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The Official AVS TiVo "Series4" Premiere topic - Page 73

post #2161 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by atmusky View Post

Well kind of, there is actually a strong market for DVRs, about 40% of all households have a DVR that is over 40 million DVRs so pretty big and strong market. What there isn't a market for is a cable only DVR that requires you to also rent a cable card and use a tuning adapter and can take days to get setup. The bottom line is people want a DVR that is easy to setup like a cable or satellite DVR, plug the cable in and it works with a short setup, not one that requires you to jump through hoops like you have to with a stand alone (third party) DVRs. Price can also play into this but in my area TWC DVRs are not cheaper than TiVo but of course TWC does everything possible to make it difficult to use a Tivo..

The cable company DVRs are also required to use cable cards(at least the ones put into service after a certain date a few years ago). But those cable cards are also pre-installed.
post #2162 of 3301
And they don't need the stupid, buggy tuning adapters for those unfortunate enough to have TWC etc.
post #2163 of 3301
They also support bi-directional communication for those who want capability of ordering VOD services.
post #2164 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post

Not all DVRs use the TiVo model; some of them do work like VCRs, so it isn't strictly true that DVRs require too many services to use them. They won't become mainstream because their many components are essentially as expensive to produce as computers, and people don't want to buy them at the price point companies would have to charge to turn a profit on the units themselves. TiVo bypasses that problem by making its money through subscription fees and advertising, but selling VCR-style DVRs would require the manufacturer to make its money during the initial sale of the hardware.

I think you stumbled on the main problem is that every thing made now is like a computer. My A/V receiver, OPPO, TV all have software that needs constant updating in order to work. In the case of my OPPO BDP 83 is looks like there is a hardware limitation with the decoder chip that might circumvent any firmware patches in the future to fix compatibility issues. So now now instead of using a product for years until a peice of hardware fails, like VCRs and DVD players, devices are now being render obsolete because they are either left to wither on the vine or the hardware put in them is no longer compatible with newer software. So on top of the cost to manufacture a device, the companies also have to continue spending money to update software in the devices. Just look at the problems with some of the recorders that are being talked about in the HDTV recorder threads. There is just to much involved now to make a simple device function properly.
post #2165 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by atmusky View Post

Well kind of, there is actually a strong market for DVRs, about 40% of all households have a DVR that is over 40 million DVRs so pretty big and strong market. What there isn't a market for is a cable only DVR that requires you to also rent a cable card and use a tuning adapter and can take days to get setup. The bottom line is people want a DVR that is easy to setup like a cable or satellite DVR, plug the cable in and it works with a short setup, not one that requires you to jump through hoops like you have to with a stand alone (third party) DVRs. Price can also play into this but in my area TWC DVRs are not cheaper than TiVo but of course TWC does everything possible to make it difficult to use a Tivo..

Unfortunately this is almost impossible anymore as it will be expensive to produce a device that will work with a cable company feed. Pretty soon all cable companies will encrypt their entire lineups so any device will need some decryption hardware built in. Also the devices will have to support tru2way in order to get some type of working guide and also have the ability to decode an MPEG 4 stream as cable companies are already starting to move in this direction. The only device that has all these capabilities is the Tivos so I do not see how it would be possible for somebody to produce a lower cost device that would work. The consumer will also have to be willing to pay up front for the device. Renting a DVR is cost affective to most consumers as it is a small monthly fee in their cable bill and most do not mind paying it. People are looking for convenience with out hassles.

The reason for the tuning adapters is the Tivo has no hardware inside of it to communicate back to the headend so the tuning adapter does this. Once the cable companies start using IP for the return path the Tivo will be able to do this through its internet port and no longer need the adater. The one thing that gets lost on everybody is that cable and satellite companies a privately owned closed looped systems and are not free to use. Any hardware made by any CE manufacturer will have to be made to fit the specifications of the cable or satellite systems. This is where the costs come in. The CableCard was devised by the cable industry for this purpose. Also cable does not share the same modulation scheme as the OTA providers as they did with NTCS so now the tuners have to be designed to meet both modulation schemes. Going forward it looks like the Tivo will be the only device capable to meet the standards so don't look for any cheaper alternatives.
post #2166 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jed1 View Post

I think you stumbled on the main problem is that every thing made now is like a computer. My A/V receiver, OPPO, TV all have software that needs constant updating in order to work. In the case of my OPPO BDP 83 is looks like there is a hardware limitation with the decoder chip that might circumvent any firmware patches in the future to fix compatibility issues. So now now instead of using a product for years until a peice of hardware fails, like VCRs and DVD players, devices are now being render obsolete because they are either left to wither on the vine or the hardware put in them is no longer compatible with newer software. So on top of the cost to manufacture a device, the companies also have to continue spending money to update software in the devices. Just look at the problems with some of the recorders that are being talked about in the HDTV recorder threads. There is just to much involved now to make a simple device function properly.

You may have stumbled upon the paradoxical nature of consumer electronics these days, in that people seemed to prefer the reliability of devices that "just worked" and required little maintenance, yet they now also expect such devices to have so many features and abilities that the simplicity of yesterday's electronics is no longer enticing. Yes, a VCR was a simple and reliable device, but people expect their DVRs to have so many extra functions compared to a VCR that any company making a DVR with a similarly limited feature set would be an instant subject of ridicule. Of course, there is no law that says devices running complicated software must also be rife with bugs; alternative DVR options equipped with more competently written firmware could be far more reliable than they are, but it seems only novice programmers and beta testers are tasked with bringing these products to market.

As for updates, I would submit that they are not always as necessary as you suggest. Most products will continue to funciton without the latest firmware, and the fact that software constantly asks to retrieve updates does not mean that it constantly needs updating. Even before the days of Internet-connected devices that could retrieve software updates, updated electronic devices were constantly being introduced to keep the wheel of consumerism turning (You don't have a Hi-Fi VCR? How passé!); the introduction of Internet-based software updates has just accelerated the arrival of devices' planned obsolescence dates. Just because something is obsolete does not inherently detract from its usefulness, and as long as a device in its current state performs all the functions its user desires, updating it is unnecessary, especially if said update provides no added desirable functionality.
post #2167 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post

You may have stumbled upon the paradoxical nature of consumer electronics these days, in that people seemed to prefer the reliability of devices that "just worked" and required little maintenance, yet they now also expect such devices to have so many features and abilities that the simplicity of yesterday's electronics is no longer enticing. Yes, a VCR was a simple and reliable device, but people expect their DVRs to have so many extra functions compared to a VCR that any company making a DVR with a similarly limited feature set would be an instant subject of ridicule. Of course, there is no law that says devices running complicated software must also be rife with bugs; alternative DVR options equipped with more competently written firmware could be far more reliable than they are, but it seems only novice programmers and beta testers are tasked with bringing these products to market.

As for updates, I would submit that they are not always as necessary as you suggest. Most products will continue to funciton without the latest firmware, and the fact that software constantly asks to retrieve updates does not mean that it constantly needs updating. Even before the days of Internet-connected devices that could retrieve software updates, updated electronic devices were constantly being introduced to keep the wheel of consumerism turning (You don't have a Hi-Fi VCR? How passé!); the introduction of Internet-based software updates has just accelerated the arrival of devices' planned obsolescence dates. Just because something is obsolete does not inherently detract from its usefulness, and as long as a device in its current state performs all the functions its user desires, updating it is unnecessary, especially if said update provides no added desirable functionality.

I would add to this that it is the 20 to 30 year olds that expect all these features but want to pay little or nothing for them. This group thinks that there must be an app to control everything and probably spending most of their waking hours playing with their phones. This is the age group that the industry is marketing to. The 40 to ? year olds are the ones having the biggest problems with all the changes. Bear in mind there are tech savvy older people but they are a small minority of the population. Try explaining how to change the input on the tv as they never heard of this. These are the group of people who never figured out how to set the clock on their vcrs yet. Trying to explain to these people that they need an internet connection to use certain features on their tv is also alien to them. They blame this on the cable company as they think it is them trying to squeeze more money out of them. As I said to Joe Kustra seilling Tivos at Walmart maybe a bad idea because most of the customers have no clue as to what is required for them to work. They are conditioned to think you take them home and hook them up like the old vcr (old school plug and play= hook cable feed to, plug into outlet, and turn on and use).

As fo the updates I think it is Blu ray that is the most problematic as the security keeps changing which in order to get the disc to play the player will need a firmware update. I been at the HD game since 2004 and I am starting to accumulate an increasing number of devices that no longer can play newer titles. There is some titles that my OPPO BDP 83 have trouble with the sound which OPPO says requires mediatek to do something but they decided not to becasue the chip is out of production. I also picked the wrong side in the format war debacle so I have that orphaned hardware/software laying around. There is the earlier Tivos that will not work with MPEG 4 compression, which the cable industry is changing to so these devices are going to be rendered obsolete because of a hardware limitation. I think that all this tech was rolled out to early instead of waiting until some of the standards were finalized.
I also agree with you as I would like to know who is writing the software for these things and if these people are college educated. If so then it doesn't speak to highly of the colleges that handed them the degrees and for what price. The ePVision PHD-VRX fits into this category.
post #2168 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jed1 View Post

There is the earlier Tivos that will not work with MPEG 4 compression, which the cable industry is changing to so these devices are going to be rendered obsolete because of a hardware limitation. I think that all this tech was rolled out to early instead of waiting until some of the standards were finalized.

If I'm not mistaken, the UK was in the process of switching to MPEG-2 for their DTV system, but they ended up halting the transition and revising the standards to make their DTV transition employ MPEG-4 instead. I rather wish the US had done the same thing, and OTA here will now be stuck with MPEG-2 for a long time, most likely. I wasn't aware that certain TiVo models couldn't decode MPEG-4. That would be a rather serious limitation for pay TV users, although even among devices that support the base profiles, MPEG-4 compatibility isn't universal. I don't know of any hardware players that can handle 10-bit AVC, for example.
post #2169 of 3301
Got a TiVo Premiere. Set up was about 1.5 hours for the first 24 hours worth of grid.

I have a lot to learn about it.

I am OTA only and both tuners so far seem fine, both clear and sharp on all the stations so far; but have not explored that too much.

Also went through the HuLu Plus demo downloads. Very blury picture there; not at all razor sharp and smooth like the OTA. If that is all they can do for that, that won't work.

The automatic set up selected 1080i for my plasma. So everything sent to the plasma is changed to 1080i. Is there a way to set that too AutoMatic Native mode. Send the picture to the Plasma the way it comes in?

Thanks.
post #2170 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post

Got a TiVo Premiere. Set up was about 1.5 hours for the first 24 hours worth of grid.

I have a lot to learn about it.

I am OTA only and both tuners so far seem fine, both clear and sharp on all the stations so far; but have not explored that too much.

Also went through the HuLu Plus demo downloads. Very blury picture there; not at all razor sharp and smooth like the OTA. If that is all they can do for that, that won't work.

The automatic set up selected 1080i for my plasma. So everything sent to the plasma is changed to 1080i. Is there a way to set that too AutoMatic Native mode. Send the picture to the Plasma the way it comes in?

Thanks.
Settings->Video then check all the boxes. This (as the info/help button says) will pass everything as received.
post #2171 of 3301
Been awhile since I did it but yes you can chose native out. Think it's under video in setup menu. Select each resolution you want it to output.
post #2172 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jed1 View Post

I would add to this that it is the 20 to 30 year olds that expect all these features but want to pay little or nothing for them. This group thinks that there must be an app to control everything and probably spending most of their waking hours playing with their phones. This is the age group that the industry is marketing to.
That is true but funny. Funny because they are marketing to the demographic with the least amount of disposable income. Some day they will come up with an orgasm-app for their phones and tablets, at which point the streets will empty and the human race will slowly fade away.
post #2173 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

That is true but funny. Funny because they are marketing to the demographic with the least amount of disposable income. Some day they will come up with an orgasm-app for their phones and tablets, at which point the streets will empty and the human race will slowly fade away.
That's good. Down with Siri - up with Soma.
post #2174 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post

Got a TiVo Premiere. Set up was about 1.5 hours for the first 24 hours worth of grid.

I have a lot to learn about it.

The automatic set up selected 1080i for my plasma. So everything sent to the plasma is changed to 1080i. Is there a way to set that too AutoMatic Native mode. Send the picture to the Plasma the way it comes in?
Just make a clean break from your past.

I'm OTA and run my TiVo native to my plasma because I think the plasma does a better job scaling 720 to 1080. The down side to native is that there is an HDMI handshake every time you change the channel to tell the TV what resolution is incoming. That makes channel surfing pretty slow. You can press the channel advance several times in rapid succession and skip over the intermediates to get where you want to be. I find it better to get used to bringing up the guide and surfing by reading the listings, then selecting the channel to go to with one click.

YMMV
post #2175 of 3301
I started with Native but switched to 1080i fixed for faster channel changes, a while later I didn't like what I saw with 480i and mostly 720p upconverted to 1080i by my Tivo so I switched back to native. I'm back to 1080i fixed again because a) I mostly watch 1080i channels and b) I really detest the long delay when changing channels and going into the menus. Also with my older Tivo HD in native if I'm watching a SD channel my guide will also be in SD and somewhat hard to read.
post #2176 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Settings->Video then check all the boxes. This (as the info/help button says) will pass everything as received.

I will look for the "info/help" tommorow, I have missed it first time through and never found "native"

There was a separate line that said something like 1080p at 24frames pass through? I guess that is for NetFlix and Amazon?
post #2177 of 3301
Native is a older Tivo option, with the Premier to get native you check all the resolutions listed and yes 1080p/24 would only be for streaming.
post #2178 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post

I will look for the "info/help" tommorow, I have missed it first time through and never found "native"
Like jjeff said, there is no native. I never hit the info button until today. Getting to page two of the help was fun also.

I set it to 1080i like everything else except my BD and the Mag. Slow HDMI switching on my TV.
post #2179 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjeff View Post

I started with Native but switched to 1080i fixed for faster channel changes, a while later I didn't like what I saw with 480i and mostly 720p upconverted to 1080i by my Tivo so I switched back to native. I'm back to 1080i fixed again because a) I mostly watch 1080i channels and b) I really detest the long delay when changing channels and going into the menus. Also with my older Tivo HD in native if I'm watching a SD channel my guide will also be in SD and somewhat hard to read.

This. I've never seen a diff with my Tivo's pic quality on any HD channel whether it's fixed 1080i or native, so I leave it on 1080i to avoid the annoying delays. And I have a decent Panny plasma.
post #2180 of 3301
The only thing I notice different when the Tivo does the conversion is occasional visible interlace lines in areas of movement. It doesn't happen all the time but once I started noticing it, I can easily spot it now. I don't get those lines(looks like every other line is missing) when sending native to my TV. The lines are visible when upconverting 480i or 720p to 1080i. I live with the occasional lines to gain faster channel scans and a better looking guide when watching a 480i channel.
post #2181 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjeff View Post

Native is a older Tivo option, with the Premier to get native you check all the resolutions listed and yes 1080p/24 would only be for streaming.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Like jjeff said, there is no native. I never hit the info button until today. Getting to page two of the help was fun also.

I set it to 1080i like everything else except my BD and the Mag. Slow HDMI switching on my TV.

Thanks Jeff and Joe, I will give it a try today........it now makes a little more sense. If I don’t like what it does I will just go back to 1080i.

Side Note: My computer has been crashing lately (bad hard disk I think), so now I got it fired up with a boot disk UGH always something. At least I got all data backup Yeah.

I DO like the two tuners in the TiVo. So far my two tuners are recording perfect, but we have not really watched shows all the way through yet.

I am Still not consistent with the imitation smart que adjust, don’t have it quite figured out yet. So far it is hit and miss for me, sometimes I hit the show just right and other times I am a couple of minutes off ugh.
post #2182 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

That is true but funny. Funny because they are marketing to the demographic with the least amount of disposable income. Some day they will come up with an orgasm-app for their phones and tablets, at which point the streets will empty and the human race will slowly fade away.

LOL! And here us older people where constantly told that the human race would end from nuclear war.eek.gif
post #2183 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post

If I'm not mistaken, the UK was in the process of switching to MPEG-2 for their DTV system, but they ended up halting the transition and revising the standards to make their DTV transition employ MPEG-4 instead. I rather wish the US had done the same thing, and OTA here will now be stuck with MPEG-2 for a long time, most likely. I wasn't aware that certain TiVo models couldn't decode MPEG-4. That would be a rather serious limitation for pay TV users, although even among devices that support the base profiles, MPEG-4 compatibility isn't universal. I don't know of any hardware players that can handle 10-bit AVC, for example.

I know for a fact that the series 4 Tivos can decode a MPEG 4 QAM 256 stream and also tune to 1GHz. There is some tivo forum members that have Cox cable and Cox started the change over. Basically any device with clear QAM will be rendered useless by this and the total encryption of the line ups. Even older cable card devices like my two kuros will no longer receive channels when the change to MPEG 4 happens here. This is one of the main reasons why I am looking into getting two Tivos as I own both of my M cards. I just noticed this morning that Amazon no longer has any 4 tuner premiers to sell. I wonder if Tivo is running out of them. Rumor is that there is a new Tivo coming soon, possibly with 6 tuners.
post #2184 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by HoustonPerson View Post

Got a TiVo Premiere. Set up was about 1.5 hours for the first 24 hours worth of grid.

I have a lot to learn about it.

I am OTA only and both tuners so far seem fine, both clear and sharp on all the stations so far; but have not explored that too much.

Also went through the HuLu Plus demo downloads. Very blury picture there; not at all razor sharp and smooth like the OTA. If that is all they can do for that, that won't work.

The automatic set up selected 1080i for my plasma. So everything sent to the plasma is changed to 1080i. Is there a way to set that too AutoMatic Native mode. Send the picture to the Plasma the way it comes in?

Thanks.
Hulu Plus will never look as good as good OTA, just like Netflix or most streaming. The best looking video outside of playing a blu ray disc would be a download from Amazon.
post #2185 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jed1 View Post

This is one of the main reasons why I am looking into getting two Tivos as I own both of my M cards. I just noticed this morning that Amazon no longer has any 4 tuner premiers to sell. I wonder if Tivo is running out of them. Rumor is that there is a new Tivo coming soon, possibly with 6 tuners.

I didn't know that you could purchase your own cable cards. I was wondering if you ran into this problem... I pay for HD digital service from my cable company. My set top box gets all the channels that I pay for, but my DHG never did. All the HD cannels never showed up on the DHG. When I got the TIvo, I had the same issue. Had a guy come out and he checked and said the cards were never fully activated. He called the office and activated them and both DVR's got ALL the channels the STB did. I was pretty happy until the next bill came in. Each card that was activated (fully) was charged an additional $12.00 fee per month. I called up and they told me that in order to get the HD channels, you have to have a STB. If you do it by way of a cable card, that is considered a set top box and you have to pay the fee for THEIR box even though you're using YOUR equipment. I failed to see the logic. So even though you pay an extra fee for HD service, you can't get it without paying ANOTHER additional fee for some kind of HD box...whether it's yours or theirs.

My assumption here would be that owning your own cards would only save you the two or three dollar fee for the card, but they'd still get you if you wanted the HD service activated through that card. Is that correct?
post #2186 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by linkstur View Post

My assumption here would be that owning your own cards would only save you the two or three dollar fee for the card, but they'd still get you if you wanted the HD service activated through that card. Is that correct?

I've probably said it a hundred times, but all cable is local. Jed1 and I have the same cable corporation but different offices. I called my office a while back and they told me I could buy my own STB but they wouldn't activate it. They are a lot better than some companies and usually publish the clear QAM channel numbers when things move. But they did screw me when I bought my TiVo. I was prepared to pay $3 a month for the card, but since the STB for my HD service was part of a "package" and since I returned it, I was now going to have my rate increased because I was now "a la carte". They didn't mention that until after they received my old STB back. I never used a cable card with my DHG since only premium channels are scrambled. For now.

M-Cards are cheap on eBay. Call your local office and ask if they will activate it.
post #2187 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjeff View Post

I started with Native but switched to 1080i fixed for faster channel changes, a while later I didn't like what I saw with 480i and mostly 720p upconverted to 1080i by my Tivo so I switched back to native.

 

I always found TiVo seriously lacking as far as scaling goes. Especially with Netflix (although I guess it could be better with their new software).

post #2188 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jed1 View Post

I know for a fact that the series 4 Tivos can decode a MPEG 4 QAM 256 stream and also tune to 1GHz. There is some tivo forum members that have Cox cable and Cox started the change over. Basically any device with clear QAM will be rendered useless by this and the total encryption of the line ups. Even older cable card devices like my two kuros will no longer receive channels when the change to MPEG 4 happens here. This is one of the main reasons why I am looking into getting two Tivos as I own both of my M cards. I just noticed this morning that Amazon no longer has any 4 tuner premiers to sell. I wonder if Tivo is running out of them. Rumor is that there is a new Tivo coming soon, possibly with 6 tuners.

The six tuner TiVo is no rumor. They showed the Pace six tuner DVR last year. But it is really meant for the cable companies. The question is if they will bring a version of it to retail. The retail market is still contracting while their market with the cable companies is expanding by leaps and bounds.

And I'm on FiOS which has several MPEG4 channels. My Series four boxes can tune and record those MPEG4 channels with no problems.
post #2189 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

M-Cards are cheap on eBay. Call your local office and ask if they will activate it.

They're cheap because most cableCos will not activate them, just like all the stolen/abandoned STBs and DVRs you see on fleabay. The best you're going to get is a channel map but you won't be able to view any encrypted channels (i.e. anything other than the locals on most). The only cableCos we've heard that let you buy your own cards to activate are small operators - it's not going to happen on Comcast, TWC, Cox, Verizon, Brighthouse etc.
post #2190 of 3301
Quote:
Originally Posted by linkstur View Post

I didn't know that you could purchase your own cable cards. I was wondering if you ran into this problem... I pay for HD digital service from my cable company. My set top box gets all the channels that I pay for, but my DHG never did. All the HD cannels never showed up on the DHG. When I got the TIvo, I had the same issue. Had a guy come out and he checked and said the cards were never fully activated. He called the office and activated them and both DVR's got ALL the channels the STB did. I was pretty happy until the next bill came in. Each card that was activated (fully) was charged an additional $12.00 fee per month. I called up and they told me that in order to get the HD channels, you have to have a STB. If you do it by way of a cable card, that is considered a set top box and you have to pay the fee for THEIR box even though you're using YOUR equipment. I failed to see the logic. So even though you pay an extra fee for HD service, you can't get it without paying ANOTHER additional fee for some kind of HD box...whether it's yours or theirs.

My assumption here would be that owning your own cards would only save you the two or three dollar fee for the card, but they'd still get you if you wanted the HD service activated through that card. Is that correct?

Back in 2004 cablecards where rare and the only way I could get one in my system was to buy it. The first one they gave to me for free since I was the first person in the company to use one. The second one I had to pay $125 which I got a few years later. If I want any additional cards I can only rent the cards as they tell me the FCC will no longer allow them to sell them. When I transistioned to Joes system last year they even gave me two new M cards for free to replace mine as they were having trouble on their end.

If I understand what you are saying is that there are charging you a HD channel fee for each device. Joe and I only pay once for HD which is $13/month. Since I also have the Pace DVR that fee is included in the package I have. So I get every channel on my two cablecards as I get with the Pace at no additional charge. If I get two Tivos and put my two cablecards in them then my bill would stay the same and if I return the Pace DVR then my bill will drop by 8 dollars per month.
If comcast is charging a HD channel package fee per device, I too find that totally stupid. A lot of people in my system are mad at SECV becasue they made a lot of upgrades and just eliminated almost all the analog channels so now they want comcast to come here as they think that they would be a better deal. I have to start wearing depends as I pee my pants laughing every time I hear this as they do not know how expensive comcast is and how good we have it with SECV.
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