, the remote control repeating bug remains vanquished. I'll keep this beta on for a while to see if any nasties turn up, but it's looking actually quite good so far.
Saturday 9th July
FetchTV just won an ISPA Award for "Best Over-The-Top TV" - I guess the OTT nature of its bugs make it well-deserved :) Worthy of a post just to ridicule its third award of the year.
Friday 1st July
Another beta URL was leaked by a user on AVForums.com - it's the fourth consecutive beta (a record of course), which makes you wonder if Fetch TV aren't confident about releasing any of these betas as "stable" releases. Hardly surprising since they seem to be introducing new bugs faster than they are fixing the old ones! I've installed the beta and it's a cautious thumbs up - live pause is working again and the remote control repeat bug seems to have been cured. Sky Player login is still bust apparently, not that I care about that.
Thursday 23rd June
I belatedly checked AVForums.com tonight and a user had posted the URL to the latest beta firmware. It apparently improves some things (possibly the remote control repeating bug at last?) and wrecks others (particularly Sky Player, which is such a pile of junk that I wouldn't even use it if I had a normal Sky sub!). This warranted a new post of course and an update to the Latest Firmware page.
Tuesday 7th June
We knew it was coming and today was indeed the day that Tesco Direct discontinued the 8320HD. My suspicion is that FetchTV might decide to bring out a new model later this year (bigger hard drive, revised remote, new UI), but they will need to strike some good retail deals to match the Tesco Direct one you suspect.
Monday 6th June
Added the earliest beta firmware anyone knows about to the Latest Firmware page - namely 4.7.52-09 issued in September 2010. Interestingly, this makes April 2011 the only month that I've yet to dig up a beta or stable firmware release for the 8320HD, which makes me suspect that a beta for April 2011 is indeed out there somewhere. It got me intrigued enough to do both some targeted Google searches and basic incremental URL guessing - this netted quite a lot more firmware releases that I've put on the Latest Firmware site now.
Sunday 5th June
Another day and another beta firmware popped up, this time a much more recent 4.08.04-03 release from 27th May. However, it's still buggy as hell, with the GUIDE button and pause live TV not working most of the time. Fetch TV do, however, seemed to have mostly got on top of the remote control repeat bug, so if they can sort out the new bugs they've added and actually fix FF/REW too (still getting repeated video slats on this latest beta), then we might have a decent next stable release.
Saturday 4th June
Because beta releases normally are in a beta tree and come with a random 10 hex digit suffix to try to "hide" the zip file from people trying to guess its name, I didn't think to look in the stable ("upgrade") tree for beta releases. However, chatter on AVForums.com suggested there were betas floating around in the stable tree, so I experimented with version guesses and, sure enough, a beta release numbered 4.8.03-06 was downloadable.
I installed 4.8.03-06 on my 8320HD box, but it really didn't fix anything and managed to mostly break the GUIDE button (yes, you can use "0" as an alternative button), so I downgraded back to the 4.8.03-01 stable release. In theory, a later beta numbered 4.8.04-03 was also in the stable tree, but it was only 10% of the size and therefore an unpackable zip file. Still, it was worth a new posting on the site about the "latest" beta firmware even if, strictly speaking, it isn't really that.
Monday 30th May
Added a post about an AVForums.com tip about how to downgrade firmware (useful enough to go into the Hints and Tips page too). Because you can now downgrade firmware, I've added a list of all the known beta and stable firmware releases on the Latest Firmware page.
Saturday 21st May
I don't know how they managed it (free 8320HD's to the judges...er, maybe not, that would have lost them the awards!), but FetchTV actually managed to win two TV awards this month. I was so surprised considering the lacklustre PPV service and the dog slow rate at which quite serious 8320HD bugs are fixed, that I thought it warranted its own posting.
Wednesday 4th May
Tesco Direct have thrown in a (second) free HDMI cable with the 8320HD now and I noticed my sister has no recording device at all for her TV, so I've not only added a posting about the free cable, but also ordered her an 8320HD for her birthday. I hate the repeating remote control button bug so much - and I think she would too - that I'm reluctant to give her the box until a software update comes out to fix it. I hope Fetch TV aren't holding updates until their new UI comes out - I'd rather just have that single bug fixed with a release this month, rather than have to wait many months.
Tuesday 12th April
Fetch TV's yawnsome offer of an 8320HD for £200.50 delivered (with £30 of "free" movies) to promote their new eBay store just about warranted a new post, even though the Tesco Direct "while stocks last" deal is still clearly better.
Sunday 3rd April
Added more updates to the Tesco Direct price drop post - looks like they're going to stop stocking it very soon and there's some additional checkout codes you can use. These bring it down to £145 - including delivery - along with a possible 800 Clubcard points in total (making it a theoretical £137 - a stunning price!).
Monday 28th March
In a somewhat stunning move (and not even marked as a special offer!), Tesco Direct have dropped the price of the 8320HD to £155 (including delivery) - the second time they've dropped its price this month. Assuming that the lack of auto-padding and the annoyingly repeated remote control commands are fixed in the next firmware release, this could easily become the best value for money box of its type on the market.
Thursday 24th March
Added a new posting including couple of links to articles about the long-overdue new 8320HD UI - I think we'll all be poor-sighted OAPs by the time they finally launch it!
Saturday 5th March
Added yet another Tesco Direct posting - this time, they've knocked £20 off the price to bring it down to their cheapest yet (£185 including delivery). Added the sixth thread page link for the AVForums.com endless Smartbox discussion.
Sunday 13th February
Updated my 8320HD to the latest stable firmware release and actually did it via my wireless connection instead of the usual USB key for a change. I've added a post about the upgrade and updated the Latest Firmware page as usual. Tesco Direct have resumed selling the 8320HD, so that warranted another post, although I was half-expecting it to price-match Fetch TV's lower price, but Tesco just brought it back at the old price.
Saturday 5th February
Updated the firmware page to include details on the latest beta release and added a posting to match it. Also added the "repeats the last remote control button press" bug to the appropriate page - this bug is have been driving me mad recently!
Friday 21st January
Well, Tesco have unceremoniously dumped the 8320HD this month and it's no longer for sale on their Tesco Direct site. It wasn't a shock really (the ludicrously buggy firmware caused wave after wave of returns) and I've created a new post to mark its demise as its main distributor. I doubt Fetch TV will sell many direct from their site, so this probably marks the beginning of the end for the box. A shame because the hardware is very good, only let down by shoddy firmware.
Tuesday 11th January
Adjusted prices in the Links tab (added Fetch TV's £20-discounted page and corrected the new price of the replacement remote control). Removed reference to the one month of free Sky Player since that offer finished at the end of 2010. Got home tonight to the sound of loud continuous clicking (at a rate of 2 clicks a second) coming through the TV connected to my Smartbox. After switching from HDMI to Antenna and back to HDMI on the TV's input menu, the clicking stopped, suggesting some sort of HDMI negotiation bug in the Smartbox firmware.
Tuesday 4th January
There's been a price update on the 8320HD at Fetch TV because of today's VAT increase. It's now £189.50 delivered using the £20-off discount page and £4.50 48-hour delivery. Strangely, Tesco remain stuck at £205 delivered for the moment.
Saturday 1st January 2011
Started the New Year with a new wishlist entry about the poor media centre experience on the 8320HD and how it should be improved. I may well be getting an Android work mobile phone when I go back to work next week, so I also added a wishlist entry for an Android version of the free iPhone app to do Remote Recording.
Tuesday 21st December 2010
Released 1.0 (stable) of remrecord and spent most of my time documenting the Cygwin installation process on Windows (setting up a cron job was a pain!). New features include being able to "prefer" SD vs. HD simulcasts, ignoring repeats by default (gets flummoxed by "Have I Got A Bit More News For You" so I added a -i option to include repeats), having a simple Web throttle if a lot of Fetch TV requests are made and being to search with comma-separated ranges at the banned channel and numbered programme selection prompts. Added a posting about Fetch TV knocking more than £19 off the delivered price compared to Tesco (it's an offer e-mailed to me that ends on 31st Dec 2010).
Friday 17th December
Updated the Feature Wishlist page with a couple of new feature wishes, plus revised some of the old wishes because of the new firmware that was released. Removed references to the Fetch TV competition to win an 8320HD, because it expired yesterday.
Thursday 16th December
At long last, the 4.8.01-11 "stable" firmware was released, so I edited the old beta firmware posting and updated the Latest Firmware and Known 8320HD Bugs pages.
Tuesday 14th December
Released 0.5 (beta) of remrecord. Sadly, I wasn't able to easily work around the issue of the buggy Fetch TV search, but I did manage to lodge a ticket with Fetch TV about it. Updated the latest firmware page to indicate that you can temporarily disable timeshifting if you are on a recent beta firmware release. Fetch TV gave me the latest beta firmware (4.8.01-09) URL as a response to a ticket I'd logged about the picture search FF hang/reboot - needless to say, it didn't me long to post up about the new firmware!
Monday 13th December
Not being back to work until 5th January got me cracking on the remrecord 0.5 (beta) release and I've updated the Remrecord Tool page with what I've done so far. One more issue left and it'll be released - hopefully tomorrow as promised. This will be first release I'll be truly proud of - providing even more features not available on the iPhone or Web versions of Remote Recording and I'll be cron'ing it up for the first time on my home machine, it'll be that good :-) Credit to K T Tunstall's Fade Like A Shadow on auto-repeat for driving a big coding session today!
Sunday 12th December
Added a mention of Elephant's Dream (an 11-minute mini-movie made entirely by open source tools) in the Hints & Tips section. It's available as a free HD download in the Fetch TV PPV service - the only free download I could spot in there in fact (maybe Fetch TV should do some more free stuff?!).
Saturday 11th December
Release 0.4 (alpha) of remrecord - managed to grab repeat or HD simulcast programmes, added retries if the Remote Recording or programme title search fails and finally have the results in ascending date order.
Sunday 5th December
Fed up with the lack of new stable firmware from Fetch TV, I've put the beta firmware details in a more prominent position now (in the Latest Firmware page) and also posted up about it. My hand was forced a bit early by an AVForums.com user, who actually posted a direct link to the beta firmware.
It's ridiculous that a horribly buggy firmware release has existed for 2 months with no fixes - people are still returning their 8320HD's as "faulty" to Tesco's because of it! BTW, the actual beta .zip file isn't directly linked to avoid my blog page appearing in Fetch TV's Web logs - sneaky, eh? :-)
Thursday 2nd December
Released 0.3 (alpha) of remrecord - fixed the totally broken proxy support and finally supported multiple programmes to search for (which you can put in the config file to be the default searches if you don't specify any on the command line).
Wednesday 1st December
Released 0.2 (alpha) of remrecord - some settings have moved into a per-user config file and several new command-line options have been added, particularly the -s flag (match on sub-strings rather than exactly match a programme title).
Tuesday 30th November
Released 0.1 (alpha) of the remrecord script. It's totally interactive and only allows one search term at a time, but I'm aiming to at least see if people can run it OK.
Monday 29th November
I was in the finishing straight last night for coding the remrecord script, only to hit a multi-episode issue (mainly for soaps). The stupid Fetch TV listings search only lists the next episode and adds a link at the bottom of the description to all the episodes for the next week. It meant I've frantically had to extend the script, which I've nearly done. I've updated the Remrecord page to mention that I've now done all but this episode fix for the script. I'm hoping this last-minute hitch doesn't delay the first alpha - it's going to be touch and go now as to whether I can make the deadline (you might find it appear at 11.59pm tonight...!).
Friday 26th November
Added a new Remrecord Tool page that details my progress to providing a script that can automate remote recordings on your 8320HD (i.e. you don't have to use the sluggish and featureless TV listings Web site).
Thursday 25th November
Now that an AVForums.com member ("pig") has revealed the make/model of 8320HD internal hard drive, I moved that info from the Rumour Mill to the Hints and Tips section and added links to the 320GB and 500GB versions of the drive on Ebuyer. Sadly, I don't see a 1TB "AV" version of the drive though. Added a post bemoaning the lack of new firmware - it's now been 7 weeks since the last release and the 8320HD still has major stability issues. I've lost count of how many times my 8320HD has crashed whilst wandering around the UI with the remote control.
Tuesday 23rd November
Removed all traces of the now-closed What's On TV competition to win an 8320HD and £100 of Fetch TV credit. There's still the Fetch TV competition going of course - that doesn't close until next month.
Monday 22nd November
Added a small reminder post that today's the last day of the What's On TV 8320HD competition.
Friday 19th November
Added a post that pointed to a new poll from an AVForums.com user asking how often people paid for Fetch TV content (PPV movies etc.). I never have - even for the free movie download you get - because it's DRM'ed up the wazoo.
Thursday 18th November
A poster on AVForums.com was told to send the setup of their 8320HD box back to Fetch TV via a "hidden" menu option (Menu -> Diagnostics -> Smartbox Info -> hold down green button), so I've added this to the Hints & Tips section.
Friday 12th November
I got my first advance notification of Freeview channel changes this week on my 8320HD (tells me to retune on Monday night), so I've added a posting about it. It's a shame they couldn't do the same when BBC One HD launched, but at least this re-tune notification should catch all those laggards who didn't re-tune last week for the new channel.
I've adjusted the Tesco price for the 8320HD - the next day free delivery offer has finished, so if you order for home delivery, it's now £205/410 Clubcard points, though some bigger Tesco stores do a "reserve and collect" - my local one doesn't - that will save you the £5 delivery charge.
Tuesday 9th November
Could the 8320HD be violating the GPL? I posted up a page to discuss this. I've now open up comments on all blog posts, so let the spamming begin!
Sunday 7th November
Finally enabled the free month of Sky Sports/Entertainment on my 8320HD and I'm not that impressed with the service, so I've posted up about its shortcomings. The main issue is that for a below-average picture quality (their "high" quality looks worse than a typical SD channel!) that isn't even recordable, £34.50 a month for some sports and poor entertainment channels is nothing short of a total rip-off. That price is an absolute disgrace for the service they're providing - it's almost three times the price of a TV licence (which has been price-frozen for 6 years, unlike Sky's prices) and yet offers about 10% of the service.
Saturday 6th November
Added a link to the free iPhone remote recording app that FetchTV released a while back (and have updated recently to version 1.2). No sign of an Android version though, which is a pretty major omission nowadays, especially since Sky have a free remote recording Android app for their Sky+ and Sky HD boxes.
Thursday 4th November
Added a rumour (in the sense that no-one's sure exactly what they're doing) about IP Vision/Fetch TV being able to remotely access your 8320HD and change its config, upgrade its firmware and who knows what else. The remote config change "feature" was already confirmed by an AVForums.com user who contacted Fetch TV and they did indeed "fix" their box remotely. The fact that IP Vision actually brag about this remote access to your box on their corporate Web site lends credence to this frankly scary story.
Wednesday 3rd November
Added a link to a "sister" wiki Down Under - Telstra flog a T-Box that appears to be closer to a Netgem N8000 than the Technika 8320HD and someone's set up a wiki about it. A user on AVforums.com just picked up their 8320HD from Tesco at a reduced yellow sticker price of £160 - I added this to the top of the rumours page because it could signal that Tesco's 8320HD distribution deal may be coming to an end soon.
Added a new posting about the BBC One launch - which the 8320HD totally ignored, requiring a user-instigated full re-tune - and how they've put a highly irritating permanent logo in the top left of the new channel :-( Also added the automatic detection of new Freeview channels as a feature wish. Complied with an AVForum.com user's bemusing and somewhat unusual request to remove their posting name from the site (I removed any links to their postings too, otherwise it would obviously be too easy to identify them).
Tuesday 2nd November
An AVForums.com member, Kargo, appears to be a beta-tester for the next 8320HD release, so I added this to the rumours section. They've effectively confirmed that Fetch TV are beta-testing the next firmware release now, so hopefully we'll see a new release soon. To be honest, it's a shock Fetch TV even have a beta-test programme, considering how buggy their firmware releases have been! Added a general bug about time zone change handling (including a reference to yet another time zone issue discovered by an AVforums.com member) to complement my recent time zone postings.
Sunday 31st October
Yep, it's a Hallowe'en horror ending to my timezone recording experiment - the 8320HD pretty well failed dismally to handle a recording that crossed the time zone change this morning. It was such a bad failure that I decided to do a new posting about it.
Friday 29th October
Nice to actually remove a bug - the failure to schedule Remote Recordings whilst in standby - from the list for a change. After reporting the bug to Fetch TV and they stating they couldn't reproduce it, I tried putting the box into standby again and I then remote scheduled two overnight programmes to record. Sure enough, they weren't scheduled or recorded as I suspected, but it also finally dawned on me that the box's wireless connection wasn't working when I brought it out of standby!
Yep, the flaky wireless bug that I documented earlier this week was the reason remote recording scheduling wasn't working in standby - the wireless had disconnected (idle or lease timeout?) and couldn't auto-reconnect either. I've asked Fetch TV to close the ticket on this one, though I'll be opening up a new one about the flaky wireless soon.
Added two new bugs - Series Link is broken (it mostly acts as a weekly timer, which is not how it's supposed to) and the Todo List (yellow button on recordings schedule page) often misses out programmes that are in the main recordings schedule and are indeed <7 days away. Added tip about immediately cancelling your "subscription" once you've signed up for your free month of Sky Player - I'm intending to subscribe during the morning of Sunday 7th November to maxmise the number of decent Sky Sports live football matches during my free month.
It took me almost a week to discover it, but HotUKDeals' competition section had a posting about What's On TV magazine offering an 8320HD and £100 of Fetch TV credit (I doubt I'd care much about the latter - who wants to watch DRM'ed-to-the-hilt stuff?), so I decided to do a full posting about it. And, yes, I've entered the competition, even though I've already got an 8320HD. Fetch TV themselves have a similar competition that I also entered, but strangely they're only offering £50 credit. Added a link to the dire Fetch TV twitter feed, which seems to be horribly over-repetitive from what I can see.
Thursday 28th October
Fetch TV responded to my bug report about standby and low power modes not waking up to check for Remote Recording requests to add to its recording schedules (yes, I had the check frequency set to non-disabled in the prefs - every hour in my case). Sadly, they couldn't reproduce the bug, so I'll have to experiment by putiing the box into a "non-on" mode, go to my PC and set a couple of overnight recordings remotely and then check it in the morning. During waking hours, the box is on all the time, so I can only try this out overnight.
Needless to say, Fetch TV's response allowed me to post a new ticket, so I went for the inability to disable timeshifting (leaving your hard drive constantly writing the live TV feed if you leave your box on 24x7 like I do) as the next issue (it's been in the Feature Wishlist of this site for a while). Fetch TV's response to this was a bit inadequate - the only way timeshifting ever seems to get (temporarily) disabled is after 4 hours of remote control inactivity, at which point a dialogue box appears and if you do nothing, it turns off timeshifting until a timeshift-related remote control button (e.g. pause) is pressed.
Not what I was after - I want timeshifting permanently disabled and only to be temporarily used if I press the pause key (and even then, it should revert to be being disabled once I catch up with live TV again). As it stands, the SATA drive is getting a 24x7 battering because I don't want any "timeouts" to put stuff into standby - I need them to be scheduled standbys (I'll be filing that one next, whenever someone from Fetch TV responds to one of my 2 open tickets...). Added a bug about some recordings (mine was from a channel Five movie) producing repeated horizontal "slats" of video from half-way down the screen to the bottom during picture search fast fowarding.
Added a feature wish from a new "follower" (Andrew), who posted up wanting some sort of folder system on his 8320HD. It's something I too think is needed and the only reason I haven't posted it up is that UK TV is so bad, I haven't filled even one screenful of the recordings list yet (in fact, it's now currently blank!). Added a tip from nosimpler on AVForums.com about the TV button returning you to live TV after you've paused (pause button) and resumed (play button), though I can't see why a second press of play couldn't do that too...
Wednesday 27th October
After a week of waiting for a response about the audio breaking up or disappearing if you catch up to a live recording point during chase playback, FetchTV finally added info to the ticket that they can reproduce the problem and will look to fix it in a future firmware release. This freed up an open ticket for me to complain that only 2 open tickets are allowed on their ticketing system (and, yes, I'm jammed with 2 open tickets again because of that, oh the irony of it). I've asked if the limit can be raised to 5 open tickets per user (update: they closed this ticket without assigning it or commenting on it, so I've complained about that and re-opened it again!). Added a new non-commentable post about the forthcoming timezone change and BBC One HD launch.
Tuesday 26th October
Added a link to the Pocket-lint review that turned up on the Web yesterday. It looks like they used the latest firmware and, like most people, found some bugs in it, so the rating of 7 out of 10 seems fair to me. The review is full of UI pictures, so check it out to see what it looks like. Added a tip about holding down the INFO button for 2-3 seconds in the EPG to "force" it to be populated more quickly - a shame this isn't in the Sep 2010 Full User Guide, despite being an August 2010 Fetch TV FAQ posting. Added a complaint about the flaky wireless connectivity to the bugs section. Added a link about getting one month of Sky Player for free - you get a promo code on a leaflet (that I nearly threw away) that comes with the 8320HD.
Monday 25th October
Added a couple of horribly grainy pictures (of the rear of my 8320HD and the DIN to SCART cable shipped with the box) to the images page. I'm wondering what the best way is to get decent screenshots of the UI - maybe using the DIN to SCART to my analogue hard disk recorder that can write its recordings to DVD (play the DVD recording back on the PC, pause and then screengrab). Seems the easiest way to me, even if it won't be pixel perfect. Added a link to the Quick Start Guide PDF in the links section, even if the QSG has a bad URL for the Full User Guide in it! Added a couple of rumours about radio capability coming to the 8320HD's iPlayer and that John Lewis sold Smartboxes in the recent past, albeit not the 8320HD model I suspect. Also threw in that Carphone Warehouse seemed to have inked a deal for Smartboxes, but they aren't selling them as far as I know.
Sunday 24th October
Tried several DLNA/UPnP media server programs on my Fedora 13 box before settling on MediaTomb, which is now listed in the Hints & Tips section and also works on Mac OS X. Finally, non-Windows users get to play stuff from their PC on their 8320HD! Part 5 of the massive AVForums.com thread started today - will it ever end? Edited the page footer to make people sure people know it's an unofficial blog.
Saturday 23rd October
Add this What's New page. Documented a catastrophic bug (and made a posting) about overlapping recordings - it's such a bad bug, I'll be avoiding simultaneous recordings from now on until it's fixed. Added a tip about fixing an incorrect clock on the box from a user @ AVForums.com. Added an 8320HD Images page with a picture of the box and remote first, along with comments on both. Added the bug I posted a few days ago to AVForums.com about chase playback of a current live scheduled recording losing or having choppy audio when catching up to the current live recording point via picture-search fast forward. Noted which bugs I'd reported to Fetch TV support.
Added a link posted by Denis Martindale to the Radio and Telly UK forums' Netgeam/8320HD sub-forum. Denis also posted a link to the Fetch TV support page, which isn't that great except it does have the helpdesk phone number and helpdesk opening times. I've been fiddling with the template design of the site, but not finding the "right stuff" yet, so keep reverting it to the red look-and-feel...
Friday 22nd October
Added a bug about 30x (or faster) picture search fast-forwarding freezing the picture or even crashing the box. Added several tips and a link from Denis Martindale that he commented on in the begging post.
Thursday 21st October 2010
Launched this blog since the AVforums.com world-record thread was getting unmanageable and I find sitcky posts awkward. I want this to primarily be an information site rather than a free-for-all discussion site, so it's fairly tightly controlled and offers a different experience from the AVforums.com massive thread.