HD Tivo and new DirecTV HD Channels

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by David K Warren, Sep 9, 2005.

  1. David K Warren

    David K Warren Auditioning

    Sep 8, 2005
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    Forgive me if this has already been discussed, but I remember reading something about the new DirecTV HD network channels coming online later this year not being able to accessed using the current models of the HD Tivo boxes. Can anyone confirm this? I'm dying to purchase one now that the prices are coming down but don't want to do so if I can't watch/record the new channels.
  2. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

    Aug 22, 2000
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    The HD Tivo will not be compatible with the new local HD channels as they will be in MPEG4 format. Local HD will be offered in the top 12 markets this year if they can get their satellite problems worked out. Early next year, the next 12 markets will come on line. After a year or more when all of the people that want HD locals have upgraded their equipment, they will start upgrading people who are getting HD locals in white area or ones that subscribe to the HD CONUS channels. They will then switch all of the HD to MPEG 4 and the HD Tivo will only be able to record OTA HD and satellite SD. If you are willing to living with that setup, you can. The Tivo will still work until it has a major hardware failure (Drives aren't considered major since replacements are available for cheap).

    If you have an HD Tivo and you decide to subscribe to your locals in HD via satellite, then you will be eligible for an upgrade. It's only speculation right now, but D* has never left a customer with incompatible hardware. They recently has a hardware swap for customers whose locals are on the satellite at 72.5. Some older receivers couldn't work with 3 satellite locations and they were replaced for free.

  3. Charlie Campisi

    Charlie Campisi Screenwriter

    Aug 20, 2004
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    Robert's got it right. At today's prices on the HD tivo (about $200 after rebate), and with D*'s track record of replacing boxes, I think it is a safe buy. It will always work with OTA local HD, so when the locals over the dish come out in mpeg4, it will have no effect on your ability to record network HD with an antenna. Only when they switch HBO, Discovery, ESPN, etc to mpeg4 will the box be obsolete, for those channels. At that time, D* will probably replace it. Even so, my GUESS is that is at least 2 years away. $200 for 2 years of HD tivo with a likely free upgrade at the end? No brainer.

    Not to mention you can ebay your old HD D* tuner for about $130-150, so the out of pocket cost is close to nil.

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