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Old 12-09-2012, 08:07 AM   #361
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Well, the failur of a wireless HDMI system here at our home has prompted me to give up on waiting for the mini.

Got our third Premiere with lifetime for $449 shipped yesterday for the kitchen/dining room tv. Will mount it up under a cabinet and use a couple moca adaptors to use the existing coax for both network and antenna.

Looks like we are headed for a networked set of premieres as our whole home solution rather than sharing a single Tivo to all sets.

Like wireless on the tivo, wireless HDMI is as flakey as a pillsbury pie crust. Glad to be rid of that non-solution, even though it was money wasted.
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Old 12-09-2012, 09:11 AM   #362
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Well, the failur of a wireless HDMI system here at our home has prompted me to give up on waiting for the mini.

Got our third Premiere with lifetime for $449 shipped yesterday for the kitchen/dining room tv. Will mount it up under a cabinet and use a couple moca adaptors to use the existing coax for both network and antenna.

Looks like we are headed for a networked set of premieres as our whole home solution rather than sharing a single Tivo to all sets.

Like wireless on the tivo, wireless HDMI is as flakey as a pillsbury pie crust. Glad to be rid of that non-solution, even though it was money wasted.
There are +s & -s to either using multiple DVRs or single/multiple DVR with extenders for a whole home solution.

My personal opinion is for OTA only homes even if extenders and 4-6 tuner DVRs were available, having multiple DVRs would still be superior solution.

Unfortunately TiVo isn't anywhere near providing a complete whole home solution using either method (multiple DVRs or single/multiple DVRs with extenders). And I am not sure they ever will.
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:47 AM   #363
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Dan or anybody else,
Why do you think that TiVo went ahead and put the Tuner Allocation option in with the last software update?

I'm just curious.

Thanks
my vote = they are fearful that the next software update would be even more delayed than the mini already appears to be. So they figured better but it out there now even if it wont get used till whenever the mini finally comes along (if ever to retail)...
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Old 12-09-2012, 02:56 PM   #364
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My personal opinion is for OTA only homes even if extenders and 4-6 tuner DVRs were available, having multiple DVRs would still be superior solution.
Even if there were a 6 tuner DVR and the Minis were available you'd still want multiple DVRs? Why? Having a single integrated To Do List has made my Elite worth every penny. Unfortunately my cable company prevents me from using it as my sole TiVo because they still broadcast analog stations, and the Elite doesn't do analog, so I had to keep a standard Premiere around to record the analog shows. As soon as they get rid of the analog stations, or simulcast them, and the Mini is released I'm replacing the Premiere with a Mini. 4 tuners is plenty for what I record and only managing a single To Do List for everything would be a dream.

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Old 12-09-2012, 03:14 PM   #365
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Even if there were a 6 tuner DVR and the Minis were available you'd still want multiple DVRs? Why? Having a single integrated To Do List has made my Elite worth every penny. Unfortunately my cable company prevents me from using it as my sole TiVo because they still broadcast analog stations, and the Elite doesn't do analog, so I had to keep a standard Premiere around to record the analog shows. As soon as they get rid of the analog stations, or simulcast them, and the Mini is released I'm replacing the Premiere with a Mini. 4 tuners is plenty for what I record and only managing a single To Do List for everything would be a dream.

Dan
I would downgrade from 3 TiVos to 2, but I would still want more than one. I like having overlap. One TiVo would be the main while the other would be backup and conflicts along with my dedicated push destination. I also tend to use my secondary TiVo as a place to keep concerts and movies I occasionally record.
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Old 12-09-2012, 07:42 PM   #366
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Even if there were a 6 tuner DVR and the Minis were available you'd still want multiple DVRs? Why? Having a single integrated To Do List has made my Elite worth every penny. Unfortunately my cable company prevents me from using it as my sole TiVo because they still broadcast analog stations, and the Elite doesn't do analog, so I had to keep a standard Premiere around to record the analog shows. As soon as they get rid of the analog stations, or simulcast them, and the Mini is released I'm replacing the Premiere with a Mini. 4 tuners is plenty for what I record and only managing a single To Do List for everything would be a dream.

Dan
Well remember I was talking about OTA as was the post I respond to so there is no cost of cable cards for multiple DVRs. Also I mention some key words like a "complete" whole home system.

The reality is TiVo is never going to provide OTA users with a complete whole home/family system. They are not going to provide a 4 or more tuner OTA system and they are not going to upgrade their software so that a multiple DVR system works like a complete whole home/family system should. So this topic is really academic and OTA users will have to cob together something that is close with what is and may be available.

But to answer you main question I would rather have redundancy with multiple DVRs than one main unit. I personally currently have 8 OTA tuners, 6 in 3 TiVo DVRs and 2 via HDHomerun on my network that are used by 2 computers. The TiVos have 5.25 TB of storage and the computers are basically limitless with about 8 TB of various internal/external/network storage available now. At this moment in time I am guessing I have about 8 TB of shows save in various places. So no having a single DVR with limited storage does not interest me.

Remember any functionality that a single DVR with extenders can provide can be replicated with software and multiple DVRs. So if a TiVo whole home/family system with one DVR and extenders ends up with more functionality than a multiple TiVo DVR whole home/family system it is only because TiVo decided to make it that way.

Just of kicks my basic requirements for a "complete" whole home/family system are pretty straight forward.
  1. The system should be able to include as many tuners as the family wants and the ability to add as much storage as needed.
  2. The system should provide the ability to "play" recorded or live video on any and all screens including TVs, Monitors, Projectors, laptops, tablets, smart phones, and anything else that comes along. The same would be true for any other services that are provided like access to music, photos, or Internet streaming services.
  3. The software should provide a seamless experience from an location and tie all the hardware together.
But again, just for the record, I don't expect TiVo to ever actually provide the above.
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Old 12-09-2012, 10:28 PM   #367
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Even if there were a 6 tuner DVR and the Minis were available you'd still want multiple DVRs? Why? Having a single integrated To Do List has made my Elite worth every penny.
A single integrated To Do List is a nice feature, and a single integrated My Shows list would be nice, too. But some OTA users receive stations from more than one direction, and it's usually easier to use multiple antennas each connected to a dedicated TiVo than to cobble up some complicated way to merge all the signals into one antenna feed.

I would like to see TiVo offer a four-tuner (or six-tuner) model with two inputs capable of tuning OTA frequencies and a third input for cable. Each tuner could be switched to use any of the three inputs by assigning each channel in the Channel List to Ant-1 or Ant-2 or cable. I don't think the software changes would be terribly difficult, but TiVo probably won't do anything like that unless the OTA market grows a lot more due to "cord cutting". Cable may be a 20th-Century technology, but OTA could still lose out to Internet delivery of everything or to legislative misadventure.
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Old 12-10-2012, 07:09 AM   #368
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There are +s & -s to either using multiple DVRs or single/multiple DVR with extenders for a whole home solution.

My personal opinion is for OTA only homes even if extenders and 4-6 tuner DVRs were available, having multiple DVRs would still be superior solution.

Unfortunately TiVo isn't anywhere near providing a complete whole home solution using either method (multiple DVRs or single/multiple DVRs with extenders). And I am not sure they ever will.
Curious what you believe is missing from the current multi tivo networked solution? Improvements could be made sure, but I see nothing really missing from basic functionality through the home.
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Old 12-10-2012, 09:05 AM   #369
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The TiVos have 5.25 TB of storage and the computers are basically limitless with about 8 TB of various internal/external/network storage available now. At this moment in time I am guessing I have about 8 TB of shows save in various places. So no having a single DVR with limited storage does not interest me.

Not to take the conversation off topic, but do you simply not delete shows or do you like to store entire seasons or DVDs or other all the time? My next question is: do you ever watch 8 TB of shows? Is it more about the system than the actual use?
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Old 12-10-2012, 11:15 AM   #370
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Curious what you believe is missing from the current multi tivo networked solution? Improvements could be made sure, but I see nothing really missing from basic functionality through the home.
My idea of a "complete system" is one where the software ties all the hardware together seamlessly and perhaps where there is the option to setup user accounts. So say I have 3 Premieres, a complete system would show you 6 tuners from any of the DVRs, a combined to do list, season pass list, listing of recorded shows, and perhaps even deal with sharing Storage as needed between units in a seamless way.

Currently what we have with multiple TiVo DVRs are TiVo DVRs working as individual stand alone systems that can stream content to each other. Plus TiVo is just starting to address tablet screens and really needs to update access via computer.

In my mind there is a long way to go before TiVo will actually have a "whole home system".
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Old 12-10-2012, 11:20 AM   #371
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Not to take the conversation off topic, but do you simply not delete shows or do you like to store entire seasons or DVDs or other all the time? My next question is: do you ever watch 8 TB of shows? Is it more about the system than the actual use?
I do record and save whole seasons of shows for future use. But mostly I just record everything (and anything) I might possible want to watch my guess is at some point I will have to admit I am never going to watch some stuff and delete it but I like knowing I always have something to watch regardless of what is actually being broadcast. I am sure I could live with and be happy with 4 tuners and 4TBs.
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Old 12-11-2012, 12:22 PM   #372
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I don't know how you get by with such a small amount of storage...

I used to use my TiVo Desktop alot for the RAID5 storage I have connected to it, but since getting both of my Elites, I rarely turn on my TiVo Desktop PC. Since those two boxes have almost the same amount of storage my TiVo Desktop has(one day I'll repurpose those drives to my second unRAID setup). Plus I don't keep alot of my HD TV shows available on Network storage like I used to ten years ago when I was recording every HD movie they broadcast as well as other shows. I've deleted alot of that old content now.
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Old 12-14-2012, 06:55 AM   #373
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When I spoke to a TiVo engineer at this past CEDIA I specifically asked him if you could have the Mini's use tuners from multiple Premiere's, and he said yes.
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Old 12-14-2012, 07:27 AM   #374
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Even if there were a 6 tuner DVR and the Minis were available you'd still want multiple DVRs? Why? Having a single integrated To Do List has made my Elite worth every penny. Unfortunately my cable company prevents me from using it as my sole TiVo because they still broadcast analog stations, and the Elite doesn't do analog, so I had to keep a standard Premiere around to record the analog shows. As soon as they get rid of the analog stations, or simulcast them, and the Mini is released I'm replacing the Premiere with a Mini. 4 tuners is plenty for what I record and only managing a single To Do List for everything would be a dream.

Dan
But with only one dvr, you're dependent upon that box for all your viewing on all your tv's. This is why I felt DirectTV's original WHDVR system was/is superior to Dish's Hopper/Joey or DirectTV's new Geni. It allows another dvr or stb with it's own tuner(s) to be a client box. Kind of like a failsafe measure.
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:02 AM   #375
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But with only one dvr, you're dependent upon that box for all your viewing on all your tv's. This is why I felt DirectTV's original WHDVR system was/is superior to Dish's Hopper/Joey or DirectTV's new Geni. It allows another dvr or stb with it's own tuner(s) to be a client box. Kind of like a failsafe measure.

If my Tivo dies suddenly and it is a 4 or possible 6 tuner unit powering a number of Minis, that is ok. I don't store anything important on these boxes. Just television shows that I'd like to watch but if I lose them - oh well. I don't feel the need a failsafe or backup. However, I do gain time from my life from having a single integrated list for recordings and season passes.
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Old 12-14-2012, 11:53 AM   #376
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If my Tivo dies suddenly and it is a 4 or possible 6 tuner unit powering a number of Minis, that is ok. I don't store anything important on these boxes. Just television shows that I'd like to watch but if I lose them - oh well. I don't feel the need a failsafe or backup. However, I do gain time from my life from having a single integrated list for recordings and season passes.
I was talking about being able to watch tv at all. If you only have one box with tuners in it and it fails, then you don't get to watch anything. Although, extra boxes with tuners are a lot more important with a satellite system than it would be with ota or cable because plenty of tv's have ATSC and clear QAM tuners.
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Old 12-14-2012, 12:02 PM   #377
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I was talking about being able to watch tv at all. If you only have one box with tuners in it and it fails, then you don't get to watch anything. Although, extra boxes with tuners are a lot more important with a satellite system than it would be with ota or cable because plenty of tv's have ATSC and clear QAM tuners.

I guess that's a risk I'm willing to take. I can stand to not watch tv for a few days.
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Old 12-14-2012, 01:49 PM   #378
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Me too. I hate managing multiple TiVos. If there was an easy way to have one TiVo that did everything and then have a couple extenders spread around the house I would do it for sure. And like you I feel like if it crashed I'd be fine. It's just TV, and anything I really wanted to watch could be downloaded from BitTorrent or watched via one of the various streaming services. It's not irreplaceable data.

Although if you were really paranoid there are programs that can turn a PC into a TiVo backup system. (at least for unencrypted data) I believe kmttg can be set to automatically download all shows and even back up your Season Passes. So the only thing you would lose are copy protected shows.

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Old 12-14-2012, 01:54 PM   #379
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If my Tivo dies suddenly and it is a 4 or possible 6 tuner unit powering a number of Minis, that is ok. I don't store anything important on these boxes. Just television shows that I'd like to watch but if I lose them - oh well. I don't feel the need a failsafe or backup. However, I do gain time from my life from having a single integrated list for recordings and season passes.
Well that has been my complaint all along there is no reason a multi DVR Whole Home system shouldn't be able to provide a single integrated list for recordings and season pases. It is just programing/software. Given the additional conflict resolution that is going to be needed to make a system with minis in it function correctly TiVo should just bite the bullet and make it work correctly regardless how many DVRs or minis are in the system.
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Old 12-14-2012, 02:06 PM   #380
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TiVo should just bite the bullet and make it work correctly regardless how many DVRs or minis are in the system.

I agree except with 2 tuner devices. Attaching 1 or 2 Minis to a 2 tuner Tivo will cripple it and be rather confusing to users.
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Old 12-14-2012, 02:21 PM   #381
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Well that has been my complaint all along there is no reason a multi DVR Whole Home system shouldn't be able to provide a single integrated list for recordings and season pases. It is just programing/software. Given the additional conflict resolution that is going to be needed to make a system with minis in it function correctly TiVo should just bite the bullet and make it work correctly regardless how many DVRs or minis are in the system.
It's not as easy as you'd think. Which TiVo would host the unified list? If that tiVo was removed from the network how would the other TiVos react? If each TiVo simply aggregated the lists of all other TiVos on the network that could be really slow. Have you ever seen how long it takes to populate the list of shows in TiVo Desktop? A single box doing all the recording, with multiple extenders positioned around the house, is a LOT easier from a programming perspective then cooperative scheduling amongst multiple TiVos.

Doing a simple conflict dialog that offers to schedule a one time recording on an alternate TiVo would be possible, but a single list across multiple networked boxes is a lot more difficult then it sounds and ripe with potential problems.

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Old 12-14-2012, 03:27 PM   #382
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I agree except with 2 tuner devices. Attaching 1 or 2 Minis to a 2 tuner Tivo will cripple it and be rather confusing to users.
Why would it? If one cares nothing about "Live" tv, like most people, a "Mini" should have no more impact on a 2 tuner device than a 200 tuner device. And the overall impact should be no worse than MRV or a network transfer.
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Old 12-14-2012, 03:28 PM   #383
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Why would it? If one cares nothing about "Live" tv, like most people, a "Mini" should have no more impact on a 2 tuner device than a 200 tuner device. And the overall impact should be no worse than MRV or a network transfer.
I care about live tv. I watch mostly recorded shows, but I do flip channels from time to time.
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Old 12-14-2012, 03:40 PM   #384
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It's not as easy as you'd think. Which TiVo would host the unified list? If that tiVo was removed from the network how would the other TiVos react? If each TiVo simply aggregated the lists of all other TiVos on the network that could be really slow. Have you ever seen how long it takes to populate the list of shows in TiVo Desktop? A single box doing all the recording, with multiple extenders positioned around the house, is a LOT easier from a programming perspective then cooperative scheduling amongst multiple TiVos.

Doing a simple conflict dialog that offers to schedule a one time recording on an alternate TiVo would be possible, but a single list across multiple networked boxes is a lot more difficult then it sounds and ripe with potential problems.

Dan
Well nothing is easy if you don't know how to do it.

But honestly TiVo is supposed to be a DVR software company, I can buy they don't want to spend the $$s given the current state of stand alone DVRs but I don't buy it would be difficult for them to do if they were willing to spend the development $$s.

I work at home sometimes and through a 5mps at best DSL line my work computer seamlessly provides me a connection to an exchange server several 1000 miles away and mirrors my email so I have instant access too it. Sending and receiving email even with larger attachments "appears" to be fast and is accomplished effortlessly because the system is designed well.

Sure seems like TiVo could cash and mirror data between multiple TiVos and be smart enough to know which TiVo data came from and gray it out if communication is lost locally just as easy. There should be no reason for a combined list of shows to take 1 second longer to come up than a list of show on that DVR only. Do you really expect your list of shows to come up slow with a mini like they do with the desktop software? If it does people will have a fit and TiVo will have a flop.
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Old 12-14-2012, 04:00 PM   #385
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I work at home sometimes and through a 5mps at best DSL line my work computer seamlessly provides me a connection to an exchange server several 1000 miles away and mirrors my email so I have instant access too it. Sending and receiving email even with larger attachments "appears" to be fast and is accomplished effortlessly because the system is designed well.
In that scenario the server at your office is doing all the heavy lifting and storing all the data. If the server goes down you can't access your email. That's really no different then having a single 6 tuner DVR with extenders placed around the house. The DVR is the server and the extenders are your PC.

Really think about what multiple TiVo cooperative scheduling would entail. The only way for scheduling to work properly would be to have one TiVo act as the central host, with the other TiVos acting as dumb tuners. What happens if the host goes offline or loses communication with one of the dumb tuners? TiVo's scheduling system is not real time, it would not be able to compensate for the loss of a tuner if it happened close to a scheduled recording.

It's not that such a system is impossible it's that it's so unreliable with so many points of failure it would be a nightmare to support. Moving all the tuners into a single box with dumb extenders around the house is a much easier system to manage. If one of the extenders goes offline or loses connection with the host then it does not effect recordings. And if the host goes offline then you're really no worse off then you would be if the host went offline in a cooperative system.

Now basic cooperation, such as offering to schedule a program on another TiVo if there is a known conflict or even aggregating the My Shows lists from all TiVos, would be possible and wouldn't negatively effect the user experience. So that sort of thing I could see happening. But a complete system where multiple TiVos act as one I just don't see happening.

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Old 12-14-2012, 04:04 PM   #386
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Why would it? If one cares nothing about "Live" tv, like most people, a "Mini" should have no more impact on a 2 tuner device than a 200 tuner device. And the overall impact should be no worse than MRV or a network transfer.
In the current software tuner allocation is a setting, so if they do ever allow a 2 tuner box to act as a Mini host I expect that setting will be limited to 0 or 1. A TiVo is basically useless if both tuners are allocated to remote devices.

Now if they get dynamic tuner allocation working and live TV on a Mini essentially works the same as watching live TV on the TiVo itself (i.e. it prompts you when it needs to change for a recording) then it wont really matter. I guess the only scenario they might have to deal with is if there are multiple people watching live TV at the same time, who gets the prompt?

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Old 12-14-2012, 04:09 PM   #387
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For series 4 TiVos all the hooks are already available to build your own master scheduling system that pools multiple series 4 units together based on the RPC protocol (that iPad/Android systems use). In such a system you would not need any season passes or wishlists on the TiVos themselves, rather the master scheduler would have all the season pass and wishlist information and simply schedule 1 time recordings on available tuners to it. Not something I would be keen on working on but it is possible.
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Old 12-14-2012, 04:17 PM   #388
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For series 4 TiVos all the hooks are already available to build your own master scheduling system that pools multiple series 4 units together based on the RPC protocol (that iPad/Android systems use). In such a system you would not need any season passes or wishlists on the TiVos themselves, rather the master scheduler would have all the season pass and wishlist information and simply schedule 1 time recordings on available tuners to it. Not something I would be keen on working on but it is possible.
I like the idea of that. Maybe a two tuner tivo can have another two tuner tivo's tuners allocated to it and then all season passes could flow through one box. This way multi room scheduling could be essentially accomplished.
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Old 12-14-2012, 04:31 PM   #389
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I like the idea of that. Maybe a two tuner tivo can have another two tuner tivo's tuners allocated to it and then all season passes could flow through one box. This way multi room scheduling could be essentially accomplished.
Under my scenario there would be a non-TiVo box (PC) running the software and controlling everything. That way all the season passes, wishlists, etc. are independent of a TiVo and easily backed up. The TiVos themselves essentially become dumb clients storing shows to be watched.
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Old 12-14-2012, 04:31 PM   #390
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I like the idea of that. Maybe a two tuner tivo can have another two tuner tivo's tuners allocated to it and then all season passes could flow through one box. This way multi room scheduling could be essentially accomplished.
I mentioned that above. But what happens if the second unit goes offline suddenly? Or if someone uses that TiVo to directly schedule a recording that supersedes the automatically scheduled one? Unless they made the second TiVo a complete slave to the host there are still a ton of things that could go wrong with that system. The same applies to the PC based one moyekj suggested. It's soooo much easier to just consolidate all the tuners into a single box. Plus it's cheaper for the user because they only have to pay for one subscription and one CableCARD.

The only advantages of having multiple units are possible protection against failure, but I suspect that failure would be more common with such a system because there are so many variables involved.

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