Hitachi HDR081 problem

chergan

Member
I have a Hitachi HDR081 which was working fine yesterday. Usually when I switch it on from standby the TV automatically switches to the pvr but today it didn't. So I turned it of at the mains but when I turned it back on again it says Starting on the display and nothing else happens.

Any ideas what this could be?
 

Futaura

Active Member
The most common problems on these boxes are due to a failed PSU board (faulty capacitors) or hard drive. Given that the front panel display is coming up to the point you say, it is probably the hard drive.

Personally, the first thing I'd try is to open up the box (unplugged first, of course) and disconnect both the data and power cables from the hard drive. Then try powering the box on to see if it will boot to live tv - it should do, but will display an error message along the lines of recording functionality not available.
 

chergan

Member
The most common problems on these boxes are due to a failed PSU board (faulty capacitors) or hard drive. Given that the front panel display is coming up to the point you say, it is probably the hard drive.

Personally, the first thing I'd try is to open up the box (unplugged first, of course) and disconnect both the data and power cables from the hard drive. Then try powering the box on to see if it will boot to live tv - it should do, but will display an error message along the lines of recording functionality not available.
Many thanks, will try this later.
 

chergan

Member
The most common problems on these boxes are due to a failed PSU board (faulty capacitors) or hard drive. Given that the front panel display is coming up to the point you say, it is probably the hard drive.

Personally, the first thing I'd try is to open up the box (unplugged first, of course) and disconnect both the data and power cables from the hard drive. Then try powering the box on to see if it will boot to live tv - it should do, but will display an error message along the lines of recording functionality not available.
I have disconnected the hard drive and powered the box on but still getting the same problem, the display just says Starting and nothing else happens.

Does this mean the hard drive is probably ok?

I have some recordings on the hard drive, is it possible to view these somehow?

many thanks
 

Futaura

Active Member
I have disconnected the hard drive and powered the box on but still getting the same problem, the display just says Starting and nothing else happens.

Does this mean the hard drive is probably ok?

I have some recordings on the hard drive, is it possible to view these somehow?
Yes, probably the hard drive is fine, as long as you did disconnect both the ribbon cable and the power cable from the drive. Sounds like some kind of failure either on the PSU board or the main board. Do you remember anything else from the original problem before you turned it off at the mains? You say the TV didn't switch to the scart input from the box as it would of course normally do, but at this point was the front panel showing anything abnormal? Or was it just displaying the channel name as if it was working correctly? It could be that turning off/on at the mains could have finished off any already failing capacitor on the PSU board - these can often be spotted visually by having a domed top rather than flat. You may find this thread useful which details common fixable failures for the T810 model, but these are the same the T816 model (which is what your HDR081 is).

The hard drive can be hooking up to a PC, but you will need to install some software capable of reading partitions using the Linux ext2 filesystem. There are some free tools for Windows that can be used. Alternatively, if you can find a cheap working secondhand T816 box, you could put your hard drive in that (maybe even the newer T825 models). Check my site for details on what the T816 and T825 are - http://www.vestelpvr.futaura.co.uk/.
 

chergan

Member
Yes, I did disconnect both the ribbon cable and the power cable from the drive. Before switching off at the mains the front panel was working correctly, just nothing appeared on the tv. I was able to turn on and off with the standby button and also when I pressed the Library button, Lib appeared on the panel. I have had a look inside and one of the capacitors on the PSU board has a domed top.

I'll probably just get a new one rather than try to fix it.

Many many thanks for your help.
 
Last edited:

Futaura

Active Member
Well, if you are handy with a soldering iron or know somebody who is, it's worth spending a few pence on a new capacitor and trying to fix it. Of course, there could be a secondary fault, but it can't do any harm trying.

Regarding a replacement, if you are not worried about Freeview HD support, I would recommend any of the Vestel T835 boxes: Argos have the Hitachi HDR255 and Bush 320Gb for £90 at the moment. These share the same familiar user interface as your HDR081, being made by the same company. Refurbished T835 boxes can be found for substantially less, and might be worth the risk - Tesco Outlet had Technika T835 250Gb boxes for £38 recently on ebay, complete with a 12 month warranty. I personally would steer clear of refurbished items with lesser warranties.
 

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