• Welcome to The Audio Annex! If you have any trouble logging in or signing up, please contact 'admin - at - theaudioannex.com'. Enjoy!
  • HTTPS (secure web browser connection) has been enabled - just add "https://" to the start of the URL in your address bar, e.g. "https://theaudioannex.com/forum/"
  • Congratulations! If you're seeing this notice, it means you're connected to the new server. Go ahead and post as usual, enjoy!
  • I've just upgraded the forum software to Xenforo 2.0. Please let me know if you have any problems with it. I'm still working on installing styles... coming soon.

Looking for a HD DVR without monthy fees

nelmr

Active Member
...and it seems my choices are limited. I noticed a company called Moxi that sells them but they are $600. For that price I would rather build a HTPC. (side note, how reliable is the HTPC option, what happens if the PC reboots for updates, or crashes, etc...)

Are there any other "TIVO" like devices that don't charge a monthly fee for the schedule? I currently have my tv service over fiber optic. We have over 300 channels but I find that I rarely watch the non-local channels, and only the ones in HD. For some of the other shows that we would miss, I don't mind picking up the Blu Ray disks at the end of the season. I just can't justify spending so much for TV anymore.

So what options do I have?

Requirements:
1) must be HD
2) must support QAM and ATSC signals (so I can subscribe to just basic cable or use OTA)
3) must have TV schedule w/o a fee
4) must record at least two shows at once
 

Towen7

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Moderator
I decided to completely cut my cable service (except for internet) and found myself in exactly the same boat. Hulu+ and Netflix are fine but we wanted to be able to record some programs that aren't on either. I didn't want to pay a subscription fee to Tivo, or have the the family deal with the hassel of using an HTPC so I added a $150 tuner card to my PC and an Xbox 360 to the TV. With the built-in edition of Windows Media Center I can schedule and manage recordings. The XBOX can run in Media Center mode and access live and recorded TV from the computer as well as scheduling and manageing recordings. I get the added benefit of a full listing guide and being able to access my music and pictures in the living room. Oh yeah... It plays games too.

The card I bought has two QAM/ATSC tuners and two individual encoders. It came with an Windows Media Center remote and an IR blaster/receiver. With this setup I can watch TV on the computer upstairs while the TV downstairs is watching live or recorded TV. I could add an additional card (because WMC supports upto 4 tuners) but so far I haven't needed more than two.

You can configure the Xbox to automatically launch Windows Media Center when it's turned on and program your universal remote to handle the controls. I have mine wired to the network using a ethernet-over-powerline adapter but the Xboxc has built-in wifi too.

It's not perfect. The Xbox takeas about 30 seconds to start-up and load Media Center. And remote is sometimes a little slow to respond but it sure beats having to pay the cable company or TIVO.

 

Towen7

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Moderator
Another option is ChannelMaster sells an OTA DVR for ~$350. It doesn't meet all of your prerequsites as it doesn't work with cable. I bought one just in case the Windows Media Center plan didn't work in practice but I never took it out of the box and returned it. It cost the same amount I spent on the tuner card and Xbox combined but I get a LOT more functionality.

 

The DirtMerchant

Well-Known Member
Towen7 said:
I decided to completely cut my cable service (except for internet) and found myself in exactly the same boat. Hulu+ and Netflix are fine but we wanted to be able to record some programs that aren't on either. I didn't want to pay a subscription fee to Tivo, or have the the family deal with the hassel of using an HTPC so I added a $150 tuner card to my PC and an Xbox 360 to the TV. With the built-in edition of Windows Media Center I can schedule and manage recordings. The XBOX can run in Media Center mode and access live and recorded TV from the computer as well as scheduling and manageing recordings. I get the added benefit of a full listing guide and being able to access my music and pictures in the living room. Oh yeah... It plays games too.

The card I bought has two QAM/ATSC tuners and two individual encoders. It came with an Windows Media Center remote and an IR blaster/receiver. With this setup I can watch TV on the computer upstairs while the TV downstairs is watching live or recorded TV. I could add an additional card (because WMC supports upto 4 tuners) but so far I haven't needed more than two.

You can configure the Xbox to automatically launch Windows Media Center when it's turned on and program your universal remote to handle the controls. I have mine wired to the network using a ethernet-over-powerline adapter but the Xboxc has built-in wifi too.

It's not perfect. The Xbox takeas about 30 seconds to start-up and load Media Center. And remote is sometimes a little slow to respond but it sure beats having to pay the cable company or TIVO.

So you get your TV signal via OTA antenna? Movies are through Netflix? Interesting.
 
Top