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UTV -- TiVo -- Replay TV?

447 Views 4 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  RedNecker
I am completely new to this DVR stuff.

I am starting to understand some of the language & features.

Since UTV is pretty well off the new purchase list that leaves TiVo & ReplayTV.

There are many posts here about the pros & cons of switching to TiVo, but none about switching to RePlayTV.

Is ReplayTV completely out of the question?

I thought it had better features than TiVo.

I have DirecTV & Charter Cable at the present time with no HD signals yet for myHDTV. They both give great PQ on most channels. I have Basic Charter Cable because of the high speed Internet connection.

Should I just wait a few months & see what HD DVRs come on the market?
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There are two primary types of DVRs...

1. Tuner intergrated w DVR: DirecTivo and UTV (as well as the Dish PVR's) record the digital stream directly. The playback quality of the recorded show is the same as the original viewing of the program. Most of these units also have dual tuner setups so you can record two programs at once. The monthly fee for the dvr service is usually subsidized so it is cheaper than the stand-alone option.

2. Stand-alone DVR: The stand alone Tivo, ReplayTV, Media Center PC, etc. all take an analog audio/video source convert it to digital and compress it before storing it on the harddrive. You loose information during this processing... so there is a drop in quality when using the stand-alone units. Also when you use these units with digital cable, or sat systems it has to change channels on an external box which is a bit more of a hassle to setup and it isn't quite as reliable or easy as the all-in-one-systems. However you can use these boxes with any type of service so their flexibility is unmatched.

If you are a directv subscriber I highly recommend the directivo box. If charter has their own dvr I highly recommend that unit... but if you want a dvr that will work with both systems than about your only option is going to be the stand-alone Tivo or Replay systems.

As far as Replay vs Tivo... they both have very similar features and pricing. The biggest issue w replay is whether or not the service is going to be around in a year. The service has shifted hands for the 3rd time in 3 years and I'd be a little leary of it's long-term viability. The original replay box had a commercial skip feature which was great for users but didn't go over too well w advertising firms and broadcasters. Whoever has been running the Replay service has been sued into the ground... this feature has finally been removed from the latest generation of these boxes, so we'll see how replay fares moving forward.
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Thanks for the update.

I don't think Charter supports any DVR, but they have a much better PQ than DirecTV on most analog channels.

I keep hoping one of them will get a decent selection of HD signals from somewhere. We have none available OTA.

Originally posted by RedNecker
...they have a much better PQ than DirecTV on most analog channels.Red
Are you using the S-video outputs from your DirecTV to your monitor? The fully digital DirecTV signal picture should be at least as good as a high quality DVD picture.

Do you have premium choice with your DirecTV now? If you do there should be no additional charge for DirecTiVo. Only $4.99/mo. for the extra receiver fee.

If you don't have premium choice it will be $4.99/mo for DirecTivo in addition. If you're planning on HDTiVo once it arrives, then there probably won't be any extra TiVo charges, only extra for the HD packages you want. If you already have the HD stuff from DirecTV then there should be only the additional receiver fee.

In other words, get DirecTiVo now, get HDTiVo in a few months.

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Yes, I am using S-Video from DirecTV Sony rcvr.

I am using Composite from a Sony VCR on with Charter & Charter still gives better PQ on a Panny 42PHD6UY plasma.

I have no plans at this time to TiVo or HD from DirecTV since the HD choices are so limited.

I will not get a HD recorder at the prices now stated as over $500.

Charter is supposed to add an HD rcvr box with PVR & several HD channels in the near future.

Which ever comes first.

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