DVRs

Can I use my Dish DVR drive in another DVR and keep the content?

DVR

Episode 1152

Jerry from Whittier, CA

Jerry added a hard drive to his DVR, and he's considering a change from Dish to another service. Will he be able to keep his content? Leo says no. They're probably formatted with the same standard, but the issue is that the content is encrypted by Dish. He could still use it, but he'd have to "rebless" it with the new DVR and that would require erasing the hard drive completely. That's because Hollywood is deathly afraid he'll take that content, burn DVDs and sell them.

How can I use a DVR if I'm blind?

Episod 1093

Larry from Sherman Oaks, CA

Larry has failing eyesight and records audio to SD cards to listen. He says he can't record using his DVR and just get the audio. He would like to record nonstop for hours on end. Leo says that DVRs aren't very well designed, especially for accessibility. Leo says that TIVO used to work on uVerse but sadly, not anymore. One suggestion may be MythTV. He can buy it pre-built or because it is open source, he can build his own.

How can I DVR broadcast signals?

Episode 1090

Jamie from Long Beach, CA

Jamie wants to cut the cord and has heard about the Channel Master DVR for broadcast. Leo says that the chatroom recommends it all the time, and if he has a good antenna signal, it's a great option since HD is uncompressed over the air. But can he watch it elsewhere? Leo says it's fairly easy with it's ToGo capability, which would let him move his programs to his phone or tablet. He can also get just about everything online except for live programming like sports, awards ceremonies, and the news.

Supreme Court Reviews Aereo Decision

Episode 1077

This is the week that the Supreme Court is hearing the Aereo Decision. Aereo takes broadcast signals using thousands of dime-sized antenntas, and routes them through the Internet. Users rent DVR space in order to record TV shows and watch live TV. Leo says that it's a cool technology, but broadcasters have sued Aereo claiming copyright violations for leeching the broadcast signal out of the air without permission or paying retransmission rights. Aereo says all they're doing is renting out antennas and hard drives for their customers and they've won many times with that defense.

Can I attach a second DVR to a cable box?

Episode 1073

Judy from Seal Beach, CA

Judy wants to know if she can buy her own DVR and use it with the same cable connection as the rest of the apartment. Leo says she could get a TIVO or a ChannelMaster that would do this, but since it won't have its own cable card from the cable company, it would need to connect to the set top box that's already there. This means she'll need an IR blaster so that the DVR can communicate to the cable box to change channels at the appropriate times. Some set top boxes have a link cable that the TIVO would understand, so she could hook it up that way.

How can I get programs off my DVR?

Episode 1033

Mike from Trebuco Canyon, CA

Mike would like to transfer his movies from his DVR and play in his clinic. Leo says that Hollywood considers that piracy, but Leo says it's fair use. The only way he can do this is by exploiting the Analog hole. That means he'll have to plug the DVR into a computer that takes a composit or component imput and then capture it in real time while playing it back. It can be done, and he'll have to get some additional hardware (like a capture card), but he can do it. The other option is to buy downloads of the programs from iTunes or Amazon.

How can I get old programs off my cable DVR?

Episode 1028

Joe from Austin, TX

Joe is going to be getting Google's 1GBps Internet access in Austin soon, and he wants to know what DVR he can use. Leo says that third party DVRs are getting harder to find, but TIVO is probably the best option. He wants to get his old programs off the old cable DVR, though. Leo says that the DVR is likely encrypted digitally, so he wouldn't be able to. He could, however, exploit the analog hole by using component cables. It'll be HD, but not digital.

SnapStream Returns With Professional Recording for Media Companies

Episode 1020

Snapstream, an app that would allow users to record TV and play it from the internet, has pivoted and now provides professional DVR services to the broadcasters themselves. The company has begun providing a service to production companies to record television programs with all metadata and provide that to its customers.

Check out more on SnapStream here.