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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am looking at "cutting the cable". In my investagation of how to do this, I will probably have to have a HTPC in my home theater. It will have to:

1. Act as a OTA tuner

2. Record and playback OTA programs

3. VoIP server using something like a MagicJack


The hitch is how easy it will be to perform the first two tasks. My wife is for a lack of a better word technologicly channaged. That is the reason I purchase a Logitech Harmony remote. One button to watch TV. Another to listen to CDs etc.


Can a HTPC be set up with a Harmony remote to perform the first task?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dschlic1 /forum/post/20808323


I am looking at "cutting the cable". In my investagation of how to do this, I will probably have to have a HTPC in my home theater. It will have to:

1. Act as a OTA tuner

2. Record and playback OTA programs

3. VoIP server using something like a MagicJack


The hitch is how easy it will be to perform the first two tasks. My wife is for a lack of a better word technologicly channaged. That is the reason I purchase a Logitech Harmony remote. One button to watch TV. Another to listen to CDs etc.


Can a HTPC be set up with a Harmony remote to perform the first task?

The OTA recording and playback functionality in WMC7 is very good - better than the Dish Network DTV-Pal I had earlier because you can record by title, not just time slot. I am using an Avermedia duet card with no issues. The Harmony One works quite well with WMC. I have tried two different IR receivers and both work fine.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dschlic1 /forum/post/20808323


I am looking at "cutting the cable". In my investagation of how to do this, I will probably have to have a HTPC in my home theater. It will have to:

1. Act as a OTA tuner

2. Record and playback OTA programs

3. VoIP server using something like a MagicJack


The hitch is how easy it will be to perform the first two tasks. My wife is for a lack of a better word technologicly channaged. That is the reason I purchase a Logitech Harmony remote. One button to watch TV. Another to listen to CDs etc.


Can a HTPC be set up with a Harmony remote to perform the first task?

You'll need to get a cheap media center remote to get the IR receiver. The Harmony doesn't come with one. We have the Harmony One and it works very well with DirecTV DVR and Media Center PC.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by terryj47 /forum/post/20811377


You'll need to get a cheap media center remote to get the IR receiver. The Harmony doesn't come with one. We have the Harmony One and it works very well with DirecTV DVR and Media Center PC.

+1


You can get the MCE Remote receiver on ebay for cheap. I use my harmony with it to control my HTPC.


BT
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dschlic1
I am looking at "cutting the cable". In my investagation of how to do this, I will probably have to have a HTPC in my home theater. It will have to:

1. Act as a OTA tuner

2. Record and playback OTA programs

3. VoIP server using something like a MagicJack


The hitch is how easy it will be to perform the first two tasks. My wife is for a lack of a better word technologicly channaged. That is the reason I purchase a Logitech Harmony remote. One button to watch TV. Another to listen to CDs etc.


Can a HTPC be set up with a Harmony remote to perform the first task?
Go with OOMA if you need VOIP. There is the initial costs of the device after you buy the box it is like $3.50 a month and it as robust as any consumer VOIP out there. Magic Jack is POS. Woot had the box the other night for like $139. It beats the crap out of Vonage both in terms of quality and of course price. You can save some bucks if you buy your own modem as well. Renting the cable companies modem is a looser in the long run... I assume you are not going DSL.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtgray
Go with OOMA if you need VOIP. There is the initial costs of the device after you buy the box it is like $3.50 a month and it as robust as any consumer VOIP out there. Magic Jack is POS. Woot had the box the other night for like $139. It beats the crap out of Vonage both in terms of quality and of course price. You can save some bucks if you buy your own modem as well. Renting the cable companies modem is a looser in the long run... I assume you are not going DSL.
Skip Ooma and get the Obi100. $40 and no monthly fee.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I am looking into the issue of VoIP. Google Voice might not work because won't have an existing telephone number. Also another issue is incoming calls. I have three or four relatives that are currently using MagicJack. No big problems evident.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj /forum/post/20815443


Skip Ooma and get the Obi100. $40 and no monthly fee.

I have the Obi100 and have used it for several months and almost agree with you but...


1: In spite of many requests from users Google has not fixed the call recording on/off bug which is very irritating to say the least.


2: Per advice from the setup guide from here: http://michigantelephone.wordpress.c...utgoing-calls/


"...You first have to go through the usual drill of setting up a Google Voice account. What you first want to do is get a brand new GMail address – DO NOT use your existing Gmail address that you use for your day-to-day e-mail, especially if you read and compose your e-mail online from with your web browser (in other words, the way most people use Gmail), because being logged into Gmail can potentially cause you to miss Google Voice calls on the same account..."


I setup a separate gmail account for voice calls only. This works for in and outbound calls, but curiously Google setup will not allow allow recorded voicemail to be forwarded to my Gmail email account which is my main communication portal. It's not a showstopper but is inconvenient to have to log in to the voice account to check for voicemail.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dschlic1 /forum/post/20817820


I am looking into the issue of VoIP. Google Voice might not work because won't have an existing telephone number. Also another issue is incoming calls. I have three or four relatives that are currently using MagicJack. No big problems evident.

Not sure what would be different using GV instead of MagicJack. You can port your current number or get a new number. It will make outgoing calls and receive incoming calls all using your standard home phones. What are you thinking is the issue?

Quote:
Originally Posted by elockett /forum/post/20817855


I have the Obi100 and have used it for several months and almost agree with you but...


1: In spite of many requests from users Google has not fixed the call recording on/off bug which is very irritating to say the least.


2: Per advice from the setup guide from here: http://michigantelephone.wordpress.c...utgoing-calls/


"...You first have to go through the usual drill of setting up a Google Voice account. What you first want to do is get a brand new GMail address - DO NOT use your existing Gmail address that you use for your day-to-day e-mail, especially if you read and compose your e-mail online from with your web browser (in other words, the way most people use Gmail), because being logged into Gmail can potentially cause you to miss Google Voice calls on the same account..."


I setup a separate gmail account for voice calls only. This works for in and outbound calls, but curiously Google setup will not allow allow recorded voicemail to be forwarded to my Gmail email account which is my main communication portal. It's not a showstopper but is inconvenient to have to log in to the voice account to check for voicemail.

I have mine set up on its own account and it forwards voicemail emails to my primary email account (and my wife's too). I can just click the link in the email to listen.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj /forum/post/20817879


Not sure what would be different using GV instead of MagicJack. You can port your current number or get a new number. It will make outgoing calls and receive incoming calls all using your standard home phones. What are you thinking is the issue?




I have mine set up on its own account and it forwards voicemail emails to my primary email account (and my wife's too). I can just click the link in the email to listen.

I PM'ed you.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by elockett /forum/post/20817892


I have a question about the Harmony remote and PC control. It is possible to program a Harmony to put a PC to sleep/hibernate instead of powering it down completely?

The answer is yes. That's what it does by default. The issue is: will your PC go into and out of sleep? I gave up. Best I ever got was sporadic reliability (waking from sleep and working).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by terryj47 /forum/post/20818060


The answer is yes. That's what it does by default. The issue is: will your PC go into and out of sleep? I gave up. Best I ever got was sporadic reliability (waking from sleep and working).

That thought (coming out of sleep) occurred to me too. I have a new Harmony One and configured to control 7 WMC (including cable TV via a Ceton) and it works well. However, to this point I've kept the PC on 24/7. Maybe I'll set up a sleep profile and see how it works.
 

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Not to get to bogged down into VOIP.. but for all practical purposes and intents OOMA might as well be a land line..


Foir ne the phone needs to be an appliance I don't want my phone and my PC co -mingled as far as access goes and I don't want to dedicate a PC to be a phone server.


Just the issue of power management and something like Magic Jack gives me the willies. As a backup system maybe but somethings need to be appliances and not subject to virus, patches or the myriad of maintenance issues that PCs have and to me the phone needs to work ith 99.9 percent uptime with no maintenance.


Not to beat the OOMA drum but check out the customer satisfaction scores. I have been on VOIP via Vonage, Comcast and OOMA now for over a year.. OOMA puts those other vendors to shame. The only nice thing about Comcast was their VOIP adapter had a built in UPS and faxing was as robuts as on an anaolog POTS.
 

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I think one could make a compelling argument that if TV was not the central part of your viewing and you wanted highest playback quality, then a streamer like the now defunct HD Sage 300 or similar that does HD audio and will output native frequency and resolution video unmolestet than that coupled with a good scaler either a Radiance or a DUO is the way to see content at its bests. I have Sage HD 300 sitting in a room, not being used. If if it could play Live Cable TV along with its other tricks it would have replaced my HTPC as the center piece of my playback chain.


This gets into the whole Sage saga... but Nirvana is an extender like the Sage HD 300 that plays native content of all kind ands output unmolested video into a top notch scaler. I used to send my Tivo HD content in native rez to my DUO.. But the Ceton put the Tivo out of my rack for cost and number of tuner reasons. But the Ceton output scaled and deinterlaced from the PC can not match the Tivo sending native to the DUO.. you take two steps forward and one or sometimes more backwards. The TIVO was an appliance and had zero futz factor.. it was the 13.50 a month for the EPG that in the long run was not acceptable.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtgray /forum/post/20818579


Not to get to bogged down into VOIP.. but for all practical purposes and intents OOMA might as well be a land line..


Foir ne the phone needs to be an appliance I don't want my phone and my PC co -mingled as far as access goes and I don't want to dedicate a PC to be a phone server.


Just the issue of power management and something like Magic Jack gives me the willies. As a backup system maybe but somethings need to be appliances and not subject to virus, patches or the myriad of maintenance issues that PCs have and to me the phone needs to work ith 99.9 percent uptime with no maintenance.


Not to beat the OOMA drum but check out the customer satisfaction scores. I have been on VOIP via Vonage, Comcast and OOMA now for over a year.. OOMA puts those other vendors to shame. The only nice thing about Comcast was their VOIP adapter had a built in UPS and faxing was as robuts as on an anaolog POTS.

The Obi100 doesn't require a PC either and has no monthly fee when using it along with Google Voice. I've had mine for months and it has been trouble free and reliable. I considered OOMA when I was shopping for VOIP, but the upfront cost and monthly fees turned me off. I'll stick with $40 upfront and $0 per month.


Check out the Obi100 and Obi110 reviews on Amazon.
 

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Good luck. I compromised. PCs are on 24/7 over the weekend and on from about 6 pm to 5 am during the week. The remote would send the right commands to go into and out of sleep but something would screw up frequenctly. Missed recordings too. If I had to guess, I'd bet notebooks do go into and out of sleep just fine but not desktops. Especially "homegrown" as ours are.
 
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