The VCR timer is good for someone like me. I have a Hauppauge hardware MPEG-2 encoder on a dedicated PC, being used to record primetime programming onto a hard drive. I use the auxillary input of the card and not the internal tuner. The TR40 would probably be able to change channels by itself.
After I get the programming on the hard drive, I burn DVD+/-RW disks with the shows and watch the programs on a portable DVD player on the 55 minute public transist trip into the city each day, coming and going. Two hours a day on the bus! I presently use an HD set top box with both HD and analog output jacks. The Hauppage takes the output from the analog jacks. The HDTV to analog recordings are in vertically stretched, anamorphic form and when played on a widescreen portable DVD player look GREAT! Just like mini-HD. Very sharp and very clear!
I had a high cost Archos portable multimedia unit (3 inches x 5 inches total size), but the 7" screen DVD player is sized just right for my eyes. I watch 10 hr. of primetime programming every week on the bus. The bus is a long distance transit bus with reclining seats, personal air nozzles, overhead pointable lights, and now even free internet service. Not your inner-city rolling slum bus. It is a "get the lawyers to the city" type bus.
The TR40 would allow me to use the full HD STB in another location, and still get the job done on my recording tasks, this time with channels changing by themselves...
But alas, my government coupons also expire on May 23. Why not let us PRE-ORDER the TR40 box and use our coupons before they expire? I am a long term Dish customer, since 1997, and the VIP 722 can't be beat. Great hardware! Hopefully the TR40 will be the same. I am considering using the internet hookup to a laptop and the Slingbox, but the laptops are really too big compared to the perfect sized 7" , widescreen DVD player that I now use for bus entertainment.