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   PastimesHome Theater Systems - Designs, Products, Tips and Info


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To: J.F. Sebastian who wrote (229)9/30/2019 12:28:34 PM
From: John Koligman
1 Recommendation   of 290
 
One good thing about Xfinity if you want to save even more, especially if you don't use a lot of data is their cell phone plan. They don't charge per line, and include unlimited talk/text for nothing. Data is 12 bucks a month per gig. They used to have a $40 unlimited data plan but I think that has changed. My wife and I live in a densely populated area with Xfinity hotspots all over the place, (the phones automatically connect to them via wifi) so we don't use data and our monthly cell bill for TWO iPhones is $7.26... Hard to believe but true.

John

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From: Don Green10/12/2019 8:14:31 PM
1 Recommendation   of 290
 
I am researching various Cord Cutting Options to replace my sources Comcast basic cable package and My Tivo DVR.

I have been a TIVO user for more than 10 years and still recommend it. What I am most frustrated with is paying for 75-150 channels but honestly only watching 10 at most on a monthly basis. So I am trying to determine how to best find the 10 channels I generally watch and maintain the capability of recording them and when desired to save a episode or video to my PC which I can generally with TIVO.

So far I have narrowed down DVRs to HDHomeRun and Plex TV. Since I am already a PLEX subscriber/ user they are in the lead. I plan on buying an HD antenna soon to experiment with.

If any has any ideas or suggestions I would love to see your stream or OTA thoughts.

flixed.io

techhive.com

cordcutters.com

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To: Don Green who wrote (231)10/12/2019 11:44:17 PM
From: J.F. Sebastian
   of 290
 
I can provide a bit of advice here.

For HD reception, the antenna you choose is key. Can it be mounted on your rooftop? Can it be outside at all, or does it need to be an indoor model? If inside, do you have an attic you could put it in?

I have a 1 By One flat leaf antenna inside my home, but reception is hit-and-miss. Bad weather, which around here is mostly light rain, can affect the signal. Sometimes, even in good weather and for no reason I've been able to determine, the angle of the antenna has to be moved slightly to get a clear picture without pixelation. Overall it's been a little frustrating.

However, if I was able to put a larger aluminum antenna in my attic (or certainly outside), from everything I've read I'd get much better and more reliable performance.

When OTA works, it's wonderful since the signal is not compressed like on cable or satellite. You get a crisp, clear picture that you just have to see.

Ironically, I just went back to Comcast with a 2-year deal to use with my TiVo. Hopefully they won't raise the taxes to the point that streaming would be less expensive, but streaming was getting overpriced and it was time to say goodbye.

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From: J.F. Sebastian10/14/2019 4:22:20 PM
   of 290
 
POLL: Which streaming device do you use most often for streaming services to your TV, like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, etc.?

Votes Cast : 11
Which device do you use *most* for streaming services?
Amazon Fire TV
 
1
Apple TV
 
3
Google Chromecast
 
0
NVIDIA Shield
 
0
Roku
 
4
TiVo DVR
 
0
A non-TiVo DVR, like Xfinity X1
 
0
My Blu-ray player
 
0
My TV's built-in streaming
 
3
Other
 
0
 
This poll is now closed (poll closed on 31 Oct 2019).

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From: Frank Walker10/15/2019 5:03:15 PM
   of 290
 
I want to buy a 4K-capable “HDMI splitter” gadget so the output from my DVR or PVR can feed TVs in my 2 main rooms. 2 outputs would be OK but more outputs, like 4, could be useful eventually for a kitchen TV and another room TV.

The splitters with 2 outputs are usually self-powered while the splitters with 3 or more outputs have a small wall-wart power supply.

These splitters seem to be available in 30 Hz or 60Hz 4K varieties.Should I get the 60Hz version?

Initially I will just be using 2K (aka 1080P) video but will likely be upgrading the DVR device to 4K in a few months. I’m expecting the splitters should work with 2K without problems. For 4K I might need to upgrade some of my HDMI cables.

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To: Frank Walker who wrote (234)10/15/2019 5:06:24 PM
From: Don Green
2 Recommendations   of 290
 
Check this out if you haven't already

techguided.com

newegg.com

bestreviews.com

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To: Don Green who wrote (235)10/16/2019 1:54:29 PM
From: Frank Walker
   of 290
 
Thanks. Note that a splitter is for connecting multiple TVs to one source, while a switch is for connecting multiple sources to one TV.

Several specifications to consider in a splitter, and at many suppliers, even Monoprice, the full specifications are not included for all devices. For best future capability I should probably look for 4K capability at 60Hz and 4:4:4 colour. However I’m not sure current consumer devices such as a DVR actually output 4K 60hz 4:4:4 so maybe a lower end splitter would be OK. As most of the splitters are affordable between $20 and $100 I might as well get the best one I can find. HDMI often has connection problems so I will check the reviews for reliability issues.

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To: Frank Walker who wrote (236)10/16/2019 4:03:53 PM
From: J.F. Sebastian
   of 290
 
A 4K splitter sounds like a good idea for making it future proof.

However, I'm not aware of any DVR that outputs in 4K because nothing is broadcast in that yet. You can get 4K on some streaming services like Netflix, but I believe you have to use a streaming box for that such as a Roku or your 4K TV.

Please correct me if I'm wrong about that.

I believe 4K broadcast TV is coming, but I'm only aware of it being available over-the-air (OTA). The bandwidth required for 4K is substantial, so it'll be years before it's available on cable or satellite.

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To: J.F. Sebastian who wrote (237)10/16/2019 10:58:38 PM
From: Frank Walker
1 Recommendation   of 290
 
My reference to a DVR was what I thought was the term used in the USA for the set top box (STB) device supplied by the typical TV channel supplier. In Canada here the STB is called a PVR (personal video recorder) if it can record TV programs as well as play live TV channels (that are usually coming in by some non-over-the-air wire source such as cable company coaxial or internet).

The STB and TV channel source I use is similar to what is available with AT&T’s U-verse system. My supplier TELUS might have licensed the technology from AT&T, not sure. The TV channels are transmitted over the internet. With a 50mbit connection 4K is possible. There are only about three 4K channels available here right now, if I sign up. I just have an older 1080P PVR but lots of people have upgraded to a 4K PVR version, it can play back 4K. My supplier TELUS is always trying to get me to upgrade to their fibre connection (fibre cable is in my garage ready to be activated for very little extra cost). I have a couple of 4K TVs but have not yet upgraded to fibre because I know there is not much 4K video available, and I don’t really need more internet speed. Currently have a total of 25 mbit and that is OK for 2 1080P TV channels plus a couple of people websurfing. But the trend toward 4K is clear so I might as well get ready and do some upgrades.

(btw I typed the above post on my new iPhone 8. Painful, it would have been much easier on an iPad or computer)

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To: Frank Walker who wrote (238)10/17/2019 12:14:21 AM
From: J.F. Sebastian
   of 290
 
OK, now I understand. Yes, most of the current STBs can use services for live TV such as PS Vue and YouTube TV, which also have cloud DVR/PVR functionality.

They do offer 4K content on some channels if your connection supports it, just as you say. I don't yet own a 4K TV myself, so when I was using PS Vue I couldn't take advantage of any of that content.

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