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Old 11-05-2013, 11:58 PM   #1
ADent
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WTB: TiVo HD w/lifetime

I am about to cut the cord and want an OTA recording solution.

Looks like the sweet spot is a TiVo HD. I am looking to pay $200 shipped. This is a couple of bucks less than they run on eBay, but selling directly cuts out some eBay fees.

This should be a TiVoHD in good working order.

I would consider a Premiere for an extra $50 or an original S3 for $50 less.

PM me offers.
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Old 11-06-2013, 01:09 AM   #2
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For OTA only the original S3 is actually better then the HD. It has better tuners and more HDD space then a stock HD. Plus it has the OLED screen and a nicer looking case. The only down side to it was it required two CableCARDs, but that doesn't matter if you're going OTA.
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Old 11-06-2013, 01:24 AM   #3
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Quote:
I am about to cut the cord and want an OTA recording solution.

Looks like the sweet spot is a TiVo HD. I am looking to pay $200 shipped. This is a couple of bucks less than they run on eBay, but selling directly cuts out some eBay fees.

This should be a TiVoHD in good working order.

I would consider a Premiere for an extra $50 or an original S3 for $50 less.

PM me offers.

The original S3s, which were much more expensive new than the HDs, still go for more than the HDs, all things being equal, and they're much more difficult to find available to buy, judging by Craigslist postings around the country.

They're also more desireable from the "you can move the crypto chip to another 648 motherboard to keep the lifetime sub alive" standpoint.

Starting with the HD and HD XL, no more separate crypto chip.
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Old 11-06-2013, 02:22 AM   #4
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I thought the original S3s are having power supply problems and figured the newer HDs would be a bit better.

I see quite a few prefer the TiVoHD over Premiere for OTA (though not universally) - sounds like the original S3 had the best tuner?
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Old 11-06-2013, 03:55 AM   #5
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Just to be clear both the original OLED unit and the TiVoHD units are considered S3 units, so be careful what you read. People tend to use the terms interchangeably and incorrectly at times.

ALL S3 units have the potential for power supply issues. So that's something you have to beware of no matter what. Although the power supply for the TiVoHD is slightly cheaper to replace if you buy from Weaknees.

It's my understanding that the OLED S3 has slightly better OTA tuners, but either unit will be better then the Premiere. Also the OLED came standard with a 250GB HDD while the HD only had a 160GB, so if they're not upgraded you'll get nearly double the space with the OLED.
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Old 11-06-2013, 06:36 AM   #6
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Quote:
For OTA only the original S3 is actually better then the HD.
Yes.

Cable is interesting; in my case the HD is better. A few weeks ago my cable company took a bunch of channels out of their normal packages and put them into an additional cost package that they made unavailable to cable card users (customers can get them only with cable company boxes). Two of the best of those channels still come in on the HD, while the Series 3 box shows "Searching for signal on: Cable In."
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Old 11-06-2013, 12:03 PM   #7
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Yes.

Cable is interesting; in my case the HD is better. A few weeks ago my cable company took a bunch of channels out of their normal packages and put them into an additional cost package that they made unavailable to cable card users (customers can get them only with cable company boxes). Two of the best of those channels still come in on the HD, while the Series 3 box shows "Searching for signal on: Cable In."
That's actually not possible. Cable companies are required by law to use CableCARDs inside their own boxes specifically so they can't have exclusive channels like that. Are you sure the cards in your S3 are paired correctly? If they're not paired then you'll still be able to access unencrypted channels, but not any encrypted channels. Do you have a tuning adapter? A lot of cable companies are starting to deploy SDV which their boxes can just do, but with a TiVo you'll need a device called a tuning adapter to access those channels. The only other thing they could do that would block your S3 units is switch to H.264 encoding. But if that were the case neither one would be able to tune the channels.
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Old 11-06-2013, 06:34 PM   #8
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That's actually not possible. Cable companies are required by law to use CableCARDs inside their own boxes specifically so they can't have exclusive channels like that. Are you sure the cards in your S3 are paired correctly? If they're not paired then you'll still be able to access unencrypted channels, but not any encrypted channels. Do you have a tuning adapter? A lot of cable companies are starting to deploy SDV which their boxes can just do, but with a TiVo you'll need a device called a tuning adapter to access those channels. The only other thing they could do that would block your S3 units is switch to H.264 encoding. But if that were the case neither one would be able to tune the channels.
Once again I have checked behind the ears. Dry.

Cable companies don't care what you believe to be "actually not possible." This is a whole new service that has nothing to do with FCC 76.1205 (b or c). In their view. And the FCC has no interest in cable cards any more. If any kind of argument can be made by the cable company to seemingly get around them, a few channels at a time, the FCC is fine with it.

The only relevance in this digression to the subject of Tivo s3 vs. Tivo HD tuners is my observation that the HD _seems_ to have a wider bandwidth range.
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Old 11-06-2013, 10:16 PM   #9
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I thought the original S3s are having power supply problems and figured the newer HDs would be a bit better.

I see quite a few prefer the TiVoHD over Premiere for OTA (though not universally) - sounds like the original S3 had the best tuner?
The Series 2s and all three Series 3 models are all potential "capacitor plague" victims.

I've fixed 2 or 3 S2 supplies so far, and one S3 HD supply about a year ago in which I found another bulging cap the other day so I've hit it twice, and I'm getting ready to do one from an original S3 I got a good deal on.

It's really not all that difficult if you know by which end not to pick up a hot soldering iron or gun.
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Old 11-06-2013, 10:27 PM   #10
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That's actually not possible. Cable companies are required by law to use CableCARDs inside their own boxes specifically so they can't have exclusive channels like that. Are you sure the cards in your S3 are paired correctly? If they're not paired then you'll still be able to access unencrypted channels, but not any encrypted channels. Do you have a tuning adapter? A lot of cable companies are starting to deploy SDV which their boxes can just do, but with a TiVo you'll need a device called a tuning adapter to access those channels. The only other thing they could do that would block your S3 units is switch to H.264 encoding. But if that were the case neither one would be able to tune the channels.
If those channels are at the upper end of the frequency range and the HD tuners have a little bit wider bandpass than the OLED S3 tuners, then it is possible.

Once upon a time when everything was analog and channels were actually within the 6MHz slot assigned to their channel number and not remapped, there were some "cable ready" TVs and VCRs that went up to channel 36 (so TWC moved CNN in our area to 47 to force people to rent boxes from them anyway), but I had a nominally only up to 36 VCR where I could manually fine tune each "preset" and could get up to channel 39, where USA was, because the local oscillator had a little extra bandwidth and could heterodyne it down to the IF frequency.
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Old 11-07-2013, 01:04 AM   #11
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Once again I have checked behind the ears. Dry.

Cable companies don't care what you believe to be "actually not possible." This is a whole new service that has nothing to do with FCC 76.1205 (b or c). In their view. And the FCC has no interest in cable cards any more. If any kind of argument can be made by the cable company to seemingly get around them, a few channels at a time, the FCC is fine with it.

The only relevance in this digression to the subject of Tivo s3 vs. Tivo HD tuners is my observation that the HD _seems_ to have a wider bandwidth range.
You said your cable company did something to make channels "unavailable to CableCARD users". That's what I said was not possible, and it's not. Now putting channels on a higher frequency that your S3 TiVo can't tune is a different story. That has nothing to do with CableCARDs and everything to do with the QAM tuners used in those TiVos. I remember this coming up once before a few years back and IIRC only the Premiere+ units have tuners which can handle the frequencies used on a 1GHz system. I think the S3 units were capped at 800Mhz. I'm betting if you had a Premiere or Roamio it would be able to get those new channels just fine even though they still use a CableCARD.

P.S. There is no need to get snarky about it. I had no idea what your knowledge level was and was simply trying to help you out so that maybe you could investigate the issue further rather then just assuming our cable company did something nefarious to specifically exclude CableCARD users.
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Old 11-12-2013, 12:06 AM   #12
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I got a local reply and bought a TiVo HD last Saturday in person. I paid a little more than I requested, but still less than the going rate on eBay and got a nice unit that had been parked for awhile.

It burped last night (blinking green light) - but I think/I hope it had to do with the software upgrade it got last night. A power cycle fixed it.

Now I just need to get a decent antenna - I think I will build a 4 bay bow.
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