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Old 02-15-2015, 05:23 PM   #1
21364guy
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Replace TiVo HD with Mini ?

When we got our Roamio in 2013 I moved our TiVo HD, now over 7 years old, to the basement where it replaced a Fios DVR. But 8 tuners is really overkill for us, and I'm paying an extra $5 for the cablecard in the TiVo HD. Would the TiVo Mini give us a noticeably better experience than the TiVo HD? For instance yesterday we wanted to watch something that involved a transfer from the Roamio and the transfer wasn't able to go fast enough to let us skip all the commercials. Clearly this is a case where Mini would do better. But I'm just trying to get a sense overall of whether I'd really be happier in day-to-day use with the Mini.

And just to make it slightly more complicated, I'm feeding two AVRs at the moment. So I'm making use of the HDMI outputs in one case and the component/optical outputs for the other. It looks the Mini will give simultaneous output but I need to buy some proprietary break-out cables? And I'll lose the optical audio and instead need to use analog RCAs? Overall that's probably fine because the second AVR is used less critically, with just a 3.1 setup. So I could simply use Dolby PLII processing and be pretty happy.

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Old 02-15-2015, 06:43 PM   #2
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The Mini will give you a much, much better experience than the TiVoHD. Unless you want to switch back and forth between viewing live channels, each with a buffer. Since the Mini is not designed to do that.

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Old 02-15-2015, 06:56 PM   #3
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Personally, I would repurpose the TiVo HD as OTA-only (assuming the HD has lifetime service and still saving money on the cable card) and use Mini(s) to send content from your Roamio anywhere around your house you want. Right now TiVo is only promising no service fees on new Mini activations until May 2015, so keep an eye on that.

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Old 02-16-2015, 02:47 AM   #4
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So the Mini does sounds like a good plan. Did I get it right that it can service two rooms: one by HDMI and one by component plus RCA output?

Finally I'm just wondering about other client devices. Is it likely that Roku or similar boxes could provide Mini-like functionality in the near future?

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Old 02-16-2015, 10:02 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by 21364guy View Post
So the Mini does sounds like a good plan. Did I get it right that it can service two rooms: one by HDMI and one by component plus RCA output?

Finally I'm just wondering about other client devices. Is it likely that Roku or similar boxes could provide Mini-like functionality in the near future?
It is possible you may run into HDCP issues if you are using both HDMI and component simultaneously. This may be alleviated with a cheap HDMI switch. However if you aren't running into this with your current TivoHD you might not see it.

Personally I would probably just get a second mini for the other location. Especially given how much tivo charges for the break out cables.

While it is technically possible we might see a Roku client in the future, I wouldn't hold my breath. There is an plugin for Plex that you can use, video is pretty good, but I find the transport controls. FF/RWD don't work. This would give you basic access to your Roamio on the Roku https://github.com/tivoguy/TiVoToGo.bundle

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Old 02-16-2015, 11:12 AM   #6
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"near future", no. Future, perhaps.

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Old 02-16-2015, 11:14 AM   #7
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I got a TiVo hd running in my bedroom and I am going to replace with a new TiVo mini v2.

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Old 02-16-2015, 12:24 PM   #8
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Thanks folks. I will pick up a Mini v2 in the near future.

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Old 02-16-2015, 08:43 PM   #9
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We still have one HD running and we plan to keep it until it dies. It is an extra $4/mo, but with a Roamio basic and two minis, we just thought it would be better to keep another Tivo going.

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Old 02-17-2015, 12:00 AM   #10
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Yeah, I guess I need to decide whether to keep it as a spare or ebay it. I have to say that after owning 4 TiVos, their hardware holds up very well.

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Old 02-18-2015, 08:54 AM   #11
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You can move the Roamio to the basement and drive 2 televisions with its builtin ports.

We do all of our primary watching with minis.

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Old 02-19-2015, 12:28 AM   #12
21364guy
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You can move the Roamio to the basement and drive 2 televisions with its builtin ports.

We do all of our primary watching with minis.
Thanks, that's a very good point. I'll just have to see if the channel changing delay is acceptable to the rest of the family as they watch more live TV upstairs. Myself, I really only use the basement gear–*projector and TV.

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Old 02-19-2015, 10:10 AM   #13
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I just replaced my TiVo hd with a TiVo mini, I feel bad for unplugging my TiVo hd for the last time.

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Old 02-19-2015, 11:34 AM   #14
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I just replaced my TiVo hd with a TiVo mini, I feel bad for unplugging my TiVo hd for the last time.
That feeling will quickly subside. Love the Mini. Want at least one more!

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Old 02-20-2015, 05:03 AM   #15
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I have just gone through the same thought process. I have 4 Tivos - A series 3DT - HD - Premier and I just got a new Romeo Plus a month ago. I was planning on ordering a mini to go with my new Romeo so I could avoid some of the cost of cable cards and such. However - exactly 30 days after getting my new Romeo - the HD in it crashed and I had to send it back in and wait for them to get it before they would send me out a replacement or give them a $350 deposit. I opted to go without for a week since I have other Tivos in my home. But while it was gone - it got me thinking about the Mini Option - If I get a new Mini and my Romeo fails - what will I have to watch? I called Tivo today to ask them today about this thought - and this is what the sales rep told me - well - that can happen - I asked him about the price of the Mini - and he told me "They are $149 but if you want one for less - you can purchase them on Amazon"

The point of this is - Beware that if you replace your older units with a Mini - and get rid of your older units - you may end up with no TV at all - & Tivo customer service has gone way downhill in the 8 years I have been a customer with them.

In the end - I did order a new mini off of the Tivo website today - Amazon was only a few dollars cheaper - I figured I might be better off getting better customer service if I ordered it directly from Tivo - I know - I'm a sucker!

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Old 02-20-2015, 08:31 PM   #16
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The Mini will give you a much, much better experience than the TiVoHD. Unless you want to switch back and forth between viewing live channels, each with a buffer. Since the Mini is not designed to do that.
^this.

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Originally Posted by series5orpremier View Post
Personally, I would repurpose the TiVo HD as OTA-only (assuming the HD has lifetime service and still saving money on the cable card) and use Mini(s) to send content from your Roamio anywhere around your house you want. Right now TiVo is only promising no service fees on new Mini activations until May 2015, so keep an eye on that.
^and this. Having OTA available is always a good option. It probably uses another $5 worth of power though, depending on the OP's location and power rates... At least it would cut the CableCard out.

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Old 02-20-2015, 10:44 PM   #17
21364guy
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All good points. I think I'll keep the HD unit as a backup, though we honestly have no good OTA reception in my area. I'll just power it down and store it in case the Roamio dies or starts to go downhill. My past experience with TiVo has included one bad modem and maybe 3 hard drive failures–this is over many years and with several devices so not too bad in my opinion. And the HD failures were always slow degrades–audio dropping out, stuttering, etc, never a complete crash. So I was able to replace/upgrade them myself and generally save the recordings.

So I could always pull out the HD unit if needed and swap the cable card, transfer recordings and such in a pinch.

On the other hand I already have a couple spare series 1 in storage so I better be careful about how many I end up with!


Last edited by 21364guy : 02-20-2015 at 10:51 PM.
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