Attention owners of Pioneer TiVos

Apparently there was a class action lawsuit – I had the notice delivered on my TiVo today. This is the PDF the message says to look at.

Personally I do NOT plan to file a claim, I am satisfied with the product and I think this lawsuit is – well, pretty damn idiotic. Some people will sue over anything I guess. Geez.

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  • cassiusdrow

    The suit alleges the Pioneer TiVos provide unsatisfactory picture quality, don’t record as much programming as advertised to the hard drive or a DVD, and take longer to record a DVD than advertised.

    I bought my Pioneer 810 after the software upgrades for picture quality were developed, so I can’t comment on how bad the quality was before the upgrade. But after the upgrade I find the picture quality to superior to the regular TiVo Series 2 I have, and this is on a 58″ HDTV. Maybe they are comparing the quality to other (non-TiVo based) DVD burners.

    As far as the amount of hours the Pioneer TiVo records, I agree that their marketing speak is a little misleading. It has always annoyed me that TiVo call it “an 80 hour TiVo”, when it is actually a 23 to 80 hour model. And the Pioneer 810 is a 13 to 80 hour model. Is this enough to warrant a class action lawsuit? Not in my mind.

    A full DVD is recorded in about 20 minutes. How is that a problem?

    If Pioneer hadn’t already thrown in the towel with TiVo based products, this would certainly cause them to consider dropping the line. To me this is the biggest lose here – the Pioneer 810 I have has a much better build quality than the regular Series 2 I have, and I’ve heard the Humax and Toshiba models are even worse than the TiVo branded models. TiVo may have lost Pioneer as a manufacturer forever.

  • megazone

    I like my Pioneer 810H quite a bit. Yes, early on image quality wasn’t as good, but I still felt that ‘High’ on the Pioneer was comparable to ‘Best’ on normal units, and ‘Extreme’ (aka Best) on the Pioneer was better. The recording time claims – eh, not a big deal. *ALL* DVRs are marketed that way, and it is always ‘up to X hours’. But they also said not as much time as claimed on a DVD – excuse me? They record exsactly as much as claimed, period.

    I actually have a Toshiba TX-20 sitting here along with my 810H and I don’t think the build quality is poor. It actually has features the Pioneer lacks, being a newer generation – I like the front panel jacks, and the FireWire input is a nice feature. The display on the Pioneer is still better – but they run basically the same software so that’s a wash.

  • krellis

    If you’re sure you don’t want to be part of the class, follow the instructions on pages 6 and 7 of that PDF for opting out of the class – if 5% or more of the class opts out, the settlement can be pulled. Probably not likely to happen, but it could be worth a try.

  • buran

    I do agree that the “hour” rating is a bit confusing, and clarifying it in the marketing stuff would be a good idea (make it clearer that the rated capacity is at the lowest recording quality and that you’ll get a range from X to Y depending on which setting you choose). However, it wasn’t hard for me to figure out — but I work with video compression at work so I knew about how it’d work beforehand.

    That said, I’m not sure why this is worthy of a lawsuit …

    My “209-hour” tivo actually gets something less than that but I’m not sure what its capacity is when set to “medium”.

  • cassiusdrow

    I agree: High on Pioneer = Best on other Tivo units, etc. I record everything at Extreme because it is indistinguishable from the straight cable signal on my 58″ HDTV. My biggest issue with the normal Series 2 TiVos was the picture quality on an HDTV. The Pioneer brings it to an acceptable level. I did have to upgrade the hard drive as the 810 only gets 13 hours at extreme. After a 300gb upgrade it gets about 60 hours at extreme.

    I had seen some posts on the TiVo community from people who had both Pioneer and Humax units complaining about the Humax build quality compared to the Pioneer. Now that you mention it, I don’t think the complaints included the Toshiba units.

    Have you noticed any difference in the picture quality between the Pioneer and the Toshiba? I’ve see complaints about crushed blacks on the Toshiba and Humax units.

  • zqfmbg

    Class action suits always annoyed the tar out of me because of how they end. If you have a monetary settlement, the attorneys representing the plaintiffs take a huge fat chunk of it, then divide it up among a large number, thus resulting in wonderful things like a 50 cent check or, in the case of the recent RIAA price-fixing litigation, a check that doesn’t even cover the cost of one CD. It doesn’t make one whit of difference to everyone except the lawyers, who profit handsomely.

  • stile99

    Go ahead Maurice, sue me. Ya retard. Let’s go through the claims one by one, in exactly the same way the judge should have, but didn’t.

    1> Picture quality. As noted not only here but IN the freaking lawsuit, is not an issue.

    2> Do not record as much programming as advertised. Well, ok, he has a point here. Of course, they record MORE than advertised, but he doesn’t want THAT little factoid to leak out, does he? My 60 hour box can record over 63 hours. Not sure about the 80 hour, I upgraded it, and there is no advertisement for a 500 hour TiVo. But with two 250 gig drives in there, they could advertise 550 hours and it would still be below the actual number.

    3> Takes longer to record to a DVD than advertised. Hmmm…this seems a little hard to quantify. The lawsuit doesn’t display any numbers that I can see. How’s he going to prove this?

    It goes on to say that the ambulance chasers he hired believe these claims have merit. Ummm…yeah, right. First of all, I doubt you understand the claims. Secondly, you ‘believe’ pretty much anything you’re told to believe for $425,000.

    Seems an awful lot of trouble to go to to get a 10% discount on Pioneer products. Just shop around, could get a better deal than that by shopping smart (no, not at S-Mart).

    I would REALLY love to see 5% opt out and this ‘tard get stuck with the bill.

  • megazone

    The Toshiba and Humax units are identical – different faceplates is all (and different size drives, Humax has 40 & 80, Toshiba has 120 & 160).

    I haven’t really noticed any picture differences, but I’ve never done an A/B comparison and I don’t have an HDTV (yet) to get the ‘pure’ picture, etc. I’m using S-Video now for my feed, when I get my HDTV I’ll go component.

  • anonymous

    On August 17, 2005 the court granted final approval to resolve to class action suite.