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Old 04-27-2010, 09:29 AM   #1
pcguru83
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So how is Netflix on the TiVo Premiere?

I've got a brand new TiVo Premiere on it's way to me that should arrive tomorrow. We're coming from a DirecTiVo and are very much looking forward to the Netflix streaming component of the TiVo Premiere.

What can we expect in terms of overall experience and performance? In looking over some past threads, seems the Netflix functionality was met with rather mixed reviews on the TiVo HD and Series 3. Have things improved any?

I seriously considered just getting a TiVo HD refurb for $199 and then buying the Sonly Bluray player with Netflix functionality that was on sale at Best Buy the last few days. Unfortunately, I missed out on that deal, so I went ahead and pulled the trigger on the Premiere. Here's hoping I don't regret going with the Premiere.

How's the interface? Is the HD of decent quality? Having never streamed HD before, how does it compare to something like Bluray? How hard is it to find HD content on Netflix?
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Old 04-27-2010, 10:46 AM   #2
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i think the Netflix on the S4 is just fine, I liked the Roku better, but being able to search for things with the S4 certainly makes up for it. and the only time I really dislike watching Netflix on my TPXL is when I am watching a season, and it does not automatically remember what show i am on like the Roku would.
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:00 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by pcguru83 View Post
I've got a brand new TiVo Premiere on it's way to me that should arrive tomorrow. We're coming from a DirecTiVo and are very much looking forward to the Netflix streaming component of the TiVo Premiere.

What can we expect in terms of overall experience and performance? In looking over some past threads, seems the Netflix functionality was met with rather mixed reviews on the TiVo HD and Series 3. Have things improved any?

I seriously considered just getting a TiVo HD refurb for $199 and then buying the Sonly Bluray player with Netflix functionality that was on sale at Best Buy the last few days. Unfortunately, I missed out on that deal, so I went ahead and pulled the trigger on the Premiere. Here's hoping I don't regret going with the Premiere.

How's the interface? Is the HD of decent quality? Having never streamed HD before, how does it compare to something like Bluray? How hard is it to find HD content on Netflix?
It's definitely better than the Sony. Things start playing faster, and there are thumbnails when fast-forwarding/rewinding. The Sony doesn't have thumbnails, which makes fast-forwarding/rewinding maddening.
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:04 AM   #4
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... it does not automatically remember what show i am on like the Roku would.
I hope this can and will be available in a future update. I'm coming from watching NetFlix on an xBox 360, which is very nice and has the "percentage watched" feature.

With that said, Netflix integration on the Premiere is pretty good, albeit bare-bones.
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:24 AM   #5
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Roku has a bar that shows how much of a show you have watched
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Old 04-27-2010, 12:22 PM   #6
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It works well for me. My S3 never played instant watch in HD. Premiere sure does. Glad I don't have to switch over to the PS3 or 360 anymore.
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Old 04-27-2010, 12:37 PM   #7
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It works well for me. My S3 never played instant watch in HD. Premiere sure does. Glad I don't have to switch over to the PS3 or 360 anymore.
How is the quality of the HD content?
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Old 04-27-2010, 12:38 PM   #8
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How is the quality of the HD content?
Seemed roughly the same as it was on the 360. To me, it's sort of like a good DVD, but well below Blu-ray for sure. Closer to DVD than Blu-ray.
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Old 04-27-2010, 12:39 PM   #9
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My wife is home recovering from surgery, and so has made very extensive use of Netflix on my new Tivo Premiere this past week.

Overall, we're both quite pleased with it. On Sunday afternoon, things quit working for a while, and I got one Tivo reboot during this time (I've read that their error handling is not real robust). Other than that, it has worked very well, and picture quality is excellent. I also just got my Fios internet upgraded to 25 Mbps, which certainly can't hurt. I don't own a Blu-Ray player, so I can't compare to that, but PQ has generally been as good as anything I've watched on DVD.
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Old 04-27-2010, 12:41 PM   #10
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Seemed roughly the same as it was on the 360. To me, it's sort of like a good DVD, but well below Blu-ray for sure. Closer to DVD than Blu-ray.
+1...^^^ accurate description.
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Old 04-27-2010, 01:20 PM   #11
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Seemed roughly the same as it was on the 360. To me, it's sort of like a good DVD, but well below Blu-ray for sure. Closer to DVD than Blu-ray.
I know a lot of you probably have a 1080p TV. But mine is a little older showing 1080i/720P max resolution (Older pioneer elite). The older dvd's were 480P and the blu ray is 1080P. BluRays still look better on my tv than regular DVD even though I only get 720P.
Maybe this is subjective but Do you think Netflix is equal up to the older HD standard of 720p/1090I? I was thinking of subscribing.
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Old 04-27-2010, 01:39 PM   #12
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How about Amazon HD Videos on demand? Arent those encoded at a higher bitrate than Netflix, and 1080/24p? Is it a noticeable difference from Netflix HD material (720P encoded)?
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Old 04-27-2010, 01:43 PM   #13
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I know a lot of you probably have a 1080p TV. But mine is a little older showing 1080i/720P max resolution (Older pioneer elite). The older dvd's were 480P and the blu ray is 1080P. BluRays still look better on my tv than regular DVD even though I only get 720P.
Maybe this is subjective but Do you think Netflix is equal up to the older HD standard of 720p/1090I? I was thinking of subscribing.
Mine's 1080p DLP. On yours, it might look decent. A big problem is content too, there's just not that much on netflix HD really. TV stuff yes, but not many movies it seems. And usually I'd rather just rent the Blu-ray's of those. But honestly, I think the 3 blurays I get at a time + the streaming is a good value.

edit: The difference between Bluray and streaming on audio is massive. I'm not sure what they use on streaming, but if you can use lossless bluray it'll be no contest. Also, 24fps TV's make a bigger difference as well. Still, for the price you get 720p-ish streaming and the discs, a good deal.

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Old 04-27-2010, 02:31 PM   #14
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i was talking to tivo.com customer support about my TiVo Desktop Plus issue, and I asked if they had any word about updating the Netflix app and he just said, "no"
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Old 04-27-2010, 02:51 PM   #15
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I had some breakup in the movies with video set to only 1080i. Then I enabled all the video modes on the Tivo Premiere (480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p).

I think that may allow Netflix to adjust the video output as the network throughput varies.

Netflix video quality if very good with all video modes enabled. No complaints here on video quality with a 12 Mb/sec DSL connection.
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Old 04-27-2010, 02:54 PM   #16
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The Premiere Netflix quality appears to be the same as the HD.

- Rich
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Old 04-27-2010, 06:28 PM   #17
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Seems ok, could be better, though.

Since we are now receiing Off-The-Air only, we are definitely searching for a bit more content, and Netflix fills the bills nicely.

The quality is fine on our ancient 32" CRT TV - about the same as the Dish Network we used to have.

A couple drawbacks we have noticed. Some may be related to our DSL, not sure... we have 1.5 MBps service.

1. Scrolling through queue of titles is quite slow. It takes 5+ seconds for the list to display on the screen when you page down or up (channel down/up).

2. The Tivo is very slow to respond to commands such as pause, FF, RW. Usually 3+ seconds before the command is recognized.

3. We have not found any way to adjust the aspect ratio of incoming video. This seems really odd to us. Everything we get on Netflix is 4:3 pan and scan. We do have a 4:3 TV, but we sure would prefer to watch movies in letterbox! Maybe this is a setting in Netflix? We'll look. Though Tivo allows us to choose letterbox for widescreen material from the antenna, it denies us any change for Netflix.

Other than those minor issues, no complaint for free viewing!
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Old 04-27-2010, 09:05 PM   #18
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I know a lot of you probably have a 1080p TV. But mine is a little older showing 1080i/720P max resolution
It can't be both. Either the max resolution is 1080i (which is the same as 1080p) = 1920x1080 or it is 720P = 1280x720.

Either way it won't matter when watching Netflix streaming.
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Old 04-27-2010, 09:09 PM   #19
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The Premiere Netflix quality appears to be the same as the HD.
I haven't seen it on the Premiere, but my GUESS would be that it WOULD be the same quality. I don't think Netflix broadcasts any better than what the HD could/can display.

The bigger question in my mind is the quality of the INTERFACE. I just go the Nintendo Wii Netflix disc last week and tried it.... WOW. The interface is wonderful! It makes the TiVo HD's look like crap. It is intuitive, fast, adjusts the screen properly to the aspect ratio, and lets me browse and add stuff on the fly (and other stuff).
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Old 04-27-2010, 09:12 PM   #20
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3. We have not found any way to adjust the aspect ratio of incoming video. This seems really odd to us. Everything we get on Netflix is 4:3 pan and scan. We do have a 4:3 TV, but we sure would prefer to watch movies in letterbox! Maybe this is a setting in Netflix? We'll look. Though Tivo allows us to choose letterbox for widescreen material from the antenna, it denies us any change for Netflix.
Unfortunately, the TiVo's "stupid" Netflix interface does not allow you to change the aspect ratio... AT ALL. It just uses whatever was LAST used when watching SD video. So exit Netflix, go watch something recorded in SD, then you can adjust your ratio, the restart Netflix. (Yes, I learned that the hard way).

Of course, this will *NOT* fix the "problem" if Netflix really did encode/broadcast at 4x3... then you are stuck. I have seen a mixture of 4x3, 16:9, and panarama from Netflix, so I know they do all three.
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Old 04-28-2010, 12:07 PM   #21
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It's extremely basic, you can navigate the movies in your instant queue, that's it. Quality is fine, some are in HD.

It is pretty simple and disappointing compared to the experience on wii, PS3 etc. Those you can look through all the different categories, new releases, recently watched in addition to your instant queue.

I really hope they upgrade the interface soon it is very disappointing especially when you buy a new box that 's supposed to do all these great things with HD interfaces.

I really hope they are able to include all these other features in a new interface on tivo, if you only experience with netflix streaming is via tivo's interface, you're missing out.
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Old 04-28-2010, 12:12 PM   #22
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i was talking to tivo.com customer support about my TiVo Desktop Plus issue, and I asked if they had any word about updating the Netflix app and he just said, "no"
If I ever learned anything, it's that customer support from most of these companies are pretty lame. Engineers and customer reps don't exactly talk on a regular basis, so often times they know as much as we do. The rest is speculation. They are typicaly trained as damage control, and customer retention, basic troubleshooting, restart the box, wait 8 minutes, it doesn't work send it to us kind of thing.

I would certainly hope that they have plans to update the interface, if not that's very unfortunately, but then again not surprising.
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Old 04-28-2010, 12:13 PM   #23
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It's extremely basic, you can navigate the movies in your instant queue, that's it. Quality is fine, some are in HD.

It is pretty simple and disappointing compared to the experience on wii, PS3 etc. Those you can look through all the different categories, new releases, recently watched in addition to your instant queue.

I really hope they upgrade the interface soon it is very disappointing especially when you buy a new box that 's supposed to do all these great things with HD interfaces.

I really hope they are able to include all these other features in a new interface on tivo, if you only experience with netflix streaming is via tivo's interface, you're missing out.
If you know what you're looking for, TiVo Search on the Premiere allows you to play Netflix content (if available) without the need to add it to your Instant Queue. On the other hand, there are times that I do not know what I want to watch, and prefer browsing content. For that, I do have to go to the Netflix site and add what I find to the Instant Queue.
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Old 04-29-2010, 01:25 PM   #24
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Unfortunately, the TiVo's "stupid" Netflix interface does not allow you to change the aspect ratio... AT ALL. It just uses whatever was LAST used when watching SD video. So exit Netflix, go watch something recorded in SD, then you can adjust your ratio, the restart Netflix. (Yes, I learned that the hard way).

Of course, this will *NOT* fix the "problem" if Netflix really did encode/broadcast at 4x3... then you are stuck. I have seen a mixture of 4x3, 16:9, and panarama from Netflix, so I know they do all three.
This worked like a charm, thank you!
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Old 04-29-2010, 01:52 PM   #25
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Roku has a bar that shows how much of a show you have watched
so does the 360. but I still only use my TivoHD/Premieres. Much more convenient.
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Old 04-29-2010, 02:01 PM   #26
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How is the speed of getting the Instant Queue list on the Premier? On my S3 it's slow as mud, I've been using my Samsung BluRay to watch lately just because it takes 305 minutes to get the initial list, with 30-60 seconds between each page. The Samsung is almost instant with the connect and browsing the list.
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Old 04-29-2010, 02:24 PM   #27
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maybe the issue is your router/network. My HD and Premiere are both up within 5 seconds.
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Old 04-29-2010, 02:30 PM   #28
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Mine is the same as Scott. It's slow, but nothing longer than 5 seconds to bring up the list, or scroll between pages of the list.
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Old 04-29-2010, 03:45 PM   #29
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same for me, pretty quick
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Old 04-29-2010, 04:20 PM   #30
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How is the speed of getting the Instant Queue list on the Premier? On my S3 it's slow as mud, I've been using my Samsung BluRay to watch lately just because it takes 305 minutes to get the initial list, with 30-60 seconds between each page. The Samsung is almost instant with the connect and browsing the list.
I've recently learned that your ISP and/or router make a huge difference. I've used my Series 3s with Netflix quite a bit over the last couple months and the interface was fine. Not blazing fast, but definitely good enough. But I recently switched my ISP from Time Warner to AT&T U-verse, and now it is as bad as you're describing. It is probably 2-3 minutes before I see the initial Netflix screen and 30 seconds to page up/down. And that is on a Tivo that is hardwired to the router. The really strange thing is I actually have faster internet speeds now than I did before. I went from 6mbs with Time Warner to 12mbs with AT&T. And it's obvious on my PC's that my internet speed is faster. But, either AT&T is throttling the Netflix connection, or there is something in my router that is slowing it down. If anybody has any suggestions to help me out, I'm all ears.
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