Sadly swapping out the box is sometimes the only anwser when it keeps freezing during playback, it normally means its the hard drive going. You can try possibally hooking up an external hard drive to it and then trying to move the recordings. We can not really offer support on doing this but it is possible it could be done. I know at one point I played around with it but it was a couple of years ago and I cant remember if you can move the recordings after they are saved anymore. Read the green post in this link for more information on that. Sorry to hear your having issues with the boxes. I know my parents (who had similar issues) did explain it to a rep at their local office and she put them on a callback list when they got a different type of DVR box in. I am not sure if all the local offices have the ability to do that but you could always ask your local office if they are able to do that.
My DVR freezes the cable box and screen whenever I try a playback. Tech support says swap it out, but then I lose my recordings. 3rd time in a year.
A couple of questions-
1.) Do you recall the make and model of each cable box you have had? What were they if you remember?
2.) Does the problem happen on every single recording or only some recording?
3.) Have you cold rebooted the box? (Powered off the box for at least 30 seconds-unplug the box for about a minute and plug back in?)
4.) Before doing anything else, I would have the tech do signal tests and line test inside and outside the home. Have him check the signal at the pole, the cables to the DVR and TV
5.) Are there some channels where the freezing is worse than others?
I am not a tech, but three boxes doing the same DVR freeze over such a short time would seem to indicate a signal or line issue. At least, I would get that checked out. If signal and line tests check out, than sadly, you will probably have to swap out the box.
Sadly, I think you have to get used to it.
This happens to me all the time, particularly since the last 'upgrade' the box hangs in the middle of the day, during playback, pretty much anytime. It's the 4th box in about a year. Basically the software if not the equipment stinks. I have to reboot it 2-3 times to get it back. Like I said, it's worse now, but it's happened with different equipment. This isn't even going into the fact that the DVR goes completely flaky at > 90% full and records things I haven't programmed and ignores things I have programmed.
I like the programming on TWC but the service & software is unsatisfactory. I don't want the only solution to be a technician visit to replace the box (that I can do myself for free with no tip). I WANT SOME DIAGNOSTICS DONE. Sorry, venting for a second.
For a practical band-aid, I reboot my box every day now. Either in the morning or before I go to sleep. It's helped a bit.