Unable to transfer shows to my computer, is Hauppauge PVR a solution?

Discussion in 'TiVo Premiere DVRs' started by venturebro, Jun 25, 2011.

  1. venturebro

    venturebro New Member

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    Jun 25, 2011

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    I've tried using every available software to transfer content from my TiVo Premiere to my Mac and have had no luck, everything appears to be locked so I can't transfer it to my hard drive. I'm forced into using Time Warner cable service in my area and they encrypt EVERYTHING, even free broadcast channels!

    I've read about hardware hacks but I'm not about to do anything that serious when all I want is to transfer a couple of shows that are not available for download (legally) to my iPod and portable media player.

    I'm now looking into hardware that might let me capture content from TiVo and have read mixed reviews on several products, I've narrowed my search down to the Hauppauge HD PVR and wanted to know if anyone has any opinion (good or bad) on this product. I know it won't create true HD recordings, I don't care so much that using the component output means the digital signal will be converted to analog as long as the final result is better than that of standard composite 480p. Does anyone know if the Hauppauge creates better quality than that?

    I've crossed two products off my list, Blackmagic Design Video Recorder (will not work with recording software other than the one it comes bundled with and will not capture copy protected video) and Elgato EyeTV HD (seems kind of bloated with features and has received very mixed reviews), I've read Hauppauge will work with other video software and appears to be a simple enough product to use, but does it capture protected content?

    Any help would be very much appreciated, I'm going on week three of trying to find a simple and inexpensive solution to this problem.
     
  2. ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay TCF Club

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    Go to your Tivo System Information screen, and look for TiVoToGo:, should say a,a,a

    If not, then transfers were not enabled.

    To enable, you need to login to your tivo.com account, under DVR Preferences, there are check boxes for transfers and downloads, check them. Then have Tivo connect and wait a few hrs. You should be able to get a Media Access Key.
     
  3. venturebro

    venturebro New Member

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    Jun 25, 2011
    Thanks for the tip ThAbtO, the transfers and downloads option was activated when I first got the TiVo a few weeks ago and the system information shows that it's set to a,a,a, unfortunately I'm not able to transfer any of the DVRs content using software due to Time Warner Cable being copyright happy and making it impossible to do so. I'm thinking I might have to buy hardware that will connect the TiVo to my computer and capture the content instead.
     
  4. ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay TCF Club

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    If the Cable Co had set the Copy Protection flag, then there is nothing you can do to transfer the recording, except to record via a DVD/VCR Recorder, but you may run into another problem caused by macrovision.

    Depending on which cable co, they may set the CP flag on any/all/none of the channels. The cable card may be involved in setting the CP flag and removing it will remove most, if not all, of the channels.

    I use OTA/antenna and never will run into the CP flag.
     
  5. Wil

    Wil Unknown Member

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    Your post indicates you know the problem is the cable company. Not exactly encryption, but they've put you dead in the water anyway.

    The Haup unit is fine; you'll get true HiDef, not sure where you're coming from there. Yes there will be compression if that's what you mean, but generally I'd say you're going to see good results from HiDef sources, better than 420p. I've had one for a couple of years and I have no problem with it. You get some glitches sometimes, and it's real-time. Pretty much last century methodology.

    But here's the thing. You're violating the mainstream understanding of what is permitted by law. Untested law admittedly, but there you are. Since you're already an outlaw in your heart, all the stuff you have subscribed to legitimately and simply want to MRV or To-Go is available from "nefarious sources" at pretty decent quality.

    You may want to consider this quicker, easier and more convenient way to (perhaps) break the law. Again, my comments are based on your statement that you have already legitimately subscribed to this content and just want access to the fair use of that content that has been denied by your cable provider (likely with no demand or even consent of the actual rights holder).
     
  6. jcthorne

    jcthorne Well-Known Member

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    Yes an analog HD video capture card will allow you to transfer recordings from tivo to PC one at a time, in real time as you ask. As Wil has suggested, there are better ways to accomplish the end goal. As you are moving outside the letter of the law, there will be far less help along the way. No step by step guides although I am sure some folks here can offer some pointers in that direction if you should decide to. Suggest asking over in the Home Media Features forum section to be on topic.
     
  7. venturebro

    venturebro New Member

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    Jun 25, 2011
    Thanks for all the feedback...

    ThAbtO, I do believe the CableCard is the source of the problem since content from all channels, even free over the air channels, appear locked so recorded content can't be transferred from TiVo. I had a Sony DVD recorder which did the trick but it has since stopped working, I am consider buying a new one as a solution. Of course it wasn't HD quality but if all else fails that might be the way to go.

    I think I'll try the Hauppauge PVR first though. As Wil pointed out, the Hauppauge will give me better quality plus it seems like a shorter process than using the DVD recorder to make a copy of a show in real time and then have to go through the extra step of converting it to a digital video file. If that gives me any problems I'll just return it and get the DVD recorder instead.

    I know there are various "other" methods of acquiring TV shows by way of the internet, but the shows I want to transfer are not available by those means either so capturing it from my TiVo is the only alternative. Seems pretty unfair that I can't use TiVo's transfer feature considering Time Warner has almost doubled their subscription fees in the past few months meaning I'm now paying a pretty penny every month to access content which I can't even keep for my own personal use. Not to mention, there are only about 5 cable channels I watch with the other 995 channels I'm paying for being completely useless to me.

    I understand locking content from premium channels like HBO and Showtime, but locking everything, even free over the air channels, seems excessive and I'm sure it's some sort of violation on their part.

    Anyhow, thanks again for all the feedback, I very much appreciate it!
     
  8. L David Matheny

    L David Matheny Active Member

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    Is there any chance that you could receive those (mostly OTA) programs by installing an antenna? You would have better quality (less compression) and no copy protection. And if you could "cut the cord" you could save money.
     
  9. venturebro

    venturebro New Member

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    The programs I want to transfer are from the National Geographic channel which is not available over the air. Unfortunately they don't provide legal digital downloads of their documentaries either.

    I could use an antenna to record programs from "free" OTA channels, but there's not much on regular TV I would want to keep. And I use the term "free" loosely because because with cable you're paying for free OTA channels as well. Rip off.

    If more of the channels I watch made their programming available for download, I wouldn't think twice about cutting off my cable service. I know technically I do have the shows available to watch whenever I want via the DVR, but I like the option of being able to have it on any devise I own.
     
  10. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

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    Recording the content in realtime will be very time consuming. But certainly doable.
     
  11. venturebro

    venturebro New Member

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    I have no problem with the time factor as long as I'm able to get a good quality transfer of the shows. :)

    It's just a shame my cable service won't let me take advantage of TiVo's video transfer feature which of course would have been better all around.
     
  12. ljiminez

    ljiminez New Member

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    Since you are looking to get your recordings to a portable device I would suggest a Slingbox Solo, and the Jaksta Recorder for Slingbox.
     
  13. DeniseAck

    DeniseAck New Member

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    I'm also frustrated by the copy protection inhibiting me from transferring the shows easily to my pc. I now use a Diamond VC500 One Touch Video Capture Device ($35). It's a pain that it records in real time, so transferring a whole season of something takes a loooong time, but it's cheap and easy. It records in MPEG and I can then edit out commercials etc. in Adobe Premiere or Windows Movie Maker.
     

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