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Old 06-26-2014, 12:25 PM   #1
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True network connection speeds

Trying to get the specifications of the negotiated speeds of the Roamio (basic) and mini. I've seen that the mini has only a 10/100 (i.e. fast Ethernet) connection. I've not seen anything on the Roamio.

I have CAT6 and CAT5E cabling and connections, and I have networking tools to actually test data rates to certify the lines. I presently don't have enough Gigabit ports to connect everything on gigabit, but am considering a 24-port gigabit switch. Every room is hard wired with several drops where needed. My main stereo cabinet is the only exception, where I have a single drop and use a switch to connect my Denon receiver, my TiVo Roamio, my Dish Network receiver (soon to go away), and my PS3. More ports (i.e. 24-port switch upgrade), and I'll run a few more drops behind the cabinet.

BASICALLY...does the Roamio Ethernet jack support gigabit?

If the answer is no, then my gigabit is basically just better at sharing bandwidth, but not worth doing further upgrades.
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Old 06-26-2014, 01:18 PM   #2
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I just put secondary switches in each room. No need for home runs.

Anyway, the base Roamio (4 tuners, OTA) has a 10/100 port. The Plus and Pro models (6 tuners, cable only) can do Gigabit.
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Old 06-26-2014, 05:12 PM   #3
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BASICALLY...does the Roamio Ethernet jack support gigabit?

If the answer is no, then my gigabit is basically just better at sharing bandwidth, but not worth doing further upgrades.
Yes the Roamio (plus/pro only) supports Gigabit ethernet, but can the Roamio send or receive anywhere close to gigabit line rate? Nope. I think some have noted it'll do about 200Mb/s so yes faster than a 100Mb/s interface but well below Gig. In reality the only time you might see anything in excess of 100Mb/s is when transferring a recording from one TiVo to another TiVo. The bandwidth required to support the Mini is quite low, I'm going to go out on a limb here and say its somewhere between 1 and 2 Mb/s (I haven't measured it as I don't have a Mini).

So unless you really need the Gig interface speeds for something else I'd say save your money and simply continue to use the switch(es) you have. Of course if you need more ports I don't think you have too many options today regarding the interface speeds on new switch hardware.

Final note, CAT5e is all that is needed for Gig ethernet, CAT6 will work just as well although it costs slightly more $$, there is NO performance gain for CAT6 (or higher) over CAT5e, just make sure you have all 4 pairs wired.

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Old 06-27-2014, 11:41 AM   #4
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The theoretical bandwidth requirement for a Mini running live tuner is 12 or 13 Mbps.

If someone wants to experiment, I would like to hear what happens when it's limited to a 10Mbps line.
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Old 06-27-2014, 02:21 PM   #5
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The theoretical bandwidth requirement for a Mini running live tuner is 12 or 13 Mbps.

If someone wants to experiment, I would like to hear what happens when it's limited to a 10Mbps line.

No need to experiment. You would have issues depending on the content bitrate. I've played back videos from my Roamio Pro on my Minis that have 25Mb/s bitrates. A 10 Mb/s connection wouldn't cut it. It might from some of the low bitrate HD channels. Especially the H.264 channels. I think some of the FiOS H.264 HD channels use a 7.5Mb/s bitrate.
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Old 06-27-2014, 02:46 PM   #6
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Sure, I know it can't work.

But does it warn you what's wrong?
Or refuse to play?
Or tries and quits when it falls behind?
Or stutters and skips?

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Old 06-27-2014, 09:22 PM   #7
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Great responses. Thanks for all your experienced input.

Regarding cabling, actually the CAT6 cabling seems to better support higher certification tests (speed and frequency) consistently based on separation of the twisted pairs. I've proven this myself with my network test equipment. Cat5e will support Gigabit without issues, but it has more susceptibility to noise and cross-talk (noise between pairs) given different twist rates of the pairs. Downside to Cat6 cabling is rigidity. The plastic spacer really takes away from natural flexibility of the other materials.

THERE IS A BIG BUT/EXCEPTION. Can the hardware perform to utilize the supported cable speeds? Like our conversation in this thread, Cat5e cable should be plenty sufficient. Whereas, switch to switch connections or my main use computer, I install Cat6. My main use computer does a bunch of transfers to my Windows 2012 Server. Everyone else just streams.

In my experience, I can maintain higher sustained transfer rates with Cat6 vice Cat5e. I still install mostly Cat5e, but important home run cables, I install Cat6.
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Old 06-27-2014, 09:23 PM   #8
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Final note, CAT5e is all that is needed for Gig ethernet, CAT6 will work just as well although it costs slightly more $$, there is NO performance gain for CAT6 (or higher) over CAT5e, just make sure you have all 4 pairs wired.
When I moved into this house in 1996, I pulled CAT3 through it. I mean, who could need more than 10Mb? These days, I'm running gigabit over it at full speed. But the runs are short, 20-30 feet, and there is little interference. Not recommended, not spec, but it can work. -- Doug
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Old 06-28-2014, 09:05 AM   #9
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When I moved into this house in 1996, I pulled CAT3 through it. I mean, who could need more than 10Mb? These days, I'm running gigabit over it at full speed. But the runs are short, 20-30 feet, and there is little interference. Not recommended, not spec, but it can work. -- Doug
Then that cable was only labeled Cat3. A true Cat 3 cable, which is one built to Cat3 specs, will not run gigabit, even over a few feet. Just like a true Cat5 cable, built to Cat5 specs, can't even run gigabit. Once the gigabit specs were proposed, Cat5 cable was still branded Cat5 but was built to Cat5e specs. At work we used to have thousands of true Cat5 patch cables that could not run faster than 100Mb/s. They had to be all changed out to Cat5e or Cat6.
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Old 06-28-2014, 11:37 AM   #10
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Then that cable was only labeled Cat3. A true Cat 3 cable, which is one built to Cat3 specs, will not run gigabit, even over a few feet.
I disagree. TIA/EIS 568-A (http://www.csd.uoc.gr/~hy435/materia...IA-568-B.2.pdf), which defines the categories for UTP cable, is a performance specification for transmission properties of 100 meters of cable. Cat5e needs to be tested up to 100Mhz and Cat3 to 10Mhz. It is much easier to hit those transmission properties with 30 feet of cable.

Looking the Cat3 in the house here, it has about half the number of twists per inch as some of the newer Cat5e I have.

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At work we used to have thousands of true Cat5 patch cables that could not run faster than 100Mb/s. They had to be all changed out to Cat5e or Cat6.
Lots and lots of older patch cables were 4 wire cables. You're right, they will not run gigabit. -- Doug
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Old 06-29-2014, 05:09 PM   #11
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I disagree. TIA/EIS 568-A (http://www.csd.uoc.gr/~hy435/materia...IA-568-B.2.pdf), which defines the categories for UTP cable, is a performance specification for transmission properties of 100 meters of cable. Cat5e needs to be tested up to 100Mhz and Cat3 to 10Mhz. It is much easier to hit those transmission properties with 30 feet of cable.

Looking the Cat3 in the house here, it has about half the number of twists per inch as some of the newer Cat5e I have.



Lots and lots of older patch cables were 4 wire cables. You're right, they will not run gigabit. -- Doug
The thousands of cables we had at work were four pair cables, not two pair. This was back in the mid 90's. We tested many of them with a certification tester. They would not even pass cat5 tests. Only the Cat3 test which still tested all four pairs. But they were true Cat3 cables. I haven't seen a new, true Cat3 cable in many many years. The last cables I ran into that were labeled cat 3 were actually just Cat5e cables labeled Cat3. At work when we have clients that need something that only Cat3 is needed we put in Cat5e. That is the minimum type of cable we even purchase now.

To this day we still run into some of these old, true Cat3, cables at work with our federal client. Typically when someone is trying to run gigabit and they put in a trouble call because it won't link to 1000BT. Then we change it out with a Cat6 cable. But some of the floors still use true Cat5 cable runs, which won't do gigabit either. So then a new Cat6 drop is installed. Which of course is still overkill since cat5e is all that is needed for gigabit. But almost every client we have wants Cat6 installed at a minimum. Even when they are still only running 100BT networks.
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Old 07-01-2014, 01:03 PM   #12
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The thousands of cables we had at work were four pair cables, not two pair. This was back in the mid 90's. We tested many of them with a certification tester. They would not even pass cat5 tests. Only the Cat3 test which still tested all four pairs. But they were true Cat3 cables. I haven't seen a new, true Cat3 cable in many many years. The last cables I ran into that were labeled cat 3 were actually just Cat5e cables labeled Cat3. At work when we have clients that need something that only Cat3 is needed we put in Cat5e. That is the minimum type of cable we even purchase now.

To this day we still run into some of these old, true Cat3, cables at work with our federal client. Typically when someone is trying to run gigabit and they put in a trouble call because it won't link to 1000BT. Then we change it out with a Cat6 cable. But some of the floors still use true Cat5 cable runs, which won't do gigabit either. So then a new Cat6 drop is installed. Which of course is still overkill since cat5e is all that is needed for gigabit. But almost every client we have wants Cat6 installed at a minimum. Even when they are still only running 100BT networks.
But the upgraded material costs now are really cheap compared to the labor costs that would come later to replace the cable when they would need to upgrade again.
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Old 07-01-2014, 04:54 PM   #13
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One issue of the Gb ethernet enter face of the Roamio Plus/Pro is that it's actually a built in switched enterface with multiple ethernet enterface behind it. The Plus/Pro has Moca, Stream and the normal Tivo physical ethernet ports which are all connected externally to what you could consider is a 4 port switch with the 4th port being the external output to your network with the other three connected to the Moca, Stream and Tivo. Due to how that single 1gb interface is physically shared, it will never achieve maximum theoretical throughput that a single dedicated switched port will achieve.

Given that there is documented at least 200mb throughput with MRV transfers, the primary Tivo ethernet is Gb and the dedicated external stream box is Gb ethernet, two of the three internal interfaces are Gb ethernet. I suspect however the Moca interface is limited to 100mb since it wouldn't make sense to support anything faster but I'm not familiar with the chipset Tivo is using to achieve the ethernet to Moca gateway. Like the song says, two out three ain't bad...
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Old 07-02-2014, 06:36 PM   #14
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The big difference between fast Ethernet (100 Mbps) and gigabit Ethernet is the connection. Fast Ethernet used single TX/RX pairs and GigE uses two. A Cat 3 cable really needed only 4 wires connected although almost every cable I've ever seen had all 8 connected. So, almost any Ethernet cable will get you a link on GigE, but it is crap shoot whether the data transfer will be reliable. Using Cat5e or Cat6 just guarantees that the cable will perform at least up to the specified maximums in all normal environments.

Personally, I've never seen any home network device communicate at more than 200 to 300 Mbps. I doubt the extremely low cost Ethernet chips that are used these days are capable of more.

My router lets me monitor throughput on the wired, wireless and WAN ports and I have never seen Roamio to Mini traffic get over 15 Mbps. There may be cases where it goes higher, but I haven't seen it.

As to what happens when the bit rate exceeds the capacity of the LAN, I accidentally found out when the Ethernet adapter in one of our Linux boxes went bad and started jabbering. It was pumping out about 80 Mbps of junk, and at the time, it and a Mini were connected to the last remaining 100Mbps switch in the LAN. The Mini simply reported it had lost communication with the Roamio. I could immediately re-establish the link with the Roamio, only to loose it again later. After a few of these disconnects I realized it was dropping every time the video included a lot of action, and therefore the bit rate spiked (in fact, this what lead me to discover the jabbering interface).
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Old 07-03-2014, 12:37 AM   #15
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The big difference between fast Ethernet (100 Mbps) and gigabit Ethernet is the connection. Fast Ethernet used single TX/RX pairs and GigE uses two. A Cat 3 cable really needed only 4 wires connected although almost every cable I've ever seen had all 8 connected. So, almost any Ethernet cable will get you a link on GigE, but it is crap shoot whether the data transfer will be reliable. Using Cat5e or Cat6 just guarantees that the cable will perform at least up to the specified maximums in all normal environments.

Personally, I've never seen any home network device communicate at more than 200 to 300 Mbps. I doubt the extremely low cost Ethernet chips that are used these days are capable of more.

My router lets me monitor throughput on the wired, wireless and WAN ports and I have never seen Roamio to Mini traffic get over 15 Mbps. There may be cases where it goes higher, but I haven't seen it.

As to what happens when the bit rate exceeds the capacity of the LAN, I accidentally found out when the Ethernet adapter in one of our Linux boxes went bad and started jabbering. It was pumping out about 80 Mbps of junk, and at the time, it and a Mini were connected to the last remaining 100Mbps switch in the LAN. The Mini simply reported it had lost communication with the Roamio. I could immediately re-establish the link with the Roamio, only to loose it again later. After a few of these disconnects I realized it was dropping every time the video included a lot of action, and therefore the bit rate spiked (in fact, this what lead me to discover the jabbering interface).
EVEn back in late 2001, when I first setup a GigE network at home, I was getting 500Mb/s+ throughput speeds.(although back then I used a PC as a DHCP server/firewall and my other PCs connected directly to it. But once the consumer unmanaged GigE switches were introduced, I switched to using those) For many years now I've been easily getting well over 900Mb/s speeds over my GigE network, PC to PC. The inexpensive, unmanaged GigE switches are more than capable. At least the Netgear, Linksys, and Dlink switches I have used are. I'm currently using around fifteen Dlink, GigE switches. I could get much faster speeds if I wasn't limited to only GigE speeds since the SSDs in all of my PCs can easily hit 4Gb/s(500MB/s) read/write speeds. Although I am only using Cat5e runs, so I'm pretty much stuck at GigE speeds.
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Old 07-05-2014, 09:18 AM   #16
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Sure, PC to PC can get up to those speeds, but you won't see TiVo or any similar device communicating at that rate...they just don't try to push speeds that high, even if the hardware is capable.
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Old 07-24-2014, 07:34 PM   #17
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I just noticed my new Roamio Basic is only lit 100 instead of Gig

Bit of false advertising on TiVo's part if the base model truly is 10/100 only, as the specs page on their site shows a green dot saying 10/100/100 for all 3 models.
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Old 07-24-2014, 07:52 PM   #18
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Okay this really pisses me off

Before I made my last post I was actually in the middle of transferring a show from my Roamio Plus unit to my Roamio basic. I noticed the 100 meg light and came on here for answers. Started seeing all these posts about the base model only being 10/100, but as I've just shown on TiVo's own page it shows 10/100/1000 for all 3 models. That's straight up false advertising.

Now mind you transferring an hour long show from the Plus to the Base only took 8 minutes 7 secs with a throughput of 90.20 megs looking at the Network diagnostics for incoming DVR transfer, but 4 minutes would have been better since you folks are saying even with a true gig on both boxes I'd only get 200 or so throughput. Once again quite pissed that their web site shows all 3 units being 10/100/1000.
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Old 07-24-2014, 07:57 PM   #19
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Bit of false advertising on TiVo's part if the base model truly is 10/100 only, as the specs page on their site shows a green dot saying 10/100/100 for all 3 models.
They made the same "mistake" when they first launched the Roamio line, and even did so in what they fed the bloggers with before launch.

Fool me once... Fool me twice... Does TiVo think it ends differently if it's the third time they publish bad specs?

It's not something that those new to TiVo, whom have never heard of TCF, are likely to catch...

I'd recommend punishing TiVo for it. But, those who have been here long enough know better than to post such blasphemy! TiVo can do no wrong...

They sent me this in an email, after I took a Roamio offline for two weeks, suggesting maybe I need to upgrade to a Roamio (which is all I have):

http://messaging.tivo.com/Portal/con...=8239&b=264689
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Old 07-24-2014, 08:09 PM   #20
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They made the same "mistake" when they first launched the Roamio line, and even did so in what they fed the bloggers with before launch.

Fool me once... Fool me twice... Does TiVo think it ends differently if it's the third time they publish bad specs?

It's not something that those new to TiVo, whom have never heard of TCF, are likely to catch...

I'd recommend punishing TiVo for it. But, those who have been here long enough know better than to post such blasphemy! TiVo can do no wrong...

They sent me this in an email, after I took a Roamio offline for two weeks, suggesting maybe I need to upgrade to a Roamio (which is all I have):

http://messaging.tivo.com/Portal/con...=8239&b=264689
Well I essentially paid the exact same amount for the Basic with Lifetime right before the new sale hit that the new deal for the Plus with Lifetime costs. If I can go to their site and order a 2nd Plus right now at $599 then I'm going to do so and return the Roamio Base model. I'm still in the 30 day return window.
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Old 07-24-2014, 08:23 PM   #21
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Done deal

They're going to take back the Roamio Base model for their false advertising intransigence on the 10/100/1000 issue. I was able to still get the current $599 deal on a 2nd Plus with Lifetime, which I guess I really needed to do anyway, since I paid $642.88 less than two weeks ago for a Roamio Basic with Lifetime and the $599 deal for the Plus with Lifetime is $646.18.
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Old 07-24-2014, 09:38 PM   #22
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You do realize the Plus only does cable, not OTA, right?
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Old 07-24-2014, 09:47 PM   #23
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You do realize the Plus only does cable, not OTA, right?
Yes I do, look how long I've been a member. Not exactly a TiVo newb, even if I was away for awhile.

I only bought the OTA Base model as one of the two units, just in case I might want to become a cord-cutter in the future and could sell the Plus with Lifetime. Plus the idea of 12 tuners seemed insane. I've pushed 8 before, but 12? The OTA thing having been said though, I've realized that frankly I'll probably always have to have at least basic cable for the wife. She loves her Investigation Discovery and the murder/forensic type shows. Should I be worried? LOL

In all seriousness, we just celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary this past Monday and she's an amazing woman. That being said, as much of that crap as she's watched over the years, she could most likely kill me and not leave a single trace.
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Old 07-25-2014, 09:15 PM   #24
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I've realized that frankly I'll probably always have to have at least basic cable for the wife. She loves her Investigation Discovery and the murder/forensic type shows. Should I be worried? LOL
One of Adam Carolla's basic rules for a happy marriage is "two Tivos".
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