Originally Posted by oldensign October 1 on Comcast: ALL clear QAM channels on ALL devices with digital tuners now show ALL TV channels (including local channels on basic) as scrambled.
Well it finally happened, just a year later than I first feared. October 1 was the magic date here as well. It was fun while it lasted.
So here's a question to those of you who have lost unencrypted cable: what are you doing to replace it? We have Comcast limited basic and almost never watch live television, so our routine was to record to a Mac Mini (three tuners) using EyeTV and convert and dump most content into iTunes for consumption on Apple TVs. It was not the most elegant of solutions, but it worked remarkably well for us. Now I have to come up with an alternative. Whatever I do, it has to be a whole-house solution, so renting Comcast boxes is out, as their new system is not not available here. Plus I don't want to get trapped with one of their expensive packages. Here are the options I'm looking at:
1. Get an antenna and continue recording as I have. I've already tried some moderately powerful antennas with no success. I might be able to pick up the major networks stations from San Francisco with some really powerful antennas, but there's no guarantee that I'll be successful, and just trying it out will be a major undertaking. I will probably forget this option.
2. Keep my Comcast limited basic and get a TiVo Roamio Plus. The Roamio is a really good unit, and it would pretty much give us the same capability that we currently have. But it is fairly expensive, considering that we don't get any additional content (not that we need it).
3. Get Dish or DirecTV. Only slightly more expensive than TiVo plus Comcast limited basic, we'd get a lot more content, but as I said we don't really need it. I really don't want to get locked into a two-year contract, however, and though the Dish Hopper and DirecTV Genie DVRs seem to be pretty good, they also appear to have some problems.
4. Cut the cord. I've been giving Hulu+ a try, and I have to say that it works pretty well. I just don't know that I can stand sitting through the commercials, though. Sure they're shorter than on broadcast TV, but they can't be skipped, so they're really longer. The real fly in the ointment is CBS: not on Hulu+ and their content cannot be easily put on the big screen. I had to use their web site a couple of times last year when I missed recoding shows, and the experience was not good.
Anyway, if any of you have comments or suggestions, I'd be interested in hearing from you.