: Gateway pre-purchase questions
2011-10-07, 12:46 AM
I looked and didnt see a topic for this and didnt think in the update code thread was the best as I didnt want to muddy it up.
But I was wondering, is the gateway worth getting? I am seeing the update threads and I see nothing but troubles with the system. It sounds like it has a lot of problems and goods odds I will miss atleast some of the programs I set to record for one reason or another.
So I have to ask, is it worth getting yet? Does anybody have very positive reviews of the gateway system? I really would like one, but if it means some recordings will be lost or not record, or no sound etc, its just not worth it and stick with my current pvr for now.
2011-10-07, 11:59 AM
I for one am going to hold off for a bit longer.
I just got my DCX3400s to be relatively stable again and I don't want any hassles for a while. Even if I do get a Gateway and a Portal, I would hold off trading in the two DCX3400s for Portals 2 and 3 until the Gateway/Portal system stabilizes and I have finished watching the recordings on the two DCX3400s.
2011-10-07, 12:24 PM
There is a lot of us for which it works great. I have yet to have it mess up a recording (though I only watch a few a week), and last night was the first time since the new code that I had the audio go out; a simple switch to digital and back to Dolby solved it. My Dad still has one TV that's not on a digital box; with the new pricing I'll probably suggest to him that he switch over to the new offer.
2011-10-07, 12:26 PM
You apparently like some of the new features the Gateway offers and you're asking "is it worth getting", but I think the question you want answered is: "is the Gateway stable now?"
2011-10-07, 03:06 PM
Well is it?
pwh2112, see for yourself in this thread (http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=145709) which discusses the latest update.
2011-10-07, 03:38 PM
Well I think you kinda see a one sided story in the update thread. You dont see as many people coming in there a talking if all is working fine(which is why I started a new thread). :)
So I know it is not completely stable, so I guess the worth it question comes from figuring out if many people had mostly stable experiences or not(thanks flash for your experience). Finding out if the cons are outweighing the pros for the users or not. I know only I can decide that, but just wanted to see thoughts from others outside of the issues thread.
2011-10-07, 07:25 PM
We'll know when Gateway is stable/worth it when Shaw starts actively advertising it. Until then I'm staying away.
2011-10-07, 07:30 PM
They started actively advertise it, saw a commercial for it during yesterday's Canuck's game. But it was already ready for use, as I said many of us are having no issues, and for those with issues many are minor ones that are more pet peeves. The reason for not actively advertising it was because it was only in select areas; as of 2 days ago it is now available everywhere and thus the advertising has started.
2011-10-07, 08:09 PM
The complaints in the thread that Hugh mentioned really are an indication of problems. Granted, there may be many units out there which work and people aren't going to write in spontaneously to say so, but there will also be a large number of people out there with problems who do not write in this forum either.
In contrast, for example, the MTS forum is almost deathly quiet - very few complaints reported, very few problems occurring.
When the buzz here about a platform dies down to almost nothing, then it will have reached stability.
2011-10-07, 08:10 PM
Hugh posted a link for info and there is also a thread that compares Gateway and Mediaroom.
I don't want to overlap those threads so I'll briefly tell you my experiences with Gateway:
6 Tuners to record from
Ability to watch any recorded program on any tv with a portal
Getting used to new interface and remote although you can setup a Harmony to work with it
Some people have had a problem with recordings going missing, but I have had no such problem.
Once in awhile you get a black screen saying you don't subscribe to this channel, but if you change the channel and go back that usually takes care of it.
I personally love the system. I have had few problems with it and most are minor and a matter of getting used to new commands.
However, as you will read in the linked threads, some people have had a very bad experience and there seems to be no catagorical reason why.
My advice to you is, if you want to take advantage of the new technology and want the ability to record a lot of things at one time, then do it.
If you don't really care about how many tuners you have or having one central PVR to pull from, then stick with what you have.
There are problems with all hardware, in fact I had more trouble with my DCX3400's than I have ever had with the portals, so don't let that sway you. There's also been a firmware update that has helped with some of the problems people were experiencing and another is on the way at some point.
Hope this helps.
2011-10-07, 09:53 PM
You can put me on the list of people with very few problems or glitches. The unit is every bit as stable as the Motorola DCT/DCX units I replaced. I would therefore recommend it without much hesitation. Then again, if I were experiencing problems, I might not be so enthusiastic.
2011-10-09, 02:36 AM
I believe that it will be some time before the GW system is "stable". The code updates seem to fix some problems and cause others - as seen in the diverse reports here.That said, I don't believe it's due entirely to the system being defective. More that there are many variables involved in the installation. Once there is enough data on what works best in different situations I think you'll see a much better user experience.
I also suspect that in at least some of the cases of "system issues", the real issue is that the new system works differently (in particular the remote) and as such is more of a "user problem" in trying to find their way around. To this end, I think the user manual could have been much more usefull if it had more detail. In particular more diagnostic info would be nice. Nothing bugs me more than a system which gives me a cryptic error code that, had I been able to find out what it meant I could have fixed myself without having to call the support line - only to have them tell me to "reboot"!!
So for me, I like it - even with the flaws seen at present. Not sure it's right for everyone though - depends on your needs and "pain" threshold:D
2011-10-09, 09:41 PM
Being a lurker and a potential Gateway user, I am very intrigued by the varied gateway experiences ranging from minor inconveniences to horrendous problems.
As Arris is known to be a reputable manufacturer, it seems strange that there seems to be a lot of intermittent issues stemming from gateway or portal not recognizing the signals from Shaw mother-ship in a lot of cases, which seems to reset it self
That leaves us to theorized that signal strength may be one of the possible root causes for the Gateway and portals current issues ie some users had lower signals strength than others due to their geographical locations.
I am very interested to find out if those users who are facing more problems than others are located in certain geographical pockets while those with minor or no problems may be enjoying more than average signal strength in certain areas....
....it would be nice if this forum can have a polling feature whereby gateway users can voluntarily answer the poll and we can establish if there is a geographical pattern to the occurrences, frequency and severity of the gateway issues. This type of user poll may be valuable to Shaw to focus on their network if a geographical pattern started to emerge. Or perhaps, the signal strength may be affected by in-house splitting and wiring as well?
I may be way off base here.. but just a gut feeling.... I have no stats or scientific proof for the above theory.. what do you all think?
I am looking forward to embrace the gateway but have a stern warning from my wife that if I switched to gateway, I will be totally responsible and be in deep do do if she misses recording her soap opera. I will suffer punishment big time...
2011-10-09, 10:37 PM
Ric01, look at the list of fixes (http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?p=1324303) that the most recent firmware update resolved and you will realize that the issues had/have nothing to do with signal strength, and certainly not due to geographic location.
It does appear that fixes for issues seem to be coming faster than in the past for the Pace and Motorola boxes, so that is a hopeful sign.
2011-10-09, 10:40 PM
Thanks for the responses so far all!
"I am looking forward to embrace the gateway but have a stern warning from my wife that if I switched to gateway, I will be totally responsible and be in deep do do if she misses recording her soap opera. I will suffer punishment big time... "
LOL I am in the same boat which is why I asked. My wife would kill me if I screw up a recording of Castle. :)
2011-10-09, 11:56 PM
Yeah GPman.. do not want the gateway to be a potential of break up of my marriage... I have not sign any pre-nup
Thanks Kritiker for your insight.. good points ! I will keep monitoring this forum
2011-10-10, 01:17 AM
Hopefully I'm not jinxing myself :)
I still have the Moto on line, but have used it only once or twice early on after getting the Gateway (very early).
Have gotten used to making do with my few dislikes, I.e. lack of reminders, and a few others. Have decided that the plus outweighs the minus so we've been putting up with the occasional (very few) reboots and the occasional channel up/down to thaw the portal after a freeze.
I have quite a few recordings setup and sofar have not been surprised/disappointed by missed recordings. Of course I don't watch everything thing I PVR as now with 6 tuners I record quite a bit "just in case" I want to watch later. It's nice not to have to decide on what to record, just record it all :)
The system could be a little snappier, but hopefully that'll come. Getting more comfortable with the remote and guide. Overall sufficiently happy and not regretting having taken the early plunge.
2011-10-10, 01:41 AM
hwitten, Can you share what some of the other dislikes you have and anything else you can think it is lacking? I never used the reminders function so no loss to me, but I had no idea that was missing and not sure what else may be missing. Thanks!
2011-10-10, 03:03 AM
These are my original beefs, that still exist.
Current Channel should display on Portal instead of Time
Sleep Mode off option
Program Reminder for live viewing fans
Text size in guide too small
Closed caption is either on or off instead of also on when on Mute. Handy when phone rings.
These are all features we used with old and now miss.
One hopes to add features on upgrades rather than having to compromise.
The reminder is what I miss most as I like watching TV Live. To me, PVR is for convenience, like recording when 2 or more shows are on at same time or when away from TV.