Digital Video Recorder information


Mr. Flibble


I don't know if anything exists that meets my requirments, but I'll list them and would be grateful if somone would point me in the right direction.

I'd like a hard drive recorder that will allow me to
- pause digital tv
- record one channel while waching another
- encode tv to MPEG so it can be recorded to VCD or DVD
- have an ethernet network interface so the recorded shows can be copied to a PC
- allow me to easily set timed record of a tv show, or many shows.

Perhaps also have a built in DVDr.
I haven't a clue about DVRs, do they require a broadband connection for tv listing updates. If they do, is this service available for free?
My TV comes from NTL digital(I live in Ireland).

So does anything like this exist? Are there any web sites/threads that would be useful for me to look at?


You don't want much do you :D

Well the bad news is:
Cable does not have any dedicated PVR's so there is no way of watching one prog whist recording another.
There are AFAIK no PVR's with built in DVD recorder in the UK. There are plenty of DVD writers, but they just have dumb recording and no PVR features.
I don't think that any of the PVR's or dumb HDD recorders will record to MPEG as this would just make it too easy to copy the programs to disk which would cause all sorts of problems with copyright etc.

The good news is:
You can use the best PVR that there is for the rest of your requirements. TiVo is the only PVR to be compatable with cable and will let you pause the TV, can be networked and recording is as easy as highlighting a program from the EPG.
If you know what you are doing you can get the programs onto a PC to copy to DVD - allegedly :devil: , not that we would know anything about that as you would be breaking copyright law :nono: .

The EPG on TiVo is updated via a free phone call or if you have networked TiVo (this is an unofficial optional extra) you can get your updates via broadband. The EPG and software updates are only available with a subscription that costs either £10 per month or a lifetime sub for £200.
Full details on TiVo including upgrades/hacks are available from the TiVo community forum

So you can get close to what you are after, but nothing will do it all - At The Moment!


Mr. Flibble

Thanks very much, very informative reply - the TiVo sounds good. Do you know if the free call number is free from Ireland? Also, what format does the TiVo save video to, if not MPEG?

Also, as I'm in Ireland, I'll have slightly different channels available than the UK. Will the TiVo recieve proper listings?


The TiVo EPG calls are via an 0800 phone number. If these still apply in southern Ireland then yes - but you would know better on this than me.
TiVo should be able to work out your TV package as this information is part of the setup as is entering your post code, so should pick up local variations ok. I am again not sure what areas are covered by TiVo, so another member from Ireland may be of more help here. Otherwise ask the experts on the TiVo forum, follow the link in my last post.

If you do decide to get a TiVo then they are only available second hand now. You can look for one in the hardware sakles on this forum or take your chances with eBay. Or you can buy one with a guarentee from Here


Fred Smith

Well-known Member
Mr. Flibble,

As you will be aware 0800 telephone numbers are not used in Southern Ireland, and there will not be an equivalent 1800 number for TiVo. You would have to use WorldCom or similar at a chargeable call rate.

If you are just receiving the Irish four terrestrial channels RTE 1, Network 2, TV3 and TG4 then by using a Northern Ireland Postcode i.e. BT? ???. You may get suitable TV listings. However, if you have local cable (NTL or Chorus) it is unlikely that you will get listings of all the available channels.

There are a couple of Southern Ireland posters on the TiVo UK Community, one from Limerick and one from Cork but I think they are using Sky digiboxes with UK cards
Top Bottom