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2014 list of consumer available DVR's - Page 3

post #61 of 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Is the CM-7400 still being sold new? I can't seem to find one.
Channel Master is currently out of inventory, but is awaiting another shipment from their supplier. According to their sales rep. And it would be nice if this was the upgraded version with the built in cooling fan, but no confirmation on that. Antenna Logic retailer offers that Entone version for sale, but it lacks the Channel Master expanded programming guide service. And I would be curious if either the newer Entone version or forthcoming CM version have a better tuner, as the current 7400 tuner is weak/problematic, which was a dealbreaker for me.
post #62 of 472
Thread Starter 
Quote:
And it would be nice if this was the upgraded version with the built in cooling fan, but no confirmation on that.
It would be stupidly if it didn't.
Quote:
it lacks the Channel Master expanded programming guide service
Don't you deal with the 3rd party that supplies the programming? confused.gif
post #63 of 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Is the CM-7400 still being sold new? I can't seem to find one.

 

www.solidsignal.com

post #64 of 472
Thread Starter 
post #65 of 472
Nice work. Thanks. This comparison was desperately needed.

I have the TVIiX 6620N. The way I read your table, it can record to an external HD or an SD card. I didn't think that was possible. I can try it out if you want.

Also the skip forward and back is configurable (up to 999 seconds).

Also you can configure the recordings to automatically pad a configurable amount of time onto the front and back.

A few things I would also note about the 6620N is that you can record two channels at once WHILE at the same time playing back a previously recorded file or one of the two files currently being recorded (with the limitation that the playback stops at the point the live recording was at when you started playing) WHILE at the same time serving files through the network to another device (I use another TViX or PBO Core or PC). This is with 18.9Mbps ATSC data.

I've not successfully network played an 18.9Mbps file other than through wired ethernet. Not wireless. Not Homeplug AV. The Homeplug AV worked up to 11.6Mbps files so still impressive.

My friend with two TIVO Premieres says he is able to playback through wireless.
post #66 of 472
Thread Starter 
Quote:
The way I read your table, it can record to an external HD or an SD card. I didn't think that was possible. I can try it out if you want.
From the information I have collected, I believed it did. Please confirm or deny this.
Quote:
Also the skip forward and back is configurable (up to 999 seconds).
Corrected.
I'm not a fan of wireless networking. It's a easy way out full of problems. AFAIC, wired is the only way to go.

If you would also help me fill in the remaining question marks.
Thanks for the other details. Impossible to include everything in the list. redface.gif
Edited by videobruce - 4/9/13 at 5:11am
post #67 of 472
Thread Starter 
The biggest negative (other than a questionable future) is the cramped design. I don't know what they were thinking why they thought it had to be crammed in such a small box. It was a real bad decision, there was/is no practical reason for it. Rack width units (17" actual enclosure) have been standard for decades, everything fits and looks proper.
post #68 of 472
Recording is only possible to the internal SATA drive. You can only play files from USB or copy files to/from USB.
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

The biggest negative (other than a questionable future) is the cramped design. I don't know what they were thinking why they thought it had to be crammed in such a small box. [...] Rack width units (17" actual enclosure) have been standard for decades, everything fits and looks proper.

People like small devices and don't care what they look like inside. As long as it stays cool, which it does, it doesn't matter.
post #69 of 472
Excellent information here. Although should simple.tv be added to this list?
post #70 of 472
Thread Starter 
Quote:
People like small devices
Maybe some, but if you have other full size equipment (A/V receiver, DVD player etc.) a small unit as this is definitely out of place in more ways than one.
Thanks for that info on the record. I'll change that entry in the comparison. Someone along the way seemed to indicate otherwise.

.
Quote:
Although should simple.tv be added to this list?
Not according to this from their site:
Quote:
streams live and recorded TV programs to web-connected devices like the iPad, Roku media streamer, and PCs and Macs.,
It doesn't plug into your TV set,
A PC or Mac running Firefox, Chrome or Safari to setup your account online and to watch TV.
It's PC and mobile electronic toy related. Besides it has to be the dumbest looking thing I have seen. Looks more like a small plastic pillow or large pill box. rolleyes.gif
post #71 of 472
I only have experience with the DTVPal DVR. Here are my corrections:

Protect recordings from deletion -- Pal gives the option to mark any single recording as protected. Can also default all recordings to protected.
Auto pad recordings start & end in Guide -- option to select a default recording "start early" and "end late" times. That is a menu option, NOT right from the guide. But can select a show to record from guide, then edit start / end times.
Skip ahead or back time amounts -- 30 sec fwd, 10 sec back.
Edit recorded program name -- Yes (after recording is complete)
Firmware upgrade; Internet and/or USB -- USB only now, as Dish stopped supporting this. File can be found on 1st page of official AVS DTVPal DVR thread.
Add channels not in the original scan -- yes. not exactly sure what you mean by this. You can do an "add new channels" which will scan and look for additional channels. The Pal will auto-add channels on its own though. Interesting when tropo happens... You can also add a specific channel if you want to.
Add individual channels via physical numbers -- yes, by actual RF number, not the "mapped" number.
post #72 of 472
Thread Starter 
Will in MKE;
Funny, I just received a PM with much of what you discussed included.
Quote:
But can select a show to record from guide, then edit start / end times.
But, that isn't done "automatically". wink.gif
Quote:
Add channels not in the original scan -- yes. not exactly sure what you mean by this. You can do an "add new channels" which will scan and look for additional channels.
That's exactly what I meant. Adding additional channels not in the existing channel list. Something all tuners should have but don't. The Asians don't seem to understand this.

I will update the listings. Thanks.
post #73 of 472
Thread Starter 
Posts 3 & 4 updated.
post #74 of 472
Videobruce,

I realize that the ratings are YOURS in post #1. So I respect them.

However as now the owner of both the PHD-VRX and a PLADVR it is NOT fair or realistic to rate them both 3 stars as OTA DVRS. From my experience with both of them I would give the PHD-VRX a 1 rating. It has lots of bugs, the PQ is sketchy, the volume output is poor, and the controls of recordings is poor etc. I could go on with the issues. The PALDVR excels in all these things including a much bigger and better remote. So my comparison would be a 4 rating for the PALDVR and a 1 for the PHDVRX. Or if you are giving the PHD-VRX a 3 then the PALDVR has to get a 5 as it is head and shoulders a superior product for OTA viewing and recording.

I would like to hear from others who own both units. Perhaps I am the only one?
post #75 of 472
Thread Starter 
Assuming you are referring to the DTVPal/Channel Master CM7000;

1. The DTVPal is a much older model which has been long discontinued.
2. I only included it due to it's popularity and the reliability (from what I have read).
3. The case is hoaky and it doesn't have the additional features current models have.
4. After adjustments PQ with non starved bit rate programs is as good as any other DVR. Audio from the optical out is fine.
5. I rarely use the supplied remote with any piece of equipment unless it is by itself with no other equipment connected to it. VRX's small remote isn't a real issue. It's a easy & cheap fix to get a learning remote.

I took the above into account with taking the minuses of the VRX into account when I devised the ratings. If you look at the Moxi & TiVo, you will see both are now three stars. If you read the next post you will see why. The overall dismal state of DVR's today is disgusting at best.

I don't know what you mean by "the controls of recordings is poor". You don't have to go on with the issues, I'm more than aware of them if you have read post 1174 (the last laundry list) unless there is something I missed.
post #76 of 472
There is no mention of Replay TV? I switched to TIVO serveral years ago when there was a death nell, but I see there is still a somewhat active trade on eBay.rolleyes.gif
post #77 of 472
Thread Starter 
That's really going back a bit isn't it?
post #78 of 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by Will in MKE View Post

I only have experience with the DTVPal DVR. Here are my corrections:

Protect recordings from deletion -- Pal gives the option to mark any single recording as protected. Can also default all recordings to protected.
Auto pad recordings start & end in Guide -- option to select a default recording "start early" and "end late" times. That is a menu option, NOT right from the guide. But can select a show to record from guide, then edit start / end times.
Skip ahead or back time amounts -- 30 sec fwd, 10 sec back.
Edit recorded program name -- Yes (after recording is complete)
Firmware upgrade; Internet and/or USB -- USB only now, as Dish stopped supporting this. File can be found on 1st page of official AVS DTVPal DVR thread.
Add channels not in the original scan -- yes. not exactly sure what you mean by this. You can do an "add new channels" which will scan and look for additional channels. The Pal will auto-add channels on its own though. Interesting when tropo happens... You can also add a specific channel if you want to.
Add individual channels via physical numbers -- yes, by actual RF number, not the "mapped" number.
That's weird. I just discovered this guide and sent videobruce most of the same corrections via PM, right before you posted this.

The odds must be crazy wink.gif
post #79 of 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

Assuming you are referring to the DTVPal/Channel Master CM7000;

1. The DTVPal is a much older model which has been long discontinued.
2. I only included it due to it's popularity and the reliability (from what I have read).
3. The case is hoaky and it doesn't have the additional features current models have.
4. After adjustments PQ with non starved bit rate programs is as good as any other DVR. Audio from the optical out is fine.
5. I rarely use the supplied remote with any piece of equipment unless it is by itself with no other equipment connected to it. VRX's small remote isn't a real issue. It's a easy & cheap fix to get a learning remote.

I took the above into account with taking the minuses of the VRX into account when I devised the ratings. If you look at the Moxi & TiVo, you will see both are now three stars. If you read the next post you will see why. The overall dismal state of DVR's today is disgusting at best.

I don't know what you mean by "the controls of recordings is poor". You don't have to go on with the issues, I'm more than aware of them if you have read post 1174 (the last laundry list) unless there is something I missed.

While the PALDVR is older and discontinued, it is MORE ADVANCED in OTA recording features and quality than the VRX. If you are doing a comparison between the 2 the PALDVR is head and shoulders a better buy.

THE PALDVR is much easier to setup recordings, see the recordings and view them than the VRX. SKipping through a recording and deleting is easier. The info associate with a recording is better. I could go on with more features that the PALDVR has that surpasses the VRX but I think you know that already. That's why I was puzzled by your rating the units the same at 3 stars.

I would like to see others who own both comment.

Proof is that knowing what I now know about both units and if I had to buy another OTA DVR, and I had a choice between the PALDVR (because it was still available) and the EPI-VRX I would without hesitation buy the PALDVR and recommend that over the EPI unit unequivocally.
post #80 of 472
Thread Starter 
But, all of that only applies to when it was still currently sold new. I don't doubt, based on "issues" the DTVPal is superior. It was designed for Joe Sixpack.

But splitting hairs on a three star rating is just that. Again, I'm taking everything into account, not just the pluses or just the minuses. I could of gone to a ten star rating, but then if one was 4 and the other 6, it would still be wrong. Actually, the "current and recently discontinued" would eliminate this from the chart all together along with a few others. wink.gif

BTW, I did own one, actually two. One went to my brother in law, the other was sold, but that was years ago.

.
Edited by videobruce - 4/11/13 at 10:29am
post #81 of 472
I would say, despite its age and discontinuance, the DTVPal is still one of the best DVRs in the "OTA no-fee" category. But of course that's not what everyone's looking for. Its lack of analog and QAM tuners makes it useless for cable customers, and its lack of a paid guide option is a big drawback for many. It also has a few other drawbacks. I find them all to be minor quibbles, but YMMV:

1. It doesn't spin down the HD in standby, so it uses too much power IMO.
2. The DST bugs: some users have no problems at all, while others find them intolerable. For me they're an annoyance but hardly fatal.
3. Videobruce is right about the case design: it's hokey. I think they tried too hard to give it a TiVo "look & feel." At least the CM version lacks the silly-looking graphics of the Dish version rolleyes.gif
4. It lacks an S-video output, so picture quality on older SD TVs is sub-par. (Quality on HDTVs is excellent.)
5. The RF pass-through is nice in theory but useless in practice - when engaged, it shuts down not only the RF modulator like a VCR would, but all non-RF outputs too. Might as well just put it in standby.
6. The manual is lacking, and official support is essentially non-existent. Luckily we have AVSForum (as do all these DVRs) biggrin.gif

On the plus side, it has an intuitive, but not overly "cute," user interface similar to Dish's satellite receivers; a nice "universal" remote that will save you from having to buy one; expansion up to 1 TB (internal, or even external, although not through the built-in USB port); a grid-style guide that's maintained in the background, so it doesn't slow down your browsing; and most other standard DVR features (except name-based recording, which is probably an advantage with only PSIP to populate its program guide, since it'll record even if the guide doesn't get timely updates).

Obviously a new DTVPal or CM-7000Pal is a rare find these days. I think Antennalogic still has a few if you're willing to pay his prices. Used Pals are still fairly common on eBay though.

All things considered, I'd give it 3 1/2 out of 5 stars if I were doing an AVSForum review (which allows half stars), but how you'd key that into a post is beyond me.
post #82 of 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

andydrew said - Although should simple.tv be added to this list?

videobruce said - Not according to this from their site:

streams live and recorded TV programs to web-connected devices like the iPad, Roku media streamer, and PCs and Macs.,
It doesn't plug into your TV set,
A PC or Mac running Firefox, Chrome or Safari to setup your account online and to watch TV.

It's PC and mobile electronic toy related. Besides it has to be the dumbest looking thing I have seen. Looks more like a small plastic pillow or large pill box. rolleyes.gif

Although simple.tv does meet the requirements that you laid out in the first post of this thread:

"The requirements are;
1. Available for purchase in the US,
2. A stand alone, combined ATSC and/or QAM HD tuner(s) with an internal HDD and or provision for one or, one that has at least one USB and/or eSATA port(s) for an external HDD."

Although it does not plug directly into your set you can view on your set with a Roku, AppleTV with an airplay device, as well as any computing device that can hook to your tv.
post #83 of 472
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Although it does not plug directly into your set you can view on your set with a Roku, AppleTV with an airplay device
Mobile electronic toys are a entirely separate category that doesn't even come close to fitting in this sub forum.
Besides, on a scale of one to ten, ten being the worst as far as looks & design, this gets a nine. It is so far out in left field, it doesn't even warrant editing the requirements.
Edited by videobruce - 4/12/13 at 5:32am
post #84 of 472
How about the Dish Hopper? That device was supposed to be adding tuners for ATSC recording.
post #85 of 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by DB100 View Post

How about the Dish Hopper? That device was supposed to be adding tuners for ATSC recording.
Can anyone(not just someone wanting to pay money to Dish) purchase and use the Hopper?
If the answer is no then IMO it does NOT belong in this thread nor does any of the many other pay TV DVRs that also happen to record OTA. Besides have you checked out the OPs chart.... It's maxed out now as far as models, my guess is some of the older ones will need to be deleted as newer such devices come around. Only so much width he has access to smile.gif
post #86 of 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by andydrew View Post


Although simple.tv does meet the requirements that you laid out in the first post of this thread:

 

As does WMC, XBMC and many others... what one doesn't understand one dismisses... as to not fitting into this sub forum... well my rather ill fitting DVR thread has fifteen thousand reasons to support other wise.


Edited by Charles R - 4/12/13 at 7:24am
post #87 of 472
I agree that folks should consider PC software-based DVRs as additional alternatives. They're not for everyone but they're often more functional than the commercially-available boxes compared here. I think the point of this thread is to compare the commercial boxes, though. But I would encourage anyone looking for a new DVR to click on your sig and read a bit before making a final decision. I built a little AMD PC with Win 7 and have been very happy with it.
post #88 of 472
I think it was quite clear from the start that the focus of the OP was on out-of-the-box stand-alone HDTV DVR's that one could buy outright on Amazon, eBay, etc. and then plug into your TV and coax and use. That precludes cable DVR's and PC-based solutions, among others. If you could buy a fully configured PC-based DVR running WMC or XBMC or NextPVR or Media Portal or BeyondTV or any other of a number of DVR packages, that could be taken out of the box, plugged in and used immediately without any thought or interaction with Windows, then it should be in the list -- but AFAIK you can't and as such it is simply outside the scope of this thread. Actually given the number of software DVR packages out there, they could easily merit their own separate comparison thread as a companion to this.

Eventually the focus will narrow to OTA. With the recent FCC ruling, clear QAM is on borrowed time. Once Comcast starts the ball rolling to encrypt everything it will spread very quickly.
post #89 of 472
Thread Starter 
Posts 3 & 4 updated.
post #90 of 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

Actually given the number of software DVR packages out there, they could easily merit their own separate comparison thread as a companion to this.
That's a good idea. Charles is most familiar with WMC and somewhat with XBMC, but if someone put up a DVR software comparison chart that included WMC, XBMC, MediaPortal, etc., and maybe also TiVo for reference, I think it could be as useful as this one.
Quote:
Eventually the focus will narrow to OTA. With the recent FCC ruling, clear QAM is on borrowed time. Once Comcast starts the ball rolling to encrypt everything it will spread very quickly.
I think TWC already has, although I'm not a TWC customer so I can't say for sure.

If you're looking at CableCARD devices (I hate that crazy capitalization; is CARD some weird acronym?) you're limited to Moxi, TiVo, and certain PC tuners AFAIK. That would be another reason for a PC software comparison chart.
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