New Channel Master DVR+ vs. Used Tivos with Lifetime Service - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 03-13-2014, 02:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Thinking of cutting the cord and going with OTA + Roku, but still want a similar TV/DVR experience to DirecTV (grid guide, pausing and rewinding live TV, and of course intuitive DVR funcitonality.)

I am comparing used Tivo options (Premiere and up with lifetime service) to the new Channel Master DVR+. Anyone have any thoughts on that, or experience with both? Pros and cons?

Not too concerned about on-board storage - presuming the Tivos can also be expanded by simply adding an external drive. I will be connecting direct to ethernet.

Recording 2 HD programs at once is a must (I think the CM does this) - it looks like not all the Tivo models do that?

Spending 700+ dollars for new Tivos with lifetime was of no interest to me.
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post #2 of 19 Old 08-15-2014, 05:08 AM
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I originally purchased the DVR+ to add to our bedroom. As it was shipping to me, I did more research. For the same price I found a Tivo Premiere with Lifetime for the same price.

We already have a Tivo Premiere in the living room (45 hours). I just got the $99 lifetime on that box (had it over 3 years). Now the two Premieres can act together for a four tuner system.

Why I didn't think to get a Tivo first is beyond me. DVR+ going back in the mail.

You should be able to get two Tivo Premiere with Lifetime for $600, and Tivo HD with Lifetime for under $500 for two. Better keep shopping for prices...$700 for two is insane.

As a comparison, the Premiere is better than the DVR+ in every way IMHO. Better user interface, way more viewing options (Netflix. hulu, amazon, youtube) and much better recording options. Anyone that currently has a Premiere would NEVER swap it for a DVR+ unless the sole reason was to save $ (assuming they are not eligible for $99 lifetime service). DVR+, though nice, is not even in the same league as Tivo Premiere.

Peter 100% OTA

Last edited by plamar; 08-15-2014 at 05:12 AM.
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post #3 of 19 Old 08-15-2014, 08:19 AM
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The only chance you take with the Premier is that the OTA tuners are not as good as the ones in the previous TiVo HD or the current Roamio. But if your reception area is such that it is not an issue, then yes a DVR+ is no match for a used Premier+lifetime for $300-350. At this point, I would not buy a used TiVo HD+lifetime, especially if you want to run multiple networked TiVo's and be able to readily watch shows recorded on the other unit. The network transfer rate of the Premier is much faster than the TiVo HD and faster than the bitrate of the recorded shows so you can watch a show on the other Premier within seconds of starting the transfer. With a TiVo HD you may have to wait 15-20 min for it to buffer sufficiently before you can watch it through to the end without pausing for additional buffering.

Where did you do your Premier shopping?

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post #4 of 19 Old 09-17-2014, 09:57 AM
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I have a couple of follow up questions as I'm researching essentially the same move. I'm a longtime Dish Network customer, looking to cut the cord (signal?) as it were. I currently only have 1 HDTV at home (Samsung), my other two tv's are older tubes, still have good picture. I already have an OTA HD antenna. Was thinking I would go with the Tivo Roamio and add 2 Tivo Minis for the 2 non-HD TVs.

Anyone have thoughts on this?
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post #5 of 19 Old 09-17-2014, 10:37 AM
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Well given that TiVo Mini's+lifetime are $150 and you can get a Roamio+lifetime for under $600 with the promo code -- a Roamio + 2 Mini will run pretty much the same as 3 used Premiers+lifetime.

In either case you need network connectivity at each TV but in the case of the Mini's you don't need a feed from the antenna -- they use a tuner from the Roamio. Three Premiers will give you 6 tuners (two more than Roamio) and more disk space -- you can stream the content from any Premier to any other so your effective device capacity will be higher. On the other hand, Premier is EOL and Roamio is the new kid on the block -- you are buying into the beginning of the product life-cycle so you can expect that Roamio will gain new features that Premier will never get. Also, the OTA tuners on Roamio are better than Premier's -- not an issue if you have strong signals but if you have some stations that are on the "fringe" Premier may have some problems with locking onto them.

The choice is yours but personally I would go with Roamio and two Mini's. I started with a TiVo HD (still running), skipped over Premier and went Roamio for the 4 tuners and Mini potential -- I'll be putting a Mini on the kitchen TV. As far as capacity, Roamio comes with a 500GB HDD. You can buy an external 1TB WD DVR Expansion drive and plug it into the eSATA port but for the same price you can buy a 2TB Seagate Pipeline AV drive and just drop it in the Roamio to replace the stock drive.

In general for both Roamio and Premier, if you have a PC or server on your network you have unlimited storage because you can bi-directionally transfer content to store it on the server and pull it back to watch on-demand -- that's what I do.

That is pretty much all the most important factors I can think of. Either way you can't go wrong with TiVo.

- kelson h

The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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post #6 of 19 Old 09-17-2014, 12:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
Well given that TiVo Mini's+lifetime are $150 and you can get a Roamio+lifetime for under $600 with the promo code -- a Roamio + 2 Mini will run pretty much the same as 3 used Premiers+lifetime.

In either case you need network connectivity at each TV but in the case of the Mini's you don't need a feed from the antenna -- they use a tuner from the Roamio. Three Premiers will give you 6 tuners (two more than Roamio) and more disk space -- you can stream the content from any Premier to any other so your effective device capacity will be higher. On the other hand, Premier is EOL and Roamio is the new kid on the block -- you are buying into the beginning of the product life-cycle so you can expect that Roamio will gain new features that Premier will never get. Also, the OTA tuners on Roamio are better than Premier's -- not an issue if you have strong signals but if you have some stations that are on the "fringe" Premier may have some problems with locking onto them.

The choice is yours but personally I would go with Roamio and two Mini's. I started with a TiVo HD (still running), skipped over Premier and went Roamio for the 4 tuners and Mini potential -- I'll be putting a Mini on the kitchen TV. As far as capacity, Roamio comes with a 500GB HDD. You can buy an external 1TB WD DVR Expansion drive and plug it into the eSATA port but for the same price you can buy a 2TB Seagate Pipeline AV drive and just drop it in the Roamio to replace the stock drive.

In general for both Roamio and Premier, if you have a PC or server on your network you have unlimited storage because you can bi-directionally transfer content to store it on the server and pull it back to watch on-demand -- that's what I do.

That is pretty much all the most important factors I can think of. Either way you can't go wrong with TiVo.
Thanks for the reply. Glad to know my thinking was sound. Out of curiosity, where do you get a promo code?
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post #7 of 19 Old 09-17-2014, 12:35 PM
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Search for Tivo promo code on fleabay, multiple sellers there. Go to www.sellmoretivo.com to see all the prices (ignore the $174 Mini price, it's obsolete now).
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post #8 of 19 Old 09-17-2014, 04:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Take Flight View Post
I am comparing used Tivo options (Premiere and up with lifetime service) to the new Channel Master DVR+. Anyone have any thoughts on that, or experience with both? Pros and cons?
I don't actually have any experience with either one but, as a general comment, shouldn't you compare new with new? Otherwise, seems to me you're comparing apples and oranges.

I realize that Tivo's have been around for ages and the CM is pretty new so there's not that many used ones available yet, but still ...

Cable-free since Nov 2013
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post #9 of 19 Old 09-18-2014, 07:38 AM
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Yeah not following how used vs. new is in any way relevant - they work the same no matter how old they are.
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post #10 of 19 Old 09-22-2014, 10:39 AM
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Yeah not following how used vs. new is in any way relevant - they work the same no matter how old they are.
I have a thing against used electronics. Not to mention the warranty, credit card price and damage protection I simply don't want to own "used" I realize it's a personal preference or quirk although I have tried such on several occasions and for various reasons it has only reinforced my belief.
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post #11 of 19 Old 09-22-2014, 11:46 AM
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I have a thing against used electronics. Not to mention the warranty, credit card price and damage protection I simply don't want to own "used" I realize it's a personal preference or quirk although I have tried such on several occasions and for various reasons it has only reinforced my belief.
Agreed. I owned 2 used Tivo HDs for a short while. One liked to reboot randomly every couple of days (I presume) only during playback of recorded content. The other one's ethernet port stopped working periodically and required a reboot to fix it. I don't like buying used electronics any more either.
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post #12 of 19 Old 09-22-2014, 11:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles R View Post
I have a thing against used electronics. Not to mention the warranty, credit card price and damage protection I simply don't want to own "used" I realize it's a personal preference or quirk although I have tried such on several occasions and for various reasons it has only reinforced my belief.
Considering all the kit you reportedly put together, use for a while then sell on eBay, it's a good thing for you that a lot of other people don't feel the same way.
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- kelson h

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post #13 of 19 Old 09-22-2014, 12:42 PM
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Considering all the kit you reportedly put together, use for a while then sell on eBay, it's a good thing for you that a lot of other people don't feel the same way.
I would never sell an assembled PC without a burn-in period. Typically, two to four hours before they are blessed.

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post #14 of 19 Old 09-23-2014, 09:29 AM
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Considering all the kit you reportedly put together, use for a while then sell on eBay, it's a good thing for you that a lot of other people don't feel the same way.
Zing!
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post #15 of 19 Old 09-28-2014, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles R View Post
I have a thing against used electronics. Not to mention the warranty, credit card price and damage protection I simply don't want to own "used" I realize it's a personal preference or quirk although I have tried such on several occasions and for various reasons it has only reinforced my belief.
I'm with you and my entire life has been spent repairing all kinds of electronic gear, broadcast, military, consumer, for some of the largest manufacturers in the world. many times gear is sold because of intermittent problems that can't be solved, so you wind up buying someone's else's headache. The guarantee that you get when you buy used gear is essentially, " If it breaks in half after you buy it, you get to keep both halves" What even makes this worse, is if you bought it with lifetime, not only do you lose the cost of the gear, but your lifetime is also down the drain, because it is tied to the that gear.

To save a few dollars a month by buying used stuff, not my idea of a good decision. Reminds me of a sign I saw in Vermont when I was a kid, " We buy junk, we sell Antiques "
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post #16 of 19 Old 09-28-2014, 11:09 AM
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To save a few dollars a month by buying used stuff, not my idea of a good decision. Reminds me of a sign I saw in Vermont when I was a kid, " We buy junk, we sell Antiques "
Much like reading various posters. Adding them to my ignore list is an easy decision.
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post #17 of 19 Old 10-28-2014, 11:41 AM
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Does anyone know if TiVo is still selling refurb Premiers+lifetime at a discount?

- kelson h

The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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post #18 of 19 Old 10-28-2014, 12:10 PM
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Does anyone know if TiVo is still selling refurb Premiers+lifetime at a discount?
I'm pretty sure I received an email a few weeks ago offering a deal.. but I didn't save the email . . .

Don't ever make the MISTAKE of buying a Samsung TV..
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normal on a two month old set..
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post #19 of 19 Old 10-28-2014, 01:33 PM
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I'm pretty sure I received an email a few weeks ago offering a deal.. but I didn't save the email . . .
Thanks. I couldn't find anything on their website. I think I'll just give them a call.

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The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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