Amazon drops price on TiVo Series3

It must be a recent change, I just noticed that Amazon has dropped their price on the TiVo Series3 to $606.95. That’s the second best price I know of, currently – the Store still has them for $599.99. – with shipping. (Yes, I get a referral credit for the Amazon purchases.) It looks like the S3 might be settling in around $600 as the generally available price – Abe’s of Maine also has them for $599.99 – but shipping is not included. The price coming down is definitely a good thing – the lower it drops, the more people will buy.

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  • cambler

    Okay, here’s my question could could net you a referral through Amazon – my cable company, Millennium Digital Media (in Western Washington, near Seattle) is clueless.

    I’m the only customer with customer-owned equipment. I bought a Motorola DCP-501 about two years ago so I could use my Series 2 with the serial port tuning, as Millennium’s GI boxes don’t have the serial port. It took me the better part of 6 months to get Millennium to stop sending the software update that disabled the serial port on my box (the update/activation does this on GI boxes). I actually had to get the county cable ombudsman involved, because they were sending updates that disabled the controls on my box.

    To this day, I remain the only customer with my own equipment.

    For the holidays last year, I bought the family a very nice flat-screen HD television. Millennium gave me an HD cable box, and that setup has no Tivo (as opposed to three other rooms in the house that all have Series 2 boxen). The HD cable box sucks, of course. I have no confidence that it’ll work with a Series 3, and I never want to use IR tuning again.

    So how does the Series 3 tune? Can I use it without a cable box and still get the premium channels? Will my cable company give me another 6 months of torture getting it working, or are things more rational now?

    Where can I educate myself on this before I purchase and pick a fight?

  • credendovides

    Sounds good to me. I plan on buying one soonish. Just got HDTV, now need HD cable to go with it and a TiVo. Too bad the offer to transfer lifetime service is over.

  • credendovides

    If the HD channels are in the clear, you can just plug it in to get part of what you could watch. Otherwise, for things like HBO, you need a Cable Card, which cable companies are required to provide. (Unfortunately they keep getting the deadline for when they are required to provide them, currently it is July 1, 2007, so if your cable co is one of the stubborn ones they may not have it yet.) A cable card is something they provide you so it works with their system, and they can’t send any updates that effect your hardware.

  • credendovides

    Oh, and for TiVo, you probably need two Cable Cards to record two things at once.

  • megazone

    Ugh, that sounds like hell.

    The Series3 can tune antenna input – analog (NTSC) or digital (ATSC), and cable. It handles analog cable like anything else. Digital cable it needs CableCARD to work correctly – and, from the sound of it, I wouldn’t be surprised if your local cable company doesn’t support them. While they’re mandated by the FCC, small cable operators can get waivers that allow them not to bother. The Series3 can tune *unencrypted* digital cable channels without the CableCARDs, but there is no official support – no guide data, etc. So you need to find the right channels to tune, then recordings can only be done by time and channel.

    As for info – see for a Series3 FAQ and Review.

  • megazone

    You’re conflating things. Cable companies have been required to provide CableCARDs for a while now – unless they have a waiver that allows them not to.

    July, 2007 is the deadline for cable MSOs to stop shipping cable boxes that do not use CableCARD. They have to switch over to using CableCARD themselves for everything – the idea being if they have to eat their own dog food, they’ll do a better job and the general support level for CableCARD will improve. Again, unless they apply for and are granted a waiver.

    I believe there are also blanket waivers for MSOs smaller than X number of users.

  • megazone

    While the offer is officially over, you can still try it. People have reported receiving the transfer since the offer expired, just by calling.