I currently have two TiVo HD boxes with upgraded 1TB drives. One is in the living room, one in the bedroom. My living room box has a majority of my primary/favorite season passes and has lifetime. The bedroom box only gets a primetime season pass when there's a 3 or 4 way conflict on the living room, and is grandfathered in at 6.95/month.
My cable company is Buckeye Cablesystem, I have 1 M-Card and a tuning adapter for each box. I have been successful in the past moving a cablecard from one box to another, and getting it re-paired over the phone.
I have the opportunity to buy a TiVo Premier XL4 for about $270
I'm thinking of putting the XL4 in the living room. Since lifetime isn't transferable, and I don't believe I can do a TSN swap on the 6.95/month subscription for a premiere (correct me if I'm wrong), I would at least initially, do the 12.99/month with MSD. Since all the boxes would be active at the same time, I would use tivo.com to move all of my season passes from both HD boxes to the XL. Then, until the TiVo mini materializes, keep one box in the bedroom for MRV (Yes I know the limitations, for me it's just HBO & BBC America), and sell the other.
But, before take the plunge and spend money on myself at Christmas time, I have a few questions.
1) I know the XL4 is for digital cable only. I'm not 100% sure all of my channels are digital. There are still a few channels in the 2-70 range that are not offered in HD yet. My understanding was that many cable companies send out a digital version of their analog channels which cable boxes & cable cards tune to, in addition to the analog signal. I tuned to several of the low number cable channels, then went into the DVR diagnostics screen to check if it was analog or digital. So far, they all say "Modulation: QAM 256".
Am I looking in the right spot? That's what I want to see, right?
2) I already have Ethernet network drops in both rooms, which are connected to a separate switch, which is then connected to the router. (Helps keep TiVo network traffic separate from wireless/Internet traffic). If I understand correctly, the XL4 can act as a MOCA bridge. So, in theory, when the TiVo mini comes out, I could use the MOCA connection. My question is, which connection is better? I'm leaning towards using the Ethernet connection for the mini, and connect the cable line directly to the TV for those rare time I might (gasp) watch actual live tv. Thoughts?
3) If I bought the premiere 4 instead of the XL4 and upgraded the hard drive myself, would it be worth it? It looks like the 4 runs about $150 less than the XL, and 2TB drives run about $100. Sounds like I would lose THX and only save at most $50. Am I missing anything? Thoughts?
4) Are there any rumors about a new box coming out in 2013 other than the TiVo mini? I would hate to buy the XL4 then find out if I would have waited a couple months, I could have gotten a 6 tuner box, or one that has additional hardware/features.
Sorry this is such a long post, but I have tried to answer any "follow-up" questions in advance. Thanks for taking the time to read my post, and any replies.