All Geek to Me

April 3, 2008

HD DVR

Filed under: Geek Stuff — britinla @ 1:52 pm

In moving to a new house we signed up for satellite TV as it represented better value than cable. The package came with a HD DVR, so we can record shows in Hi-Definition and do the pause and rewind of live TV. Ours is currently recording new episodes of Torchwood and any Top Gear, so I can catch up on the ones I missed in the weeks before our move.

One feature which ranks high on the geek scale is the ability to request your DVR to record a show from a web browser. This allows you to search the listings in your browser and select programs that you like. Unfortunately, this feature would be useful were it not for the following failings
a) It only allows you to record a specific instance of the show, you do not have the option to record the entire series
b) There seems to be a problem with making requests in the morning, so I cannot do it before I head off for work.
c) The interface for looking through programs via the browser is poor, there is search for a particular show or channel. Moreover, once you scroll down to the channel you want, if you try to move the time forward or back the display rebuilds from the first channel in the list.
d) The aforementioned interface uses Flash, so will not work on my iPhone.

To my surprise, the satellite system also supports TV on demand. Unlike the cable system where you could start watching the show or film as soon as you wanted, the DVR downloads it via the Internet, so you will need to wait until at least part of the program has arrived before viewing.

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