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What is the difference between Tivo and Windows Media Center?

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by dtivouser, Dec 28, 2013.

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  1. dtivouser

    dtivouser Tivoless TCF Club

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    Black screen on SDV channels is what I thought might be a codec issue. Harpervision says this might be a known issue (not codec). I thought I ran the Shark installer carefully not to get the overt spamware but nonetheless it installed a bunch of crap on my machine.
     
  2. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    I tried fixing it, and there was no logical solution. My computer is very simple, not a lot of hardware or software involved. I can only imagine a more complex system with MCE.


    An HTPC doesn't replace a Blu-ray player, and those go into deep sleep anyways.

    The ripping Blu-ray use case is nonsense. It takes a lot of time to rip the movies, on the off chance that you ever watch one of them. That's what a shelf is for.

    Total false equivalency. Yes, any piece of electronics can have problems, and a few people will have them. However, TiVos are generally plug and play, MCE is generally a mess that even people very knowledgable with computers can have trouble with. And then there's the actual user experience. Terrible on MCE, but very good on TiVo.

    TiVo is the only competent cable DVR system offered for most MSOs. If it weren't for TiVo and CableCard, I'd definitely have DirecTV.
     
  3. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

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    Ellicott...
    Congratulations, Bigg. You're the first person ever to be added to my Ignore list. :up: Actually, I had you there once before but I decided to give you the benefit of the doubt and saw that you started responding rationally to a few posts. Sad to say that didn't last long. See ya! :p

    Ahhhh. So much better now. :D
     
  4. CrispyCritter

    CrispyCritter Purple Ribbon Wearer

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    Then why did you feel free to bash TiVo if you had no evidence to back up your insinuation?

    I don't understand why you feel you can react strongly when somebody bashes WMC without sufficient evidence in your opinion, but you can bash TiVo without evidence.
     
  5. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

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    Ellicott...
    It wasn't my intention to bash Tivo, but rather point out what I thought was a benefit in favor of HTPCs (actually, it was Ceton in this instance). I admitted I was wrong so why don't we just move on with it? Based on the number of complaints being posted regularly with regard to Tivo's customer service I'm pleasantly surprised to hear they're doing something right. I don't have a vendetta against Tivo like some people have against HTPCs. I think it's a great DVR.

    BTW, I've deleted the statement you found so offensive from the previous post so as not to provide anything misleading. I don't have a problem being corrected if I post something that's inaccurate as I'd like to keep the facts straight.
     
  6. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    Yeah, he clearly belongs the TGB, not here. Apparently those people have the technical skills and patience to spend inordinate amount of times debugging the mess that is MCE.

    What a piece of work. False equivalencies are a classic misleading tactic, but so obvious.
     
  7. Feb 1, 2014 #167 of 312
    Worf

    Worf Active Member

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    Wow, 3 reinstalls?

    I only did one install and not a problem... then again, I knew I had to buy a separate SSD (120GB Samsung) and HDD (3TB Seagate), how to put the video on the hard drive, and installed PowerDVD (boxed copy).

    Installed the drivers for my Collossus and it was all good to go. Even managed to transfer not only my recordings from my old HTPC, but also the upcoming list of recordings and stuff. Then just run through the list to get rid of the many duplicates and I have all my season passes and ratings and schedule set in.
     
  8. Feb 1, 2014 #168 of 312
    mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

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    Ellicott...
    I've done dozens of reinstalls so three isn't all that many. Eventually I discovered I had a couple of bad motherboards that were driving me nuts. If you have to keep reinstalling Windows to try and get things working I'd start suspecting a serious hardware problem. Download a copy of Memtest and check your memory sticks for any problems. If there's a motherboard issue I'm not sure what to do about that. There may be some diagnostic software you can try but I wouldn't know what to recommend. My systems simply stopped working and wouldn't boot after a while.

    If your hardware is working and you're using the latest drivers you shouldn't run into any problems installing Windows and setting up WMC. If you are having issues then there's something going on that's probably unrelated to WMC.
     
  9. Feb 1, 2014 #169 of 312
    slowbiscuit

    slowbiscuit FUBAR

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    LOL, I built a new PC a year ago and installed 7MC once, then added an HD Homerun Prime tuner and got the Cablecard paired with Comcast in no time. Spent about a half a day to get everything working most of which was building the PC itself and waiting for Win7 SP1 to load a zillion updates.

    There was no debugging, it just worked out of the box. My only conclusion from reading these horror stories is that some people can do this, some can't. That's all there is to it. But none of it is rocket science if you pick good hardware and take some time to actually do things in the right order.
     
  10. Feb 1, 2014 #170 of 312
    heyted

    heyted New Member

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    Building a HTPC with open source software is definently not a good idea for many people. I am just saying that it is possible, it can be a good choice for some people, and it can save money.

    New TiVo Roamio:
    Four-tuner model = $700 or possibly much more if paying monthly
    Compatible with TiVo Stream

    New open source HTPC:
    With two tuners = $318* or less + time to put it together** http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb/showthread.php?p=9890288#post9890288
    CableCARD tuner with four or more tuners = aprox. $150
    Total with four or more tuners = aprox. $353 or slightly more with a new hard drive
    Stream cable tv channels*** to an Android phone/tablet = $1.99 https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.silicondust.mg.upnp&hl=en

    *All functional parts are new except the hard drive
    **For those that want to consider that an expense
    ***Including premium channels such as HBO that are copy protected
     
  11. Feb 1, 2014 #171 of 312
    heyted

    heyted New Member

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    I do not count the time it takes to set it up as an expense since I consider it a fun hobby. It is more than 20 hours. It is a never ending process of improving the HTPC. If I were to compare it to my salary, it would be a wee bit more than $10 per hour as a licensed engineer;).

    Comcast in Palm Beach County, FL does not flag channels as copy protected except for premium channels and the MoviePlex channel.
     
  12. Feb 1, 2014 #172 of 312
    mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

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    Ellicott...
    Exactly. You can't put a price on doing something you enjoy. If you don't enjoy it and don't want to put in the time, then don't do it. This is something you do out of choice, not necessity. If you have to complain because your hobby isn't working for you then you need to find a different hobby. Like slowbiscuit said, some people can do this and some people can't.
     
  13. Feb 2, 2014 #173 of 312
    Worf

    Worf Active Member

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    Depends I suppose. Its a hobby until the wife gets used to it and it fails. Then it's a race to get it working again.

    So at the beginning it's a hobby. But after a month once it's setup, it's a necessity.

    I probably spent 20 hours in the research of computer components, dealing with the shops, building it, fixing it and getting software installed. But I had a semi-working HTPC in the meantime (it was the half-brokenness that got me working on it). I would've preferred to buy it rather than build it, but no one makes HTPCs that meet the requirements (silent, fast, WAF friendly, and looks like a piece of equipment that belongs in the living room, not an ugly PC). I had to change power supplies because my desired one (a fanless one) requires a certain orientation.

    Assembly was fun, until you remove the heatsink for the 10th time because you need it to get access to the drive bays. Even a 4U case is quite small because of the limited depth of most living room shelving which limits how deep and where cabling goes.

    If it wasn't for the specific needs, I might have just purchased a Mac Mini and be done with it - small, silent, and looks like a reasonable piece of equipment. The NUC looks good, but it's got a noisy fan.
     
  14. Feb 2, 2014 #174 of 312
    mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

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    Ellicott...
    How true. It's a hobby while you're tinkering with it to work out the kinks and then it just becomes part of your everyday experience. Having a HTPC fail once you put it into service is no different than having a Tivo fail, except you tend to catch flak from the family when it happens because it's all your fault for making them use it.

    Both of mine are almost dead silent. I can't hear them unless I put my ear right up to them. When the TV's on they just get swallowed up by the noise floor and disappear.

    FWIW, the noise levels for fans of the type used in the NUC vary from unit to unit. My old Dell Zino HD used an almost identical fan, the only difference being the length of the wire harness. I had one fail so I picked up another one on ebay. The replacement was noisier than the original, but not so loud that I couldn't live with it. I spotted a listing on ebay a while back for working fans pulled from NUCs. The seller listed them for about $5 apiece so I picked up a couple to have on hand as spares. The cheapest replacement fan I could find for the Zino HD was about $20.
     
  15. Feb 2, 2014 #175 of 312
    Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    Mine didn't work reliably at all, on a brand new, clean, reliable PC. MCE was the one thing that was a mess.

    Your numbers are all off. You're comparing the stripped down Roamio, so start with the one people actually want, which is $1100 including service. At the time i was comparing, TiVo was $900 (XL4 plus service).

    For the HTPC, you can make a zillion different configurations, but if it's a decent machine, the PC will be about $700, the Ceton Card is now $300 (6 tuners), it used to be $200 (4 tuners), and Windows is $100.

    Basically, either way, a fully equipped system is about $1100. The Ceton Echo is $175 vs. $250 for the TiVo Mini. The biggest argument for MCE being cheaper is that you'll probably want an HTPC anyways, so you may as well have it all in one box, as opposed to an $800 box and an $1100 box sitting next to each other (I have an HTPC and an XL4 sitting next to each other). This is a valid point on cost, but given how horrible MCE is at being a DVR, it's a moot point. TiVo is so much of a better DVR, that it's worth giving up the HTPC is you're on a tight budget. Otherwise, just get an HTPC and a TiVo.
     
  16. Feb 4, 2014 #176 of 312
    rcanoza

    rcanoza New Member

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    MS seems to have put Media Center (which I loved) out to pasture, so I guess that's one rather big advantage Tivo has
     
  17. Feb 4, 2014 #177 of 312
    HarperVision

    HarperVision TiVo's Italian Cuz!

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    Paradise...
    They're still supporting it though.
     
  18. Feb 4, 2014 #178 of 312
    rcanoza

    rcanoza New Member

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    Well I bought the Linksys Media Extender (DVD player version) and MS broke compatibility with it in Windows 8.
     
  19. Feb 4, 2014 #179 of 312
    mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

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    Ellicott...
    None of the legacy extenders work with Windows 8 except the XBox 360. I believe Ceton may have gotten the Echo to work, but I'm not 100% sure. I know they were working on a fix but don't know if they ever got it to work. The safe bet for using extenders is to stick with Windows 7.

    FYI, just because Microsoft stopped any further developments of Media Center doesn't mean it will stop working. You should be able to use WMC for as long as you can get guide data for it.

    Edit: I just checked the Ceton website and they have a disclaimer that the Echo, as well as any other non-Microsoft extender, does not work with Windows 8.
     
  20. Feb 4, 2014 #180 of 312
    slowbiscuit

    slowbiscuit FUBAR

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    Yep and they pretty well abandoned the Echo too, no new firmware releases in almost a year and there are still plenty of issues with it. The rumor is that they basically gave up on extender development after they ran into issues with the chipset they picked. They were going to release an Android implementation on it too but couldn't get the update to flash reliably so they gave up on that as well.

    Very sad indictment of a company that stood by the InfiniTV products but not the Echo less than a year after it was released, Ceton has left a bad taste in the mouth of many Echo buyers.
     
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