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Long Time S2/S3 User - Premier Worth Checking Out?

Discussion in 'TiVo Premiere DVRs' started by markp99, May 16, 2012.

  1. markp99

    markp99 TakoKichi TCF Club

    Mar 21, 2002
    Nashua, NH
    I've seen/heard a little buzz lately surrounding the TiVo Premiere. As a long time Series 2 & 3 user, is it time to start to check out the latest and greatest?

    I do still feel a bit BURNED as an early fan and adopter of the Series 3 ($$) when they first came out, only to have the device quickly fall off the development path. No functional S3 complaints whatsoever, but the Comcast/Netflix/Hulu stuff has gained my attention.

    I have a few questions for the S3 converts out there:

    1. I love the native GUI elements of the S3, but have NEVER been fond of the newer interface elements, like TiVo Search and other web-enabled apps (feel half baked, chunky, sluggish, etc.). Does the Premiere UI retain the native GUI elements, or improve upon the web app UI elements? Is there anywhere to go to see a demo of the Premiere interface in action? I poked around just a bit and could not find much more than screenshots. Any links??

    2. What would be the net change for my current S3 setup, w/2 cable cards from Comcast? I presume I would simply swap these cards out for 1 (or 2?) replacements, correct? Is monthly fee for Premiere cable card(s) comparable to S3 cards?

    3. Are the Premiere devices able to take advantage of the TiVo multi-device subscription discount? I have Lifetime on one S2 and a discounted monthly on my S3. I guess I would debate replacing the S3 with a Premiere, vs keeping BOTH units - any points to consider relative to TiVo subscriptions?

    4. I think I have read of some shortcomings/complaints/incomplete aspects of the Premiere device. It has been a while since I have read anything about the newest generation device. Have the nagging issues been addressed?

    Thank for any advice you can provide!
  2. markp99

    markp99 TakoKichi TCF Club

    Mar 21, 2002
    Nashua, NH
    Chatted w/TiVo support, got a few answers:

    No links available from TiVo, but the CSR encouraged me to try the 30 day offer. This is a good idea, but I wonder the complication of swapping out my 2 x S3 cable cards for 1 multi-stream cards, then back again if I choose to send back. Not greatest luck with Comcast over the years.

    CSR could not offer any assistance here, as expected. Guess I'll need to call Comcast. Ugh... :(

    CSR confirmed I would get multi-device discount even if I dumped the S3. So trading $6.95 for $11.95 - a consideration.

    Any other inputs appreciated, especially related to:

  3. lillevig

    lillevig Cold in East Iowa

    Dec 6, 2010
    Marion, Iowa
    Given that you don't care about the fancy searches, etc. the biggest gain would be if you got two Premieres. Then you could do Multi Room Viewing. For me, this isn't an attraction - I'm happy with normal program transferring. The other gain of going with a single Premiere would be only needing a single CableCard. One possibility is that you could get a Premiere and lifetime under the MSD, then call back later to cancel the sub on the S3. They would likely offer you a $99 lifetime on that box. Then sell the S2 to recoup some of the cost.
  4. severe

    severe New Member

    Dec 11, 2009
    I updated my Series 3 about a month ago, after much deliberation. The Premiere's shortcomings and complaints, as you mention, warded me off for some time.

    I finally made the upgrade after a move and a few weeks with a Verizon box. I'd gotten quite bored with the TiVo UI. Coming across a boxed Premiere on Craigslist for $50, and having heard about the newest update with improvements back in January was enough for me.

    Despite some major issues at first (see some of my recent posts) I'm very happy with the new UI and its functionality, for the most part. I suggest the upgrade.
  5. Teeps

    Teeps Active Member

    Aug 16, 2001
    You do not mention which Premier you are considering. I'm considering an xl4 premier, 4 tuners. With that I really only need one TiVo. But if TiVo would work with me to continue the current total sub fee, I would keep the S3 on line for OTA duty.
  6. monkeydust

    monkeydust New Member

    Dec 12, 2004
    Hey there! I'm a S1, S2, S3, Elite owner. So, I've been a loyal Tivo customer from the start. I've been using the S3 for the last few years (the one with the LED readout) and didn't upgrade to the Premiere because the interface looked pretty lousy to me and I didn't like what I had heard about the performance. About a month ago, I bought an Elite to compliment my S3 that I continue to run. I'm now considering getting another Premiere/Elite to replace my S3. I prefer the HD interface of the Elite over my S3 but I'm still not a fan of the Discovery bar and the HD menu performance still isn't perfect in some areas of the GUI (the regular channel guide is plenty fast though). I do wish the Elite and the readouts on the actual hardware like my S3 (clock and what shows are currently being recorded). But, there are enough things in the Elite that I like over what my S3 lacks that makes me consider replacing my S3. Oh, and the more tightly integrated ipad app is nice too. So, yes, I think it is certainly worth the upgrade at this point. The main thing keeping me from replacing my S3 at the moment is that the Premiere has been out for a couple of years and I'm wondering if there is new hardware around the corner.
  7. tombonneau

    tombonneau New Member

    Mar 26, 2009
    I upgraded a few months ago from an HD after the latest firmware sounded like it fixed some problems. I gotta say I don't notice much of a lag any more than on the Tivo HD menus.

    I'm a big fan of the UI and especially the iPad app. I'm not a power TV watcher, I'm just OTA but I like bells & whistles and the new HD UI just looks much sharper and slicker on a big HDTV.

    Something else to consider with the latest release of Netflix & YouTube UI improvements, Tivo dev is clearly going to be leaving older versions in the dust so any improvements will be made to the Premiere.

    I think given the low cost for the hardware it's a no brainer upgrade for you at this point. You likely won't regret it. I had the same initial concerns but I think the newest firmware upgrades really made some improvements.
  8. sharkster

    sharkster Well-Known Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    I just want to add this - Good that you are coming here for advice and information. You cannot trust, too much, what the CSRs at Tivo tell you in the course of trying to make a sale. BTDT and got screwed in a couple of ways, and I am somebody who asks EVERY question I know to ask and verifies everything I'm told so I'm not that easily jerked around.

    I'm just offering this as a helpful FYI :)
  9. markp99

    markp99 TakoKichi TCF Club

    Mar 21, 2002
    Nashua, NH
  10. jrtroo

    jrtroo Chill- its just TV

    Feb 4, 2008
    It looks like you may be in the area that formerly had the Comcast Tivo available. If that is the case, from a new feature perspective, you may be in the second roll out area (Boston was mentioned, but New England is the current interpretation here on that) for the availability for Comcast On Demand.

    Cablecards are not the issue they were, so if you really want to test out the P with a 30 day trial, I would pick up a new card (no truck roll) and set it up fresh. If you keep the P, then turn in the old cards from the S-3 and look to get the 99 lifetime offer on the S-3 and sell it.
  11. markp99

    markp99 TakoKichi TCF Club

    Mar 21, 2002
    Nashua, NH
    Yes, I was one of the earlier beta testers on the Comcast TiVo! Had a free Comcast unit for quite a while, but never really cared for it (sluggish UI).

    Getting On-Demand would permit me to dump the Comcast Cable Box, which I still have and use occasionally when TiVo recordings conflict, provding a 3rd tuner - XL4 removes that concern :).
  12. markp99

    markp99 TakoKichi TCF Club

    Mar 21, 2002
    Nashua, NH
    XL4 Installed, configured and updated. I had all 4 tuners cranking last night with my usual collection of Thurs night programming, plus MLB. One of these programs had been bumped with my S3. /happy

    After the 20.2 update my initial concerns about the sluggish UI have mostly diminished.

    I still find it jarring when I encounter the random SD UI pages. WOW, they look terrible in comparison to the HDUI. I read here that TiVo is knocking off these old UI screens over time... Good news.
  13. dell2008

    dell2008 New Member

    Dec 3, 2006
    I just got the box and I love it!
  14. markp99

    markp99 TakoKichi TCF Club

    Mar 21, 2002
    Nashua, NH
    You and me both dell2008. :)

    Just wait until you get the 20.2 update (force a couple restarts, should arrive shortly for you too). I'm still waiting for the update.
  15. SpikeDad

    SpikeDad New Member

    Apr 26, 2003
    IMHO, No. I'm looking hard at repairing my Tivo 3 HD so I can return to S3 software. The new HDUI is atrocious adding nothing to the experience except delay and confusion.

    None of the "alternative" media source UI (Netflix, Hulu, etc) are worth a damn. My Apple TV 2 Netflix interface is light years ahead of the Tivo version.

    My Premiere has locked up and rebooted spontaneously more times in the past couple of months than my S3 did in the 4 years I had it. And I'm royally pissed that the Premiere 1080p output is ONLY compatible with 24fps TV input which my 3 year old Samsung doesn't support.

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