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neurological dryer lint

dirty deeds... and the dunderchief


don't just stand there with your nose up

two big video-on-demand (VoD) services have dropped in the past few months, both of which i have access to:

netflix watch now - all netflix users have access to the VoD library, and for every $ they spend a month with the service, they get an hour of video a month. top-tier customers end up with 18 hours, for example. the video is windows DRM'd so you can only watch from a windows system running IE6 or later. you have to install their plugin first - but the setup only took about a minute. the video quality isn't too bad, it's a little grainy at normal size and quite a bit more in full screen, but much better than average quality streamed from the web.

so the whole experience is pretty impressive - except for the selection, which is abysmal. they have a good range of classics - i tested with bridge on the river kwai - but look for movies in the last 20 years and you'll find about 80% straight-to-video crap. out of hundreds of options i managed to find three or four that i hadn't seen and actually might care to watch. hopefully their catalog grows - i will make extensive use of the program if it does.

amazon unbox + tivo - i would have tested this, but tivo's usually great customer service has absolutely botched my account. the story: when we all lived at the compound b and i had our tivos on the same account so that we could move shows between our DVR's. i'm just now moving my tivo to its own account under my email address - but tivo can't seem to make that happen, and after four calls, three hang-ups and about three hours on the phone i still don't have a separate account. so i can't try the amazon service yet, in which you pick shows or movies from their site, pay a purchase or rental fee, and they are dropped onto your tivo.

man, everyone's customer service has been screwing me lately. first tivo, then my bank - another group with legendary service... i feel like i've been talking with cincinnati bell's callcenter lately...


for this post

Anonymous Anonymous Says:

Thanks for making me feel good about my hassle free DVR and for the ability to leech information ffrom someone who actually tries, buys, listens to and summarizes everything the moment it comes into existence. Oh, and thanks for the evite or whatever that link was you left for me last week. I feel so loved. What motivates you to stay so on-top of things that seem like a waste of time to me? Keep up the good work.
-The Masked Marauder

Blogger Justin Hall Says:

i guess i'm just a loser, tony, i don't spend my time on stuff as awesome as yours. like metro scarves. and balls.

BTW, while i may complain about this one feature of my tivo, otherwise it's the greatest AV device i've ever owned. connectivity to my PC is great, built-in DVD burning is flawless, and the media player features (mp3, video and photo sharing from my PC) are way easy.

i always notice that people with time warner DVR's tend to bring up how 'painless' theirs is every time tivo is brought up - almost like they are trying to convince themselves that they have a quality product.

in any case - you enjoy your device and i will enjoy mine. woot!

Blogger ryanham Says:

Can I enjoy your device?

P.S.: I have a tivo, but I needs to get it hooked up to broadband. I feel like I'm missing half the experience with the friggin phone cable strung across two rooms. Have you had any success with hooking it up via wireless? I don't really want to buy their proprietary wireless adapter if it's not needed, but I also don't want to spend hours trying to get a linksys bridge configured right.

Blogger Justin Hall Says:

i've never tried it with wireless personally. i've heard that it works just fine, though, and i believe there are a handful of approved adapters you can use.

Blogger ryanham Says:

Kewl. Good information. I guess I should actually read that tivo site someday.

Looks like my wireless setup price point is $90 or so (need an AP as well).

Blogger Bragg Says:

i have a handful of approved adapter at your service whenever you need it. dinner first ladies...

Blogger Simon Says:

I have mine hooked up on wireless, and it's flawless...

BTW, with adding HD I wasn't willing to dish out $800 for HD Tivo, so I opted to get the Time Warner DVR, so I am now using both Tivo and TW's DVR. Both have good things and bad. Overall, the usability of Tivo is better, but TW's allows me to record 2 shows at once and watch another. It's pretty impressive. That's about the only thing it's got on my Tivo. It's painful to FF and Rewind through large chunks of shows, or sort through your "List" of shows. I don't even know how much memory I have remaining on the DVR.

I'll check out the Unbox+Tivo deal and let you know how I like it...

Blogger Simon Says:

Ok, so I got $15 credit for signing up. So I "rented" X3, I'll check it out tonight and let you know how it is.

Blogger Justin Hall Says:

i'll save you the trouble: it's not as good as the first two.

heh. yeah let me know what the quality of the video is like and how soon it shows up...

Blogger MikeE Says:

DishTV's DVR is nice ... only had it for a couple days but I like it so far. No need for a phone line or internet ... just don't have two weeks out worth of info. I can live with that.

Blogger Tony Says:

thanks for ruining my little sir name. JUSTIN. its not about us each enjoying our devices, its about us fighting about it!

mr R0p3r, brian helped me with the wireless linksys bridge and it was kinda painless... if i can do it, you probably can too.

does tivo still not support wpa-psk?

i just got tversity working with my 360, and it rules, i just wanted to boast about it. i dont have any friends.

Anonymous Artie Says:

I've done the TiVo wireless thing. It's painless. Plug and play.


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