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by Mike Zazaian September 26, 2006 - 12:26pm, No Comments

A TiVo Series3 unit

Despite the fact that the HD-ready TiVo Series3 is geared toward an elite market of Plasma and HDTV owners, users have reported plasma screen signals interfering with TiVo remotes, rendering them almost completely useless.

Because plasma screens put out a significant amount of EMI and RFI signals, they can cause substantial interference with infrared devices. The IR receiver on the Series3 box, however, is especially sensitive to the signals, allowing a plasma screen anywhere near the box to completely block out connection from a remote control.

Owners of the next-gen TiVo Series3, which runs about $800 retail, have reported that when using the devices on plasma TVs, buttons on the remote won’t register unless pressed ten to fifteen times. As a significant portion of Series3 buyers are also plasma screen owners, the problem is much greater than it would be with other electronic systmes. TiVo, however, has offered no solution for the problem.

Being the diehard media center renegades that they are, however, TiVo users experiencing the problem have taken matters into their own hands. Some have constructed makeshift signal blockers around the Series3 infrared receiver out of cardboard or other materials to screen out the erratic plasma signals while still allowing remote control usage. Some more daring Series3 owners have devised a solution whereby removing the faceplate, six to eight layers of plastic wrap are placed over the infrared receiver. The result is similar to the cardboard solution, but without an unsightly cardboard piece taped to the sleek, black TiVo box.

[via engadget]