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Old 08-17-2012, 11:29 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by L David Matheny View Post
But the only difference between tuning OTA and cable signals is the frequency mapping and the modulation scheme. Traditionally both the tuner chips and the demodulator chips could handle both OTA and cable. Maybe some more recent chipsets can't tune OTA frequencies or (more likely) can't handle 8VSB-encoded signals, but my point is that handling OTA shouldn't require adding more chips but rather just choosing the right chipsets, which shouldn't add a lot of extra cost..
I would assume the OTA stations are far fewer than cable making the 4 tuner OTA not a must have product for most people, cable with what, 300+ useful channels and OTA maybe 16 in a big city five or six in other places.
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:42 AM   #32
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I would assume the OTA stations are far fewer than cable making the 4 tuner OTA not a must have product for most people, cable with what, 300+ useful channels and OTA maybe 16 in a big city five or six in other places.
I get about 45 OTA channels in the DFW aera, thats alot more than 16. Had cable & satellite, over half of it wasn't worth a flip IMO. I can only get analog cable were I current live. So the new tivo 4 channel won't work for me.
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Old 08-18-2012, 08:05 AM   #33
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I get about 45 OTA channels in the DFW aera, thats alot more than 16. Had cable & satellite, over half of it wasn't worth a flip IMO. I can only get analog cable were I current live. So the new tivo 4 channel won't work for me.
You get 45 separate channels or 45 channels including sub channels? If it's 45 separate plus the sub channels that is certainly a lot to choose from.

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Old 08-18-2012, 08:13 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by aaronwt

You get 45 separate channels or 45 channels including sub channels? If it's 45 separate plus the sub channels that is certainly a lot to choose from.

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Wouldn't that still come out to 45 channels to watch?
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Old 08-18-2012, 08:38 AM   #35
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Wouldn't that still come out to 45 channels to watch?
It depends on how you look at it. The sub channels are still part of the main channel broadcast. I can record the main channel on a PC and all the other sub channels are still part of that frequency. They will all be recorded as well and can be separated out later.

Around here the sub channels are typically SD. I rarely watch SD. Even eleven years ago SD comprised lesss than half of what I watched from broadcast. Now(not counting upconverted Network content like Hells Kitchen), it extremely rare for me to watch any broadcast SD content.

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Old 08-18-2012, 08:55 AM   #36
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The sub channels are still part of the main channel broadcast. I can record the main channel on a PC and all the other sub channels are still part of that frequency. They will all be recorded as well and can be separated out later.
You may be able to do this on a PC (I'd like to know how you do that) but a Tivo is not capable of doing this. Each program requires its own tuner, so recording a main channel and a sub channel would tie up a two tuner Tivo. The Tivo also records only the audio track that the Tivo is set to when the recording begins. So if someone wants descriptive audio, commentary-free sports or Spanish audio, that needs to be set before the recording starts.

The bottom line is that however you count the number of channels, there are plenty of ways that recording conflicts can occur on a two tuner Tivo receiving OTA broadcasts.
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Old 08-18-2012, 10:07 AM   #37
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Unfortunately our cable company is not on that bandwagon yet. We still have about 35 channels that are analog only. Most have HD equivalents or are crap I don't care about (music stations or 24 hours news stations), but there are a few like Comedy Central, AMC and FX that have original programming I enjoy and can't get any other way.

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Old 08-18-2012, 04:14 PM   #38
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I get about 45 OTA channels in the DFW aera, thats alot more than 16. Had cable & satellite, over half of it wasn't worth a flip IMO. I can only get analog cable were I current live. So the new tivo 4 channel won't work for me.
45 HD OTA channels to watch ?? WOW I guess i was incorrect, do you get stations like Comedy Central, the History ch. ect. In the Hartford CT area we get about 7 english HD OTA channels.
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:43 PM   #39
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You may be able to do this on a PC (I'd like to know how you do that) but a Tivo is not capable of doing this. Each program requires its own tuner, so recording a main channel and a sub channel would tie up a two tuner Tivo. The Tivo also records only the audio track that the Tivo is set to when the recording begins. So if someone wants descriptive audio, commentary-free sports or Spanish audio, that needs to be set before the recording starts.

The bottom line is that however you count the number of channels, there are plenty of ways that recording conflicts can occur on a two tuner Tivo receiving OTA broadcasts.
The information is typically there in the data stream when it's recorded. The program/device just needs to be able to use it. My HD recorder I used eleven years ago could view the sub channels with all my OTA recordings of the main channel.

ON the TiVo I can watch a recording and have audio choices when watching the recording, like descriptive audio. I have never looked at the alternate audio tracks on my Elites before. But I don't recall doing anything with those settings.
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Old 08-18-2012, 09:19 PM   #40
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In the Hartford CT area we get about 7 english HD OTA channels.
Looks like Hartford CT can get a lot of OTA channels.

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...9900fa942eadd6

25 are LOS alone, and that is before counting in subchannels. I would bet you can probably get 40 OTA channels, but that's just a guess without knowing anything about your location or DMA.

Anyways, there's tons of OTA content out there, but the current generation Tivo's can only tune to two subchannels at a time. This is a real limitation, IMO.
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Old 08-19-2012, 12:15 AM   #41
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ON the TiVo I can watch a recording and have audio choices when watching the recording, like descriptive audio.
How do you access this? On my Series 3 boxes, the Dolby Digital icon that is used to change audio tracks is completely absent from the program information display when viewing recordings.
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Old 08-19-2012, 02:06 AM   #42
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Anyways, there's tons of OTA content out there...
That's subjective.
OTA is more like cable now that it is digital.
Lots of channels, but only a few are worth watching.
I'd say it's at about the same ratio as cable.
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Old 08-19-2012, 11:45 AM   #43
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Brag? That's a weird choice of words. I'm a cord cutter now, but was streaming before I left DTV. Nothing to brag about, it's just something I use to watch some shows and movies.

What will I do if/when I'm throttled? I'll watch less TV.
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Old 08-19-2012, 01:16 PM   #44
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There is still the Premier, the four tuner versions are cable only. I wouldn't expect that Tivo would abandon the OTA market. They just aren't going to be giving you 4 tuner versions. I can certainly sympathize with those that choose to cut the cable, I don't care much for cable companies either. For the price of a Premier XL4, you can buy 2.6 Premier's. You can get the multi service on any more then one. Tivo is working on a device you can use without subscription to stream to additional rooms, as well. I can understand that it would be nice to have 4 OTA tuners and 2TB in a single device, but cable cutters are a niche market at this time. Some retailers still have some XLs (I only checked Amazon), so if you act quickly, you can get one of those.
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Old 08-19-2012, 01:37 PM   #45
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Tuner Sucks big time

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My Premiere has significantly inferior OTA tuning abilities compared to either my TiVo HD or my original Series 3. Most of this summer one or more of my OTA channels have not been available on the Premiere but are on the TiVo HD and Series 3. I have given up that TiVo will fix the problem and have decided to just keep the other units running.
I have a Premier and I can tell you the tuner SUCKS! I have six TVs and only one with the Tivo. I can watch all the local channels on every TV but not the Tivo. I have even moved it to where one of the other TVs sits and used that connection but the Tivo still won't pick up half the stations.

As for the Netflix and Hulu Plus, it works but inferior to the Ruko I bought for $89. Slower, takes longer to update, loses data on a regular basis.

I was so disappointed with Tivo, whom I have always loved in the past.. They sold me a pile of crap.

Anyone want to buy my new hardly used Premier?
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Old 08-19-2012, 01:43 PM   #46
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I have a Premier and I can tell you the tuner SUCKS! I have six TVs and only one with the Tivo. I can watch all the local channels on every TV but not the Tivo. I have even moved it to where one of the other TVs sits and used that connection but the Tivo still won't pick up half the stations.

As for the Netflix and Hulu Plus, it works but inferior to the Ruko I bought for $89. Slower, takes longer to update, loses data on a regular basis.

I was so disappointed with Tivo, whom I have always loved in the past.. They sold me a pile of crap.

Anyone want to buy my new hardly used Premier?
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Old 08-19-2012, 02:52 PM   #47
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I'm glad I got a good one.
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Old 08-19-2012, 03:19 PM   #48
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Looks like Hartford CT can get a lot of OTA channels.

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...9900fa942eadd6

25 are LOS alone, and that is before counting in subchannels. I would bet you can probably get 40 OTA channels, but that's just a guess without knowing anything about your location or DMA.

Anyways, there's tons of OTA content out there, but the current generation Tivo's can only tune to two subchannels at a time. This is a real limitation, IMO.
In Hartford CT you can't get the Springfield MA stations without a big antenna and correct positioning, but I have not kept up with OTA HD as i don't use it and you still can't get CNBC, the History Ch and many more. Your list had 5 CBS, 2 NBC, 5 ABC and 2 FOX stations, so I would get at best 14 stations having only only 4 different network programs, OTA is sure not for me or my family.
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Old 08-19-2012, 07:19 PM   #49
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How do you access this? On my Series 3 boxes, the Dolby Digital icon that is used to change audio tracks is completely absent from the program information display when viewing recordings.
While the recording was being played back I hit the info button and then selected the audio options at the bottom left. Then a menu came up with the audio tracks I could choose.

Of course not every channel or program has different options. I first tried it on a CNN recording which had no options. So then I checked CNN live, and there were still no options. I had to select a recording from another cable channel and it gave me the audio options while playing back the recording.


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I'm glad I got a good one.
Me too. I had six or seven Premieres running at one time and they were all fine with OTA. Now I'm only down to one Premiere(with a subscription) with an OTA tuner and it works great with my OTA channels.

If anything I would say the OTA tuner in my Premiere is better than my Toshiba and Samsung HDTV tuners. And also better than the tuner I have for my Boxee Box. Since the Premiere picks up a few more channels than all of those devices.
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Old 08-19-2012, 07:27 PM   #50
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While the recording was being played back I hit the info button and then selected the audio options at the bottom left. Then a menu came up with the audio tracks I could choose.
Thanks for the information. I'm guessing that's a feature only available on a Premiere. Virtually all my OTA channels have at least one alternate audio track, but when I view recordings and press the info button as you described, I get no options to choose from other than accessing captioning and parental controls.
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Old 08-20-2012, 05:54 AM   #51
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I have a Premier and I can tell you the tuner SUCKS! I have six TVs and only one with the Tivo. I can watch all the local channels on every TV but not the Tivo. I have even moved it to where one of the other TVs sits and used that connection but the Tivo still won't pick up half the stations.

As for the Netflix and Hulu Plus, it works but inferior to the Ruko I bought for $89. Slower, takes longer to update, loses data on a regular basis.

I was so disappointed with Tivo, whom I have always loved in the past.. They sold me a pile of crap.

Anyone want to buy my new hardly used Premier?
When I went into chat support with Tivo.. here is one comment from the support personnel:
"The TiVo has been known to degrade signal quality for antenna and cable channels."
So TiVo knows the tuner sucks.. they just haven't done anything about it.
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Old 08-20-2012, 09:35 AM   #52
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I'm glad I got a good one.
I doubt you got a "good one".. you got one that works for you perhaps.. but regarding the OTA Tuner.. I don't believe there are any actual "good ones". The tuners are inferior to even my little cheap D to A converter box..

OH.. and TiVo's original reason to me months ago for their tuner not working well.. "TiVo's tuner is more sensitive because it does so much with the signal than the TV"..
Yup.. that was what the customer service agent without a clue actually told me.
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Old 08-20-2012, 10:08 AM   #53
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I doubt you got a "good one".. you got one that works for you perhaps.. but regarding the OTA Tuner.. I don't believe there are any actual "good ones". The tuners are inferior to even my little cheap D to A converter box..

OH.. and TiVo's original reason to me months ago for their tuner not working well.. "TiVo's tuner is more sensitive because it does so much with the signal than the TV"..
Yup.. that was what the customer service agent without a clue actually told me.
I believe it's a good tuner. I get all my networks without a problem, and better than my previous tuner that I used on the same antenna setup. And 41 miles from the transmitters. (Attic antenna)

Sorry you didn't get a good one.
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Old 08-20-2012, 12:34 PM   #54
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I believe it's a good tuner. I get all my networks without a problem, and better than my previous tuner that I used on the same antenna setup. And 41 miles from the transmitters. (Attic antenna)

Sorry you didn't get a good one.
There is no "good one" or "bad one" just good and bad receiving environments. A good receiving environment will make the Pemiere shine, while a bad receiving environment will reveal how it's a big step backward from its predecessor.

I think people are confusing tuner sensitivity with a tuner's multipath handling capability. High sensitivity allows a tuner to do more with a weaker signal, while multipath handling allows a tuner to deal with dynamic reflections of a signal that could be either weak or strong. The Premiere may be really good at detecting and displaying weak signals under ideal conditions, but add in any significant dynamic signal reflections and its performance tanks big time. There was speculation that the Premiere's multipath performance could be tweaked in software, but obviously if this is possible, it has not happened yet.

Because most OTA TV is broadcast on UHF frequencies, it is extremely prone to multipath problems and it doesn't matter how sensitive the tuner is if the presence of dynamic multipath reflections confuses the tuner.

Early tuners couldn't handle multipath at all. I live in an area that could safely be called multipath hell: Bottom of a hill, surrounded by trees and other houses, with frequent air traffic overhead. My first HDTV used to lock up whenever it was windy or a plane flew overhead. By the time we got to the series 3, tuners had improved dramatically, and some of the digital converter boxes are outstanding at rejecting multipath reflections.

Anyway, the Series 3 was the first tuner that allowed me to watch TV at my location without incessant breakups. In direct comparison, the Premiere failed the multipath test at my location miserably, while my Series 3 units, current TV tuners, PC tuner, etc. all continue to sing along just fine in such an unfriendly reception environment.

I'm in no way challenging anyone who touts the Premiere as working very well for them OTA, I'm just trying to point out that it's most likely working well for them because their receiving environment doesn't tax the tuner in any way that would reveal its faults.

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Old 08-20-2012, 02:18 PM   #55
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I'm in no way challenging anyone who touts the Premiere as working very well for them OTA, I'm just trying to point out that it's most likely working well for them because their receiving environment doesn't tax the tuner in any way that would reveal its faults.
Unfortunately I agree completely
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Old 08-20-2012, 05:41 PM   #56
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Me too.

It has to be a local reception issue.

I have an unsubscribed Premiere on a home made antenna like this:



And I get my OTA channels just fine.

Edit: I will say that the signal strength meter does register lower on the Premiere as opposed to the TivoHD I have on the same antenna, but I don't notice any appreciable difference in the reception.
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Old 08-21-2012, 03:34 AM   #57
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You have no data to support that. I have a $2000 sound system, over $2000 TV (when I purchased it) and 3 HD TiVos and I do not have cable or Satellite. Over 90% of what I watch comes from OTA with the other 10% being blu-ray and streaming. Which is more than enough content for me - no need to pay for any more. Many people are starting to find cable/satellite a bad value and find OTA with some streaming services a better value while providing sufficient content for their needs/desires.

TiVo has enough data to know what is likely to make sense to develop. My guess is that without the cable companies they couldn't have developed the 4 tuner cable DVRs so I tend to believe we will not see a 4 tuner OTA one. However I do believe they will continue to support OTA with what ever ends up being their enter level DVR for a long time.

I am guessing most OTA users would be looking at upgrading for exactly the same reason someone using a Series 3 on cable would want to upgrade.

The same thing people who purchase cable or Satellite want. Why would you think that the source of someone's TV changes what they want in a DVR?
Why don't you Google "cord cutting movement" and you will see the poster is correct in statement the movement is about saving money. Or you can just continue to think that you're the center of the universe, and that your situation is the rule and not the exception. That seems to be working out well for you thus far.
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Old 08-21-2012, 06:00 AM   #58
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Why don't you Google "cord cutting movement" and you will see the poster is correct in statement the movement is about saving money. Or you can just continue to think that you're the center of the universe, and that your situation is the rule and not the exception. That seems to be working out well for you thus far.
If you have any real data go ahead and post it. All I no is no one has contacted me or any the other people I know that don't currently have pay TV to obtain information on why we don't have pay TV. Lots of people try to save money on lots of things just because someone isn't willing to spend money on pay TV doesn't mean they are unwilling to spend money on a good OTA DVR. I know plenty of people who cut coupons to save money on their food bills but they still are willing to spend money on going out to eat at good restaurants.

Until someone can prove otherwise, I will continue to think it is foolish to assume someone/everyone who isn't willing to pay for cable/satellite automatically isn't willing to pay for a DVR and isn't interested in a good DVR.
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Old 08-21-2012, 07:11 AM   #59
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Edit: I will say that the signal strength meter does register lower on the Premiere as opposed to the TivoHD I have on the same antenna, but I don't notice any appreciable difference in the reception.
I have to believe there is no standard for signal meters. I have 6 devices with OTA tuners and other than my 2 Series 3 units none of them show very similar signal strength.
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Old 08-21-2012, 08:01 AM   #60
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While I don't feel that Tivo will be abandoning the ota market soon. The recent deals with pay-tv providers show that it's not a market they consider that important. I'm sure the next-gen Tivo's will have an ota enabled model. It will either be a base model with minimal features or even a rebadged current-gen Premiere. Signing up with the pay-tv providers tells me that ota support days are numbered. Which is really too bad. Tivo was a prime example for people to cut the cord. But Tivo is probably making more money working with the cabelco's than they are by challanging the status quo.
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