240 vs 540

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by tivarino, Sep 1, 2007.

  1. Sep 1, 2007 #1 of 21
    tivarino

    tivarino New Member

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    What are the practical differences between the S2ST 240 units and the 540 units? Should I care if BestBuy wants to replace my 240 with a 540?
     
  2. Sep 1, 2007 #2 of 21
    bkdtv

    bkdtv New Member

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    The 240 uses a NEC 5432 CPU @ 166MHz with 32Mb DDR266.
    The 540 uses a Broadcom BCM7318 @ 266MHz with 64Mb DDR266.

    If it were me, I would ask to see if they will give you a credit toward the new TivoHD.
     
  3. Sep 1, 2007 #3 of 21
    tivarino

    tivarino New Member

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    So, the 540 IS a better unit? Does TTG work equally well with either unit?

    I don't have HD and don't expect to have it any time soon.
     
  4. Sep 1, 2007 #4 of 21
    JamieP

    JamieP Member

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    Minor correction: both boxes have 32MB (~ 24MB available to the linux kernel after reserved memory is taken out). Also the 540 uses a bcm7317; the bcm7318 is used in the DT models (649), which do have 64MB (~ 56MB available to the kernel).

    Clock rate doesn't tell the whole story. The bcm7317 has no FPU, for example. Also the bcm7317 is an integrated design that replaces several chips in the 240. It's doing more than just the work of the general purpose CPU in the 240. In my experience, most things are slower on a 540 than on a 240.

    There are many reports that the 5xx models are slower on network transfers (MRV and TTG) than 2xx models. If you search a little you should be able to find some comparisons posted on this site.

    If you want to stay analog, perhaps you can upgrade to a DT. In my experience, it performs better than a 540, especially if you use the integrated network controller, and you get a second tuner to boot.
     
  5. Sep 1, 2007 #5 of 21
    mick66

    mick66 Dirty Burger

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  6. Sep 1, 2007 #6 of 21
    classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    The only practical difference to normal usage is minimal. The 540 is just cost reduction of the 240 platform. The big difference is that the 540 uses an integrated CPU/Video decoder with USB, rather than a separate number of ICs the 240 has (about 5 are built into one). That integration of USB, at least, "weakens" USB performance on most adapters. And it and new TiVos after it use a different kerneli/initrd protection scheme tied to the PROM., which must be replaced with a hacked PROM to affect other system hacks.
     
  7. Sep 1, 2007 #7 of 21
    tivarino

    tivarino New Member

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    Thank you for the detailed answers, JamieP That is what I thought I read after the 540 models came out.

    I talked to my BB a few minutes ago and they said their policy is to try to fix it first. Since I DO have the warranty, I think I'm gonna give them a shot at it. If they can/will I think I'd be better off keeping the 240.
     
  8. Sep 1, 2007 #8 of 21
    tivarino

    tivarino New Member

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    Thanks, classicsat. I'm unlikely to hack the box other than to upgrade the hard drive now that the warranty will be over (expires in a couple months, but will expire immediately when BB puts their hands on it). As I said above I'm gonna let them take a shot at fixing it. And if they decide to replace it, maybe I can negotiate a dual tuner. My primary concern will be keeping my lifetime sub...
     
  9. Sep 1, 2007 #9 of 21
    alansplace

    alansplace ------ Alan ------

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    that doesn't matter. the TiVo HD (652) is a better dual tuner than the DT (649) in that it can tune two different channels and record them without a set top box (it actually cannot use a set top box but instead uses the much cheaper cablecards) or any cablecards installed. when used with just SD programs it can store 180 hours of recorded programming. and if your standard definition tv happens to have a set of component inputs (red, blue, green) then the picture is sharper than av or s-video.
    --
    Alan :D
     
  10. tivarino

    tivarino New Member

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    Dec 21, 2003
    Aren't cablecards one way? Meaning, if I use cablecards, won't I lose the ability to use VideoOnDemand and other services? If so, I don't think I want to give up VOD...
     
  11. alansplace

    alansplace ------ Alan ------

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    yes they are. yes you will lose that ability if you retain no stb's. i still have 2 stb's as well as 4 s-type cablecards. and anyway, as a tivo user i've never experienced a desire for VOD.
    --
    Alan :D
     
  12. tivarino

    tivarino New Member

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    OK. Just came back from BB. They will give me (!) EITHER a HD tivo or a standard dual tuner Tivo. When I bought my TIVO in 2003 I paid nearly $300 for it, and right now BB is selling the HD Tivo for $299.

    However, as attractive as the new technology is, the fact that the S3 can't do TTG (right?) and I don't have HD and probably won't any time soon, I think the best choice has to be the DT standard def TIVO. Am I crazy? Maybe, but it makes sense to me...
     
  13. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

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    BB stated policy for this type of situation is to replace your box with "equivalent technology", not "equivalent price". If they are offerring a Tivo HD (by the way this is not the S3, which is higher priced) I think you should jump at the offer. Yes, it cannot do TTG, but indications are that this will be available within months, at least for SD.

    Even if you have no plans for HD in the near future, you will at least have it when you are ready.

    The one drawback is that if you are currently using a set top box from cable, you will have to change to cablecards. Not really a drawback once you get them working properly, and it becomes one less box in your cabinet.
     
  14. jfh3

    jfh3 Active Member

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    Go for the Tivo HD. Even if you don't have high def today, you'll see a better picture with analog channels compared to the DT and be future-proof. Remember, the DT can only record one digital channel at a time via the external input - the cable feed is analog only.

    The ONLY reason to get the DT was if you need to use the Tivo with Dish or DirecTV or if you just can't wait for TTG on the THD box.
     
  15. jfh3

    jfh3 Active Member

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    Kind of thread related:

    Can anyone tell me if a 540 image (8.3 level) will boot in a 240 box?
     
  16. mick66

    mick66 Dirty Burger

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    No, it won't.
     
  17. tivarino

    tivarino New Member

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    Well, I know you all think I'm nuts, but I ran out last night after that last post to get to BB before they closed, and went with the DTSD 80 HR TIVO. Given that I use VOD alot, use TTG alot and don't have any HD equipment, I couldn't rationalize getting the HD TIVO. It would have required me to change the way I do TV. I'm sure by the time I go HD, prices on this stuff will be more reasonable.

    Thanks for the advice, folks.
     
  18. jfh3

    jfh3 Active Member

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    Why would anyone think you're nuts? You made the best decision for you.

    If you're satisfied, that's all that counts. And the fact that you'll still be enjoying Tivo!
     
  19. alansplace

    alansplace ------ Alan ------

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    exactly
    --
    Alan :D
     
  20. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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