TiVo Series 2 + TiVo service - A dissapointment!

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by WillRegister, Jan 20, 2006.

  1. WillRegister

    WillRegister New Member

    Jan 5, 2006


    I have recently moved in with my Fiancee who has a Directv Tivo, which I was thoroughly impressed with. When visiting various people I was told about and shown the networking capability of the Series 2, which also impressed me. So imagine my delight when on Christams day I unwrapped a Series 2 all of my very own :)

    This is where the downside of it all started to show its face.

    You can have either two tuners OR network capability, NOT both.
    Directv offers two tuners, GREAT, this is what I want. The ability to watch one channel and record another. Surely this is a major plus for a DVR, isnt that what we used VCR's for??

    Networking with the Series 2, oh, I almost forgot, this is where you have to pay TiVo $12.95 a month just to use the box. First you pay for a box, then you cant use it without paying TiVo a monthly fee, did I forget to mention that with Directv you can run as many DVR's as you want for only $5.99 a month, HALF the price of TiVo for the same service. I am confused, someone is making money out of me.....

    But not being one not to give up I paid out another 50 bucks for a wireless adapter, the costs are adding up here!

    Next problem, I am a Mac user, oh no, TiVo dont have a current version of Desktop for the latest release of the OS, older ones but not the most up to date. Maybe the developers got upset by the old rumours of Apple buying TiVo?
    Anyway, a quick Google and I eventually get it up and running, I must say that it was a breeeze on the XP machine my fiancee has :)

    Being of the modern age I also have an iPod, and have over time religiously ripped all my music to AAC, toted as better compression than MP3 => More music in less space. As well as buying from the iTunes website, its all so easy and integrated with Apple, bare in mind I work in the software industry (PC) and am fairly capable, no beginner.
    So I have 20GB of music that I cant play without converting it all to MP3 and doing some daft time wasting stuff to be able to listen to my purchased tracks.
    COME ON TIVO OFFER FULL SUPPORT FOR ITUNES, THE MARKET SHARE FIGURES DONT LIE! iTunes is the biggest online download service there is and it isnt supported, this is madness.

    So i have done a deal with my fiancee, the TiVo was a great thought but not well researched. The deal is this, until we move house we pay TiVo the monthly fee, if by that time we decide we use the networking features she can keep the box and do with it what she wants, remember it was my christmas present, sorry if I seem a little ungrateful, but I have been really dissapointed.
    When we move I am getting HD Directv with dual tuners, (and TiVo DVR functionality for $6 a month, this covers any other we use too). Then I will look at some form of iPod solution, an iPod video and dock, all my music and pictures, plus I can take thme with me, all at a similar price too, but no monthly fee.

    Anyway, I think that the Directv offering is far superior, after all how often do you really browse photos on the TV, this is a gimic. As for music I already have the ability to wirelessly stream anything in my library to my stereo, with no converting of files.

    If you are still with me at this point, this is the end of my rant and well done to you. I am up on technology and very disheartened with my expirience. Thanks for reading.
  2. Stainless Steele

    Stainless Steele Wake-Maker!

    Feb 2, 2004
    Columbus, OH
    The Tivo Series 3 will have the best of both worlds...we have ALL been waitng a long time for this!!!!!!
  3. Aflat

    Aflat Member

    Aug 29, 2005
    There are a few apps you can use to play your native AAC files over Tivo. Just do a google on iTunes and Tivo and you should hit something. I haven't used them myself, but have seen a couple in action, and it was as simple as installing it, and pointing it to your music.

    This was windows only of course.
  4. TriBruin

    TriBruin Well-Known Member TCF Club

    Dec 10, 2003
    Bartlett, IL
    I am not trying to be rude, but did you do ANY research on Tivo before you purchased it? All of your complaints are well documented and easily identified ahead of time.

    The ability to watch two programs on DirectTV is completely different technology wise than the Series 2. The Series 2 has only one turner. Almost everybody uses a cable splitter to split the cable feed, one to the Tivo, one directly to the TV. You can easily watch one show while another is recording.

    Monthly Fee Required is listed on every box. Make sure you read the small print. If you buy a second Tivo, the second is only $6.95 per month.

    Better than tying up your telephone every other night. Plus you you have the ability to schedule your recording on the web up to 30 minutes before the show starts. Plus if you every get a 2nd Tivo, the ability to move shows between Tivos is worth the price!

    Yep, no Mac support for TivoToGo. Bad Tivo. A best I can understand the DRM method Tivo currently uses is strictly Windows based. They can NOT use the same method on the Mac. I think we would all like Tivo to use a standard like MP4, but this would cause huge legal problems for Tivo. They will also need to have some form of DRM.

    Tivo has stated that they expect Mac support sometime this year. I suspect that the changes they are making to allow transfer of programs to iPod and PSP will also allow the development of Mac based TivoToGo.

    Sorry this isn't a Tivo problem. This is an Apple (read:Steve Job's ego) problem. Until Apple allows 3rd party vendors to play Protected AAC files you will never be able to play purchased iTunes anywhere but iTunes and the iPod.

    I am sorry to hear that the Tivo experience is not what you expected. You have many of the same complaints that others have had. However, there is always going to be a comprimise to what you buy. DirectTVs contract with Tivo runs out very soon (2007?). DTV is pushing a non-Tivo version of their DVR. I don't have any experience with it, but, in general, most DVRs pale in usabilty to Tivo.
  5. Graymalkin

    Graymalkin Grumpy Poster

    Mar 20, 2001


    Can't really fault TiVo for not being able to play AAC files. That was Apple's decision. How many non-Apple products can play AAC files?

    You're paying $12.95 for the guide data and vastly superior guide software. Don't think part of your DirecTV (or cable) service isn't going toward its guide data and software. You *could* buy a lifetime subscription for the Series 2, for $299. After 23 months, it's paid for itself.

    Series 2 works with a variety of inputs: OTA, cable, satellite. DirecTiVo works with DirecTV, and that's it. Comcast DVR works with Comcast, and that's it.

    And like a previous poster has mentioned, the Series 3 will have double tuners and CableCard, which puts it back on equal footing with cable DVRs.
  6. MickeS

    MickeS Active Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    I like to have everything as MP3 (I even convert all my DRM AAC files to this), just because it's a universal format that any music player can handle. I can't fault TiVo for going with the one format that 100% of all music hardware and software can handle.

    As for the rest, too bad. Not sure what else to say, but it's hard to feel sympathy when someone has done zero research.
  7. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

    Jan 2, 2004
    Did any one read that she got the TiVo series 2 for Christmas ??

    anyhow - as for two tuners follow the link in my signature on what the sereis 3 will do and how it is not possible for stand alone DVR like TiVo that can not directly get the digital signal to have two easily working tuners that will both record the digital siganl and thus get HD as well.
    Also you will see why TiVo can not make a two tuner series 3 box that works with satellite companies like DirectTV or DISH.

    I send 45$ a month to my cabale company becausee I do not get digital cable myself. If I wanted their DVR I would have to send them an extra 35$ a month total as I have to go digital to get the DVR. So everyone wants a piece of the pie and yes the DirectTV TiVo DVR is just 5$ extra but I bet you send them just a bit more than that for the total package. easy to build costs into other places and make things look like a deal in such a case.

    also I agree with others above that Apple has a role to play in the troubles TiVo has had keeping Mac support at the high level TiVo had been doing for a while. But take heart - TiVo has made some changes and has stated they will have Mac support for the full desktop including TiVoToGo in mid 2006. But check into those workl arounds for supporting ACC files. I do not think Apple is letting go of fairPlay anytime soon.

    so keep working that Series 2. Some more reading here and getting used to what the series 2 is and you will find the ways to do what you want. and in second half of 2006 you will have the option to go with a Series 3 and it should have support for Mac as well.
  8. WillRegister

    WillRegister New Member

    Jan 5, 2006
    Guys, I take on board all that you say. With regards to zero research, I have no idea. This was a surprise Christmas present, I very quickly realised that it may not be what I wanted, even before I opened the box......

    With regards to the TiVo software/UI/service, what I have seen is good, but I haven't used any others so I cant really comment on whether it is superior or not.

    Just having a rant really and take feedback as it is meant. :)

    EDIT: ZeoTivo, our posts cross. I take note of what you say, I am sticking with it and giving it a try. At the moment my expectations are low, so hopefully it can work some magic on me.
  9. bomberjim

    bomberjim Member

    Aug 30, 2003
    Rapid City...
  10. dgh

    dgh New Member

    Jul 24, 2000
    A Series 2 stand-alone is equivalent to a VCR in the ability to watch one thing while recording another. A DirecTiVo is equivalent to 2 VCRs, each with their own satellite tuner all in one box.

    As for "we", surveys show that most people have never successfully time-shifted a show on a VCR and many are unaware that they have a record capability.
  11. smak

    smak TV MA SLV

    Feb 11, 2000
    NoHo, CA USA
    Ah tivo, the gift that keeps on taking :)

  12. jsmeeker

    jsmeeker Notable Member TCF Club

    Apr 2, 2001

    AAC isn't Apple's format, so anyone can create software and.or a box to play them. And they do. Now, AAC files from iTunes Music Store? That's a different story. The Apple DRM (FairPlay) is not currently licensed out to anyone else, unfortunately.
  13. samo

    samo New Member

    Oct 7, 1999
    I don't know what you get, but your analog cable package probably has about 60 channels plus locals. Comparable package on DirecTV is $30/month +$5 PVR fee and on Dish is $32/month including PVR fee. Even Total Choice on DirecTV is $42/month +PVR fee - still less that what you pay for cable + TiVo. And if you order Total Choice you get free install and free (after rebate) DVR. And yes, you can still get DirecTivo if you buy it from B&M or online stores. I just switched to Direct couple of months ago and I got 2 DirecTiVos a one R-15 system installed for total out of pocket of about $100. Not bad for 6 tuners and if I didn't subscribe to premiums and international channels - just Total Choice (135 channels + locals) my total bill would have been $42 + $5 + $10 (for 2 additional IRDs)= $57 or $1 less compare to what you pay for analog cable with just one tuner TiVo.
  14. ThreeSoFar

    ThreeSoFar FourNow...WaitFive

    May 24, 2002
    Four Series 2 standalone TiVos, four tuners, no conflicts.

    Planning on selling two or three of them when I get an HDTiVo or two.
  15. bidger

    bidger Active Member

    Mar 30, 2001
    Elmira, NY
    Four separate accounts as well, $33.80/mo. if the first unit isn't Lifetime, $20.85/mo plus an upfront charge of $299 if it is. I get four tuners, two of them HD, for $4.99/mo. in mirroring fee plus a $199 Lifetime Service investment back in March of 2001.
  16. Billy66

    Billy66 Again with shoelaces

    Dec 15, 2003
    But Bidger, you can't look at your pictures on it. :p
  17. ThreeSoFar

    ThreeSoFar FourNow...WaitFive

    May 24, 2002
    We use the Series 2 features quite a bit.

    All are lifetime'd. As were the three we owned before these, which sold for a grand total of $1100, though each had a hard drive upgrade which cost about $50 per unit, net.

    My net cost of the lifetime subscription after resale is -$12 or so. A bargain.

    Our old house couldn't see the DTV satellites, or I probably would have gone the DTiVo route long ago. In which case I'd be one of the ones anxiously awaiting the HD CableCard TiVos coming out to dump DTV and switch to.
  18. bidger

    bidger Active Member

    Mar 30, 2001
    Elmira, NY
    I can understand the strategy of the 3 Lifetime units, not sure how the S3 will influence resale values since we're still 3 years away from the digital switch over, but I think you'd have to admit it's not something the average consumer can emulate. When you do get the S3 you'll see why those of us who've been using it for years consider dual tuners an essential feature of a DVR.
  19. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    As for the first point, you didn't use VCRs for that. You can do exactly the same as what you can do with VCRs -- use the recorder (Tivo now, VCR in the past) as one tuner, AND THE TV'S TUNER for the other thing. I don't quite understand why many people seem to have been able to do this with VCRs but can't do the EXACT SAME THING with Tivos. The only difference is that there's no equivalent of a "VCR/TV" button on the remote. However, even with VCRs, it's best to split the cable to use the TV's internal tuner that way.. (I do it that way so I can watch the Tivos in PIP while a commercial is on, for the relatively rare times I watch something live -- usually since my Tivos are already recording..)

    As for the second point, get a lifetime subscription and you will have no monthly fees. I did that day 1.
  20. MickeS

    MickeS Active Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    Not on the remote, but the "Standby" function does the same thing. I'm a little surprised that such a button is not on the remote, it would make it a little more obvious.

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