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DirecTV to FIOS TV - on the fence...questions about equipment and install

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by jrwelshon, Feb 9, 2014.

  1. Feb 9, 2014 #1 of 10

    jrwelshon New Member

    Feb 9, 2014
    First, I know this is a long post and covers lots of my questions, so thanks in advance if you take the time to read. And thanks for your ideas and insight.

    thinking about switching from dtv to fios. want to know about best equipment and cabling options and any changes I might have to make. would like to have as little disruption to my current setup as possible.

    i can call verizon to get info on program packages, equipment, etc., but i find it hard to find out about installation options. that's why i'm turning to the informative DBSTalk community. I know every situation is different, but thought I might get some good ideas here. It would be nice if you could get a verizon tech to visit your house in advance to find out exactly what is going to be done during the install so that you could plan accordingly, but I realize that cannot be done.

    Current setup

    single family home
    dish on roof

    master bedroom - top floor - hr23
    2 cables route from dish to master bedroom

    basement - bottom floor - hr20
    family room - main floor - hr20

    2 cables from dish to basement, then connects to 2 port splitter in basement, 1 goes to tv in basement, other routes up to family room tv

    have verizon fios internet
    ont outside wall garage
    psu and battery backup inside wall garage
    ethernet cable from ont to small white box mounted inside wall garage
    ethernet cable w/ rj45 plugged into small white box and routed up to my office wall plate on top floor
    ethernet cable from wall plate then plugs into Netgear N600 wireless router

    also have Netgear universal dual band range extender in family room


    I am very interested in having hd dvr capabilities in each room
    I am interested in streaming recorded programming to my ipad in the house (with DTV I would have to purchase GenieGo) Can this be done with FIOS TV without additional equipment?
    if going with verizon fios supplied equipment, what are the best equipment options (multiroom dvr family room and basic hd dvr bedroom and basement?)
    do their dvrs have built in wireless or does the equipment have to be plugged in wired?
    if wired does it have to be plugged in directly to the main wireless router, or can it be plugged into extender?
    i understand verizon also has to install one of their routers (actiontec i believe) how does this connect to your current main router and what is it used for (guide, on demand)?
    can a 4 port splitter be installed in my garage and then a home run to each new dvr?

    if i decide to go with other dvr equipment options, such as tivo, is the setup similar?

    i like the idea of not paying a monthly charge for verizon boxes, but i understand i would still pay a monthly for each cable card. Also I know there is an upfront cost for the tivo equipment.

    i believe this also negates the need for the verizon router, but i would loose on demand and verizon supplied guide features.

    main concern here is the cabling for the tivo equipment.

    i could get a roamio for the family room and a mini for the master bedroom and basement. i think i read somewhere that these devices have to be plugged into your wireless internet router. is this true or are there other options.

    also, i know there is a cost difference between verizon and dtv options, and from my initial review the fios tv option is a little more costly. I initially went with DTV because of NFL Sunday Ticket, but stopped purchasing a couple years ago because of costs. Also want to get away from snow and rain affecting ability to watch tv.

    someone commented I may be able to just route cable from the TiVo boxes to the Verizon router (MoCa) negating the need for connecting via Ethernet.

    Thanks for your reply and any suggestions
  2. Feb 9, 2014 #2 of 10

    BigJimOutlaw Well-Known Member

    Mar 21, 2004
    I'll simplify it... Fios makes whole-home viewing with a Tivo pretty simple, thanks to their router which has built-in moca.

    For reliable streaming between the Tivo DVR and Mini, each Tivo device needs a wired connection (either ethernet or moca). Wireless is not recommended and is very "at your own risk".

    You didn't mention which Roamio model you're interested in, but the Plus and Pro models have built-in moca. So all they would need is a coax connection, and it'll talk to the Verizon router for all its connectivity.

    The Mini also has built-in moca, so all they'd need is a coax cable too.

    **If you go with the base-model Roamio (no built-in moca), you can either run ethernet to it or get a moca adapter ($50 from tivo.com) to connect behind it and it'll then use the moca network too.

    (The Plus and Pro Roamio models also have built-in streaming and downloading to your iPad. In-home AND out-of-home. Verizon doesn't currently do this with their DVRs. They have an app with limited streaming of many live TV channels, but you must be on your home network and they don't stream your recordings... just live TV.)

    As far as Tivo equipment is concerned, if you choose not to use verizon's router as your main router (it's actually pretty decent all things considered), there are a couple options you can choose from to make it a secondary router to use just for its moca capability for the Tivos. But I'm not an expert in that type of setup. I'm happy just using the actiontec router.
  3. jrwelshon

    jrwelshon New Member

    Feb 9, 2014
    Thanks for the quick reply BigJim,

    If only coax has to be run to each location that will make things a lot easier, and I guess I can then keep my current Verizon FIOS Internet setup as is. I really appreciate the information, thanks.

  4. HenryFarpolo

    HenryFarpolo Member

    Dec 1, 2008
    Andover Ma
  5. jrwelshon

    jrwelshon New Member

    Feb 9, 2014
    I guess I'm still a little confused about the proposed infrastructure setup if I decide to go with FIOS TV.

    Right now the ONT on the outside of my garage has an Ethernet cable coming into the garage and directly connects to a small white junction box that has a RJ45 port on the other side of the junction box.
    Currently I'm running an Ethernet cable from that port up to my office and into my Netgear wireless router for FIOS Internet, which has been working great since the install years ago.

    If I decide to switch to FIOS TV, will they have to run a coax cable from the ONT to the inside of my garage? (no coax cable from ONT now).

    If they do have to run coax, where does this then connect? I'm trying to picture the setup.
    Does the cable come from the ONT and then into a splitter (let's say a 4 port splitter)? Then one port of the splitter to the Verizon Actiontec router. Then each of the other coax ports to each TIVO box throughout the house.

    My plan is to purchase 1 Roamio Plus for the family room (which just so happens to share a wall with the garage), 1 mini for master bedroom upstairs, and 1 mini for basement area.

    Also, if a Verizon Actiontec router is used, I'm wondering if I would have to somehow redo how the Ethernet is currently run to my Netgear wireless router upstairs. Are the two routers then bridged, or are the coax and Ethernet two complete separate networks? (which I would not mind at all).

    Any help in clearing up my confusion is greatly appreciated.

  6. Aero 1

    Aero 1 Member

    Aug 8, 2007
    For Fios Tv service, you will need a coax run from the ONT into something, depending on what you want to do. If you dont need to use the Actiontec as a MOCA bridge and you dont plan on using any Fios boxes for TV or VOD, then the coax run goes from the ONT to the splitter in order to feed telvision to the Tivos.

    If you plan on using the Actiontec as a MOCA bridge and/or need to use a fios tv box, then the coax from the ont goes into the splitter with one end going into the Actiontec.

    Use the actiontec as a Moca bridge, it will be easier to connect all the tivos.
  7. BigJimOutlaw

    BigJimOutlaw Well-Known Member

    Mar 21, 2004
    Coax will run from the ONT to wherever the primary TV point of entry is located.

    If you use the Actiontec (recommended) you can put it wherever it's convenient for you. If there's no current coax run to that location, you can have it added.

    How the actiontec works with your existing network is up to you. I just use the actiontec as my one and only router (located in bedroom) and it works fine for the whole home.

    But if you really want to use your router, you could make your router a bridge/AP to the Actiontec and run ethernet between them. I believe there is also a way to make the Actiontec a bridge/AP to your router. I'm not certain of the setup specifics (detailed instructions can be found on DSLReports) but they can be done.
  8. Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

    Oct 30, 2003
    DSLReports has an explanation of all of the 9 different setups you can run. If you're running TiVos only, without Verizon boxes, there is no need for the FIOS router, they can just be totally separate with your existing router setup and coax going to the TiVo Roamio and Minis. You will still need a way for your network connection to connect to your TiVo.
  9. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

    Feb 2, 2006
    The ONT has an RJ45 ethernet jack for a direct network connection, but you need to have the Verizon tech activate it. I've got a pfSense router setup with a 24-port unmanaged gigabit switch for a whole house wired network. I have the Actiontek router hanging off one of the ports on the switch, but it's only used for wireless connections for a couple of laptops. I got rid of my last Verizon box a couple of months ago so I can probably get rid of the Actiontek altogether. I can set up the pfSense box with wireless if I need it.

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