TIVO

TIVO To Put Ads on Your DVR Recordings

Episode 1629

TIVO has announced that they are putting ads in front of every recording they make. Leo says that will be a death knell for the company, that has been struggling since the advent of video on demand. Leo also says it's ironic because TIVO also has a commercial skip button. It's outrageous because you spend hundreds of dollars for a TIVO, and then you pay for a monthly guide subscription. We shouldn't have to deal with ads from TIVO as a reward. Plus, we really don't need DVRs anymore, and if we do, Leo says that PLEX on your Roku does just as good a job.

What's the Best Over-the-Air DVR?

TiVO

Episode 1577

Mike from Long Beach, CA

Mike is thinking of getting an over-the-air DVR and antenna. What's the best one to get? Leo says he's a TiVO fan, but it is the priciest option out there. There's also ChannelMaster, which is a nice OTA and they don't charge for the TV Guide. Silicon Dust also makes the HD Home Run. But Leo is a fan of TiVO because it lets him ad-skip. 

As for Antennas, check out TVFool.com and AntennaWeb.org.

How can I repurpose a TIVO?

Roamio

Episode 1567

Kevin from North Carolina

Kevin wants to know how he can update the firmware on his old TIVo Roamio. Is there a way to put a new OS on it, like KODI? Leo says that would be difficult, it was designed to be a streaming media player. TIVOCommunity.com is a good place to go to see if anyone is doing that. Another good source is WeakKnees.com since they resell hardware.

How can I stream TV shows and movies online?

Roku

Episode 1556

Michelle from San Pedro, CA

Michelle has finally cut the cable and wants to know how to stream her movies and TV shows from the internet. Does she need special equipment? Leo says maybe. If she has a smartTV, then she might not. But Leo recommends getting a streaming device anyway and he recommends the Roku. Streaming services include Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu. But there's also new services coming from Disney and many others. How does she pay for them? Leo says she would have to give them a credit card.

Can I get my old programs off my DVR?

TiVo BOLT VOX

Episode 1514

Eric from Orange County, CA

Eric cut the cable and wants to know if he can get programs off his old TiVo. Leo says in the first generation TiVos, he would be able to. But copy protection has locked down and encrypted that data. TIVO to Go was an option, but it was a very poor solution. There is one way to do it still, and that's the analog hole. Eric can connect his TIVO using the analog component jacks (red, white and yellow), but it will be standard definition.

Do I have to record every episode on my TiVo Bolt?

TiVo Bolt

Episode 1491

Scott from Dallas, TX

Scott has a 500GB TiVo Bolt and wants to set it up to just save the recent week's worth of recordings, not every single recording forever. Leo says it's in the settings. He can set it to just keep a week's worth and delete the rest, as well as to delete when it starts to run out of space. Can he upgrade the hard drive? Leo says yes. He will also probably have to "bless" the hard drive so that TiVo will read it. Leo recommends contacting Weaknees.com.

Can I get recorded TV programs off my TIVO?

TiVo BOLT VOX

Episode 1470

Michael from Kansas City, MO

Michael wants to know if he can get the programs off his TIVO. Leo says it was possible with the Series 1 TIVO. But now the data is encrypted, so it's almost impossible to decrypt it and copy it off. TiVo does have a feature called TIVO to Go, but the only way he could really do it is to exploit the analog hole. That will lower the quality a bit, but he can use the analog connections that would go to his TV and connect them to a recorder. Then he could play the content back and record it in real time. It can be complicated though, because of HDCP.