Originally Posted by jtbell
Good luck with that. South Carolina ETV has stopped sending out TVGOS already. My two Sony DVRs have listings until Monday. After that the guide is a solid wall of "No Listing" blocks. PSIP is not an option for those units. Even worse, they set their clock using TVGOS, and there's no way to set the clock manually. The next time the power goes out or the unit reboots for some reason, the clock reverts to midnight on January 1, 2004 or some such date.
I'll probably order a TiVo Premiere tomorrow and get a "lifetime" subscription, for a total of $650. That's only a bit more than I paid for one of the Sonys almost exactly seven years ago. (The other one was at a much cheaper clearance-sale price, fortunately.)
"I found this on a forum for TVGOS. It is a copy of a guy from NYC last year, don't blame me."
You, and perhaps six dozen other people who have been complaining on this type of forum since the digital switchover. Thats it. Sadly, nobody else cares: this problem has dropped so far to the bottom of cable company and Rovi priority lists that it will likely never have a solution. TVGOS was a nice recorder concept for frugal cable users for a few years, but the experiment failed spectacularly and the free ride is over: if you want a feature-rich point-and-click recorder/timer system today be prepared to pay thru the nose for it. Your choices are:
1. Continue to use your Panasonic, but in total manual VCR-like mode with no TVGOS grid of any kind.
2. Pay a monthly fee for the ComCast DVR or a TiVO. Connect either of them to your Panasonic when you need a DVD copy of something (the TiVO can also network to your PC for lossless file transfer).
3. Pay a rather hefty upfront one-time fee of $600 to buy a TiVO (or similar recorder) with lifetime guide subscription.
4. Pull every last hair out of your skull trying to make a home theater PC work like your Panasonic.
To be brutally honest, DVD/HDD recorders with TVGOS laid a gigantic egg, they didn't make significant money for anyone involved, and most consumers jumped on the cable rental PVR the second they could get access to one. The ratio of people willing to pay upwards of $100 monthly for a cable package that includes the PVR far far exceeds the number of people who wouldn't be caught dead spending more than $50 a month. Its simple business math: few consumers wanted to pay $400+ for a "kludgy" TVGOS recorder when they could get the fully-integrated ComCast PVR for a few dollars more a month on the cable bill they were paying anyway. So the Panasonics etc were discontinued in 2008 and not updated for digital cable signals, the TVGOS parent company lost interest in moving the platform forward while maintaining backwards compatibility, TV stations couldn't be bothered to keep analog TVGOS going after they switched to digital broadcasting, and the digital QAM regulations had so many gaping loopholes that ComCast and other cablecos took the opportunity to break cable compatibility with anything but their own hardware. The result today is most areas are denied access to the complete basic channel range unless they rent the cable PVR or jury-rig some convoluted way to make their DVD recorder and decoder box coexist.
But TVGOS has disappeared from one neighborhood after another: its an annoyance for cable companies to provide, they have no $ to gain by offering it, and hardly any subscribers are bothering them about it- it ain't coming back. Get used to setting your Panasonic manually, or get used spending a lot more money for the same functionality: the North American mass market chose the cable rental PVR by a factor of 96%. (Europe, Asia and Australia still have a wide selection of TVGOS-style recorders and steady pilot signals because they have no cable monopolies to interfere.) TVGOS corporate shills at Rovi will gas you to death with BS statements that "TVGOS is officially available in your area on X channels as of today." Understand this might be factually true, yet utterly impossible for you to actually use. Its gotten to the point in many neighborhoods where you need to know someone who knows someone at your local cable office who can personally direct a TVGOS generator into your distribution block (there are threads about this on dedicated TVGOS forums).