TiVo Alternatives?

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by Saturn, Sep 21, 2019.

  1. Oct 14, 2019 #281 of 1017
    mschnebly

    mschnebly Well-Known Member

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    Same here. I have an tiny Intel NUC running jriver media server connected via iscsi to my NAS. Got a bunch of concert DVDs on there.
     
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  2. Oct 14, 2019 #282 of 1017
    mdavej

    mdavej Well-Known Member

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    Man, that's a pretty narrow requirement. Doesn't leave a lot of options. Whenever I change up the TV and tell the family how much money we're saving, they miraculously adapt. Funny how that works.

    In any case, AT&T TV NOW meets that requirement in most markets.
     
  3. Oct 14, 2019 #283 of 1017
    Pokemon_Dad

    Pokemon_Dad Ruler of Unown UI

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    Concert DVDs! Neil Young would love that. He has a new book out on this topic, by the way.

    The config here is a tiny Atom PC running LMS/Squeezebox Server, with Squeezebox-edo-DAC setups and Squeezelite apps around the house, approximating JRiver/Audirvana/Roon results. CDs ripped with dBpoweramp, downloads from HDtracks, and LMS plug-ins for Qobuz and Tidal.

    Left to themselves, the rest of the family uses Spotify and Apple Music...
     
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  4. Oct 14, 2019 #284 of 1017
    Pokemon_Dad

    Pokemon_Dad Ruler of Unown UI

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    Just kidding, I'm sure we'll evolve from there. But for starters I've taken on the challenge of replicating the TiVo/Comcast experience as closely as possible.

    All three TVs here are now either Insignia Fire TVs or have a Fire TV Stick 4K, and at some point I'm sure everyone will be cool with switching app tiles to go from local DVR to cloud DVR, just like we switch between Netflix and Prime right now. At the moment though the TVs default to their TiVo Mini units, which are invariably the last input selection.

    We may not save all that much money if we cut the cord, as our broadband will go up in price after cancelling cable, while we still have to add at least one more streaming service to get that cable news channel. But for me it's the principal of the thing.
     
  5. Oct 14, 2019 #285 of 1017
    wmcbrine

    wmcbrine Well-Known Mumbler

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    Well... they have DVRs that you can time-shift with, but not DVRs that you can archive with. That may be a niche interest (even I don't archive most stuff), but I'm in that niche. Also, the DVRs that come with the streaming services tend to have unskippable commercials in some contexts.
     
  6. Oct 14, 2019 #286 of 1017
    mdavej

    mdavej Well-Known Member

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    @Pokemon_Dad , Pluto has a lot of cable news channels for free, just not the one that rhymes with box. I'm not a fan, so Pluto is enough for me.

    Since streaming prices have risen to almost match cable in many cases, you'd actually be better off keeping what you've got and trying to negotiate a lower rate. You can usually get a discount if you threaten to walk. Just be prepared for them to call your bluff.
     
  7. Oct 14, 2019 #287 of 1017
    mdavej

    mdavej Well-Known Member

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    Good point. I'm not an archiver. So far, I've been able to skip all the commercials on my ATTVN recordings. Problem is that ATTVN plans and pricing for new subs are really terrible, and there really isn't a better alternative out there. Everybody else has gaping holes in their lineups.
     
  8. Oct 14, 2019 #288 of 1017
    Pokemon_Dad

    Pokemon_Dad Ruler of Unown UI

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    I've tried to watch something on Pluto, but their ads popped up far too often and far too randomly, chopping up the movie. And yes they don't carry any of the unbalanced news channels so that's a nonstarter here.

    And yes I tried bluffing Comcast before I was ready to truly walk. All the retention rep would offer was a move from our Double Play to a Triple Play that I'm sure would cost more eventually, while forcing on us their unreliable VOIP which we'd never use. I told the rep I'd start setting up OTA instead, but she didn't know what I meant and my Tagalog is a little rusty.

    I think the best transitional step will be to drop to the basic cable level in a cheaper Double Play as soon as we've picked a streaming service for the news channels.
     
  9. Oct 14, 2019 #289 of 1017
    spiderpumpkin

    spiderpumpkin Say no to Hydra!

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    Channels DVR has enabled TV Everywhere NBC, Fox and ABC for users in certain areas. I get NBC and Fox and it works great.

    Channels DVR now supports Locast for certain cities or VPN to set up. Works great so far!!!
     
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  10. Oct 14, 2019 #290 of 1017
    Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    That would be something. It also depends on what satellite(s) they keep using, and how many channels still exist at that point. I'd guess that 61/72.5/95/129 would be abandoned when they run out of fuel, and everything would condense into 99c/101/103c/110/119.
     
  11. Oct 14, 2019 #291 of 1017
    tenthplanet

    tenthplanet Well-Known Member

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    If Amazon wants the market they will be.
     
  12. Oct 14, 2019 #292 of 1017
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    I'm not as familiar with the sats as you but, generally speaking, the DTV fleet is very much superior, right? It has more overall capacity and, thanks to the recent launch of T16, will have a longer useable lifespan too. (As the number of channels and subscribers dwindle, it's plausible that the final years of DBS TV in the US could be delivered using a smaller number of surviving sats.) Combine that with the fact that DTV already has about 50% more subscribers than DISH and it's a cinch to think that all new installations going forward would use dishes pointed at the DTV fleet.

    As far as receivers/DVRs, well, that could be either. No reason why the existing Hopper line couldn't be tweaked (maybe just new firmware?) to work with otherwise DTV-native CPE. I only suggest that that's the route they'd go given that the Hopper is much more advanced at this point than the aging Genie. Hopper has more tuners, has the AutoHop feature, and has built-in apps for Netflix and YouTube. At this point, I don't really see AT&T interested enough in DTV to invest in new CPE for it. There's still a chance, though, that they'll upgrade the firmware on the HS17 (or roll out an updated HS27) to allow it to work with the same C71 Android TV box that they're deploying for AT&T TV. But I just question whether, at this point, they want to reserve that box as a special feature of AT&T TV. Remember, if you have home broadband, they want you on AT&T TV, not DTV. And what use are all those Android TV apps and Google Assistant on the C71 if you don't have broadband?
     
  13. Oct 14, 2019 #293 of 1017
    wizwor

    wizwor Guest

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    Define 'The Market'. Amazon has imposed restrictions on Recast owners which are uncommon. The quality of the stream is not as good as alternatives. I'm not sure what Amazon is planning, but they have not won me over. I say that as a Recast owner with a half dozen 4k FTV sticks and seven Echo Shows.
     
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  14. Oct 14, 2019 #294 of 1017
    tenthplanet

    tenthplanet Well-Known Member

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    The market is fast, cheap, turnkey any of the alternatives that don't realize this will be gone within 5 years. Most people don't want TV as a hobby, they just want to watch it.
     
  15. Oct 14, 2019 #295 of 1017
    wizwor

    wizwor Guest

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    I'm already there. Right now, that market is TiVo. I have not yet sampled an OTT solution that provided satisfactory local channels. Nothing but a premium provider (cable, satellite, FiOS) will satisfy the sports enthusiast. You are going to have to be a hobbyist to support OTT infrastructure. Just as I said ATSC 3.0 would not obsolete TiVo in five years three years ago, I am assuring you that Amazon will not vanquish TiVo in five years and that Roku will never vanquish anyone.

    Go ahead and experiment, but it's too early to put your TiVos in ebay.
     
  16. Oct 14, 2019 #296 of 1017
    mdavej

    mdavej Well-Known Member

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    Newsmax isn't "unbalanced" (right-wing) enough for you?
     
  17. Oct 14, 2019 #297 of 1017
    Pokemon_Dad

    Pokemon_Dad Ruler of Unown UI

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    :) Never heard of it. Seriously.
     
  18. Oct 14, 2019 #298 of 1017
    Pokemon_Dad

    Pokemon_Dad Ruler of Unown UI

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    I was in a Best Buy today for other reasons, but had some fun inquiring about OTA stuff. They had a Recast and a Tablo on the shelf, and empty spots for at least one HD HomeRun model. The saleskid thought they were satellite boxes. When I explained what they were he didn't seem to understand, but volunteered that they required a similar subscription. I explained the differences there too, and also educated him a bit on outdoor antennas and amplifiers.

    This is not unusual of course, no matter what product, no matter which big box retail chain, anywhere in the world. You have to do your own research before you go. I sometimes get better information from a few of the staff inside the high-end Magnolia AV shops within Best Buy. But certainly not all of the staff in there either. One of the Magnolia shops here recently had a handwritten sign up advertising a sale for "Audiofiles". :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2019
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  19. Oct 14, 2019 #299 of 1017
    mdavej

    mdavej Well-Known Member

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    Not sure how you missed if you tried Pluto already. I counted over a dozen news channels from both ends of the spectrum. Extremely unbalanced. You'll want to join the skinheads after 5 minutes of Newsmax.
     
  20. Oct 15, 2019 #300 of 1017
    Pokemon_Dad

    Pokemon_Dad Ruler of Unown UI

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    I found the Pluto interface visually noisy and distracting, and that was even before the commercials hit. I tried to watch one free movie but did not finish watching it due to all the interruptions. I remember seeing CNN in the list, but no other news or opinion channels I recognized, not that I remember much at all really. Just that it was not for me.
     

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