Sorry for this rambling post, but I'd rather get it all in one post rather than several separate posts.
You'd think a company like Channel Master who has so much at stake depending on the future of broadcast TV (they were once a leader in TV antennas) would go the extra mile to ensure that their product was not only acceptable, but exceptional. Looks like the DVR+ is already stumbling over it's shortcomings.
I would really liked to have seen the following items in the DVR+, maybe they will make it into the 2nd version:
4 tuners is almost a must, even though I don't live in a large market. Often when big news events occur, I like to be able to see and archive at least the 3 major networks newscasts and/or all the local coverage of area events. Now I have multiple PalDVRs hooked up to my main TV to allow recording more than 2 channels at once.
The ability to program remotes to specific DVR+ units, to allow the use of more than one DVR+ in the same room. The kids could then have their own DVR attached to their TV to use without having to mess with the parent's audio/video system. And if they still only have two tuners, there is a need for many of us to have multiple DVR+ units hooked up to the same system. The earlier DISH/Echostar/CM units had this feature. From looking at the user's manual, the DVR+ doesn't seem to have this feature.
A much more detailed user manual. It appears there are many things this box may be able to do that aren't mentioned at all.
Free and frequent updates to make sure that the boxes stay leading edge, rather than getting ignored when the next year's products come out.
A lot more internet functionality from the get go. This device should have had Netflix, YouTube, etc. ready to go from the start. Now we are just looking at what may be empty promises for future services. We've all learned that customer support for the previous units was extremely lame.
RF out for bypass directly to a TV, composite and component out. Nothing wrong with making it backwards compatible. Additional cost can't be much, the last of their DVRs had this.
A simple way to download recorded programs to our computers that can then be edited, stored, and played back on a variety of devices.
Build in the wifi instead of having to use a dongle. It's ridiculous to expect people to have to use one of these, when so many (cheaper) devices have them built-in.
The ability to use a customizable program guide like TitanTV to program the DVR+'s recordings directly from the home computer/laptop/tablet/phone etc. Much easier to program the DVR at one sitting via the internet than have to page/scroll through the program guide offered that shows only a few channels/hours at a time. I can currently go through looking at the TitanTV schedule and put a star on all the programs I want to see in the upcoming week in about 15 minutes. If the DVR+ had a guide that worked so well, it would be great. However from what I see you can only view a few channels at once over a few hour period. I don't want a guide that makes you do so much scrolling and jumping back and forth left and right to see all the schedule. Maybe make the DVR+ interactive with our computers?
Plug-in swappable drives, even if it means making the case larger. The DVR should come with a small drive installed for those that don't need a lot of storage, but the drive should be easily swappable without opening the case for those with greater storage needs. As long as this DVR+ really needs an added drive to operate, why not have the built-in slot for one rather than requiring outside add-ons?
The slim factor is really a worthless feature. It still takes a large footprint, so why not just make it thicker and include all that was left out of previous units (drive, fan, more connections, power supply). They should easily be able to overcome the heat build-up problem. Other manufacturers have.
There are probably many more things I'd like to see, I'll only really know when I get mine and actually experience the shortcomings.
Hopefully the next model will be more of an all-purpose OTA/Internet DVR instead of a compromised unit as this appears to be. I think we were all hoping for a little more. God knows we would have been glad to contribute ideas if Channel Master would have been willing to listen and communicate back with us. They may have been lurking on the forums, but they could have been much further ahead by actually engaging in the conversations. All they would have needed to do was ask for our wish lists, and then poll us to see which features the majority of us would have liked to see. Is their marketing research department really overlooking something so obvious?
Any way, I wish them luck. It's in all our best interests for them to create a successful product that meets all of our needs.
(edited for spelling errors)
Edited by wiscojim - 12/18/13 at 2:42pm