Saturday, April 23, 2011

I finally went digital

The question is, was it worth it? It certainly shouldn't have been as difficult a process as it turned out to be. But ultimately I did get to watch tonight's premiere of Doctor Who, so it all worked out okay. I do, however, find myself much less enamored with both TiVo and my cable company than I was when the process started.

We talked to the people at our cable company and told them what equipment we had, told them we want to upgrade to digital cable and asked what we needed to do. They insisted we needed a cable box. I set up an appointment to get the installation done the following Monday, this was last Thursday. The guy comes out, and after an hour fiddling with my cable wires and TiVo, realizes that I can't use a digital box with a TiVo DVR. He takes the box in to install a cable card only to realize that my Series 2 doesn't have a slot for a cable card. He brings it back to me and tells me that I will have to upgrade my TiVo or get one of their DVRs. Okay, partially my fault. I should have remembered that my TiVo was not digitial compatible.

Enter TiVo. I go online to the TiVo store to upgrade and get a new TiVo that will accept a cable card. I order a TiVo Premiere and transfer my service to the new box. It says that it will ship the same day and that I will have 60 days (I think) of service on my old box in order to get my new box set up. It even says I will be able to transfer my season passes to the new box. Great right? Wrong!

I'm supposed to get an email when the box ships, but I don't get one. 24 hours later I still have not received an email saying it has shipped. So I call customer service. They say that there was a technical problem with the previous days orders: they shipped, but the emails weren't sent out. Okay, great! Again, wrong! It didn't ship on Monday, it shipped late afternoon on Tuesday. Still no major problem, it should still get to me before the weekend. And, great (for real this time) it actually does. It get to me after 5 pm on Thursday. My cable company is going to be open on Good Friday, so I'm still in luck.

From what I can gather looking at the instruction a cable card is no big deal to install, so I ask if they will just give me a card to install myself. Well, of course not, they have to do it themselves. At a cost of either $50 or possibly $60, I was told two different amounts by two different people on two different days. I was also told two different amounts for how much the service would cost per month. I still don't know how much I'll be paying. . .

Finally, after the cable people had the TiVo for about 5 and a half hours, I got it back and could bring it home and set it up. I get it set up and there are no directions for how to hook the darn thing up with a DVD player. I contact TiVo again, and they tell me that it can only be hooked up to one output source at a time, which I take to mean that I would have to disconnect it from my TV to connect it to my DVD player.

I did finally get everything connected and working properly - the TiVo connects to the DVD player, which then connects to the TV. I try going online to transfer my season passes from the old box to the new, and you guessed it, I can't! The only box it shows for me is the new one. So I have to manually reset all of my season passes. Well, the ones that I can set, because, of course, not all shows that I have season passes for are going to be showing in the next two weeks. So now I will have to remember to reset them before the shows come back on in the summer or fall.

All is fine and good, and my Now Playing shows are transferred and my Season Passes are set. But it was WAY more expensive and WAY more of a headache than I ever anticipated when I set out on my quest to watch the season premiere of Doctor Who. All I've got to say now is that it better be a damn good season of Doctor Who!