Hi Update: New firmware released 23 August 2010. Not much feedback so far and not much seems to have been improved or changed. See the list below for what appears fixed or confirmed as no improvement, not fixed. I no longer have access to this model as the two I had have been returned and a friends also was returned due to the problems listed below. Currently Philips are saying a firmware update is due the beginning of August 2010, which my definition of the beginning of August is now almost gone (7 August as I write this), however some are being told the later part of August. WhatHiFi were told by Pace a firmware update would arrive in September for Dolby Digital transcoding. Update 21/8/2010 Philips are now saying beginning of September before a firmware update. So as has always been the case with Pace/Philips, no one is getting an honest answer from support, and every beginning or mid or end of the month of May, June, July, August and September we have been told there will be a firmware update released, of course to date there has been nothing. In addition there has been zero information about what this firmware will fix or improve upon. In my view there are much better choices available now for a Freeview HD PVR, all of which have been better supported and have better user interfaces and more features, that this Philips HDT8520 PVR is really best avoided. To all those still using this PVR, good luck with the new firmware if and when it arrives. When it does please post feedback and I'll update the list below with bugs or issues that have been fixed. These are issues relating to the Philips Freeview HD PVR HDT8520. The list of issues are growing, please note this is no way a bash Philips/Pace thread. I like others have currently spent £300 on this box and really think it is worth trying to get the manufacturer to look into these issues and bugs, otherwise it is going back for a refund. Philips/Pace know of this thread but haven't responded here or to me personally about when new firmware will be issued addressing the most important problems. This means a lot of us will give up and return the box sooner for a refund rather than later when getting a refund might be more troublesome. We have heard so much conflicting information from Philips and Pace it is hard to know what to believe, on the plus side they have given positive information (see this thread) saying they know about the issues and a mistake meant the boxes shipped with an older software version by mistake, and new firmware to address important issues to be release by the end of May. Other responses have been less encouraging with firmware for June at the earliest, which as of writing could mean a wait of a month. Pace seem to be pushing any contact with them directly back to Philips, but are quick enough to post the proverbial press release saying how fantastic their new bit of kit is The UK's first Freeview+ HD PVR hits the shelves. Note despite what the press release says, Pace were not the first manufacturer to have an HD PVR on the shelves, that goes to DigitalStream DHR-8203 which seems to have fewer issues and I nicer EPG and interface! Official Philips support page is here: HDT8520/05 Philips Digital Terrestrial Recorder HDT8520 High definition - Philips Support In attempt to have a central list of issues I've started this thread and will send a link to Pace so they can review it. Hopefully we can shape how this PVR turns out. Please add any bugs, corrections or feature requests to a post here and I will update this top one. Currently these bugs relate to firmware version 2.11, shipping on current boxes. No other versions of firmware are available yet. Bugs Schedule list can become corrupt see this post Single instance scheduled items don't seem to ever be deleted from the schedule, perhaps they could stay for 24 hours to have a record of what was set but marked in some way to indicate they are 'spent', then cleared after 24 hours or some other period of time. When a scheduled item is selected they all always seem to say "This recording is active. Choose 'Delete' to delete it" even when not actively recording anything. Would expect this text to only show to indicate currently recording items. [NOT FIXED]Out of sync audio issues and broken lip-sync setting, updated see this post, also seen by jimmbo60 report here No PCM 5.1 channel output over HDMI, this may be waiting for a firmware update to enable [FIXED]Deleting items from the library pressing Blue then Red deletes an item with the next item selected but pressing Blue will not unlock until the item is deselected then reselected. Scheduled Recording - no option for padding in place of accurate recording. Should be an option to select padding times for start and end, allowing different values for both, perhaps 3, 5, 10 minutes. Padding is then applied automatically and accurate recording signals are ignored. The schedule still uses seriels link and EPG tracking, just the accurate recording element of Freeview+ is ignored and padding is used in place of it. Scheduled Recording - no options to manually enter a recording schedule Report of random HDCP message from the Philips box and to press the Green button to change resolution. Happens randomly while playing a recording, reported by 'brookheather' here on a Panasonic TV. Highlighting a folder containing Series Link recordings and get unexpected live TV in the thumbnail window Playback: Skipping back or forward creates a brief audio glitch - it would be better to mute audio until it is stable (brookheather in post here) Playback: When you skip the progress bar is displayed but it still shows the time from the last time it was displayed and then it skips and updates with the new time. The current position should be shown when the progress bar is displayed (brookheather in post here) Scheduled Recording: It appears when selecting a program to record from the EPG and using series link that the box is incorrectly scheduled all instances of that program, so it adds repeats as well as the main showing. Reported by daveh48 here. Update, inconsistent behaviour depending on if selecting a single program or to record the entire series, reported by daveh48, PhilipL, GizmoStu, mike.cloaked, another example of recording when it shouldn't be by Damian Arstall here Scheduled Recording: The front red indicator LED does not always illuminate to show a recording is in progress, seen by daveh48 Sound: Problems with low audio that seem to be resolved by muting or adjust the volume, reported here by charles bronson, here by brookheather, here by willp2003, reported here by Darth_terra, reported here by gamcl Scheduled Recording: It reports a conflict when no apparent conflict is seen, update: perhaps it is just flagging all alternative instances but not going to record them unless a conflict happens, if so they should be highlight or show with a different colour. Are these flagged other instances giving rise to false conflict warnings? Reported here by brookheather Sound: No volume or muting available from the Pace when using SCART (reported by windsurf123) Tuner: Signal strength on some mux's flicks between maximum signal and Red no signal every few seconds, reception of the channels on the mux are okay and the quality indicator remains at 100%. (seen by me and also reported by bishopsfinger here) Box freezing up: Some reports of boxes locking up, one example here by brookheather which also leaves a corrupt file that can not be deleted. Another report of the box freezing up from Andy Herne, reviewer of Philips/Pace finds lockup issues Digital Spy Forums - View Single Post - Philips/Pace Freeview HD PVR - HDT 8520 thread, I've had the main GUI crash leaving me with just the volume graphic working and a black screen, see post here, another box lock up while playing back which corrupted all the recordings on the hard disc reported by Darth_terra Sound: On changing resolutions between 720/1080 to 576 the audio through HDMI starts muting for a split second every 5 or so seconds. If turning on from standby, audio is fine in 576 until the resolution is switched up then back to 576 (as happens with Original resolution set) and it starts muting again. This has happened on my first and replacement one. Audio through optical is not affected. Tried three difference HDMI cables same issue Scheduled Recording: When using chase playback and watching a scheduled recording while it is still recording, and then deciding to not watch the whole recording and the box is put into standby, the scheduled recording is incorrectly stopped, so you end up with watch you have already watched, with the remainder of what you haven't, a couple of reports of this from johniboy and Jimbo73 Physical Design Flaw: DC Input jack is too close to the HDMI socket, this means you will not be able to use any HDMI cables that have larger than average plug housings. Sound: Volume control on the remote doesn't adjust the volume when using the left/right analogue outputs Sound: When listening to a radio station after around 10 minutes it starts pulsing on and off, Philips have replicated this issue, see post here, this might be related to bug 20 above. [NOT FIXED]Picture: Possible bug with the HDMI black level see here Chaseplay: Reports of issues when pausing live TV and trying to resume, reports by JeffD here and johniboy here, another case reported by johniboy here Sound/Volume control: When set to output Dolby Digital over digital out the Volume and Mute control buttons stop working EPG Scheduling: inconsistent handling of scheduling between selecting to record a single program or the entire series see and multiple instances recorded Sound: When watching HD material and using optical out, over time (10-15 minutes) the audio has drifted out of sync enough to start noticing lipsync issues, pausing and resuming can sync things back up, only for it to drift again. Playback: The box becomes confused and thinks it is still playing when it is paused, this happens randomly just pausing normal playback and will usually always happen if you use the cursor pad to skip back or forwards then press Pause quickly. While playback is paused correctly the front display on the box still says "Play". When you try and click Play to start playback again, there is no response and it remains paused. To leave pause mode you have to press the "Pause" button again, the front display now says Paused, then pressing Play will now start playback. This bug makes it appear the box isn't responding to being asked to resume playback. Usability issues/requests for features EPG - No search options, would expect genre and keyword search [FIXED]EPG - Can't use the EPG to jump to a channel [FIXED]EPG - No quick way to move up or down the list of channels, we require options to move a page up and a page down at a time, and be allowed to scroll above or below the ends, i.e. go up past the top and be at the bottom of the EPG. Example of a good EPG posted here by JeffD EPG - Scrolling across the EPG to different times/days, you can jump by day using the Red and Green buttons and also using the Fast Forward and Rewind buttons. Would be better to rather than duplicate that functionality on two pairs of buttons, use one pair of the buttons to scroll left or right a page at a time and the other to jump by a day at a time. [NOT IMPLEMENTED]EPG - Have option to have small picture in picture to continue watching a recording or live TV while in the EPG, or keep the picture full screen but add a transparency option to the EPG. EPG - hitting OK on a program that is scheduled deletes the schedule with no warning! It should ask for confirmation to avoid accidentally removing scheduled items. HDD Library list - doesn't flag items as watched HDD Library list - Thumbnail takes time to show, only shows first frame so limited use. Option to select a time period to pick frame from more useful. Probably better to do away with thumbnails and use full width of screen to show a list with more information, such as date and time of the recording. At the moment you can't see the date without having to move up and down selecting each individual item. HDD Library list - Thumbnail causes the resolution to change when HDMI out is set to "Original", seems stupid for just a thumbnail and causes a delay while the screen resolution changes. HDD Library list - deleting items: Having all items locked by default defeats the point of having a lock as it becomes second nature to press Blue then Red to delete. It would be better not to lock items automatically and just put up "Are you sure you want to delete 'Come dine with me'". Playback: When stopping playback you get the Recording Management window and have to press stop again, why? This window should only appear if one or more recordings are in progress. If playing back and we want to stop playback, the Recording Management pop-up makes no sense as nothing is being recorded and we have to make a second key press, potentially making a mistake and stopping a recording. If playing back stop should stop, then if you press stop again and recordings are taking place, the Recording Management pop-up appears. Digital Output: When using original mode for HDMI resolution, SD channels should output at 576i (request by JeffD). It does make sense to output at 576i as this allows for a better TV or AV Amp to de-interlace Recording: Instant Record -In addition to the manual end time currently used, also have the option to use the EPG data to set the end time e.g. end of current programme. (request by JeffD). Playback: There doesn't seem to be a way to jump to a specific part of a recorded program - with the Toppy you can just type in a percentage - e.g. 25 to go to 25% of the recording. (brookheather in post here) Playback: Pressing info while watching a program does not display the program description - it should - if I'm watching something I like to be able to bring up the description to remind me of the episode. (brookheather in post here) HDD Library List: There is no "Keep max expsiodes" option which I find vital to limit the number of recorded episodes of programs like CSI, Top Gear. (brookheather in post here) EPG - You can't switch between the EPG and list of recordings - you have to press Exit first and then press the button to switch. (brookheather in post here) Set-up: No manual tuning options. (pointed out by SATM and others) General: In the EPG/Scheduled recording list and HDD Library show the approximate remaining capacity of the hard disk as hours for SD and for HD recordings (suggested by professorhat) Cosmetic White light. The Off option should be Off completely, currently Off still sees the white light come on at standby and shutdown. Demo option just makes it flash, which would drive anyone mad. Suggested options for light to make it more useful: Off - completely off and never comes on Standby - fades on or off as it does now when taking the box out or putting it into standby On dim - pulse on when you turn on then stays on but dimmed, goes off when put into standby On medium - as above but brighter On maximum - as above at full brightness Under no circumstances should the light react to the box coming on or off in active standby, i.e. a timer recording as people might have this in a bedroom or be distracted while watching something else. Schedule List: When a program name in the schedule list is too long to show completely in the space, on highlighting it, it doesn't scroll correctly left and right to read the full description (spotted by me) Wish list iPlayer support Transfer recordings to USB storage (may need to be restricted to SD due to copy protection You can't turn off MHEG - I prefer not to see the "Red button" messages when watching the news so I like to disable MHEG which I can do in the Toppy. You have to press the green button to dismiss the message. (brookheather in post here, put this as wish list as I suspect the Freeview people might not like this disabled as how else will we remember we can Press Red or Sing-a-long) To be able to playback video and audio from USB storage Be able to set specific HDMI resolution when playing/viewing HD, and set a specific resolution when playing/viewing SD. This over-rides the original and auto settings (suggested by bishipsfinger here) Utilise the two tuners to provide Picture in Picture (PIP and PAP) (suggested by bishipsfinger here ) Provide access to settings for the noise reduction filters available on the STi7105 chip, for example de-blocking and de-ringing of MPEG2 Support issues Update, now removed from the support page was: Philips support posted incorrect firmware on 25/5/2010, labelled for the HDT8520 however in the zip file the firmware is for the DTR5520. Luckily the box doesn't accept this firmware which prevented the incorrect file from causing any damage Philips first line support not upto date in their knowledge of this model see herefor example Emails sent to Paces email address appear to be forwarded to Philips, and Pace are not engaging directly with customers, I few of us have received this email as here marcdavis is doing a review of this box and also has run into issues and even captured lock-ups on film! He seems to have direct contact with Pace which might provide more information as to when a firmware update might be seen. See post Digital Spy Forums - View Single Post - Philips/Pace Freeview HD PVR - HDT 8520 thread marcdavis has had conference call with Pace in France and they are flying over to meet with him on Tuesday (1st June) to look at the issues. Those of a cynical nature might ask why they haven't responded in such a why with their customer complaints, but are now when the product might get a bad review? Thread is here Another case of first line support promising firmware updates in 2 days or 14 days, see here Apologies if I have not credited people for suggestions/bugs in the first listing above, this was simply down to the initial time it would take to search through posts finding the first mention of an issue or suggestion. History: 24/5/2010 Added feature request for manual turning options. Added as bug/missing 24/5/2010 Added wishlist for beign able to playback video and audio from USB storage 24/5/2010 Added feature request for remaining time estimate in hours to the EPG/Scheduling and Library screens 24/5/2010 Added bug, scheduled series link episodes pick up the repeats as well as the main-showing 24/5/2010 Added bug, front red recording LED does not always illuminate when a recording is in progress 24/5/2010 Added bug, low volume that is fixed by muting/un-muting or adjusting the volume. 24/5/2010 Added bug, scheduling can report a conflict where there is none 25/5/2010 Added bug, no volume or muting available when using SCART 25/5/2010 Added bug, signal strength meter on some mux's is seen jumping from 0% (Red) to 100% (Green) every few seconds 25/5/2010 Added link an example of a good EPG posted by JeffD 25/5/2010 Added warning about the incorrect firmware file posted on Philips support page 25/5/2010 Added support issues section 25/5/2010 Added wishlist options for PIP and customer HDMI resolutions settings for SD and HD output 25/5/2010 Added support issue and link to transcript showing first line support are not trained or briefed on this product 26/5/2010 Added bug regarding occasional crashes and lock ups 26/5/2010 Added cosmetic bug, program name does not scroll correctly in the scheduled listing page 26/5/2010 Added bug, sound is corrupted and starts muting for a split second every 5 seconds on HDMI when resolution is changed on the fly using original resolution or manually changing in the menu 26/5/2010 Added not under usability issues regarding alternative instances being shown as scheduled in the guide 26/5/2010 Added support issue, Pace passing the buck to Philips, not engaging with customers 26/5/2010 Added support issue, wrong firmware update eventually removed 26/5/2010 Added support issue, marcdavis doing a review caught lockups on video and has been in contact with Pace. 26/5/2010 Removed note about incorrect firmware on Philips support site, as this has finally been taken down 26/5/2010 Added under bugs links to others report lock ups 27/5/2010 Added clarification to audio out of sync issues when using optical to the amp, out of sync happens when skipping back and resuming play on HD material 27/5/2010 Added bug, scheduled recordings can become truncated if watching them while they are being recording and not watching the whole recording before putting the box into standby 28/5/2010 Added link in bugs with my experience of a lock-up 28/5/2010 Added design flaw, HDMI socket is too close to DC Power In which might cause issues with larger than average HDMI plugs, for example metal screened. 28/5/2010 Added bug, analogue output volume doesn't adjust respond to the volume control on the remote 28/5/2010 Added under support a link to MarcDavis who is reviewing the box and has a Pace engineer visiting him Tuesday to look at the various issues. 28/5/2010 Added under bug another user find low audio problems via HDMI that can be fixed by random adjustment of the volume control 29/5/2010 Added bug, radio station sound starts to pulse on and off after a period of time 29/5/2010 Added to bug number 15, another report of low HDMI audio volume 29/5/2010 Added to support issues, another case of promised firmware update 29/5/2010 Added possible bug with black level on the HDMI output 29/5/2010 Added to bug 19 another crash of the box rendering all recordings corrupt 30/5/2010 Added to bug for audio sync issue over digital out another report of it 30/5/2010 Added to bugs: Pausing live TV causes issues when resuming by jumping back 30/5/2010 Added bug, volume and mute controls stop working when digital out for audio is set to Dolby Digital 30/5/2010 Added more posts with info to the EPG scheduling issues bug 13 31/5/2010 Added another example of pausing live TV failing 31/5/2010 Added another example to the scheduling bug that picks up repeats when it shouldn't 13/6/2010 Added bug, audio drifts out of sync on HD recordings 14/6/2010 Added bug, pausing after skipping or rewinding/forwarding can cause the box to pause but still think it is playing back, so that pressing play will not start playback correctly, as it thinks it is. 14/6/2010 Added wish list item, provide settings for the various filters on the STi7105 chip.