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Tivo Stream vs. Slingbox 350 out of home video quality

Discussion in 'TiVo Stream' started by noone3000, Nov 11, 2013.

  1. ausmatt

    ausmatt New Member

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    Dec 13, 2013
    So, I just tested both and can say hands-down the Slingbox (350) is light-years ahead of the Stream. In fact, the Stream is not even usuable outside the home.

    Here's my setup and results:
    Home internet: 30 Mbps down / 5 Mbps up
    Test site speeds: 5 Mbps down, 7 Mbps down, and 30 Mbps down
    Tivo Premier + Stream
    Tivo Premier + Slingbox 350

    With the Stream, I could not even watch when viewing outside the home due to poor viewing quality, regardless of the testing site. All I could ever get was 2 bars on their video quality which was quite unwatchable. Viewing live TV was cumbersome due to the need to "record" everything. Moreover, half of all the shows I wanted to watch were not available due to transfer restrictions.

    With the Slingbox, I can receive HD quality at all of the testing sites. It really is great quality. Interface is great owing to the fact they natively integrate the Tivo remote in a couple of different ways ... including seeing on your screen the full Tivo remote so you can navigate virtually anywhere. Did not need the IR blaster since it controls it over the network (which is great). I should add the Slingbox ipad app had some pauses and issues, so I need to try it a few more times and see if that is true always.

    All in all, I returned my Stream ($90 from Fry's) and kept the Slingbox 350 ($148 from Fry's). IMHO, Tivo has a LONG way to go to reach the quality and ease of use of the Slingbox, not withstanding the copywrite protection issues of many shows.
     
  2. jimmypowder

    jimmypowder New Member

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    Oct 24, 2013
    Can barely do wifi either in my experience

    I bought a Tivo Roamio Plus recently to get the stream feature but I was so disappointed with it , many of times not connecting at all to my home network , I bought a slingbox 350 and am very happy with it . LTE streaming is a lot better then I thought it would be .

    I have a wired 100/20 Mbps connection at home for both the Tivo and Slingbox
     
  3. noone3000

    noone3000 New Member

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    Jul 19, 2012
    Yeah, the Stream is terrible. Even when using in-home. As mentioned previously, viewing live TV was cumbersome due to the need to "record" everything. The picture frequently freezes in the middle of watching a program. Then you have to exit out of the app, force kill it, restart it, and go back and find the program. Ridiculous. Especially when I am on a 30mbps wifi pipe. Even worse, even when using in-home, the app frequently has problems connecting to the stream and then you have to set everything up through it again to make it work.

    I gave up and returned my Stream just today after auditioning it for over a month (holiday return period). It wasn't even worth the clearance price of $70 for me.

    The Slingbox 350, although cumbersome with its controls, is just a much, much better solution all around, even if it does tie up your TV.
     
  4. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Apr 17, 2000
    Nevada
    I don't have that much trouble with the Stream in home. Although it does occasionally lock up and then I have to wait for 2 minutes while it reboots. Have not had a chance to use OOH yet, but I'm hoping that by the time I do need it (in April when I go to NAB) they'll have all the bugs worked out.

    I had a Slingbox for a while, but it eventually dies due to capacitor rot, my biggest complaint about it was that even in home the controls were basically unusable. There was so much lag between what you see on screen and what's actually happening on the TiVo getting past commercials was a serious chore. Video quality was great though, and even when you were on a really crappy hotel wifi it worked. (not great quality, but OK considering)
     
  5. bradleys

    bradleys It'll be fine....

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    Oct 31, 2007
    Both in house and OOH it works GREAT! With the exception of this locking issue...

    Last evening I watched one show and it worked fine front to end, second show, it stopped and wouldn't restart for a few minutes. Sometimes you have to run setup again...

    Same thing OOH, but if it pushes you back to setup, you are stuck. You cannot reestablish the connection until you are back on your home network. It almost seems like the stream itself is resetting.

    If they get this instability figured out, this is going to be a fantastic tool.
     
  6. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Apr 17, 2000
    Nevada
    That's exactly what's happening. The standalone Stream did the same thing on occasion. Although it's seemed to have gotten worse since the update after iOS7.
     
  7. jimmypowder

    jimmypowder New Member

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    Oct 24, 2013
    I have one thing to suggest to Tivo . Hire a Slingbox or Monsoon multimedia engineer to get the Tivo Stream to work properly .

    Right now it's laughably bad . If I had a thousand dollars to spend on streaming devices id buy Slingboxes not Tivo Streams

    Trust my judgement !
     
  8. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Jan 23, 2006
    Mission...
    I have 1 of each and each has their advantages, so I use both. I like to use the Stream in DOWNLOAD mode for out of home viewing and that works pretty well for me - good quality and instant controls. Just have to let the download buffer for a while before watching. Watching that way is better than Slingbox with very laggy remote control response. Problem is watching is limited to my iPad only vs with Slingbox there are many clients available, including web browser for my laptop. Still, for iPad viewing I actually prefer the Stream solution to Slingbox (for DOWNLOAD mode, not STREAM mode).
     
  9. DFWDave

    DFWDave New Member

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    May 17, 2004

    I will answer from my perspective also, as someone who has both the Stream and the Slingbox 500.

    I had the Stream well before the implementation of OOH streaming and download, but it served the purpose at the time of streamlining (pun intended) the download of already recorded shows to my iPad, primarily to watch while on airplanes.

    I purchased the Slingbox prior to OOH streaming/download on the Stream. I had gotten by to watch shows I missed while on the road by using things like HBO Go or the network's web site. Once I started traveling overseas, though, I found that I had zero chance of catching the shows live and I was getting blocked from the web sites to watch because of my location. Slingbox was a perfect solution to not only access live TV from home, recorded shows almost instantly, but also Netflix and Hulu that would otherwise be blocked on my PC or iPAD in the country I was in at the time. Stream/Roamio alone would not solve the Netflix/Hulu aspect of this equation.

    I did go overseas (India) for the first time last week, since OOH was enabled for my Stream, and loved the ability to stream or download a show.

    The difference for me on watching a recorded show using Stream OOH or Slingbox is whether or not I need to download it to watch it offline (Stream), and whether or not it has (or how many) commercials given the controls and lag issues on the Slingbox. The Slingbox is definitely more forgiving of network issues, something I'm more likely to have to deal with in a hotel.

    Also, at times I've hooked up my MacBook to the hotel TV via HDMI and watched via Slingbox. I don't have an equivalent option for my iPad, and even though I know connections exist, reviews for those are horrendous on iOS 7.
     
  10. JSY

    JSY Member

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    Nov 5, 2002
    I noticed the 350 only has component inputs. Is that how you all have it hooked up to your TiVo?

    I used too own the original Slingbox Pro years ago - actually still do somewhere - but I abandoned it a while back. I thought about the 350, but didn't like that it doesn't have HDMI input. The 500 seems a bit pricey.
     
  11. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Mission...
    HDMI input is useless anyway since it would only work for channels without HDCP which are almost none of them. Hence 350 is sufficient.
     
  12. JSY

    JSY Member

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    Nov 5, 2002
    Oh, is that true? Ahh, thanks for the tip.

    Edit: I noticed you answered this twice now in this thread - don't know how I missed it above! I do have another question. I remember this same issue with my original Slingbox.. and I'm wondering if it's the same with the new Slingbox.

    When I would have it connected via component.. and try to access it from OOH - I would get a HDCP error anyway because I think the HDMI switchbox that my TiVo output to would be off and somehow that made it think I was trying to access it without HDCP. I take it that that is not an issue..

    I remember I paid like $30 for the Android app so maybe I can salvage some use out of it. :)
     
  13. jimmypowder

    jimmypowder New Member

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    Oct 24, 2013
    I would not in any way shape or form buy a Tivo for it's streaming capabilities which are quite weak compared to a Slingbox . While the tivo boxes are good for recording and have a nice interface they have a lot to learn about streaming over the internet .
     
  14. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Jan 23, 2006
    Mission...
    Depending on what you connect to yes it can still be an issue. My TV doesn't keep HDMI handshake alive in standby mode so has the problem. I resolved the issue by getting an active HDMI splitter to which my TiVo HDMI output connects to and then splitter connects to TV. Hence as far as TiVo is concerned it's always connected to active HDMI connection and hence problem is avoided and component output which goes to Slingbox is always clear of that annoying HDCP message.
     
  15. JSY

    JSY Member

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    Nov 5, 2002
    Thanks for this... After reading your note and then looking up the 350 vs 500 - it seems that the 500 would not be very useful for me as even they recommend keeping both HDMI and component hooked up to compensate for HDCP. That and I noticed that the 350 is on sale for $128 made me take the plunge for it and to go the route you suggested above with an active splitter. That sounds like it would solve my problems too and be exactly what I'm looking for. :)

    And Best Buy is having a thing until Dec 28th with a $15 gift card for spending over $100 - so it makes it even cheaper. :)
     

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