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Old 08-28-2013, 10:54 AM   #1
markwill
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What do I miss with a Tivo Mini

I am a long time Tivo HD user who just purchased a Roamio PLus ("out for delivery" at the time of writing ). Anyway, while looking forward to installing and starting to use my Roamio tonight, I am curious about the full extent which a Tivo Mini might be useful elsewhere.

Aside from the obvious issue of tuners (I'd tie one up while I am using a Mini, but that's not a factor for me at all right now), I am interested to know what features I WON'T get on a remote Mini (as compared to sitting in front of the TV with the Roamio itself). Assuming solid networking connectivity, what features would I forego, as compared to getting another Roamio?

Thanks.

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Old 08-28-2013, 11:17 AM   #2
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HMO extensions like pyTivo shares for network video, music and photos is the big one. They support most of the same OTT streaming vendors. You might consider a lifetime sub used Premiere unit instead of a mini if you have the space. There are plenty available for sale right now for not much more than the cost of a mini.
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Old 08-28-2013, 11:46 AM   #3
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HMO extensions like pyTivo shares for network video, music and photos is the big one. They support most of the same OTT streaming vendors. You might consider a lifetime sub used Premiere unit instead of a mini if you have the space. There are plenty available for sale right now for not much more than the cost of a mini.
Thank you. We have no interest in any "local network" content (video, music, etc). We do want access to all cable channels, Internet services (Hulu, Netflix, etc) and it seems like we're all set, based on your answer.

By the way, just to double check would XFinity On Demand be available from a Mini, if the Roamio is configured to support that?

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Old 08-28-2013, 11:49 AM   #4
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You don't lose much but you do gain the savings of returning a cable card. I have Fios and they just raised their cable card rates to $5 a card.

Off topic but $5 a card is nuts. These things probably cost the cable company no more than $100 (probably less). I've had the same 2 cards from Verizon for about 4 years. At the old $4 rate, I've probably paid them about $384 for these 2 cable cards. I wish I could just buy them instead of paying $5 a month.
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Old 08-28-2013, 12:22 PM   #5
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Really dual live buffers is the only thing. I just hooked up a Mini last night to my bedroom TV, in place of a 2 tuner Premiere, and it seemed to work pretty well. I didn't get to mess with it too much as it got late. I am not sure if the Mini will keep your buffer on a paused program if you hit the TiVo button on the remote to go to the main menu or not. It will automatically release the tuner it was using on the Roamio after a certain amount of time if it is not in use. Definitely a lot snappier than the Premiere I had up there. I don't really watch 2 shows at once in the bedroom, so the lack of 2 tuners doesn't really bother me. I got it at Best Buy, so I have 60 days to try it out...

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Old 08-28-2013, 12:25 PM   #6
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You don't lose much but you do gain the savings of returning a cable card. I have Fios and they just raised their cable card rates to $5 a card.

Off topic but $5 a card is nuts. These things probably cost the cable company no more than $100 (probably less). I've had the same 2 cards from Verizon for about 4 years. At the old $4 rate, I've probably paid them about $384 for these 2 cable cards. I wish I could just buy them instead of paying $5 a month.
I totally agree with this. That is another reason I bit the bullet and ordered a Pro at WalMart (setup for 9/4 store delivery) and 3 Minis (Amazon) by Friday.

I am hoping this reduces me to one M card, but I will have to see. Has anyone gone from a Premiere or TivoHD to Roamio Pro or otherwise on Verizon yet? Can I just swap the cable cards from one of the TivoHD units? Or take the one from the Premiere?
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Old 08-28-2013, 12:37 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by y2jdmbfan View Post
Really dual live buffers is the only thing. I just hooked up a Mini last night to my bedroom TV, in place of a 2 tuner Premiere, and it seemed to work pretty well. I didn't get to mess with it too much as it got late. I am not sure if the Mini will keep your buffer on a paused program if you hit the TiVo button on the remote to go to the main menu or not. It will automatically release the tuner it was using on the Roamio after a certain amount of time if it is not in use. Definitely a lot snappier than the Premiere I had up there. I don't really watch 2 shows at once in the bedroom, so the lack of 2 tuners doesn't really bother me. I got it at Best Buy, so I have 60 days to try it out...

Y2J
But only 30 days on the TiVo service isn't it?
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Old 08-28-2013, 12:42 PM   #8
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The Mini can't handle or view Amazon downloads, at least right now. That means if you are used to 'buying' or renting episodes from Amazon in 1080p, you won't be able to download and view from the Mini television.

From what I understand, Amazon Instant Streaming will be available some time, but I believe that is 720p and is mostly their free catalog.
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Old 08-28-2013, 12:45 PM   #9
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The Mini can't handle or view Amazon downloads, at least right now. That means if you are used to 'buying' or renting episodes from Amazon in 1080p, you won't be able to download and view from the Mini television.

From what I understand, Amazon Instant Streaming will be available some time, but I believe that is 720p and is mostly their free catalog.
Once Amazon streaming is availabe then you should be able to view any purchased Amazon content as well. AT least if it's like other Amazon streaming devices.

Any content I've purchased from Amazon in the past, that I was able to download to my TiVos, I was also able to view on my devices that had Amazon streaming. Although it was only streamed in 720P instead of the 1080P that I typically got from the TiVo download.
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Old 08-28-2013, 01:13 PM   #10
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But only 30 days on the TiVo service isn't it?
Not exactly sure if they can lock you into a contract if you don't have the device any longer.
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Old 08-28-2013, 03:36 PM   #11
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Does the mini grab a tuner any time it's in use or just when live TV is viewed? In other words, if it is used only for streaming, will it have to grab a tuner?
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Old 08-28-2013, 04:12 PM   #12
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Only when viewing live TV. If you're watching a recorded show it does not require a tuner.
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Old 08-28-2013, 04:48 PM   #13
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Only when viewing live TV. If you're watching a recorded show it does not require a tuner.
Has anyone confirmed how dynamic tuning allocation actually works with a Roamio & Mini? Does it give you an message asking if you want to cancel a recording if you request live TV when all tuners are busy recording and/or providing live TV to other Minis?
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Old 08-28-2013, 04:57 PM   #14
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I think someone said that if all tuners are in use then it simply gives the Mini user an error, no option to cancel the recording.

What I haven't seen is anyone report what happens if the TiVo needs the tuner a Mini is already using. Does the Mini user just get booted? Or do they get an option to cancel the recording and hold on to the tuner? I planed to test this when I got mine.
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Old 08-30-2013, 01:17 PM   #15
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HMO extensions like pyTivo shares for network video, music and photos is the big one.
This is unfortunate. Are there plans to fix this?
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Old 08-30-2013, 01:20 PM   #16
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This is unfortunate. Are there plans to fix this?
The Mini has no internal storage, and pyTiVo is a program used to transfer videos, so there is really no way to fix it. I'm not sure why music and photos wouldn't work though. They should. But I've never tried so I can't confirm or deny that part.
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Old 08-30-2013, 02:14 PM   #17
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The Mini has no internal storage, and pyTiVo is a program used to transfer videos, so there is really no way to fix it.
I thought you could also stream (pull) with pyTiVo or do I misunderstand that?
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Old 08-30-2013, 02:55 PM   #18
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Pulling with pyTiVo is not streaming. It's copying the digital data from your computer to your TiVo hard drive.

There is an actual streaming program called Stream Baby, but I don't think that works with the Mini either. I think that's because the Mini has blocked all the old HME protocols, even for streaming. (that could be why music and photos don't work)
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Old 08-31-2013, 07:56 AM   #19
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You don't lose much but you do gain the savings of returning a cable card. I have Fios and they just raised their cable card rates to $5 a card.

Off topic but $5 a card is nuts. These things probably cost the cable company no more than $100 (probably less). I've had the same 2 cards from Verizon for about 4 years. At the old $4 rate, I've probably paid them about $384 for these 2 cable cards. I wish I could just buy them instead of paying $5 a month.
If you think $5/month is crazy, go to Comcast where I pay $9.95 per outlet. They do give a $2.50 credit back since I don't use their cable box, so $7.45 for a cable card essentially. I'm decided to get off the Comcast nickel and dime wagon and replacing my current set-up of 1 Comcast box and 3 Tivo Premiere's with lifetime and going with 1 Roamie Plus and 3 Tivo mini's (all with lifetime). I'll then be able to eliminate my Comcast additional outlet charges entirely as I'll have just one "outlet" being used with my new set-up. Comcast can go suck-it!
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Old 08-31-2013, 09:22 AM   #20
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If you think $5/month is crazy, go to Comcast where I pay $9.95 per outlet. They do give a $2.50 credit back since I don't use their cable box, so $7.45 for a cable card essentially. I'm decided to get off the Comcast nickel and dime wagon and replacing my current set-up of 1 Comcast box and 3 Tivo Premiere's with lifetime and going with 1 Roamie Plus and 3 Tivo mini's (all with lifetime). I'll then be able to eliminate my Comcast additional outlet charges entirely as I'll have just one "outlet" being used with my new set-up. Comcast can go suck-it!
The latest price breakdown I got with my last bill still says the first CableCARD is free. They still charge for it ($9.95) and give me a $2.50 credit for my own equipment.

They definitely love to price gouge.
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Old 08-31-2013, 09:28 AM   #21
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The latest price breakdown I got with my last bill still says the first CableCARD is free. They still charge for it ($9.95) and give me a $2.50 credit for my own equipment.

They definitely love to price gouge.
You are supposed to get your first outlet free (either their equipment or cablecard). If you can't get one outlet then you can't be using their service. For my set-up I have their box (since it was free - it didn't make sense to drop another $700 in Tivo equipment and lifetime sub). But the Mini now changes that and with dynamic tuner allocation in the Roamie that really changes the game cost wise so I can now just go with single Tivo box and return my Comcast equipment all together Or that's my plan. Ordered my Roamie and 3 Mini's from Amazon, should be here this week. Saw this post and wanted to confirm I really don't miss much by going to Mini's throughout my place.
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Old 08-31-2013, 11:02 AM   #22
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Pulling with pyTiVo is not streaming. It's copying the digital data from your computer to your TiVo hard drive.

There is an actual streaming program called Stream Baby, but I don't think that works with the Mini either. I think that's because the Mini has blocked all the old HME protocols, even for streaming. (that could be why music and photos don't work)
I can say that neither pyTivo nor Streambaby work on the Mini, which is rather disappointing. When my son wants to watch a show stored on our media server, he has to get up, go into the living room, ask if he can interrupt what is on the main TV, go to pyTivo and start the push. Then he goes back to his room and starts watching.

It would be so much nicer if he could start a push from the Mini.
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Old 08-31-2013, 11:42 AM   #23
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I can say that neither pyTivo nor Streambaby work on the Mini, which is rather disappointing. When my son wants to watch a show stored on our media server, he has to get up, go into the living room, ask if he can interrupt what is on the main TV, go to pyTivo and start the push. Then he goes back to his room and starts watching.

It would be so much nicer if he could start a push from the Mini.
But to be clear you can watch videos from the Mini once they have been pushed to the main Tivo, right?
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Old 08-31-2013, 12:11 PM   #24
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But to be clear you can watch videos from the Mini once they have been pushed to the main Tivo, right?
Yes.

What is it that people don't understand about the Mini not having storage?
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Old 08-31-2013, 12:17 PM   #25
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The Mini can't handle or view Amazon downloads, at least right now. That means if you are used to 'buying' or renting episodes from Amazon in 1080p, you won't be able to download and view from the Mini television.

From what I understand, Amazon Instant Streaming will be available some time, but I believe that is 720p and is mostly their free catalog.
Oh, that's an unexpected fly in the ointment. I buy Dr. Who episodes from Amazon and watch on my TiVo HD in the bedroom. That TiVo HD is now disconnected and a mini is configurating as I type. Bummer if I can't watch dr who anymore.
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Old 08-31-2013, 01:03 PM   #26
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What is it that people don't understand about the Mini not having storage?
I'm not sure why you think I don't understand that the Mini doesn't have storage. I just wanted to make sure that the Mini can play everything that is on the main Tivo especially videos that weren't recordings.
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Old 08-31-2013, 01:59 PM   #27
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I'm not sure why you think I don't understand that the Mini doesn't have storage. I just wanted to make sure that the Mini can play everything that is on the main Tivo especially videos that weren't recordings.
I was not referring to you.

Last edited by TC25D : 08-31-2013 at 02:06 PM.
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Old 08-31-2013, 07:24 PM   #28
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But to be clear you can watch videos from the Mini once they have been pushed to the main Tivo, right?
That's a good question. As noted above, yes. So far, we have found that anything in "My shows" is viewable on the Mini, regardless of how it got there.
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:55 AM   #29
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The one exception being shows downloaded from Amazon. Also I think there may be a problem with podcasts, but that might have gotten fixed. Can't remember for sure on that one.
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Old 09-01-2013, 01:42 PM   #30
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Based on info from another thread, it seems there is quite a bit the Mini can't do:

create WL (AR or std)
see the To-Do List
Manage SP

http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...74#post9794874
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