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Series3 FAQ - Review - Photos

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by megazone, Sep 12, 2006.

  1. Alcatraz

    Alcatraz Occasionally Helpful

    Nov 22, 2000
    Considering that this product was first announced a couple of years ago, they would've branched this product out long before Kidzone and the recently deleted folder were born, or at the very least "matured".

    Let see......branch the software and work on it separately for this platform for a couple of years in order to release it, oh but while you're at it merge all the new functionality into the software along the way and make sure you don't delay the product release even further. Not bloody likely! :D

    I'm guessing they went with a working platform and will worry about merging back with an update sooner rather than later. Didn't the series2 dual tuner do the exact same thing just a few months ago and get updated shortly thereafter? They don't have to wait for approval from Cable Labs for this to work so I'm betting you should expect it to show up pretty soon.
  2. Fofer

    Fofer XenForo Rocks!

    Oct 29, 2000
    Yeah, me too. I certainly don't begrudge TiVo for the decision. But it does give me, personally, a reason to pause on the purchase.
  3. rtjones

    rtjones New Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    Thanks, keenanSR. I'll check it out.
  4. MichaelK

    MichaelK New Member

    Jan 10, 2002

    give it a couple months and they'll all be caught up. And maybe the price will come down some....
  5. RichB

    RichB Oppo Beta Group

    Apr 2, 2003

    The see this page links in the FAQ all give 404 errors.

    - Rich
  6. dturturro

    dturturro Member

    Feb 1, 2002
    Long Island
    Can the S3 record 2 OTA channels at the same time like the HR10-250?
  7. bicker

    bicker bUU

    Nov 9, 2003
  8. windracer

    windracer joined the 10k club

    Jan 3, 2003
    St. Pete, FL
    I might be smeeking here, but MZ, you might want to update the FAQ to reflect the fact that you no longer need to buy the S3 direct from tivo.com in order to qualify for the VIP Lifetime transfer.

    And the current software version is 8.0.1b.
  9. rickyjames

    rickyjames New Member

    Jan 6, 2006
    Newbie poster here, please bear with me...

    I'm a diehard TiVo fan with two S2 units (one with DVD burner), analog only current subscription to Comcast (99 channels) and a older analog-only cable ready 35 inch SDTV. I'm making the upgrade to HDTV for Christmas. I'm currently planning on a TiVo S3 (transferring a lifetime membership) and a Samsung LN-S4696D HDTV unit (46 inch LCD with integrated digital tuner which makes it Digital Cable Ready (DCR) having a CableCard slot).

    I've read several places that an analog-only subscription such as mine usually has in-the-clear digital channels above Channel 99 and after checking the Comcast website for my area and the channels listed on my plan this seems to case for me. Obviously I've never seen any of these digital channels with either the S2 TiVos or my current SDTV.

    I've also read the following facts that make me want to avoid having to upgrade from my current analog Comcast subscription to a digital one if at all possible:

    1. DCR HDTVs like the Samsung I'm planning to get will pick up in the clear digital channels without a Cablecard via direct connection to the coaxial cable, and that the resulting picture quality is SIGNIFICANTLY better than if the digital decoding is left to a cheap Comcast issued set top box (STB) which then feeds decoded video signals to the HDTV instead.

    2. A TiVoS3 without any CableCards inserted will manually tune to, correctly decode, and allow manual time/channel recording of unencrypted in-the-clear digital channels. However, operation in this mode will result in no stored channel data, Season Passes, Wish Lists, etc.


    1. Assuming my digital cable channels are indeed unencrypted, does this all mean that I can keep my Comcast analog subscription, not request any Cable Cards from Comcast or even call them to tell them I'm hooking up any of this gear, hook up the S3 and the DCR HDTV to my coax cable, hook up an OTA antenna, run the S3 channel search to load Channel List for the OTA and analog channels, set up Season Passes etc for the OTA HDTV and analog cable channels, then view the cable digital channels (including the HDTV ones) by punching in the correct channel number above 99 on the S3 controller while watching "Live TV" thru the S3, and manually set up channel/time recording on the S3 for the digital cable channels, including the cable HDTV channels? Any gotchas here anybody cares to point out as long as I'm willing to live without Season Passes and Channel List for the digital cable channels?

    2. If all of this is true, what's inserting a CableCard into the S3 got to do with enabling Season Passes? The function of the CableCard as I understand it is to allow decryption to authorized users. If the digital signal is already in-the-clear, there's nothing for the CableCard to do, right? How come my initial "call to the TiVo mothership" with an S3 doesn't result in the download of a digital channel list for my zip code like it does for the S1 and S2 and their analog channel list? How come my weekly calls to Tivo for analog channel schedule info for my cable provider doesn't include similar schedule info for the digital channels right above them in the list?

    3. It appears that there is an S3 menu toggle to define whether the S3 outputs 720p or 1080i as its HD signal, with the SD signal being 480p in either case. Am I correct in assuming that the S3 stores HD data in the same format as which it is originally broadcast, or does this menu toggle cause conversion to the selected format for a dissimilar HD broadcast before storage onto the hard drive? If the former, does this imply that you should always be aware of the original format the HD program you're about to watch via S3 playback and manually toggle this menu switch before viewing to get the s3 output to match the original input format for optimal video? Or does the S3 switch automatically between 720p and 1080i output to match the original input signal type?

    Gonna be a great Christmas Day...
  10. CrispyCritter

    CrispyCritter Purple Ribbon Wearer

    Feb 28, 2001

    Your plan depends completely on what Comcast is sending down the line in your particular location; something that can change at any moment on Comcast's whim. At the moment, I'm doing exactly what you're planning (analog + OTA). The S3 TiVo can detect 450+ "channels", but the only ones that I get both audio and video for are the 70 music channels. I get video for a dozen other channels, but no audio. The rest are presumably encrypted. People in other locations get more channels in the clear.

    To answer your point 2, the mapping of internal digital channel to external station id is again entirely at Comcast's whim, and they don't publish it (and do change it). Thus there's no way for TiVo to reliably give a schedule. Search for QAM in this forum for more details.
  11. c3

    c3 TiVoholic

    Sep 8, 2000
    1: Yes, you can record digital cable channels manually without CableCards.

    2. CableCard maps physically channels to logical channels used by the program guide database. Without that mapping, TiVo does not give you the guide data. In my area, two CableCards cost me just $1.50/month. Personally, I wouldn't use TiVo without guide data.

    3. Digital streams are recorded as is. Display format is converted at playback time.
  12. pkscout

    pkscout Active Member

    Jan 10, 2003
    Honolulu, HI
    hmmm, looks like TiVo reorged their site. None of the links to anything on the TiVo site work anymore.
  13. AZrob

    AZrob Member

    Mar 31, 2002
    Phoenix, AZ
    Hiker, where/how did you buy the Warrentech warranties? I tried calling Warrantech themselves and they said to buy from a retailer...but wouldn't tell me which ones they are partnered with.

    I did see a quote for an RMV5750 warranty at electronicoutfitters.com but they didn't seem to know anything about it, even though they are selling it (!). The price, BTW, was $51.18, which seems pretty good.

    Also, these warranties are all described as "DOP" warranties --- can you tell me what that means?

    Thanks in advance,

    Rob from AZ
  14. hiker

    hiker S.o.N.Y.D.a.C.

    Nov 29, 2001
    SF Bay Area...
    PM sent.
  15. Dec 2, 2006 #355 of 460

    STTF New Member

    Dec 2, 2006
    Just wanted to say thanks, this helped me.
  16. Dec 7, 2006 #356 of 460

    geodon005 Member

    Mar 10, 2004
    Hiker. . . I am also interested in those warranties. . .could you PM me as well?
  17. Dec 7, 2006 #357 of 460

    megazone Hardcore TiVo Geek

    Mar 3, 2002
    Yeah, annoying.

    I'm back, miss me? I'll try to get the FAQ updated soon to fix that and some other stuff.
  18. Dec 7, 2006 #358 of 460

    megazone Hardcore TiVo Geek

    Mar 3, 2002
    Exactly, it is just standard development. I've seen this many times, even for companies I've worked for. You have to branch the code to produce a new product and add the feature particular to that product. In the meantime the existing products get updates. Normally you ship your stable code, then work on merging the codebases again to equalize the features. That's where TiVo is now.

    One caveat - I don't know where the 'November' thing came from, but TiVo specifically told me NOT to say November, that it would be 'later this year'. Obviously, since we're in December, it didn't come out in November. :)
  19. Dec 7, 2006 #359 of 460

    megazone Hardcore TiVo Geek

    Mar 3, 2002
    Yep. I've been kind of tied up for a bit, didn't login here for two months. I'm trying to catch up now.
  20. JPShinn

    JPShinn New Member

    Aug 24, 2004
    SF Bay Area
    On the Tivo website, the KidZone setup manual is included with the Series 3 manuals. Has it actually been activated?


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