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Cutting The Cord on Cable/Satellite TV Service?

Discussion in 'BYTE ME: Technology discussion' started by LoweTek, May 29, 2009.

  1. TeddyBallgame'sDirtbagSon

    TeddyBallgame'sDirtbagSon lurker

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    447
    If you use a NE area zip code and access your content from PA you WILL be allowed to access live sports on Nesn and csnne(Sox, Bs, Cs) thru dvr but it is seamless because you can still access it through the channel guide. However, you WILL NOT be able to access Local NE channels unless you are using a vpn. You will only receive whatever locals are available through Vue in the market you are accessing from. You WILL be able to share your password and access from multiple markets at the same time but I’m sure there must be some limit to how many devices they will let you get away with. I haven’t put that one to the test, just assuming.
     
  2. TallerThanPedroia

    TallerThanPedroia Civilly Disobedient SoSH Member

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    11,181
    I find that Vue's DVR cuts off the ends of shows a lot (it's mainly fault of the networks, but still), even when shows are on their regular schedule, not just if they happen to follow a sporting event. Are YouTube or Hulu any better at that?
     
  3. TFP

    TFP Dope Dope

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    16,055
    I just bought a house and am moving, and am looking to the make the plunge. I'm gonna go with FIOS internet, Youtube TV, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Spotify/Hulu I think. Can I get away with the 100 mbps from Fios? Or should I bite the bullet and go with the gigabit? Is it possible to get my own FiOS compatible router or should I bite the bullet and buy theirs?

    Also - I have an old Samsung Plasma Smart TV (PN60F8500). I have an old Roku and a new Xbox One. I was going to get an Apple TV (been meaning to get one anyway) and maybe a chrome cast for the spare bedroom or something. Should I get a Roku stick instead of a chromecast?

    Anything I'm missing? It honestly seems too good to be true to be saving $100/mo on this.
     
    #803 TFP, May 11, 2018
    Last edited: May 11, 2018
  4. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

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    18,063
    I'm in the same boat, but I am going with the gigabit from Fios, installation is in like two weeks. So I'd be curious if I should downgrade too.
     
  5. TFP

    TFP Dope Dope

    Messages:
    16,055
    I figured I'll start with the 100mbps, I can always upgrade after. But if I start with the gigabit I'll never downgrade.
     
  6. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

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    18,063
    That's a good point. I work from home so I'm online all the time, and we'll have 3 TVs in the house plus 2 iPads and 2 iPhones... I figure I might need it, I dunno.
     
  7. edoug

    edoug Member SoSH Member

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    1,195
    I think a data cap, if any, would be a bigger concern. All 7 devices won't be playing video at the same time will they? Any of your TVs 4K? Even then I don't think it's that much of a difference. Obviously I don't how much you'll be doing on your devices but 100 Mbps should be fine. But comfort of mind is important and should not be discounted. Either choice should be okay.
    Yeah 100 Mbps should be fine. I'd go withe the Roku stick in the spare room. It has a remote. If you have company staying in that spare room, with a chromecast you would need to install an app on their phone or tablet. Then use that as a remote. Just a bit of a hassle.
     
    #807 edoug, May 11, 2018
    Last edited: May 11, 2018
  8. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

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    18,063
    Thanks. Think I will start on the 100 and go from there
     
  9. Scott Cooper's Grand Slam

    Scott Cooper's Grand Slam Member SoSH Member

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    Too early to tell with Youtube. Haven't used it enough. Hulu's DVR worked pretty swell for me during the Olympics, but they had giant time blocks. I think you're on to something, though. I've never used a Tivo, but with a VCR you would say "record from 6 to 7:30" or whatever. It was fairly trivial to adjust up or down by a couple of minutes because it was based on the clock. With these services, you're recording a show and a time slot. So unless the timeslots are exact (like HBO, where shows say they'll air from 11:06-11:35 or whatever), you're likely to run into the clipping issue.

    I suppose the workaround would be to always record the thing that airs after the thing you want to watch?

    Fake edit: Maybe I'll report back this weekend. I have plans tonight so I've added Sale's start to the DVR. Will see if I actually watch it or just go to the box score.
     
  10. Joe Sixpack

    Joe Sixpack Well-Known Member Lifetime Member SoSH Member

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    It would be nice if these things just added 30 seconds or so extra by default, since it's usually just a very short amount at the end (for scripted shows) that gets cut off.

    Vue now asks you if you want to extend when you are recording sports, which is nice.
     
  11. edoug

    edoug Member SoSH Member

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    1,195
    Directv does this,not with seconds, so you should be able to do it on Directv Now when available. Maybe.
     
  12. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

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    18,063
    The other big question for me is whether YouTube TV is going to add NFL Network. If they don't add it by late August or early September I'll probably opt for Vue.
     
  13. Papelbon's Poutine

    Papelbon's Poutine Homeland Security SoSH Member

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    Could this be simply some kind of issue with the streaming service being a few seconds behind the live feed?
     
  14. timlinin8th

    timlinin8th Member SoSH Member

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    You could probably be on all of them at once and not even come close to using 1 Gbps, I don’t think people realize how much bandwidth that truly is. Medium sized businesses with 50+ employees don’t touch that. It’s just part of the collective conscience that “my internet is slow!” that leads to people paying for way more bandwidth than they ever really need, then run it on ancient hardware that can’t take advantage of it anyways (and is the reason for their poor performance in the first place). The money in those circumstances would be better spent on better devices vs. on bandwidth they will never use and flush that money into the pocket of ISPs.

    100Mbps is a decent starting point and you can bump from there. The most important thing to consider is concurrent connections more than total devices. You could have 10 devices but only using 3-5 at once, 100Mbps will be plenty.
     
  15. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

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    Thanks. Going with 100 to start

    Question though: does distance from the modem matter? Like will the gig perform better in the basement than the 100? Or irrelevant?
     
  16. Joe Sixpack

    Joe Sixpack Well-Known Member Lifetime Member SoSH Member

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    If you are using wifi then the bottleneck is going to be the signal strength of the wifi rather than the actual bandwidth of your internet service. So it will depend on how your house is set up. Gig vs 100mbit doesn't even really come into the equation there though for most typical usage.

    To put it into perspective - a Netflix HD 1080p stream uses about 3-5mbit of bandwidth. A 4k stream is 15-20.

    If you have 100mbit coming into the house, you are going to have plenty of capacity unless you have 10+ devices all streaming video, or downloading stuff at once.

    My household is pretty high usage - on a typical day my wife and kids will all be streaming stuff (probably 2 streams at once) and I'll be working from home using my voip phone for conference calls and downloading various large files off my work network. I just downgraded from 150mbit to 100mbit. I have not noticed a difference so far.
     
  17. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

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    Again thanks
     
  18. timlinin8th

    timlinin8th Member SoSH Member

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    Joe Sixpack beat me to responding, but is correct. All bandwidth that you pay for is what is delivered to the modem. How the modem delivers that bandwidth to your device is the biggest limitation. So if you have an older device that only supports 2.4GHz wifi, the best you will ever see your speeds to that device hit will be maybe 40-50Mbps, regardless of total modem bandwidth. That is why I said in those instances its better saving the money on bandwidth and buying better devices that support 5GHz wifi (which can often see over 300Mbps provided they are in decent range of the wifi).

    As you get further from the wifi transmitter (whether its a router or access point or whatever) then yes performance will be impacted, but changing overall bandwidth paid to your ISP won’t make a lick of difference in that.
     
  19. kobayashis bail bonds

    kobayashis bail bonds Member SoSH Member

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    49
    I'm using VUE in the Portland ME market, which doesn't carry ABC. Does anyone know if I have other streaming options for watching the NBA playoffs?
     
  20. kobayashis bail bonds

    kobayashis bail bonds Member SoSH Member

    Messages:
    49
    Oh, found an answer, will post for anyone else with the same question: ESPN app works here.
     
  21. Scott Cooper's Grand Slam

    Scott Cooper's Grand Slam Member SoSH Member

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    For whatever its worth, the performance differences between these services appear legit. I currently have both Youtube TV and Hulu with Live TV (I started the free week trial with Youtube for the Yankees series and my last billing cycle with Hulu ends soon). So just or comparison, I've been switching back and forth between the two services during the Celtics game.

    Same TV. Same general activity going on in the house. Same network connection. The Youtube broadcast is sharper, there's nary a stutter, and it's noticeably ahead of the Hulu broadcast.
     
  22. edoug

    edoug Member SoSH Member

    Messages:
    1,195
    Yeah, a bit lucky there. This is from the xfinity site but in this case it doesn't matter.
    https://www.xfinity.com/support/articles/sports-blackouts

    "The NBA Playoffs consists of four rounds of games. Games during the first two rounds may be televised locally, regionally or nationally. During these first two rounds, games televised nationally may be blacked out on the national network and shown on a local station or regional network. Games during the third round are shown exclusively on ESPN or TNT, and the NBA Finals are shown exclusively on ABC. Games in the final two rounds are not subject to any blackouts. The schedule is sometimes not determined until the last minute, as one day's schedule sometimes depends on the outcome of the previous day's game(s)."
     
  23. johnmd20

    johnmd20 voice of soccer Lifetime Member Gold Supporter SoSH Member

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    32,243
    Hulu is definitely less consistent than Amazon Video, Netflix, and YouTube Red. It goes down occasionally, compared to the others, which have gone down only once in the past 2-3 years.
     
  24. The Needler

    The Needler lurker

    Messages:
    781
    DirecTV Now is finally rolling out their DVR (20 hours free) to all customers.

     
  25. glennhoffmania

    glennhoffmania but still failing Lifetime Member SoSH Member

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    8,394,539
    I have a related question. My building is about to get wired for Fios. Because they didn't do the wiring when the building was built the process is a pain in the ass. At some point I'm going to get the wire in my apartment from the main hallway. If I then want to order the service they'll connect the wire to the ONT box. In the vague summary I received it says from that point the signal can be distributed wirelessly so it doesn't have to get hooked up to my main cable connection behind a closet, where I have no electrical outlet access. Does that mean that you can get tv wirelessly as well or are they only talking about internet? If the signal can be sent wirelessly to the cable boxes that would mean I don't have to hire an electrician to get a power supply into my coat closer, which would be a pretty extensive project. But no one seems to know if when they say wireless they're only referring to internet.
     
  26. timlinin8th

    timlinin8th Member SoSH Member

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    1,314
    Their tv boxes require coax. Anything after the ONT is just standard cable-style wiring at that point. Boxes, modems, etc.
     
  27. glennhoffmania

    glennhoffmania but still failing Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    Messages:
    8,394,539
  28. Scott Cooper's Grand Slam

    Scott Cooper's Grand Slam Member SoSH Member

    Messages:
    1,449
    An odd wrinkle in my cord-cutting journey.

    I was paying $55/month for Hulu with Live TV + the HBO add on.
    I switched to Youtube TV for $40/month. Gained NESN , lost HBO. Had planned to pay HBO directly for HBO Now. Then I started to wonder if there's a way to pay for access to same HBO that you get with a traditional subscription, or any of the other streaming services (that is, you get a feed of what's currently airing on each HBO channel. "Live" HBO shows like John Oliver and Vice News tonight air in the moment, instead of waiting for the next day in the app).

    I don't think there is, but Hulu had some decent retention offers. When I canceled my subscription, they offered the "Hulu with Limited Commercials" (that's their catalog of streaming shows, + originals like the Handmaid's Tale) for $7.99, and HBO for $4.99.

    The HBO price expires in 6 months, but for now that matches the DirecTV Now price and gets me Hulu's catalog and HBO for less than the price of just HBO.

    To recap, ~$55/mo in New England gets you local channels, major networks, NESN, the NFL network, HBO and Hulu's catalog. That should keep me happy for 6 months.
     
  29. Ale Xander

    Ale Xander Member SoSH Member

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    12,875
    is ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU included in the "major networks?"
     
  30. Scott Cooper's Grand Slam

    Scott Cooper's Grand Slam Member SoSH Member

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    1,449
    Yeah. I'm in one of the non-MA New England states, and Youtube.TV offers the following sports channels:

    • Big Ten Network
    • CBS Sports Network
    • ESPN
    • ESPN 2
    • ESPNU
    • ESPNNews
    • Fox Sports
    • Golf Channel (It has an NBC logo? I don't follow golf)
    • MLB Network
    • NBC Sports Boston
    • NESN
    • The Olympic Channel
    • The Tennis Channel
    Check availability by entering your zipcode on TV.Youtube.com.

    Ultimately it's not a huge cost savings. I pay ~$80/mo for not-great broadband and mandatory local phone service. So $140/mo is comparable (or much worse) than deals you could get from Comcast or Verizon or whatever. But if you can't get a good deal on a bundle from a major provider (I long for the major metropolitan area prices of $70/mo for 75 mbps down and 100 channels for $50-$80/mo), but it's not bad.

    Edit: Rip is correct below. Youtube.TV does not have NFL network. I got crossed up. I saw "NFL Live" and assumed it was on the network, not realizing that's an ESPN program.
     
    #830 Scott Cooper's Grand Slam, May 16, 2018 at 5:06 PM
    Last edited: May 17, 2018 at 7:16 PM
  31. The Allented Mr Ripley

    The Allented Mr Ripley holden Lifetime Member SoSH Member

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    11,127
    YoutubeTV doesn't have the NFL Network. If it did, I might have went with it instead of Vue (which still has a better selection of channels than YoutubeTV even beyond the NFL Network, but not so much so that I wouldn't have considered YoutubeTV when factoring in price, user interface, and DVR capability).
     
  32. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

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    18,063
    Yeah this is the biggest holdup for me. I don't think I really will care until the fall, so I am hoping they add it between now and then. It wasn't that long ago that they added TNT and MLB and NBA networks, so I am hopeful...
     
  33. TFP

    TFP Dope Dope

    Messages:
    16,055
    To follow up on this, by going with FiOS I’m forced to go with their proprietary modem/router (which is annoying). I assume this modem will work good enough for me? If I have to extend/enhance my signal down in the basement - is that doable? Any recommendations on the best way to do so?
     
  34. The Allented Mr Ripley

    The Allented Mr Ripley holden Lifetime Member SoSH Member

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    11,127
    I have FiOS at 75/75Mbps and streaming Vue has been smooth for me*, even in my basement... I have a powered Roku Streaming Stick+ down there, it doesn't just plug into the TV's HDMI port, it has a USB/AC cord as well to extend the wireless reception range by 4x. I'd recommend that or the Ultra for a basement TV if you're going the Roku route.

    My kids are often streaming Netflix on their tablets or the XBox while I'm watching something else on my TV as well, and there's been no lag.

    *Once in a blue moon I might get a slight pause/hiccup while waiting for a channel to load, but it's minimal. But I have no idea if that's to be attributed to the modem/internet speed, the Roku, or Vue.
     
    #834 The Allented Mr Ripley, May 17, 2018 at 10:59 AM
    Last edited: May 17, 2018 at 11:10 AM
  35. gtmtnbiker

    gtmtnbiker Member SoSH Member

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    You are forced to use their router only if you are getting FIOS TV. Even then, there's apparently a way to have your router be the primary and the FIOS router be secondary.

    The other thing I noticed is that if you're ordering new service, decline their router which costs $149 I think. The tech will give you their router for free if you get the gigabit service.
     
  36. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

    Messages:
    18,063
    Talk to me more about the router. I have installation next week, should I be getting my own router? I figured theirs would be optimized for their network but I don't know much about these things.
     
  37. TFP

    TFP Dope Dope

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    16,055
    Hmm, that's not what it said when I was ordering. I'm getting internet only, and they forced me to get their modem/router. Is it an option to get a different one? I'd much rather do that than buy theirs for $150 if I can avoid it but there was no way to actually order the service without getting the modem.

    Edit: And the installation is tomorrow, so it might be too late.

    Edit again: And if so - what router should I get?
     
    #837 TFP, May 17, 2018 at 2:48 PM
    Last edited: May 17, 2018 at 2:58 PM
  38. TFP

    TFP Dope Dope

    Messages:
    16,055
    I just did some googling and it seems that it it's definitely possible. I'll let the installation happen tomorrow and choose the renting option, then once I'm settled in I'll switch over to a new router and return their router. Sweet!
     
  39. Joe Sixpack

    Joe Sixpack Well-Known Member Lifetime Member SoSH Member

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    3,420
    You can get your own router no problem. You are doing it the right way. Choose the rental option then just return the rental after installing your own since their techs won't install the service with your router.
     
  40. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

    Messages:
    18,063
    Ok so which router?

    My setup will be:

    I have 3 floors in the house:
    Basement - I will have a TV down there in my workout area
    Main Floor - router will be in my office, which is connected to a family room that will have a TV. There will also be another TV room on the other side of the house
    Upstairs - will not have any TVs, just some occasional iPad / iPhone use
     
  41. NortheasternPJ

    NortheasternPJ Member SoSH Member

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    11,807
    I love my Eero with one beacon.
     
  42. Scott Cooper's Grand Slam

    Scott Cooper's Grand Slam Member SoSH Member

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    Thanks Rip, you're right. I edited my original post.
     
  43. Papelbon's Poutine

    Papelbon's Poutine Homeland Security SoSH Member

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    14,881
    You have to wait until next day for HBO Now? HBO Go, a show is on either concurrently or immediately after it ends.
     
  44. GreyisGone

    GreyisGone Member SoSH Member

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    1,310
    Nah HBO Now puts up the shows at the start time. So you can actually be ahead of live if you skip the Previously On piece.
     
  45. Scott Cooper's Grand Slam

    Scott Cooper's Grand Slam Member SoSH Member

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    1,449
    That's not entirely true.

    For their scripted shows this is a non-issue, but the "reality" stuff airs later. I wanted to watch John Oliver at 11. But I can wait until Monday nights.
     
  46. Papelbon's Poutine

    Papelbon's Poutine Homeland Security SoSH Member

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    14,881
    So then it’s different, because I watch John Oliver at 11:30 on hbo go. Or did. I’m actually turning in my xfinity box tomorrow I kept it an extra month while I test ran the options for streaming.

    Honestly makes do difference for me unless it impacted GoT. Anything gross can wait until Monday.
     
  47. timlinin8th

    timlinin8th Member SoSH Member

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    1,314
    The mesh network products are quickly becoming the standard, and eero got in on the ground floor and have it pretty figured out. Most of the others you still hear about cloud based issues.
     
  48. gtmtnbiker

    gtmtnbiker Member SoSH Member

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    I’m not a router expert but I have the Netgear R8000 router. Very reliable, no issues. I think any router over $200 will be better than the Actiontec router. I do have the Verizon Gigabit router that was given to me for free by the tech. I do remember when I ordered the service, I was able to decline the router and say that I would provide my own. I had to accept a waiver about some potential performance issue but I forget the details.

    The only advantage the Verizon router has is the MOCA (multimedia over coax) which is needed for their settop box so it can download the TV guide data.
     
  49. foulkehampshire

    foulkehampshire hillbilly suburbanite SoSH Member

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    5,025
    Yeah, you don't need MoCA if you're running an internet only plan for FIOS. However, you do have to go through the pain of having VZ techs switch the WAN output from the ONT from coax to Ethernet. I recommend that everybody does this regardless of whether or not they use cable/stb features - especially if you're a new customer. Don't let the techs hop onto old existing coax...you'll bleed RF from sub-par barrel connectors and most of that stuff isn't shielded up to par now.
     
  50. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

    Messages:
    18,063
    Can you please explain in more layman’s terms? To paraphrase Michael Scott... explain it to me like I’m 10... actually, like I’m 5.

    [​IMG]
     
    #850 tims4wins, May 20, 2018 at 6:05 PM
    Last edited: May 21, 2018 at 9:52 AM

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