[mythtv-users] Harmony 700?

Christian Szpilfogel chrisznews4 at rogers.com
Sun Oct 24 15:07:08 UTC 2010

On 22/10/2010 9:24 PM, Tortise wrote:
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Gabe Rubin" <gaberubin at gmail.com>
> To: "Discussion about MythTV" <mythtv-users at mythtv.org>
> Sent: Saturday, October 23, 2010 1:10 PM
> Subject: Re: [mythtv-users] Harmony 700?
> On Fri, Oct 22, 2010 at 4:57 PM, Tortise <tortise at paradise.net.nz> wrote:
>>> If it also solved the standby power consumption issue I'd probably 
>>> agree. I don't believe it does though?
>> Are you talking about "phantom" power draw, when you turn a device 
>> off, but it is not really off?
> Yes
I don't think you are talking phantom here. You are talking about 
putting your PC in "suspend" mode. When a PC is off (ie. powered down) 
the phantom load shouldn't be more than about 4W depending on the power 

>> I thought short of actually unplugging a device it will always draw 
>> some power
> True. That's what I am talking about, using a relay to effectively 
> unplug them.  I measured some of my FE PC's draw 25W in standby, when 
> off.  (Pentium 3000 class machines, later C2D machines typ pull less 
> and the ions will likely pull less again, however it all adds up...) 
> That is the PC only, before the TV (+17.5W) and sound system drains 
> (+2.4W) are also added in is about 45W all the time. Gets worst when 
> you clone and scale this setup around the house.
What I do is actually power down as opposed to suspend. Hibernation is 
also an option but given my front end boots in about 40 seconds I really 
don't find it worth the extra effort.

I'm surprised your TV has a phantom load of 17.5W. None of my TVs have 
any measurable phantom load. Even my old Sony XBR that I bought in 1990 
has a main relay that cuts the large PS out when the TV is off. The load 
to drive the IR is not even measurable on a kill-a-watt meter. Same goes 
for my audio receiver.

The only things that draws significant power are the Cisco/SA set top 
boxes which draw a shocking 25W just for the basic set top box and 35W 
for the PVR. Turning the power button off on those seems to be a placebo 
as well as it doesn't change the power draw. They take about 5-10minutes 
to boot and sync so you pretty much have to leave them on. I have 4 of 
these beasts.

>> If not, the Harmony will shut off all my devices when I press power 
>> (except my mythbox, which I leave on at all times, but you could 
>> certainly have it shut that off as well).
> I believe it shuts down into suspend mode only, and often pulls more 
> power than one realises, unless of course you regard the above power 
> use as negligible?   The setup I described would pull truly negligible 
> power, a few milli amps at a few volts ~ 0.06W.  Now that's what I 
> call negligible.
The Harmony will do what you tell it to do. In my case I power down the 
system completely.

To turn it on I use a Veris IR receiver which will power on the system 
with a specific IR code. It basically sits in line with the power button 
lead to the motherboard. I've written a couple of how-to's for the set 
up over at the knoppmyth/LinHES site.

I have 3 front ends built this way and each draws less than 2W when off. 
My master backend sits virtualized on my main work horse server for 
further savings.

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