Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

TiVo vs. Cable DVR

Last response: in Home Theatre
Share
Anonymous
June 14, 2005 4:23:19 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

I currently have a TimeWarner DVR (Scientific Atlanta Explorer 8300) and
have been contemplating for a very long time about buying a TiVo. I have a
few questions for the TiVo pros and non-pros in this group before I make a
possible purchase.

1) On a TiVo, can I record two shows at a time while watching another? I
know with the DVR I have now I can do just that.

2) Does TiVo have a built in PiP? The DVR I have now does and allows me to
watch two channels at the same time and swap out the PiP channel with the
main picture or vice versa.

3) Is it difficult to hook up? I've heard that many people have had trouble
getting their cable box to work with the TiVo box. I think what I'm asking
here is are the two boxes going to be totally compatible or are there going
to be any conflicts that are going to force me to go back to what I have
now?

4) What are the Pros and Cons of the TiVo box over the box I have now?

I think that's all for now. If I think of any more questions, I'll be sure
to ask them.

Thanks in advance.

Kindest Regards,
Mark

More about : tivo cable dvr

Anonymous
June 14, 2005 4:23:20 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

I have a sneaking suspicion that this is flamebait, but here goes:

> I currently have a TimeWarner DVR (Scientific Atlanta Explorer 8300) and
> have been contemplating for a very long time about buying a TiVo. I have a
> few questions for the TiVo pros and non-pros in this group before I make a
> possible purchase.
>
> 1) On a TiVo, can I record two shows at a time while watching another? I
> know with the DVR I have now I can do just that.

No, current standalone Tivo's do not have dual tuners. Directv
integrated Tivo's do, and can do what you describe, but until the next
generation of Standalone Tivo's are released, they do not support that.
To address some other hardware shortcomings before you ask about them,
SA Tivo's also do not support 5.1 (or greater) surround sound, Hi-def
signals or component video output. Directivo units support all of that.

>
> 2) Does TiVo have a built in PiP? The DVR I have now does and allows me to
> watch two channels at the same time and swap out the PiP channel with the
> main picture or vice versa.

No, there's no PIP. OTOH, there's really no need since there is only
one tuner. Simply pause the recorded program while your checking out
the live content, or vice versa. On the dual tuner Directivo you can
easily flip between the tuners, again, with pause and rewind available,
I see little need for PIP except for maybe live sporting events.

> 3) Is it difficult to hook up? I've heard that many people have had trouble
> getting their cable box to work with the TiVo box. I think what I'm asking
> here is are the two boxes going to be totally compatible or are there going
> to be any conflicts that are going to force me to go back to what I have
> now?

Setup is very easy. The only problem that can occur from time to time
is in the control of the cable box (if you need to use one for digital
or scrambled channels). Typically SA Tivos must use IR blasters to
control the cable box, and sometimes the remote codes fail, leaving
recordings incorrect because the box was on the wrong station. When
well setup this rarely occurs, however. Some cable boxes support serial
cable connections to the Tivo, which makes for a more reliable connection.

> 4) What are the Pros and Cons of the TiVo box over the box I have now?

In a couple of words? Software functionality, reliability, and ease of
use. And to a slightly lesser extent, networking and modifiability.

Software functionality -
Tivo provides several recording options that other DVR's don't. The
main one is "Wishlists", which allow you to record any program (or
subset of programs, like "sports") that corresponds to a keyword or
words. You like Angelina Jolie? Setup a wish list on "Angelina Jolie"
and you'll get not only every movie, but every talk show appearance and
documentary related to her. There are also lots of other options in
managing recordings.

Reliability -
Tivo rarely makes mistakes. Most mistakes that do occur are
attributable to guide errors, not software. It means a lot to be able
to trust that your recordings will be there when you expect them to be.
This is in contrast to widely acknowledged occurances of Scientific
Atlanta boxes routinely losing recordings, making partial or unviewable
recordings, etc.

Ease of Use-
My grandmother can use a Tivo (once hooked up). With little to no
instruction. Tivo's use is very intuitive, and that means a lot to the
non-technophile public. It just does what you expect it to do, and
things are where you expect them to be. The biggest newbie question we
see here are about extraneous recordings showing up because of
"suggestions", rarely are they questions about how to use the Tivo.

Networking-
Hook your Tivo to your wireless (or wired) network, and you get more
frequent updates, ability to display photos and play music from your
computer, display weather updates, movie times and other things. You
can schedule recordings from over the Internet (you can do that w/out
network as well, but it's quicker with). Transfer recorded programs to
your PC and burn them to DVD.

Modifiability-
Want more storage space in your Tivo? Add a bigger hard drive. Want to
enable web and ftp access to your recorded programs? (legally) Hack the
OS. You can do just about anything you want to your Tivo as long as you
don't try to steal service.
>
> I think that's all for now. If I think of any more questions, I'll be sure
> to ask them.

Well, I tried to answer a few you didn't ask as well. The fact is that
cable DVR's have a few hardware related benefits over Tivo right now
(dual tuners, surround sound, HD). Most of us here feel the other
benefits outweigh them (naturally), due to the unreliability and general
"clunkiness" (that's a word that comes up a lot from users who have
converted from cable DVR's to Tivos) of the cable supplied DVRs.

Randy S.
Anonymous
June 14, 2005 6:40:50 AM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

"Randy S." <rswittNO@SPAMgmail.com> wrote in message
news:D 8lcff$ha4$1@spnode25.nerdc.ufl.edu...
>I have a sneaking suspicion that this is flamebait, but here goes:

LOL!

>
>> I currently have a TimeWarner DVR (Scientific Atlanta Explorer 8300) and
>> have been contemplating for a very long time about buying a TiVo. I have
>> a few questions for the TiVo pros and non-pros in this group before I
>> make a possible purchase.
>>
>> 1) On a TiVo, can I record two shows at a time while watching another? I
>> know with the DVR I have now I can do just that.
>
> No, current standalone Tivo's do not have dual tuners. Directv integrated
> Tivo's do, and can do what you describe, but until the next generation of
> Standalone Tivo's are released, they do not support that. To address some
> other hardware shortcomings before you ask about them, SA Tivo's also do
> not support 5.1 (or greater) surround sound, Hi-def signals or component
> video output. Directivo units support all of that.

I just got used to my dual tuners. I guess I can live without it if I move
up to a TiVo, but what if I have two shows that I want to tape and they are
on at the exact same time?

>
>>
>> 2) Does TiVo have a built in PiP? The DVR I have now does and allows me
>> to watch two channels at the same time and swap out the PiP channel with
>> the main picture or vice versa.
>
> No, there's no PIP. OTOH, there's really no need since there is only one
> tuner. Simply pause the recorded program while your checking out the live
> content, or vice versa. On the dual tuner Directivo you can easily flip
> between the tuners, again, with pause and rewind available, I see little
> need for PIP except for maybe live sporting events.

I guess I can live without this too. I didn't really use it that much, but
liked that it was there if I did need it.

>
>> 3) Is it difficult to hook up? I've heard that many people have had
>> trouble getting their cable box to work with the TiVo box. I think what
>> I'm asking here is are the two boxes going to be totally compatible or
>> are there going to be any conflicts that are going to force me to go back
>> to what I have now?
>
> Setup is very easy. The only problem that can occur from time to time is
> in the control of the cable box (if you need to use one for digital or
> scrambled channels). Typically SA Tivos must use IR blasters to control
> the cable box, and sometimes the remote codes fail, leaving recordings
> incorrect because the box was on the wrong station. When well setup this
> rarely occurs, however. Some cable boxes support serial cable connections
> to the Tivo, which makes for a more reliable connection.

I don't think my cable box supports serial cable connections, but then again
I don't think the DVR boxes and Digital boxes are the same, so it just
might. All I do know is that the DVR has an S-Video hookup and a USB
connection on the front that isn't currently used and a SATA connection on
the back. And I do know what you mean by the IR blasters being flaky. My
sister's VCR has one of those things and man is it worthless. :-)

>
>> 4) What are the Pros and Cons of the TiVo box over the box I have now?
>
> In a couple of words? Software functionality, reliability, and ease of
> use. And to a slightly lesser extent, networking and modifiability.

Looks like I just might be moving up to a TiVo. I wish I had DirectTV
instead of Digital Cable because those TiVo boxes sound a whole lot better.

>
> Software functionality -
> Tivo provides several recording options that other DVR's don't. The main
> one is "Wishlists", which allow you to record any program (or subset of
> programs, like "sports") that corresponds to a keyword or words. You like
> Angelina Jolie? Setup a wish list on "Angelina Jolie" and you'll get not
> only every movie, but every talk show appearance and documentary related
> to her. There are also lots of other options in managing recordings.
>
> Reliability -
> Tivo rarely makes mistakes. Most mistakes that do occur are attributable
> to guide errors, not software. It means a lot to be able to trust that
> your recordings will be there when you expect them to be. This is in
> contrast to widely acknowledged occurances of Scientific Atlanta boxes
> routinely losing recordings, making partial or unviewable recordings, etc.
>
> Ease of Use-
> My grandmother can use a Tivo (once hooked up). With little to no
> instruction. Tivo's use is very intuitive, and that means a lot to the
> non-technophile public. It just does what you expect it to do, and things
> are where you expect them to be. The biggest newbie question we see here
> are about extraneous recordings showing up because of "suggestions",
> rarely are they questions about how to use the Tivo.
>
> Networking-
> Hook your Tivo to your wireless (or wired) network, and you get more
> frequent updates, ability to display photos and play music from your
> computer, display weather updates, movie times and other things. You can
> schedule recordings from over the Internet (you can do that w/out network
> as well, but it's quicker with). Transfer recorded programs to your PC
> and burn them to DVD.
>
> Modifiability-
> Want more storage space in your Tivo? Add a bigger hard drive. Want to
> enable web and ftp access to your recorded programs? (legally) Hack the
> OS. You can do just about anything you want to your Tivo as long as you
> don't try to steal service.
>>
>> I think that's all for now. If I think of any more questions, I'll be
>> sure to ask them.
>
> Well, I tried to answer a few you didn't ask as well. The fact is that
> cable DVR's have a few hardware related benefits over Tivo right now (dual
> tuners, surround sound, HD). Most of us here feel the other benefits
> outweigh them (naturally), due to the unreliability and general
> "clunkiness" (that's a word that comes up a lot from users who have
> converted from cable DVR's to Tivos) of the cable supplied DVRs.

Thanks Randy!

>
> Randy S.
June 15, 2005 2:53:02 PM

Archived from groups: alt.video.ptv.tivo (More info?)

On Tue, 14 Jun 2005 00:23:19 GMT, "Mark Rossi"
<JollyOne25@stny.rr.com> wrote:

>I currently have a TimeWarner DVR (Scientific Atlanta Explorer 8300) and
>have been contemplating for a very long time about buying a TiVo. I have a
>few questions for the TiVo pros and non-pros in this group before I make a
>possible purchase.
>
>1) On a TiVo, can I record two shows at a time while watching another? I
>know with the DVR I have now I can do just that.
>
>2) Does TiVo have a built in PiP? The DVR I have now does and allows me to
>watch two channels at the same time and swap out the PiP channel with the
>main picture or vice versa.
>
>3) Is it difficult to hook up? I've heard that many people have had trouble
>getting their cable box to work with the TiVo box. I think what I'm asking
>here is are the two boxes going to be totally compatible or are there going
>to be any conflicts that are going to force me to go back to what I have
>now?
>
>4) What are the Pros and Cons of the TiVo box over the box I have now?
>
>I think that's all for now. If I think of any more questions, I'll be sure
>to ask them.
>
>Thanks in advance.
>
>Kindest Regards,
>Mark
>

Don't listen to thes Rumpswabs.

The Tivo you buy will not do HD.

It will not do full Dolby.

It will have only 1 tuner.

It won't let you know how much disk space is used/left.

etc.

etc.

It will cost you big money and it when it's obsolete or breaks
you get to buy a new one.

Don't do it.

Sean
!