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Old Nov 1, 2012, 01:31 PM   #1
Bozley0621
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Was finally able to cut the TV cable cord and felt like sharing

My husband was living and working in NC and I in MD outside of DC. He had cable with a lot of the extra channels such as HBO, Cinemax, and Showtime. I tried oodles of antennas in MD, but was never able to find one that brought in even one channel since half of my condo was semi-subterranean, so I had cable and FIOS for a bit after I tired of Comcast's left hand not speaking to the right hand.

We have recently relocated to San Diego, but lived out of our camper for about a month and a half with only access to Hulu and Netflix on the iPads and laptops when the campground we were in had a reliable wifi signal. Realizing that he was satisfied with Netflix and Hulu only and his recent addiction to Lost on Hulu, my husband has agreed to a trial period of being cable free. I was also able to get OTA content from all of the major networks, except CW and some great sub-channels using the Leaf antennas. I like sports but am satisfied with what is shown on the networks.

I don't think that I have a "stick it to the man" mentality regarding cable companies. I decided that their tv service was not for me since many of the shows were redundant with way too many commercials or the content didn't interest me. I wasn't willing to pay their price for the service and equipment. I do use Cox for internet which is necessary for Hulu and Netflix. However, I don't mind this charge because I feel that I get use the service enough to justify the cost.

As an aside, the movers broke our Sony Bravia 55" XBR6 tv, so we are now in the market for a new TV. The moving company will reimburse us for the full replacement value once we submit the claim. So many choices! For the sake of our sanity and to avoid paying sales tax, I think we are going to limit our decision to what is available at the PX. We strangely have more ATVs right now than TVs.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:04 PM   #2
jpix55
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I like reading these stories about people who cut the cord and things work out. Soon, my satellite contract is going to expire and I am most likely not going to re-new it.

My question for you is this: how quickly into the "cut-the-cord" trial period did you and your husband realize that cable was not necessary and that you were perfectly content with hulu/netflix and the OTA channels? Was it days, weeks, months, etc?
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:26 PM   #3
Bozley0621
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpix55 View Post
I like reading these stories about people who cut the cord and things work out. Soon, my satellite contract is going to expire and I am most likely not going to re-new it.

My question for you is this: how quickly into the "cut-the-cord" trial period did you and your husband realize that cable was not necessary and that you were perfectly content with hulu/netflix and the OTA channels? Was it days, weeks, months, etc?
I always liked and envied these stories too, which is why I was excited to share.

I really began kicking around the idea two years ago and tried A LOT of antennas over that time in my condo. The reason I didn't cut the cable was that I couldn't get any OTA channels. I suppose you could say that was MY deciding factor. I had a DVR with cable, but never used it. All of my favorite shows are available on the major networks, so I used Hulu and sometimes TV On Demand through Comcast to catch up. The cable shows that I did like, I could watch on Netflix, even though they weren't the most current. Cutting the cord may not be for someone who likes a lot of the shows available via cable/satellite. I had to fly back to DC two weeks ago for work with full cable in my hotel. I rarely watched it the entire week and watched Hulu on my iPad and read a lot.

Hubbs is still in his trial period. I think the transition was easier for him since he simply didn't have cable once we were "camping" across the country. He hasn't missed cable since he has been watching Lost every moment he is watching TV. He is on Season 5 and once he finishes season 6 and begins watching other shows on Netflix, Hulu, and OTA, I think I'll get his final verdict.

I can honestly say that without cable, I am finding other things to do in the evening besides watch tv. I don't feel like my nights and weekends are flying by since I'm engaged in various other activities or not staying up to mindlessly watch "just one more show" that I never would've had an interest in had I not been channel surfing. I suppose the OTA channels that we are receive fill my need to channel surf just right: not to much to go through and enough to calm the channel surfing need in me.

....sorry for the rambling thoughts.
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 12:54 AM   #4
Michael CM1
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I would love to do that, but here are my main concerns.

1) Sports. When there are 500 football games on ESPN, is there any option to see these? ESPN 3 blacks out a bunch of stuff and/or delays it. Plus you've got other stuff on Fox Sports networks.

2) Recording shows OTA. I could probably find an OTA antenna, but what should I use to record? My Dish Network DVR is pretty nice. I have a $1300 TV, so I don't really want to watch crappy quality stuff on it.

3) Original programming on cable channels. Aside from buying this stuff on iTunes, is there a way to get a lot of this stuff? I'm thinking Deadliest Catch, Whale Wars, etc. I guess for a lot of it you can wait for Netflix rentals, but some of these shows are about three seasons behind.

I really wish there was a great way to cut the cord on so many channels I never use. I maybe watch 15 or 20 total. Plus for some reason I don't get the CW in HD. Arrgh.
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 02:33 AM   #5
CocoaPuffs
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There isn't alternative to sports on cable, and even if there are some sort of subscription base plan down the road, the cost will likely be very close to the bundled service of cable. The saving would then be a wash because of the various limitation of streaming as oppose to simply watching everything on cable.

So ya...cable companies have sports fans by the balls (lol) and there really isn't much we can do about it.

Last edited by CocoaPuffs; Nov 2, 2012 at 02:49 AM.
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 09:08 AM   #6
BJMRamage
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael CM1 View Post
I would love to do that, but here are my main concerns.

1) Sports.
2) Recording shows.
3) Original programming on cable channels. .

I really wish there was a great way to cut the cord on so many channels I never use. I maybe watch 15 or 20 total.
Totally seeing this point.
We subscribe to a Triple-Play service (Phone, TV, internet) I currently do not subscribe to Netflix or Hulu. We have 2 premium channels but don't watch their TV shows, just movies if any good ones on. (We never wanted to watch, say, an HBO show if one day we dropped HBO.)

We could get the MLB package but for 15 years the O's sucked so not a huge loss to miss them. Then there is NFL. We love the Ravens and watch many other games too.
With a toddler we sometimes record a show and watch later when he is asleep…getting interrupted too often means hard to watch Live TV.
We have gotten into some shows we never would have thought about watching without simply flipping to them…but unsure if available via netflix (or hulu) and not keen on paying iTunes to watch episodes.

I think the thing is it is very SIMPLE to have cable. I hate that we only watch 10-20 channels out of hundreds. But we have an AppleTV now so things could change. And thanks to a few Apps, our son can watch Disney Junior shows on the iPad (not available to airplay on TV though). Though we have started to watch a few shows randomly thanks to seeing it and watching and being wowed, there are MANY times we simply flip and flip and flip through the guide and TRY and find something to watch. All too often we see channels simply showing marathons…we either saw all those episodes or don't care about XX show. Another thing is paying a monthly fee we know how much we are spending…switching to either netflix/hulu or a Pay as you Go means we could suddenly hit $100 or more one month if I want to DL and have Areal America or something else.


*sorry for the long post
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 09:30 AM   #7
donrsd
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Originally Posted by NeuroticNomad View Post
I even got my picture in the NY Times (and my Mac mini too!)
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/11/garden/11tv.html

Now that all my eye issues are cleared up, I'll be resurrecting my cord-cutter website (mentioned in the article).

I now have iTunes running like a TiVo - thanks to TV Shows, Transmission, and iVI.
If ESPN & other 'sports channels' were available LIVE, while ;cutting the cord', Id be all for it.

I could care less about Lifetime, Oxygen, etc.
ESPN's, News & other sports is all I need
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 11:09 AM   #8
ftaok
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael CM1 View Post
2) Recording shows OTA. I could probably find an OTA antenna, but what should I use to record? My Dish Network DVR is pretty nice. I have a $1300 TV, so I don't really want to watch crappy quality stuff on it.

.
you could use a computer to record the OTA channels. EyeTV for Mac or windows media center for pcs.
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 11:49 AM   #9
snberk103
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We cut the cable back in 2002.... 10 years ago. Went through phase of trying to stream TV shows over the internet... now... we don't even do that.

We watch The National (CBC's national news show) nightly, will stream the Olympics and other special events... and watch iTunes movies and TV shows (old classics - not current schmaltz)...

Don't miss it at all. We go go out more, we go to live shows, we have dinner with our friends, we build things around the house....

And we totally don't get some pop culture references... so our friends explain them to us.

We do end up reading a lot of news online though.
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 11:37 AM   #10
CoMoMacUser
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael CM1 View Post
3) Original programming on cable channels. Aside from buying this stuff on iTunes, is there a way to get a lot of this stuff? I'm thinking Deadliest Catch, Whale Wars, etc. I guess for a lot of it you can wait for Netflix rentals, but some of these shows are about three seasons behind.
More and more cable programming is showing up on Amazon Prime, so I recommend checking to see if it has what you want.
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Old Nov 4, 2012, 09:19 AM   #11
JAT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael CM1 View Post
I would love to do that, but here are my main concerns.

1) Sports. When there are 500 football games on ESPN, is there any option to see these? ESPN 3 blacks out a bunch of stuff and/or delays it. Plus you've got other stuff on Fox Sports networks.
Sure. But how many do you actually watch? 168 hours per week real time, and you may spend some of that sleeping. I did this for all 5 family members: write down the shows you actually want to watch, sports included. Then find whether you can watch them after cutting the cord. As several of us have posted, there are far more live sports available today via streaming than even 2 years ago. Plus, I still got something like 8 college games yesterday via OTA, and 4 NFL today.

Quote:
2) Recording shows OTA. I could probably find an OTA antenna, but what should I use to record? My Dish Network DVR is pretty nice. I have a $1300 TV, so I don't really want to watch crappy quality stuff on it.
As I said, EyeTV and Tivo. But to quality...OTA will give you the best quality, cable companies suck. I have to keep my mouth shut at other people's houses so I don't tell them just how bad their "HD" picture is. (Dish is better than most cable, I'll grant you)

Quote:
Plus for some reason I don't get the CW in HD. Arrgh.
That would be CW's fault. Crappy network is crappy. I don't think there is a single show I watch from that network. I don't mean to dismiss it if it is your favorite, but....wait....yes, yes I do.
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Old Nov 15, 2012, 06:16 PM   #12
StinDaWg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael CM1 View Post
I would love to do that, but here are my main concerns.

1) Sports. When there are 500 football games on ESPN, is there any option to see these? ESPN 3 blacks out a bunch of stuff and/or delays it. Plus you've got other stuff on Fox Sports networks.

2) Recording shows OTA. I could probably find an OTA antenna, but what should I use to record? My Dish Network DVR is pretty nice. I have a $1300 TV, so I don't really want to watch crappy quality stuff on it.

3) Original programming on cable channels. Aside from buying this stuff on iTunes, is there a way to get a lot of this stuff? I'm thinking Deadliest Catch, Whale Wars, etc. I guess for a lot of it you can wait for Netflix rentals, but some of these shows are about three seasons behind.

I really wish there was a great way to cut the cord on so many channels I never use. I maybe watch 15 or 20 total. Plus for some reason I don't get the CW in HD. Arrgh.
1. Use a friend or families login to WatchESPN. OTA for weekend network sports, FirstRowSports for everything else.

2. HTPC with Windows Media Center. No monthly dvr fee and the best interface in the business.

3. Torrents.
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 03:19 PM   #13
mslide
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpix55 View Post
how quickly into the "cut-the-cord" trial period did you and your husband realize that cable was not necessary and that you were perfectly content with hulu/netflix and the OTA channels? Was it days, weeks, months, etc?
For my wife and I, it was instant. We cancelled about 6 months ago and haven't looked back. Keep in mind that this is coming from 2 people who were totally hooked on TV. I was most worried about my wife, who was hooked on reality TV shows (i.e. of which almost all of them are not available on Netflix/Hulu/website/etc). We used to watch tons of TV and never thought we could live on just Netflix and OTA. Now, I couldn't imagine going back to paying for Comcast/Dish/etc. It's a matter of watching less TV, changing how you watch TV and being okay with the idea of always being a season or 2 behind on some shows.

We used to sit down and flip through channels until we found something we wanted to watch. Now, we sit down knowing exactly what we want to watch. It's given us the opportunity to get into a lot of shows, that have been on for a few years, that we probably wouldn't have ever considered watching before (e.g. Burn Notice, White Collar, How I Met Your Mother, etc). We've also gotten much more into watching movies.

When we just want to have something on for background noise or just want to watch anything to kill time, we'll put on a show that has tons of episodes on Netflix, like Family Guy or Law and Order SVU. I only wish they had a 'Random Episode' option for those times.

To anybody on the fence about cutting the cord, I highly recommend giving it an honest shot. You might surprise yourself. Of course, neither of us care about sports. If we did, then that might change things.

Last edited by mslide; Nov 2, 2012 at 03:25 PM.
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 08:35 AM   #14
NeuroticNomad
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I cut the cord in 2008 and have never looked back.

I even got my picture in the NY Times (and my Mac mini too!)
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/11/garden/11tv.html

Now that all my eye issues are cleared up, I'll be resurrecting my cord-cutter website (mentioned in the article).

I now have iTunes running like a TiVo - thanks to TV Shows, Transmission, and iVI.
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Old Jan 9, 2013, 01:40 PM   #15
Bozley0621
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bozley0621 View Post
My husband was living and working in NC and I in MD outside of DC. He had cable with a lot of the extra channels such as HBO, Cinemax, and Showtime. I tried oodles of antennas in MD, but was never able to find one that brought in even one channel since half of my condo was semi-subterranean, so I had cable and FIOS for a bit after I tired of Comcast's left hand not speaking to the right hand.

We have recently relocated to San Diego, but lived out of our camper for about a month and a half with only access to Hulu and Netflix on the iPads and laptops when the campground we were in had a reliable wifi signal. Realizing that he was satisfied with Netflix and Hulu only and his recent addiction to Lost on Hulu, my husband has agreed to a trial period of being cable free. I was also able to get OTA content from all of the major networks, except CW and some great sub-channels using the Leaf antennas. I like sports but am satisfied with what is shown on the networks.

I don't think that I have a "stick it to the man" mentality regarding cable companies. I decided that their tv service was not for me since many of the shows were redundant with way too many commercials or the content didn't interest me. I wasn't willing to pay their price for the service and equipment. I do use Cox for internet which is necessary for Hulu and Netflix. However, I don't mind this charge because I feel that I get use the service enough to justify the cost.

As an aside, the movers broke our Sony Bravia 55" XBR6 tv, so we are now in the market for a new TV. The moving company will reimburse us for the full replacement value once we submit the claim. So many choices! For the sake of our sanity and to avoid paying sales tax, I think we are going to limit our decision to what is available at the PX. We strangely have more ATVs right now than TVs.
Last night I realized our trial period is over. My husband finished all of Lost and expanded his viewing beyond one show. We watch Hulu and Netflix 99% of the time. Last night I suggested that we see what is on regular TV during prime time. We watched Raising Hope and 10 minutes into it he said, "I don't like commercials." I responded that we watch commercials on Hulu, but he rebutted that there are far less and Hulu is kind enough to give us a count down so we know how long we have to grab the cookies or make a head call.

We are officially cable TV free.
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Old Jan 9, 2013, 02:45 PM   #16
BigDukeSix
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Bozley, I know what you mean. The more I watch shows on Hulu,Netflix, etc, the less I like network tv and the multiple commercials I have to endure with them.
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