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Weaknees Wizard - New DirecTV

HR20 / HR21 / HR22 / HR23 / HR24 / HR21 Pro DIRECTV HD DVR FAQ

Which units can use external storage?
What are the base capacities of the HR20/HR21/HR21P and how many hours can the HR20-700, HR20-100, HR21-100, HR21-200, HR21-700, HR22, HR23, HR24 and HR21P record?
Do you offer hard drive upgrade kits for the HR20/HR21/HR21P?
If you upgrade my HR20/HR21/HR21 Pro, can you move my settings and programming to the new drive?
Can I run an HR20/HR21/HR21P with two drives?
What is the warranty on HR20/HR21/HR21 Pro complete units and upgrades?
Can I purchase / own the HR20/HR21 DIRECTV Plus HD DVR, or will any order from weaKnees be considered a lease?
Can I purchase / own the HR21 Pro HD DVR, or will any order from weaKnees be considered a lease?
Should I even bother trying to have my HR20/HR21 characterized as owned?
Does the HR20/HR21/HR21P have the TiVo operating system? Can I get an HR20/HR21/HR21P with the TiVo operating system.
What are the differences between the HR10-250 TiVo and the HR20/HR21/HR21P DIRECTV Plus HD DVR?
What are the model numbers of the DIRECTV HD DVRs?
What are the differences between the HR20 (HR20-100/HR20-700) and the HR21 (HR21-100/HR21-700)?
What about external storage for HR20 and HR21 DVRs?



Which units can use external storage?
The DVRs that we support can currently use external storage: The TiVo HD, TiVo Series3, and DirecTV Plus HD DVR (all versions). We also sell all of these DVRs already expanded with larger internal drives.

What are the base capacities of the HR20/HR21/HR21P and how many hours can the HR20-700, HR20-100, HR21-100, HR21-200, HR21-700, HR22, HR23, HR24 and HR21P record?
All HR20/HR21 units have a 300gb or 320gb hard drive (earlier versions have the 300; later versions the 320) from the factory. The HR21P (HR21 Pro) and HR22-24 have 500GB drives from the factory. The 320GB unit can record up to 30 hours of HD (in MPEG2); up to 50 hours of HD (in MPEG4); and up to 200 hours of standard definition. The 500GB HR21P can record up to 100 hours in HD (MPEG4) and up to 65 hours in HD (MPEG2). Keep in mind that "up to" really does indicate a maximum capacity. If you are recording shows with a lot of movement (sports, action, cartoons), you are likely to max out at fewer hours.

Do you offer hard drive upgrade kits for the HR20/HR21/HR21P?
Yes. See our HR20/HR21 DIRECTV Upgrage page. weaKnees upgrades the HR20/HR21 by removing the factory drive and replacing it with a larger drive. If you have an HR20/HR21 that you want upgraded, you can send the unit to us for an upgrade. The pricing for an upgrade includes installation charges and the cost of ground shipping from us back to you. Turnaround time for the upgrade is generally 1-2 business days.

If you don't have the unit already, then the easiest and fastest solution is just to get an upgraded HR20 / HR21 / HR21 Pro from us.

If you upgrade my HR20/HR21/HR21 Pro, can you move my settings and programming to the new drive?
Yes, we can now do this. See our copy services on the appropriate page.

Can I run an HR20/HR21/HR21P with two drives?
No, this is not possible. However, we currently have single drives as large as 1,000GB (1 terabyte).

What is the warranty on HR20/HR21/HR21 Pro complete units and upgrades?
Complete upgraded HR20s/HR21s/HR21Ps from weaKnees have a 90-day parts/labor warranty from weaKnees on all parts. Complete upgraded HR20s/HR21s/HR21Ps have a 180-day parts/labor warranty on the upgraded hard drive. During the warranty period, weaKnees will repair or replace a faulty unit/hard drive, subject to our warranty terms. If your unit (or a part) fails outside of the warranty period, weaKnees will work with your to get the unit replaced at a fair and reasonable price. If weaKnees upgrades an HR20/HR21/HR21P you ordered elsewhere, we will warrant the hard drive for 180-days. In the event of a drive failure, you would send the entire unit to us and we would perform the work and ship the unit back. We pay for shipping from us back to you.

Can I purchase / own the HR20/HR21 DIRECTV Plus HD DVR, or will any order from weaKnees be considered a lease?
Background: On March 1, 2006, DIRECTV instituted a program under which receivers are leased by default. This change had no impact on customers' bills, and in fact there were many advantages for customers: DIRECTV will provide a dish and installation for customers with new leased receivers. They will also provide support, after the warranty period, at reduced prices vs. the cost of acquiring a new unit. On the other hand, leased receivers cannot be re-sold and DIRECTV will replace them with refurbished units if they require service.

If you order an upgraded HR20/HR21 from weaKnees, you may be able to have DIRECTV characterize the unit as being owned. To do that, you must call 800-DIRECTV and ask for the access card department. Tell them that you ordered an HR20/HR21, give them the price and tell them that you want it to be characterized as being owned. In some cases, the price alone will be enough to have DIRECTV characterize the unit as purchased. IMPORTANT NOTE: If you have a unit characterized as owned, you will NOT be able to get the unit (or a dish) installed for free or at a discounted price. In addition, you will NOT be entitled to any discounted replacement equipment should the unit fail. See below for additional information.

Can I purchase / own the HR21 Pro HD DVR, or will any order from weaKnees be considered a lease?
The HR21P (HR21 Pro) will be considered owned, not leased.

Should I even bother trying to have my HR20/HR21 characterized as owned?
If you need an HR20/HR21 installed, or if you need a dish, then you should probably have the box characterized as being leased. Doing so will enable you to take advantage of DIRECTV's installation promotions for newly-activated equipment. In addition, if your upgraded HR20/HR21 fails in the future, you may be eligible for a reduced-price replacement unit if the upgraded HR20/HR21 is leased. You will likely not want to send the upgraded HR20/HR21 to DIRECTV in exchange for the replacement, but weaKnees can help get a working hard drive moved. If you successfully have your HR20 characterized as owned, you will not be entitled to any discounted replacement unit and you will be responsible for paying to have your unit (and dish) installed.

Does the HR20/HR21/HR21P have the TiVo operating system? Can I get an HR20/HR21/HR21P with the TiVo operating system.
No, it does not, and there is no way to modify the HR20/HR21/HR21P to have it run the TiVo operating system.

What are the differences between the HR10-250 TiVo and the HR20/HR21/HR21P DIRECTV Plus HD DVR?
There are many differences; the units run on completely different operating systems. They have different remotes. We would recommend that you read our comparison of the R10 TiVo and the R15 DIRECTV Plus DVR, since the R15 and HR20/HR21, on one hand, and the R10 and HR10, on the other hand, use similar operating systems (TiVo in the case of the R10/HR10 and DIRECTV's home-grown OS in the case of the R15/HR20).

What are the model numbers of the DIRECTV HD DVRs?
As of now, there are three main categories of DIRECTV DVRs with high definition: (1) the TiVo HR10-250, (2) the DIRECTV Plus HD DVR (which consists of the HR20 and HR21), and (3) the HR21P (HR21 Pro). While the "250" in the HR10-250 refers to the size of that unit's factory hard drive, the HR20-100, HR20-700, HR21-100 and HR21-700 (or any other number after the HR20- or HR21-) refers to the manufacturer of that particular HR20/HR21, as well as some internal differences (but no actual functional difference). The HR10-250 and HR20-700 are both silver, and the HR21-100/HR21-200/HR21-700 are black. The HR21P (HR21 Pro) is also black. Furthermore, the HR21 series lacks off-air antenna inputs, while the HR20 does support off-air channels. The HR21P has various additional features geared toward the home theater market (such as rack-mountable brackets, serial control, and dual-fans).

What are the differences between the HR20 (HR20-100/HR20-700) and the HR21 (HR21-100/HR21-700)?
The HR20 is silver; the HR21 is black. The HR20 has off-air antenna inputs, the HR21 does not. You can ignore the -100 and the -700; that simply determines the factory in which the unit was built. DIRECTV has previously announced an HR21-pro version for home theaters. The HR21-100 and HR21-700 are different from the pro version . The footprint of the HR20 and the HR21 is the same.

What about external storage for HR20 and HR21 DVRs?
WeaKnees.com sells and supports external storage upgrades for the DirecTV HD DVR models HR20, HR21 (all versions of both models) and HR21P. External storage on these units replaces the existing internal drive, so the unit will then ignore the internal drive. This means that whatever size drive is in the unit won't matter; the DVR will use the external drive exclusively. Therefore, there is currently no way to get more than one Terabyte of storage on these units.

There are pros and cons of external storage, and overall, as with all DVRs, WeaKnees recommends internal storage upgrades as the preferred method in general. But some situations demand external storage on these units.

Pros: Essentially, the reason to get external storage on these units is because you already have the box, you don't want the downtime of sending the box in to us for the upgrade, and you need more space.

Cons: Having an external unit makes the physical setup that much more complicated with extra cables, extra heat, and extra power demands. Since the storage is external, you have more potential points of failure.


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