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Old 08-04-2014, 05:37 PM   #1
Banker257
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TiVo or Genie?

Just moved to a neiborhood where my only choice is satellite. No cable here whatsoever. I've heard some very bad things about Dish and their service and they dont offer Tivo at all so I have no choice but to go with Directv.

When I called directv to inquire about TiVo I was told that they don't recommend TiVo, that their Genie is a much better and cheaper solution.

Anyone have experience with these two systems? The genie seems to be a lot cheaper but I don't mind paying a premium for TiVo if it's better.
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Old 08-04-2014, 06:40 PM   #2
stevel
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I have both, so yes, I have experience. With the TiVo (THR22), you get two tuners and the classic TiVo UI. With the Genie you get five tuners, VOD and even 3D capability should you care about that, and whole home video option (with additional units.)

Personally, I find the Genie a more compelling product. Nothing particularly wrong with the THR22 other than it misses out on a lot of features you get with the Genie (VOD is supposed to work on the THR22 but doesn't.) There's also a new feature not available on the THR22 which, on some channels, lets you watch a show from the beginning even if you just tuned into it late.

And if you want to know why I have both - my wife insists on the TiVo UI and she doesn't care about the other stuff. I like the other stuff.
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Old 08-05-2014, 11:07 AM   #3
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There is only one reason to get TiVo over the Genie - the interface. I lived with the THR22 for 2.5 years and decided that the features of the Genie were more compelling, so I retired the TiVo-driven box for it. I now have a total of seven tuners (five on the Genie and two on the HR-22 in the bedroom), no conflicts, VOD, Whole Home, 3D programming and more, and I'm not paying an extra $5/mo for the privilege (although I AM paying $3 for the whole-home).

The only thing I could honestly say I prefer on the TiVo box is the guide when in list mode. The Genie goes part way in that you can go to the channel name and hit Info for a list of what's coming up on that channel, but it's not as good. That's a minor inconvenience for all the pros offered.
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Old 08-05-2014, 01:55 PM   #4
Banker257
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyTheTiger View Post
There is only one reason to get TiVo over the Genie - the interface. I lived with the THR22 for 2.5 years and decided that the features of the Genie were more compelling, so I retired the TiVo-driven box for it. I now have a total of seven tuners (five on the Genie and two on the HR-22 in the bedroom), no conflicts, VOD, Whole Home, 3D programming and more, and I'm not paying an extra $5/mo for the privilege (although I AM paying $3 for the whole-home).

The only thing I could honestly say I prefer on the TiVo box is the guide when in list mode. The Genie goes part way in that you can go to the channel name and hit Info for a list of what's coming up on that channel, but it's not as good. That's a minor inconvenience for all the pros offered.
Thanks guys. Directv has offered me an incredible deal to go with the Genie. The money saved is well worth any learning curve we may have to go through.
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Old 08-05-2014, 05:07 PM   #5
christheman
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Originally Posted by Banker257 View Post
Thanks guys. Directv has offered me an incredible deal to go with the Genie. The money saved is well worth any learning curve we may have to go through.
I don't have the Directv Tivo, so I cannot compare those two. But we changed from cable/Tivo to Directv with Genie recently too, also to save money. Then we realized the technical improvements in the satellite service which outweighed any losses for us.
So here are some comparative things I have noted so far:

There is not a button to switch between tuners. But that is compensated for with the feature described here.
http://blog.solidsignal.com/content....-the-beginning

The wishlist scheduling is quite a bit different, but is still useful. It can apparently pull up different movies by actor name and schedule an "auto record", using Smart Search. It automatically stores your searches, which you can search with later, or delete. Then there is also the My Programs list, the To Do List, and Series Manager. I haven't gotten around to testing and confirming how well the "auto-record" works yet.

No SDV. (see my thread below). With cable, sometimes there are locations that have channels frequently dropping out, due to network congestion. Not so with satellite.

I noticed an improvement in HD detail, as well as smoother motion and fewer transient glitches. Also the audio-visual synchronization seems much improved over cable. Having nothing else to attribute these improvements to, I will say they are likely due to newer MPEG 4 (MP4) reception, versus older MPEG 2 still used on cable in the US.

There are two user-configurable channel lists, which any or all of the Genie Clients can use. Other channel list options are "all channels" or "channels I receive".

The computer program used to transfer programs costs extra (I think it is called Nomad). It can be used to download programs from the Genie to computer or to Ipad. I didn't need to get this since I was already using a capture card with a computer. With that I can either record it directly to my computer when it airs (with scheduled DVR computer program), or record it on the Genie first and then simultaneously play that recording and record it to my computer manually with capture card.

Over the air (local channels and their substations) are received through a Directv AM21 OFF AIR TUNER, and a digital antenna. The channels received by this unit are then mapped to the Genie and available on all Clients.

And to get a little nitpicky:

Once you are in the Guide, if you just move up or down in the grid, the select button will change channels. However if you move left or right, and then push Select, it will ask you if you want to schedule a recording or a series. With the guide being in a single pane, it either does one or the other. So you need to either exit and reenter the guide, or else go horizontally back to the current hour in order to change channels again.

The remote has a one-touch Record button right next to the Guide button, so I sometimes find myself accidentally scheduling recordings. In addition, that button is colored orange and marked with an "R".

The Delete button on the remote is marked with a red circle, just like anyone else's Record button.

There are two power buttons, an On and an Off. The On will toggle the TV on and off, but only turn the Genie on. The Off will also toggle the TV on and off, but only turn the Genie off. So it is possible to get them out of order.

There is a History list of the recorded shows and who deleted them (by Client machine name). So record with discretion. They will eventually roll off though. The only way to clear this is to do a machine reset and delete all your recorded shows and settings.

Hope that helps someone. Sorry for the book, I guess I got carried away.
Chris

Last edited by christheman : 08-05-2014 at 05:16 PM.
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Old 08-05-2014, 06:47 PM   #6
Banker257
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christheman View Post
I don't have the Directv Tivo, so I cannot compare those two. But we changed from cable/Tivo to Directv with Genie recently too, also to save money. Then we realized the technical improvements in the satellite service which outweighed any losses for us.
So here are some comparative things I have noted so far:

There is not a button to switch between tuners. But that is compensated for with the feature described here.
http://blog.solidsignal.com/content....-the-beginning

The wishlist scheduling is quite a bit different, but is still useful. It can apparently pull up different movies by actor name and schedule an "auto record", using Smart Search. It automatically stores your searches, which you can search with later, or delete. Then there is also the My Programs list, the To Do List, and Series Manager. I haven't gotten around to testing and confirming how well the "auto-record" works yet.

No SDV. (see my thread below). With cable, sometimes there are locations that have channels frequently dropping out, due to network congestion. Not so with satellite.

I noticed an improvement in HD detail, as well as smoother motion and fewer transient glitches. Also the audio-visual synchronization seems much improved over cable. Having nothing else to attribute these improvements to, I will say they are likely due to newer MPEG 4 (MP4) reception, versus older MPEG 2 still used on cable in the US.

There are two user-configurable channel lists, which any or all of the Genie Clients can use. Other channel list options are "all channels" or "channels I receive".

The computer program used to transfer programs costs extra (I think it is called Nomad). It can be used to download programs from the Genie to computer or to Ipad. I didn't need to get this since I was already using a capture card with a computer. With that I can either record it directly to my computer when it airs (with scheduled DVR computer program), or record it on the Genie first and then simultaneously play that recording and record it to my computer manually with capture card.

Over the air (local channels and their substations) are received through a Directv AM21 OFF AIR TUNER, and a digital antenna. The channels received by this unit are then mapped to the Genie and available on all Clients.

And to get a little nitpicky:

Once you are in the Guide, if you just move up or down in the grid, the select button will change channels. However if you move left or right, and then push Select, it will ask you if you want to schedule a recording or a series. With the guide being in a single pane, it either does one or the other. So you need to either exit and reenter the guide, or else go horizontally back to the current hour in order to change channels again.

The remote has a one-touch Record button right next to the Guide button, so I sometimes find myself accidentally scheduling recordings. In addition, that button is colored orange and marked with an "R".

The Delete button on the remote is marked with a red circle, just like anyone else's Record button.

There are two power buttons, an On and an Off. The On will toggle the TV on and off, but only turn the Genie on. The Off will also toggle the TV on and off, but only turn the Genie off. So it is possible to get them out of order.

There is a History list of the recorded shows and who deleted them (by Client machine name). So record with discretion. They will eventually roll off though. The only way to clear this is to do a machine reset and delete all your recorded shows and settings.

Hope that helps someone. Sorry for the book, I guess I got carried away.
Chris
Thanks Chris. Looking forward to play with it. Scheduled to be installed tomorrow.
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:24 PM   #7
stevel
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There is a way to switch tuners - they call it DoublePlay. You have to first enable it, then you can switch between tuners (to be honest, I'm not certain how this works with five tuners as I don't use the feature), then you use the down-arrow remote button to switch.

One thing the TiVo has the Genie doesn't is a "Deleted programs" folder - once you delete a show, it's gone.
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Old 08-05-2014, 09:26 PM   #8
christheman
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Originally Posted by stevel View Post
There is a way to switch tuners - they call it DoublePlay. You have to first enable it, then you can switch between tuners (to be honest, I'm not certain how this works with five tuners as I don't use the feature), then you use the down-arrow remote button to switch.

One thing the TiVo has the Genie doesn't is a "Deleted programs" folder - once you delete a show, it's gone.
Yup, I thought about the Deleted folder as soon as I had shut my computer off and had left my house.

IMO the DoublePlay isn't even worth mentioning since it is only good for (I think) two hours. Then it shuts off. I have accidentally activated it, I think by pressing the down arrow more than once. A popup comes up near the bottom of the screen, similar to the Restart feature, for user confirmation.
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Old 08-06-2014, 04:05 AM   #9
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To add to that, there seems to be about a 1.5 hour allowable pause cache while I stay on one tuner. Not sure if anything would change with DoublePlay.
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Old 08-06-2014, 08:11 AM   #10
TonyTheTiger
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The buffer is indeed 1.5 hours (only 30 mins on the TiVo box).

Doubleplay works quite well and will switch between two tuners (not all five). It can be a little fiddly at first, but once you get the hang of it, it can be quite useful. When switching back to a previously paused show, it will start playing immediately from the point at which it was paused. Again, when you first start using it, you do wonder if it paused or not, but it doesn't take long to acclimatize.
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Old 08-06-2014, 06:17 PM   #11
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Thanks! I will look into DoublePlay a bit further for myself.

P.S. The 1.5 hour buffer is a very cool thing in my book.

Last edited by christheman : 08-06-2014 at 06:30 PM.
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