Hello Tivo community!
Wanted to say hi and let those that are with Time Warner know how the transition from their junk to TIVO went. Reason I am doing this is because I am very OCD when it comes to buying new tech and could not find much through searches, specifically for those that used TW especially in the upper east coast (NY).
So for the last year and half I have been playing with the idea of moving from Time Warner’s DVR (SA 8300) to something else…be it Ceton, HD Homerun, Tivo. When I started this search I found that each solution had its ups and downs and that the series 4 seemed have its glitches as well. If it was just me I would have went HTPC route with Ceton and or HDH. But since I have a wife and a 9 year old daughter I figured making it as simple as possible would be best.
For the last 3 weeks or so the 8300 has been getting slower and slower in response to the remote as well as showing that it was recording then the recording would not show up after completion. Sound was dropping in and out as well as severe pixilation. I did all the basics things like resetting the device, defragging, and then formatting to no avail. Finally decided enough was enough and with the new roamio’s out it was time for an upgrade.
Went to best buy as I had a couple of BB gift certificates from Christmas and picked up the Roamio plus as well as 2 minis and only had to shell out 300 bucks out of pocket. I picked the plus as I couldn’t justify the 200 dollar price difference for a 3tb hard drive that I have already sitting at home that could be swapped in later on if it was ever needed.
So here is where the fun starts.
Went down to our local TW office and requested a Cable card and Tuning Adapter. I tried to get 2 as that way; if in the case that one didn’t work I could try the other and save myself 30 min drive back to the office. Unfortunately they only had 2 sets and the guy at the counter acknowledged that they don’t give them out much and didn’t want to exhaust his stock. The card he gave me was a Scientific Atlantic card issued in 2008. I was pretty nervous about this after hearing all the firmware horror stories.
I got home hooked everything up following the instructions and called the 888 number on the documentation. (BTW TW will give you nothing other than the hardware). Checked the firmware on the card and found that it was updated June of 2013 with a FW number higher then what I’ve read on here recommended….felt a better about that. Started flipping though channels got to the first HD channel and got an error to call my cable provider…yay…!
Called back TW at 5pm on a Saturday and got a girl from most likely the Philippines who asked me about my devices ect ect, and sent a pairing request. We did this 3 times…pulled the card, rebooted the box, rebooted the tuning adapter. She then explained to me that there must be an issue with the MCard (Crap!) and that she would roll a truck to me on Thursday (WTF!). Now I’m getting the evil stare from the other half who was just seeing dollar signs bursting into flames! I decided I’ll try again and see if I can get someone else and see what they can do. I called back again and this time got someone from the US. He transfers me over to the Card activation department where I get hung up on (Double WTF!!).
In my reading I found this link where there is an Installer hot line that gets an engineer in Buffalo NY…I debated it but decided I’d give it one more try. Called back 3rd time…got a guy from the Philippines who I explained my whole endeavor to. He stated that he would again forward me to the card activation line but this time staying on the line until I got through (nice to see some concern for once). Unfortunately we were both on hold for over 15 min and he finally he asked if he could drop off while I waited. I reluctantly agreed and grabbed a beer and sat for an additional 20 min.
In the mean time I surfed the web and finally the phone picked up and a guy with a north eastern accent asked who I was. I thought this was strange when he asked me how I got the number…(great I’m getting dumped again). I explained whole ordeal yet again and he started working by asking me for the card ID and within 5 min had it up and running. He even found another fault in the setting that he explained would have caused issues for HBO. I found out he was with the engineering group that was based out of Buffalo that I read about in the forums.
So over all I’m happy with the TIVO. As far as TW goes…well it’s pretty bad when you just chalk it up to a typical TW experience. I have had a few hiccups here and there which I think is an issue of the Tuning Adapter not doing its job. Once in a while ill pick a channel out of the guide and I’ll get a channel not available and if I change the channel up or down one then back it will then be available. The minis are responsive and all the other features have been great. This is my first TIVO so I’m still learning. I really wish this had DLNA as I still have to use my WDLIVE to stream my movies from my home server but other than that I’m happy.