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Confused potential new user

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by abovethesink, Aug 26, 2013.

  1. abovethesink

    abovethesink Member

    301
    1
    Aug 26, 2013
    Hi. Thanks for any and all help in advance and I apologize for questions that are likely to be redundant to the community.

    Until recently we had DirecTV and really enjoyed the tech that came with it. Then we moved and have been stuck with Time Warner (Franklin County, NY) due to tree issues preventing service from either satellite company. We HATE the Time Warner HD DVR. It is just outdated, clunky tech. Now we are considering investing in TiVo. The new Roamio line looks awesome and we'd most likely get the Plus edition.

    I just don't quite understand how this works and I need some hand holding. Cost is the first issue. The startup fees are no problem, but right now it wouldn't be ideal for us to drop the lifetime subscription even if that does make more sense long term. We have one HD Time Warner DVR. Do we have to keep that? Can we downgrade boxes (or alternatively have no Time Warner box at all) without downgrading our TV package? If so, will I save any money with Time Warner and be able to cancel out the TiVo subscription fee?

    I guess my main question is this: What do I need from Time Warner to make the box work and how much will that impact my monthly bill from Time Warner? I'm hoping it cuts it down some to make up for the bill from TiVo. Time Warner is so unlikely to be able to help me out here based on past conversations with their "customer service" that I haven't even bothered calling them to ask and instead found this forum.

    Thanks again. If there is an article that explains all this then by all means point it out to me.
     
  2. mdscott

    mdscott Active Member

    1,601
    0
    Jun 26, 2002
    Hermosa...
    With the Roamio Plus box you will NOT need a TW box. What you do need from the is a CableCard. This is a credit card sized device f which goes into a slot on the Roamio. The CableCard decodes the TW signal. Some providers do not charge for the CableCard but most do. In our case Verizon gives us two free and charges $4.95 for the third one we are using.

    The FAQ about the Roamio on TiVo.com is pretty good as is the one on Weaknees.com. The Roamio forum on this board has all the information you would ever want/need but the sheer quantity can be daunting if you are new to the game.

    michael
     
  3. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    16,387
    2
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC

    My sympathies at being forced to turn to TWC.

    Although the people actually working down at the local office are probably just as nice as the ones in my town (as opposed to whoever you get on the phone if you ever get past the robot), it's still Time-Warner Cable, and there's a good chance that your happiness with them will be less than perfect.

    You've got a pretty good chance of liking a TiVo, though.

    What about Over The Air broadcasts?

    How is reception of those in your new area?


    I guess mounting your satellite dish on the top of one of those trees is out of the question? :)
     
  4. NorthAlabama

    NorthAlabama tabasco rules

    5,387
    6
    Apr 19, 2012
    sweet home, al
    here's a twc post from earlier this year with related info:
    a youtube video showing the hdui features:
    [media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bjN8_S4xVc4&feature=youtu.be[/media]​
    and romio setup with cable:
    [media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lCAUScfSXSA&feature=youtu.be[/media]​
    and just click on the tivo youtube channel for more videos.

    a search for "cable" on the tivo website yields these links:
     
  5. abovethesink

    abovethesink Member

    301
    1
    Aug 26, 2013
    Thanks, Michael. The TiVo faq was helpful.

    I've read about needing an additional tuning adapter previously, does this not apply to the new Roamio boxes?

    Anyway, I did some research and according to Time Warner's website, they charge $22 dollars a month for the HD DVR and $2.50 a month for the cable card. However, I'm on a promotional package until April so I'm not sure how that applies to me. It seems like I may actually save money a month past that even with the TiVo subscription, but these numbers are always so misleading. I guess I'll have to make a call.
     
  6. abovethesink

    abovethesink Member

    301
    1
    Aug 26, 2013
    We've had TWC in the past and seriously considered not majorly upgrading our apartment to avoid dealing with them, but in the end bit the bullet for a better everything else. As for OTA, just PBS. This is a rural area. Mounting on the trees is out of the question as well, unfortunately.
     
  7. mattack

    mattack Active Member

    20,734
    4
    Apr 9, 2001
    sunnyvale
    IF your area needs tuning adapters, then you will still need one with the Roamio. It's not built in. Unfortunately, this seems to lead to another point of failure for some users (failure as in "the tuning adapter gets confused so you don't end up recording the shows you think you do").

    But make sure you actually care about the channels that are ONLY available with the tuning adapter. If you don't care, then don't get it, and you will have _at least_ the reliability of the cable company DVR, most likely higher reliability.
     
  8. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    16,387
    2
    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    If they're "sharing" bandwidth via Switched Digital Video, where they only put one of the set of less demanded channels on the wire if someone asks for it, and you're going to want anything from any of the channels in that set, then you'll have to have a Tuning Adapter that's the same brand as their head end equipment.

    That's part of why TiVo doesn't just build a TA into the TiVo, because they don't and can't know in advance which brand will be needed for any particular customer.

    The cable companies, of course, know what brand of equipment their head end uses and can buy cable boxes and DVRs with the right TA built in.

    If you move again, the TiVo, and the shows recorded on it, can go with you, though.
     
  9. dlfl

    dlfl Cranky old novice

    6,996
    17
    Jul 6, 2006
    Near...
    I'm on TWC too -- unfortunately (there is no other cable TV choice for us).

    The SDV channels in our TWC region include about half of the HD channels, so it would be unthinkable to do without them. The TA will be free except for the emotional "cost" of occasional tuning failures and occasionally having to power cycle the TA and restart the TiVo when some or all of the SDV channels go missing. YMMV -- other TA users post they have little or no trouble with them. And yes all TiVo's need TA's to get SDV channels.

    OTA is worth considering but be aware that only the lowest cost Roamio can get OTA and to do that you have to configure it so it doesn't tune cable, i.e., you can't have OTA and cable both, as is possible with Series 3 and 4 Tivo's.
     
  10. abovethesink

    abovethesink Member

    301
    1
    Aug 26, 2013
    So I contacted TWC last night via chat to inquire about how my bill would change if I switched from their HD DVR to a cable card for a TiVo box. They started to help me and threw out the number of my DVR costing $13 (no idea where that came from), but then they backed off and wouldn't commit to any numbers. They gave me a number to call that they said would be available until 10 PM. I called immediately when I was done with the chat, which was 9 PM, and the number was closed.

    I called the number today and was placed waiting for a rep for fifteen minutes or so. When they answered I explained the situation and they put me on hold for twenty minutes only to tell me they couldn't help me and gave me a different number to call. I called them, got through a little more quickly, and was told my bill would go up the price of the cable card ($3.50/mo) as the DVR is included in my package rate. I asked what would happen in April when my package ended and they said they couldn't know that. Great.

    I've been annoyed with TWC for a while. They told us at four months of service that we would receive a Visa gift card. When my wife contacted them wondering why we hadn't, they said they needed our initial service confirmation number. NO EVER TOLD US THAT WOULD BE NEEDED! I'm not even sure the number was ever even given to ask. We asked if there would have been an email with the info since neither of us ever delete email, they said yes, and while we both had lots of email from TWC, none had that info. They then told us we were SOL. That set up with an obvious attempt to never actually have to follow through with the promotion plus just how awful the tech is means I would leave these guys in a heart beat if I had another option.

    Now I find out that I have to pay for the HD DVR whether I have it or not because apparently I am in some kind of TV and internet package. Who knew? They are about to create a cord cutter. Anyone think if I were to call and start to disconnect services that they would appease me here at all?
     
  11. dlfl

    dlfl Cranky old novice

    6,996
    17
    Jul 6, 2006
    Near...
    Yes, TWC excels at generating cord cutters. Their "bundles" are a great way to avoid transparency of costs for specific items and their published per-item prices are so high that everyone prefers a bundle. It's probably all legal although quite irritating. I know someone who uses a TWC DVR. They have a bundle that costs the same as mine (CableCARD and TiVo setup) but includes an additional channel package. They can do this because they are the only cable provider in this area, which is true in most areas of the country.
     
  12. CuriousMark

    CuriousMark Forum Denizen

    2,606
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    Jan 13, 2005
    SoCal
    This may be a violation of FCC regulations. If you drop their DVR, they are required to offer some form of discount or compensation. It may be worth reminding them of that in your next call. If they don't budge you can complain to the FCC.
     

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