Review: Optibox Anaconda HD FTA Receiver

PopcornNMore

SatelliteGuys Pro
Dear POPCORN N MORE,

Have you heard whether Optibox plans to market a receiver that displays 4:2:2?

I, too, was very favorably impressed by your Optibox's graphics. They beat those of my Pansat 9200HD. I hope that future programmatic revisions break "the 81% barrier." When those revisions are announced, will you be able to install them in your new receiver?

You did a very nice job with your review.

Gordon
Thank you Gordon. Optibox is aware of the 81% problem and a fix should be available soon. Once available a simple firmware upgrade via a USB flash drive takes only a few minutes.
 

PopcornNMore

SatelliteGuys Pro
I liked the built in editor, works well enough that you don't really need an external editor unless you were doing a large edit session. The manual pids worked well too.

Can you get SD from the av jacks and hdmi 1080i simultaneously? The Openbox can do this, the Gekko could not and was possible to get locked out.
I've been using the editor tonight and really like it. I haven't tried using both outputs, but will do so and will let you know the result.
 

Gordon Corbett

SatelliteGuys Family
Thank you Gordon. Optibox is aware of the 81% problem and a fix should be available soon. Once available a simple firmware upgrade via a USB flash drive takes only a few minutes.
Dear POPCORN N MORE,

Thanks for replying so promptly.

Have you heard whether Optibox will make a receiver that includes 4:2:2? Where could I learn what Optibox's customer service number is? I could call them and ask them directly.

Thanks.

Gordon
 

SatelliteAV

SatelliteGuys Master
Lifetime Supporter
Gordon,

The STi 71110 is a basic chipset designed for the consumer STB market. It does not support 4:2:2 profile.

Based on the target market for this receiver, I highly doubt that a daughter board would be made available to add 4:2:2 support.
 

PopcornNMore

SatelliteGuys Pro
Pixl, I read your review of the Gekko on the other forum. I'm SatelliteGuy on there. :rolleyes:

In your review you said the blind scan problem was fixed. I thought the Gekko and Anaconda have the same firmware?
 

Pixl

Senior Member
Pub Member / Supporter
I had a lot of trouble with the blind scan right out of the box. EB had me down load a newer version than even he had from a site in the Netherlands. It worked fine after that. I think it ended in -31 instead of -29 but I'm at work right now and info is at home.
 

Jim S.

When someone asks you if you're a god, you say yes
Lifetime Supporter
The version on EB's review Gekko is 2.10.31, yes. But I'm still having problems with the blind scan. It only hangs once in a while, but more often, it'll zoom through a satellite almost instantly, finding nothing, when I know my aim is good and there are active transponders. After that, it's no good anymore til I pull the plug. Sometimes I'll be able to scan for an hour or so before the problem manifests, other times, I'll only get one or two scans done and then it'll start.
 

brentb636

SatelliteGuys Pro
Pulling the plug was common with older receivers that didn't have much memory. The Fortec NA Classic comes to mind. Blind scanning used up a lot of system memory, and then it had to be power cycled to get contiguous ram back. Probably the same thing is happening here, with a really bad blindscan algorithm messing up system resources. :(
 

Jim S.

When someone asks you if you're a god, you say yes
Lifetime Supporter
I think the Gekko is advertised as having 256MB. Pixl says he opened it and it has 2GB! I was bothered by the discrepancy, so I logged into it and the "free" command reports a little under 100MB total RAM. I think it's using some for a ramdisk or two, but I didn't look at how much. I don't know where the rest of the 2GB is.
 

Jim S.

When someone asks you if you're a god, you say yes
Lifetime Supporter
With all due respect to Pixl, I believe he mis-read the spec sheet for the RAM. By my reading, it's 2 gigaBITS, or 256MB.
 

PopcornNMore

SatelliteGuys Pro
The version on EB's review Gekko is 2.10.31, yes. But I'm still having problems with the blind scan. It only hangs once in a while, but more often, it'll zoom through a satellite almost instantly, finding nothing, when I know my aim is good and there are active transponders. After that, it's no good anymore til I pull the plug. Sometimes I'll be able to scan for an hour or so before the problem manifests, other times, I'll only get one or two scans done and then it'll start.
This is exactly what happens with my Anaconda.
 

Pixl

Senior Member
Pub Member / Supporter
With all due respect to Pixl, I believe he mis-read the spec sheet for the RAM. By my reading, it's 2 gigabytes, or 256MB.
Maybe I'm mis understanding some thing. The spec sheet for the Hynix H5PS1G63EFR says 1 GB. There are two chips right next to the main processor for a total of 2 GB. I know, there is a huge difference in the published specs of 256 MB, but not the smaller difference between giga bits and giga bytes.



.
 
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Jim S.

When someone asks you if you're a god, you say yes
Lifetime Supporter
The spec sheet I looked at says 1Gb, small "b". I'm interpreting that to mean bits instead of bytes. So you'd have 2G/8 = 1/4 G = 256M bytes.
 

digiblur

SatelliteGuys Master
Most Ram spec sheets I have seen are in Gigabit and megabits.

Sent from my C64 w/Epyx FastLoad Cartridge
 

Gordon Corbett

SatelliteGuys Family
This is exactly what happens with my Anaconda.
Dear POPCORN N MORE,

When you wrote your last message concerning the Optibox Anaconda, you were replying to Jim S.'s report that his Gekko sometimes skims through a transponder without finding anything. You said that the same was true of your own Anaconda. My guess is that, given its erratic scanning and the 81 per cent barrier, your overall rating of the Anaconda may have declined a bit since you wrote your first very-well-done review messages.

Has your rating in fact declined? Do you believe that Optibox will fix the faults detected by our fellow Forum'ers and you? If so, do you have any idea when they will offer the improved program?

Thanks.

Gordon
 
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PopcornNMore

SatelliteGuys Pro
Dear POPCORN N MORE,

When you wrote your last message concerning the Optibox Anaconda, you were replying to Jim S.'s report that his Gekko sometimes skims through a transponder without finding anything. You said that the same was true of your own Anaconda. My guess is that, given its erratic scanning and the 81 per cent barrier, your overall rating of the Anaconda may have declined a bit since you wrote your first very-well-done review messages.

Has your rating in fact declined? Do you believe that Optibox will fix the faults detected by our fellow Forum'ers and you? If so, do you have any idea when they will offer the improved program?

Thanks.

Gordon
My rating of the Anaconda has not declined, in fact the more I use it the more features I discover. I rate it higher than my Openbox S9 (which I love) due to the receivers video quality and onscreen graphics. Once the blind scan is corrected this will be an awesome receiver. Myself and other users are testing to see what exactly causes the blind scan to fail ocassionally. Perhaps it a low or high frequency limit, detection of a digicipher II signal, does it fail on both C and KU band, etc. Once we find the problem it can be corrected more easily by the programmers.

The Anaconda has been recording "The Honeymooners" every night on MeTV for the past week without any problems and playback has been flawless. You can even "bookmark" certain scenes to skip to upon playback.
 

PopcornNMore

SatelliteGuys Pro
After reading a post on another forum, I believe I discovered the problem to the Anaconda's blind scan problem. I believe it is because I have an Ecoda 22KHz switch installed within my system. This would also explain the message "L-Band of Universal LNB with Horizontal Polarity" that appears before the scanning freezes at 81.2%. I believe it sees the Ecoda 22KHz switch and "thinks" I have an universal LNB installed when in fact I'm using a standard LNB.

Tonight, I'm going to perform several blind scans having the Ecoda 22KHz switch removed from the system to see if the problem still occurs and possibly if the scan time is reduced. If successful Optibox could then correct the problem within firmware and I could switch to a diseqc switch until new firmware is released.

This would also explain why some Anaconda owners have no problems and some do.
 

Jim S.

When someone asks you if you're a god, you say yes
Lifetime Supporter
I can't see how it could have anything to do with either a universal LNB or a 22k switch. I changed to a standard LNB, no switches of any kind, for testing, and it still screws up in exactly the same way.
 

PopcornNMore

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jim, last night I removed the Ecoda 22KHz switch and performed 7-9 blind scans and the "L-Band of Universal LNB with Horizontal Polarity" message didn't appear once. I'm going to continue testing without the Ecoda 22KHz switch until I'm convinced the problem no longer occurs.
 
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