Can I use A DVR For Over The Air Signals? - AVS Forum

AVS Forum > Gaming & Content Streaming > Digital Recorders (PVRs) General > Can I use A DVR For Over The Air Signals?

Digital Recorders (PVRs) General

McGinty's Avatar McGinty
06:00 PM Liked: 10
post #1 of 11
01-28-2007 | Posts: 24
Joined: Jan 2005
My cable bill is going through the roof so I was thinking of dropping it. I
live in Tucson and can get most major channels in HD OTA. However, I do
like to time shift some shows so I'd like to purchase a DVR. Most I've seen
imply you need to work with a cable or satellite company and pay for the DVR
service even if you purchase the equipment.

Does anyone know if I can plug a coaxial antenna cable into a DVR and simply
record OTA shows? Must I connect it to a phone line and pay Tivo or someone
else for the channel lineup and time signal? Essentially I'm trying to
recreate the old VHS days.

Please direct me to the correct group if this question is not right for this
one. Thanks in advance.

goldenfinger's Avatar goldenfinger
03:26 PM Liked: 10
post #2 of 11
01-29-2007 | Posts: 14
Joined: Nov 2006
Most DVR-PVR units do not have ATSC tuners in them YET, but after March 1, 2007 new units shipped across state lines or imported should have digital tuners in them. Most units will down res to 480i for recording.
McGinty's Avatar McGinty
05:36 PM Liked: 10
post #3 of 11
01-29-2007 | Posts: 24
Joined: Jan 2005

Good to know! Do any DVD recordes come with ATSC tuners? That may be a much less expensive way to go but I don't want to purchase an analog tuner that will be obsolete shortly. Besides, most of my local signals are digital now.


goldenfinger's Avatar goldenfinger
08:07 PM Liked: 10
post #4 of 11
01-29-2007 | Posts: 14
Joined: Nov 2006
The same FCC rules apply to DVD recorders after March. If any device that receives analog NTSC television must include an ATSC digital tuner.
tivoscool's Avatar tivoscool
09:39 PM Liked: 10
post #5 of 11
01-29-2007 | Posts: 21
Joined: Jul 2004
The Tivo Series 3 will record OTA.
tluxon's Avatar tluxon
12:49 AM Liked: 11
post #6 of 11
01-30-2007 | Posts: 2,675
Joined: Feb 2002
A good option for DVR-ing OTA is a PC with a FusionHDTV5 card in it. If you don't want a PC in the loop, consider the R5000-HD route with a STB.
Robert Brooks's Avatar Robert Brooks
08:44 AM Liked: 10
post #7 of 11
02-13-2007 | Posts: 37
Joined: Jan 2006
Another option is the Sony dhg-hdd250/dhg-hdd500, they are now discontinued but some stores (Fry's) has some in stock, and there's always e-bay. They can recieve OTA analog and digital, it can also get QAM signals. They even have a an HDMI. check out the thread on this forum.

AVS Forum > HDTV > HDTV Recorders >Sony DHG-HDD250/500: Official Thread

I just bought mine and am very pleased with it.
nn2g2bT's Avatar nn2g2bT
02:27 PM Liked: 10
post #8 of 11
05-31-2007 | Posts: 190
Joined: Sep 2000
I'm too cheap to pay for any cable or satellite feeds, so I want to use my Samsung Hard Disk Drive+DVD Recorder with "Basic TiVo" (Model RS-TX20) to record all of my local OTA television signals, both analog and digital -- even those that don't appear in TiVo's Guide.

This "Basic TiVo" Recorder will tune and record analog signals for the stations which are listed in its Guide just fine (through the RF antenna input), but I don't see any way to manually record an unlisted analog station, and the only way I've found to record the 480i output from my HD STB is to manually initiate each recording separately -- without any advance scheduling whatsoever.

Years ago, I was able to manually schedule an old-school Panasonic Showstopper (Model PV-HS2000, made by ReplayTV) to record all of the above -- it even tuned the STB for me, once I found an approximation of the right IR Blaster Code.

But I guess that's progress, huh?


Any comments, suggestions, or ideas out there about overcoming some of these proprietarily-engineered limitations?

P.S. Subscribing to the "TiVo Plus" Service makes no apparent difference in these features, so I'm not talking about any sort of theft-of-service issues here.

FDimino's Avatar FDimino
04:54 PM Liked: 10
post #9 of 11
12-08-2012 | Posts: 1
Joined: Dec 2012
I use a Magnavox MDR515H for OTA. It performs just as expected. No subscription of course that means you do not have a guide but have to depend on setting time start, stop and channel, You can DUB off on to a DVD as long as there is nothing recording or scheduled. I use a split-er to split the signal so I can watch another program while recording.. I can also watch recorded items from DVD or HDD at the same time.

The only problems are keeping the time synchronized and of course when something is preempted you get the wrong show.

I am currently looking for a multi tuner unit.
gaidin43's Avatar gaidin43
08:00 AM Liked: 10
post #10 of 11
03-06-2013 | Posts: 97
Joined: Jan 2012
TiVo premiere with lifetime is your best option and it has two tuners, computer access, iPhone access, and possibilities of extenders and streaming.
dengel1012's Avatar dengel1012
07:33 PM Liked: 10
post #11 of 11
04-03-2013 | Posts: 5
Joined: Nov 2007
Originally Posted by gaidin43 View Post

TiVo premiere with lifetime is your best option and it has two tuners, computer access, iPhone access, and possibilities of extenders and streaming.

Second. Even if you don't get lifetime, I think it's worth the monthly bill. I've had my TivoHD forever and am considering a Premier to get the latest Tivo features. Don't want to get the Premier 4, though, since it doesn't support OTA and I'd really like to cut the cable addiction. Cable just costs way more than I feel it's worth.
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