Stand alone DVR's without monthly fee? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 02-10-2014, 07:48 AM - Thread Starter
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So my Dad called me up yesterday and, in his way...voiced his displeasure with having to pay a monthly fee for a DVR. And no I did not waste my time with getting into a debate with him about how he already pays a monthly fee for the ATT Uverse box, rational discussions are pointless.

Anyway, I told him I would look into it for him but I'm fairly certain I already know the answer. There is not a stand alone DVR on the market that does not require a monthly fee which is capable of recording digital cable from providers such as Uverse, Cox, Comcast, etc correct? I know that stand alone DVR's exist, but the only cable they are able to record is OTA, right?

I know that you can use a CableCard with an HTPC...it's what I do myself. But beyond that, there are no alternatives. Am I right?
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post #2 of 8 Old 02-10-2014, 08:02 AM
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TiVo or HTPC are the only options left standing now. Even if he went to an all-streaming box he would still be subscribing to services every month.


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post #3 of 8 Old 02-10-2014, 08:04 AM - Thread Starter
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But even Tivo is a monthly fee, correct? For Tivo don't you get the box up front, and then pay a monthly fee for their service?
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post #4 of 8 Old 02-10-2014, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mva5580 View Post

But even Tivo is a monthly fee, correct? For Tivo don't you get the box up front, and then pay a monthly fee for their service?

Unless you want to add another $400 on top to pay the "lifetime" subscription fee it's monthly.

You were right the first time. There are no options.

http://support.tivo.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/573


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post #5 of 8 Old 02-10-2014, 08:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mva5580 View Post

So my Dad called me up yesterday and, in his way...voiced his displeasure with having to pay a monthly fee for a DVR. And no I did not waste my time with getting into a debate with him about how he already pays a monthly fee for the ATT Uverse box, rational discussions are pointless.

Anyway, I told him I would look into it for him but I'm fairly certain I already know the answer. There is not a stand alone DVR on the market that does not require a monthly fee which is capable of recording digital cable from providers such as Uverse, Cox, Comcast, etc correct? I know that stand alone DVR's exist, but the only cable they are able to record is OTA, right?

I know that you can use a CableCard with an HTPC...it's what I do myself. But beyond that, there are no alternatives. Am I right?
Tivo lifetime, where you essentially pay a couple of years worth of monthly fees up front but no monthly fees after that. So you can buy a Tivo for $400-$600 and add $400-$500 for lifetime DVR service and avoid monthly fees. So let your Dad know he can spend about a grand up front and have no monthly fees, save a few hundred more buying a used Tivo with lifetime, or go the HTPC route like you did.

Since my parents could not maintain a PC, I simply put them on satellite and switch services every two years, essentially avoiding DVR monthly fees by always being a new customer.


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post #6 of 8 Old 02-10-2014, 09:27 AM
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More importantly, if he's sticking with U-Verse his only option is the AT&T DVR, there are no other good answers since they don't use Cablecard.
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post #7 of 8 Old 02-10-2014, 10:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by slowbiscuit View Post

More importantly, if he's sticking with U-Verse his only option is the AT&T DVR, there are no other good answers since they don't use Cablecard.

Ah. Didn't know they don't even offer CableCard. He's on the East Coast, I'm on the West. Thanks for that.

There are alternatives for him (HTPC, switching providers every few years, things like that,) but then of course you get into whether or not he's willing to put in that effort and/or deal with the switching, and those are things I can't help. I've offered alternatives, and unfortunately the only thing that's probably going to come of it is more complaining. I just stop talking until he moves onto something else. Thanks for the input.

Just kind of blows my mind how I will show people my setup, they think it's all great and cool, but in no way are they interested in doing it themselves. For how much a lot of these people complain about being "forced" into doing something, I find it pretty amazing how many of them openly choose to keep it when there are alternatives that work. If they want to pay for the convenience, that's their choice. But don't act like there aren't options. There are.
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post #8 of 8 Old 02-10-2014, 12:03 PM
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Originally Posted by mva5580 View Post

I've offered alternatives, and unfortunately the only thing that's probably going to come of it is more complaining. I just stop talking until he moves onto something else.
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