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Old 05-08-2014, 08:13 PM   #1
brewman
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Why buy a Stream?

This is not meant to be a troll; I really don't see the value of the Stream, and I'm wondering why people have purchased them over something like a Slingbox.

I have been a TiVo owner since the Series 1, and currently have a Romio, two Premiers, and two Series 3's so I'm definitely not anti-Tivo.

I guess the biggest question I have is the Stream's utility particularly when compared to a Slingbox. There's very few instances I can think of where I would want to use it while I'm in my home, and the only way to use if outside my home is to pre-download recorded content to my iPad is a PITA compared to a Slingbox.

So, why did you Stream owners buy the Stream?
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Old 05-08-2014, 10:40 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brewman View Post
This is not meant to be a troll; I really don't see the value of the Stream, and I'm wondering why people have purchased them over something like a Slingbox.

I have been a TiVo owner since the Series 1, and currently have a Romio, two Premiers, and two Series 3's so I'm definitely not anti-Tivo.

I guess the biggest question I have is the Stream's utility particularly when compared to a Slingbox. There's very few instances I can think of where I would want to use it while I'm in my home, and the only way to use if outside my home is to pre-download recorded content to my iPad is a PITA compared to a Slingbox.

So, why did you Stream owners buy the Stream?
Um, why do you say that you'd have to pre-download content? It can stream or download?

With how slick the Ipad app is, its so easy to use. Hopefully the snazzy update Tivo is promising finally rolls out Android streaming... and a new android app that's even close to the IOS version in quality, and performance. Additionally, other features like more controls over the quality of the video stream would be great.

I picked mine up because it was on clearance at one point at BB for <$80, so I figured what the heck... Yeah, its been a work in progress, but its been improving with stability and performance with software updates. It has worked well for me the few times I have streamed outside of home.

I technically have two streams right now... guess I should pull the plug on my stand-alone one, one of these days
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:15 AM   #3
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Having both (Stream built into Roamio Pro), I've come up with a few reasons:

STREAM ADVANTAGES
* If you have a very poor connection there is nothing you can do with Sling - it will look really bad or constantly stall making things unwatchable. With the Stream solution you can set it to download for a while to build up a buffer and then start watching and the quality will still be one of the 3 pre-defined quality levels.
* Again for poor connections the Slingbox 350 can take up to 20 seconds or so to respond to a button press while the iOS app response is pretty close to real time, so trick play is much more seamless compared to Sling.
* Slingbox requires you take control of the box, so that box can't be used by someone else while Sling is in use. With Stream solution everything happens in the background.
* With Slingbox you are restricted to whatever box it is connected to. With Stream solution any series 4 or higher unit on the network can be streamed from.
* No clunky IR blasters needed.

SLINGBOX ADVANTAGES
* Client can be any web browser vs Stream restricted currently to iOS mobile devices only
* Gives better video quality vs Stream streaming mode given the same low bandwidth
* Much higher quality captures possible (1080p H.264 up to 7 Mbps)
* Does not suffer from encoding issues and A/V sync issues which I have encountered with the Stream.
* Not restricted by any copy protection nonsense since it's using analog outputs
* Can be connected to any box that has analog outputs
* You can capture and save video unencrypted from any analog source

Bottom line is it's nice having both options available, but these days I try and use the Stream whenever possible first, with Sling as a backup option.
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:20 AM   #4
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There are people who only know the Tivo product line, when Tivo came out with the Stream it was targeted for are those who want a one vendor solution.

Some people don't want to add this, add that and do this and make that work. The general expectation is that a mobile streaming solution provided by Tivo would work with a TiVo (not saying it does or not just strictly commenting on the marketing strategy).

Stream may work for some, Slingbox is for others. At least there is a choice.
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Old 05-09-2014, 09:27 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lgnad View Post
Um, why do you say that you'd have to pre-download content? It can stream or download?

With how slick the Ipad app is, its so easy to use. Hopefully the snazzy update Tivo is promising finally rolls out Android streaming... and a new android app that's even close to the IOS version in quality, and performance. Additionally, other features like more controls over the quality of the video stream would be great.

I picked mine up because it was on clearance at one point at BB for <$80, so I figured what the heck... Yeah, its been a work in progress, but its been improving with stability and performance with software updates. It has worked well for me the few times I have streamed outside of home.

I technically have two streams right now... guess I should pull the plug on my stand-alone one, one of these days
I was under the impression that you can't stream outside your home network. Is that not true? If that is still true then as I said in my post the only way to watch content outside your home is to pre-download it to your iPad before you leave home.
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Old 05-09-2014, 09:31 AM   #6
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I guess if I could find one now for < $80 I'd probably get it too on the off chance that TiVo may actually live up to their promise some day and support streaming when you're not at home. If they solve that issue then the Stream is a big win IMHO over the Slingbox.
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Old 05-09-2014, 09:47 AM   #7
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I was under the impression that you can't stream outside your home network. Is that not true? If that is still true then as I said in my post the only way to watch content outside your home is to pre-download it to your iPad before you leave home.
Not true. OOH streaming went live around 9 months ago, so not sure why you had that impression.
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Old 05-09-2014, 11:24 AM   #8
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I bought a Stream when it was introduced to market. We are a two iphone and one iPad household. I could load shows to take to the office or to take on road trips. It was worth it to me for this feature alone, but the introduction of out of home streaming made it more usable. It works well when connected to two good networks. If you are sending a show over a meager network and receiving it over another meager network, things can be choppy.
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Old 05-09-2014, 01:38 PM   #9
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Not true. OOH streaming went live around 9 months ago, so not sure why you had that impression.
Perhaps the FAQ on Tivo's site: https://www.tivo.com/shop/stream



If the Stream actually does support OOH streaming then I will return the Slingbox I bought yesterday and get a Stream. Will someone else confirm OOH works?

Thanks
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Old 05-09-2014, 02:00 PM   #10
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Yikes. Clearly, that needs to get updated. The same chart exists under the Roamio FAQs and it shows the right answers of YES.
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Old 05-09-2014, 02:26 PM   #11
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Well, it seems the Stream does support OOH so I will now happily get one, and return the Slingbox. Thanks to everyone for their help.
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Old 05-09-2014, 03:30 PM   #12
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Keep in mind that for copy protected programs OOH streaming and/or downloading doesn't work, so if you recording from cable channels and have one of those cable companies that copy protects most everything then OOH streaming is not an option.
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Old 05-10-2014, 09:32 AM   #13
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Keep in mind that for copy protected programs OOH streaming and/or downloading doesn't work, so if you recording from cable channels and have one of those cable companies that copy protects most everything then OOH streaming is not an option.
Unless you have a newer wireless router that has a VPN server feature.

If you use that you will always be "in house" and can then stream everything.
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Old 05-13-2014, 12:23 PM   #14
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Except for in-home streaming on iOS, Slingbox 350/500 over component is usually best

No restrictive CCI bit concerns, better adaptive streaming, and works on Android/PC/Mac
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Old 05-15-2014, 06:27 AM   #15
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I have a stream and use it in the rental house we are temporarily in to stream content to the bedroom as we only have one cable outlet in the whole house so the tivo is in the living room. We have time warner cable so the stream value is somewhat stunted by TWC's decision on what they allow, but this is a cable company issue, not a tivo issue.

I used to travel internationally a lot and having the ability to fill an ipad for 12-14 hour flights was awesome. In addition, being able to reload my ipad from the hotel or watch a show in Beijing was a pretty cool feature (Chinese TV sucks for the most part.)

The stream is $99 and requires no contract of any time. It's a cheap toy that does what it needs to do. I just don't understand the angst and arguing about it. Yeah, it can't cook a pizza or cure cancer, but it's a good device to have.
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Old 05-15-2014, 07:22 AM   #16
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[quote=brewman;10100937]This is not meant to be a troll; I really don't see the value of the Stream, and I'm wondering why people have purchased them over something like a Slingbox.

I have been a TiVo owner since the Series 1, and currently have a Romio, two Premiers, and two Series 3's so I'm definitely not anti-Tivo.

I guess the biggest question I have is the Stream's utility particularly when compared to a Slingbox. There's very few instances I can think of where I would want to use it while I'm in my home, and the only way to use if outside my home is to pre-download recorded content to my iPad is a PITA compared to a Slingbox.

So, why did you Stream owners buy the Stream?[/QUOTe


The Stream sucks compared to the Slingbox.

This guy is gonna find out the hard way.
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Old 05-15-2014, 07:42 AM   #17
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I bought the Stream when it first came out and it has been great. It seemed to be having issues due to getting a little warm, so I turned it on its side and the issues have resolved.

Downloading to my ipad it great for times when I am without wifi and I don't have to rely on bandwidth for OOH streaming.
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Old 05-15-2014, 09:24 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by jimmypowder View Post
The Stream sucks compared to the Slingbox.
This guy is gonna find out the hard way.
I'm not finding that at all. In fact I find I'm using the Sling less and less these days and much prefer using the Stream. I'm even using the Stream in home quite a lot these days for times when I have to be more quiet in viewing than on the big TV. The Slingbox has its value as does the Stream.
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Old 05-15-2014, 09:41 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by moyekj View Post
The Slingbox has its value as does the Stream.
Jimmy just keeps forgetting that this is not winner take all. People can have multiple devices if it helps them do what they need to do. If these were $1000 devices I could understand the angst, but come on, they're $99.

This isn't religion, it's entertainment. If it works for what you need it to do, then buy it. If it doesn't, then don't. Best Buy is full of things that I don't need, but I am ok with that.
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Old 05-16-2014, 08:22 AM   #20
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I'm not finding that at all. In fact I find I'm using the Sling less and less these days and much prefer using the Stream. I'm even using the Stream in home quite a lot these days for times when I have to be more quiet in viewing than on the big TV. The Slingbox has its value as does the Stream.
Here is how i see it:
Audio Quality- Better on Slingbox by far.
Video Quality-Better on Slingbox by far
Premium Content-Can be played on Slingbox,cannot on Tivo.
Remote Control-Tivo is better then the Slingbox.
Connectivity-Much better and more stable on the Slingbox.
Slingbox Grade -A- if they get the lag fixed on changing channels,etc it would be an A

Tivo Grade- C- Has potential to become an A but lots of improvement
is needed.
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Old 05-16-2014, 08:28 AM   #21
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Jimmy just keeps forgetting that this is not winner take all. People can have multiple devices if it helps them do what they need to do. If these were $1000 devices I could understand the angst, but come on, they're $99.

This isn't religion, it's entertainment. If it works for what you need it to do, then buy it. If it doesn't, then don't. Best Buy is full of things that I don't need, but I am ok with that.
Yesterday I was at my daughters and decided to compare Tivo and Slingbox.
Very strong Fios network .

Tivo would get blurry then clear ,blurry then clear . really unstable
Slingbox was flawless with Hd quality picture .Controls changing channels were slow as hell.Very annoying.

I could project the Slingbox video onto the big HD Tv they have .Awesome.
They have an Apple TV.

Can I do that with Tivo?
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Old 05-16-2014, 08:34 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by jimmypowder View Post
Audio Quality- Better on Slingbox by far.
I've not noticed any audio differences at all when client device is an iPad.
Quote:
Video Quality-Better on Slingbox by far
For OOH streaming yes, but if you OOH download at medium or high quality then you get guaranteed quality levels which is something you can't do with Sling. For in home, streaming gives you high quality video which is more than adequate IMO.

Quote:
Premium Content-Can be played on Slingbox,cannot on Tivo.
Yes. In my case I don't subscribe to any premium channels and only premium channels are CCI protected, hence everything I record is available to stream and/or download so not a factor.

Quote:
Remote Control-Tivo is better then the Slingbox.
Yes, big advantage here and one of main reasons I like using the TiVo app.

Quote:
Connectivity-Much better and more stable on the Slingbox.
For streaming yes, but again you can use downloads to get consistent quality with Stream that is not possible with Sling.

I don't watch live TV at all, so the download method is what I use primarily for OOH viewing, and that is superior to using Sling for viewing IMO as long as you can give some time for downloads to buffer ahead of when you start watching - or even better, download shows before you are out of home.
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Old 05-16-2014, 08:53 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmypowder View Post
Here is how i see it:
Audio Quality- Better on Slingbox by far.
Video Quality-Better on Slingbox by far
Premium Content-Can be played on Slingbox,cannot on Tivo.
Remote Control-Tivo is better then the Slingbox.
Connectivity-Much better and more stable on the Slingbox.
Slingbox Grade -A- if they get the lag fixed on changing channels,etc it would be an A

Tivo Grade- C- Has potential to become an A but lots of improvement
is needed.
You forgot perhaps the biggest plus of the Stream: it doesn't tie up the device you're watching, so someone else can watch a program using the TiVo you're streaming from at the same time.
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Old 05-16-2014, 09:16 AM   #24
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You forgot perhaps the biggest plus of the Stream: it doesn't tie up the device you're watching, so someone else can watch a program using the TiVo you're streaming from at the same time.
Yes this is Tivo's biggest advantage though for me its a nonfactor.
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Old 05-16-2014, 11:38 PM   #25
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Yes this is Tivo's biggest advantage though for me its a nonfactor.
So to extrapolate: all the badmouthing you've been doing about the Stream and how it will suck for everybody is based on whether or not it works for your specific needs?
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Old 05-17-2014, 07:55 AM   #26
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So to extrapolate: all the badmouthing you've been doing about the Stream and how it will suck for everybody is based on whether or not it works for your specific needs?
No not really . The Tivo stream sucks .

You mention one feature the stream has that Slingbox doesn't but overall if you told me the Stream is better at Ooh streaming i would have to think you have never used a Slingbox .

Maybe you have only one tv in your house , I don't know . Over 82 percent of households have 2 or more TVs .

Have you ever used a Slingbox ?
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Old 05-17-2014, 09:31 AM   #27
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No not really . The Tivo stream sucks . You mention one feature the stream has that Slingbox doesn't but overall if you told me the Stream is better at Ooh streaming i would have to think you have never used a Slingbox . Maybe you have only one tv in your house , I don't know . Over 82 percent of households have 2 or more TVs . Have you ever used a Slingbox ?
I have two TVs in my house. I also have both a TiVo Stream and a Slingbox. Since getting the Stream, I can count on one hand the number of times I've used the Slingbox.
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Old 05-17-2014, 09:54 AM   #28
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I have two TVs in my house. I also have both a TiVo Stream and a Slingbox. Since getting the Stream, I can count on one hand the number of times I've used the Slingbox.
Congrats . I hope your enjoying the great video and audio quality of the Tivo Stream outside the house !
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Old 05-17-2014, 12:01 PM   #29
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Congrats . I hope your enjoying the great video and audio quality of the Tivo Stream outside the house !
I guess you just choose to ignore the download option which can actually give you better quality and certainly better trick play experience than Sling OOH?
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Old 05-17-2014, 12:30 PM   #30
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Congrats . I hope your enjoying the great video and audio quality of the Tivo Stream outside the house !
I have been; thanks. I've found the quality of both the Stream and the Slingbox to be comparable.
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