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Topfield Faq - All Questions Answered


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#1 pgdownload

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Posted 13 April 2005 - 11:46 AM

Whatís New

Topfield have changed their Australian distributor in 2007. A new website and forum and FAQ has been developed for future Topfield developments:

Forum: http://forum.itopfield.com.au/

In particular owners of the HD 7000 series Toppy will find a lot of resources and assistance there.

Edit: It appears the itopfield FAQ and FORUM are being changed.

For owners of the older SD Toppy models (5000 MP, etc.), the old forum is still a valuable resource, however it is not known how long it will remain available.

Old Forum: http://www.topfield-...pbb2/search.php

The original Topfield AQA: http://www.topfield-...opic.php?t=6107

Regards

Peter Gillespie

Contents

* What is a PVR?
* How is a PVR different from a DVDR?
* Why all 'Twin Tuner' PVRs aren't the same
* Some Resources
* The Topfield Range
* The Toppy 4400
* The Toppy 7000
* Why all Twin Tuner PVRs aren't the same
* What cables should I use?
* Recording Foxtel, DVD and VCR Signals (You canít)
* Why is my Second Tuner is Missing?
* 0Mb file or file stops before times up.
* Reception Issues
* Toppy Tips
* Tips for New Owners- important
* Manual Time v Auto Time - important
* Daylight Savings
* Front Clock LED shows only the TIME - important
* Standby Vs Always On - important
* Upgrading Firmware
* Installing TAPs (Utilities)
* Leaving the Toppy unattended (Holidays)
* Burning Toppy REC files to DVD or AVI (and visa versa)
* The PC (and Mac and XBox and Linux) and the Toppy
* The NSLU2 (aka Slug)
* The Electronic Program Guide (EPG) and ICE
* Toppy Remote Controls
* Channel Numbering and Favourites
* Playback Stopped by Timer ("Check Your Reservation" message)
* Time Shift Buffer
* Heat
* Hard Drive Upgrade, Acoustic Management, Defragging
* Installing and External Hard drive (Caddie)
* Bugs: Annoying Audio Click & Component Output Saturation

Edited by pgdownload, 26 February 2009 - 08:17 AM.


#2 mjt57

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Posted 13 December 2008 - 11:57 AM

I'm confused. I was directed to the "old" Topfield forum when I recently purchased a Topfield 4400. It seems to be fairly current and active. The "new" forum less so.

What's the go here?

#3 RoderickGI

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Posted 19 December 2008 - 10:02 AM

G'Day Marty,

You are correct. The old forum is more active and up to date than the new forum. In fact, it seems that the new forum at iTopfield has had further problems since my last visit, as the TF6000PVRt section no longer exists. They must have had to reload the forum from a backup again. They had early problems which may be continuing. The iTopfield forum software and layout is more awkward to use as well, in my opinion. It also has bugs that they don't seem to want to fix.

So as long as the old forum stays functional, I and others keep using it. :D

It also seems that Pete only posted the contents page of the AQA here, and not the whole contents. Now the link to the iTopfield AQA post is broken. Another indication that they have reloaded the forum from an old backup. Imagine a forum that loses a heap of posts regularly?! The Downloads links to iTopfield is also broken. Maybe they will fix it . . .

Pete, maybe you should post the whole AQA here before it is lost forever?

Cheers,
Rod

#4 pgdownload

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Posted 19 December 2008 - 10:10 AM

Pete, maybe you should post the whole AQA here before it is lost forever?

Unfortunately it won't fit here (word limit on posts). I've got backup around here somewhere though :) MJT57 - The old forum is mostly focused on the SD models (ie the 4400). The new one is more for the HD models.

Regards

Peter Gillespie

#5 RoderickGI

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Posted 19 December 2008 - 10:30 AM

Thanks for the update Pete. Maybe a multi-post AQA is in order? Did you note that the http://www.itopfield.com.au/Faq.aspx link is no longer working?

By the way, I found the TF6000PVRt forum at iTopfield again. The site just opened with the standard definition PVR section minimised, and I didn't notice as I scolled down. :huh:

#6 Robert E

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Posted 08 January 2009 - 07:17 PM

It looks like this pinned post is overdue it annual service.
FAQs are now at http://www.itopfield...rt/faq_list.asp and there is no Downloads page as such (in terms of firmware).

#7 pgdownload

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Posted 09 January 2009 - 07:52 AM

It looks like this pinned post is overdue it annual service.
FAQs are now at http://www.itopfield...rt/faq_list.asp and there is no Downloads page as such (in terms of firmware).

Thanks Robert.

Peter Gillespie

#8 wrx884

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Posted 25 January 2009 - 02:14 PM

Hey Newbie here im still learning how 2 use these forums so 4give me if im in the wrong section. how eva ive purchased a 2nd hand TF5000PVRt black panther box now im trying 2 download the firmwear as mine was last updated in 2006 so well over due its update.

Ive tried the topfield site above but i dont know if its working? Ive downloaded the utility and the latest update and save them in a file but wen i go 2 use the utility and click on the saved file 2 down load nothing seems 2 happen? im using the TFD-USB way 2 down load it can any1 help?

The only reason im trying 2 do this in the 1st place as im having trouble picking up digital 7 but every other channel works fine any thoughts on that 2?

#9 audiohobbs

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 12:47 PM

Help! Repair to much-loved Toppy 5000MP required ASAP.

G'day, folks,

I had a slight muck-up on the blowing-the-power-supply front when attempting to replace the old HDD with a new WD 500Gb drive. Upshot is that a new power supply is needed and the guys at Topfield have them on back order but not expected in for another three weeks. They also said they don't replace components, only the whole psu circuit board.

So, given that an upgrade to the circuit board is possible (according to the section here http://toppyharddrive.blogspot.com/ ) I would prefer to have the board repaired with all the necessary capacitors and whatever else (including the dodgy IDE data cable I have for one not melted by the people who opened it at the factory!) replaced and proved working.

Does anyone know of someone in the Sydney vicinity that would do such a thing? I tried one electrical place who suggested return to Topfield, so I would be hugely grateful to anyone who can help me regain my toppy in days rather than weeks. Any advice gratefully received.

Cheers,

#10 pgdownload

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 02:13 PM

There's a regular here that might be able to help - he's definitely capable and is Sydney based. On occasion he's offered to help out on such fixes. He'll probably see this post anyway but I'll drop him a PM.

Mean time get your posts up to 5+ so you can send/recieve PMs from him. There's a thread dedicated to allowing this.

Regards

Peter Gillespie

#11 audiohobbs

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 05:04 PM

There's a regular here that might be able to help - he's definitely capable and is Sydney based. On occasion he's offered to help out on such fixes. He'll probably see this post anyway but I'll drop him a PM.

Mean time get your posts up to 5+ so you can send/recieve PMs from him. There's a thread dedicated to allowing this.

Regards

Peter Gillespie


Many thanks, I will look forward to hearing from him in the future then. And you, no doubt, too :-)

Al.

#12 tonymy01

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 06:14 PM

Wow, a fried PSU is something that might be dead easy to fix, or a big pain.
I have spare capacitors avail (that someone else bought as spares for me when I fixed their PSU capacitor issue). But without observing the fried bits, I dunno what I will be in for to fix a fritzed PSU if it got a short from the lid/whatever while in standby trying to change out the HDD :-)
Where are you, I am near Epping... oh, I tried to PM you but you haven't posted enough posts to allow me to PM you (silly restriction doing it that way, I can understand in the other direction).
Regards

#13 audiohobbs

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Posted 12 February 2009 - 02:44 PM

Wow, a fried PSU is something that might be dead easy to fix, or a big pain.
I have spare capacitors avail (that someone else bought as spares for me when I fixed their PSU capacitor issue). But without observing the fried bits, I dunno what I will be in for to fix a fritzed PSU if it got a short from the lid/whatever while in standby trying to change out the HDD :-)
Where are you, I am near Epping... oh, I tried to PM you but you haven't posted enough posts to allow me to PM you (silly restriction doing it that way, I can understand in the other direction).
Regards


Hi, Tony,

I am in Newtown - not too far away, I think. I also think I have posted enough to PM now, certainly should have with this one. I was hoping that the fix may be a simple item or two that need replacing, but I am fully prepared for it to be a right royal pain the the proverbial, too. The only thing the Toppy techies did was to confirm that there was, indeed, no power coming off the power supply circuit board; they did no testing other than that, so I can tell you no more. You would probably find out more things with a little probing via a voltmeter, I should think.

Anyway, I hope you can PM me now and hope to hear from you soon.

Cheers,

Al.

#14 audiohobbs

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Posted 14 February 2009 - 09:41 PM

Well, a rather enjoyable afternoon in the north-west resulted in a fully working Toppy, thanks to Tony. It is upgraded in GB and has uprated caps and should be good for a few more years now. Thanks, folks, for a speedy response to my cry for help; we love our Toppy and will be so pleased to get it back into the system tomorrow when the copy-over of files finally completes.

Thanks also to all those pioneers who go into operating on these devices to provide mere mortals like us with the information to improve on these fantastic items.

#15 Admiral

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Posted 15 February 2009 - 05:47 PM

Hi...sorry to post a newbie question here.

It's to do with recording Foxtel on a Topfield TF7100HDPVRt....

I've read all the forum topics about whether or not a PVR can accept output from a normal digital Foxtel box (i.e. not an IQ box), but they are all old posts.

I was in JB HiFi today, looking at a Topfield TF7100HDPVRt.

Since a normal digital Foxtel box can output via RF co-ax to a VCR, why can't the same lead be connected to one of the twin tuners on the Topfield PVR?

Thanks,
Admiral

#16 tonymy01

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Posted 15 February 2009 - 06:34 PM

Because digital PVRs have DVB-T tuners only, not analogue tuners (and the signal provided by the Fox box over the RF cable is simply decoded and RF modulated composite-yuk stereo material). You need something with an a/v input, like a DVD recorder. The Beyonwiz digital PVR has an optional A/V input (LiDiC required seperately for all Beyonwiz's except the P2 which is built in).
Regards

#17 pgdownload

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Posted 16 February 2009 - 08:02 AM

Since a normal digital Foxtel box can output via RF co-ax to a VCR, why can't the same lead be connected to one of the twin tuners on the Topfield PVR?Thanks, Admiral

One of the reasons PVRs work well is because they don't alter the signal that they receive. A digital broadcast is sent via the antenna

10100010101010010101010101001

and what is saved to the hard drive is an exact copy

10100010101010010101010101001

This stream of data is then processed by the PVRs chips to create an analogue version (of the digital data) that can be sent to any TV for viewing (ie a PVR translates the digital signal into a analogue one)

The output of a Foxtel box is an analogue signal (same as the output of a PVR is analogue) - because that's all that TVs understand. If you plug the output of a Foxtel box into a PVR then it doesn't know what to do with it as its trying to find 1s and 0s.

A DVD Recorder (or the BW P2 as mentioned) handles things a bit differently. It takes an analogue signal (eg broadcast or say from the Foxtel box) and it converts it into a digital one to store on its harddrive. Then it takes the digital stored version and converts it back to analogue to send to a TV for viewing.

So you would need to get say a BW P2 or just about any DVDR or an IQ if you want to record Foxtel. There is also the Panasonic BW300 DVDR/PVR which I believe can also record analogue inputs and is also a full twin digital Tuner PVR - look it up in the What PVR for you stickie here.

Regards

Peter Gillespie

#18 prl

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Posted 17 February 2009 - 09:57 AM

...
The output of a Foxtel box is an analogue signal (same as the output of a PVR is analogue) - because that's all that TVs understand. ...

That'll surprise everyone with a TV with HDMI input ;)

#19 pgdownload

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Posted 17 February 2009 - 11:36 AM

That'll surprise everyone with a TV with HDMI input ;)

I wonder if anyone would mention HDMI cables :). Suffice to say they're a special exception whereby the STB is basically a passive device, simply pulling the bit stream out of the broadcast signal and sending it wholess bowless direct to the TV in digital format. The TV then does all the work displaying it.

Regards

Peter Gillespie

#20 tiger77

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Posted 19 February 2009 - 03:22 PM

Hi, I am hoping someone can help me with a problem with my TF5000PVRt. Occasionally it would record a program of say 1 or two hours but only show it as being a few minutes long although it would play it back OK. Now on several occasions it has suddenly shown all of the recorded files as being of 0 MB long with the full hard disk capacity as being free. They were totally lost and it was not possible to replay them. Does anyone have any thoughts as to what might be wrong or is there an experienced Topfield enthusiast or technician in Melbourne who I could take the PVR to for them to look into this problem?
Thanks

#21 csdmac

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Posted 20 February 2009 - 10:13 PM

Hi Newbie here with a newbie question.
I picked a new Topfield 7050 today and have had a ball connecting it to a LCD HDtv tonight via the supplied HDMI cable. Everything seems fine except I am not getting any audio thru the HD channels, whereas audio seems fine thru SD channels.

Can anyone shed any light on this issue. Have I overlooked something or may there be a more serious issue?

Thanks in advance.
Cameron

#22 diesel

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 07:03 AM

Audio on SD channels is MPEG where as auio on HD channels is AC3 (Dolby).

Do you have a setting on your TV WRT audio setting preferences?
Also, check that the Toppy is not doing strange things to the audio stream via it's audio settings

#23 csdmac

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 04:12 PM

Thanks for your response Diesel.

I managed to solve the problems by trial and error ensuring it wasnt the HDMI cable. I ultimately fiddled with the audio settings on the TV and PVR(which i'm sure i had already done for no result) and sure enough I now have sound on the HD channels. I'm not sure if I have optimised the settings but I have audio and thats fine for the moment.

#24 diesel

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 06:05 PM

Once you get an AVR with 5.1/7.1 surround speakers then you can run Optical or HDMI to the AVR for the full sound experience....not that there is much FTA broadcast in DD5.1 still :angry:

#25 JKramer

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 11:28 PM

The FAQ link doesn't work.

I have Question: When you press Power during recording, does Topfield 7100 ask you to confirm shutdown
with options: Yes, No or Later?
On Beyonwiz PVR it gives you this "Later" option so it will power down after recording is finished.
(It's very handy with Harmony remotes where you can set power down sequence to Power+OK.)