Can I stop leasing boxes? - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 33 Old 01-23-2009, 12:51 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Consultant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I need 3 HD boxes. 2 must have an HD DVR and 2 must be able to view Showtime.

I'm currently paying about $49 or close to $600 a year in fees to COMCAST to lease the three set-top boxes, 2 with DVR's. This includes the fee for 2 additional outlets. I'm not sure what the fees would be just to purchase the additional outlets as the lump it all together (the box fee and the outlet fee).

Is it possible, worth the time to explore buying a compatible box, or is it more hassle than it is worth, probably only saving me $20-$30 a month?

I can't get satellite. Trees are blocking.

I can't get Verizon FIOS.
Consultant is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 33 Old 01-23-2009, 04:25 AM
AVS Special Member
 
RCbridge's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Limerick Pa
Posts: 1,874
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Look at the TIVO boxes, but you still need to rent a cable card from your local cable-co.
RCbridge is offline  
post #3 of 33 Old 01-23-2009, 05:59 AM
AVS Special Member
 
oktoberrust11's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Sterling Heights, MI
Posts: 3,045
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 20
I doubt you can do a one-time lump sum fee for the additional 2 outlets. I also don't believe Comcast allows you to purchase their set-top boxes. I believe cable card is your best (only) option if you want to purchase your own (Tivo) box.

Xbox Live: oktober rust | Mii: 5207 2388 9861 4135 | Steam ID: detroit820 | Origin ID: oktoberrust11

oktoberrust11 is offline  
post #4 of 33 Old 01-23-2009, 07:27 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Tulpa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 10,018
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 58
Yeah, your best shot is two TiVo HDs with the lifetime payment on each, and rent a cableCARD for each from Comcast. Using a cableCARD the only way you're going to get Showtime. They almost certainly encrypt it and without the card, you're not going to decrypt it.

You'd have to have the TiVos for a long time (like at least a couple years) before you saw any gains over renting the DVRs, but if you're in this for the long haul, you will save money. A quick perusal of TiVo's site says you're looking at around $1400 up front for two TiVos, but you will own them with no extra fees from them.

The only other alternative I know of is downgrading to a cablebox and getting a hard drive equipped DVD recorder, but that would probably take longer to get to the point where you're saving money, and the interface won't be as smooth.

Don't believe everything on the Interwebz! A duck's quack DOES echo!
Tulpa is offline  
post #5 of 33 Old 01-27-2009, 04:11 AM
Newbie
 
DBallard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 4
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I also have comcast and dealing with the same fees, thanks for the help.
DBallard is offline  
post #6 of 33 Old 01-27-2009, 04:19 AM
 
CCONKLIN1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Oswego IL 60543
Posts: 2,461
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
At least in my area, the first cablecard for your tivo is free from comcast. After that it is $5.99 each. Go with the tivo boxes with lifetime subscriptions. Yes, it is a chunk to lay out at first but they have value! If/when you ditch Comcrap you will always be able to sell the tivo boxes.... and the lifetime subscriptions are transferable!
my 2 cents...
CCONKLIN1 is offline  
post #7 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 04:57 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Consultant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Has Tivo gotten any better? About a year ago when I used my parents non-HD Tivo, it sucked. The interface was a little nicer than the Comcast box but it was SLOW as heck. I liked the Comcast box a lot better.

I'm surprised no one else out other than Tivo offers an HD-DVR that accepts a cable card or if you can't just buy one of the motorola boxes?

If I don't need Showtime, will I still be able to get the HD channels if I tell Comcast I just want their most basic plan or does the cable card essentially limit which channels I can watch even with the non-encrypted channels?
Consultant is offline  
post #8 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 04:59 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Consultant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Example:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...m=190284523368

Wouldn't I just have to give the cable company a number of the unit?
Consultant is offline  
post #9 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 05:01 PM
AVS Special Member
 
StuJac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: S.E. PA
Posts: 1,632
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 17
You also have Moxi as an alternative. They cost around 700 ea but have no subscription fees. They also can't use ota.

Pan 46PZ85U, Marantz SR5003, TiVo Premier, TiVoHd + 1tb, A2 (fs), PS3, Pan DMR E-95 (fs), JVC DVD-A, Polk & Infinity, Harmony One
StuJac is offline  
post #10 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 05:07 PM
Advanced Member
 
s.bradford's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Northern Sierras
Posts: 711
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

Has Tivo gotten any better? About a year ago when I used my parents non-HD Tivo, it sucked. The interface was a little nicer than the Comcast box but it was SLOW as heck. I liked the Comcast box a lot better.

I'm surprised no one else out other than Tivo offers an HD-DVR that accepts a cable card or if you can't just buy one of the motorola boxes?

If I don't need Showtime, will I still be able to get the HD channels if I tell Comcast I just want their most basic plan or does the cable card essentially limit which channels I can watch even with the non-encrypted channels?

A non-cablecard equipped Tivo will bring in the same channels you would get by connecting your cable directly to your TV. These are known as Clear QAM channels and will be pretty much the limited basic lineup. Another "gotcha" to consider is that Tivo has such confidence in their hardware they pony up a full 90 day warranty . And, the lifetime subscription applies to the lifetime of the hardware, not your lifetime. If the box fails, you will most likely have to pay to fix it otherwise the money you spent on the lifetime subscription is up in smoke.

There is a big advantage to the Tivo DVRs in that they can talk to each other (playing recorded shows from one box on the other).
s.bradford is online now  
post #11 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 05:25 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Tulpa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 10,018
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

Example:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...m=190284523368

Wouldn't I just have to give the cable company a number of the unit?

Nope. In the US, they'll only activate boxes in their inventory; meaning, you have to rent their box (with the only notable exception is Comcast's activation of the DCP501.)

That box would be a nice $127.50 doorstop after a day or so. It's probably stolen from Comcast anyway.

Don't believe everything on the Interwebz! A duck's quack DOES echo!
Tulpa is offline  
post #12 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 05:42 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Consultant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Well I contaced Comcast. As I suspected they say they don't activate 3rd party boxes. So I'm not sure what people are doing with all the Motorola boxes being sold on E-bay? I suspect they can still be used without the Channel Guide and without Premium Channel access? I wonder if you can still call Comcast and tell them you need to re-register a box? I doubt it. I'm guessing the only way around it would be if you were chummy with a Comcast Tech?
Consultant is offline  
post #13 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 05:48 PM
Advanced Member
 
s.bradford's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Northern Sierras
Posts: 711
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

I suspect they can still be used without the Channel Guide and without Premium Channel access?

Sorry... the box is a door stop without authorized access to their network.
s.bradford is online now  
post #14 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 05:53 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Consultant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Well if I just got 3 cable cards I can reduce my bill by about $50/month. But HD Tivo Boxes are going for $260 each and the service is $10/month for annual plan. If I have to pay for 3 services one for each box then savings is less than $20 a month. Tivo is a rip-off. Who would want to purchase a lifetime to anything technology related. Who knows what will be the rage in 2-3 years?
Consultant is offline  
post #15 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 05:54 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Tulpa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 10,018
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

So I'm not sure what people are doing with all the Motorola boxes being sold on E-bay?

Ripping people off.

Don't believe everything on the Interwebz! A duck's quack DOES echo!
Tulpa is offline  
post #16 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 06:08 PM
Advanced Member
 
s.bradford's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Northern Sierras
Posts: 711
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

Well if I just got 3 cable cards I can reduce my bill by about $50/month. But HD Tivo Boxes are going for $260 each and the service is $10/month for annual plan. If I have to pay for 3 services one for each box then savings is less than $20 a month. Tivo is a rip-off. Who would want to purchase a lifetime to anything technology related. Who knows what will be the rage in 2-3 years?

Yup... and the pricing for all providers (cable and satellite) is very well thought out and it ALL works out to be pretty much the same no matter who, especially if you want more than one DVR.

Since the Comcast boxes can't talk to each other, I am seriously considering a CAT5 Balun to run the component output of the main DVR to the second set and eliminating the second box (but am concerned that one box may not provide enough storage). At least with the Moxi or Tivo you can add external storage.

Another consideration I am contemplating is just going back to limited basic and buying the seasons of the other shows I watch that are not on the networks on Blu-Ray. I'll miss some sports (ESPN, etc.) but I can't imagine for what I watch that the cost would be anywhere near the $1800/yr I am currently spending on cable.
s.bradford is online now  
post #17 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 07:12 PM
 
CCONKLIN1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Oswego IL 60543
Posts: 2,461
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Being as I bought a tivo lifetime membership when they first came out, I don't feel that it was a "rip off" at all!
Best,
Chris
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

Well if I just got 3 cable cards I can reduce my bill by about $50/month. But HD Tivo Boxes are going for $260 each and the service is $10/month for annual plan. If I have to pay for 3 services one for each box then savings is less than $20 a month. Tivo is a rip-off. Who would want to purchase a lifetime to anything technology related. Who knows what will be the rage in 2-3 years?

CCONKLIN1 is offline  
post #18 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 09:49 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Consultant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by CCONKLIN1 View Post

Being as I bought a tivo lifetime membership when they first came out, I don't feel that it was a "rip off" at all!
Best,
Chris

When the Moxi start selling for $299 in a few months, you may thing otherwise.

This article really sums up the whole situation well:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-10155474-1.html

As a previous poster said, you end up paying about the same no matter which route you take. It is almost like there is price fixing going on. I make good money, but a some of my friends have HD capable displayes but have yet to watch HD TV as they can't afford the cable! Internet and Cable TV for a couple TV's in the house at $130+ a month seems just ridiculous to me. Too bad I can't get Verizon FIOS (although I'm not sure if the pricing structure is much better, but the technology sure sounds better.)

The price on the MOXI will come down just like all technology. When that happens Tivo and Comcast and the like will be forced to rethink their pricing. I'll just wait for that to happen. Now way I'm locking myself into Tivo.

The only drawback on the MOXI is no Netflix online. I think movie delivery will be mostly over the wire in a couple years. Blockbuster stores (or any other DVD rental place) will be non-existent in 3-4 years.

So maybe if MOXI brings the price down and forces Tivo and Comcast to lower prices, then I'd still go with Comcast or Tivo to get the On Demand capability.

Come on MOXI, lower your price!
Consultant is offline  
post #19 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 10:01 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Tulpa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 10,018
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

So maybe if MOXI brings the price down and forces Tivo and Comcast to lower prices, then I'd still go with Comcast or Tivo to get the On Demand capability.

The presence of the Moxi isn't going to force Comcast to do any price lowering. You still need to subscribe to Comcast and use their cableCARDs to view the more desirable channels. The only thing you might save is a whopping $10 or so a month on each DVR rental. You still need whatever service you would subscribe to no matter what DVR you have, theirs, TiVo's or Moxi's.

Fact is, most people plunk down the $10 for a cableco's DVR rather than pay hundreds upfront.

TiVo might get worried, but Moxi would have to aggressively steal market share.

Don't believe everything on the Interwebz! A duck's quack DOES echo!
Tulpa is offline  
post #20 of 33 Old 02-10-2009, 10:06 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Consultant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tulpa View Post

The presence of the Moxi isn't going to force Comcast to do any price lowering. You still need to subscribe to Comcast and use their cableCARDs to view the more desirable channels. The only thing you might save is a whopping $10 or so a month on DVR rental. You still need whatever service you would subscribe to no matter what DVR you have, theirs, TiVo's or Moxi's.

I realize that. But I have 3 Comcast HD DVR's. It's like $15/month each for them. Adds up. Ya I suppose if they dropped the lease fees they'd just up the service fees to compensate. I, like most, HATE the cable company. When I called Verizon, they said they could not offer FIOS in my area (King Count, Washington) I haven't research the regulations why they can offer it in an area 30 min from me but not here. Whatever the government did it sure is squashing competition as far as hard-line TV. No wonder my cable bill is $180/month (with Internet) OUCH
Consultant is offline  
post #21 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 08:00 AM
AVS Special Member
 
demonfoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,272
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

When the Moxi start selling for $299 in a few months, you may thing otherwise.

You're quite an optimist. An $800 device going down to $299 in a span of a few months? Especially one with no continuing monthly fee? Unless they kill the product, there's no way that's going to happen. I'd bet $299 barely covers parts costs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

This article really sums up the whole situation well:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-10155474-1.html

This article does the usual thing of saying how "well, if you lease the cableco box, they'll replace it for you when it breaks". However, if you've been paying attention, you'll notice that the reliability of those boxes does tend to be rather questionable. I have the original Series3 TiVo (the first HD TiVo unit), which is now approaching 3 years old. I haven't had any problems. I'm not saying TiVo owners never experience problems, but I suspect if I were using the cableco DVR box, I'd probably have had to have it replaced more than a few times.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

As a previous poster said, you end up paying about the same no matter which route you take. It is almost like there is price fixing going on.

Or perhaps that's the common price because that's just what it costs? Just a thought...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

The price on the MOXI will come down just like all technology.

Surely, but the price drop you mentioned above is not going to happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

When that happens Tivo and Comcast and the like will be forced to rethink their pricing. I'll just wait for that to happen. Now way I'm locking myself into Tivo.

"Locking yourself in" is a subjective thing, I guess. I love my TiVo, and wouldn't give it up. It's so much better than the alternatives, I don't mind paying the monthly fee.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

The only drawback on the MOXI is no Netflix online.

The *only* one? I personally make far more use of TivoToComeBack (allowing me to put content on my TiVo) than of Netflix. Not to mention TiVoCast, TiVoToGo, ability to record analog programming without additional hardware... there are a lot of features that the Moxi doesn't have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

I think movie delivery will be mostly over the wire in a couple years. Blockbuster stores (or any other DVD rental place) will be non-existent in 3-4 years.

You really are an optimist, aren't you?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

So maybe if MOXI brings the price down and forces Tivo and Comcast to lower prices, then I'd still go with Comcast or Tivo to get the On Demand capability.

Maybe if they added a bunch of additional features. DLNA streaming and extenders are fine, but they're features I don't care about for my setup. It doesn't have OTA recording capability, either - you are locking yourself into cable if you get the Moxi CableCARD box. If you cancel cable, the box is useless, while I can happily keep recording NTSC and ATSC programming OTA.

Saying that they're a straight-across exchange denies a lot of the features, and surely the ecosystem, that's sprung up around TiVo. I'm sure the Moxi CableCARD box is fine, but it's just not the same device at all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

Come on MOXI, lower your price!

I don't think you'll see any substantial price drops on the Moxi unit for awhile. This is not a burgeoning market with loads of competition. Besides, to be able to drop prices, they'd have to be moving a reasonable amount of units; are they? I haven't heard any sales numbers for the device.

Edit: Oh, and the Moxi requires broadband, too - dialup access to guide data isn't available. That's an additional required cost to operate the unit. I've never even plugged my TiVo into a phone line, but some people do.
demonfoo is offline  
post #22 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 08:08 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Consultant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I was exagerrating/kidding. But $299 in 18 months would not surprise me, nor should anyone else who has bought computers and electronics repeatedly in the past 20 years. That's why personally I think it is nuts to sign-up for anything 'lifetime' that has to do with technology. But I do note that supposedly the Tivo membership is transferrable. But if several manufacturers are producing low-cost HD DVR's with cable card slot and no service fee a couple years from now, the lifetime Tivo membership may have not demand and become worthless.
Consultant is offline  
post #23 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 08:19 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Tulpa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 10,018
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

But $299 in 18 months would not surprise me, nor should anyone else who has bought computers and electronics repeatedly in the past 20 years.

That's different, though. Computers have had 20 (actually, closer to 30) years of constant consumer support and progress, not to mention LOTS of different manufacturers. And the latest and greatest consumer computers still cost tons of money. It's only been in the past ten years or so that prices have dropped enough that your average Schmoe can get a really cheap and limited one for under a paycheck.

A Moxi is a comparatively limited device that is entering a market that has been utterly dominated by TiVo and cable DVRs since that came into being. It's an uphill battle, and you're not going to see a price drop anytime soon.

If you need any further proof, look at the HDD/DVD recorder situation. Those didn't need subscriptions, either, and very few people bought them (other than video archivists and such.) They dropped their price almost at the same rate as you want the Moxi box to drop (around $700 to less then $300) and it still didn't matter. Now there's only a few models left and those are going to disappear in the coming year.

Don't believe everything on the Interwebz! A duck's quack DOES echo!
Tulpa is offline  
post #24 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 08:45 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Consultant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
The first plasma TV's where 42" and were introduced in 1997 by Fujitsu and Philips. The Phillips was $14,999 and sold in 4 Sears locations. $14,999 adjusted for inflation would be roughly the equivalent of $20,000 in today's dollars.

You can get a Panasonic 42" Plasma for just under $600 these days. That's a 97% reduction in price over 12 years. We'll meet back here in two years and see how much HD DVR's cost.
Consultant is offline  
post #25 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 08:53 AM
AVS Special Member
 
demonfoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,272
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

I was exagerrating/kidding. But $299 in 18 months would not surprise me, nor should anyone else who has bought computers and electronics repeatedly in the past 20 years. That's why personally I think it is nuts to sign-up for anything 'lifetime' that has to do with technology. But I do note that supposedly the Tivo membership is transferrable. But if several manufacturers are producing low-cost HD DVR's with cable card slot and no service fee a couple years from now, the lifetime Tivo membership may have not demand and become worthless.

So, you're saying don't buy a TiVo and Lifetime Product Service for $600-$700, buy the Moxi CableCARD box for $800? Seems like it all pretty much comes out in the wash to me. If the Moxi box provides the feature set you like, buy it, if not, the TiVo is there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

The first plasma TV's where 42" and were introduced in 1997 by Fujitsu and Philips. The Phillips was $14,999 and sold in 4 Sears locations. $14,999 adjusted for inflation would be roughly the equivalent of $20,000 in today's dollars.

You can get a Panasonic 42" Plasma for just under $600 these days. That's a 97% reduction in price over 12 years. We'll meet back here in two years and see how much HD DVR's cost.

That's a bit different - those displays have had the technology and manufacturing methods refined, eliminating redundancy, and benefited hugely from economies of scale. A DVR's parts aren't going to see that kind of price drop, because the processors, encoders, decoders, controllers, drives and other parts are already used in a variety of other devices - maybe not in the same arrangement, but the parts they're composed of aren't likely to see the same sort of major leaps in design and manufacturing process efficiency that LCD and plasma display panels have over the past 10+ years.

Sure, they'll benefit from economies of scale, if the sales numbers ramp up significantly - buying parts in volume means lower unit costs. I expect most people will continue to stick with provider-specific units though, and the prices won't drop very much on these devices via retail channels.
demonfoo is offline  
post #26 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 08:56 AM
Advanced Member
 
s.bradford's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Northern Sierras
Posts: 711
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

But if several manufacturers are producing low-cost HD DVR's with cable card slot and no service fee a couple years from now, the lifetime Tivo membership may have not demand and become worthless.

I think there are two issues here. One is that a low price box currently requires the service fees to make them profitable. Like cell phones, the price of the hardware is subsidized by the service fees.

The second issue is that I am not sure the "free service" model is a viable one (if you want the fancy guide data). For instance, if Moxi does not make a go of it, I think their internet based service may go on the chopping block.

Tivo on the other hand has enough brand recognition and market share that they would be scooped up by another owner should they ever fail. And while Tivo does indeed have the best feature set/user experience in the DVR arena, they are fighting an uphill battle against sat and cable companies that "seem" to be giving these things away. I am afraid J6P has little reason in his own mind to pony up 5,6, or 7 hundred dollars for a DVR when his sat/cable co. just hands him one.

Tivo has been struggling with this issue for years, trying to enhance their revenue stream with interface licensing deals but it has not turned out well. Unless they can come up with a better business model I feel they are not long for this world.
s.bradford is online now  
post #27 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 10:11 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Tulpa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 10,018
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 58
Yeah, it really looks like the cable DVR is going to eventually prevail.

TiVo was in at the start when hard disk DVRs were first introduced. They were so successful in marketing penetration that characters in TV shows mentioned them, TiVoing became a verb, and the brand itself was used to describe any DVR.

So the cable companies responded by offering up Motorola and Scientific Atlanta DVRs that are leased for comparative chicken feed, are promoted right when you sign up for cable service (and repeatedly afterward), and can be replaced for no money. That's really cut into TiVo's market share.

So you're asking if Moxi, which has NONE of TiVo's marketing advantages or the cableco's incessant promotion of their devices, is suddenly going to become the miracle $300 DVR even BEFORE it starts selling widely? I don't see that happening.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not hating on the Moxi. I think a DVR you can buy, put in a cableCARD, and off you go is great. Heck, I've been taking a long hard look at one. I just don't see it being cheap anytime soon. Certainly not this year.

Don't believe everything on the Interwebz! A duck's quack DOES echo!
Tulpa is offline  
post #28 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 03:52 PM
Member
 
Nitrobass24's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 73
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
You could always get an old computer, Install some sort of PVR software and get a cable card tuner.

No fees other then the cable card.
Nitrobass24 is offline  
post #29 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 08:31 PM
AVS Special Member
 
demonfoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,272
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitrobass24 View Post

You could always get an old computer, Install some sort of PVR software and get a cable card tuner.

No fees other then the cable card.

No, you can't. The UDCR tuners have to be connected to a system running Windows Vista, and the system has to be a CableCARD-licensed system, with an appropriately signed BIOS. The tuners won't work otherwise. You can't just jam the tuners into any old system.
demonfoo is offline  
post #30 of 33 Old 03-21-2011, 04:05 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Tulpa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 10,018
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 58
Heh, I rediscovered this thread recently, and had to respond.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Consultant View Post

We'll meet back here in two years and see how much HD DVR's cost.

Well, it's been (a little over) two years, and the regular Moxi is now... $600.

http://www.moxi.com/us/



TiVo, fwiw, is $99 with a monthly fee. Not sure what their lifetime conditions are today.

https://www3.tivo.com/store/premiere.do

Don't believe everything on the Interwebz! A duck's quack DOES echo!
Tulpa is offline  
Reply Cable, Digital Cable - Non-HDTV

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off