DirecTV DVR Resolution

I just realized that I had never posted the final resolution to the DirecTV saga, a dramatic presentation in 3 parts.

Part One: Calling DirecTV numerous times and finally getting them to agree to send a technician to replace the unit, who showed up almost an hour late and without a replacement unit. So he said he would come back the next day, which would then be…

Part Two: A little over an hour after he had said he would arrive, someone from the technician’s scheduling company called to say that no, he couldn’t be there that afternoon and that he could maybe come out the next day. So then we had…

Part Three: In which my wife watched the DirecTV service technician pull up into our driveway and spend the next 30 minutes smoking cigarettes and drinking soda until she finally went outside to see what was going on, at which point the technician said, “oh, I didn’t think you were home.” An astute observation made without the need to actually ring the doorbell or call our home phone – who knew our technician was a precognitive mentalist?

At the resolution of Part Three we did actually replace our old DVR with a new one which seems to be functioning OK. To recap, my old HD20 was periodically freezing, not powering on at all and sometimes just showing a white screen (with audio) when playing HD content either off of the air or recorded on the DVR.

At this point I shall post my in-depth analysis of moving from my old, standard-definition TiVo powered DirecTV DVR to the new HD DVR.

Crap.

The TiVo unit was so much more user-friendly that it’s hard to describe the difference. Like a lot of well designed products, TiVo just worked. The HD20 DVR that we now have is more like taking my recording future into my own hands when creating a season pass…will it really record what I want? What if it changes times? What if it runs over a few minutes, like Lost seems to do all the time? What happens if a new episode shows up in the guide as a repeat, or vice versa? And where, oh where, are my suggestions?

I feel very, very lucky if I actually get the things recorded from DirecTV that I actually expect to see. Maybe I’m just being too critical, but it’s really made me rethink staying with DirecTV beyond the length of my new service contract. In retrospect I should have not stayed with them at all – to go to HD I probably should have gotten some CableCARDs from Time Warner and then installed a HD TiVo, but such is life.

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