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Old 02-27-2013, 06:22 PM   #1
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Help me decide on a new Premier 4 now or a Premier "5"

I am coming to Tivo as a long time Comcast DVR user. I've just gotten more and more dissatisfied with the limitations imposed and I'm ready to get a Tivo. I also tape 4 programs at a time several times a week and I'm tired of having conflicts all the time.

My question now is whether to buy now or wait to see if new hardware will be released in the next few months based on the FCC filings. Since I've never really had a Tivo, I have read people discussing how slow the new Premiere 4/4XLs are as compared to the Premier with 2 tuners. Exactly what functions are slow? Could you please speculate as to what other functions the new "5" would have? Is there any chance that a newer Tivo would have wireless integrated into the system?

I already have a Apple TV, so I'm not interested in duplicating Netflix/Hulu or any of the other connection available. Thanks in advance for all your advice.
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:16 PM   #2
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There is no series 5 yet. And if there is an announcement, when will it come, in one month or ten months? When will it go on sale, 2013 or 2014? There will always be a newer device coming, it's just a matter of when. Get the Series 4 box now with lifetime, and when a series 5 box comes out, sell the S4 to cover most of the cost of the S5. And in the meantime you are able to use and enjoy a Series 4 box instead of waiting for a Series 5 box that may or may not materialize sometime this year.
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:32 PM   #3
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I don't notice any speed difference between my 2-tuner Premieres and my 4-tuner Premiere.

If you don't need OTA reception, I wouldn't hesitate to get a 4-tuner box and a couple of minis when they come out next week.
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:34 PM   #4
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Signs point to a 6-tuner box later in the year. We don't know if this will qualify as a Series 5 or just a slightly updated Series 4, but that's the only data we have.

Performance has improved a little bit on the 4-tuner boxes over the last year, but my primary performance issues have been in general usage -- slight delays in menu transitions, navigation and remote lag. I don't want to overstate it either... the delays aren't that bad. But we tend to be a demanding audience and we like things snappy.

The apps on the box however, like Netflix, are slow to load and crashy regardless of which Premiere you go with. Since you have an Apple TV, then this doesn't matter too much.

All that being said, I would still prefer a Tivo over the cableco's DVR.

There is also the Tivo Mini coming out (as soon as next week) which is an extender for the 4-tuner boxes. They can playback your recordings and also stream live TV from the host Tivo. This may help you forego "additional outlet fees" from your cableco.

It's believed future boxes will have integrated transcoding (ability to stream/copy shows to tablets and smart phones) but we don't know if this will be something in the upcoming 6-tuner box or not. At the moment this can be done with a Tivo accessory called the Stream.

I'm going to guess there won't be integrated wireless support. Tivo's adopting MoCA for their networking, which is a better-performing solution all around.

Having said all that, unless waiting for a 6-tuner box is of particular interest to you, I think a 4-tuner "Premiere 4" or "XL4" are good choices.
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:40 PM   #5
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With the Mini been expected to be released on March 6th, I'd hold off on making any decision until then. The day would be a good day for Tivo to announce what and when they are going to release the next gen box. Of course that date could slip...or Tivo might just want to focus on the Mini on the 6th....who knows.
aaronwt does give some good advice.
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:07 PM   #6
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The "HD menus" on Tivos are still fairly slow.. But really, even that is still far better functionality wise than what I've seen of cable boxes.

Even I, who don't like laggy things, have stuck with the HD menus (but keep thinking of switching back, and sometimes have for periods of time), because I like some of the functions, even though I miss some things missing from the SD UI.. (Not relevant to the original poster, but not being able to CHANNEL UP/DOWN basically ANYWHERE is one of the biggest things missing -- i.e. going from the details of one entry in various menus to another..)
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Old 02-28-2013, 12:54 AM   #7
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I'm know there is no Premiere 5. I was merely using that as shorthand for any new Tivo that might be coming down the pike. I should have written that I have no interest buying a Tivo now and then going to the hassle of trying to sell it a few months from now. That kind of trading freaks me out slightly and I don't understand/feel comfortable with either Craig's List or Ebay. I have a brand new Tivo HD still in the box that I won a few years ago, because I have no idea how to market it.

Likewise, as of right now, I'm not going to get lifetime service. I've never had a Tivo and I have no idea if I will love it or hate it, so I don't feel comfortable spending $400-500 for programming on an experiment. Don't have a problem buying the unit, but paying up front for service makes me nervous.

I thought there might be some significance in the special Tivo is running right now for a Premiere 4 and a Stream for $280. I thought perhaps this was signalling Tivo getting rid of excess inventory in anticipation of a new product, but I'm not as Tivo savvy as the rest of you. I am very interested in getting a Stream, so this is a very tempting for me. We have 3 DVRs in our house currently and I expect to continue to have 3. The Mini isn't going to be an option for us unless we get 2 6 tuners in the future with a Mini.

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Old 02-28-2013, 07:48 AM   #8
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I'm know there is no Premiere 5. I was merely using that as shorthand for any new Tivo that might be coming down the pike. I should have written that I have no interest buying a Tivo now and then going to the hassle of trying to sell it a few months from now. That kind of trading freaks me out slightly and I don't understand/feel comfortable with either Craig's List or Ebay. I have a brand new Tivo HD still in the box that I won a few years ago, because I have no idea how to market it.

Likewise, as of right now, I'm not going to get lifetime service. I've never had a Tivo and I have no idea if I will love it or hate it, so I don't feel comfortable spending $400-500 for programming on an experiment. Don't have a problem buying the unit, but paying up front for service makes me nervous.

I thought there might be some significance in the special Tivo is running right now for a Premiere 4 and a Stream for $280. I thought perhaps this was signalling Tivo getting rid of excess inventory in anticipation of a new product, but I'm not as Tivo savvy as the rest of you. I am very interested in getting a Stream, so this is a very tempting for me. We have 3 DVRs in our house currently and I expect to continue to have 3. The Mini isn't going to be an option for us unless we get 2 6 tuners in the future with a Mini.
The reality is the people who know when TiVo is going to release updated hardware or run specials are never going to post that information on this forum until after it is released to the general public.

This forum is a good place for existing TiVo owners to monitor as any "deals" for existing owners end up being talked about here pretty quick, but as a non-TiVo owner you are not going to get any deal that isn't being offered to the general public on TiVo.com.

So unless you have a friend who is a TiVo owner and would be willing to buy equipment and re-sell it to you (which is fine with TiVo) then just monitor TiVo.com and if an offer comes along that you like buy.

Regarding Service and re-selling TiVos. If you are unwilling to buy lifetime service and unwilling to resell your hardware to upgrade that is your business but it also gives you a near 100% assurance that service is going to cost you more over time and you are going to pay more to upgrade equipment.
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Old 02-28-2013, 12:01 PM   #9
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I'm know there is no Premiere 5. I was merely using that as shorthand for any new Tivo that might be coming down the pike. I should have written that I have no interest buying a Tivo now and then going to the hassle of trying to sell it a few months from now. That kind of trading freaks me out slightly and I don't understand/feel comfortable with either Craig's List or Ebay. I have a brand new Tivo HD still in the box that I won a few years ago, because I have no idea how to market it.

Likewise, as of right now, I'm not going to get lifetime service. I've never had a Tivo and I have no idea if I will love it or hate it, so I don't feel comfortable spending $400-500 for programming on an experiment. Don't have a problem buying the unit, but paying up front for service makes me nervous.

I thought there might be some significance in the special Tivo is running right now for a Premiere 4 and a Stream for $280. I thought perhaps this was signalling Tivo getting rid of excess inventory in anticipation of a new product, but I'm not as Tivo savvy as the rest of you. I am very interested in getting a Stream, so this is a very tempting for me. We have 3 DVRs in our house currently and I expect to continue to have 3. The Mini isn't going to be an option for us unless we get 2 6 tuners in the future with a Mini.
I completely understand your reluctance to buy lifetime service. I was in the same place when I got my first Tivo. I also understand your reluctance to resell on ebay, and that method may not be right for everyone (I have 2 perfectly good S2 Tivos I'm not using anymore and still haven't sold yet for the same reason.)

What I did was pay the yearly subscription rate, which is discounted over the monthly price and wasn't quite as much a $ commitment up front as a lifetime. I don't know if they still offer the yearly plans, but it might be worth a phone call to Tivo to find out. (When I upgraded to a TivoHD, I decided to buy lifetime because by that time I decided I couldn't live without Tivo).

Once you try Tivo, you will probably really love the way it figures out how to download all the shows you want and prevent conflicts.
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Old 03-02-2013, 08:20 AM   #10
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You can buy it with monthly service and switch to lifetime within the 30 day return window at no additional cost over buyin lifetime up front. Gives you time to experience tivo.
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Old 03-03-2013, 11:09 AM   #11
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You want lifetime. The other plans are for suckers who can't do math. Just figure on the TiVo costing the price of the hardware + service, and forget there even is a monthly fee option.
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Old 03-03-2013, 11:09 AM   #12
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With the Mini been expected to be released on March 6th, I'd hold off on making any decision until then. The day would be a good day for Tivo to announce what and when they are going to release the next gen box. Of course that date could slip...or Tivo might just want to focus on the Mini on the 6th....who knows.
aaronwt does give some good advice.
I'd agree there. I feel like a Mini and a 6-tuner box combined would be a way to relaunch TiVo as a whole-home DVR solution for cable.
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Old 03-03-2013, 02:26 PM   #13
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I'd agree there. I feel like a Mini and a 6-tuner box combined would be a way to relaunch TiVo as a whole-home DVR solution for cable.
But they do not listen to us! I guess everyone thinks March 6th is the big day, but I wonder how smart ver 1.0 of a Mini would be. Without a disk drive, I guess updates will be tricky.

OH, Hartford-New Haven is not too specific. I am from Hartford but our first House was in Milford.
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Old 03-03-2013, 02:42 PM   #14
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Without a disk drive, I guess updates will be tricky.
Yeah, my various iPhones and Apple TVs have no disk drive, and none of them have ever received an update because of it.


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Old 03-03-2013, 05:08 PM   #15
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Without a disk drive, I guess updates will be tricky.
The Mini doesn't have a hard drive, but it does have internal storage. Upgrades to the Mini will occur just like they do now on the standard Premiere. The only difference is that it wont have additional storage for actual video data.

As for the original question... I don't think we'll see any new Premiere units until September, at the soonest. Although if I were in the market I might hold off a week just to see if there are any deals that come along with the launch of the Mini.
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Old 03-03-2013, 07:27 PM   #16
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But they do not listen to us! I guess everyone thinks March 6th is the big day, but I wonder how smart ver 1.0 of a Mini would be. Without a disk drive, I guess updates will be tricky.

OH, Hartford-New Haven is not too specific. I am from Hartford but our first House was in Milford.
I'm in Groton. Hartford-New Haven is my DMA. I moved from the very edge of the NYC SV part into the Providence-New Bedford / Boston SV area however. Everyone not from CT or RI is going "WTF is he talking about?".

We'll see. If they're smart, they'll launch of bunch of stuff at once.

The Mini probably has a couple GB of flask storage. Even the most basic devices nowadays have a couple of GB of flash storage, it's so cheap. Aren't the Premieres flash-based for the OS and system caches as well? I am only really familiar with the S2 days, where the box needed a hard drive imaged with TiVo software.
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Old 03-04-2013, 04:28 PM   #17
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But they do not listen to us! I guess everyone thinks March 6th is the big day, but I wonder how smart ver 1.0 of a Mini would be. Without a disk drive, I guess updates will be tricky.
You don't have to wonder, we have reports from an actual user who get their mini from thier cableco.
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Old 03-04-2013, 06:05 PM   #18
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You don't have to wonder, we have reports from an actual user who get their mini from thier cableco.
OK. I guess we will wait for Wednesday as a whole lot of posts say it will be available then. They even suggest bundles with 4 Tuner P4's. What happens if 3/6/2013 comes and goes with nothing from TIVO?
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Old 03-04-2013, 11:12 PM   #19
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You want lifetime. The other plans are for suckers who can't do math. Just figure on the TiVo costing the price of the hardware + service, and forget there even is a monthly fee option.
For those of you who swear by lifetime service, are you suggesting that even for folks who like to upgrade their equipment regularly (like me) still come out ahead with lifetime because of the resale value of their equipment?
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Old 03-04-2013, 11:19 PM   #20
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For those of you who swear by lifetime service, are you suggesting that even for folks who like to upgrade their equipment regularly (like me) still come out ahead with lifetime because of the resale value of their equipment?
I know I have. Because a TiVo with lifetime service has a high resale value. I upgrade my TiVos everytime a new model is released.
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Old 03-05-2013, 01:03 AM   #21
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For those of you who swear by lifetime service, are you suggesting that even for folks who like to upgrade their equipment regularly (like me) still come out ahead with lifetime because of the resale value of their equipment?
If you are willing to sell on E-Bay and keep the packing and box of your new TiVo in a safe place Lifetime is well worth the first upfront cost, I started with a series 1 at a lifetime cost of $199, when I upgraded some 3 years later after the 540040 came out I sold my Series 1 for a net of $300 (lifetime then was then $299) I had the Series 1 TiVo about 3 years, the Series 2 hardware cost was $200 + you got a $150 rebate from TiVo when you activated, so after 3 years of use I paid $50 to upgrade my TiVo, with monthly I would have paid 36 month at $10/month or $360, that $160 more than I paid for just the Lifetime, so you do the math. My last TiVo purchase was the TP-4 750500 at a cost with lifetime of $600 (some people got that deal for $550) and sold my TP on E-Bay for a net of about $490, so this time it cost me about $110 to upgrade. I do keep all the accessories new as I don't need them for the new TiVo (I use a Harmony remote) and keep the box and all the packing so the buyer looks like there getting a new TiVo (I sell it on E-Bay as used).
Obviously I had to give up some time to do all this, and some people don't have the time or inclination to deal with E-Bay, so for them monthly may be a better deal, but with over 3 years between new TiVo units maybe not.
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:49 AM   #22
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A 6 tuner model is a good bet. Chipset support 6 tuners are available and cable systems are introducing 6 tuner models.The problem is you don't know how long before a new model is introduced. Initially the price of any new model might be high.

I think people who already have a working S3 unit and are considering upgrading might wait. People who aren't happy with their current DVR, or who don't have a DVR, maybe not.

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Old 03-05-2013, 02:07 PM   #23
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I'm in Groton. Hartford-New Haven is my DMA. I moved from the very edge of the NYC SV part into the Providence-New Bedford / Boston SV area however. Everyone not from CT or RI is going "WTF is he talking about?".

We'll see. If they're smart, they'll launch of bunch of stuff at once.

The Mini probably has a couple GB of flask storage. Even the most basic devices nowadays have a couple of GB of flash storage, it's so cheap. Aren't the Premieres flash-based for the OS and system caches as well? I am only really familiar with the S2 days, where the box needed a hard drive imaged with TiVo software.
I think the Nautilus is in Groton now. We went there a while ago. Well, I went to the OLD Weaver HS in Hartford. My wife is from East Hartford and my sisters are still near there!

Anyway, the current bundle with the Stream and MoCA expires next Monday. I wonder if they are going to have a new bundle with the Mini?
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Old 03-05-2013, 06:30 PM   #24
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For those of you who swear by lifetime service, are you suggesting that even for folks who like to upgrade their equipment regularly (like me) still come out ahead with lifetime because of the resale value of their equipment?
Yes. It's a better bet all around. You could also cycle equipment through, using some of the older stuff on other TVs, without adding monthly fees (other than electric).

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I think the Nautilus is in Groton now. We went there a while ago. Well, I went to the OLD Weaver HS in Hartford. My wife is from East Hartford and my sisters are still near there!

Anyway, the current bundle with the Stream and MoCA expires next Monday. I wonder if they are going to have a new bundle with the Mini?
Yup, 571-boat is up the river at the museum. It's pretty cool in general, but I find it boring, as I've been on the 688-class and 774-class boats.
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Old 03-11-2013, 11:35 PM   #25
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A 6 tuner model is a good bet. Chipset support 6 tuners are available and cable systems are introducing 6 tuner models.The problem is you don't know how long before a new model is introduced. Initially the price of any new model might be high.

I think people who already have a working S3 unit and are considering upgrading might wait. People who aren't happy with their current DVR, or who don't have a DVR, maybe not.
Regardless of how many tuners the TiVo could have, it's dependent on the MSO to have equipment that support all six tuners. For example a lot of CableCARDs are capable of supporting up to six video streams, however if the MSO headend or CableCARD firmware/software isn't configured for it, there is going to be limitations. The Cisco PKM 908 supports up to 8 streams, but don't know of anyone implementing it anywhere yet. http://www.cisco.com/en/US/prod/coll...l_28628_01.pdf
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Old 03-12-2013, 08:55 AM   #26
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An eight tuner tiVo would be sweet. A 4TB drive and eight tuners along with some Mini TiVos would be a great whole home solution. Of course I only expect to have six tuners with the next TiVo, which is borderline enough for me.
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Old 03-12-2013, 02:27 PM   #27
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That's cool. I thought there was some limitation to the CableCARD spec that kept it at 6 tuners max? Guess not.

6 tuners is more then enough for me. 4 is actually enough for me but 6 would be nice so I could pad everything without concern. But I could see families needing more. 8 tuners would give a family of four 2 tuners each, which would be like everyone having their own TiVo.

Although if TiVo is going to expand into 6 or 8 tuner units I think they really need to work on user profiles. Having everything thrown into one My Shows list, and keeping track of who's watched what, is a bit chaotic for a family of 4.
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Old 03-12-2013, 04:17 PM   #28
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An eight tuner tiVo would be sweet. A 4TB drive and eight tuners along with some Mini TiVos would be a great whole home solution. Of course I only expect to have six tuners with the next TiVo, which is borderline enough for me.
My only issue with 1 TIVO and more than 4 tuners is that we are putting all our shows on 1 unit. If I have 2 P4's and a Mini, at least I could keep 1 Tivo's worth of shows if one HDD failed!
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Old 03-12-2013, 04:43 PM   #29
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Risk vs reward. There is more risk in putting all your shows on one box, but there is also the reward of only having to manage the SP Manager and To Do List of one box and not having to remember which TiVo recorded which show when you're ready to watch.

I have owned TiVos for >13 years now and have had 2 hard drive failures in that time, both of which were slow enough that I realized what was happening and was able to transfer most of the shows off first. Plus it's just TV. Is there anything you've recorded on your TiVo that you couldn't get via other means if you had to? There are a half dozen legal services that offer TV shows for download or streaming or you can find almost anything via BitTorrent if you don't want to have to pay. Losing a hard drive in a TiVo would suck, but it's hardly the end of the world.
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Old 03-12-2013, 05:06 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Dan203 View Post
That's cool. I thought there was some limitation to the CableCARD spec that kept it at 6 tuners max? Guess not.
I thought the current cable card, and SDV tuner, specifications were "only" for 6 tuner support.

The fact that a PP "would like" 8 tuners doesn't mean current cable cards support 8 tuners. I don't see tivo releasing an OTA model with 8 tuners while only offering 6 tuner models for the exclusively digital cable models.
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