I've owned a DVR (various brands) over the past 3 years or so. I don't think I could live without one now. I believe they actually cut down on my TV watching time because I can watch a recorded show and skip all the nonsense (commercials).
And NASCAR, wow. I can't remember the last time I watched a complete race from start to finish. I can put it on the first fast foward speed and watch for things to happen (wrecks, cautions, etc) and go back to play to see what happened. 50 laps to go, just watch the end. Perfect!
But if like me, you watch maybe four or five different shows, suddenly it feels like its a burden to try and watch them all without your DVR filling up... I look forward to mid May when I can start catching up!
Another advantage is that you can easily tape long shows... I guess NASCAR races are one example. NFL games too, or in my case, "Ghost Hunters: Live!" on the Sci-Fi channel last night, which started at 10pm and finished at about 4am. Try doing that with VHS!
1) I watch the News at 1.2X normal speed, skip the sport, financials, fluffy bunny stories and all the adverts and end up getting through an entire hours broadcast in about 10 minutes.
2) I can beat the networks at their "Guess what time we're going to schedule this show this week!" game.. (May not be a problem in other countries but anyone who's tried watching an entire series of ANYTHING in Austalia will know exactly what I'm talking about - you'd need to have a 'rain-man' like attitude to reading TV guides to find out when episodes are on) - With the PVR I just have one profile saying "Record 'Survivor' whenever its on" - and all I have to do is look at my 'recorded programs' list to see whats been recorded.....
Of course the TV networks in Australia are trying their best to prevent 2) from working and are trying to sue anyone who provides TV listings in electronic format out of business (for some reason they HATE the idea that people might find out WHEN they are going to air shows! :confused . At the moment there is one commercial venture (ICE-TV) providing listings for all Topfield, Windows MCE, Vista and MythTV users - and they are in court against Channel9 as we speak.... the only other sources of listings is a small community group (OzTivo) who update listings manually and are small enough to fly under the radar for now....
If the networks win their legal battle australian PVR use will be sued back into the stone age (ok - prehaps more like the 1980's!).. and TV will surely die? (Long live BitTorrent! )
i also find i watch less TV. i used to sit down, and surf, looking for something to watch. i'd find junk and watch that. now, i only watch shows i've recorded. if there is nothing in my list of recorded shows, i go read a book or something.
There are only two hard things in computer science: cache invalidation, naming things, and off-by-one errors
It depends who you ask. I was taught that you should put in the apostrophe there, but nowadays I usually don't. More info can be found here.
"I'm not back." - Bill Harding, Twister
Joined: Jun 30, 2004
What TV card do you have, and what are its best features?
I actually have 2 "Twinhan DVB-T MiniTer" cards - I had a good Linux "HOWTO" document to assist me with the setup and they were the cheapest DVB-T cards on the market at the time (about AU$70 each) . However, they *do* need a good strong signal and plenty of people have had trouble with them in weak reception areas.
If I were buying now I'd probably go for a DVico dual tuner card which would only use one PCI slot and copes better with weak signals (about AU$200).
The rest of my hardware is fairly vanila:
a AU$100 black "ASUS" tower case with 360W power supply a AU$100 Gigabyte nForce4 motherboard (onboard SPDIF sound + network) a AU$200 AMD Athlon 3200+ (2Ghz) CPU (prices have dropped dramatically now) AU$140 for 512MB RAM AU$150 for 320GB IDE drive AU$60 for a DVD-RW drive AU$100 for nVidia 6600 PCIe card with TV out... I also bought a quieter 90mm fan for the case and a quieter CPU heatsink and fan - so I could actually hear the TV! (Case came with a fan that woudlnt be out of place on a Boeing!)
I do think that I need more disk space and with 500Gb drives dropping in price all the time it wont be long before I pop in a couple and get more than 1TB of space!!
The machine works like a dream and even if theres nothing recorded worth watching I take advantage of '$1 Tuesdays' at our local blockbuster and often get a stack of movies ripped to disk for later viewing.. (That and the stack of BitTorrent stuff I have stashed away for a rainy day too!)