, my upgrade path and experience is very similar to yours. A little while back, I decided to think outside the box for a TV/Movie solution for our family (focused core usefulness and functionality).
Cablecard was never really a good option for our family (couldn't playback any of our favorite TV shows from HBO, SHO, Cinemax, etc). Also, I realized there was no point in maintaining a gigantic movie collection; considering, nobody in my family actually likes to watch the same movie more than once. Lastly, something I always wanted to do on SageTV, was to have a fully functioning mobile DVR TV client (Android or Windows tablet, etc).
As much as I hated Comcast in the past, I have to admit, they really did a great job with their X1 Platform; especially, when I tried it with an open mind. "TV functionality-wise" our family couldn't be happier. Seriously. All their clients/extenders have the same GUI/functionality, just like SageTV. Their Web Browser client (see attached screenshots) and Android client are very impressive; mainly because its so fast and stable. Their Guide even has a builtin "Kids View" Guide (just like Netflix's Kids view).
Our family uses the sh** out of On Demand. Just yesterday, my friend suggested watching a new TV show, Ascenion (which I already missed the first 3 episodes). I watched all 3 consecutively last night, no problem. Afterwards, I added the show to record on my DVR recording schedule. This luxury is preferable over any clunky "cut the cord" illegal Usenet DVR solution, in my book. Some On Demand has "forced" commercial TV commercials; however, its certainly worth to me, it for the convenience.
While Comcast's "TV" solution is far more useful to me than SageTV (especially, considering full functionality/same GUI even while mobile), their Movie solution is lacking. Hence, we added a Roku3 in the livingroom (for Netflix, Amazon Prime Movies, and Pandora).
Originally Posted by dcard
I am a happy migrant from SageTV.
Most of the content of interest for me is copy-once premiums. With multiple TV's, there are no clean solutions out there. If SageTV were still in business, perhaps they would have worked the bugs out of Hauppauge recording that would require a cable box for each "tuner." But that is not the case.
With lack of options on a recent move, I threw in towel with a Comcast Xfinity X1 system (5 tuner system). A bit buggy, not nearly as slick, nor functional as Sagetv, it does have one major advantage:
It has an integrated On-Demand system that essentially provides all current channel content for free (you don't have to think in advance and even make DVR recordings). Recent movies, TV shows are all free. New Movie titles and ones not playing on channels can be purchased. You can find old series On-Demand and buy entire seasons on-demand. No more Newsgroup and torrent searches, bad downloads, and subsequent Amazon purchases (to make me feel legal).
The big realization for me was, after having a great SageTV library of of over 1300 Movies, is that I, nor anyone in my family, EVER watches a movie more than once. Cool "Wall of Videos," but pure bragging rights only.....of little practical value.
The content creators and providers are winning the battle, I am afraid. They are making it too difficult for us to experience content in its intended quality on an HTPC. Blue-Ray and cable/satellite premium content specifically. I doubt we will ever see anything as great as SageTV again, as they have made it impossible to make a decent business model with all these hurdles.
Now I still have an HTPC connected to my TV. I prefer the speed and responsiveness of an HTPC for serving up Netflix and Amazon Prime Internet content. And I run JRiver for high quality music feed to my audio system.