Thursday, 21 October 2010

Emprex ME1 evaluation diary: Day Three

There's an Emprex help forum but it seems there's no company engineers involved; it's merely a bunch of people who possess the item and who seek to help fellow-sufferers by sharing experiences and advice. A bit like a victim support group, for people who have been beaten up in the street!

Shoddy product?

Reading the forum pleas for assistance make me wonder whether the product is poorly designed and well built, or excellently designed and badly built. Of course, it might be badly designed and badly built, for all I know. I certainly won't buy an Emprex product again, for as long as I live.

Clearly, a good tip before buying a product is to look on the Internet and see what level of support there is. Search for Emprex complaints, or something. Had I done my homework before paying out good money, I wouldn't have gone ahead.

Still no word from Emprex themselves, so I'm now reformatting the hard drive. It's a bit drastic, but sometimes a completely fresh start is the best solution.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Emprex ME1 evaluation diary: Day One

The Emprex ME1 is a digital media player / recorder; in effect, a kind of digital video recorder that "tapes" TV and audio to hard drive.

Got mine today, and plugged it in.

First recording was a 2-minute portion of BBC News 24, via my Sky box. Hit pause, and the unit promptly gave me an I/O Error - that is, an input/output error, and then said loading....

Five minutes later, it was still "loading" (loading what?) and the power button wouldn't let me do a reset, so I pulled the plug for a cold restart. OK, first impression is, reminds me of Windows 95!

Second recording (a 3-min clip of news) went OK, and I then saved it to the FAT32 area of the hard drive. And found I could watch it back on my computer, so that was fine: that's exactly what I wanted.

Third recording lost all colour after a minute. Was the Emprex recording in black-and-white or was this merely a display issue? It turns out the colour loss had actually happened at the time - as playback of the offending item showed the moment it had happened.

I've found the colour loss issue can be reversed by pulling the power lead out, just like the old days of a Windows 95 freeze-up. But naturally, I'd like to avoid this absurdity happening in the future.

Two more tests, and the same thing happened: the display jumps to monochrome (black-and-white).

Consulted Emprex FAQs and the support site, and could find nothing on this problem, so messaged Emprex support through their site. And thus Day One of the trial concludes.

To be continued..........