Bought a Roamio for a great price, what are my options?

Discussion in 'TiVo Roamio DVRs' started by TXNet88, Jan 8, 2018.

  1. Jan 8, 2018 #1 of 42
    TXNet88

    TXNet88 New Member

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    Hi everyone, proud to be part of the community.

    I recently bought a tivo roamio for $20 (not the basic ota one with the cc slot, but the one that includes the cable card slot), I dont think the lifetime subscription is included, so I wanted to know what are options/best way to use it? And was that a good price (came with remote, cables, etc).

    The reason I bought it is because of comcast charging per box to watch tv, so I bought this and activated my cable card to reduce that fee. I was hoping I could use this in conjuction with a tivo mini, to kind of see if I could use it like a hdhomerun prime and display cable on another tv, but I believe without a tivo subscription, this isn't possible?

    Right now it looks like my two options are use it as a set top box to avoid the comcast fee, or pay $15/mo $150/year or $549.99 lifetime to get the tivo subscription (which would defeat the purpose of what I'm doing/take forever to break even).

    If anyone has any thoughts, ideas, suggestions, I would appreciate it. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Jan 8, 2018 #2 of 42
    V7Goose

    V7Goose OTA ONLY and Loving It!

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    To use it in any way, you MUST have a TiVo subscription. Period.
     
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  3. Jan 8, 2018 #3 of 42
    rdrrepair

    rdrrepair Bill Knapp

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    Welcome to the forum

    Many people have paid a monthly fee and have then tried to cancel only to be offered a lifetime fee substantially cheaper than $549.99. YMMV
     
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  4. Jan 8, 2018 #4 of 42
    V7Goose

    V7Goose OTA ONLY and Loving It!

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    Your statement that you "activated my cable card" seems a bit puzzling - if the TiVo box was not already activated with a subscription, I do not think you should have been able to get the cable card to work. What does the TiVo show in the System Information for account status?
     
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  5. Jan 8, 2018 #5 of 42
    rdrrepair

    rdrrepair Bill Knapp

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    If you couple a few mini units to the Roamio you'll recoup any other box rental fees faster.
     
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  6. Jan 8, 2018 #6 of 42
    TXNet88

    TXNet88 New Member

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    They had already activated it with a subscription.The original owner called the cable company to remove it from their account and thats how I was able to activate it with a cable card.

    Under system information account status I see:

    Tivo service account status: 3: Account in Good Standing
    Tivo Service level: I:-
     
  7. Jan 8, 2018 #7 of 42
    krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    What @V7Goose said, you'll need a TiVo service subscription to use the Roamio in any way.

    You've researched your options on the service front, but another option, were you interested in All-In/Lifetime but are leery of the cost, would be to buy a Roamio OTA that includes the All-In/Lifetime service and then transplant the CableCARD adapter from your used Roamio to the OTA, making the Lifetime'd Roamio OTA CableCARD-ready.

    NOTE: This ~workaround~ is not supported by TiVo, is suggested w/o warranty, and could be blocked by TiVo at some future date -- though you'd be far from alone in taking the approach.​

    CableCARD adapters for the Roamio OTA can be purchased via eBay, but often cost more than you paid for a whole Roamio -- so you're also getting a spare remote, power adapter, hard drive and misc. parts, for the same cost or less than just an adapter. A good deal.

    But, yes, if you were to have a fully-functioning Roamio, you could

    * For the most reliable whole home solution, you'll want the Roamio and Minis networked via Ethernet and/or MoCA.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2018
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  8. Jan 8, 2018 #8 of 42
    krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    The previous owner removing the TiVo device from their cable TV provider account (and returning the CableCARD to the provider) is not the same as transferring ownership of the TiVo box.

    Do you have a TiVo account? Did the previous owner transfer ownership of the TiVo box to you, such that the Roamio is now listed as a device in your TiVo account?

    See: How to Transfer a TiVo Device to a New Owner

    Once the TiVo box is transferred, whatever portion remains of the current service contract will transfer with ownership, so if the box is just on a monthly or annual service subscription, you'll effectively have a trial period paid for by the previous owner, possibly of more value than what you paid for the box, itself. And you'll be able to check the box's service status via your My Account page on TiVo.com.
     
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  9. Jan 8, 2018 #9 of 42
    V7Goose

    V7Goose OTA ONLY and Loving It!

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    OK, that shows that it is not currently a lifetime subscription, but you do need to have it transferred to your own account - that will not cost you anything, but usually requires the previous owner to call in and get a case number to give you to facilitate the transfer. Without the case number, getting the transfer done can sometimes be a real problem. Do know that you need ALL TiVo devices that you want to use together on the same account.

    As long as you do not want to use that box with a Mini or other TiVos, it will continue to work on someone els's account until they either cancel the service or close their own account, at which time it will become a doorstop. Best to get the transfer done now while it should be easy.

    At least that is how it works with a NORMAL TiVo. If that box actually came from a cable company instead of from TiVo direct, then I do not have a clue about how the accounts work! Cable companies are EVIL!!
     
  10. TXNet88

    TXNet88 New Member

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    I appreciate all the advice and tips everyone chimed in. I did what op posted above and contacted the person I bought it from (who gladly called in and transferred it to me), and I had to signup for a monthly plan up transferring.
     
  11. ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay TCF Club

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    Before there was the Roamio OTA, there was the basic model 4 tuner model which can be used on cable or OTA.

    What you posted about the Tivo Service is either monthly or yearly.
    Lifetime is a different service number (5).
     
  12. waja

    waja Member

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    I didn't see any response to the question on whether this was a good price. Well, since you asked, I would say this is good price if you just want to test out TiVo for a month or two or if you can't afford something better. I just did a quick check on Craigslist and found a TiVo Roamio Plus for $325 with lifetime subscription. Buying this one costs more up front, but saves in the long run. Also, there is still some longevity in the Roamio so you could possibly sell this one for the same price that you paid for it.
     
  13. TXNet88

    TXNet88 New Member

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    I bought it to have for 2 reasons as well:

    1.) I could record manually ota if I get a hd antenna?
    2.) Could use with a cable card to reduce cable box fees (or I could've used a HD Homerun Prime)?
     
  14. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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    1: not without service.
    2: probably. Depends on your cable box fees and if it works with a cable card.
     
  15. TXNet88

    TXNet88 New Member

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    So there is no way to record (even manually without the service)?
     
  16. atmuscarella

    atmuscarella Well-Known Member

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    Correct.
     
  17. ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay TCF Club

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    If its a Roamio Plus/Pro, you cannot even use it for OTA, only cable.
     
  18. randywalters

    randywalters AVS Old Timer

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    What is the exact model number of your Roamio (sticker on the back)? It will help determine your options.
     
  19. TXNet88

    TXNet88 New Member

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    Soon as i get home today ill post it. I had called tv before buying it and they told me there were two versions of the roamio, one that was ota and one that did both. They told me the one i was planning on purchasing did both.

    So buying a tv roamio like the one i did was a waste or like buying a paperweight without paying for the subscription?

    I like it and all, but the whole point was to try to lower cable bill with the set top fee.

    I have only two comcast boxes running and they are charging me $9.95 - 2.50 just to use one cable card. They are telling me that even though its my first cable card, i already have a unit (comcast box), so they have to charge a fee, which is crazy.
     
  20. V7Goose

    V7Goose OTA ONLY and Loving It!

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    I'm not sure how I could have stated it more plainly than I did in the very first response to you in this thread - Maybe I just need to shout in a different place? You CANNOT use a TiVo box for ANYTHING AT ALL without having some type of TiVo service subscription. Asking the same thing multiple times does not change that answer.

    There are actually THREE types of Roamio boxes, not just two, and without checking the model number against the specs, you cannot be sure what yours can do. I do not own a Roamio, nor am I going to waste my time to go look it all up, but I believe this is accurate:

    The original Roamio Basic did both cable and OTA. You might have this model.
    The currently manufactured Roamio OTA only does OTA (unless you modify the box). Since you can use a cable card, this is not what you have.
    The Roamio Pro or Plus uses a cable card and CANNOT receive OTA at all. You might have this model.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2018
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