Xc5000 improvements Released!

Tonight I finally fixed the last Pinnacle 800i issue and issued a PULL request to Mauro for the xc5000 improvements.

If you’re reading this because you’re looking for the firmware, you can find it here:


Now that we have legal redistribution rights, I’ll be working on getting this firmware into the various distributions so that users have a true “plug-and-play” experience.

Thanks go out to all the users who were kind enough to test the beta releases, as well as to Xceive for providing documentation and firmware that we are allowed to redistribute.

12 thoughts on “Xc5000 improvements Released!

  1. Hi, Devin.

    I have a HVR-950Q, and I am seeing xc5000: Device not found at addr 0x61 (0xffff) in dmesg. I’m using the latest firmware. I have been able to watch live TV with MythTV in the past, but it’s been extremely unreliable. Now I’m guessing this error is the source of my problems. It won’t tune any channels, and a channel scan finds nothing.

    Would appreciate any suggestions you can offer.



    • Hello Andy,

      Can you clarify what has changed since when it was working and now? Also can you better characterize what you mean by “extremely unreliable”.

      FYI: There is a known issue with the 950Q under MythTV if you are attempting to use it for both analog and digital support.


  2. It would fail to tune most of the time. Occasionally it would work. Often it would just show a blank screen with the channel info at the bottom and not locked. It seemed random. Last weekend I monkeyed around for an hour before completely removing MythTV and reinstalling it. Then it worked. Since then it has not worked. I tried the same thing. Then I noticed the xc5000 error message.

    I am just trying to use the DVB for over the air broadcasts.

    I also haven’t had any luck getting other players like Kaffeine to work, because I haven’t been able to create a channels.conf for them.

    I am using Ubuntu with the latest updates. The kernel is 2.6.31-15-generic.

    Really appreciate the quick response.


  3. Some more info: I tried booting directly from my Ubuntu 9.04 CD, and I see the same xc5000: Device not found…

    I ran MythTV to look at the readout at the bottom. It says “Signal 0% | S/N 2.1dB | BE 255 | (L__)”.

    I found xc5000.c and looked at the code where the error is reported, but I’m not a Linux developer. I couldn’t make much of it.


    • Hi Andy,

      I’m not sure I completely understand. Are you saying that before it worked intermittently, and now it fails 100% of the time? Or are you saying that before it worked fine and now it works intermittently?

      Have you tried the board under Windows? Maybe your hardware is just defective.


  4. Devin,

    In the time I’ve had it, it has worked (tuned digital over the air channels) maybe 10% of the time. I would try it and it wouldn’t work. So I’d quit the front end, run mythtv-setup, and go back to the front end. Or reboot. Or reinstall MythTV. Or give up and come back another day. And then it would (sometimes) work. I was never able to figure out a procedure that would make it work every time. It worked last Sunday. I’ve been doing all the things I mentioned many, many times since then, and it will not work. Then today I noticed the xc5000 error message, and from what little I know about this, it makes sense that everything seems to be working except the tuning.

    I’ve been wondering if it’s a hardware problem. Would that cause that error? Would anything else cause that error? Is there a way I can reload the driver without a reboot? Does “modprobe xc5000” do that?

    I don’t have a Windows system available at the moment that can run it (I’m home sick). I did try it once on a very underpowered laptop, and it worked with no issues.

    Oh, and when it worked (under Linux), it was beautiful.



  5. Devin,

    I dragged my sick butt across town and tried the device on the Windows XP laptop again. This time it didn’t work. The blue light on the device lit up as usual (even under Linux), but it couldn’t find any channels. I’m going to try to exchange it in the morning. I’ll let you know if all my problems are solved.



  6. Hi, Devin.

    I replaced the unit. I don’t get the xc5000 error anymore. MythTV was still not tuning channels for some reason, so I uninstalled it. After uninstalling MythTV everything else works. “scan” works. Kaffeine. Me-TV. I think I might be done with MythTV.

    Thanks for the help.


  7. Hi,

    I have an HVR-850 (the one that looks like a 950Q, not the other one) and I can’t get audio to work no matter what application I use (tvtime, mplayer, etc). Video tunes in just fine, I’m using the drivers in 2.6.31.

    Can anyone give me a hint? Is there a kernel module I’m missing? Obscure command line parameter?


    • Hi Peter,

      The issue is that tvtime does not support audio coming from an ALSA device, and mplayer does but only if you give it a series of special arguments. This problem is not specific to the HVR-850, as it occurs with most modern tuners that provide raw analog video.

      For example, if you run tvtime and then in a separate window run the following, you will hear the audio:

      arecord -D hw:1,0 -f dat | aplay

      (the above assumes that your HVR-850 ALSA input is “1,0”. You can run “arecord -L” to list them)

      We’re actually in the process of improving tvtime so that it supports ALSA audio input, so keep an eye on the KernelLabs blog.


      • Devin,

        Thanks, this worked perfectly. I was having trouble separating driver issues from application issues, this helps a lot.

        In case it saves anyone some time, the equivalent command to make this work using mplayer is:

        mplayer tv:// -tv norm=NTSC-M:chanlist=us-cable:alsa:adevice=hw.1,0:immediatemode=0 -aspect 4:3


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