There’s No Two Ways About It…

The Cable Company/Tivo is fucking me royally with this switchover to Digital Cable in 2009. By now YOU’VE ALL SEEN the commercials. It’s a big push to get everyone to buy a ‘digital-ready’ TV. Bullshit, if you’ve got a cable box, you’re good to go. The cable box will decode that bullshit for you and your ancient TV (MOM).

However, if you have a Dual-Tuner TiVo grab your ankles and prepare for a jolly rogering. Once the cable goes digital, my Tivo Series 2 DT tuner will no longer be able to record two channels at one time. Digital cable cannot be ‘split’ as analog cable can. Therefore in order to record two channels at one time, I’m going to have to buy a NEW TiVo device, a TIVO HD DVR (which I believe is about 3 bones), then I have to pay my cable company $50 to send a ‘tech’ out to my house with 1 or 2 CableCARDs that he can then stick in my brand new TiVo so that the TiVo unit can replace the cable box and record two channels at once.

Sounds almost reasonable, in fact, CableCard rental is only $2 per month compared to the Cable Box rental of $6 a month from my Cable Company. There’s just one tiny catch. The CableCARDs don’t support Video On Demand. No HBO on Demand, No Showtime on Demand, No Howard TV on Demand, nada. You need a cable box for that.

So as of right now, in the “dark” ages, my analog television can record two channels at once, and I can enjoy any movie on demand I want.

Come February 2009, as we enter into the BOLD NEW MEDIA age, I won’t be able to do shit. I can still watch any movie I want, as long as a television show I’d like to record isn’t on at the same time because my very expensive, monthly fee ridden VCR will be recording that.

Thanks a lot FCC, you BONED us AGAIN; and for what? So Yuppies and Hood-Rich Sumbitches can watch Football for 19 weeks a year with greener greens and brownier browns?

Thanks a padload, Chet.

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~ by chrismcdevitt on December 12, 2008.

2 Responses to “There’s No Two Ways About It…”

  1. You could always just get a cable company dvr and that would also solve the ondemand problem you’d be facing. Or if you want to stick with tivo, you could call tivo up, explain your situation and see what kind of deals they throw at you. And while the Tivo HD is $300, the Tivo website has rebuilt ones with guarantees on them for $179 https://www3.tivo.com/store/boxes.do?type=renewed&Wt.ac=tivo_home_factoryrenewed_img

    Tivo just added Netflix to their service. It’s kickass

  2. There is actually no technical reason why your cable could not be “split” as it is now. In this regard, the comparison of Dig vs Analog is simply a matter of amplitude (digs run about 6db lower than analogs). If signal level does turn out to be an issue, a small amp can remedy the problem.

    It sounds like your TiVo is using analog channels currently?
    I can tell you that Comcast (for what it’s worth) has absolutely no immediate plans of dropping a substantial amount of analogs at this time. They will keep them around for people like my Mom (and you I guess), who only has an analog TV (or DVR) with no plans of changing. It’s a sell point for cable. This will, however, limit your recording capabilities to your basic/standard line up.

    Cable cards are a pain in the ass. Do not fool yourself. The lack of 2-way support is, as you mentioned, a big issue that has no change on the horizon (it’s some stupid political reason I think). I might guess that this will change when the biggies change to DOCSIS upstream schemes for video. That IS on the horizon for Comcast.
    Hope this gives you a tiny bit of help?

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