What should I buy now, before TiVo has dual tuners?

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by Sussex Place, Feb 19, 2006.

  1. Sussex Place

    Sussex Place New Member

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    Please help a novice who is trying to figure out what to buy! We have Comcast and I got the box for Comcast DVR, but after a couple of weeks my husband disconnected it in frustration because (1) if I was recording something he couldn't watch something else (I didn't know at the time what a "single tuner/double tuner" issue was; and (2) half the time we couldn't figure out how to turn it on and get where we wanted to be. It was truly frustrating, but I am conviced I would like a device like TiVo. However, if it has only a single tuner it seems we will have the same problem with TiVo of not being able to record one program and watch another at the same time.

    So, what should I buy that gives me the TiVo experience I keep hearing is so great, but lets us record and watch different things at the same time?

    Thanks in advance for any advice you can give me. I don't understand half the things on this website except that there are a lot of people on here smarter than I am so I figure if anyone can help, you guys can!
     
  2. stevel

    stevel Dumb Blond TCF Club

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    Well, you can do what many people do. Split the cable signal, run one to your cable box and then TiVo and the other directly to the TV. If the TV supports CableCARD (has a slot for it), the you can rent a CableCARD from Comcast and use the TV to watch something while TiVo records something else. Otherwise you can watch any analog, unscrambled channel.

    You can also rent a second cable box just for the TiVo and then be able to watch all channels.
     
  3. HDTiVo

    HDTiVo Not so Senior Member

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    I'm curious how you managed to get a cable (Comcast) DVR with one tuner!
     
  4. Sussex Place

    Sussex Place New Member

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    Thank you -- but for someone like me who doesn't know how to "split the cable signal" and has an an old television so no CableCARD slot (I have no idea what that is, but my television is at least 15 years old so I imagine it doesn't have such a slot), and doesn't want to rent two cable boxes (my husband had such a bad experience with my Comcast DVR attempt I will be lucky to convice him to rent ONE box!), is there any option I can buy and plug in and have give me the TiVo experience I hope to get? (Eliminating the Comcast DVR problems we didn't like).

    Or, is the answer there is no such product now? Will the "Series 3" device I've seen mentioned in these forums be such a device?

    Obviously I am WAAAAAAY less technologically savvy than anyone else posting here and have no business on this forum except you guys sound like the experts and I knew you would know the answer.
     
  5. Sussex Place

    Sussex Place New Member

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    HDTiVo -- Comcast delivered the box and when I discovered we couldn't record and watch something different at the same time, I called Comcast and was told because I didn't ASK for a dual tuner box (I didn't know enough to ask for one) they delivered the single tuner because they have a lot of those on hand. They said the dual tuners were in high demand and not available everywhere....that they could check availability and I could drive fast to the location and see if was still there but there was no guarantee of that.

    However, even if I were to get a dual tuner box from Comcast now, the other problems we experienced would still be there. I was hoping TiVo was more user-friendly.
     
  6. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    the TiVo series 3 will be the answer to what you want but it will not be out until second half of 2006 and may cost 500 to 800 dollars.

    if you do not rent a dual tuner DVR from comcast or else rent a second cable box to hook up to a single tuner DVR as suggested above

    right now all the TiVo DVR models are single tuner
    what SteveL was trying to tell is - you have the black coax cable that comes from the wall. this currently hooks to the Cable box that has some other connection to the TV. you can go to lowes or radio shack or best buy, etc.. and get a small "splitter" it has a cox connection on one side for the cable from the wall and then two or more connections on the other side for a coax cable to the cable Box and then one to something else.

    What you can do with this is either
    1. one coax cable goes to the cable hook the DVR to the cable box and then the DVR to the TV. the other coax cable goes to the TV and it can then see the unscrambled channels (typically these are the channels under 99 and do NOT include premiums like Cinemax or pay per view)
    So the DVR can record everything but premium channels can only be seen via the DVR and if it is recording something else .......

    2. once coax cable goes to cbale box and cable box is hooked to TV - all premiums and so forth can be tuned at any time.
    the other coax cable is hooked to the DVR and it can record the channels under 99 only. hook the DVR up to the TV on some open TV input from the DVR.
     
  7. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    the dual tuner boxes from comcast are integrated - no cable boxes needed to record all channels (under 99, over 99) and you can watch one thing via DVR while recording another or record two things at once while having a cable box to watch "live TV"

    now the user interface is till what it is for comcast and it seems you had a pretty bad interface on the single tuner, which is no surprise. That is the advantage of TiVo with its very easy to use interface
     
  8. HDTiVo

    HDTiVo Not so Senior Member

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    Two other options:

    Later this year - perhaps close to the time the S3 is available - there will be a Comcast DVR (Dual Tuner) that runs TiVo software. Perhaps if the final product is done well, it will suit your needs at a reasonable cost.

    Call Comcast and say I want to downgrade my cable service to X (which costs $Y less per month) and return the single tuner DVR (an additional $Z monthly reduction in your bill.) Then see if you get transfered to a "customer retention" person and say something like "Gee, if you send someone to the house with a dual tuner DVR, and he hooks everything up and shows us how to use it, and there is no service charge, since we already paid to get the first DVR, then OK we'll keep our service as is." You end up with the user interface you don't like but get everything else for now. When the S3 or Comcast-TiVo come out you can switch.
     
  9. goony

    goony New Member

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    If you aren't tied to Comcast then the DirecTV/Tivos are an option - they have dual tuners.
     
  10. LifeIsABeach

    LifeIsABeach Active Member

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    If you are using coax from the cable box to TiVo and from TiVo to the TV then you can just put the TiVo in standby to watch one show while recording another.
     
  11. Dnamertz

    Dnamertz Active Member

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    Is that true that Comcast is actually going to start offering TiVo on their DVR's. If thats true, I just might switch from DirecTV.
     
  12. HDTiVo

    HDTiVo Not so Senior Member

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    Believe it or not that was one of my serious comments. :up:
     
  13. Dnamertz

    Dnamertz Active Member

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    Great, I might just switch back to Comcast since my one year commitment with DirecTV ends today. I'm just getting my first HDTV and its going to cost a lot of money to upgrade to a DirecTV HD-DVR with TiVo, plus they don't even broadcast my local channels in HD (Comcast does according to their web site). Comcast looks to be a lot cheaper to get set up with HD and if their adding TiVo service soon, then that would be great.

    One question, until they add TiVo, how is Comcast's own DVR? Does it have Season Pass or some of the other great features that the DirecTiVo has?

    Also, any idea what Comcast might charge per month for TiVo?
     
  14. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    the time and cost are unknown parts
    speculation is 4th quarter of 2006 and that Comcast will charge some premium over typical DVR rental fee.

    the software will be downloaded and run on the motorolla hardware that is the Comcast DVR today
     
  15. litzinger

    litzinger New Member

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    State...
    Thought I'd share this. I emailed Comcast asking about the Tivo...

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Comments: When is the Tivo-based DVR going to be available to Comcast
    customers? The only news I can find is your March 15, 2005 news
    release.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Thank you for contacting us regarding your Comcast cable service.

    Thank you for your patronage. This should become available within your
    area around july of this year. However, we do not guarantee that it
    will be out around this time.

    Sincerely,

    Bill
    Comcast Customer Care
     
  16. Sussex Place

    Sussex Place New Member

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    Feb 17, 2006
    Thanks to everyone for your great advice. I've decided to actually enter the current century and have bought a Sharp Aquos 37" LCD TV with cable card, Comcast is coming out to install the cable card and upgrade us to HD, and I've ordered the 80-hour TiVo Series 2 from the TiVo website and prepaid a year of service. During the next 12 months I'll learn TiVo, play around with trying the splitter thing you guys were so kind to try to walk me through, and let TiVo and Comcast figure out how to offer a dual-tuner easy interface experience at a reasonable cost, let them get some bugs out and enough units out there to see if they really work, and then I'll probably buy 2 of whatever looks best, add lifetime service if it's TiVo, and hopefully never watch another commercial again unless it's during the Super Bowl. And even those aren't that great anymore.

    We picked up the new TV last night, retiring the 15-year-old 26" model we had been using. The kids are beyond thrilled.

    Thanks to the people posting here who give so much help to those of us who need it!
     
  17. davezatz

    davezatz Funkadelic

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    Who going to be the bearer of bad news here? I ain't going do it...
     
  18. Sussex Place

    Sussex Place New Member

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    Feb 17, 2006
    Uh oh, what did I do wrong?
     
  19. stevel

    stevel Dumb Blond TCF Club

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    CableCARD and TiVo don't currently mix. You will need a cable box.
     
  20. Sussex Place

    Sussex Place New Member

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    Feb 17, 2006
    Oh. Well, earlier this comment was made: "If the TV supports CableCARD (has a slot for it), the you can rent a CableCARD from Comcast and use the TV to watch something while TiVo records something else."

    Then what does that mean?
     

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