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Setting up Tivo Mini without Coax/Ethernet Wall Access

Discussion in 'TiVo Mini' started by mychals, Jun 25, 2014.

  1. mychals

    mychals New Member

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    Nov 15, 2003
    The room I need to use the mini in does not have either a coax cable nor an ethernet wall jack. Are there other options in setting up the Mini using a wireless ethernet adapter or some other option that you have found successful?

    Much Thanks,

    Mike
     
  2. tarheelblue32

    tarheelblue32 Active Member

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    Jan 12, 2014
    Raleigh, NC
    Some people have reported on the forums of having success getting the Mini to work with either powerline ethernet adapters or wireless ethernet bridges. Neither option is officially recommended by TiVo, as the quality of internet over wireless or powerline is very dependent on your specific circumstances, but you can give them a try and see if one of those solutions works for you. If your home's electrical wiring is good, then powerline could work, and if the distance and number of walls the wireless signal has to travel through is small, then wireless could work. It's very much a YMMV situation.
     
  3. mcluvin

    mcluvin New Member

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    Apr 29, 2014
    I have a Mini connected solely to a Linksys WUMC710 bridged wirelessly to a Netgear Nighthawk router. In the last month of use, it has only had 1 hiccup. I've had more hiccups with my Mini on Moca, but I do use that one more. If you go wireless you will probably have more problems, but it can be quite useable.....
     
  4. dianebrat

    dianebrat I refuse to accept your reality TCF Club

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    boston'ish
    I use Powerline for both rooms on my 2nd floor, the office and the bedroom with the Mini and it works far better than wireless would, I'm a big :up: for PNA
     
  5. mychals

    mychals New Member

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    Nov 15, 2003
    Do you need to have the tivo roamio plugged into a powerline adapter or only the mini and the other adapter plugged into your wireless router?
     
  6. dianebrat

    dianebrat I refuse to accept your reality TCF Club

    10,129
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    Jul 6, 2002
    boston'ish
    The Roamio is fine the way it is, you need a PNA at the router (or off a switch somewhere in the network if you prefer) to feed the PNA network in your A/C lines, then a PNA up by the Mini.

    The bedroom PNA actually feeds a small 5 port switch and the Mini, TV, BD player are all plugged into that switch that's fed by the PNA.

    In fact my Roamio is connected via MoCA to the house network and it is used as a bridge in the media rack to feed the switch in the rack for the other devices there.
     
  7. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

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    Jan 31, 2002
    Northern...
    The problem with Powerline adapters is that they can't be connected to a UPS. So if the power goes out you lose network connectivity while you ares till watching a Tv connected to a UPS along with the Mini connected to the UPS.
     
  8. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    And a lot of other things. They are heavily dependent on the wiring in the building and how it's set up, so their performance is totally unpredictable and all over the place. I have a pair right in the middle of my network, and the network seems to be erratic depending on what I am transferring. If I'm going Mac to Windows, they get a couple of mbps, which is terrible, but if I use a Windows VM to go Windows to Windows with the VM doing the Mac to Windows part through the virtual gig connection on my Macbook Pro, they get like 25mbps. If I just use the internet on my HTPC, it gets around 40mbps. I have no explanation for this behavior, and when connected via fast ethernet, any configuration will settle out right at the 91mbps max usable that the ethernet offers.

    I should get a MoCA adapter or a Wireless AC router and bridge, but I'm in the place I'm in for less than a year, and then moving, so I'll just leave them there. I have not tried a TiVo Mini over Powerline, although I easily could, as one is upstairs with the router, and the XL4 is downstairs on the other end of the powerline bridge.

    I'm not a fan of these things at all. At this point, I'd pony up the dough and use Wireless AC for an application where you don't own the building you are living in. If you own it, get a drill, and start running wire! That's what I plan on doing when I own a house. CAT-6 and RG-6 to every room.
     
  9. dianebrat

    dianebrat I refuse to accept your reality TCF Club

    10,129
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    Jul 6, 2002
    boston'ish
    *shrug*
    It's my 2nd house using them, and I have 3 other friends and family using them in a variety of houses, all have performed well and certainly better than wireless, I'll support them in any thread I can, but I'd love to know what the core issue is with those folks that have nothing but problems.
     
  10. nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

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    Cox Cable...
    I thought the new SOP here was to just say "I don't have that problem", when somebody posts that they are having a problem... :p

    If you have ever done any electrical work that involves the breaker box, and knowing that every home has 240V coming in, with a 120V phase on each side of the backplane, and one breaker and what it feeds can be on one phase, while another breaker to the next room involved can be on the other phase, you'd understand the "core issue". The adapters tend not to work if on circuits of opposite phases. Most of the rest breaks down to shoddy wiring practices, bad grounds, other noise in the circuit, and so on.

    What's left of the issues tend to be homes with a "whole home surge protector" installed at the main panel, and high-end surge strips (or UPSs) that also filter out noise (which powerline adapter signals would be considered). It's my understanding that the new "smart meters" the electric company just installed here use the home wiring as the antenna to send electrical usage back to the electric company. That didn't go over well with people who are afraid of RF signals, at all. It could also cause problems with such devices.

    Lots of things can create noise on the electrical circuits (especially switchmode/switching power supplies like most computers and modern electrical devices use). I'm amazed those adapters ever work.

    IIRC, there are also "pest repelling" devices that claim by plugging them in, your whole home's wiring puts out signals that repel bugs and rodents. Throw in that any signal being "broadcast" in a home with unshielded wiring could (theoretically) be received by another home's wiring, or by jumping between the service lines, and it makes for some hit or miss luck.
     
  11. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    Yeah, and that's just to scratch the surface. Certain appliances cause them to wig out too. And it's not really different phases, it's different legs of the same phase, as house wiring is single phase, but that's besides the point...
     
  12. nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

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    Cox Cable...
    Yeah, I realized that even as I was typing it up, that the 240V is single-phase, split by the neutral, causing a split-phase (each side being a "leg"). I didn't think how to write it in a simple manner (at the time), without writing a "for dummies" book, or quoting one. The "certain appliances" you bring up were under "other noise in the circuit", likewise, trying to keep it short.

    I was replying to somebody who usually just turns their nose up at anything I say, dismisses it, or ignores it. Their interest, and post, may be purely for if they ever have a problem with their own powerline adapters in the future. I was hoping my reply might help somebody else who may read it, and/or use it to help others, down the road.
     
  13. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    Yeah, I figured out what you were referring to! I thought they were phases for a long time, until someone corrected me on that, and now that I understand the single-phase system, the wires on the poles make a heck of a lot more sense!
     
  14. lessd

    lessd Active Member

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    You left out X10 lighting controls, all problems using home 120/240VAC wiring for xmitting anything with good reliably, turn on a good vac and see what interference one would get. Some people do have luck with these adapters, but most don't.
     
  15. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    I tried streaming through the Powerline adapters last night, and it worked briefly. I didn't try turning appliances on to see if I could break it or anything. It was slightly less responsive while FF'ing compared to MoCA, but it's a barely noticeable difference, and it doesn't impair the use of the setup in any way.

    However, YMMV.
     
  16. nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

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    Cox Cable...
    I think it's Your Mileage Is Guaranteed To Vary (YMMIGTV) with those things. I'm not sure what your test was, other than a brief itch of curiosity, knowing you had some around to try...

    Maybe you should use them for a week, at all hours of day and night, and make sure to throw in variables you control, as well as watching for ones that just "happen" at strange times, or when a military aircraft flies overhead... I have a lot of anomalies with wireless and wired RF things that I blame on that last one, since I live near an air-force base and they fly pretty low through here sometimes.

    If I had a set around, I'd volunteer to try some experiments, as well as getting out my Fluke combo-scope with realtime graphing, recording, and glitch capturing software (using scope to optical to serial-link for PC) to try and get a sense of how they really work, and what tends to induce the most problems for them.

    It seems like the thread has become a listing of what devices/anomalies can/might interfere with them. So, it seems only logical to "look behind the curtain", and see if anything simple can be done to insure they work, and work reliably.
     
  17. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    Pure curiosity. Like I said, I didn't try to break the setup. We had almost no electrical load above our baseload running at the time.

    I don't really want to experiment on my roommates for an extended period of time, since they mostly use that TV, I just did it out of curiosity. I have no guarantee that it would work reliably, although under certain conditions, it can work. I also have the top-rated Netgear AV500 adapters.
     
  18. aia832003

    aia832003 New Member

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    May 30, 2014
    I'm in a similar situation and have yet to find a viable solution for the Mini to not stutter or tell me I have a bad connection. This is frustrating due to having a 20+Mbps connection throughout with a power line adapter. Anyone have any suggestions? Did I just receive a bad Mini?
     
  19. tarheelblue32

    tarheelblue32 Active Member

    3,647
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    Jan 12, 2014
    Raleigh, NC
    I doubt it's the Mini. Your powerline connection probably just isn't good enough for the Mini. Have you tried wireless? If that doesn't work either then the only other option is running a coax or ethernet cable to that location.
     
  20. aia832003

    aia832003 New Member

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    May 30, 2014
    I've tried wireless as well with worse results. The Ethernet option is essentially what I have now with the power line adapters. I have a 50mbps connection and getting a consistent 35mbps with the power line adapter.
     

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