CES 2006: DirecTV Plus HD DVR with pics!!!

Discussion in 'DirecTV TiVo Powered PVRs & Receivers' started by lee espinoza, Jan 5, 2006.

  1. Jan 6, 2006 #81 of 115
    Joe Siegler

    Joe Siegler Member

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    I'm inclined to look at this when it comes out. I've been a TiVo person since 1999, but I'm wanting to stay with DirecTV. My primary reason is NFL Sunday Ticket.

    If Comcast would have NFLST, I'd consider going back there so I could have a "TiVo" again. But since NFLST is an D* exclusive, I'll be staying.

    I'm sure the HR20 will be fine. How well it performs I'm sure is up to personal taste; meaning the software, and all that. What I've read about the HR15 tells me there's some things it does better, some worse, so it's a personal preference thing as far as I see it. While I've been a TiVo person for awhile (got my first one in May of 1999), if someone else comes along and does something at least as good, I'd be a fool not to at least look at it.

    I am fortunate in that I was one of the people who was around when it was still possible to get a lifetime subscription for their PVR service, so I got grandfathered, and don't have to pay the monthly fee.

    Also these pictures really look like a hardware beta. I seriously doubt the final product will actually look exactly like that - specifically in the back. Eveyrthing will get labled, and all that.
     
  2. Jan 6, 2006 #82 of 115
    HiDefGator

    HiDefGator New Member

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    I give up. Clearly anything that annoys you, reaches your definition of the term MAJOR FLAW. Thankfully your definition is not used by anyone else in the entire software industry.
     
  3. Jan 6, 2006 #83 of 115
    tbeckner

    tbeckner TiVo Fan

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    I doubt that, I have been in software development for the last 33 years. And I have independently developed major industry applications for the specific vertical market that I have worked in the last 22 years. And if I left out a used function like dual buffers and created a situation where my product would lose its current data (live buffer reset) when any secondary function was selected, then I would not still be in this business for over three decades now.

    If a major flaw to you is a completely unworkable product, then I hope the god that you don't work for any major software developer.

    Again, we might disagree that it is not what you would describe as a MAJOR FLAW, and I am not attempting to minimize you,

    But what are you arguing about?

    DirecTV has already admitted that the lack of dual buffers is a major enough problem to spend a considerable amount of money to rectify.

    DirecTV has admitted to the problem, so what makes you think that you need to admit to the problem, before it can be deemed a major flaw.
     
  4. Jan 6, 2006 #84 of 115
    Kanyon71

    Kanyon71 New Member

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    Ok your saying this based on the fact that the TiVo has some Silk Screening on the back? Or did I miss something?
     
  5. Jan 6, 2006 #85 of 115
    Rax

    Rax New Member

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    In a box.
    There's some serious trolling going on here. :p
     
  6. Jan 6, 2006 #86 of 115
    tbeckner

    tbeckner TiVo Fan

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    I believe he was using the lack of labeling on the back as an example. The "HR20" does look unfinished on the outside. The "HR20" shown at CES 2006 was sure a poor example of a working model, and the DirecTV people should be somewhat embarrassed. Ultimately it doesn’t matter what the outside shows (other than a lack of professionalism), but how the inside performs.

    Although, the CableCard is the future of the cable industry and the new Series 3 TiVo, the cable industry really needs to GROW UP. Currently the version 1.0 and 1.1 CableCards are too limited to serve as a functional springboard for cable industry and CableCard device growth. The one huge advantage that cable has over one-way limited bandwidth services like DirecTV is OnDemand, and current versions of CableCards do not allow for OnDemand functionality, in either a PPV or NON-PPV functionality. Which means to me, that until the cable industry solves that problem, they will continue to have churn problems.
     
  7. Jan 6, 2006 #87 of 115
    ebonovic

    ebonovic has gone his way...

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    Tinley...
    Gosh... I missed a lot going to bowling tonight.

    As a developer (only 10 years but... 10 years none the less)....

    A Major Design flaw is something that pretty much can't be "corrected" with out pretty much rewriting or rebuilding significantly.

    Dual Buffers IMHO, Is not that. I think DirecTV underestimated how often that feature was actually used by people. Since the unit CAN record two things at once, which basically is nothing more then "saving" the dual buffers... All that "should" be needed ... "in theory" is a function to be coded in to let you flip between the two. Woudl be nearly the same as flipping between two active recordings (Which you can do, not by a single push, but by going through the LIST)

    That is not "major" in my opinion from a Design perspective. "Major Oversight" maybe, but "design" nah.

    Actually, can you point me at the press release or interview with someone "higher then a CSR" that admitted it was a "major design flaw"... I don't recall that one.

    I know we have had posts from people "in the know", including myself, that they are working on adding the feature... But I know in my conversations with DirecTV, it hasn't been looked at as a design flaw... but more of a... we underestimated how popular that feature was.

    And I agree with you again (three times in a day.. what is the world coming too), that just because the back panel of the HR20 wasn't labeled or polished, doesn't mean it is a pre-alpha state. But again.. .just because there weren't pretty pictures on the back...

    It is not like they had a circuit board with wires going in and out from it tied to a piece of plywood....

    The buffer reset when playing some thing from the list... That was a surprise to me, and do expect that to be fixed in the next software release.


    Again: I am just more of an optimist I guess... with only 10 years of experience... most of that "fixing" "Design Flaws" and "coding flaws"... I just have a different perspective of things.

    My specialty is re-engineering (usually from old undocumented code), and re-designs. (amongst other things (such as being a System and Development DBA), but those two are what usually what most of what my work boils down too) And of course... bug finding and fixing... (I hate that part)



    And yes... You knew (and I wouldn't let you down), I would defend the R15 where it needs defending. It is not a perfect DVR, and my activity on dbstalk.com should point it out that I am not trying to hide or download any of the true issues with the unit.

    It certainly isn't the POS that a lot of people are painting it to be... It isn't TiVo yet.. and in a lot of ways, I am glad that it isn't (But in some I wish it would get a little closer).
     
  8. Jan 6, 2006 #88 of 115
    SpacemanSpiff

    SpacemanSpiff New Member

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    Which begs the question. With all the DTiVo boxes out there they couldn't do some market research to find out what people actually like and don't like about DVR's? Somebody really picked the wrong focus group to interview before putting out the design spec on that box if they underestimated dual buffered tuners.
     
  9. Jan 7, 2006 #89 of 115
    IOTP

    IOTP New Member

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    Desert...
    My guess is, that the HR20 will have the"directv" DVR engine, and not the TIVO engine.

    Shame, what a shame.
     
  10. Jan 7, 2006 #90 of 115
    lee espinoza

    lee espinoza some guy

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    Noooooo :rolleyes:
     
  11. Jan 7, 2006 #91 of 115
    tbeckner

    tbeckner TiVo Fan

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    It just comes down to a point of view and use of words and I can guarantee you that I have customers who do not understand that it is a "DESIGN FLAW", when they view it as a "MAJOR FLAW", not a "CRITICAL FLAW", but a "MAJOR FLAW" when it is going to take a long period of time to correct (not fixed in the first month or two), which equates to a pile of money to correct. I could as easily define it as a "MAJOR OVERSIGHT", but one that should not have happened when a company is attempting to replace a previous entrenched product.

    A small part of my DVR design criteria would have included the following items in no specific order and I would have viewed the product as uncompleted without all of these. Although, this is a small quick list, I view these as major items.

    • Dual Tuner Recording
    • Season Pass Recording (with First Run selection capability)
    • List Grid (not a 1960's TV Guide Grid, I know I am bucking the trend here)
    • Dual Live Buffers (length 1 hour, with one button switching and standard controls)
    • No Resetting of Live Buffers (unless the channel was changed on that tuner)
    • Advanced Search Criteria (more complex than the current TiVo Wishlists)
    • Ease of Conflict Resolution (not something that TiVo has, but the "R15" has)

    And if they had shown up with a "HR20" on a piece of plywood, then the DirecTV folk should have hid away for the whole show, or maybe labeled it DISH NETWORK/ECHOSTAR.

    That is just plain sloppy but then again it could be a "MAJOR DESIGN FLAW", because they might be using the live buffer as a display buffer, or it could be easy to fix by not resetting the live buffer, only time will tell, but again very sloppy and could point to more serious problems in the future.

    I don't view the dual buffer situation as a "CODING FLAW" or a "BUG" it is without a doubt a "MAJOR DESIGN FLAW" that will take time to correct. And depending upon how they are using the "Live Buffer", the Resetting of the Live Buffer either could be a "MAJOR DESIGN FLAW" or "A CODING or INTERFACE FLAW", but that will depend upon how soon they correct it. I understand that three minor updates have happened to the "R15" since its initial release. If they correct the Live Buffer Reset problem within the first month (before February), then it was just likely a coding flaw, but if it takes longer and/or comes with the dual buffer rewrite, then it was a "MAJOR DESIGN FLAW". Time will tell us what the real problem was.

    Maintenance coding and enhancements come with software development and the only time it is a real painful is when you find badly designed and coded programs and real bad assumptions and concepts. Let us hope that the original designers and coders did a good job, remember "The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering", the 20th Anniversary Edition is available on Amazon in paperback.

    I am not trying to paint the "R15" as a POS (I had to think of what POS meant), but I am with you, I wish it would get a little closer, because what if TiVo has a problem making it because of the cable industry, where would that leave me if my DirecTiVos died and my only other choices where only a DirecTV DVR or one of the cable industry DVRs, from SciAmerican, Motorola, or Moxi.

    Oh God forbid, that would be a real disaster, so lets hope that the DirecTV guys get this DVR fixed and truely functional just in case, otherwise we all will have to suffer with bad DVRs.
     
  12. Jan 7, 2006 #92 of 115
    tbeckner

    tbeckner TiVo Fan

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    Do you think they even used a focus group? As I said before, the designers and/or developers had likely never used a DVR for any period of time.
     
  13. Jan 7, 2006 #93 of 115
    danielhart

    danielhart Nerp Nerp

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    I cant believe I just read this entire thread. Well, truthfully, I skimmed some of the design flaw arguments.

    Anways, as an early adopter who has owned 4 HR10-250's for almost two years now, here is my take:

    I choose my equipment based on what can give me the best available viewing experience given my particular circumstance. In my situation, D* and the HD Tivo was (and is) the best option available. When a better option presents itself, I will look at it, and act accordingly. Obviously this philosophy is not cheap, and it means that I will pay money for equipment that will rapidly depreciate. There is always a level of trial and error. But I know that going in, and I try to take that into account as best as I can.

    What really makes me laugh are all the "experts" who wax prolifically about equipment/technology they either won't or can't ever buy. Their arguments are the height of banality at best and downright silliness at worst.

    Well, I am going to end this post and turn on my soon to burn out (or burn-in) panny plasma and watch the episode of ER I recorded last night in glorious 1080i HD on my boat anchor/Tivo HR10-250. P*******************
     
  14. Jan 7, 2006 #94 of 115
    tbeckner

    tbeckner TiVo Fan

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    Here, here!

    That is what we all do.

    Some of us are just a little more conservative, so instead of buying into HD on the front-end, we spend our money on other toys and wait for other people to pay for the development of even better toys.

    I made the jump from cable to DirecTV in 1994 because I foresaw the advantage of quality digital video delivery (now called SD) and back then SD was a huge jump in quality (compared to the local cable company analog delivery) and all of the content across the borad was improved. In addition, the quantity of the available delivered content jumped almost 10 fold. But today, the jump from SD to HD is not that great (better quality, but not greater quantity) and the price jump is even steeper. So, I have made the choice to not buy into HD, and I DO NOT fault those who have, because I really do understand the need for quality delivery. And today, more than in the past, I have a need for other toys (10 computers in the house with 4 children) that always need updating and expanding), which is why I am very interested in getting either a CableCard cable tuner or a DirecTV tuner.

    None of us are all that different; we just make different choices based upon past experiences and current situations. I really am looking forward to buying into HD in three years or so, because the one place I would enjoy a true HD broadcast would be NFL and college football, but for now I will wait. And I am hoping that when the three year wait is over that the DVR wars will have proclaimed a true winner, the cable verses satellite providers battle will show a potential winner, and the HD equipment will have stabilized and the amount of HD content will actually be approaching 50%.

    I bought into the Sony Betamax in 1976, 2 years before VHS made it to the states. But I doubt that anyone except the pure rich and/or foolish are going to be rushing out to buy a $1,800 Blu-Ray drive for the home this coming spring.

    In fact, unless Hollywood puts the full screws to HD (or any digital content) over DRM fears; that in 2 decades or less there should not be any need for physical media at all. And all this infighting over HD-DVD and Blu-Ray will really be for not, except that drives may serve as a programmable interactive storage media for IT.
     
  15. Jan 7, 2006 #95 of 115
    ebonovic

    ebonovic has gone his way...

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    Tinley...
    I did some playing around with the R15 today (And I swear this is my last post in this thread about the R15 as it should go over to the other forum)

    IF I am actively recording something (aka IMHO.. A Saving Buffer), I can go to my list and play a previously recorded item. Exit that playback, and the other program is still there with all it's content. But if you are just in the 90 minute buffer, starting playback clear's the buffer. IMHO... It should just be a coding flaw to either tell it to "retain the buffer in it's current state... be it paused or playback", vs reset it.... Again... If designed correctly as what is the difference between RECORDING and Buffering (other than possible writing to a different partion on the drive, and ultimately saving that recording)

    Okay off that box for today.

    I know YOU haven't said the R15 is a POS, but others have and try to grab onto anything to prove that it is....

    Also...based on your list... with a few "bug" (my words) fixes....
    The R15 may meet all your criteria soon (including the advanced FIND options... )
     
  16. Jan 7, 2006 #96 of 115
    Billy66

    Billy66 Again with shoelaces

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    Please just add this to your signature so you don't have to include it in 50% of your posts. :)
     
  17. Jan 7, 2006 #97 of 115
    flmgrip

    flmgrip New Member

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    yes and no, if you want to be consverative you should'nt buy any HD. but that realy depends on what shows you are watching.

    but if you are not buying ONLY because you think 1080P will have 720P outdated real soon than you will wait a really long time.
     
  18. Jan 7, 2006 #98 of 115
    flmgrip

    flmgrip New Member

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    right now i can watch and record everything. who knows when that will change. and will be worthwhile for me to upgrade.

    but the same with the computers. unless you keep you hardware updated you won't be able to run the newest and best programs.
     
  19. Jan 7, 2006 #99 of 115
    tbeckner

    tbeckner TiVo Fan

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    Actually, I have a few computers that I built almost eight years ago, that have had small incremental upgrades to their CPU, memory, hard drives, graphics adapters, and OS that are still highly functional today, and all of my machines run the software that I use on a daily basis, XP Pro, Office 2003, etc. The kids have some of faster machines, because they wanted to play heavier duty games like EVERQUEST, and my wife and I have machines that are just four years old, that I run Visual Studio 2003 and 2005 on. But all of the cases, motherboards, power supplies, keyboards, mice (I personally still use a Microsoft IntelliMouse Pro that I started buying in 1998 and I will be on my third one later this year), CD-ROM drives, floppy drives, and monitors are all still the same on all of the machines from the date they where built unless they had to be replaced. I do have to say, that the ASUS P2B and P3BF motherboards (with Socket 370 Slot 1 adapters and 800MHz processors) are starting to get a little long in the tooth and I will likely start replacing the motherboards, processors, memory, and graphics adapters in those machine this next year.

    So, you should realize that if you build/assemble your own machines from quality components, like ASUS motherboards, you can actually extend their lifetime for small incremental low cost upgrades.

    What I was attempting to point out that with consumer level HD equipment, especially in the case of the HR10, is that to continue to function, you cannot make small incremental upgrades to their components and if you want to get HD locals (that you cannot get via OTA) you have to “THROW THE BABY OUT WITH THE BATH WATER”. The same is not always true in the computer industry.
     
  20. Jan 7, 2006 #100 of 115
    tbeckner

    tbeckner TiVo Fan

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    I am not worried about 1080p that should be fully resolved by the time I buy into HD.

    Understand I am not saying that people who buy into HD at this point are making a foolish decision. What I am saying is that I have decided that buying into HD would be a foolish decision for me, based upon the way that I make buying decisions.

    When I build/assemble a computer, I NEVER buy the latest and greatest and what usually is the most expensive of the components. I always attempt to buy the highest performance to cost ratio components, although there are specific trade-offs that I have to do when buying a motherboard or memory, because of possible future expansion considerations.

    In other words, you will not find me buying a 975X chipset motherboard or an Intel 955 processor at this time. Although I might consider a 955X chipset motherboard and a 600 series processor.

    It has never made any sense to buy the highest price components, because you pay a large amount for a very small increase in performance. Of course that is what the companies want you to do, but I refuse to pay for that initial release development costs.
     

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