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TF5800 manual: troubleshooting

Troubleshooting and How to

In this section, you can find a summary of solutions to some common problems and some useful tips.


Although your Topfield PVR is a reliable piece of equipment, sometimes you may experience problems. To assist you, here are some common solutions to problems.

Unexpected channel changes

From time to time, your PVR may interrupt playback or viewing, and change to live TV, or display a message stating “Check your reservation.”

If a Check your reservation message is displayed, you should select Yes and then press OKOK/List, or just wait, to allow the recording to take place; the channel will change so that a recording can begin. If you choose no, the recording will not happen.

Whenever playback of a recording is interrupted, the PVR places a bookmark which you can jump back to.

Some third party TAPs can automatically return you to your playback or previous viewing, however these are not supported by Topfield.

Failed recordings

The most common cause of failed recordings is a problem with the signal from your TV aerial. You must make sure that you have connected the system correctly, following the instructions at the start of this manual.

If you see a message stating “No signal at tuner 1” or “No signal at tuner 2,” then it is likely that one of the tuners has not been connected, or the connection has come undone.

If all the connections are ok, you may have too low a signal level for the PVR to work reliably, and you should consult an aerial specialist; it may be necessary to adjust your aerial to work correctly with digital television.

Another cause of recording problems is reception of the same channel from several transmitters; this is dealt with below, under the heading Incorrect channel numbers

If your PVR fails to start up for scheduled recordings, you may need to reset the clock. To do this, unplug the PVR from the electricity supply for approximately one minute, then plug it back in again. The time will be reset when the PVR starts up and receives a TV signal. Turning the PVR off with the remote control or the button on the front panel is not sufficient.

PVR crashes

Your TF5800 is a sophisticated computer, and like all computers, it can crash from time to time, though it’s extremely rare. In most cases, when the PVR crashes, it is caused by add-on software (TAPs) that has been loaded.

You can start the PVR without any TAPs running by holding down the 0 buttonZeroon the remote control while you start the system, until the picture has appeared. You should then open the Archive list, and move to the ProgramFiles section by pressing Fast ForwardFast Forwardor RewindRewind. Open the Auto Start folder, and either delete the applications contained in it, or move them to the main ProgramFiles folder, so that they do not run when the PVR is turned on.

Although interactive services are useful, they too are, essentially, computer programs that are delivered to your PVR via the digital television signal, and it is possible, though extremely rare, for them to cause problems. Should you suspect that this is the case, you should try disabling interactive services via the System Setting menu.

Incorrect channel numbers and duplicate channels

If you can receive a signal from more than one TV transmitter, your PVR may store duplicate versions of some channels. In some cases, duplicates will appear on numbers from 1000 upwards, while other users may have two channels with the same number.

If you have two channels with the same number, and one of them has a very weak signal, you should delete the one with the weaker signal; press the OK/List button OK/Listto display the channel list, highlight the channel you want to remove, and press Red to display a menu, from which you can select the Delete option.

You can view information about the strength and quality of a signal by changing to a channel, then pressing Menu and selecting Installation, then Service Search. Details of the signal on the current channel will be displayed at the bottom right of the screen.

Users with many duplicate channels, or incorrectly numbered channels, should perform a factory reset of their PVR, and then tune in channels manually, instead of automatically.

To tune manually, you need to know which transmitter your aerial is pointing at, and the UHF channel numbers (which are always in the range 21-69) that are used for digital television; there will normally be six numbers, one for each ‘multiplex,’ though in some regions there may be fewer.

Press Menu, then from the main menu select Installation, Service Search. Set the search mode to Manual, and set the channel number to the first of the group of UHF channel numbers appropriate to your local TV transmitter, then move to Start Search and press OK.

The PVR will store all the digital television channels broadcast on the channel you selected. Now, repeat the process for each of the other UHF channel numbers, and your PVR should store one copy of each channel, on the correct number.

Unable to view Pay TV channels

To view Pay TV channels, you must have a CAM inserted in one of the slots on the front of the PVR, with a valid subscription card in it.

If you are unable to view any channels at all, check that the card has been inserted the correct way up; ensure that the contacts on it are clean.

You can view the status of the CAM – which is used to decode Pay TV channels – by pressing Menu then selecting Common Interface. If the CAM has been inserted correctly, it will be shown in one of the slots; if no CAMs show on the screen, check it is inserted fully.

If the CAM is shown on the screen, select it, and then press OKOK/Liston the remote control. On the next screen, the Smart card information option will tell you the subscription date that is stored on your card. If there is no date, or the date has passed, then you will need to contact your PayTV service and ask them to send you an activation signal.

Some recordings made from PayTV channels may not be playable without a subscription, or after some time has elapsed. Section 4, Extra features, Copying recordings contains information about how you may be able to avoid this problem.

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