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Help me Cut the Cable

Old 12-31-16, 02:48 PM
  #1  
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Help me Cut the Cable

...or more accurately, Ditch the Dish.

Right now I have Dish, and 1.5mbps (!!!!) internet from AT&T. Two TVs in the house: living room, and master bedroom. No smartphones (or desire for them).

Where I want to get is:
* Better internet (15-25mbps)
* No satellite or cable
* Netflix
* Occasional other month-to-month streaming for binging selected shows (Hulu, etc)
* A Roku device to facilitate streaming to TV
* OTA HD for local networks (reception is supposed to be pretty good around here)
* 2-3 channel DVR for OTA HD
* Sports?
* Less monthly cost than I'm paying now
* Only a couple hundred up-front cost
* No illegal stealing of content.

Researching internet options, it looks like the 1.5mbps is all I can get from AT&T at my address, so it seems a no-brainer to switch to Cox 15mbps for $50-60/mo (not much more than currently for AT&T).

I'm hoping replacing the monthly Dish cost with Netflix, and occasional temporary other streaming services, will mean lower recurring cost.

Any recommendations on how to set up/buy a DVR for HD OTA? Simple and Tablo look like the main off-the-shelf options out there, pretty small monthly fee for the optional premium program guide.

What about a diy dvr? I run only Ubuntu at home already, does that mean I likely have the capability to pull off a DIY Myst media server?
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Old 12-31-16, 03:20 PM
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Well I've been off cable for years.
Unlimited internet.
Put a HTPC to my 50" plasma...wireless keyboard,mouse,Denon receiver 7.1,Frame interpolation software
Run it from my Lazyboy.
Got a free VPN for content not available in my country.
Youtube covers a lot.
I can play any content.

Last edited by Jazzba; 12-31-16 at 06:53 PM. Reason: Typo
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Old 12-31-16, 06:31 PM
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I just get over the air filled in with a couple of shows from Amazon.

I use NextPVR as my DVR and Kodi as my multi-media software. Kodi comes with addons to get ABC, CBS and NBC national shows on line for free.
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Old 12-31-16, 06:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Jazzba View Post
Well I've been off cable for years.
Unlimited internet.
Put a HTTP to my 50" plasma...wireless keyboard,mouse,Denon receiver 7.1,Frame interpolation software
Run it from my Lazyboy.
Got a free VPN for content not available in my country.
Youtube covers a lot.
I can play any content.
Source/provider of your Unlimited Internet?
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Old 12-31-16, 06:49 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Source/provider of your Unlimited Internet?
I am in Canada......Distributel....a re-seller of Rogers
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Old 12-31-16, 06:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Jazzba View Post
I am in Canada......Distributel....a re-seller of Rogers
Is this another way of stating that you get Internet service through a DSL telephone line rather than a cable line? If so what is the advantage?
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Old 12-31-16, 07:02 PM
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Switch to Cox and then check out Sling (if the OTA doesn't work out for you).
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Old 12-31-16, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Is this another way of stating that you get Internet service through a DSL telephone line rather than a cable line? If so what is the advantage?
Cable....Rogers does phone and cable
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Old 12-31-16, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
Switch to Cox and then check out Sling (if the OTA doesn't work out for you).
Sling has deals where they give away Roku devices for streaming when the customer pays in advance for 3 months a $20/month plan including ESPN and ESPN2. They gave me a streaming Roku Stick and a Roku2 player.
I'm watching the playoff games now on ESPN/Sling through the Roku2 feed to my TV.
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Old 12-31-16, 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Jazzba View Post
Cable....Rogers does phone and cable
Then you have cut out the cable company to get cable service from another tel-communication company; IOW, not cut the cable?
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Old 12-31-16, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Then you have cut out the cable company to get cable service from another tel-communication company; IOW, not cut the cable?
Not cable TV...cable internet.
To promote competition the government mandated a portion of the bandwidth be made available to new companies.
To attract business...unlimited was made available since it was not available with Rogers.
Unlimited meaning a fair share with some throttling if you became a data pig.
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Old 01-01-17, 08:37 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
Switch to Cox and then check out Sling (if the OTA doesn't work out for you).
Took a look at sling, I don't see CBS or ABC on there. And (probably not surprisingly) they split all the best channels between their two $20/25 packages, which encourages to get the total package for $40.

Is Sling live-stream only, or is it everything on demand?
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Old 01-01-17, 08:40 AM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Sling has deals where they give away Roku devices for streaming when the customer pays in advance for 3 months a $20/month plan including ESPN and ESPN2. They gave me a streaming Roku Stick and a Roku2 player.
I'm watching the playoff games now on ESPN/Sling through the Roku2 feed to my TV.
As I understand it, Roku is not about content, but more about convenience, kind of like an aggregator, plus a nice little remote. Since it is not a recurring cost, and even the upfront is pretty cheap (or free possibly as you note), I like the idea a lot.
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Old 01-01-17, 08:52 AM
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Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
I just get over the air filled in with a couple of shows from Amazon.

I use NextPVR as my DVR and Kodi as my multi-media software. Kodi comes with addons to get ABC, CBS and NBC national shows on line for free.
Hmmm, I'm not quite clear on the distinction between NextPVR and Kodi; Kodi is the player, and Next is the recorder? But you can navigate the recordings Next has made, and when you select one, then Kodi is the backend that plays it?

Anyways, NextPVR is windoze, so I'd be looking for a linux alternative. Kodi does linux, but taking a look at the addons listed at the kodi website, I saw ABC in there, but not CBS or Fox or NBC; that seems sketchy, like whatever "free" add-ons might be out there are not legal.
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Old 01-01-17, 09:34 AM
  #15  
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
Is Sling live-stream only, or is it everything on demand?
Both. I watched the OJ series on ESPN on demand; there are other shows on demand on ESPN, AMC and other networks available on the $20 package.

I may keep Sling even though I have no interest in ESPN anymore in a week until next fall when college football resumes, and add the $5 add-on TCM. The TCM network and its great movie selection is worth $25/month to me.
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Old 01-01-17, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
As I understand it, Roku is not about content, but more about convenience, kind of like an aggregator, plus a nice little remote. Since it is not a recurring cost, and even the upfront is pretty cheap (or free possibly as you note), I like the idea a lot.
Another vote for Roku + OTA via traditional antenna. Roku has no vested interest in promoting their own content, as do AppleTV and Amazon's Fire. Plus, they're adding more and more channel options, thereby getting closer to the ultimate...everything a la carte at reasonable prices. It'd be nice to have a DVR too, but honestly, I find it unnecessary due to the amount of worthwhile programming on NF alone. There are numerous ABC-CBS-NBC-Fox programs on NF that I was unable to watch because I'm not home when they're first broadcast. Also, Sling is available thru Roku. I get my internet thru the anti-christ/Comcast...supposedly 25Meg...although it regularly only clocks ~7Meg. My monthly is $55, includes NF.
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Old 01-01-17, 10:05 AM
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Some reviews on sling TV
It's surprising....
https://www.cnet.com/products/sling-tv/user-reviews/
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Old 01-01-17, 10:10 AM
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simple.tv and tablo both look really good for OTA HD DVR. Anybody have any experience/preference between them? It looks like simple.tv is way sold out right now, and only has 1/2-channel tuners, Tablo has 2 or 4, and the annual program guide subscription is a little cheaper (although $50/yr vs $69/yr is peanuts either way compared to Dish).
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Old 01-01-17, 10:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Jazzba View Post
Some reviews on sling TV
It's surprising....
https://www.cnet.com/products/sling-tv/user-reviews/
Surprising indeed. That's a lot of negative reviews. I've found CNET reviews to lean a bit more to the negative. Some other sites' reviews aren't so harsh. But in general, it looks like Sling needs more refining.
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Old 01-01-17, 10:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Jazzba View Post
Some reviews on sling TV
It's surprising....
https://www.cnet.com/products/sling-tv/user-reviews/
Wow, that's some bad reviews!

So it seems that, other than sling, there's no option for cable-cutters to watch ESPN, I looked for an avenue to pay espn directly to be able to watch with roku or whatever, but it seems they want to require you to have a traditional TV provider, or sling.
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Old 01-01-17, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
I may keep Sling even though I have no interest in ESPN anymore in a week until next fall when college football resumes
LOL I'm the opposite, I only have interest in college basketball, so I would cancel it in April, or maybe keep it through the NBA finals because my son would want to watch
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Old 01-01-17, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
Wow, that's some bad reviews!

So it seems that, other than sling, there's no option for cable-cutters to watch ESPN, I looked for an avenue to pay espn directly to be able to watch with roku or whatever, but it seems they want to require you to have a traditional TV provider, or sling.
ESPN and ESPN2 comes in fine in HD on my TV through the Sling/ROKU/Wi-Fi connection. My only objection is that sometimes Sling blanks out ESPN's broadcast commercials with a dingy and repetitive ESPN jingle and screen notification that it is on a commercial break. The real commercials are much more entertaining. The football games came through fine.
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Old 01-02-17, 02:08 PM
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My GF cut the cable this spring for a smart TV and a newer antenna. She's got more channels than she wants on broadcast TV, plus Netflix and some other cable channels (History, A&E etc...). It cost her about $350 for the antenna and installation, it only took a few months of not paying for cable to start saving. She didn't change the internet and provider yet, but it's supposed to be done this week.
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Old 01-02-17, 02:56 PM
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Originally Posted by no motor? View Post
My GF cut the cable this spring for a smart TV and a newer antenna. She's got more channels than she wants on broadcast TV, plus Netflix and some other cable channels (History, A&E etc...). It cost her about $350 for the antenna and installation, it only took a few months of not paying for cable to start saving. She didn't change the internet and provider yet, but it's supposed to be done this week.
So much for your Meredith Baxter-Birney marathons
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Old 01-02-17, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by skijor View Post
So much for your Meredith Baxter-Birney marathons
It was a Columbo marathon yesterday, and she's a big fan of Murder She Wrote and 70's game shows. She'd be quite happy with decades old reruns and the news.
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