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Thread: NZ TiVo Experience

  1. #1
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    Talking NZ TiVo Experience

    Well, I now have my TiVo, despite dire warnings from the Telecom shop that it would not work unless I sign up for Telecom Broadband and that they would not give any refunds if I change my mind...

    Here's my findings so far on the NZ TiVo Experience.

    Pre-Sales: Pretty clueless
    I suppose this is to be expected, with it being a new product, but I could do without the FUD over ISP choice. A clear explanations would be better.

    Value: Excellent
    Getting the wireless adapter and full PC software for the NZ$920 price tag is great. It was a bit unclear as to how you get the software at first, and the sales people didnt know. It turns out that once you have registered on the TiVo website, it gives you your activation keys and the download link for the software.
    It would have been nice to get an HDMI cable with the box, and the ariel lead was the wrong gender, but that was no great problem.
    It comes with a fair quality component video cable (decent length), fair quality AV cable (decent length), ariel cable (female, decent length), ethernet cable (very short), and of course a decent length power lead.

    Installation: Easy
    Configuring the wireless network and everything was very easy, even with our password-protected WEP on the home network. Installing the home networking was easy (once I had the codes and had enabled networking on the TiVo itself) but it will not work until your TiVo has fully updated that night, unless...
    To speed things up, after all was done I forced a connect to TiVo (to update the software). This then required a reboot, which installed the new software and rebooted again. Once this was done, a final forced connect to TiVo updated it properly, and the networking all worked.
    TiVo Genie (control the Tivo via the internet) works well but you need to configure it online AFTER all the home networking is fully configured and working.

    Premium Services: Don't know
    We have Orcon as our ISP, as as advertised, the premium services menu item just gives 'cannot contact server'.
    As far as I can see, the Premium Services basically amount to video rental on demand. The prices seem fair, and you cant beat the convenience, but we never rent videos anyway. No loss to me.

    TiVo Service: Good, but a few problems
    The service is all I expected, apart from the lack of scheduling data for Prime. Instead, you just get a list of entries saying 'contact prime to ask for this'. Probably they want us to pressure Prime to release the guide data to TiVo.
    I notice with this version, you can no longer choose a recording quality for your recording - it is always high quality HD or SD depending on the broadcast. This is a bit annoying for people wanting to make the most of the disk space.
    The TiVo video out mode defaults to 720p; its best to change it to 'Native' if your TV supports all modes.
    I also had problems in making the TiVo remote support our TV (Acer). It knows the brand, but the codes produced don't control our TV. I'm hoping for updates in the future...

    More when more things crop up. However I can definitely confirm that everything bar the pay-tv-on-demand works via Orcon.
    Last edited by CheshireCat; 08-11-2009 at 04:11 PM. Reason: Fix details on included cables
    Steve Shipway
    Auckland, New Zealand
    2x S3 TiVo HD 320GB (FreeView) - Orcon Internet
    1x S3 TiVo HD 320GB - Power supply reparied, see how I did it here
    UK S1 TiVo - Needs conversion to TivoNZ - For sale

  2. #2
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    Smile

    Updates:

    Having found a very good FAQ for the Series3HD here, I discover that the recommended way to configure your TiVo video-out is to set it to 1080i Fixed rather than Native if your TV supports it (the default here seems to be 720i fixed). So I'm going to try that.

    It is worth noting that you need to se the 'Convert Dolby to PCM' option in the settings (not on by default) to get the TiVo 'bing' to work on Dolby channels. As we have no Dolby box anyway there's no loss to us.

    The 30sec advert-skip mod seems to work as well.

    The 'Now Playing' screen lists the recordins with subfolders; however subfolders are only created for Wishlists, Suggestions, and Recently Deleted - you cant use them to manually organise your files althought the FAQ I linked to above has some nice suggestions on how to make custom wishlists to achieve this.

    The 'Tivo Genie' Internet web interface has successfully scheduled my new Season Pass as requested, taking about 10mins to action the request, so this is another thing that does not require Telecom broadband to work fully.

    I should have been more clear about about the updates required to make the Home Networking work. You need to force a connection on the TiVo several times until the status says 'Awaiting Reboot'. Then you tell it to reboot (but not resetting to default settings of course) and once it is back to life, you need to reboot your PC which is running the Home Networking.

    Still having problems getting the remote to play with my Acer TV set. However, this page has some instructions on how to set up the remote in these circumstances, so I'll try it later.

    Another note: the telnet port 31339 for remote automation is confirmed to be enabled on the NZ TiVo using the current software. This is what you'd expect, since it apparently now works on the Oz TiVos, but its worth knowing in case you want to use one of those nifty iPhone apps to control your TiVo.
    Last edited by CheshireCat; 08-11-2009 at 04:08 PM.
    Steve Shipway
    Auckland, New Zealand
    2x S3 TiVo HD 320GB (FreeView) - Orcon Internet
    1x S3 TiVo HD 320GB - Power supply reparied, see how I did it here
    UK S1 TiVo - Needs conversion to TivoNZ - For sale

  3. #3
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    My remote is now working with my TV after following the instructions on the link above. This went fairly smoothly.

    After more testing of the Home Networking, I've identified a few issues.

    Firstly, although I can use my TiVo to access pictures, music and video on the home PC, I cannot do this in the other direction. The problem seems to be that the 'Media access key' has still not installed from the central servers - the info screen reports 'not yet available'. A few forced connections have not resulted in the key arriving, so this can wait until tomorrow, by which time we should have a media access key reported.

    Secondly, although I can pull various format video and audio from my PC, it appears that the Captions/Subtitle streams are omitted during the transfer. We have a multi-lingual household, so I have several recordings with subtitle streams (MKV or OGG Format) and these transfer fine but the subtitles are dropped. Its true that TiVo make no claim that MKV format is supported so I can't complain too loudly but I was hoping it would work since the video and audio come over correctly.

    I have yet to try moving a recording with subtitles in the other direction. Possibly there is a different subtitle format I could use that would work.
    Steve Shipway
    Auckland, New Zealand
    2x S3 TiVo HD 320GB (FreeView) - Orcon Internet
    1x S3 TiVo HD 320GB - Power supply reparied, see how I did it here
    UK S1 TiVo - Needs conversion to TivoNZ - For sale

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by CheshireCat View Post
    The 30sec advert-skip mod seems to work as well.
    Really??? I did not test this when I was playing with the NZ software. It is still locked out on the Australian 11.3a software. I'm very surprised TVNZ have allowed this.

    What software version is now reported on your TiVo, and do you know what was the original version reported out of the box before you forced the updates?

    Quote Originally Posted by CheshireCat View Post
    I have yet to try moving a recording with subtitles in the other direction. Possibly there is a different subtitle format I could use that would work.
    I think streambaby worked with subtitles, but TiVo Killed streambaby compatability when they added H.264 support for NZ.

    Peter.
    Please search this forum and our Website for your TiVo questions before starting a new thread. Thanks!

  5. #5
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    I did the SPS30S code for the 30s skip and it seemed to work when I tested. More tests today to see if I was mistaken... I'll also post the software version.
    [edit]
    After more testing, I see you're right - it doesn't work. It seems the button skips forward ot the next tick mark after all - Im used to the old series 1 where it skipped to the very end and so I must have had a nearby tick mark and thought it skipped forward 30s. My mistake... pity, its a useful feature.
    [end edit]

    The MAK appeared on my TiVo later last night and all transfers now work as expected, with transfers in both directions. However, I also disabled the 'Power saving' mode on my PC wireless network card which not only helped this to work but also fixed a couple of other network-server issues I had - it seems that it cannot hear broadcasts from other devices (the TiVo, and my network scanner) when the wireless net card goes into power save mode, and some permanent links (as used by the TiVo desktop software) time out. I'd suggest people check to see if their PC network card has a power save mode, and if so, disable it.

    I'm investigating the XML interface on port 443 now, in order to make a simple 'Disk space usage split' graph and stats via the MRTG application. I wonder if there's an undocumented command API in here as well?

    Steve
    Last edited by CheshireCat; 09-11-2009 at 04:05 PM. Reason: correct missapprehension after further testing
    Steve Shipway
    Auckland, New Zealand
    2x S3 TiVo HD 320GB (FreeView) - Orcon Internet
    1x S3 TiVo HD 320GB - Power supply reparied, see how I did it here
    UK S1 TiVo - Needs conversion to TivoNZ - For sale

  6. #6
    Secondly, although I can pull various format video and audio from my PC, it appears that the Captions/Subtitle streams are omitted during the transfer. We have a multi-lingual household, so I have several recordings with subtitle streams (MKV or OGG Format) and these transfer fine but the subtitles are dropped. Its true that TiVo make no claim that MKV format is supported so I can't complain too loudly but I was hoping it would work since the video and audio come over correctly.

    QUOTE]

    Hi Steve

    Got my TiVo up and running however I can only see video files with a .avi extn. If I put a .mkv and a .avi directly in the "My TiVo Recordings Folder" I can only see the .avi in both the now playing list on the TiVo and the TiVo desktop. Is there anything else you may have done. Are you running the default "Bonjour" server software. I see there is an option to run TiVo Beacon?

    Any help appreciated.

  7. #7
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    I'm running all the TiVo desktop with the default installation parameters. Although you can rename a .mkv to .avi and it will still work, I haven't done this and I can see .mkv videos appearing in the list in the TiVo Desktop.

    However I have previously assosciated the .mkv extension with Windows Media Player - it is possible that TiVo Desktop uses this assosciation to identify eligible files to transfer?
    Steve Shipway
    Auckland, New Zealand
    2x S3 TiVo HD 320GB (FreeView) - Orcon Internet
    1x S3 TiVo HD 320GB - Power supply reparied, see how I did it here
    UK S1 TiVo - Needs conversion to TivoNZ - For sale

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by CheshireCat View Post
    I did the SPS30S code for the 30s skip and it seemed to work when I tested. More tests today to see if I was mistaken... I'll also post the software version.
    [edit]
    After more testing, I see you're right - it doesn't work. It seems the button skips forward ot the next tick mark after all - Im used to the old series 1 where it skipped to the very end and so I must have had a nearby tick mark and thought it skipped forward 30s. My mistake... pity, its a useful feature.
    [end edit]
    It should not skip to the next tick mark, unless you are already fast forwarding. The behavior should be the same as your S1 without 30 Sec Skip enabled. Pressing the skip button skips to the end.

    Could you please also let us know what software version you are currently running.

    Peter.
    Please search this forum and our Website for your TiVo questions before starting a new thread. Thanks!

  9. #9
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    A quick hobble into the sitting room reveals the current NZ TiVo software version (after the last update) to be:

    11.3a-01-2-663

    Unfortunately Im not sure what it started on as I didn't make a note.

    I'm not going to try any of the SPS codes again, too risky until its all settled down and software updates probably affect them too.
    Steve Shipway
    Auckland, New Zealand
    2x S3 TiVo HD 320GB (FreeView) - Orcon Internet
    1x S3 TiVo HD 320GB - Power supply reparied, see how I did it here
    UK S1 TiVo - Needs conversion to TivoNZ - For sale

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Location
    Hamilton, NZ
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    Quote Originally Posted by CheshireCat View Post
    ... the current NZ TiVo software version (after the last update) to be:

    11.3a-01-2-663

    Unfortunately Im not sure what it started on as I didn't make a note.
    I believe before the update it is identical except lacking the 'a'

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