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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I want to be able to:


1)receive our 4 local OTA HD channels and record them to a TIVO unit when I need to time-shift

2)record from the DirectTV satellites using either TIVO or DirecTivo


I understand I will need 2 separate units and that the TIVO units cannot record HD. The Zenith looks like it will be the best HD STB (when it comes out). I could also use the Toshiba DST3000 as I have a Toshiba HD-ready 65". Both will tune DirectTV and OTA HD. If I want to use them with TIVO, does one present an advantage over the other?


Should I get a SA TIVO or a combo unit, considering I want to use it with one of the above STBs? If I get the TIVO combo unit because it has 2 tuners, will these 2 tuners help me considering the Zenith and the Toshiba also have tuner(s)?


If I get one of the HD STBs and a TIVO combo unit, will I have to pay DirectTV 2 monthly fees or a mirroring fee, or is it possible to pass the complete satellite signal from the HD STB to the TIVO combo unit? Or should I just use the HD STB to get OTA HD exclusively? If I do, am I correct in understanding that I cannot use the TIVO combo?


Sorry but this is all a bit confusing to me. Thanks for any help you guys can give me.


David
 

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The big issue is that the DirecTivo combo records from DirecTV only, and not from any external source whatsoever. To record local channels you have to get a standalone, or use a VCR. For recording from satellite DirecTivo has a lot of advantages; you get simultaneous recording of 2 channels, digital audio, space-efficient highest quality recording. If you watch mostly satellite, and get your locals via satellite I'd go that route. But if you don't get all the locals you need via DirecTV then a standalone is better. Using a HD/DirecTV receiver in combo with a standalone is troublesome though; for most you need to continually remember to switch between HD and non-HD mode, since the outputs are not active simultaneously, and the Tivo software doesn't know how to operate this switch. You can end up with recordings of no signal. Furthermore for the OTA stuff you more or less have to do everything manually, setting timers on the HD box as well, as the Tivo generally can't tune to the digital OTA stations.


Overall I think it's better to do either:

(1) Get a cheap DirecTV reciever to use as a slave for a standalone, record locals analog off of the antenna, occasionally rewire to record from digital OTA.

(2) Get DirecTivo, subscribe to local channels via DirecTV.


If you wait 6 months you might be able to get a box that can do everything, a PVR that does both satellite and digital OTA. There are computer cards now that will record digital OTA, but not the satellite.


You have to pay a mirroring fee on top of the standard monthly fee for each DirecTV receiver you own, starting with the second one. A direcTivo counts as 1 DirecTV receiver even though you can use it to tune 2 channels at once. You also have to pay a monthly fee to Tivo to get full use of the software (severely crippled without it), or a one time "lifetime" charge for the life of the unit.
 

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David, I have a Sony SAT-T60 DirecTiVo and a Mitsubishi SR-HD5 HD/DirecTV receiver. The functionality of these two boxes cannot be combined. You either watch a program in HD live, or you record the program in Standard Definition on your TiVo. I would not bother with a standard DirecTV receiver and a stand-alone TiVo, because the DirecTiVo is so much better and easier to use.


Additional DirecTV receivers each cost $5.00/month extra.


In San Diego, you can record local channels (6,7,8,10) on your DirecTiVo if you add DirecTV local channels, but you will have to use a 24" elliptical dish to receive local channels, since they're on the 119 sat for us. But you will need this dish for HD anyway, since the HDNet (199) and HBO-HD (509) are on the 119 sat also. Local channels costs an additional $4.95/month.


From your location, you should also be able to easily receive OTA digital signals from KFMB and KGTV, since their transmitters are on Mt. Soledad. From my location in Rancho Penasquitos, I also receive XETV and KSWB from Mt. San Miguel, near Spring Valley. KNSD is also located on Mt. San Miguel, but they are currently broadcasting at only 18kW, so their signal is almost impossible to receive except in that immediate area. KPBS is scheduled to start broadcasting in October.


I have a ChannelMaster 3021 antenna mounted in my attic on a rotator and I can also easily receive all of the major LA stations, including KCET (PBS).


If you want to come over and see my setup, e-mail me.


------------------

Tom


Sony SAT-T60 DirecTc>ic>Vc>oc>f> w/2.5 (126 hours)

Sony SAT-T60 DirecTc>ic>Vc>oc>f> w/2.5

Sony SAN-24MD 24" elliptical dish

Mitsubishi SR-HD5 HD/DirecTV receiver


[This message has been edited by TomF (edited 09-24-2001).]
 

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One neat trick is to get a DirecTV receiver that always outputs 480i as well as 1080i. Set it to output unsqueezed (vertically stretched 480i.) Record this vertically stretched picture on your stand-alone TiVo at best quality. Now when you play it back, you can do the squeeze on your set. The result is supposedly a lot better than recording the SD channel with any kind of TiVo.


If you're primarily interested in recording your local OTA HD stations, then get a HiPix or accessDTV card for about $380. These will allow you to record OTA HD to your PC's hard drive. I use two 60 GB drives in a RAID-0 for 13 hours of recording time. There is no way to record DirecTV HD in this manner, and recording Dish requires spending big bucks on rare equipment.



------------------

Abdul
Philips 60PP9601, join the Philips_HDTV discussion group

Dish 5000 + HDTV Modulator, DirecTV + 128 hour SVR-2000 TiVo

HTPC: Duron 750, K7 Master, Radeon LE, AccessDTV, Cybermail, Audiophile
It's not HD. It's HBO.
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