VOOM STB FAQ (Motorola DSR-550): Post-VOOM Edition

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VOOM Set-Top Box (Motorola DSR-550)
Frequently Asked Questions

(Post-VOOM Edition. Last updated on December 4, 2005)
<a href="#Q0-1">About this FAQ</a>

<a href="#Q1-1">General Questions</a>
<a href="#Q1-1">What is VOOM STB (IRD)?</a>
<a href="#Q1-2">If I buy a DSR-550 box from someone, can I use it as an OTA TV receiver?</a>
<a href="#Q1-3">What are the STB dimensions?</a>
<a href="#Q1-4">How many tuners does the STB have?</a>
<a href="#Q1-5">Does VOOM STB support MPEG-2, MPEG-4 or WMV9 encoding?</a>
<a href="#Q1-6">Is VOOM STB upgradeable?</a>​
<a href="#Q2-1">Video/Audio Hookup</a>
<a href="#Q2-1">Which input should the OTA antenna be connected to?</a>
<a href="#Q2-2">Which video/audio outputs does the STB have?</a>
<a href="#Q2-3">Which outputs should I use?</a>
<a href="#Q2-4">What type of DVI cable do I need?</a>
<a href="#Q2-5">Is HDCP enabled through DVI? Does this mean that component is downrezed?</a>
<a href="#Q2-6">Can I connect multiple TVs/VCRs/DVRs to one STB?</a>
<a href="#Q2-7">Which video resolutions does the STB support?</a>
<a href="#Q2-8">How do I switch the video resolution? Where is that "Red Button"?</a>
<a href="#Q2-9">Which video resolution should I choose?</a>
<a href="#Q2-10">Can I watch HD channels on an SDTV set?</a>​
<a href="#Q3-1">Remote</a>
<a href="#Q3-1">How do I programming my VOOM remote for my TV set and/or VCR?</a>
<a href="#Q3-2">Can I use a different remote with VOOM?</a>
<a href="#Q3-3">Does the STB have discrete On/Off codes?</a>
<a href="#Q3-4">Does the Page button work correctly?</a>
<a href="#Q3-5">Is there an Exit button to exit from any menu?</a>
<a href="#Q3-6">Did Voom offer an RF/UHF remote?</a>​
<a href="#Q4-1">Local OTA Channels</a>
<a href="#Q4-1">Did VOOM deliver local channels via satellite?</a>
<a href="#Q4-2">Which local channels will I be able to receive?</a>
<a href="#Q4-3">Can I tune to channels that are not listed in my channel map?</a>
<a href="#Q4-4">Does the STB support multiple maps (multiple DMAs)?</a>​
<a href="#Q5-1">On-Screen Program Guide</a>
<a href="#Q5-1">Does the Program Guide show OTA listings?</a>
<a href="#Q5-7">How do I create a list of Favorite channels?</a>​
<a href="#Q6-1">The Surf Bar</a>
<a href="#Q6-1">What is the Surf Bar?</a>
<a href="#Q6-2">How do I select a program with the Surf Bar?</a>
<a href="#Q6-3">Can I use the Surf Bar to browse through the Favorites list?</a>
<a href="#Q6-4">The Surf Bar is too small on SD channels. Can I make it bigger?</a>​
<a href="#Q8-1">STB Software</a>
<a href="#Q8-1">What is the STB Software?</a>
<a href="#Q8-2">Which software version do I have?</a>
<a href="#Q8-3">How do I update the software?</a>​
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=66550#Q9-1">STB Configuration</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=66550#Q9-1">Where do I change system settings?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=66550#Q9-2">What are these Audio Compression settings for?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=66550#Q9-3">How do I check the signal strength?</a>​
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=68437#Q10-1">Telephone Line Connection</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=68437#Q10-1">Do I have to connect my STB to a telephone line?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=68437#Q10-2">What is the phone connection for?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=68437#Q10-3">Were the software updates done over the phone?</a>​
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-1">Troubleshooting</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-1">My STB has locked up / got stuck on a channel. How do I reboot?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-2">The picture quality doesn't seem to be HD.</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-3">I am not getting any local (OTA) channels at all.</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-4">I am getting some local channels but not all of them.</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-5">I am getting a lot of pixilation and the picture is breaking up.</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-7">Occasionally I get no sound or no picture after switching channels.</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-8">Occasionally I see a white spot (stuck pixels) on the screen.</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-9">I get white snow screen (or dark screen) for a couple of seconds when switching channels.</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-11">Where can I find the list of known bugs in the STB software?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83024#Q12-12">The box is locked with a PIN code? What do I do?</a>​
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83025#Q13-1">Hidden "System Configuration" Menu</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83025#Q13-1">How do I access the Service Menu?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83025#Q13-2">What does the Factory Reset do?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83025#Q13-3">Will the Factory Reset help me get missing OTA channels?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83025#Q13-4">What are possible side-effects of the Factory Reset?</a>
<a href="http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?p=83025#Q13-5">Are there any other hidden menus or screens?</a>​
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VOOM STB FAQ: About This FAQ

<a name="Q0-1"></a>This FAQ was originally created back in May 2004 when DSR-550 was the main and the only HD receiver offered by VOOM. VOOM as a satellite company is now gone. VOOM Originals HD channels are now available through Dish Network and hopfully through other satellite and cable operators in the near future. The DSR-550 box can no longer be used for satellite channel reception. However, it still can be used a standalone ATSC over-the-air tuner, so I hope, this revised version of the FAQ will be helpful for some.

If you have a question that is not answered, please post it in a relevant thread of this forum, or start a new one. Someone will help you! I will be updating and expanding this FAQ on a regular basis, but I certainly cannot address every possible question. If you notice any mistakes in this FAQ, please send me an email to Ilya @ SatelliteGuys.us (remove spaces) or send me a PM. Comments and suggestions concerning this FAQ can also be posted in the following thread: VOOM STB FAQ - comments and suggestions.

Feel free to link to this FAQ by using the following URL: http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?t=7178 I wouldn't link to individual sections, as they change from time to time.

Ilya.

P.S. Many thanks to everyone who contributed to this FAQ, especially to Sean Mota for his inspiring hard work in this forum!
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VOOM STB FAQ: General Questions

<a name="Q1-1"></a>What is VOOM STB (IRD)?
VOOM STB is a Set-Top Box that was offerd by VOOM (Rainbow DBS) as its satellite receiver. It is also known as “Integrated Receiver-Decoder” (IRD). VOOM offered just one type of STB: Motorola DSR-550.​
<a name="Q1-2"></a>If I buy a DSR-550 box from someone, can I use it as an OTA TV receiver?
Yes, you should be able to use the box as a standalone ATSC receiver for digital Over-the-Air channels (both HD and SD, but digital only, not analog!), as long as the following conditions are all met:

1. The box has been activated for a VOOM DBS customer. ("New-in-box" most likely won't work!)
2. The box was never deactivated: it was either active till the last day of VOOM DBS, or it has been disconnected from the satellite dish before the "kill" signal was ever sent to it.
3. The box has a recent software version: 6.10 or above, preferrably 7.37.
4. The box was not Factory Reset.
5. The PIN is not set or it is known.

<a name="Q1-3"></a>What are the STB dimensions?
Width = 17"
Depth = 13" (not including cables and/or snap-on diplexer)
Height = 3"​
<a name="Q1-4"></a>How many tuners does the STB have?
The STB has 2 tuners: a built-in satellite tuner and a removable OTA (8VSB) tuner module. At the present time only OTA tuner can be used to receive programming.​
<a name="Q1-5"></a>Does VOOM STB support MPEG-2, MPEG-4 or WMV9 encoding?
Only MPEG-2 encoding is supported, though the STB was designed to be upgradable to MPEG-4 (more precisely MPEG-4.10, aka AVC, aka H.264) and WMV9 (aka VC-9) via an add-on module.​
<a name="Q1-6"></a>Is VOOM STB upgradeable?
Yes, it was designed to be upgradable, though since VOOM as a DBS company is now gone, upgrades are no longer possible. In the past, software updates were done automatically via satellite. The STB also has an expansion slot for MPEG4/WMV9 card (which was never released). Additionally, the OTA tuner module can be easily replaced.​
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P.S. DSR-550 User Manual (VOOM Viewer's Guide) is attached. Note, that this is an old version that may not reflect the latest changes in the software.
 

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VOOM STB FAQ: Video/Audio Hookup

<a name="Q2-1"></a>Which input should the OTA antenna be connected to?
If your setup does not include diplexer, you will see five coaxial connectors on the back of the STB (see picture below). The labels are not very clear and it is not easy to tell which one is which. If you look from the back, the right-most connector is for your OTA antenna. It is actually on a small removable plastic module (8VSB OTA tuner module). If you don't see the module inserted, but see a small plastic door instead - the 8VSB module must be missing. The second coax connector from the right is labeled "SAT" and has a small dish icon next to it: this one is for the satellite dish.

DSR-550back.jpg

DSR-550 view from the back. (Courtesy of geekygizmo)
Note, that if you do not have a diplexer but have an amplified OTA antenna, you will need to get a power supply (power inserter). Power inserter is normally included with Stealth, but may not be included with other types of antennas, like Winegard Sensar II. The Winegard Sensar II antenna shipped by VOOM normally relies on power comming from the diplexer and doesn't come with a separate power supply, which means you either need to use a diplexer, or you have to buy the power supply yourself.

In a diplexer setup the two connectors are combined with a small square-shaped snap-on diplexer module, and there is only one coax cable for both dish and OTA antenna (see picture below). For OTA-only applications, unlock and then remove the diplexer. (If you have an amplified antenna, make sure you have a stand-alone power supply, as the OTA connection does not supply voltage when the diplexer is removed.) In any case, do not use the coax connection labeled "UHF": this one is for RF remotes!
dipl_installed.jpg

DSR-550 with diplexer attached.
<a name="Q2-2"></a>Which video/audio outputs does the STB have?
The STB has 10 sets of outputs: 6 video and 4 audio. Video outputs include: DVI, Component (Y/Pr/Pb), S-video, two sets of Composite and RF Coaxial. There is no RGB output. Audio outputs include: Optical Digital (Toslink), 5.1 Coaxial Digital (S/PDIF) and two sets of analog outputs. All video and audio outputs are active at the same time.​
<a name="Q2-3"></a>Which outputs should I use?
HDTV sets should be connected via DVI or Component. Only these two types of outputs offer 1080i, 720p and 480p resolutions. All other video output types (S-video, composite and RF) can only offer 480i SD resolution. If you have a Dolby Digital surround sound receiver you should use digital audio outputs: coaxial or optical.

connections.jpg

DVI and Component cables connected.
<a name="Q2-4"></a>What type of DVI cable do I need?
The DSR-550 supports Single Link and Dual Link DVI-D cables. A DVI-D cable is now provided by VOOM with each install. Although Single Link DVI cables are sufficient for all supported HD resolutions, Dual Link cables are not much more expensive, so, if you are buying a new DVI cable yourself, you may consider the Dual Link version (see http://www.pacificcable.com/DVI_Tutorial.htm for explanation). HDMI, is not currently supported, but you can find a DVI-to-HDMI cable if your TV set requires HDMI.​
<a name="Q2-5"></a>Is HDCP enabled through DVI? Does this mean that component is downrezed?
HDCP seems to be enforced in recent software versions. Non-HDCP Monitors may not work with DSR-550 over DVI. However, component outputs support full HD resolution: 1080i and 720p.​
<a name="Q2-6"></a>Can I connect multiple TVs/VCRs/DVRs to one STB?
Yes. All video and audio outputs of the STB are active simultaneously. So you can watch and record the same program on several TVs/VCRs/DVRs at the same time.​
<a name="Q2-7"></a>Which video resolutions does the STB support?
The STB can output video in one of 4 resolutions over DVI and Component outputs: 1080i, 720p, 480p or 480i. You can select the output resolution, that works best for your monitor (in which case the STB will convert everything to this resolution), or you can leave the STB in "Native" mode to follow the source resolution. Regardless of the selected resolution, the STB will convert everything to 480i for composite, S-video and RF outputs.​
<a name="Q2-8"></a>How do I switch the video resolution? Where is that "Red Button"?
Starting with version 6.00 you can change the STB resolution in the Installation Wizard on-screen menu (except for Native mode). Alternatively you can use the hidden Red Button behind a small door with the Motorola logo at the bottom right corner of the front panel of the STB. Press the button several times. Each time you press it, one of four horizontal bars on the front panel will blink orange, indicating a resolution change. The upper bar means 1080i, the second one - 720p, the third - 480p, the bottom bar means 480i. All four bars at once means "Native" mode, in which the output resolution follows the source.
RedButton.jpg

Hidden Red Button.
<a name="Q2-9"></a>Which video resolution should I choose?
If you have an HDTV set, 1080i fixed resolution mode would be a good starting point. Some HDTV sets do not support (or have problems with) 720p and Native modes. I recommend you start with 1080i and later experiment with other modes. For SD TV you should use 480i (or 480p if your TV set supports progressive scan).​
<a name="Q2-10"></a>Can I watch HD channels on an SDTV set?
Yes you can. All channels can be down-converted to 480i SD.​
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VOOM STB FAQ: Remote

<a name="Q3-1"></a>How do I program my VOOM remote for my TV set and/or VCR?
To program the VOOM remote for your TV (or VCR), do the following:

1. Turn the TV set (or VCR) on.
2. Press TV and OK (VCR and OK in case of VCR) buttons simultaneously. VOOM button will light and stay on.
3. Press and hold down the CH+ button until your TV (VCR) turns off. This may take up to two minutes.
4. Press CH- five times. If the TV set (VCR) does not turn on automatically, turn it on manually.
5. Press CH+ one at a time until the television (VCR) turns off.
6. Press the TV (VCR) button to save the code.
7. Repeat steps 1-6 to find a different code (auto-scan will resume where you left off).​
<a name="Q3-2"></a>Can I use a different remote with VOOM?
Yes, you might be able to use other programmable remotes with your STB. If VOOM and Motorola are not listed, try codes for General Instrument (GI), Jerrold, Primestar or StarChoice.​
<a name="Q3-3"></a>Does the STB have discrete On/Off codes?
No. So far, such IR codes have not been reported.​
<a name="Q3-4"></a>Does the Page button work correctly?
This might not be so obvious, but the Page button is actually a two-directional button: it can be pressed up or down.​
<a name="Q3-5"></a>Is there an Exit button to exit from any menu?
Yes there is. The WATCH button behaves as an exit button.​
<a name="Q3-6"></a>Did VOOM offer an RF/UHF remote?
No, it didn't. But the STB has a port for a UHF remote and the port is active. It can be used with some non-VOOM UHF remotes. It is also possible to convert VOOM remote to an RF remote using Remote Range Xtender kit from Next Generation Home Products, Inc.
Note: For additional information and for discussion of specific questions click on
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VOOM STB FAQ: Local OTA Channels

<a name="Q4-1"></a>Did VOOM deliver local channels via satellite?
No, VOOM did not deliver local channels via satellite. However, VOOM installation included an antenna to receive local Over-the-Air (OTA) digital channels. VOOM STB comes with 8VSB OTA tuner module.​
<a name="Q4-2"></a>Which local channels will I be able to receive?
The DSR-550 software relies on a predefined Super-DMA map of channels for each location (where it was activated). In addition, you can scan for local channels in the Installation Wizard menu. If you are located far from transmission towers, certain channels might not be available to you, or may require an upgraded antenna. You can check the list of available digital channels and antenna requirements for your location at www.antennaweb.org.​
<a name="Q4-3"></a>Can I tune to channels that are not listed in my channel map?
Yes, you might be able to. Starting with version 6.00 you can scan for additional OTA channels available in your area and add them to the map. However, if the channel does not send certain PSIP data in its digital data stream, such channel cannot be added.​
<a name="Q4-4"></a>Does the STB support multiple maps (multiple DMAs)?
Each activated STB is configured to a single OTA map based on where it was activated, but this map includes channels from neighboring DMAs (a Super-DMA map). Also, starting with version 6.00 you can scan for additional OTA channels available in your area and add them to the map.​
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VOOM STB FAQ: On-Screen Program Guide

<a name="Q5-1"></a>Does the Program Guide show OTA listings?
The Program Guide for both satellite and OTA channels was updated via VOOM satellite. It is no longer updated.​
<a name="Q5-7"></a>How do I create a list of Favorite channels?
Press "VOOM" and then the green button to enter the "Options and Settings" menu. Select "Favorites" menu option. Scroll through the list of all channels and press OK for each channel you want to be included to the Favorites. Only one Favorites list can be configured per STB.​
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VOOM STB FAQ: The Surf Bar

<a name="Q6-1"></a>What is the Surf Bar?
The Surf Bar is a small text box at the bottom of your screen with the channel name and number, and other information. It appears for a few seconds whenever you change channels, or if you press "Info" or one of the navigation buttons. In addition to showing information about the currently selected channel, the Surf Bar can be used for channel navigation: you can use navigation buttons to browse through the list of channels while still watching the current program on the remaining portion of the screen.​
<a name="Q6-2"></a>How do I select a program with the Surf Bar?
Use navigation buttons (Up/Down/Right/Left) to scroll through the list of channels. Press "OK" to select the program. If the program is currently on, the STB will tune to it immediately.​
<a name="Q6-3"></a>Can I use the Surf Bar to browse through the Favorites list?
Yes. Once the Surf Bar is on, you can use the yellow button to navigate to the next channel in your Favorites list.​
<a name="Q6-4"></a>The Surf Bar is too small on SD channels. Can I make it bigger?
If your STB is set to Native mode, the Surf Bar, the Program Guide and all on-screen menus change size as you switch from HD channels to SD channels. If you don't like this behavior, try switching the STB to a fixed-resolution mode, e.g. 1080i.​
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VOM STB FAQ: Program Planner

<a name="Q7-1"></a>How do I add a program to the Planner?
Simply navigate to a future program in the on-screen Program Guide or in the Surf Bar, press "OK" or "Info" to view the program information and then press the yellow button to schedule the program. You will get a reminder 15 seconds before the scheduled time, and the STB will change the channel when the program starts.​
<a name="Q7-2"></a>How do I view or change the list of scheduled programs?
Press "VOOM" and then the green button to enter "Options and Settings" menu. Select "Program Planner" menu option. Scroll through the list of all scheduled programs. You can delete schedules by pressing the red button on your remote.​
<a name="Q7-3"></a>Can I disable the 15-second warning?
Yes, you can. In the Program Planner select a scheduled program and press "OK" for schedule options. Press "Down" to select the "Auto On" option and press "OK" to activate it.​
<a name="Q7-4"></a>Will the STB automatically power up at the scheduled time?
It will, but only if you selected the "Auto On" option in the Program Planner as described above. The default "Remind" option does not turn the STB on.​
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VOOM STB FAQ: STB Software

<a name="Q8-1"></a>What is the STB Software?
DSR-550 is essentially a specialized computer, and as any computer it needs a software program to operate. Various features of the STB, including on-screen menus and the Program Guide are controlled by this software. The "Neptune" software (also called firmware) now comes pre-loaded on each STB. When VOOM DBS was operational, it had a capability to update the software in all or select boxes at any time via satellite.​
<a name="Q8-2"></a>Which software version do I have?
There are several ways to check your STB software version. Here is the simplest one. On your VOOM remote, press “Help” and then “Info”. You should see three lines of version info. The last line should look like this: “Nep: 737”, where 737 is the software version. Currently, 737 is the latest released version. It is also referred to as “HAL 00.07.37” or as "Software Version 2.4C". If the Help-Info sequence doesn’t work for you, you might have an older version. Try this sequence instead: press “VOOM” button followed by “Info”. You should see a similar Version Info screen. The following versions have been officially released:
00.07.37 (nep: 737, aka Software Version 2.4C) - Released on February 11, 2005 to 5% of the customer base and then to 100% by February 17, 2005
00.07.34 (nep: 734, aka Software Version 2.44) - Released on January 25, 2005 (to some of the customers)
00.07.33 (nep: 733, aka Software Version 2.40) - Released on January 11, 2005
00.07.26 (nep: 726, aka Software Version 2.30) - Released on November 16, 2004
00.07.0B (nep: 70b, aka Software Version 2.10) - Released on October 6, 2004 to 10-20% of the customers, but then rolled back to 620 due to new issues
00.06.20 (nep: 620, aka Software Version 1.20) - Released on August 12, 2004
00.06.10 (nep: 610, aka Software Version 1.10) - Released on July 27, 2004
00.06.00 (nep: 600, aka Software Version 1.04) - Shipped with some new STBs in July, 2004
00.05.68 (nep: 568) - April 2, 2004
00.05.5c (Nep: 55c) - March 22, 2004
00.05.08 (Nep: 508) - October (?) 2003
<a name="Q8-3"></a>How do I update the software?
You can't. In the past, the software updates were done via satellite.​
 
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VOOM STB FAQ: STB Configuration

<a name="Q9-1"></a>Where do I change system settings?
On your remote press "VOOM" and then "green" twice. In the Settings menu navigate down to the last item "System Settings" and press OK. A warning will be displayed for a few seconds and you will be taken to the System Settings menu. From there you can change the Picture format, enable closed captioning and screen saver, change audio and video settings. From the System Settings menu you can also get to the Installation Settings menu or check the System Status.​
<a name="Q9-2"></a>What are these Audio Compression settings for?
There are three audio compression modes: heavy, light/hi-fi, or none. Select "None" to pass the sound to your audio gear unchanged. Compressed modes reduce the dynamic range of the sound: there is less of a difference between the soft dialogue and booming explosions. Compressed sound might be preferrable during late-night viewing. Your AV receiver may have a similar feature called "Midnight Mode".​
<a name="Q9-3"></a>How do I check the signal strength?
There are different ways how you can do this. Here is the quickest one. Press "Help", then "Info", then "OK". You will get a "System Status" screen. Use Up/Down navigation buttons to scroll through five different status pages. The third page displays signal strength, quality and signal to noise ratio for the last channels tuned.​
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VOM STB FAQ: Telephone Line Connection

<a name="Q10-1"></a>Do I have to connect my STB to a telephone line?
No. In the past VOOM Customer Agreement required all STBs to be connected to a land-based telephone line, though this requirement was never enforced.​
<a name="Q10-2"></a>What is the phone connection for?
The phone line allowed the STB to report back to VOOM when requested via satellite. This could potentially be used to verify the physical location of each STB, and for other purposes, like ordering Pay-per-View programs with the remote.​
<a name="Q10-3"></a>Were software updates done over the phone?
No. Software updates were always done via satellite.​
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VOOM STB FAQ: Troubleshooting

<a name="Q12-1"></a>My STB has locked up / got stuck on a channel. How do I reboot?
There are two ways to reboot your STB.
1. "Soft" Reboot: Press the power button on the front panel of the STB for 5-6 seconds, or
2. "Hard" Reboot: Unplug the STB for 15 seconds and then plug it in again.
Note, that the Program Guide and even the channel labels will be lost after the reboot. If you experience any problems after the reboot, repeat the reboot procedure or try a reboot of a different type (e.g. Hard vs. Soft).​
<a name="Q12-2"></a>The picture quality doesn't seem to be HD
Several possible explanations:
1. Make sure you are using DVI or Component outputs. Other types of outputs (S-video, composite, RF coax) do not offer HD resolutions.
2. Make sure the STB is set to one of the HD resolutions: 1080i, 720p or "Native" (press the red button behind the small door to change the resolution).
3. Check your TV set specification. Make sure it supports the selected resolution. For example, some TV sets down-convert 720p to 480p.
4. You might be watching an SD channel. Only certain channels are HD. Try other channels.
5. Most of OTA HD channels show HD programming only at certain times. It is possible that you are watching an SD program.
6. Some old movies may look too grainy even with HD transfer.​
<a name="Q12-3"></a>I am not getting any local (OTA) channels at all
Unless you are surrounded by mountains or located too far from any OTA transmission tower, you should be able to receive at least some local channels. If you are not able to scan in any channels at all, it usually means a wiring problem or a malfunctioning signal amplifier.​
<a name="Q12-4"></a>I am getting some local channels but not all of them
There might be different reasons for that. Let's try to sort them out. First of all, it is important to understand, that VOOM STB can only receive digital channels, and not all local channels are broadcast in digital yet, though eventually they will be. Second, you will not be able to tune to channels that are not explicitly listed in the on-screen Program Guide. If some channels are missing in the Program Guide, try OTA channel scanning. Also, keep in mind that a pre-configured OTA (Super-DMA) map may cover a relatively large area, so certain stations might be simply too far from your location.

To find out which digital stations are available in your area go to a website like www.antennaweb.org and enter your street address. It will tell you what kind of OTA antenna might be required and which direction it should be pointing to.​
<a name="Q12-5"></a>I am getting a lot of pixilation and the picture is breaking up
Breakups can be caused by weather conditions ("rain fade") or by improperly pointed antenna. Make sure to check the signal strength and quality.​
<a name="Q12-7"></a>Occasionally I get no sound or no picture after switching channels
This is a known issue in some STB software versions. Simply switching channel Up and Down usually resolves the problem.​
<a name="Q12-8"></a>Occasionally I see a white spot (stuck pixels) on the screen
This is a known issue in all STB software versions. Pressing "VOOM" and then "Watch" or turning the STB Off and then On usually resolves it.​
<a name="Q12-9"></a>I get white snow screen (or dark screen) for a couple of seconds when switching channels
This is a known issue in some versions of the STB software. This usually occurs in "Native" resolution mode when switching between channels with different resolution. To avoid this problem, switch your STB to a fixed-resolution mode, like 1080i.​
<a name="Q12-11"></a>Where can I find the list of known bugs in the STB software?
The list of known bugs, issues and the most wanted features can be found in the following thread: http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?t=5671
<a name="Q12-12"></a>The box is locked with a PIN code? What do I do?
Try 0000, 1234 and any other obvious combination. Unfortunately there is currently no known way to reset the PIN! If the box is locked in the Demo mode, there is a special pin code that can be used derived from the Serial Number (000-00000-0XXXX-000)​
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VOOM STB FAQ: Hidden "System Configuration" Menu

<a name="Q13-1"></a>IMPORTANT: System Configuration Menu is not intended for end-users. Certain items in this menu may damage your audio equipment or make your STB non-operational. Proceed on your own risk!

How do I access the Service Menu?
To access the System Configuration Menu (Service Menu) press the following buttons on your VOOM remote: "VOOM", then Green button twice. Select "System Settings" in the menu. Select "Installer Menu" menu item. Slowly press "9 8 8" on the remote. You will see "System Configuration" menu with the following options:
1. Manual Tune (manually tune to a satellite channel)
2. SD Audio & Video Test (make sure to turn your volume down!)
3. HD Audio & Video Test (make sure to turn your volume down!)
4. Modem Setup & Test
5. Authorization Reset (DO NOT DO THIS! Your box will lose the OTA capability!)
6. Factory Reset (DO NOT DO THIS! Your box will lose the OTA capability!)
7. Audio Test Mode​
<a name="Q13-2"></a>What does the Factory Reset do?
The Factory Reset clears most of the internally stored parameters and returns the STB to a factory initialized state. The Factory Reset (FR)preserves the latest downloaded Software, but it completely erases the OTA map, the Favorites list and other user-configured parameters, including your authorization data. You can initiate the Factory Reset by going to the System Configuration Menu as described above, and selecting item 6. After doing the FR, your DSR-550 will become pretty much useless, as there is currently no known way to restore its autherization.
<a name="Q13-3"></a>Will the Factory Reset help me get missing OTA channels?
No it won't! In fact you will lose the OTA capability completely.​
<a name="Q13-4"></a>What are possible side-effects of the Factory Reset?
The Factory Reset will erase most of the configuration parameters, including the authorization data with no way to restore it.​
<a name="Q13-5"></a>Are there any other hidden menus or screens?
Yes. Press "Help" and then "Info" ("VOOM"-"Info", if you have version 05.08) to check the Version Info, then press "OK", to access "System Status" screens. Also, from the "Installation Settings" menu you can access the following menus:
"Advanced System Status" menu by pressing "9 7 7". Several screens of technical and diagnostics data.

"Operational Mode" (Demo Mode) menu - by pressing "9 6 6". This allows you to switch the STB to a demonstration mode designed for in-store VOOM demonstration (at Sears, etc.). It limits the number of channels and locks system settings with a pin code, so kids in the store would not mess it up. Nothing interesting really ;) IMPORTANT: make sure to setup your pin code before switching to the Demo mode! If you don't do this your STB will be locked with a special pin code (derived from the serial number of the box) and you may have problems returning it back to the normal mode. So, don't do that!
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Ilya

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Recent additions to the FAQ:
07/24/05: Revised to reflect the post-VOOM reality...

01/27/05: Revised to reflect software versions 7.33 and 7.34.

12/04/04: Revised to reflect the changes made in version 7.26.

10/11/04: Revised to reflect the changes made in version 7.0b.

08/12/04: Revised to reflect the changes made in version 6.20.

07/27/04: Revised to reflect the changes made in version 6.00 and 6.10.

06/18/04: Each question in the list is now hyperlinked to the corresponding paragraph with the answer. There are also links labeled "Top" that take you back to the top of the question list. I hope this will make it easier to use this FAQ. If you notice any links that don't work, please let me know.

06/14/04: Added the following sections: "On-Screen Program Guide", "The Surf Bar", "Program Planner".

06/05/04: Added a new section: "Hidden 'System Configuration' Menu."

05/20/04: Added the "General Questions" section; corrected the DVI cable paragraph (Dual Link cable is not required!); some other minor updates and corrections.

05/17/04: Added a section about phone line connection: seems to be a popular topic lately...

05/17/04: Another regular topic: "DVR/PVR".

If you have any comments, suggestions concerning this FAQ, please post them in the following thread:

VOOM STB FAQ - comments and suggestions.

Other helpful VOOM-related resources and threads:
 
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Updated to reflect software versions 7.33 and 7.34.
 
Ilya

Ilya

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Since the DSR-550 box has found an afterlife as an OTA receiver, ;)
I have revised and updated this FAQ to reflect the post-VOOM reality.

If you have any comments about this FAQ, please post them in the following thread:
VOOM STB FAQ - comments and suggestions.

Ilya.
 
T

tom1st

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Oct 1, 2004
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0
what is the difference between the moto 550 and the 505
 
L

lilyarbie

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Feb 5, 2005
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From what I've heard.......

Both units are similar except for the fact that the 505 excludes the ATSC antenna cartridge that the 550 includes.
 
Ilya

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Both are made by Motorola and have a similar hardware design. However, STB is just a computer. Two computers may look very similar, but differ significantly in their specs and in software installed on them.
DSR505 (designed for Star Choice) runs a very different software (firmware) compared to DSR550 (used by VOOM), and most importantly, as lilyarbie pointed out, the DSR505 is missing the OTA tuner, so it cannot be used as an OTA receiver.
 

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