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Old 10-12-2012, 04:28 AM   #1
Gravis856
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Opinions on Cable, TiVo and Usenet

As a TiVo novice, I hope to get some insight here from people who use both Usenet and cable, or who have crossed over to one side or another.

I ditched cable about 3 years ago in favor of Usenet, due to its low cost and high availability. Side note: I wish the movie/tv industry would get onboard with the Spotify model. Its so much easier to search for $10/month than download and organize music illegally.

My only experience with TiVo has been the built in fork that Comcast implemented. While it was half-assed, it was still better than their built in DVR option. I'm very happy with my $10 usenet setup with CouchPotato Server and Sickbeard but I still do miss cable. Renting a slingbox for a month made me realize this. Main things I miss are,

1) Channel surfing - Catch a random show, or some white noise vs what's on your set 'download' list or collection
2) Commercials - Double edged sword, but I have to search movie trailers, new TV show pilots, new products, etc. Sometimes feel out of the loop.
3) Flexibility/Stability - No need to plan ahead for a certain big game or show vs streaming or DLing a movie/tv show ahead of time

I've been toying with the idea of getting a tuner card for my HTPC or buying a TiVo Premier 4 but Comcast's ~$80-90 plus TiVo service cost is making me wonder if its worth it.

Thoughts?
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Old 10-12-2012, 08:31 AM   #2
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It's up to you if it's worth it. For anyone with cable and a Tivo (myself included), it is worth it.
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Old 10-12-2012, 10:46 AM   #3
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If you live in an area that you can receive OTA signal, you can get your broadcast networks that way with a TiVo. You'd get all the network shows and most all big games, including the commercials :P
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Old 10-12-2012, 05:08 PM   #4
ThAbtO
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I get sufficient TV with just antenna, ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, CW, PBS, and its free, total about 40 channels. I add on Netflix for shows and movies. Just for TV alone, I pay just $25 total monthly.

If you get the Premiere 4 or 4XL model, its only for digital cable and it would cost you more then 80 for the cable bill alone, it would not do antenna.

Tivo Premiere or XL will do antenna or cable (analog or digital), or both at the same time.
The 'XL' is to note the bigger drive space in the models.

I use usenet but its time consuming and you may not get all, if any, of the shows you wanted. I would also need to do extra steps such as decoding, joining, unzipping, but after all that, I can then send it to the Tivo. I have downloaded .mp4 and .mkv, and they work pretty well playing on Tivo.
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Old 10-12-2012, 05:17 PM   #5
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If you use Tivo with an antenna only then the monthly fee is only $9.99.
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Old 10-12-2012, 06:15 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by tiams View Post
If you use Tivo with an antenna only then the monthly fee is only $9.99.
I don't believe that offer is available anymore.
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Old 10-12-2012, 09:37 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gravis856 View Post
I've been toying with the idea of getting a tuner card for my HTPC or buying a TiVo Premier 4 but Comcast's ~$80-90 plus TiVo service cost is making me wonder if its worth it.
You can pay lifetime (of the box) for service.. It's still a lot, but amortizes out to be cheap if you use it for a long time.
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Old 10-12-2012, 10:52 PM   #8
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You can pay lifetime (of the box) for service.. It's still a lot, but amortizes out to be cheap if you use it for a long time.
Yeah, I paid $199 x 2 back in 2000. That worked out pretty well for me, and still going.
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Old 10-12-2012, 11:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattack View Post
You can pay lifetime (of the box) for service.. It's still a lot, but amortizes out to be cheap if you use it for a long time.
I have paid over the decade, $199 for lifetime on a S1, $199 on a transfer of same lifetime to a S3hd, and lastly, $299 on a lifetime for the S2.
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Old 10-13-2012, 09:36 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by ThAbtO View Post
I don't believe that offer is available anymore.
That sucks for new customers then. I have two Tivo's and pay $9.99 each. I can't imagine paying $19.99 each just to record the 4 networks I receive OTA.
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Old 10-13-2012, 09:49 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThAbtO View Post
I use usenet but its time consuming and you may not get all, if any, of the shows you wanted. I would also need to do extra steps such as decoding, joining, unzipping, but after all that, I can then send it to the Tivo. I have downloaded .mp4 and .mkv, and they work pretty well playing on Tivo.
I've been thinking about going back to usenet, but haven't gotten around to it.

I thought I'd read here that usenet tools had greatly improved from the old days and now the tools do all of the decoding, joining, and unzipping for you.
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Old 10-13-2012, 01:56 PM   #12
Gravis856
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Originally Posted by scooterboy View Post
I've been thinking about going back to usenet, but haven't gotten around to it.

I thought I'd read here that usenet tools had greatly improved from the old days and now the tools do all of the decoding, joining, and unzipping for you.
They do...for the most part, its all automated, all the way to the specific TV show 'subscription' or movie desired. Of course there are some random errors but most stuff arrives like clockwork now since its all automated.
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Old 10-13-2012, 03:13 PM   #13
ThAbtO
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Originally Posted by tiams View Post
That sucks for new customers then. I have two Tivo's and pay $9.99 each. I can't imagine paying $19.99 each just to record the 4 networks I receive OTA.
The $19.99 for Premieres had been reduced to $14.99/12.99 msd.
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Old 10-13-2012, 05:51 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by scooterboy View Post
I've been thinking about going back to usenet, but haven't gotten around to it.

I thought I'd read here that usenet tools had greatly improved from the old days and now the tools do all of the decoding, joining, and unzipping for you.
You can automate everything. You can even have all the shows you download pushed to your Tivo with all metadata attached.
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Old 10-15-2012, 07:04 PM   #15
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If you get the Premiere 4 or 4XL model, its only for digital cable and it would cost you more then 80 for the cable bill alone, it would not do antenna.
You can use the 4 and XL4 in conjunction with a lifeline cable subscription, assuming the cable company would allow you to keep the CableCARDs (which they should). That's more like $20-$30 a month instead of $80-$90. Maybe less. And it's effectively even cheaper if you get your internet through the cable company. The difference between having it and not having it is probably closer to $10 a month, or less.

That should get you all the content you'd get with an antenna, without an actual antenna. And with the ability to use a 4 tuner TiVo.
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