DirecTV Tivo vs. Standalone

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Original poster
Jan 21, 2004
Ok, so I have questions. Does DirecTV tivo have to dial out just like the standalone tivo, or does it get its program info from the satellite like a normal reciever? Also, are the newer DirecTivos able to connect to broadband via their USB ports if the answer to the above is that they have to dial out? I have a standalone series 1 (which I hacked to include a wireless card, telnet, tivoweb, video extraction, etc.), which I am considering dumping in favor of a DirecTivo, for a number of reasons, first and foremost, that they save the raw mpeg data from the satellite directly to the hardrive, eliminating the different quality modes and giving it a lot more storage capacity than my standalone when recording at best quality mode.


I'm not a Tivo expert by any means, but I think I can at least answer a couple of your questions, or at least give some input.

First off, I would recommend that you check out the forums at Tivo Community (Directv forum)

If your intent is to extract the information from your Directivo, as far as I know this is not possible on any Series2 Tivo. I do not know if anyone makes a Series1 Directivo though.

Some other things to think about :

-2 tuners so you can record two things or watch/record something else
-can still upgrade the HDD so you can put big HDDs in there
-recording quality WAY up.

-No video extraction (yet?)
-No HMO (Home media option which means no tivo sharing,remote scheduling, or streaming music/pictures off your PC to your Tivo)
-You'll have to run a second SAT line to the Tivo to use both tuners
-In general Series2 Tivos are less hackable

Hope this helps
DirecTivos get their guide data via satellite like other DirecTV receivers. You may need to have it call out to initially set it up, but afterwards it's not necessary for day-to-day functionality. You do get a daily reminder/message that it hasn't dialed out successfully, but I've gone hundreds of days without dialing in. They are still using the phone connection for software updates, for some reason.

Check out the Tivo underground forum at for info about hacking the USB ports on the newer DirecTivos. If that's not allowed to be discussed there, check out (or it may be for their Tivo hacking forums.
Please reply by conversation.