ReplayTV or Tivo? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 10-01-2003, 09:36 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm looking at getting one of these and was wondering which is better? I'm looking at the ReplayTV 5040 or the Tivo series 2. I know that replay has Commercial advance but I've heard that Tivo is an yeasier interface, but again I heard/read that replay has a better picture. Any suggestions? I've also heard about nightmares with build quality on Replay TV and they did go bankrupt once and were bought out. Thanks for any light you can shed on my dillema. Thanks.

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post #2 of 18 Old 10-07-2003, 02:00 PM
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I bought a Replay 5040 last month for $150 and love it. I haven't had any problems with it like you read on the forums here. Plus Replay just came out with a new software upgrade yesterday with new features and fixes problems. I chose Replay so that I can use my pc, to store movies and shows on and burn to DVD, which I did last night for the first time, eliminating the need for a larger HD in the unit.
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post #3 of 18 Old 10-11-2003, 05:20 PM
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Also ReplayTV service fee is cheaper.

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post #4 of 18 Old 10-12-2003, 10:51 AM
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either one will be fine. picture quality depends a lot on the input souce. if i had to choose i would go with rtv.

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post #5 of 18 Old 10-16-2003, 10:17 AM
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I have a Replay 4080 and have never had any problems with it. It worked great with my (analog, no box) cable, and now that I have DirecTV - it still works fine and can control my Samsung receiver via the IR blaster. But, I have also just ordered a DirectDVR (Tivo) from DirecTV - 1) because they have a great deal for a 35-hour unit - and 2) supposedly you are able to record 2 programs at once while watching a third channel. Something you cannot do on a Replay machine at this time. I can't judge the Tivo performance yet because I don't have the box yet. Like I said, I love my Replay, and wish they had better integration with DirecTV. If they come out with a DTV box, I may get one of those - maybe I'll wait for HDTV.
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post #6 of 18 Old 10-16-2003, 12:10 PM
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A popular debate - I can't resist weighing in.

I've purchased both - an RTV for myself and a TIVO for my folks. My folks wanted a VCR replacement (though so much more!) and the TIVO fits the bill very well. The interface is a bit friendlier, and they've never had a problem - it was plug and play.

I got an RTV for myself because I wanted the higher capacity (I bought the 160 hour unit) and the networking capability (at that time TIVO had none). I've had my share of problems with the RTV, but have fixed them all - the biggest headache was the nightly dialup via modem. Now that that is fixed (I now use the network to dial in) there's no choice for me - I'd stick with the RTV. I love their (free) networking, I think the picture *is* better, I love the third-party software that others have written (especially DVArchive), and commercial advance is the (thick) icing on the cake.

In short, I'd say if you have a home network and don't mind (or enjoy) occasionally getting your hands dirty, go with Replay. If you want no-hassle, no flash, go with TIVO. They're both good.
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post #7 of 18 Old 10-25-2003, 04:05 PM
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Thanks to DaJoos for the objective response. I was searching for just such a comparison and your reply was extremely helpful. Now I have to figure out whether I want plug and play or getting my hands dirty!
I DO want that thick icing on the cake!

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post #8 of 18 Old 10-27-2003, 08:49 PM
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I started with a Tivo...love it (no problems). Gave it to my wife for the bedroom and bought the 160 hour version of replay. I had lots of problems with it in the beginning (old software). It's all fixed now and everything works super good. A little better quality...commercial advance...networking....computer interface...etc. My take is they both do a great job, but the replay gives you space to grow in the networking areas. If you do not use it at first, but plan to ad it later...the replay is the answer. If your looking for total simplicity, simple interface and few to no problems...buy Tivo.....Have fun...they are both great.

Best regards.

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post #9 of 18 Old 10-28-2003, 02:28 PM
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Those of you that have upgraded your Tivo's and replays. Did you use standard PC compatabile stuff, was it something a lay person could do
with a phillips head screw driver and a few hours of spare time?

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post #10 of 18 Old 10-28-2003, 02:49 PM
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Is the picture quality issue a significant determining factor between tivo and replay? I have a high quality front projector and I don't want a signifcantly degraded pciture. My S-VHS vcr delivers a high quality image even in a 84" diagonal size.

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post #11 of 18 Old 10-29-2003, 12:09 PM
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Jamese777 - My purely subjective opinion with viewing both is that they're both good - I just think the Replay is a bit better. If you're happy with the S-VHS you should be happy with either - I believe they both perform much better than any VHS variety (though I know I've seen resolution comparisons - you may want to run some searches). BTW, I was looking at a 27" CRT for both the Tivo and Replay.

The reason I prefer the Replay is that there have been numerous occasions, sometimes even at Medium quality, that I've felt the picture was just as good as over the air - certainly never the case with my old VCR, nor with the Tivo (under limited viewing).

Lurker623 - Sorry, I've never upgraded either. There have been numerous posts (none too recently, I believe) that give exhaustive, blow-by-blow descriptions and pictures of the process. Doesn't look too hard, but I usually cringe when I see them cutting out part of the case to cram in a new fan or some such.
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post #12 of 18 Old 10-29-2003, 01:14 PM
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Thanks DaJoos. Your insights are much appreciated.

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post #13 of 18 Old 10-29-2003, 01:35 PM
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replay - i have two and use the crap out of them networked the pc and to each other
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post #14 of 18 Old 11-03-2003, 02:20 PM
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DaJoos

Thanks for the reply. I have been ( hanging (lurking )around gathering info in order to decide which amoung 3 units to buy and when or if they die try to repair and improve. Tivo, Replay and the Rca scenium. The scenium is the cheapest only has harddrive and no subscription cost. The other 2 seem like a major investment . When the lifetime subscription is factored in.
So that made upgrading kind of scary, because of the potenial loss of the
investment.

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post #15 of 18 Old 11-12-2003, 02:27 PM
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Can you record an HD channel (to get the 16:9 format, not the "HD"), such as a local TWC channel?

I have a Panasonic projector for home theater, and am thinking about getting TWC and a 3250HD, to watch through the projector. My question is if I have a Replay in the loop, can I record and watch in the 16:9 format (don't care if it's 1080).

If not, is there a PVR that does this (compatable with TWC)?
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post #16 of 18 Old 11-12-2003, 07:53 PM
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The RCA Scenium DVR10 will only record Digital programs from the built-in twin HD tuners. No Analog programs will be recorded. Just got the set hooked up tonight and the Picture looks fantastic right out of the box.
I'm off to watch the "craddle of Life" Tomb Raider 2 DVD.

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post #17 of 18 Old 11-30-2003, 01:23 AM
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if I may add, I had the same debate, and went with the Replay cause of the networking features.

But if you have DirecTV, its hard to pass up their new deal, $99 for new or existing customers, free installation. Its only $5 a month, and records 2 channels at once, and u can watch a third previously recorded channel. There is one website that sells it for $46 free shipping/install, and you can get up to 3 regular recievers too, no extra cost. I forget the link, but it was an insane deal.
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post #18 of 18 Old 11-30-2003, 07:21 AM
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I have a couple TIVOs, and know nothing about Replay TV. Both my TIVOs are networked, and both have disks upgraded, which to answer a question above, is not hard, provided that you can follow directions, and are not afraid of pulling the hard drive and putting it into a PC to transfer the software. Normal off the shelf hard drives are used.
My reason at the time for going TIVO was because you could use it as a VCR if you didn't get the monthly service, and that it runs on linux OS so you can use it as a computer, and program it yourself to some extent, and for that reason, I went with the older stand-alone series one models, which can be purchased refurbished for around $100, although adding a network card brings that price up quite a bit.
I am interested in learning whether Replay TV can be used without a subscription? If not, that is a definate plus for the TIVO. If it can, how convenient is it to schedule manual recordings?
It is possible to archive TIVO recordings via the network connection, assuming you have telnet access, which is easy on the old models and more difficult on the newer models. However, the format you extract to, is quite difficult to burn to a dvd. I have made a few successful burns to DVD, but have more failures. Supposedly the DTV-TIVOs are easier to burn to DVD, because they store directly in the digital format from the DTV, which is both slightly higer quality than that of a stand alone tivo, but also in a format easier to convert to DVD.
However, if it is only archiving you want, and not playability on a DVD player, there are programs to allow you to re-insert the raw TIVO format back onto the TIVO, so you can store it on a DATA DVD or hard drive on the PC, then load it back onto the TIVO when you need to play it. From what I read in this forum, it sounds like the Replay TV might be more convenient for archiving, but it can be done on a TIVO that has been hacked for telnet access.
Re quality, in high quality mode, TIVO is better than any normal TV, and you don't see any digital artifacts even with very fast motion, except in extremely rare situations, so you won't see the difference unless you have a HDTV or big screen TV. In the low quality mode, there is definately a lack of quality, not in resolution or sharpness, but you start to see digital artifacts with fast moving scenes. You can hack the TIVO to use resolutions of your choice for the different quality levels, but I just use the high quality for everything.
My feeling is that people who start with Replay probably like Replay better, and people who start with TIVO like TIVO better. I really like my TIVOs, and unless the REPLAY could be used without a subscription, I wouldn't consider switching. I should also mention the TIVOWEB program, which lets you control the TIVO from a laptop, or even over the internet, which is very handy. I'm not sure if there is a Replay version of that or not.
BTW, I've also recently picked up one of those RCA 7000 recorders, and am not at all impressed with it so far. I love my TIVO, but am interested in learning more about the Replay.

B.Jones
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