Potential New Customer

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by VideoRoy, May 17, 2011.

  1. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Since all the changes with Comcast in my area I am looking to make a change. I have had the CC DVR for quite some time and never really liked it but it has been functional until the recent xfinity update (yuck!). Additionally since the analog channels have be finally whacked and not remapped to clear QAM my HTPC is almost useless. The DTAs from CC really stink since I have to dumb down my digital TVs to really poor quality.

    So everything I read and hear about Tivo is mostly good. I did some research and figured out what I want to purchase but after chatting with the online rep the cost seems just too prohibitive for me since I was wanting the lifetime service.

    With that option depending on whether I get the Premiere or Premiere XL the break even period versus getting a 2nd CC DVR is 4 or 5 years. Below is my transcript discussion with Tivo online support. Does this seem right?

    I can get a second CC DVR for $15 a month that is roughly equivalent to the non-XL version so that pay back is 4 years. Even though it is a crummy unit it does the basics and is no commitment. I was hoping Tivo would be in the $500 range per box.

    Any thoughts as to if I am looking at this correctly? I understand the value of the Tivo just wondering if I missed a better value somehow in purchasing.

    Thanks.
     
  2. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    someone from Customer service should see your post. The CSR did not even ask you what you would pay but went into cut and paste mode :rolleyes:

    also dead wrong on discounts for additional boxes. You played CSR roulette and the chamber was empty, but that means you lost ;)
     
  3. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Interesting, thanks for the reply. Before I spoke to the CSR I did not realize there was a difference if I bought from BestBuy or not. I was hoping to pick one up tonight and swing by the Comcast store for a cable card. Depending on the CSR from Comcast the card is either free or $8.50 per month. I am not sure because I would probably have to keep my current DVR for some period of time until I could scrape up enough money for a second Tivo.
     
  4. dlfl

    dlfl Cranky old novice

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    Jul 6, 2006
    Dayton OH
    One of the frustrating things about TiVo is getting good information about options and costs both from TiVo and from the Cable Co. Another issue not even mentioned yet is the Tuning Adapter, which will probably be needed (if your system uses SDV). This is an extra box usually furnished free by the cable co, and which sometimes functions properly and reliably. On many systems, you need the TA or you will be missing a lot of your HD channels. You need to know if your system uses SDV and what channels are SDV.

    You can try asking ComCast and TiVo about such things but probably the best way to get info on options and costs, including SDV/Tuning Adapter issues, is to post your location and hope that other TiVo owners on the same system will fill you in.
     
  5. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Thanks. Updated my profile but I am in Houston.

    I have not heard of SDV so I will look into that one a little.
     
  6. reneg

    reneg Well-Known Member

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    Jun 19, 2002
    My cablecard billing experience with Comcast in Houston:
    1st - free
    2nd - $1.50/month
    3rd and up - $8.50 each/month

    Picking up the cablecard at the Comcast store is the most time consuming part as there always seems to be a line when I go. Cablecard activation is simple, call the number provided on the receipt when you pick up the cablecard.

    Pretty sure we don't have SDV or Tuning adapters in Houston (yet).
     
  7. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Thanks reneg. I probably have sometime to get it since it looks like I need to order from Tivo instead of buying from Bestbuy so I can get the lifetime service option but I still need to weigh the options. I was not planning on a $900 expense right now.

    BTW, great forum here. All the quick responses is very much appreciated. I consider this another perk if I move to Tivo.
     
  8. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    You can buy a TiVo for regular price from Best Buy and get Lifetime on it. The CSR made a large assumption that was simply wrong
     
  9. WhiskeyTango

    WhiskeyTango New Member

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    Sep 20, 2006
    New Jersey
    Wait a few days, Tivo is changing their pricing on the 19th. You'll be able to get a Premiere for $99 and Lifetime for $499. Or the XL for $299. You many want to just get the Premiere and get a bigger, pre-imaged drive off of ebay for around $100.
     
  10. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    If that is the case it shaves at least $100 off and maybe $200.

    Assuming $500 for the lifetime if I do not buy from Tivo and the XL is $200 cheaper than straight from Tivo then I am down to $800. A little better but maybe I should set my sights for the regular Premiere for $100. $600 is back in the ballpark and I could just add an external drive later which is what I did for my Comcast DVR.
     
  11. dlfl

    dlfl Cranky old novice

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    Dayton OH
    Don't plan to add an external drive. HDD failure is by far the most common mode of TiVo failure. With two HDD's you double the failure probability. And since TiVo splits each recording between internal and external HDD's, you lose ALL recordings if either drive fails.

    As a previous poster mentioned, you can buy a plug-in 1 TB internal drive from DVR_DUDE on eBay for $110 with 3 yr. warranty, and keep your original 250 GB drive as a backup. Officially, opening the case invalidates your TiVo warranty but many posters here report you can swap your original drive back in if you need warranty service and get no grief from TiVo. YMMV. (Or just wait beyond the time when you care about the TiVo warranty before installing the expanded HDD.)
     
  12. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Thanks I appreciate all the advice. I have had my external drive on my CC DVR for about 5 years. It is about to die (constant re-calibration) so I know what you are talking about. It also splits the recordings over the drives so it is always a crap shoot.

    I think I have convinced myself to sell off most of my HTPC gear and put the money towards the TiVo and lifetime service. It should be more family friendly (easier to use) at least.
     
  13. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Ok, I have spoke to another CSR and they have told me there are no lifetime options for new customers of Premiere products. Not just if I purchase from BestBuy but even if I purchase directly from Tivo. I am guessing there is a policy change or something.

    One thing I have to say as a potential customer Tivo is very flaky and give even worse inconsistent answers than my cable company.

    I appreciate the help folks but I just do not trust any of this. Maybe I will try to revive my HTPC with a new cablecard. That was my orignal plan but the Tivo product got so many good reviews I got back on the fence.

    In the mean time I will go pick up a 2nd DVR from Comcast. At least I can return it at any time and change to something else while Tivo gets their heads screwed on straight.
     
  14. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    I missed your reply earlier. This makes more sense as to why I am getting the run around.

    I will check back on Thursday and see if they have act together yet.

    Thank you!
     
  15. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    Jan 2, 2004
    turns out a pricing change was in the wind

    http://www.zatznotfunny.com/2011-05...campaign=Feed:+ZatzNotFunny+(Zatz+Not+Funny!)


    600$ for a premiere full price is not bad for a first time buyer, but associating 20$ monthly to TiVo is a marketing death blow. Bet the guys that used to own Digeo are cursing their timing.
     
  16. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Agreed. I found that link after some searching and quite a few more sources on the web. Assuming they make the change this week I am going to place the order. Headed to Comcast today to see if they will let me pick up the cable card now.
     
  17. brshoemak

    brshoemak Member

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    Nov 27, 2010
    Keep in mind, some Comcast offices will not just give you a CableCard if you ask for one. Sometimes they will require a truck roll so someone can come out to give you a card, call a phone number to activate it then charge you for coming out. If they force you to do that, make sure you tell them to waive the truck roll fee and they should do it.

    Also, follow the advice to upgrade the hard drive in the unit - best decision I ever made. It is ridiculously easy if you have some PC hardware experience. I picked up a Western Digital 2TB Green Drive (WD20EARS) for $70, took out the old drive from the Tivo (which also happened to be a WD Green Drive), connected the old and new drives to my computer, ran a quick utility to prep the drive and copy the contents and that was it. If I ever need to send it for service I'll just throw the original drive back in it. Stupid amounts of storage - I currently have a good deal of content and 329 shows in my Deleted Item folder, all in HD.

    You can always buy a completed drive from some place online but either way I would recommend doing it - especially if you are looking at lifetime service.
     
  18. VideoRoy

    VideoRoy Member

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    May 17, 2011
    Houston, TX
    I was able to pick up the card at lunch no problem. It is currently $8.50/mo until I get rid of my current DVR but if Tivo works out well then I will end up with 2 eventually any way.

    Actually I work in technology and product development so storage and drive technology is part of the job. I have Linux workstations available so I am assuming I just need to partition and format the drive with ext3 or ext4? I will search around here since I am sure there are some guides to do this.

    Thanks for the drive model.
     
  19. Joe01880

    Joe01880 I love my TiVo

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    Feb 8, 2009
    Boston
    You can get a TiVo premiere from Electronics Expo for 65.93 with the dealsofamerica code. A 1TB HDD off ebay for 110, already formatted. ( if you get the Premiere vs the XL your going to want a larger HDD) and whats lifetime these days 399? So your looking at about $575 if your going to go Lifetime Service. You could op to pay for the year, 2 years or 3 years to go a little cheaper (arguably cheaper). Cheaper yet if you dont get the larger HDD. YMMV

    Edit; looks like you already pulled the trigger..enjoy!
     
  20. Joe01880

    Joe01880 I love my TiVo

    736
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    Feb 8, 2009
    Boston
    One thing to keep in mind. When you give up the CC box for the TiVo you will no longer get CC's On Demand services. Some folks dont think about that and for some its a deal breaker.
     

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