Monday, August 11, 2008

Adding an external hard drive to your Scientific Atlanta DVR

So I have a Scientific Atlanta 8300HDC DVR (SARA) from comcast that I use mostly for live and timeshift TV watching, as a backup to my homebrew pvr rcTV where I do most of my recording, and to work with my slingbox AV. So I don't actually use my SA 8300HDC all that much (part of it is b/c how much it sucks: slow remote reponse, audio drop outs on playback, and other issues) but I do use it once in a while. It has a pitiful 160GB hard drive compared to the roughly 4TB of space I have allocated to rcTV (Olympics is chewing up 85GB a day!). Anyways here is a quick and easy way to add more space to the SA 8300 by attaching an external eSATA hard drive.

SA 8300 HD Tips & Tricks -- SARA
8300 and External SATA

- Here is a nice list of compatible enclosures (SARA). I picked up an Antec MX-1 enclosure a while back. You can usually get it for $30 after MIR if you catch it on sale. It's a really nice enclosure, well built, 80mm fan, all cables included, and quiet.

- I had an old Maxtor 500GB sata hard drive sitting around which I used.

- Hooked everything up, connected the esata cable to the back of the DRV. After a few seconds I was prompted with this:

- formatting takes only a few seconds

- space used before and after:

- I believe it tries to fill up the hard drives evenly. Since my internal was nearly full the very next recording was on the external hdd (I could here it writing if I put my ear next to the enclosure). Anyways, it's a relatively inexpensive and easy way to add more space to your DVR.


The Angry Intern said...

good write up! I have one of those with TWC I might have to check this out, although I have my TivoHD and the External drive for that.

Bob said...

Just a quick thanks for your write up!! I successfully installed an additional drive based on your instructions. I would only add that if the usage bar doesn't change the first attempt, unplug and plug in a second time. It then recognized the drive.

Thanks so much!!!


ARogan said...

Bob, you're welcome. Glad it all worked out for you.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the post. I have a question, does formatting the hard drive erase DVR recordings from your hard drive, or does it erase everything from the hard drive?

My sister's championship game is coming on TV on March 8th and I wanted to record it and save a copy for myself and have been googling how for days now. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

ARogan said...

Formatting will wipe everything on the hard drive. So if there is anything on there you wish to keep, best to back it up first.

Anonymous said...

Thank you