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Will "pausing" TIVO for long periods harm it?

Discussion in 'TiVo Premiere DVRs' started by xberk, Apr 20, 2012.

  1. xberk

    xberk Member

    Dec 3, 2011
    My wife tends to put her Premiere unit into "pause" for long periods, like a half hour. She does this nearly every day. Does anyone know or have an opinion on the the long term effect, if any?
  2. ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay

    Apr 6, 2000
    SF Bay Area
    It mostly affects the TV itself, with the burning in images on the screen. Sometimes when I pause it, I try to have it on a black image.
  3. rainwater

    rainwater Active Member

    Sep 21, 2004
    Only a plasma would have burn in effect but its doubtful newer ones would cause permanent burn in.
  4. unitron

    unitron Active Member

    Apr 28, 2006
    semi-coastal NC
    The TiVo will, for the most part, be doing exactly what it would be doing otherwise, so it won't wear it out any more or less quickly than any other use of it.

    You might want to see what the manufacturer of your television or other video display mechanism has to say about the danger of screen burn or burn-in over what period of time.
  5. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    Jan 31, 2002
    I sometimes have a TiVo paused for days or a week or more. It will not do it any harm. Of course my TV isn't on during this time. Sometimes I won't get back to watching from that TiVo for a while.
  6. Chris Gerhard

    Chris Gerhard Well-Known Member

    Apr 27, 2002
    I have been pausing TiVos for long periods since 2000 and have never observed any issues and although my understanding of technical issues isn't great, I can think of no reasons we would see any additional wear and tear by doing this. I say don't be even the least bit concerned.
  7. pmiranda

    pmiranda Member

    Feb 12, 2003
    Austin, TX
    My series 1 that I never use has been paused for about 3 years and it's fine :)
  8. Worf

    Worf Active Member

    Sep 15, 2000
    The TiVo Guy inside that TiVo is probably wondering if its owner is dead :p
  9. awsnyde

    awsnyde Member

    May 11, 2007
    A slightly more technical explanation: With VCRs, pausing for long periods would eventually cause problems because the tape heads were spinning in direct contact with the tape. At the very least, it would cause flaking off the tape, and possibly clog the tape heads on the VCR.
    The TiVo is using a hard drive, and with a hard drive, the "heads" are not touching the platters, they're hovering just slightly over them. The platters would be spinning regardless of whether the TiVo is paused or not, so it doesn't really matter where the heads are (note that they'll actually be constantly moving anyway, particularly since the TiVo will continue to record the program live, as well as whatever's on the other tuners--depending on how the firmware and software is written, the paused image may well be held in a buffer anyway, meaning that the disk heads wouldn't even need to move back to where the image is stored).
    Image burn-in could be an issue as others have noted, and I've even seen it with LCDs although those burn-ins don't tend to be permanent.
  10. mrsean

    mrsean Member

    May 15, 2006
    New Jersey

    It's ok to leave Tivo paused indefinitely, but if you know that you're going to be away from the tv for more than 15 mins, turn it off no matter what the tv technology is. Why invite a costly headache?
  11. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    Jan 31, 2002
    I'd rather leave my TV on than turn it off then back on again 30 minutes later. Although that does use power, but my main TV is an LED DLP so it only draws around 100 watts. Plus I can't get burn-in from my DLP sets or LCD sets by leaving a static image on them. Once I turn my components on I leave them on unless I leave the house or don't plan on coming back in that room for a few hours. I try to avoid turning devices on/off multiple times within a short period.
  12. scandia101

    scandia101 Just the facts ma'am

    Oct 20, 2007
    MN, greater...
    Back in the day, if I paused my S1 for more than a day, chances were pretty good that would lock up and I'd have to unplug it / plug it in to correct the issue.
  13. Series3Sub

    Series3Sub Well-Known Member

    Mar 14, 2010
    It does not harm the TiVo at all. As for the TV, all modern display, including Plasma, have greatly reduced the chance of damage due to "burn in." For burn in to occur, one really needs to have a static image for GREAT periods of time over a significant period of use. The image that gets burnt in the most are the dreaded "bugs" (static channel logo or clock/temperature on a small corner of the screen, for example because people are viewing such as channel for HOURS at a time almost EVERT day.

    However, in your case with the wife, one would presume that she pauses it on a variety of shows she is watching, so the image is never the same each time she pauses (unless it is the same channel with the same bright, solid channel bug; most channel bugs today are opaque in design and are less likely to burn in). In addition, the buffer, if live, is only 30 minutes, and then the TiVo goes OUT of pause and into play (like other DVR's), so this is NOT a long enough period to cause burn in on modern displays. It is NOT worth upsetting the wife over this as the way you have described her pausing habits, there is almost no chance of burn in occurring. However frequent pausing and hours upon hours over months of a shopping channel present a real risk as can something like the hours long morning shows that have the clock/temp bug that almost NEVER leaves the screen, but are problems for OLDER displays, especially older Plasma or Rear Projection but not displays of recent years. Otherwise I would NOT worry about it. I myself just don't like to pause for that much time because I am paranoid.

    Finally, if you should encounter a burn in problem, the Disney WOW DVD/Blu-ray calibration disc has a feature designed to remove burn in on most displays. Disney makes NO guarantee, but at about $20 for the disc, it represents an affordable fix for most situations.
  14. xberk

    xberk Member

    Dec 3, 2011
    Thanks everyone. My wife will be pleased she has done no harm. No burn in problems yet on her LCD. Seems like an excellent feature to just pause TIVO, turn off the TV and let it ride for days and then pick up where you left off -- no harm done. Pretty cool.
  15. CybrFyre

    CybrFyre Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    Does the Premiere not auto unpause like the HD does (which is really annoying, btw)?
  16. steve614

    steve614 what ru lookin at?

    May 1, 2006
    Dallas, TX
    You should be able to pause a recorded show indefinitely.
    Live TV can only be paused for 30 minutes, or when the pause point reaches the beginning of the buffer (whichever comes first).
  17. Jonathan_S

    Jonathan_S Well-Known Member

    Oct 23, 2001
    To be ultra nitpicky there is a scenario where live TV can remain paused for far longer than 30 minutes.
    If you're behind in a live buffer AND the tivo uses the tuner associated with the buffer to record a 'real' recording them the buffer you're watching gets "orphaned" and nothing gets added to it or removed from it. So you can leave it paused at least as long as the scheduled recording is using that tuner and never have the pause point hit the beginning of the buffer.

    (It's been too long since I've done this so I can't remember what happens when the schedule recording ends; whether you can stay in the orphaned buffer or if it gets forcibly dumped and you jump to the new livetv buffer.)

    Do note that an orphaned buffer is a fragile thing. If you leave it (for example by going into a menu) you can't get back.

    Ok enough of my nitpicking :D
  18. L David Matheny

    L David Matheny Active Member

    Jan 29, 2011
    SE Ohio
    I think the orphaned buffer stays around as long as you're using it. And I think if you pause playback before leaving it, you can return later using the Live TV button, but I haven't tried anything like that lately. (I probably should have tested before posting, but someone will correct me if I'm wrong.)
  19. Jonathan_S

    Jonathan_S Well-Known Member

    Oct 23, 2001
    I don't think that's right; but it's been too long so I don't really trust my memory on that.
    But I thought hitting live TV would take you to the buffer of the show being recorded; not back to the orphaned one.

    Hmm, would pressing 'left' to go back let you back into the 'orphaned' buffer? That might]/i] have been it.

    I just tried to avoid that situation, or if I got stuck in it was careful to finish watching before leaving the buffer...
  20. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance TCF Club

    Dec 1, 2000
    Silicon Valley
    I do that all the time. I'll be watching a show late at night and get too tired to finish it. I pause it and come back to the next day. Never seemed to be a problem. I'm pretty sure Hard Drives use an air cushion between the head and the platter so it's no more wear on the HDD paused than if it was recording a suggestion.

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