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Anyone with an Aspect Switcher and a TiVo?

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by TeresaTT, Apr 19, 2005.

  1. TeresaTT

    TeresaTT
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    I've got Telewest cable fed into TiVo which is hooked up to the VGA input on my PWD6 via a JS Tech RGB to VGA converter.

    I've finally got so fed up with manualy changing aspect on my PWD6 when watching my TiVo that I've decided to splash out and buy the PARC209 aspect switcher.

    I know that the switcher will continue to switch aspect even if I'm watching a DVD from the component input on my PWD6. What I would like to know is if I put TiVo into standby will that ensure that no switching signal is sent to the plasma while watching my component input.

    I know that I've still got a problem if someone else uses my digisender to watch TiVo in another room, but that doesn't happen very often and I can live with it.

    Thanks
     
  2. stevelup

    stevelup
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    Hi

    I can confirm that the TiVo does not output the Pin 8 switching signals when it is in Standby.

    Regards,

    Steve
     
  3. TeresaTT

    TeresaTT
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    That's brillant. Thank you very much for the info Steve. I'm off to AV Sales with my credit card.

    Teresa
     
  4. TeresaTT

    TeresaTT
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    Ordered it yesterday morning and it came this morning. That's pretty good service. I haven't even had time to get me a proper scart cable. I've had to hunt around for any old one I could find. However, I've connected it all up and I'm in auto switching heaven. It's just a pity that TiVo's aspect switch signal is delayed by a few seconds but at least I don't have to keep telling my son or my husband that the programme they're watching is wide or 4:3. :) Oh, and another thing, I've run out of power sockets.
     
  5. vixricks

    vixricks
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    I was interested to see you have TiVo and Telewest, as I'm considering getting TiVo myself. I love the fact it will record things it thinks I will like for me, and this is why I'd prefer it to Sky +. Do you know any other packages that will do it though? How are you getting on with your TiVo and Telewest service? Are there any limitations?

    Thanks!
     
  6. TeresaTT

    TeresaTT
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    TiVo works very well with Telewest and is very reliable. It misses very few recordings and has never ever lost a recording off the hard drive. The biggest problems I've had have been when I've gone on holiday for a couple of weeks and the Telewest box has locked up halfway through or something. TiVo has happily tried to change channel and gone on to record nothing.

    Depending on the Telewest box that you have you may need an IR dongle as the Telewest boxes use IrDa instead of the more conventional IR. This will transmit the correct IrDA remote codes to the Telewest box.

    TiVo's 'Suggestions' feature is very useful. It mostly picks up programmes that we like and sometimes we find something there that we wanted to see but would have otherwise missed. The single most useful feature is the Season Pass. Unlike Sky+, once you set up a season pass to record all episodes of a series it stays there forever or until you delete it. This means that you don't miss the return of subsequent series. Another useful feature is the Wishlist. You can select a programme to record by title, actor etc and it selects matching programmes across all channels.

    If you know your way around computers, you can set up a serial link to a PC or even install a network card. Then you can access all the TiVo features from your PC and even add extra functionality as I have done. The most useful is soft padding which will start a recording earlier and stop it later by a configuarble number of minutes, unless the extra minutes would clash with another recording. The normal TiVo padding is hard padding which would prevent a following programme from recording. You can even set programmes to record on TiVo from Digiguide. It is also possible to get recordings off the TiVo onto your PC.

    As a PVR, there is currently nothing out there as good as TiVo in terms of user functionality and reliability. The only advantage that Freeview PVRs and Sky+ have is dual tuners. The closest in terms of functionality is Windows XP Media Centre, but that is expensive to set up and not completely reliable, but there are people who have got it working with Telewest.

    One big differnce between Sky+ and TiVo is that Sky+ records the encoded digital stream directly and will play it back with no loss of quality. Whereas TiVo can only record the analogue picture and so has to encode it first. This results in a slight loss of picture quality, but it is still a quite acceptable picture. The slight loss in picture quality is far exceeded by the benefits of being able to watch what I want, when I want.

    I love my TiVo and it has completely freed me from programme schedules. I rarely watch live TV as there is always a list of my favourite programmes waiting for me to watch. As it is so easy to access recorded programmes and skip through adverts, I actualy watch more TV in less time.

    The only feature that I really wish for is dual tuners. A lot of my viewing is at prime time and often there are clashes. TiVo has a priority list for Season Passes that can be managed, and will automatically pick up repeats of clashing programmes. However, you have to check through manually to make sure that all clashes are resolved in the way that you want them and it can take me a while sometimes to sort it all out.

    Telewest are actually planning to provide their own PVR with THREE tuners that is HD ready. The current availability date is end of this year, but I'd allow for substantial slippage on that. Also, I just have no confidence at all that the software will be anywhere near as good as that on the TiVo. Telewest will sell their PVR on the basis of a very good hardware spec, which is better than Sky+. I bet their software will be very basic and be little more than a VCR with an EPG.

    You'll get lots more information at the TiVo forums on www.tivocommunity.com in the TiVo UK forum.

    Teresa
     
  7. MAW

    MAW
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    There's a typical Tivo owner, Vixricks. They all talk like that, they can't all be wrong. Such a shame the sales apect of things went so wrong in UK I've got a number of tivo owning clients, as it's the only viable device for cable TV customers. 2nd hand Tivos are widely available, and reasonably priced. They also hold their value, so you could just take a punt and buy one, knowing you can sell it on easily.
     
  8. vixricks

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    Thanks for your replies, it's good to know TiVo's as good as I'd hoped!

    I've seen, I think on a UK website, that they refer to a series 1 and series 2 Scenium box. Do you know the difference? Is one better than the other, or not much between it? Or is one for the US? Can the hard disk be easily upgraded, and is it a normal computer hard disk - plug and play, or something special?

    I'm at that final position of seeing a number on eBay and not really knowing where to start...any advice appreciated!
     
  9. stevelup

    stevelup
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    Hi

    You can only get series 1 boxes in the UK so you have no choice.

    Upgrading them is fairly trivial if you are comfortable with general PC maintainance.

    Visit TiVo Community UK - quite possibly the most friendly and helpful forum in the whole internet.

    Steve
     
  10. stevelup

    stevelup
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    One other thing - I'd recommend paying over the odds for one which has already been modified.

    It's a few hours work and big hard disks are as cheap as chips at the moment.

    I'd recommend the Samsung Spinpoint drives as they are completely silent and run very cool.

    You can buy preconfigured drives ready to go (simply take the old disk out and put the new one in) from Pacelink. I believe they start from £99 and include the Torx screwdriver you need :)

    Steve
     

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