Should I buy an Ipad to watch Tivo Movies?

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by Bill Freyfogle, Apr 7, 2011.

  1. Apr 7, 2011 #1 of 35
    Bill Freyfogle

    Bill Freyfogle New Member

    14
    0
    Apr 29, 2002
    Bellevue, WA
    I have a Series III Tivo (also an original Series 1 from Feb 2001 that still works via the telephone line!). I was thinking of buying a new Ipad 2 and loading movies I recorded from my Tivo onto it. How well does it work? Do they come out in Hi Def?
    Thanks!
    Bill

    P.S. I am not very tech savvy, sorry!
     
  2. Apr 7, 2011 #2 of 35
    mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

    24,833
    566
    Apr 9, 2001
    sunnyvale
    AFAIK, you would have to transcode movies to play on the iPad.. I think that's slow.. (but e.g. you could have your computer do it while you weren't using it).

    Supposedly the Tivo iPad app will eventually have some support for series 3, but probably not streaming.
     
  3. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

    4,784
    163
    Feb 2, 2006
    Ellicott...
    Sure, if you like watching movies on an Etch-a-Sketch screen. Hi-Def is completely irrelevant on such a small screen. You'd never be able to see any difference between standard def and hi-def on an iPad. In fact, standard def is overkill for an iPad.

    It's fine if you do a lot of air travel and don't want to watch the in-flight movie. It may seem cool, but it's no way to watch a movie. Movies are meant to be enjoyed on the largest screen possible, not some dinky little display.

    The real question is, why are you asking us? If you like watching movies on a small screen then spend your money any way you like. Otherwise you'll get answers you may not want to hear from someone as opinionated as I am on the subject.;)
     
  4. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

    25,527
    2
    Jan 2, 2004
    pay 25 bucks for TiVo desktop plus and it will save movies in H264 you can watch on an iPad original or iPad 2 - it will make little difference which one.

    Sometimes Mr. Unnatural you just do not need that big screen experience
     
  5. smbaker

    smbaker Well-Known Member

    24,733
    1,923
    May 24, 2003
    Ipad2 has hdmi out capability with an optional adapter, which would also allow you to watch movies on a bigger screen, for example were you to take your ipad over to a different non-Tivo TV in your house or a TV at a friends house.
     
  6. fastcarr

    fastcarr New Member

    5
    0
    Dec 11, 2001
    Belleville, MI
    I'd like to see mr. unnatural carry a 42" plasma onto an airplane to watch movies. That would be hilarious!
     
  7. DeWitt

    DeWitt Member

    424
    0
    Jun 30, 2004
    Saratoga...
    I regularly load movies and shows onto my iPad for use when traveling. It works great and the quality is stunning. I use KMTTG with VideoRedo. Simple process. iTunes will synch them for you. Beats the selection of movies on the plane...
     
  8. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

    4,784
    163
    Feb 2, 2006
    Ellicott...
    The screen size is only part of the equation. Quality audio is also a must for optimum viewing pleasure. I never watch in-flight entertainment for two reasons - 1) because the screens are too damn small and the quality varies from one screen to the next (no two LCD screens on a plane look alike and none of them look good) and 2) the audio you get from the crappy headphones is almost impossible to hear with any clarity, even if you bring your own headphones onboard.

    FWIW, I just took a flight to the west coast a couple of weeks ago (actually, it was to Seattle near the OP's stomping grounds) and the guy sitting next to me had an iPad with movies loaded onto it. For the purpose of killing time and making the flight go faster, I could see the use for it. However, I couldn't stand using it on a regular basis for watching movies or recorded TV programs. It would be fine for any sort of talking head programs (news programs and such), but movies and other HDTV programs beg for the big screen. I'm used to watching video on a big screen with a quality surround system. I spend a lot of time in front of my HDTV so looking at a small screen seems like a total waste of time to me.

    I'm an A/V snob. I admit it. I have standards by which I watch movies and listen to audio. I've learned to appreciate the best I can afford. If others decide to settle for less then that's their choice. My opinions are my own and are not necessarily shared by everyone. Decide for yourself what's best for you.

    To the OP - I would not recommend getting an iPad for the sole purpose of watching TV or movies. However, there are far more uses for the iPad than just A/V entertainment. I would get the iPad for them and use it as a TV viewing screen only when the need arises, like the aforementioned air travel. I didn't think much of the iPad when it was first introduced but after seeing it in action on numerous occasions I can see the appeal. The only function I didn't find compelling was for TV viewing. Then again, if you enjoy watching video on a smart phone it could be a major step up.
     
  9. DeWitt

    DeWitt Member

    424
    0
    Jun 30, 2004
    Saratoga...
    I am an AV Snob as well, but on a long plane flight what choice do you have. A good pair of ear buds (I use Etymotic) solve the audio issues and also effectively block out cabin noise.
     
  10. janry

    janry New Member

    17,688
    1
    Jan 2, 2003
    Nashville, TN
    Is this the only reason you are considering buying an iPad? If so, it would be overkill IMO.
     
  11. jmemmott

    jmemmott New Member

    393
    0
    Jul 12, 2003
    Santa Cruz, CA
    Obviously your best solution depends on your own needs and biases but for me the Barnes and Noble Color Nook turned out to be a more balanced solution. I bought it primarily to be an ereader. However, the hardware supports a number of codecs including H.264 baseline up to 854 X 480 with AAC. I use kmttg to automate the entire conversion process from download through encode.

    Under the hood the NC runs Android 2.1. This means there is no Flash playback in the browser but the Tivo Remote app as well as the MyTivo, Netflix and You Tube websites are all useable while I am watching TV.

    Last I looked current pricing was in the $200 to $250 range.
     
  12. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

    4,784
    163
    Feb 2, 2006
    Ellicott...
    I have a free e-reader app on my smart phone (it's called Laputa) with an entire library of downloaded books. It serves me quite well on long flights. In fact, I look forward to the diversion as it's about the only time I have to spend reading books, except perhaps for what limited vacation I take during the year.
     
  13. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

    24,833
    566
    Apr 9, 2001
    sunnyvale
    Which doesn't negate anything I said.. it's still slow transcoding.
     
  14. WizarDru

    WizarDru New Member

    147
    0
    Jan 18, 2005
    Malvern, PA
    ...wait, you don't advocate watching video on a 10" 1024x768 screen but have no problem reading a book on a 3.5" screen for an entire flight? I'd wager your preferences are not really in the main.

    I wouldn't buy an iPad JUST to view TiVo videos, but it works for that purpose. Regrettably, you can no longer get VTC from the app store to view codecs that Apple didn't provide native support for. However, transferring videos into apple-friendly codecs is not hard and there are plenty of free programs to do it, if that's your desire. TiVo Desktop Plus will do it better than most, if you're willing to spend $25 for it.

    For Standard Definition television, the iPad is great. For HD television, you can down-convert it. And while Mr. Unnatural can't seem to notice any difference, I note a significant difference from say "John Adams" ripped from BluRay, "Scott Pilgrim vs. The World" from iTunes and an SD show ripped from TiVo or a download (or from some of WB's early digital media, ugh). Is it the ideal, when compared to watching on a large HD screen at home? No. But when you're on the daily train or on airplane or at the gym, it works just ducky. I know several people who have iPads who feel the same.

    I personally enjoy using it for Netflix, among many other things you can use it for. SD shows are quite watchable over 3G and look DVD quality over wifi. Even without network access, the iPad has lots of good games and other apps to pass the time. The Nookcolor also stands as one of the best of the iPad's competitors, presenting an inexpensive full color android tablet that also is a great ebook reader (I own a WIFI b/w nook, myself).

    Obviously this ultimately falls to how you feel about watching video on a 10" screen at slightly under 720p resolution. Me, I think it looks fine. YMMV.
     
  15. JPA2825

    JPA2825 Member

    429
    0
    May 15, 2000
    Ft. Thomas,...
    If you are a Mac devotee, iTiVo can pull from TiVo to Mac and then sync to iTunes for playback on iPad, iPhone, etc. Not a perfect solution and definitely a memory hog, but it works.

    In fact, I've even thought of recording the shows I usually watch on my iPhone in SD on the TiVo because the iTiVo transfer is so much faster for a smaller file and the quality output to the iPhone is the same.

    Do folks in the Mac world like KMTTG on the Mac?
     
  16. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

    24,833
    566
    Apr 9, 2001
    sunnyvale
    I used to use iTivo, since it has a more "Apple like" interface, and it downloads&decrypts in one step...

    but nowadays I have been using kmttg much more, since it does multiple things at once (e.g. even though it downloads then decrypts, while it's decrypting, it's started downloading the next item).

    Also kmttg seems to give me a *bit* more feedback about the connection to the Tivos.. (Even on a wired local network, I sure seem to have lots of weird problems with the Tivos not connecting)
     
  17. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    23,120
    1,093
    Jan 31, 2002
    Northern...
    That all depends on the PC you are using for transcoding. It doesn't take very long to trasncode HD recordings for my ZUne to play using a quad core Phenom or Core2Quad(the newer CPUs will be even faster). Plus TiVo Desktop will automatcially do it and it will also automatically sync with the Zune player. So if you used it on a regular basis, everything would be ready for you in the morning. You just grab it and go.

    I would think it would take even less time to trasncode to an iPad if you are transcoding to a higher resolution than what my Zune uses.
     
  18. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

    4,784
    163
    Feb 2, 2006
    Ellicott...
    You totally missed my point. I'd prefer to read a book on a larger screen but it's more convenient to use the smart phone. I like to travel light so I don't feel the need to drag an iPad or other larger display device with me on a plane.

    I watch a lot of TV shows and movies. As such, I prefer to watch them under the best conditions possible. I don't need to spend my off-hours watching video on a small screen when I can spend quality leisure time doing it under better circumstances. If I have a choice between watching video on a small screen with bad audio or on a big screen in a home theater environment, I'll opt for the big screen every time.
     
  19. WizarDru

    WizarDru New Member

    147
    0
    Jan 18, 2005
    Malvern, PA
    No, I understood your point, I just found it odd. I can understand not wanting to watch a video on a less than optimal screen...that's a personal preference. But I just find it bizarre that you don't mind reading a book on a tiny smartphone screen. I mean, what it really sounds like is that you don't view carrying any additional weight/bulk as acceptable. Which is fine, if that's your choice. I just don't think the average person would commit to the eye-straining habit of reading on a backlight smartphone screen versus an e-ink reader or an actual book. I mean, an iPad 2 weighs about 1.3 pounds, a kindle only 8.5 oz and an iPhone 4 about 4 oz. We're not talking bricks, here.

    And what most people have been pointing out is that the iPad is the ideal for watching video anywhere BESIDES your home system. I watch video on the train, at the gym, in the car (when I'm not driving, natch), at my in-laws, on my lunch hour, during business trips or any other time when I otherwise don't have access to a 43" HDTV.
     
  20. lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

    6,933
    10
    Aug 31, 2003
    San...
    Read a book. It's a much more rewarding experience in the first place.
     

Share This Page