I got a HDRM7250 earlier today. After a few hours of trying it, I can report the following: -
Firstly, the remote controller is similar to the ITVD500 model. It is now black with some extra keys on it.
When first switched on, a message appears that tests the HDTV mode (connected via HDMI to my Samsung screen). It will cycle through the HD modes until you decide to keep one. A message then appears that the drive is checking and you are guided through the set-up process. For those of you with an ITVD500, you'd seen this step-by-step before. It's similar.
When finished tuning, the digital television is ready for use.
The menu system and on screen graphics are nice, and in some ways similar to the ITVD500 but with a black square theme. The EPG is a new type (its like box view) and has the ability to select record and give reminders. As the manual states, you cannot do two that overlap.
I connected my ethernet cable to the box and my router. Immediately, a message appears momentarily that I am 'connected with ethernet.' Another message also appeared something like 'software available go to channel 999.' It only appears for 2 seconds then disappears.
When I typed channel 999, it tells me that I can activate interactive stuff and that my software requires updating. I select update and within seconds, the software for my set-top box begins to download. This takes around 5 minutes; box restarts back where you were last.
Next was to try the timeshift. If I hit rewind (<<), it will go x1, x3, x10, x30, x100, x600. But here is where it becomes even more interesting. I was rewinding the picture back even when changing channels and the program names are kept for the past 4 hours. This is great.
Press REC and you have two options (auto & manual). The timeshift buffer can be recorded no problems. Whilst in timeshift move the joystick up/down for 30 sec. skips. Move left/right for 15 minute jumps.
The automatic option stops the recording at the end of the program+5min. There is also a manual option that I guess you'd use if there is something wrong in the broadcast. From what I could make out, you can record and watch another channel or play a media file simultaneously.
If you press the list key it shows all the digital channels. I found that if you press the >> key, it will then show you the radio channels, recordings, interactive channels.
On the menu, there are a few options shown. One of which is Mediaplayer-HD.
On a USB hard-drive, I have put some WMV-HD files on it, some downloads (XviD's off the net) and some Apple Quicktime MOV files. The WMV and MOV's are 1080p! When connected, the Mediaplayer shows the USB drive as SDA1. All the 1080p HD examples I downloaded played and look great.
One of the other menu options is 'My Recordings'. This is a list of the recordings but there is an option down the bottom called EXPORT CONFIG. Press the blue key and a screen is shown to enter the ip address or hostname of your pc, share folder name, username and password. Without reading the instructions I was confused how to get this to work.
I typed the ipaddress of my lan-drive, and entered the sharefolder as public. Pressed the yellow key to test and passed. That means the stb supports SAMBA/SMB share folders. This is brilliant as it means I can have a network drive to export recordings too without the need of a PC turned on.
The lan-drive also appears in the Mediacenter. I now have access to the recording I transferred and other music and video files directly from my network drive. I can select the recording (it is a .MP2 file) and play it over the network in HD and pause, forward, rewind, etc. over my network as if it was on the hard-drive inside the set-top box.
As it is exporting, beside the name of the file is a percentage. Once you set-it just let it go. It'll do it in the background and you can continue to watch tv etc.
One of the other experiments I tried is if you can you run files from a http server (i.e. Apache installed on a PC) like the ITVD500. That also works and shows a directory listing on your TV screen of your files.
Still experimenting with this unit, so I will give more details soon.
So far everything is working as per the manual.
I disagree with Paranoid666 comments that the recording function is stupid. The fact that their is an immediate option to record and stop at the end of the program is great. My previous PVR would default to just 3 hours and then you'd have to go back and extend or reduce it manually. Also to stop a recording, my previous PVR had to press STOP and then OK or EXIT to choose. This unit I press REC and then select the STOP option. What's the difference, either way there are still two key presses for every PVR. I guess different manufacturers have their own way of doing the same job?
Also, whilst in timeshift, press REC and then select manual recording. You are now recording the timeshift buffer. You can FFWD at 600x (5min/sec) whilst recording the buffer.