View Full Version : Foxtel IQ DOWNGRADE what a piece of junk

11-04-2010, 11:24 AM
I have been a happy OzTivo owner for many years. I have a HD STB and a standard Foxtel Satellite box happily purring away.

Recently I found the number of recording conflicts starting to increase, especially with the padding required to get all the show on FTA channels, so I thought I would look at a Foxtel IQ with its dual tuners.

As it turned out there is a special running, and we actually got the IQ with free installation and more channels for less money than we were already paying, and there was an installation slot available the next Saturday. So we signed up.

My plan was to reduce the OzTivo’s role to just FTA and let the IQ do all the Foxtel and some FTA as well, perhaps eventually I would not need the OzTivo at all.

I also made the assumption that the IQ would provide similar functionality to what I was used to with the OzTivo........ How wrong I was.

To be frank, the IQ user interface is complete rubbish. The ancient TiVo S1 craps all over it and from a great height as well. The simplest of functions in the TiVo like searching by title is not available in the IQ. It has no sense of a seasons pass manager and the useless “series link” system is not even available on all shows. I can’t say it strongly enough, compared to OzTivo IQ is really really really bad.

I can only imagine how good the current generation of TiVo’s must be if the S1 still holds up so well.

Well as the depression was starting to really set in, I thought I would just go back to configuring my system the way it was with just the IQ STB in place of the old Foxtel STB. However I can’t seem to find a reliable IR set for the IQ (Pace TDS480NF).

This is one of the worst decisions I have made, and I can’t think of a configuration that will return me to the bliss that is OzTivo. All other solutions are either FTA only or Foxtel only there is nothing I have found that does both with a good (as good as TiVo) user interface.

So before I jump off a cliff, does anybody have any ideas?



12-04-2010, 11:24 PM
You should can ask for an extra STB (~$15/m from memory).


13-04-2010, 09:42 AM
Hi Rohan,

The converter I make up for the Austar Flinders box may work with the Foxtel IQ box.....it works on Mystar and MystarHD. It just needs a small solder jumper added to configure Foxtel mode. If the remote looks like this:

http://i.ebayimg.com/21/!BYMqHyQBmk~$(KGrHgoOKjcEjlLmYj(RBKgP8PP0nw~~_35.J PG

Then the converter should work OK... at least to change channels. If the remote is the newer grey unit, then I'm not sure, but we could find out. The best way to confirm that the converter would work is to get hold of a remote as pictured, and try it out. If you can't borrow one from a friend / relative etc , let me know and I'll post one for you to try....if you want to.

There is some background about the converter here:


Hope that is of some help.



13-04-2010, 08:32 PM
Thanks for the replies chaps.

Firstly a bit of an update, the day after writing the original post I went and bought a new HD Tivo. I got it for a really good price of $590 for the 320GB unit.

I realise (and as my wife pointed out several times) I could have just used my existing S1 and my FTA STB, but I still wanted to solve the recording conflicts problem and the new TiVo has dual tuners.

Anyway of course I was stoked with the new Tivo, but I still hate the IQ.

I am very interested in your solution Bruce, but after reading the thread you posted, I don't really understand the solution (I have no experience with Austar, Flinders or Mystar). Could you spell it out a bit for me please, I am very technical in both hardware and software, so use as many technical terms as you like.

As for the remote, it is not the same as the one pictured. It is close, but the IQ version has more buttons and sends different codes to the standard foxtel digital remote.



16-04-2010, 08:45 AM
Hi Rohan,

Glad you have things sorted out.

The converter that I make is basically a stripped down version of the Philips remote control pictured, but it also contains a seperate microprocessor to recieve IR data from the TiVo......it then uses the Sony data to resend the command in the correct format for the pay TV box.

What basically happens, is you set the TiVo (Series 1) to output SONY format remote control commands (this is done in guided setup), plug the converter into the IR port on the back of the TiVo, then stick the IR Blaster (IR Emitter) on the front of the Pay TV STB. The TiVo will send commands as if it was controlling a Sony device, and the converter decodes these, and resends the command in a format that will work with the Pay TV STB (the converter only sends 0-9 digits).

The reason that this has been necessary, was due the the newer Australian pay TV boxes using a IR protocol that the TiVo is unable to learn and reproduce correctly. The commands sent from the remote contains a toggle bit, which changes with every key stroke. The protocol itself is also protected under an NDA by Philips.

So what I was saying in the first post was that if you are able to try a Austar remote on the IQ box, and if at least the 0-9 digits change channels correctly.....then the converter will work OK with the IQ box.

Hope that makes sense.



17-04-2010, 08:27 AM
Ok, I understand now.

I was thinking along the same lines, as I have written sony IR decoding software before for another project.

Your solution is quite clever in that you just transpose the chip from the remote.

Given the IQ remote looks similar, I pulled apart one of mine only to find the IC is one of those blobs on a board jobs and impossible to remove.

I could trace out the keyboard matrix and then chop off the part of the board that contains the IC and wire it in that way, but right now I have too much on my plate.

So I guess it will all depend on how much that IQ crappy interface bugs me (which right now is a lot) to see if it gets pushed up the list a bit.

Thanks for your advice.



03-06-2010, 10:24 PM
Well it turns out the useless IQ interface is so bad I had to do something about it.

I contacted Bruce and obtained one of his converter boards. I couldn't use it directly, as the IQ remote has a chip that can't be removed, so I adapted it to drive the remote directly via an interface board.

It has been running for a few hours now and so far it's great, and finally I have my old TiVo interface back.

I'm happy, the wife is happy and I even worked out I can get the second IQ tuner into play (with some caveats) when needed.