Amazon RECAST OTA DVR formerly known as "Frank" - Page 15 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #421 of 623 Old 04-15-2019, 02:03 PM
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Not sure if anyone noticed, but the Recast (and other FireTV devices) are on sale right now:

https://smile.amazon.com/b/?ie=UTF8&...=ods_fs_smp_cp
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post #422 of 623 Old 04-15-2019, 02:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 645824 View Post
Here is a nice tear-down of the Recast:

http://www.aftvnews.com/fire-tv-reca...r-the-air-dvr/


I would rather just swap-out the internal drive instead of hanging an external drive o nthe Recast. However, the tear-down poster, Elias Saba, didn't have anything further on this.


Another poster, Kevin, responded that there is some additional block info that needs to be copied over:



ADB is an android command. Since the internal disk is ext3 (or ext4), then there should be a linux equivalent process to copy the disk's image, pop in a new disk, then restore that image.


Has anyone tried this yet? It isn't clear why Amazon hasn't decided to put an 8TB disk in the Recast yet. Maybe thermal reasons? which drove them to the external solution...

Scott
8TB 2.5" Drive? If they are as reliable as the 5TB 2.5" drives, I wouldn't put them in a product I have to support. I suspect it is a combination of supportability, what can be had at volume prices, and what they think people will pay for their product. Putting a 8TB drive in it would probably make the price such that not many people would be willing to buy it.
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post #423 of 623 Old 04-17-2019, 01:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tveli View Post
Please advise me about whether there an Alexa/Recast solution via which Alexa will tune her real TV to MSNBC or local news channel!
Such a setup could be a "WIN".
I didn't think there was a way, but it looks like it's possible. I found this Amazon Fire TV blog post, updated December 2018, about Alexa integration with third party apps. If the app supports it, you can say "Alexa, go to MSNBC". Looking at their list, the only live TV apps that support Alexa integration are Playstation Vue and Hulu with Live TV.
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post #424 of 623 Old 04-17-2019, 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by mshaver76 View Post
I didn't think there was a way, but it looks like it's possible. I found this Amazon Fire TV blog post, updated December 2018, about Alexa integration with third party apps. If the app supports it, you can say "Alexa, go to MSNBC". Looking at their list, the only live TV apps that support Alexa integration are Playstation Vue and Hulu with Live TV.


So i have Hulu live and a recast I need to see if it will tune to my antenna instead of Hulu but I can tell you with the cube tv the Alexa is flawless and you don’t even need a remote for a lot of things ! We love it!


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post #425 of 623 Old 04-17-2019, 06:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncted View Post
8TB 2.5" Drive? If they are as reliable as the 5TB 2.5" drives, I wouldn't put them in a product I have to support. I suspect it is a combination of supportability, what can be had at volume prices, and what they think people will pay for their product. Putting a 8TB drive in it would probably make the price such that not many people would be willing to buy it.
I agree with you; I was thinking of a 3.5" drive. From the tear-down photos, it appears that a 3.5 drive would fit; although I can't tell if the power supply is sufficient. Ordinarily, I would go with Hitichi, but they seem to be part of Western Digital now. So perhaps the Western Digital Purple Surveillance disk: WD81PURZ

The 1TB disk in the Recast is a Western Digital WD10JUCT (5VDC 0.55Amps). So the Recast may not have a 12VDC bus available for a Purple or other 3.5" disks. But I could run a separate 12VDC line to an internal 3.5" disk.


Thanks,

Scott
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post #426 of 623 Old 04-18-2019, 07:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 645824 View Post
I agree with you; I was thinking of a 3.5" drive. From the tear-down photos, it appears that a 3.5 drive would fit; although I can't tell if the power supply is sufficient. Ordinarily, I would go with Hitichi, but they seem to be part of Western Digital now. So perhaps the Western Digital Purple Surveillance disk: WD81PURZ

I'd recommend Western Digital Black drives. They have a 5 year warranty and have been very reliable for me. I have been running several in a home server, some since 2010. I think the WD Red Pro drives also have a 5 year warranty.
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post #427 of 623 Old 04-18-2019, 02:03 PM
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No need for a 7200 rpm drive in a DVR. That is just going to be more heat. When a 5400 rpm drive will work just as well and run cooler.
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post #428 of 623 Old 04-19-2019, 08:22 AM - Thread Starter
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https://www.cordcuttersnews.com/amaz...to-android-tv/

Looks like Fire TV's will be getting "official" You Tube apps again, as Amazon and Google have began to play nice. As a side note, all Android TV devices will be getting "official" Amazon Prime Video apps.
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post #429 of 623 Old 04-24-2019, 02:03 PM
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Any word about commercial skip, especially now that Tivo is adding automatic commercial skip?

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post #430 of 623 Old 04-26-2019, 07:41 PM
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As of a few days ago, my Recast will no longer show my local ABC channel.
I rescanned on 2 different fire sticks and no ABC channel 2.
My tv tuner shows it, as does my HDhomerun tuner. Signal strength and Signal quality is both 95-100.
Both fire sticks and Recast have had no problem with the channel until now.
Any ideas?
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post #431 of 623 Old 04-26-2019, 08:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lend27 View Post
As of a few days ago, my Recast will no longer show my local ABC channel.
I rescanned on 2 different fire sticks and no ABC channel 2.
My tv tuner shows it, as does my HDhomerun tuner. Signal strength and Signal quality is both 95-100.
Both fire sticks and Recast have had no problem with the channel until now.
Any ideas?
Might touch base with the station's engineer (via their website?) and ask about the PSIP data... I had the same issue (twice) with a local here and they quickly corrected it. It was fine on some devices and not on others...

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post #432 of 623 Old 04-27-2019, 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by aaronwt View Post
No need for a 7200 rpm drive in a DVR. That is just going to be more heat. When a 5400 rpm drive will work just as well and run cooler.
Looks like I'll need to do a little detective work. Since the Recast has a 12 volt supply, and seems to have enough current, then a 3.5-inch HDD (which needs 12V) should work without running extra power through the case.

I am liking the Recast better and better, but I must be missing something -- why Amazon isn't already offering a Recast with a big 3.5" disk.

Scott
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post #433 of 623 Old 05-11-2019, 03:25 PM
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I'm surprised how quiet this thread is. I guess most people who buy Recasts don't frequent forums or, maybe, the Recast has generated zero enthusiasm?

I've had one of the 1T units for a couple months now and have to admit I am not excited. It just sits there streaming and recording broadcast television. Yawn. I was not thrilled that initial configuration required an IOS or Android device, but I guess that is how things work these days at the low end of consumer electronics. The fact that the Recast only supports two streams combined with Amazon's one Recast per account limitation really disappoints. Hopefully, Amazon will lift the restriction down the road. For OTA first cord cutters, I would think that the Tablo TV DVR or a TiVo would be a better choice.

OTT first cord cutters, on the other hand might be quite tickled by this humble DVR. Philo and Vue integrate into the Live Channels Guide. For $20/month, you can add three streams of 'cable channels'. For $50/month, you can add five streams of 'cable channels' plus cable news channels and cable sports channels. The Recast adds all your local channels. If you happen to be a Prime subscriber, you can add premium channels via Prime Channels.

If you happen to be otherwise invested in the Amazon Ecosystem, the Recast can stream to Echo Show devices. That is why I bought the Recast. I have seven Shows and now I can watch television on any one of them. Works much better than Plex via Firefox -- for the OTA stuff, anyway.

I first played with the Recast using a gen 1 Fire TV Stick on the TV that sits on my refrigerator. It's a good place to study WAF since everyone uses that TV at one time or another. It's amazing how slow the gen 1 sticks are. I quickly replaced the gen 1 stick with a current gen 4k FTV Stick. That TV has a TiVo in one HDMI port and has not been off the FTV Stick since I upgraded to 4K. My kids love the home screen with favorites, Netflix, and Prime. Philo was a huge hit. Vue even more so except it kind of jumped into the Vue menu a lot.

The Recast is wired and the Sticks and my router are AC. Streaming is flawless throughout my home (I've purchased four more 4K Sticks since). I have a 60″ plasma television in my living room. It’s on an interior wall which is not near ethernet or cable/antenna. I had a TiVo Mini attached to the television. The Mini does not support wireless, so I used powerline adapters to connect my Mini to my router. The Mini was $130 and the pair of powerline adapters cost $100. I replaced both with a 4K Fire TV Stick which cost $29.99. And works better.

I feel like the Recast, paired with current sticks and Prime could be a very satisfying and inexpensive alternative to a premium provider.
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post #434 of 623 Old 05-11-2019, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by wizwor View Post
I'm surprised how quiet this thread is. I guess most people who buy Recasts don't frequent forums or, maybe, the Recast has generated zero enthusiasm?

I've had one of the 1T units for a couple months now and have to admit I am not excited. It just sits there streaming and recording broadcast television. Yawn. I was not thrilled that initial configuration required an IOS or Android device, but I guess that is how things work these days at the low end of consumer electronics. The fact that the Recast only supports two streams combined with Amazon's one Recast per account limitation really disappoints. Hopefully, Amazon will lift the restriction down the road. For OTA first cord cutters, I would think that the Tablo TV DVR or a TiVo would be a better choice.

OTT first cord cutters, on the other hand might be quite tickled by this humble DVR. Philo and Vue integrate into the Live Channels Guide. For $20/month, you can add three streams of 'cable channels'. For $50/month, you can add five streams of 'cable channels' plus cable news channels and cable sports channels. The Recast adds all your local channels. If you happen to be a Prime subscriber, you can add premium channels via Prime Channels.

If you happen to be otherwise invested in the Amazon Ecosystem, the Recast can stream to Echo Show devices. That is why I bought the Recast. I have seven Shows and now I can watch television on any one of them. Works much better than Plex via Firefox -- for the OTA stuff, anyway.

I first played with the Recast using a gen 1 Fire TV Stick on the TV that sits on my refrigerator. It's a good place to study WAF since everyone uses that TV at one time or another. It's amazing how slow the gen 1 sticks are. I quickly replaced the gen 1 stick with a current gen 4k FTV Stick. That TV has a TiVo in one HDMI port and has not been off the FTV Stick since I upgraded to 4K. My kids love the home screen with favorites, Netflix, and Prime. Philo was a huge hit. Vue even more so except it kind of jumped into the Vue menu a lot.

The Recast is wired and the Sticks and my router are AC. Streaming is flawless throughout my home (I've purchased four more 4K Sticks since). I have a 60″ plasma television in my living room. It’s on an interior wall which is not near ethernet or cable/antenna. I had a TiVo Mini attached to the television. The Mini does not support wireless, so I used powerline adapters to connect my Mini to my router. The Mini was $130 and the pair of powerline adapters cost $100. I replaced both with a 4K Fire TV Stick which cost $29.99. And works better.

I feel like the Recast, paired with current sticks and Prime could be a very satisfying and inexpensive alternative to a premium provider.

Very nice summary. You didn't to mention that the Recast is only 720p and downsamples everything to that. The competing products that you mention handle things better.

For me, that's what's keeping me on the fence. I guess i'm waiting for the Recast+ 8TB 1080p 4K 4-tuner version.

Thanks,

Scott
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post #435 of 623 Old 05-11-2019, 04:22 PM
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Very nice summary. You didn't to mention that the Recast is only 720p and downsamples everything to that. The competing products that you mention handle things better.

For me, that's what's keeping me on the fence. I guess i'm waiting for the Recast+ 8TB 1080p 4K 4-tuner version.

Thanks,

Scott
Thank you, and you are correct, but OTA is 720p or 1080i or less and, IMHO, it looks fine. I have a Tablo TV DVR and a TiVo. The Recast looks better than the Tablo TV DVR. TiVo looks about the same. Of course, that depends what you are watching. I would not delay due to the 720p limitation.

When I get some time, I will more carefully compare the image quality across the various devices on different resolution televisions.
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post #436 of 623 Old 05-12-2019, 06:24 AM
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I haven't cut the cord yet, but since my cable DVR only has two tuners, I use the Recast as a supplement to catch the things I watch OTA while the DVR gets cable broadcasts the Recast doesn't have access to. Last night, my DVR died, and since I can't make it to the cable company to exchange until Tuesday, the Recast is going to be a lifesaver catching all OTA broadcasts that I wanted to record for the next couple of days. A real lifesaver to keep me from having to watch those network shows On Demand.
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post #437 of 623 Old 05-13-2019, 10:33 AM
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For several weeks I had an annoying problem with the Recast and my 4K Fire Stick. Skipping ahead in a recording would intermittently cause 2 problems -when coming out of the skip, audio would not start up again and the video would start losing frames, making the picture look jerky. This usually could be fixed by rewinding, but sometimes that didn't work and I would have to completely back out of the recording and resume it. But last night even backing out and resuming wouldn't fix the problem, so I restarted the Recast - still didn't work. Then I restarted the 4K Fire Stick and that fixed the problem.



I know from a lot of computer experience that most problems can be fixed by rebooting. As the Recast and the Fire Stick are basically computers, they also benefit from the occasional reboot. I'd recommend restarting both Recast and Fire Stick weekly.
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post #438 of 623 Old 05-13-2019, 01:50 PM
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You didn't to mention that the Recast is only 720p and downsamples everything to that.
That and it doesn't have (commercial) autoskip. Not to mention it (4 tuner Recast/4K Fire TV) costs roughly 50% more than the TiVo I'm using. Now I have a 4K Fire TV I got for free (never unboxed) and my locals are of so low quality I would give it some consideration should the TiVo puke at some point in time. Although the autoskip (itself) would be worth a few hundred...

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post #439 of 623 Old 05-13-2019, 03:24 PM
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That and it doesn't have (commercial) autoskip. Not to mention it (4 tuner Recast/4K Fire TV) costs roughly 50% more than the TiVo I'm using. Now I have a 4K Fire TV I got for free (never unboxed) and my locals are of so low quality I would give it some consideration should the TiVo puke at some point in time. Although the autoskip (itself) would be worth a few hundred...
As far as I know the least expensive Roamio/OTA was $200. You cannot buy a TiVo for twice that with Lifetime at this time. You have a much better chance of replicating my $229 1T Recast and $29.99 4k FTV. That would be 30% more and I bet you did not get a 1T disk with your discounted TiVo. I added four more sets to my Recast for $120 ($29.99 per 4k FTV stick). Your TiVo would require $720 worth of Minis. Plus additional hardware if you need wireless (FTV Sticks are AC). Not sure why your locals are so low quality on the FTV Stick, but 720P looks pretty good to me via the Recast.

I own five Roamio/OTAs and a pair of Minis. I like them a lot. I like the Recast + FTV Stick better.
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post #440 of 623 Old 05-13-2019, 05:53 PM
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As far as I know the least expensive Roamio/OTA was $200.
Yep - picked up a few along the way (mostly sold them off) For me image quality and autoskip trumps any other (possible) feature(s) or cost difference.

Quote:
Your TiVo would require $720 worth of Minis. Plus additional hardware if you need wireless (FTV Sticks are AC).
I would never purchase a lot of hardware I would never use. Although isn't TIVo shipping apps for the various streamers...

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I like the Recast + FTV Stick better.
I don't based on features and I'd guess the TIVo would have to be over a grand more before I would begin to consider it...

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post #441 of 623 Old 05-14-2019, 12:06 AM
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Yep - picked up a few along the way (mostly sold them off) For me image quality and autoskip trumps any other (possible) feature(s) or cost difference.
I bought three at $299.99 and two more at $199.99. Also have a pair of Minis. Both the Minis were attached with Powerline adapters and suffered routine 'not connected' errors which required a reboot of host and client. Much happier with sticks (powered by TV USB). It may be my aging eyes, but I do not see a difference in the picture quality.

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I would never purchase a lot of hardware I would never use. Although isn't TIVo shipping apps for the various streamers...
Of course. You led with a price comparison and I was simply extending it for you. I do not think the apps will be available until summer/fall (CES announcement).


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I don't based on features and I'd guess the TIVo would have to be over a grand more before I would begin to consider it...
Most of my life, a TiVo with Lifetime has run $850. Even now a Bolt/OTA with All In is $500 -- $150 more than I paid for the Recast and five Sticks. As for features, the big one for me is the ability to stream live TV to my Echo Shows EASILY and RELIABLY. I could do it using Plex via Firefox, but this is, well, easier and more reliable ;-)

The other feature I like is integration of OTA and OTT in a single guide...



I think I could be totally satisfied with Recast (OTA) + Vue Core + HBO (Prime Channel) + Plex. That would cost me $125 per month (including high speed internet and Prime) and surpass any Cable package I have ever had. Since Prime channels can be added and removed at will, you could do HBO one month and Starz or Cinemax the next.

I understand your enthusiasm for TiVo, but if we talk about stuff other than the Recast on this forum, the AVS mods will get cranky. Nite!
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post #442 of 623 Old 05-14-2019, 07:38 AM
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Also have a pair of Minis.
Never fond of the Minis and luckily I never had a use for them. If I did I would have used a (traditional) TiVo instead.

Quote:
I do not think the apps will be available until summer/fall (CES announcement).
To a large extend if/when they ship it will remove their biggest drawback. Although more than likely the image quality will be a compromise just like the others.

Quote:
As for features, the big one for me is the ability to stream live TV to my Echo Shows EASILY and RELIABLY.
I looked at the Show and found it missing a lot of features I wanted - even the free Echos I have go unused. Regarding TV I don't view TV casually (65" OLED or fire up the projector on a rare occasion) so they would be of no benefit.

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The other feature I like is integration of OTA and OTT in a single guide...
I virtually never use a guide. TiVo/TiVo to view my recordings and play. I have zero interest in free or paid streaming services. There are only so many hours I'm willing to "dedicate" to viewing.

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I understand your enthusiasm for TiVo, but if we talk about stuff other than the Recast on this forum, the AVS mods will get cranky.
I simply find it the current solution. I have used WMC, DVBLink and various vendor provided DVRs for years and they each have their own calling. I tried to migrate to the Recast and based on its features (or lack of) I wasn't able... perhaps down the road.

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post #443 of 623 Old 05-14-2019, 08:07 AM
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I hope to try TABLO vs RECAST comparison soon.
Recently I've been testing TABLO vs SLING+AIRTV and Tablo seems to have easily won despite awesome Sling OTA GUI integration.

Some 720p-only solutions could work for our sports viewing, but I understand that Recast by design does not transcode properly enough like a Tablo or HD-homerun with transcoding, for 1080i source material.

Maybe Alexa Recast can be useful for us even if it doesn't render 1080i material nicely... I will buy the 2-tuner as soon as is available refurbed at lower cost maybe with a double-secret double-prime discount. (Does Whole Foods have a day-old-produce section or a refurbed Alexa Recast section yet?)

Advice & ideas are appreciated. Thank you!
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post #444 of 623 Old 05-14-2019, 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by tveli View Post
I hope to try TABLO vs RECAST comparison soon.
Recently I've been testing TABLO vs SLING+AIRTV and Tablo seems to have easily won despite awesome Sling OTA GUI integration.
I have just acquired a Tablo TV DVR. It's on my network and antenna, but I haven't gotten around to playing beyond initial configuration.

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Originally Posted by tveli View Post
Some 720p-only solutions could work for our sports viewing, but I understand that Recast by design does not transcode properly enough like a Tablo or HD-homerun with transcoding, for 1080i source material.
Not sure what is correct, but this is from the FAQ...
Quote:
What output resolution does Fire TV Recast support?

Fire TV Recast is capable of receiving all ATSC broadcast resolutions, including 1080i and 720p. When streaming to other devices, Fire TV Recast transcodes 1080i streams to a resolution up to 1440x720p using H.264. This is to ensure that all Fire TV streaming media players work with Fire TV Recast, and to deliver more reliable video streams over Wi-Fi.
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Originally Posted by tveli View Post
Maybe Alexa Recast can be useful for us even if it doesn't render 1080i material nicely... I will buy the 2-tuner as soon as is available refurbed at lower cost maybe with a double-secret double-prime discount. (Does Whole Foods have a day-old-produce section or a refurbed Alexa Recast section yet?)
I paid $229.99 for my 4 tuner 1T Recast minus 5% for using my Prime card. So $218.50 if my public school math is correct. Does that count as an Amazon double-secret double-prime discount?

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Originally Posted by tveli View Post
Advice & ideas are appreciated. Thank you!
If you have not visited my blog, please read this and look for a review of the Tablo TV DVR. I will probably compare head to head in a third post.

You can see from the posts here that everyone has different priorities and wants. It would help if you could define yours. Also, I am interested in Sling and Air TV and would appreciate hearing about your experience with it. You can PM me so the mods don't get agitated.
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post #445 of 623 Old 05-14-2019, 01:43 PM
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thanks wiz. I'll take a look at your blog and will PM/email/smoke-signal you accordingly with observations & queries & agita.
It is certain that I will try recast soon due to a recurring case of early-adoptitis.

If the vid quality from Recast is insufficient for NFL and visibly worse than unmolested 1080i, then maybe the recast will be spousally approved for its many other Alexan conveniences!
Seems the price is not low enough for me today.
I've seen Amazon discount Recast to $179 so will await the next "secret sale" whether single or double.
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post #446 of 623 Old 05-14-2019, 03:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tveli View Post
thanks wiz. I'll take a look at your blog and will PM/email/smoke-signal you accordingly with observations & queries & agita.
It is certain that I will try recast soon due to a recurring case of early-adoptitis.

If the vid quality from Recast is insufficient for NFL and visibly worse than unmolested 1080i, then maybe the recast will be spousally approved for its many other Alexan conveniences!
Seems the price is not low enough for me today.
I've seen Amazon discount Recast to $179 so will await the next "secret sale" whether single or double.
If the NHL game is OTA tonight, I'll take a look. Hockey is a great test of motion issues. If not, I'll try to catch highlights on the news. I'll post back here.
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Last edited by wizwor; 05-14-2019 at 04:18 PM.
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post #447 of 623 Old 05-18-2019, 03:36 PM - Thread Starter
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How does the recast work with Fire TV when there is a 4-5 hour internet outage? I use HDHomerun network tuner in our home, as well as a Plex Server, and have 2 Nvidia Shields and 2 Fire TV’s currently. We have had a horrible week with Xfinity internet out for 4-5 hours on three days. On the Shields, we can still watch OTA, and Plex with intermittent internet issues, but the Fire TV’s are totally dead, stating that Home is unavailable, with neither the HDHomerun or Plex apps even appearing.

Does this happen to Fire TV’s that are connected to Recast? Can you view recorded videos, and OTA when the internet goes down but the home network is still up? Is Plex and other apps/games available?

The users of the Fire TV’s here might be willing to purchase a recast if this is workable without “rooting” their units after suffering without any media while us Nvidia users were at least able to fall back on OTA, and our Plex library. Honestly, I was surprised that since Fire TV is based off of Android, that it was so much more limited than Android TV.
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post #448 of 623 Old 05-18-2019, 05:54 PM
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AFTVnews had an article about this and yes, the Recast can still be used while temporarily offline. During an internet outage, the DVR tab is still available and you can watch live TV and previously recorded shows.

The Home tab still shows Home is unavailable, so no apps are displayed. But reading the article again, it stated that apps can be launched from Settings, so I wonder if that would work. It's a little convoluted though. You have to go to Settings, Applications, Manage Installed Applications, select the application name, and then select Launch Application.

http://www.aftvnews.com/amazon-fire-...et-connection/
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post #449 of 623 Old 05-19-2019, 11:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mshaver76 View Post
AFTVnews had an article about this and yes, the Recast can still be used while temporarily offline. During an internet outage, the DVR tab is still available and you can watch live TV and previously recorded shows.

The Home tab still shows Home is unavailable, so no apps are displayed. But reading the article again, it stated that apps can be launched from Settings, so I wonder if that would work. It's a little convoluted though. You have to go to Settings, Applications, Manage Installed Applications, select the application name, and then select Launch Application.

http://www.aftvnews.com/amazon-fire-...et-connection/
Thank you so much. That will sure help them decide. Turns out we may be having intermittent outtages over next 2 months , and you wouldn't believe how quickly young people get frustrated when there is absolutely nothing on the tv.
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post #450 of 623 Old 05-19-2019, 01:10 PM
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You're welcome.
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