Recent Articles

TiVo File Sharing: A Great Way to Torture the Relatives

You know how Great Aunt Emily regales you for hours and hours and hours with photos and cute stories of her grandchild, Precious Poopsie Woopsie Darling, over Thanksgiving turkey? Or how about your girlfriend who e-mails album after album of her Charming Kitties to you? Well, with Tivo, you can exact revenge against the photo-mongers of the world by commandeering the television with your very special photos.

Check Out Best Buy's Best Buys For Father's Day Gift Ideas

Best Buy. It’s almost a household name these days, especially if you’re a gadget junkie. They're ubiquitous, easy to find, and they’re open late. But they're also huge, and you don't always have time to browse for hours at a stretch.

With Father's Day right around the corner, Best Buy's a great place to take the kids shopping for Dad. If you're not sure what to get for him this year, this list is a perfect place to begin.

TiVo® Series3™ Dual Tuner Digital Video Recorder

Model # TCD648250B

A Homebrew How-To: Picking the Perfect PC Tuner Card

The idea to build my own home theater box came to me one day as I hooked my new DLP HDTV up to the huge stack of components piled next to it. My stack had an audio amplifier, an aging Series 1 TiVo, an HD cable box, a DVD player, another DVD player with upsampling, an X-box, and a radio tuner. If you’ve ever hooked up a set of components like this, you know there are literally dozens of ways to wire it up and make it work halfway coherently with a multi-function remote.

I should know: I’ve been hooking up, configuring, and re-reconfiguring these components for more than a decade, through several eras of technology. That there isn’t one of the original components in the stack is irrelevant, though, because I still consider it the same stack.

Amazon Unbox on Tivo

TiVo recently announced a partnership with The partnership, called "Amazon Unbox on TiVo," allows TiVo users to buy or rent videos on Amazon and have them downloaded directly to their TiVo DVR's. This article explains how the program works and what you need to do to enable your TiVo DVR for this service.

Getting Started

To download videos from Amazon, you'll need a Series2 or Series3 TiVo DVR. Unfortunately, the old Series1 and DirecTV DVR's don't support Amazon downloads. Next, you'll need to make sure your TiVo DVR is networked.

Once your Series2 or Series3 TiVo DVR is networked, you're ready to register your DVR with Amazon to enable the service. Just follow these easy steps:

Exploring Today's DVR Options: Homebrew 101

Welcome to Part Four of the Exploring Today's DVR Options series: Homebrew 101! By now you've looked at some of the integrated options that were discussed in Part 2, and the standalone units covered by Part 3, but if you aren't sure they're what you're looking for, then the final (and most complicated) choice is left: homebrew.

Exploring Today's DVR Options: Standalone DVRs

In Part 2 of this series, we discussed the integrated DVR. Today's article will cover standalone DVRs and some of the different options available on today's market.

A standalone DVR is one that the consumer generally leases or purchases, and is used in addition to the box provided for you by your cable or satellite service provider. These units can come with a bunch of different features and prices.

Manage Your Blockbuster Online or NetFlix Account With "Movie Rentals" on TiVo

Tired of late fees and inconvenient trips to your local brick and mortar movie rental store? Maybe you're one of those people who get that sudden urge to watch a great movie, but hate having to drive across town to get your fix. If so, then TiVo has a great solution for you: Movie Rentals.

Movie Rentals is an application that allows you to access your Blockbuster Online, Netflix, or Amazon Unbox account directly from a TiVo. A slick program, Movie Rentals is not only easy to use, it also alleviates the need for a web browser on a computer.

Here are the features for the various content providers, as listed on the Movie Rentals web site:

Amazon Unbox Features:

Exploring Today's DVR Options: Integrated DVRs

You need a DVR. In Part 1 of this series, we explored some of the options out there. Now what? It's time to look at what's available within each of the three main categories. If you've decided that you like the simplicity of going with your local cable or satellite provider, here's a breakdown of the top three companies offering integrated services so you can check out what they have to offer as far DVRs go.


Cable is a convenient, and popular, viewing option. There's no need for extra equipment (such as a satellite dish or extra tuners for different televisions in the house) if all you're interested in is your basic cable service, but there are drawbacks in going with cable when considering DVR service.

Exploring Today's DVR Options

So you want a DVR. If you’re one of the many consumers asking, “Now what?” don’t feel like you’re alone. Navigating the options can be a daunting business, but knowing what you need makes the decision a much simpler task.

In this four-part series, we’ll first look at what your basic choices are and the pros and cons of each; later on in the series, we’ll take a focused look at what’s available within each option.

Like all electronics, DVRs come in many different shapes, sizes, options, and price tags, all to fit the various consumer needs and wants; but if you follow the trail to the top, you’ll find that when it comes to DVRs, there are three main types: integrated, standalone, and the homebrew (or "Do It Yourself," commonly "DIY").

Choosing Your First DVR

When TiVo revolutionized television viewing in 1999, I didn’t jump on the bandwagon. Being a cautious spender, I decided I'd wait a few electronics generations. I held out until I could record my favorite shows on a cheaper machine with fewer technical issues not addressed before production.

Happily, many cable and satellite companies now lease DVRs to customers at affordable prices. Unfortunately, my cable company has not stepped up to the plate and I'm hesitant about switching from cable to satellite. So with a limited budget, and the endless search capacity of broadband internet, I’ve decided that this is the year I step into the world of manipulating “live” TV.