Tell me about Tivo and other DVRs

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by adk, Mar 26, 2006.

  1. adk macrumors 68000

    adk

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    #1
    I really want to get a tivo or other type of DVR, but I don't want to get digital cable or satellite because regular cable is included in my rent. I have a few questions.

    1.What alternatives are there to tivo?

    2.How much decent quality video can an 80 hour recorder actually hold?

    3.Is there any DVR out there that doesn't need to be connected to a phone line?
     
  2. todd2000 macrumors 68000

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    #2
    I've got a ReplayTV and I LOVE it. I got the 40 hour one which holds 40 hours at "standard quality" which actually looks much better then you would expect, I record normally at "medium" quality which holds I think like 20 hours or. There is a "high quality" mode, which only holds something like 13 hours, but really medium is as good as you'll really need to record. So anyway here is a link to the two models from compUSA http://www.compusa.com/products/products.asp?N=200446+406558&Ne=400000 . Also whats really cool is you can DL a program called DVArchieve for MAC, or PC and transfer all of your recorded shows from the ReplayTV to your computer to archieve them, and after theit stored on your computer you can delete them from the Replay, and when you want to watch them again stream them from the computer back to the replay over your network and watch them on your TV (if that made any sense). Which brings me to your last question, there is both a phone jack, and an ethernet port in the back, so you can hook it up to your LAN, or even get a wireless adapter for it if you have a wireless network and don't feel like running wires. Any more questions I'de be glad to help.
     
  3. todd2000 macrumors 68000

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    #3
    Oh and I almost forgot Digital Networks, NA who makes the Replay are located in Cupertino, CA. So they must be good right? :) LOL
     
  4. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    #4
    It's a little old, but this was very informative when I was at the meeting.
     
  5. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #5
    I'm also in the market for a DVR. Whats the advantage to ReplayTV over Tivo? For $220, I can get a year of Tivo and an 80 hour box which seems like a deal to me
     
  6. slagonnee macrumors member

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    #6
    As much as I love my ReplayTV (built in ethernet networking, better Mac software options), if you are looking for a non-computer based DVR, Tivo may end up being your only choice.

    DNNA officially withdrew from the stand alone hardware realm last year, so no new ReplayTV units in the future (the 5500 series were the last):

    http://www.digitalnetworksna.com/About/Replaytv/press.asp?ID=613

    (I snagged an extra unit for parts when DNNA was blowing out their inventory about two months ago.)

    RTV units that are in the market will still be supported/fixed by DNNA, and the programming will still be available, but who knows how long they will continue to support the hardware (programming probably isn't that big of a deal to continue to offer).

    Will probably end up going with EyeTv or even Tivo (if they ever make a Mac version of TivoToGo) when my Replay finally reaches its end... Hopefully by then, there will be an Apple DVR option :D
     
  7. Aeolius macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    Since the TiVo Series 2 doesn't support HDTV via my cable provider, doesn't have dual tuners, and doesn't offer TiVoToGo, I'm sticking with my SA 8300, as provided by my local cable provider. Mind you, the menus aren't as pretty.

    The TiVo Series 3, due out this summer with luck, should fix those three issues.
     
  8. Lyle macrumors 68000

    Lyle

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    #8
    I am woefully ignorant about this stuff, but can you not just buy a digital video recorder that doesn't require a monthly subscription like TiVo does? Basically the digital equivalent of a VCR? For those of you who have TiVo, what is it about their service that makes it worth the ten bucks a month (or whatever a subscription goes for these days)?
     
  9. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #9
    I'm wondering the same thing. Isn't there a DVR that records just like a VCR? Is there no other choice? I have long refused to pay money for cable TV and now that I have an HDTV and all our local channels broadcast digitally, I'll never get cable. So- how do I record?
     
  10. XNine macrumors 68040

    XNine

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    #10
    Well, tha main point about the Replays are that they do not require a phone line, unlike Tivo's. The Tivo will not connect to the service via ethernet (what year are we in now?)

    So for people who have limited phone jacks or no phone service (like me, who only has a cell phone) buying a Tivo is a waste of money.

    I too ma looking for an alternative where I do not have to pay for programming guides... I don't think this exists on a normal DVR.
     
  11. iPhil macrumors 68040

    iPhil

    #11

    Going into the 4th month of 2006 :rolleyes: :eek: :p

    Tivo is stuck in the 80's with phoneline update :confused: :confused:
     
  12. todd2000 macrumors 68000

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    #12
    Well as much as I like my Replay after rading this thread I guess Tivo is the way to go. If im reading this page http://www.tivo.com/4.9.4.1.asp correctly it supports Mac (scroll to the bottom), and this page says it can be networked http://customersupport.tivo.com/knowbase/root/public/tv2009.htm? , or is that just to transfer recordings, and not update? As for grabbing an extra one for parts, the thing most likely to break would be the HD, cause it is spinning 24/7 right? I could just buy a new HD and use ReplayTVPatch to upgrade it.
     
  13. turbopants macrumors regular

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    #13
    I have no landline phone line and I connect to the Tivo service through the internet using a Netgear 802.11 USB adapter. It works great. Yes, you need a wireless adapter to do this, but in no way do you need a phone line for Tivo service. Just wanted to make that known in this discussion.

    Plus the adapter lets me stream music and photos from my Mac, and I can use all the internet features of the Tivo (podcasts, Live 365, etc)
     
  14. emw macrumors G4

    emw

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    Aug 2, 2004
    #14
    Just to be clear, the last I checked (which admittedly was a couple of months ago) you need to have a phone line for initial setup of the TiVo device, even though you can subsequently use the network connection for any other updates. Also, TiVo is limited to 802.11b for any wireless adpater, so the speeds you get for transferring (between DVRs or for TiVo2Go) is slower than you might think it would be.

    Of course, you can also get an ethernet adapter, vs. wireless, but those have their own wiring issues.

    To the point of the discussion - I like my TiVo, generally enjoy the services and the "extras", but like other Mac users have been frustrated by a lack of T2G and slowness in TiVo Desktop support for Tiger.

    I have two TiVos, and so pay about $20 per month in service fees, which I find to be a little pricey. I'd consider trading in on something that was a "stand-alone" device, but just haven't done much investigation recently.
     
  15. adk thread starter macrumors 68000

    adk

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    #15
    Let me ask a few more questions...


    1. If I buy a Replay TV box off of say ebay there's no programming fee?

    2. If I buy a used replay TV will I be able to configure it for my location?

    3. Are there models of the replay TV box that can be configured and then download programming completely without a phone line?

    2. To owners of Replay TV or Tivo, what happens when you move? is it easy to reconfigure a box?
     
  16. slagonnee macrumors member

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    Apr 28, 2005
    #16
    Some answers:

    1. All ReplayTv units require a programming fee of some sort (except for really old models - pre-4000 series that had lifetime subscriptions included). Either monthly or lifetime. On eBay, sellers usually tell you if the unit comes with a lifetime or needs a monthly/lifetime. Lifetimes are locked to the unit - if you want to be official, you should have the seller switch to ownership name to you.

    2. Unless you are in a super rural area, ReplayTV programming guides usually are pretty robust. Just enter in your ZIP code in the settings and you can choose whatever broadcast/cable/DSS system you use.

    2a. When you move, all you have to do is change the ZIP code in the ReplayTV settings. The units aren't tied to a specific IP address or anything - it just looks to see if the unit has a valid programming subscription when it connects to the servers. and will update channel info to your new ZIP.

    3. All ReplayTV units starting with the 4000 series can be run completely off the ethernet. I have a 45xx series and have never once used the phone line.
     
  17. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

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    #17
    I love my DirectTivos, all three of 'em (Two SD, one HD). Hate the fact that they'll be obsolete soon and replaced with DTV's crap. Though maybe we're see some new features then!
    One option here without giving up too much TiVo goodness is to consider the DVD Recorders from Toshiba and Pioneer that support VCR style "TiVo Basic" service. You could always upgrade to "regular" TiVo service if you so desired.

    Lots of good info on getting the most out of your TiVos at http://www.dealdatabase.com/forum

    B
     
  18. slagonnee macrumors member

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    Apr 28, 2005
    #18
    Upgrading a HDD in a RTV is a fairly simple process. RTVPatch has a frontend for people with 55xx series, if you don't like using Terminal (can't seem to find a link for it). Probably best to use a Firewire or USB 2.0 case, as it didn't seem to like the ATA/IDE bus on my MDD G4.

    I bought my extra 45xx on the chance that the NIC goes out on my current model, and for the extra remote. Ended up being cheaper buying the whole unit than some of the RTV remotes on eBay.
     
  19. AmbitiousLemon Moderator emeritus

    AmbitiousLemon

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    #19
    I have a replaytv and love it (way better than tivo), but i think people have already discussed it thoroughly.

    What everyon should be watching is MythTV (a free linux based DVR solution)
    Main site
    Wiki Site

    It puts all other DVRs to shame, and can be as expensive or as cheap as you make it. Its also the only DVR software that is actually innovating.
     
  20. Ricky Smith macrumors regular

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    Boston, MA
    #20
    I was on the beta testing team for the what you now see for the current Tivo software and If I remember one of the new features was that you weren't required to use a phone line for the initial setup.
     
  21. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #21
    Two threads on this in two days on this subject?

    Anyway, I've got a Toshiba with a 160 GB hard drive + DVD-R that includes TV Guide service and that doesn't cost anything extra, but isn't likely to be so great. Find the programme, set the recording, and you're done. There is no telephone line involved. It pulls it from the cable/antenna source while the recorder is otherwise not in use.

    It's extra nice that I can pull video from a DV camera or another FireWire source or record from external inputs such as my A/V receiver.
     
  22. Lyle macrumors 68000

    Lyle

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    #22
    Yikes. What's worse is that, until you pointed it out, I didn't even realize that I was participating in two different threads. My brain was just giving my eyes instructions to look for "that thread about TiVo". :eek:
     
  23. adk thread starter macrumors 68000

    adk

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    #23
    I know. I admit I didn't see the other one, but when I did I saw it was a general "all praise the masterful Tivo" thread, and I felt that I had some real, specific questions.
     
  24. combatcolin macrumors 68020

    combatcolin

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    #24
    I have a Sony RDR HXD710

    160GB HD, Freeview and Dual Layer DVD recorder in 1 tidy case.

    80 odd channels and easy to use, well my GF can use it so it must be!

    Very happy with it!

    Very good altenative to Sky+
     
  25. XNine macrumors 68040

    XNine

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    #25
    Wow, that looks quite excellent, Ambitious! Thanks! Now I just have to figure out how to build a Linux box that is quite small and uses a tv card with very little funds... HRMMMMMMMMMMMM!
     

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