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The reason Tivo is 'on' all the time

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Anonymous
April 15, 2005 7:00:05 PM

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

is because it's more convenient for Tivo to be able to reach it any time,
day or night. But if you consider the electricity consumed by millions of
Tivos spinning away through the night, it amounts to a prodigious waste of
power, not to mention added wear on the moving parts.

Norm Strong

More about : reason tivo time

April 16, 2005 2:45:32 AM

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

<normanstrong@comcast.net> wrote in
news:NZGdnSGuB5L5pP3fRVn-tA@comcast.com:

> is because it's more convenient for Tivo to be able to reach it any
> time, day or night.

I see we forgot our tin hat today.

> not to mention added wear on the moving parts.

And our intelligence.

Yeah yeah, I know, don't feed the trolls. But this one was just so cute
with the sad puppy eyes and all.

--
Minister of All Things Digital & Electronic, and Holder of Past Knowledge
stile99@email.com. Cabal# 24601-fnord | Sleep is irrelevant.
I speak for no one but myself, and |Caffeine will be assimilated.
no one else speaks for me. O- | Decaf is futile.
April 18, 2005 12:07:02 AM

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

<normanstrong@comcast.net> wrote in message
news:NZGdnSGuB5L5pP3fRVn-tA@comcast.com...
> is because it's more convenient for Tivo to be able to reach it any time,
> day or night.

Tivo has never initiated contact with either of my machines. All contact
has been made via my Tivos calling home at their scheduled (sometimes
forced) times. All service data downloads made via the Discovery Channel
are scheduled during those calls.



> But if you consider the electricity consumed by millions of Tivos spinning
> away through the night, it amounts to a prodigious waste of power

The entire television industry could be considered to be a "a prodigious
waste of power" as could energy used to support your existence.
Related resources
Anonymous
April 18, 2005 2:49:38 AM

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

>>But if you consider the electricity consumed by millions of Tivos spinning
>>away through the night, it amounts to a prodigious waste of power
>
>
> The entire television industry could be considered to be a "a prodigious
> waste of power" as could energy used to support your existence.
>

Well, to be fair, it's not completely an invalid point (though the thing
about Tivo contacting us seems a bit paranoic). Saving energy is an
enviable goal, and it's not impossible that Tivo's duty cycle could be
made a bit more energy efficient. For example, say that instead of
storing the continuous 30 minute buffer on the HDD, the DVR stored in
instead on flash memory, and then powered down the drive when not
actively recording an entire program?

The amt of flash memory required would be cost prohibitive right now,
but eventually it might make sense.

Randy S.
April 18, 2005 4:53:14 PM

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

On Fri, 15 Apr 2005 15:00:05 -0700, <normanstrong@comcast.net> wrote:

>is because it's more convenient for Tivo to be able to reach it any time,
>day or night. But if you consider the electricity consumed by millions of
>Tivos spinning away through the night, it amounts to a prodigious waste of
>power, not to mention added wear on the moving parts.
>
>Norm Strong
>


Tivo is old technology.

My cable DVR 'shuts down' when it's not recording. It's much more
advanced than Tivo.

Sean
April 18, 2005 11:39:21 PM

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

* Sean Wrote in alt.video.ptv.tivo:

> On Fri, 15 Apr 2005 15:00:05 -0700, <normanstrong@comcast.net>
> wrote:
>
>>is because it's more convenient for Tivo to be able to reach it
>>any time, day or night. But if you consider the electricity
>>consumed by millions of Tivos spinning away through the night, it
>>amounts to a prodigious waste of power, not to mention added wear
>>on the moving parts.
>>
>
> Tivo is old technology.
>
> My cable DVR 'shuts down' when it's not recording. It's much more
> advanced than Tivo.
>

Yeah, except it also shuts down while it IS recording also.

--
David
Anonymous
April 19, 2005 12:43:15 AM

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

Major power consumption is not in a disk drive that
consumes single digit watts. Power consumption is the
electronics and processor that consume on the order of 100+
watts. And in the power supply that can be as low as 65%
efficient.

Replace the magnetic head disk drive with flash memory, or
with newer technologies such as ferroelectric RAM (FeRAM) (see
www.ramtron.com), magnetic RAM (MRAM), ovanic unifed memory
(OUM) (see www.intel.com), or the optical disk drive (due out
this next year from IBM and others). All eliminate the
constantly moving parts of a drive. And yet still the big
energy consumer remains on motherboard and inside the power
supply.

Energy reduction is an admirable objective. Especially
desirable in a niche market (see next paragraph). But the
constantly moving disk drive is not the major consumer of that
energy. Eliminating the disk drive does not solve an energy
consumption problem.

Powering Tivo constantly is not problematic to those on the
grid. However it remains a problem for those dependent on
non-traditional energy sources. Anything that depends on a
constant energy source causes greater energy consumption and
losses when power is from a local generator, wind, or solar
power. A Tivo that could eliminate a need for constant
external power would be an asset to this market. However the
market is not very large. The hardware redesign would be
significant and expensive.

"Randy S." wrote:
> Well, to be fair, it's not completely an invalid point (though the thing
> about Tivo contacting us seems a bit paranoic). Saving energy is an
> enviable goal, and it's not impossible that Tivo's duty cycle could be
> made a bit more energy efficient. For example, say that instead of
> storing the continuous 30 minute buffer on the HDD, the DVR stored in
> instead on flash memory, and then powered down the drive when not
> actively recording an entire program?
>
> The amt of flash memory required would be cost prohibitive right now,
> but eventually it might make sense.
>
> Randy S.
Anonymous
April 19, 2005 2:23:34 AM

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

w_tom wrote:
> Major power consumption is not in a disk drive that
> consumes single digit watts. Power consumption is the
> electronics and processor that consume on the order of 100+
> watts. And in the power supply that can be as low as 65%
> efficient.

Dude, nobody's listening to you. You demand numbers yet make numbers
for yourself out of the air. You offer no useful content, please stop
bothering an otherwise informative group.

I can tell you for certain that the processor in a Tivo DVR uses nothing
close to 100 watts, they don't use Intel P4 processors or anything
close. And what the hell does the efficiency of the power supply have
anything to do with it? Sure, no power supply is 100% efficient, but
you're going to need a PS whether you have a hard drive or not.
Seriously dude, you need to get out of your rubber room more.

Randy S.
Anonymous
April 19, 2005 3:41:16 AM

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

Then put up some numbers rather that use insults to mask
your technical ignorance. How much power does your Tivo
consume? If you can post, then have enough balls to put up
numbers. It takes balls to put up a fact that can be
confirmed. You tell me. Where is this massive energy savings
using flash memory when disk drives consume only single digit
watts? Show me. Where are the energy savings? I will
assume no response again means you have not the knowledge to
back up you assumptions - which is why you only responded with
insults.

Those who insult cannot put up numbers. But go ahead.
Prove me wrong. Show me that you know more than just how to
insult and write fiction. Put up the numbers.

"Randy S." wrote:
> w_tom wrote:
>> Major power consumption is not in a disk drive that
>> consumes single digit watts. Power consumption is the
>> electronics and processor that consume on the order of 100+
>> watts. And in the power supply that can be as low as 65%
>> efficient.
>
> Dude, nobody's listening to you. You demand numbers yet make numbers
> for yourself out of the air. You offer no useful content, please stop
> bothering an otherwise informative group.
>
> I can tell you for certain that the processor in a Tivo DVR uses nothing
> close to 100 watts, they don't use Intel P4 processors or anything
> close. And what the hell does the efficiency of the power supply have
> anything to do with it? Sure, no power supply is 100% efficient, but
> you're going to need a PS whether you have a hard drive or not.
> Seriously dude, you need to get out of your rubber room more.
>
> Randy S.
April 19, 2005 8:35:08 AM

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

w_tom <w_tom1@hotmail.com> wrote in news:42647DDC.1273F28F@hotmail.com:

> Then put up some numbers rather that use insults to mask
> your technical ignorance. How much power does your Tivo
> consume? If you can post, then have enough balls to put up

What? Mommy won't read the label to you? Too stupid to read the posts
where TiVo power consumption has already been well-discussed?

You've ceased to be amusing. Expect no further replies until you get a
brain.

So basically...expect no further replies.

> numbers. It takes balls to put up a fact that can be
> confirmed. You tell me. Where is this massive energy savings

I guess you have no balls, because as much as you cry about 'the numbers',
the few you have posted have been easily shot down.

--
Minister of All Things Digital & Electronic, and Holder of Past Knowledge
stile99@email.com. Cabal# 24601-fnord | Sleep is irrelevant.
I speak for no one but myself, and |Caffeine will be assimilated.
no one else speaks for me. O- | Decaf is futile.
Anonymous
April 19, 2005 11:52:12 PM

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

Why do the same users repeatedly post insults; never once
post a useful fact? They are power users. Some do have a
good grasp of how to operate Tivo. But no clue what actually
happens inside.

Randy S posts total nonsense about reducing power with flash
memory. He knows how to run Tivo. But he only knows how to
push the buttons; has no idea what those buttons really do.
Notice he never once puts a number to energy 'saved' by flash
memory. He cannot. That requires technical knowledge.
Something not needed to be a power user.

Tivo's largest power consumers are the processor and other
peripheral ICs on and connected directly to motherboard.
Consumes on the order of 100 watts compared to less than
single digit watts consumed by a disk drive. Replacing disk
drive with flash memory provides only trivial power reduction
- as numbers so painfully demonstrate.

Howard again posts insults as he does routinely in replies
to others. He never posts useful numbers. That would require
intelligence. Those without knowledge instead must post
insults. If Howard would just stop posting as he repeatedly
threatens, then the discussion could move into reality.

Howard wrote:
> What? Mommy won't read the label to you? Too stupid to read the posts
> where TiVo power consumption has already been well-discussed?
>
> You've ceased to be amusing. Expect no further replies until you get a
> brain.
>
> So basically...expect no further replies.
> ...
Anonymous
April 20, 2005 7:44:56 PM

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

In article <426599AC.5CC9315E@hotmail.com>, w_tom wrote:
> Notice he never once puts a number to energy 'saved' by flash
> memory.
>
> Tivo's largest power consumers are the processor and other
> peripheral ICs on and connected directly to motherboard.
> Consumes on the order of 100 watts compared to less than
> single digit watts consumed by a disk drive.

So what's worse: somebody who doesn't post numbers and relies on
reasonable arguments, or somebody who posts incorrect numbers
and has nonsensical arguments?

A TiVo consumes 35-40 watts. It's been directly measured by several
people as reported on TiVoCommunity.
Anonymous
April 20, 2005 10:06:42 PM

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

There are plenty of reasonable arguments without numbers -
such as weapons of mass destruction. A reasonable sounding
argument that is not supported by numbers is called
propaganda. However you have provided a most interesting
number. Now I have some numbers work with here. That's the
difference. One who provides numbers is willing to risk peer
review. One who is just guessing (such as flash saving all
that money) avoids numbers so we don't see his wild
speculation.

Thanks for interesting numbers. I did not know Tivo
hardware reduced its power consumption that low.

Chris Buckley wrote:
> So what's worse: somebody who doesn't post numbers and relies on
> reasonable arguments, or somebody who posts incorrect numbers
> and has nonsensical arguments?
>
> A TiVo consumes 35-40 watts. It's been directly measured by several
> people as reported on TiVoCommunity.
Anonymous
April 21, 2005 3:57:50 AM

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

On 2005-04-20, w_tom <w_tom1@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
> Thanks for interesting numbers. I did not know Tivo
> hardware reduced its power consumption that low.

reduced its power consumption that low? I don't think this is anything
TiVo did - it's just how low it IS.

You realize the CPU (IBM 403gcx - an embedded 32bit processor) in my TiVo
is spec'd to deliver 400mW at typical usage?

I'd say 35-40 watts is pretty high (I actually thought the range I read
was 25-40 but I don't care enough to search for this).


>
> Chris Buckley wrote:
>> So what's worse: somebody who doesn't post numbers and relies on
>> reasonable arguments, or somebody who posts incorrect numbers
>> and has nonsensical arguments?
>>
>> A TiVo consumes 35-40 watts. It's been directly measured by several
>> people as reported on TiVoCommunity.
Anonymous
April 21, 2005 3:57:51 AM

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

Mike Hunt wrote:
> On 2005-04-20, w_tom <w_tom1@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
>> Thanks for interesting numbers. I did not know Tivo
>>hardware reduced its power consumption that low.
>
>
> reduced its power consumption that low? I don't think this is anything
> TiVo did - it's just how low it IS.
>
> You realize the CPU (IBM 403gcx - an embedded 32bit processor) in my TiVo
> is spec'd to deliver 400mW at typical usage?
>
> I'd say 35-40 watts is pretty high (I actually thought the range I read
> was 25-40 but I don't care enough to search for this).

What is clear is that he's arguing about something he knows little
about. He makes claims of Processor wattage of 100 Watts, when it's
likely 1/100th of that. He bitches because I conjectured that at some
point using flash memory for live buffering might be more efficient than
moving hardware. Note the "at some point", meaning I know that it isn't
feasible now, but we all know that technology moves on and that flash
memory (or it's equivalent, i.e. solid state storage that doesn't
require maintenance power) will become cheaper and more efficient.

But of course the biggest benefit is that solid state hardware just
fails *far* less often.

Randy S.
Anonymous
April 21, 2005 3:57:52 AM

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

Randy S. (rswittNO@SPAMgmail.com) wrote in alt.video.ptv.tivo:
> What is clear is that he's arguing about something he knows little
> about. He makes claims of Processor wattage of 100 Watts, when it's
> likely 1/100th of that.

He must be thinking of modern Pentium 4 processors, which do use 50-100W.

> He bitches because I conjectured that at some
> point using flash memory for live buffering might be more efficient than
> moving hardware. Note the "at some point", meaning I know that it isn't
> feasible now, but we all know that technology moves on and that flash
> memory (or it's equivalent, i.e. solid state storage that doesn't
> require maintenance power) will become cheaper and more efficient.

Flash memory can do the job today. Some can write as fast as 20MB/sec,
which is 160Mbps. TiVo recordings are never more than 19Mbps (even on an
HD TiVo).

But, for the buffer, I don't see the value of using non-volatile memory.
If you turn off the power to the box, you lose the buffer under the current
system, so why not do it the same way with a solid-state buffer? You'd
still need 2-4GB of memory to do the job, but it can be *slow* memory, so
it can be cheap and low-power consumption.

--
Jeff Rife |
| http://www.nabs.net/Cartoons/Dilbert/DoomedProject.jpg
Anonymous
April 21, 2005 11:58:54 AM

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

Jeff Rife wrote:
> Randy S. (rswittNO@SPAMgmail.com) wrote in alt.video.ptv.tivo:
>
>>What is clear is that he's arguing about something he knows little
>>about. He makes claims of Processor wattage of 100 Watts, when it's
>>likely 1/100th of that.
>
>
> He must be thinking of modern Pentium 4 processors, which do use 50-100W.

Yep, I'm sure he is (the newest P4's consume over 100W), but it in now
way applied to this situation and he's naive to think it does.

>
>> He bitches because I conjectured that at some
>>point using flash memory for live buffering might be more efficient than
>>moving hardware. Note the "at some point", meaning I know that it isn't
>>feasible now, but we all know that technology moves on and that flash
>>memory (or it's equivalent, i.e. solid state storage that doesn't
>>require maintenance power) will become cheaper and more efficient.
>
>
> Flash memory can do the job today. Some can write as fast as 20MB/sec,
> which is 160Mbps. TiVo recordings are never more than 19Mbps (even on an
> HD TiVo).

I don't think it's currently feasible because the size required would be
very expensive for an inexpensive box.

>
> But, for the buffer, I don't see the value of using non-volatile memory.
> If you turn off the power to the box, you lose the buffer under the current
> system, so why not do it the same way with a solid-state buffer? You'd
> still need 2-4GB of memory to do the job, but it can be *slow* memory, so
> it can be cheap and low-power consumption.

You know, I was thinking about that while I was writing the last post,
and you're absolutely correct, regular memory would work just fine.
However that much RAM is still too expensive for a $100 box. Prices
keep falling though!

Randy S.
Anonymous
April 21, 2005 9:17:52 PM

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

The IBM403gcx is a Power PC chip; not Intel/AMD
compatible. It is equivalent in power to a 486 or original
Pentium chip. Its primary market is only as an embedded
controller. Are you sure that is your main processor, or part
of a peripheral Tivo function?

Mike Hunt wrote:
> reduced its power consumption that low? I don't think this is
> anything TiVo did - it's just how low it IS.
>
> You realize the CPU (IBM 403gcx - an embedded 32bit processor) in
> my TiVo is spec'd to deliver 400mW at typical usage?
>
> I'd say 35-40 watts is pretty high (I actually thought the range I read
> was 25-40 but I don't care enough to search for this).
Anonymous
April 21, 2005 9:51:32 PM

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

w_tom wrote:
> The IBM403gcx is a Power PC chip; not Intel/AMD
> compatible. It is equivalent in power to a 486 or original
> Pentium chip. Its primary market is only as an embedded
> controller. Are you sure that is your main processor, or part
> of a peripheral Tivo function?

Yes, he's sure, who the hell said it had to be Intel/AMD compatible? :

http://www.9thtee.com/insidetivo.htm

Will you please crawl back under your rock now?

Randy S.
Anonymous
April 22, 2005 1:39:38 AM

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

On 2005-04-21, w_tom <w_tom1@hotmail.com> wrote:
> The IBM403gcx is a Power PC chip; not Intel/AMD
> compatible. It is equivalent in power to a 486 or original
> Pentium chip. Its primary market is only as an embedded
> controller. Are you sure that is your main processor, or part
> of a peripheral Tivo function?

From this, it is now obvious to me you don't know much about TiVo hardware
and makes me wonder why you were so strong in your previous arguments
about TiVo power usage without first understanding the product.

Yes, the 403gcx is the CPU of the TiVo. The TiVo uses PowerPC hardware
and software. The boxes are NOT Intel/AMD machines. The TiVo doesn't
need a fancy CPU - it has dedicated hardware to deal with the MPEG
encoding/decoding.
April 22, 2005 2:07:32 AM

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

Mike Hunt <in2sheep@yahoo.com> wrote in news:116g7cqmf1kfd87
@corp.supernews.com:

> From this, it is now obvious to me you don't know much about TiVo hardware
> and makes me wonder why you were so strong in your previous arguments
> about TiVo power usage without first understanding the product.

Actually, I thought we had already established he was here just to argue, and
lacked a foundation of even the most basic of knowledge.

--
Minister of All Things Digital & Electronic, and Holder of Past Knowledge
stile99@email.com. Cabal# 24601-fnord | Sleep is irrelevant.
I speak for no one but myself, and |Caffeine will be assimilated.
no one else speaks for me. O- | Decaf is futile.
Anonymous
April 24, 2005 11:41:23 PM

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

w_tom wrote:
> The IBM403gcx is a Power PC chip; not Intel/AMD
> compatible. It is equivalent in power to a 486 or original
> Pentium chip. Its primary market is only as an embedded
> controller. Are you sure that is your main processor, or part
> of a peripheral Tivo function?

Yes, we are sure it is the main processor.

telnet joe-tivo
=[tivo:root]-# cat /proc/cpuinfo
processor : 0
cpu : IBM 403GCX
clock : 54MHz
revision : 20.1
bogomips : 53.86
machine : Teleworld Customer Device
Anonymous
April 25, 2005 4:34:09 PM

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

In article <qbudnToZNrROxfHfRVn-1Q@comcast.com>,
Joe Smith <joe@inwap.com> wrote:

> w_tom wrote:
> > The IBM403gcx is a Power PC chip; not Intel/AMD
> > compatible. It is equivalent in power to a 486 or original
> > Pentium chip. Its primary market is only as an embedded
> > controller. Are you sure that is your main processor, or part
> > of a peripheral Tivo function?
>
> Yes, we are sure it is the main processor.
>
> telnet joe-tivo
> =[tivo:root]-# cat /proc/cpuinfo
> processor : 0
> cpu : IBM 403GCX
> clock : 54MHz
> revision : 20.1
> bogomips : 53.86
> machine : Teleworld Customer Device

My Hughes HDVR2 returns:

system type : TiVo UMA P0 board
processor : 0
cpu model : R5432 V3.0
BogoMIPS : 161.79
unaligned accesses : 1650979
wait instruction : no
microsecond timers : yes
tlb_entries : 48
extra interrupt vector : no
hardware watchpoint : yes
spurious interrupts : 12818
cycle counter frequency : 81003906


which is a MIPS processor
!