expected lifetime of HW180STB boxes?

Support and Discussion for Homeworx HW130STB and HW180STB

expected lifetime of HW180STB boxes?

Postby RichE » December 5th, 2017, 9:55 pm

I seem to be having problems with longevity on the HW180STB boxes I've purchased new. Max I've gotten is latest failure of 2.5 years, previous one (I have two on two TVs) about 2 years.

A friend, who is where I got the info on this nifty box, has had two fail at 13 months!

Is this typical? They're not in some overheated area (like just above TV vents, etc., one was on an LCD TV so little to no heat). Boxes are horizontal, no blockage/dust of the vents.

I just had another fail (other failed about a month ago).

Is the 150 with metal housing more reliable? Or the 220?

Anyone else having issues with these failing every 2 years or so? I've had many computers that worked 10+ years without a problem.

Would Mediasonic like me to mail (at my cost) my old box (not sure I have both but can send both if I do) to them for diagnosis and letting me know just what's failing, perhaps the same thing/weak point that should be fixed?

Thanks.
RichE
 
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Joined: July 8th, 2015, 10:36 am

Re: expected lifetime of HW180STB boxes?

Postby eherberg » December 6th, 2017, 10:31 pm

You don't say what you are using for a hard drive - but if you are using the usb port to power it, note the meager power supply of 800 mA that is available. A 3.5" drive will certainly put more strain on power drawn. Even a 2.5" drive will have an initial power need of 1000+ on spin-up before setting into a 500 mA power need.

These type of boxes also typically have a failure point of 2 years due to bad capacitors. If you open up the box and look for bulging capacitors, you may be able to see one. Depending on your soldering skills, you could resurrect the box by unsoldering the bad capacitor and soldering in a new one.
eherberg
 
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Re: expected lifetime of HW180STB boxes?

Postby RichE » December 7th, 2017, 3:00 am

NO external hard drive, I use USB Flash drives for recording/time shifting so little to no load there, thanks.

I'll have to take a look inside and see if I spot any bad caps, thanks for the suggestion. If I find any, and can resurrect the box, I'll post here.

Very disappointing to have them fail regularly in a year or two, maybe I should get the $8 square trade 4 year warranty on the one I just ordered. I got the 150 as it's apparently the same as the 180, but with metal box and front USB (easier for me with flash drives. vs. external hard drive). Maybe it'll stay cooler/have the caps last longer?
RichE
 
Posts: 8
Joined: July 8th, 2015, 10:36 am

Re: expected lifetime of HW180STB boxes?

Postby eherberg » December 7th, 2017, 9:53 am

For what it's worth, my current HW150 is going fine at about the 11 month mark. I'm not too bent out of shape on the lifetime of the boxes. It's not just Mediasonic -- any of the MStar-based boxes are about the same, with slight firmware differences between them. I do think the top two are the Mediasonic boxes and Iview -- with a slight edge to Mediasonic for having the more reliable firmware. Given the price point of these boxes, I just grabbed a couple. If the first one goes within the next year, I'll just cycle it's backup into service.

On a side-note: The newest player in these MStar boxes is the Terk Tunvr1 box. However, Terk has priced it around $50 US - which is a bit more than most price it. Plus, their firmware has apparently eliminated the media playback capabilities of the box - which seems bizarre to me. It can record and playback recordings -- but apparently they don't want you to play any of your existing mkv or mp4 files -- and raised the price on their MStar box for that privilege.
eherberg
 
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Re: expected lifetime of HW180STB boxes?

Postby RichE » December 7th, 2017, 1:57 pm

Thanks for that info!
RichE
 
Posts: 8
Joined: July 8th, 2015, 10:36 am


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