How long will S3 last?

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by phecksel, Aug 21, 2010.

  1. phecksel

    phecksel Member

    Oct 10, 2003


    Three years into a 3 yr service plan... need to do something :)

    After reading the premier forum, decided I'm going to wait for now.

    Annual delays my decision for another year...

    3yr = lifetime costs (with discount), but in either case, I'll have a 6yr+ old Tivo.

    Hard drive has been replaced with 1T, so there's plenty of space. I've been dealing with OTA signal drop issues leading to stuttering (new HD didn't change it). Actually suspecting nearby Ham or CB operator splashing the signal, but haven't been able to prove that theory either.

    Suggestions, ideas, thoughts?
  2. shwru980r

    shwru980r Well-Known Member

    Jun 22, 2008
    What kind of antenna are you using?
  3. dianebrat

    dianebrat wait.. I did what? TCF Club

    Jul 6, 2002
    My original S1 that I got in 2000 is still running up at a friends house with a replacement drive 10 years later, I have no reason think that S3's won't have an equally long life.
  4. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

    Feb 2, 2006
    Consumer electronics will last as long as they will last. In other words, it's anyone's guess how long your Tivo will survive. Replacing the hard drive every few years is probably good preventative maintenance but there's nothing that says the replacement won't die in short order either.

    I've got a pair of Kenwood L-07M monoblock power amps in my surround system that I bought new back in 1978 and they're still going strong. I've seen a lot of them that have also died in that same time span. There's no 100% guarantee that every single component inside of a piece of electronics is exactly the same as the rest of the ones made in that same plant. Electronic components all fail at different rates and some may last nearly forever.

    The quality and stability of the electric service that feeds your home plays a major part in the longevity of each electrical device in your home. Using a line conditioner or UPS with surge protection, voltage regulation, and line filtering is probably the best thing you can do for it. Having just a battery backup on a Tivo is otherwise pretty useless unless the UPS can provide some other form of protection.

    With Tivos, the hard drive is the one component you can almost guarantee will fail at some point. If you're lucky, the rest of the hardware will endure for quite some time. If you're looking for some sort of insurance that your Tivo will last forever, it just isn't possible to predict.

    I've owned literally dozens of various Tivo models over the years and never had a hardware failure in any of them with the exception of the infamous HDMI card issue in the HR10-250 models and only one or two hard drive failures in the rest. Perhaps I've been extremely lucky compared to others, but every Tivo I've ever owned has been very reliable and long lasting.
  5. phecksel

    phecksel Member

    Oct 10, 2003


    I had a directional antenna under the deck, with most of the stations located within it's beam pattern. Went to an omni directional powered antenna, that's mounted to the deck railing. I have high 90's signal strength, that will suddenly drop into the 60's and cause pixelization or stuttering. I may try raising the omni antenna higher, or even raising the directional antenna and try to optimize the angle a bit more. Some stations have no issues, some have a lot of issues. Switch to digital made it worse.
  6. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance TCF Club

    Dec 1, 2000
    Silicon Valley
    In most cases TiVos in general don't have many hardware problems except for the Hard Drives. Sounds like you already know how to put in a new one, so IMO it will probably last as long as you want it to. Just keep a backup of your software and SP's like I did. You can replace the HDD if necessary quite easily.

    By the time six years has passed you will undoubtedly be ready for the new software and hardware that will be around then. For now? I see no reason to give up my beloved S3. ;)
  7. lessd

    lessd Well-Known Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Some people are still using the Series 1 that's over 10 years old, if you just want to record SDTV, time shift TV, and skip ads the Series 1 still works, the Series 3 introduced HDTV and I don't think that that standard is going to change over the next 20 years (the last US TV standard lasted over 60 years), so if all you need is to record HDTV, time shift TV, and skip ads, by just changing drives the Series 3 could last many years. New software/new TiVo models may or may not offer anything you need. Some on this form must spend a lot of time using the UI because they want the total UI to be in HD, I spend most of my TiVo time watching what I recorded and just want the UI to get me to my program quickly, don't care if getting there is in HD or SD.
  8. 84lion

    84lion Member

    Jan 22, 2009
    I can't tell from your reply what your reason was for going to the omni antenna. Were you having the signal drop problems with the directional antenna, or just with the omni?
    Based on the signal drop I would guess some kind of multipath interference, which one would think the directional antenna would minimize.
  9. Sep 9, 2010 #9 of 10

    phecksel Member

    Oct 10, 2003
    bingo. I moved the antenna, literally 2 feet. Problem left one broadcast channel and jumped to another channel. Going to get a pole and mount it above the deck. I was also having issues with the directional antenna. If I continue to have the issue, will try the directional antenna again.
  10. dlfl

    dlfl Cranky old novice

    Jul 6, 2006
    Dayton OH
    Last I checked there is a deficiency of the OTA tuners in the Premiere relative to the S3 or HD models -- an argument for staying with what you have, assuming OTA continues to be of interest. There is at least one thread in the Premiere forum on this.

Share This Page

spam firewall