Reader Challenge: You’ve got FIOS in my DVR


Rod wrote:

I have a Pioneer DVR-531H and I recently subscribed to Verizon FIOS TV, that uses a cable box (Motorola QIP2500-3). The Pioneer DVR is like Tivo in that it has a built-in TV Guide, but this doesn’t work with the cable box and Pioneer doesn’t make an IR blaster so that the DVR can change the cable box channel to record. I can leave the Pioneer DVR set to channel 3 and program it to manually turn on at the correct time, but I can’t make the DVR turn on and select the right channel on the FIOS Cable box.

My idea/question is:

Does someone know how to create a way to automate the FIOS Cable box remote so that it can change the cable box channel when I want to record to my DVR? In other words, the set up would be:

  1. Pioneer DVR set to channel 3
  2. Pioneer DVR programmed manually to record at a certain time
  3. Automated remote would turn on the FIOS cable box and select the appropriate channel prior to the DVR turning on to record

So – how to create something that could be programmed to operate the FIOS cable box remote to turn the box on and select the right channel when the DVR is programmed to record?

Jason Striegel’s suggestion is to set up a Linux box sending infrared commands using LIRC at the specified times; use it to send commands to the DVR as well as the FIOS box. Let us know in the comments if you have any ideas of your own!


I'm a tinkerer and finally reached the point where I fix more things than I break. When I'm not tinkering, I'm probably editing a book for Maker Media.

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