My 2 Cents: This new toy is for all you TiVo lovers out there … I do like the DIY method myself but this little item seems too nice, if you can afford it …
When TiVo discontinued its high-end cable-ready high-def DVR, the TiVo Series3, it was really just making room for a new product in the line: the TiVo HD XL. The new TiVo is a near twin of the existing TiVo HD, but for three changes: itâ€™s got a much larger 1 terabyte hard drive (enough capacity for 150 hours of HD programming); itâ€™s THX-certified; and it includes the premium TiVo backlit remote. The package costs $600â€“about the price that the TiVo Series3 was going for, and twice that of the â€śstandardâ€ť TiVo HD. As with any TiVo, of course, youâ€™ll also need to budget money for a subscription fee: $13 a month, $129 a year, or $399 for the lifetime of the box. True, you can do a DIY upgrade on the standard TiVo HD by adding the improved remote ($50) and a 500GB expansion hard drive ($150), but that will cost nearly as much and still leave you with less recording capacityâ€“and a lot of extra wires.
The bigger question is whether you want a TiVo at all, when you can get a â€śfreeâ€ť high-def DVR from your cable company. And the answer comes down to whether you find TiVoâ€™s superior design and laundry list of extras worth the additional cashâ€“and whether you can live with some of the compromises. Among the TiVo features that go beyond recording TV shows: YouTube videos, renting and buying Amazon Unbox videos, Rhapsody music, online scheduling, copying recorded programs to PCs or portable devices (TiVo To Go), access to video and audio podcastsâ€¦the list goes on and on. Whether or not those featuresâ€“and the TiVoâ€™s corresponding dearth of access to your cable systemâ€™s video-on-demand functionsâ€“are worth the price of TiVoâ€™s hardware and subscription is a question that only you can answer.