April 30, 2009 my HR21 downloaded a new version of the DTV DVR software, designated 0x2f6. There is a lot of talk of bugs and issues with this new version. Here's some comments I have about it, after using it a few weeks.

They have added some feedback so one can tell (usually) when something is clicked/selected with the remote. It doesn't give a Tivo "bong" sound, but the selected item/button does flash once to indicate it was clicked. Before, for many functions ("Delete" comes to mind) there was basically no feedback that the option was clicked for several seconds, which would cause one to press again, and then those clicks were "buffered" and played back later (much later) and the whole thing was annoying. With the new "flash" once" feedback at least you know the operation has started - it still might take 10 seconds or more to finish or to provide any additional feedback, but at least now you know to just wait rather than keep clicking.

They also added some additional progress bars at certain points (again, "Delete" comes to mind) to provide further feedback that the receiver is doing something. In the past, deleting a program could take a long time and there was basically no feedback that anything was happening.

For some silly reason they increased the "jump back" when using single-speed (one arrow) fast forward. This make this fast-forward mode almost useless because the time it takes to fast-foward is lost in the "jump-back".

A lot of people are complaining all over the net about audio and video break-up and sync problems. So far, for me, these have not been worse than I have always had with the HR21, or at least not it's not noticeable for me yet (very few recordings are 100% free of defects in audio or video with this blasted machine; there are always some burps and skips, and DJ-like scratching (repeats), video artifacts, pixelation etc.)

I have had some recordings that don't play for no apparent reason. They show as having normal duration but they won't play. They just get "stuck" - no combination of fast-forward, jumping around etc. cause the video to play. It would just jump from beginning to end and not play. A not quite as fatal of a situation is sometimes during playback a recording freezes and I have to fast forward to start it going again - there is a "hole" of a few seconds to a few minutes in duration in the video that will not play no matter what.

Update: You can find more about this release on DBSTalk forums here: http://www.dbstalk.com/showthread.php?t=155859

Update May 2009: I am now experiencing te pixelation and audio drop-outs that everyone else reports. It seems unlikely to be signal / dish issues becuase resetting the HR-21 box causes the issues to go away for a few hours. Others have started to simply unplug the box each night. DirecTV customer services refuses to accept that there are issues and provides the standard "swap the SATIN cables" useless advice as usual. I am just sick and tired of this.