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Looking to "cut the cord" Tivo a good option?

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Adam Gregorich, Feb 19, 2019.

  1. JQuintana

    JQuintana Banned
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    We got lucky and jumped on the Tivo train right as they were phasing out the "service included" with the Roamio OTA machines. We paid $299 for a nice Roamio box with lifetime service. I hope it lasts a good long while since Tivo has once again forced folks to do separate subscription to use the newer boxes.
     
  2. Message #22 of 40 Feb 22, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2019
    DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    I did OTA for a few years in Rochester. When I moved to NoVA I did a check with my indoor antennaes and found reception was inadequate. I’d have to do an attic or roof antenna to possibly get good enough reception. Too much work for me. So I got cable. :)

    If I quit cable TV, I’ll be keeping and adding more streaming. OTA isn’t a practical option for me now.
     
  3. Adam Gregorich

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    Can you access Sling via your TiVo or do you use a different device (roku, etc)?
     
  4. JQuintana

    JQuintana Banned
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  5. RICK BOND

    RICK BOND Stunt Coordinator

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    I cut out my cable last year ! : ) NO more cable boxes ! Bought 2 HDTV indoor antenna's and 2 4K Fire TV Sticks from Amazon !! That's all you need ! : )
     
  6. morasp

    morasp Second Unit

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    I get Sling TV with a Fire TV box, I don't think Sling is available on Tivo.
     
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  7. Steve_Smith

    Steve_Smith Stunt Coordinator

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    Going in a different direction I also looked to Tivo or some other recording device for OTA once I cut the cord 12 years ago, and I use WINTV, which is a USB dongle that the antenna would connect to and then a computer/laptop is the recording device. The software is the tuner, which is good for OTA/digital/and if you still had cable but watched on your computer it would show and record cable channels also. You can watch and record 2 channels at once either by manual or using the timer to record. The only thing you pay for is the one time buying of WINTV, there is nothing after that. If you even begin to think about this but are not sure, when I bought it I felt the same way but was told this is considered hardware and not software, so if you don't like it you can return it within 30 days (as opposed to software when you open it you can't return it).
     
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  8. Adam Gregorich

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    So i got a cheap small outdoor style antenna at Walmart last night to test with and I got 30 channels with the antenna inside next to the TV. I got ABC, NBC and CBS, but not Fox or CW. I have talked to others in the area who get 50 channels including those, so I ordered a Winegard 8200U from Amazon and will mount that in the attic next weekend and verify I can get all the networks. I was surprised at the variety of sub channels! Of course there was a lot of crap (QVC, HSN, etc), but there were a lot of other channels that have content I am interested in: MeTV, Antenna TV, Comit, H&I, etc.
     
  9. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    When I did OTA around 2010, I got about 10 channels: the major networks and various sub channels. There was a really good music-video sub channel that we used a lot. Obviously, I'm nearly a decade and a major city removed from the state of OTA today. I'm not surprised that it can be a cable-like channel selection if you've got reception and are near a large enough city.
     
  10. John Dirk

    John Dirk Cinematographer
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    Hey Dave [and Adam]. Did you include distribution amps in your setup? If you have multiple TV's you want to serve with a single antenna, your cable runs total over maybe 25 ft and/or you're more than 20 miles from most broadcast towers you probably need one. I've done a couple of OTA installations for friends as well as for myself at the old and current house. I actually just finished an attic mount installation for a friend yesterday. Without the distribution amp, only about 18 or so channels were received. With it, roughly 50 are received. The amps are cheap, [usually under $30.00] and available at Lowes or, of course, Amazon.

    In the current house I'm receiving a whopping 96 channels, with maybe 50 of then containing interesting and unique content.
     
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  11. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Me, no. I just had indoor antennas on my two TVs when I did OTA. My current location isn’t good for OTA so it’s cable and streaming.
     
  12. John Dirk

    John Dirk Cinematographer
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    Curious how you arrived at that conclusion.
     
  13. Adam Gregorich

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    In the test I did, no. I did just purchase a Winegard LNA-200. Its not a distribution amp, but one that does upstream before the splitter. I will try it with and without the amp to see which way works best.
     
  14. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    I eliminated cable over 15 years ago. I'm about 70 miles from most of the transmitters, so I got the two longest range antennas (UHF & VHF) I could find. The VHF one came with a combiner to filter and combine the two antenna signals. Total cost was a little over $200, but consider I've saved an average of about $80/month for 15 years. That's over $14,000. So, I think it was worth a little effort. It actually didn't require that much. I installed a bullet amp at the antennas, the type that has a power injector further down the line. Then I just used the existing cable wiring to distribute it throughout the house, since all the TVs were obviously already wired. I had to change the direction of most of the splitters, which took all of about ten minutes. I pick up about 70 channels, with some duplicates. I'm between Denver, CO. and Cheyenne, WY. and the antennas pick up both, since they're basically at 180 degree angles from me. The only network I have a little trouble picking up is ABC, because it's the only one that broadcasts on VHF. Still, of my four TVs, three receive it pretty reliably. Ironically, the only one that usually can't get it is the one that's closest to the antennas.

    When I think about how much $$ I've saved over the last 15+ years, plus the time I've not wasted in the life-suck that cable can be, I realize it was one of the smartest things I've probably ever done. I thought life would unlivable without cable, but it's actually improved it. So much of that stuff you "can't live without" actually gets in the way of your life.
     
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  15. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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  16. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    I have cable internet. Back when I got rid of cable TV, I had DSL. Remember this was over 15 years ago. I dumped my phone company phone line and switched to cable internet (no TV) several years ago.
     
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  17. Adam Gregorich

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    I still have cable for Internet and Ooma for voice service. Just can’t justify the cost for cable as we don’t watch much beyond the network channels and there are too many other options with Prime, Hulu and Netflix
     
  18. Adam Gregorich

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    OK I installed a Winegard 8200 antenna in the attic today. I will wire it up tomorrow. at 14' long it takes up about half of the attic. I ended up screwing the mount to the top of the truss with the pipe hanging down. I think I will just wire in the amp from the start.
     
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  19. B-ROLL

    B-ROLL Cinematographer

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    You might find this site useful it should help with locating the best place to aim the antenna ...
    Unlike cable, your reception may be affected by weather, helicopters and cats on the roof :cool: ...
     
  20. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    I missed this.

    I did some simple tests back in 2013 with my indoor antennas to check what I could get. And then I referenced the OTA website everyone uses for understanding transmission sites, strengths, and directions. I'd have to have roof-mounted antenna, possibly multiple to cover the various directions of interest. And between the nuisance of that, dealing with HOA approvals, and very low SAF, OTA is not a good solution for me in my location. :)

    And moreso as everything is going streaming and increasing amounts of what I watch isn't OTA.
     
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