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mkporter
04-25-2011, 01:57 PM
Who else out there has abandoned traditional TV service and moved to internet based TV? What is your setup?

I just moved into a new house, and my wife and I decided to give it a shot to see how we liked it. We subscribe to Netflix and Hulu Plus, and my wife added MLB online because she's a Giants fan. We watch most of our shows through a Roku XD box. So far, it's going pretty well. It has definitely changed our viewing habits, as we tend to watch shows that are already available on DVD, but we watch some current stuff as well. Not really sure how I'll be watching Bronco games yet. It would be really nice if the NFL had a flexible streaming package. I would probably pay $10 per game for instance to stream a game. On the bright side, one of our new neighbors is a Bronco fan, and he's got the ticket. Still trying to figure out if there will be any streaming draft coverage.

On the $$ front, we've gone from paying $80 per month (plus sunday ticket)for DirecTV to paying $8/month for Hulu plus. We already were paying for Netflix and MLB. We also pay about $15/month more for internet now, because we went up to a 12 Mbps connection. Saving about $55/month so far.

What are your experiences?

MagicHef
04-25-2011, 02:04 PM
I have as well, but we don't have any subscriptions other than netflix. You can find pretty much any show for free. I have a TV and antenna for Broncos games.

Chris
04-25-2011, 02:09 PM
I don't watch TV except for sports (no cable).

For me it's a combination of Netflix, Redbox for impulse viewing, the theatre and buying blu ray box sets.

mwill07
04-25-2011, 02:09 PM
thinking about it. For Bronco games, I've got two possible solutions:
1. find someone in Denver and set up a slingbox
2. go to a sportsbar.

Also, one other service to add to the mix is Amazon video on demand. I haven't tested it out yet, but they have a decent selection of TV networks.

Shananahan
04-25-2011, 02:11 PM
Once you get a Roku, Netflix, etc and a nice TV with USB input, there is no need to ever have cable again.

rugbythug
04-25-2011, 02:17 PM
I have. Will never be back. I bairly watch tv at all anymore.

Chris
04-25-2011, 02:21 PM
So you guys see why the TV companies after terrified of this and are fighting google in court over what "internet TVs" should be allowed to do.

When they can't bundle a ton of useless content with the few things you want, they can't charge you that astronomical price.

mwill07
04-25-2011, 03:06 PM
So you guys see why the TV companies after terrified of this and are fighting google in court over what "internet TVs" should be allowed to do.

When they can't bundle a ton of useless content with the few things you want, they can't charge you that astronomical price.

I won't shed a single tear for the tv companies.

JJG
04-25-2011, 03:09 PM
I've been looking into this also. Live sports seems to be the thing cable companies are holding on to for dear life.
As much as people bash on espn, they have alot of content I would view if I could. I just can't bring myself to pay $50/month for 3-4 channels I would watch on cable. I have local channels only at the moment.

Drek
04-25-2011, 03:17 PM
What are your experiences?

I've been cable/satellite free for about three years now. My personal recommendations:

1. Get a UHF antenna set up for OTA broadcasts. If you live within ~40 miles of a city you can probably pull down all your basic networks in HD. The picture quality is actually superior to what you get from cable/satellite, since they compress heavily.

2. Once you got an antenna set up a media PC. It can be a cheapy, just something with a TV tuner you can throw a DVR type program (like Media Portal) onto. Then you can use it to DVR all the OTA programming for free. Most of the nice ones even have commerical skipping.

3. After doing steps 1 and 2 drop Hulu Plus. Its lineup advantage over Netflix is almost entirely restricted to new network broadcasts. The OTA setup will get that for you, cheaper, and you can then run local media off the home theater PC (HTPC) you set up. Hell, throw an emulator on it and some wireless controllers and you've got a pretty sweet retro gaming/arcade game setup in your living room (or build a house PC for the task and you can even play new release PC games on from your comfy couch, making all those console plebs drool).

4. Find a good torrent site to fill in any cable shows you're missing without too much searching and fairly close after air date.

5. If you got an HDTV and a blu-ray player (if you've got he former you really should get the later) make sure your netflix sub gets you blus too, and enjoy the best movie watching experience going.

My wife and I had cable for about three months late last year (AT&T gave us their Uverse service basically for free). I cancelled it before my free trial was even up (travelling, didn't want the immediate hassle to return everything on my return). Never used it. Between our own blu-ray collection, what we get from Netflix in the mail, what Netflix has online, what I've downloaded for missing cable shows, and the OTA backbone (for local news and PBS primarily) I've never regretted cutting the cord.

mkporter
04-25-2011, 03:29 PM
I've been cable/satellite free for about three years now. My personal recommendations:

1. Get a UHF antenna set up for OTA broadcasts. If you live within ~40 miles of a city you can probably pull down all your basic networks in HD. The picture quality is actually superior to what you get from cable/satellite, since they compress heavily.


This is my next project. I had an antenna up at our last place, and it did okay. We were situated in a valley that got pretty crappy reception. Our new place is up on a hill so i should get a much better signal. The main issue is that our CC&Rs outlaw OTA antennas. The FCC has ruled that these type of restrictions are illegal, but I haven't seen anyone else in our neighborhood with an antenna, so I'm not sure I want to put it the effort to be the first to make an issue out of it. I have a few ideas for an indoor installation, so I'll try these out first.

UberBroncoMan
04-25-2011, 03:35 PM
What's this TV you all speak of.

...remember when we were all using VSR's...wasn't even that long ago.

Drek
04-25-2011, 03:46 PM
This is my next project. I had an antenna up at our last place, and it did okay. We were situated in a valley that got pretty crappy reception. Our new place is up on a hill so i should get a much better signal. The main issue is that our CC&Rs outlaw OTA antennas. The FCC has ruled that these type of restrictions are illegal, but I haven't seen anyone else in our neighborhood with an antenna, so I'm not sure I want to put it the effort to be the first to make an issue out of it. I have a few ideas for an indoor installation, so I'll try these out first.

How far from the nearest city are you? Chances are you don't need anything real special.

If you're up elevation with no major obstacles around you (very tall trees, cell towers, etc.) and you are within ~40 miles you could use this:

http://images2.monoprice.com/productlargeimages/47301.jpg

And you'll be set. I used that from 43 miles as the crow flies outside of St. Louis with absolutely fantastic signal. That antenna is marginally bigger than a paperback novel or a DVD case. Its also only about $23.

mwill07
04-25-2011, 03:50 PM
This is my next project. I had an antenna up at our last place, and it did okay. We were situated in a valley that got pretty crappy reception. Our new place is up on a hill so i should get a much better signal. The main issue is that our CC&Rs outlaw OTA antennas. The FCC has ruled that these type of restrictions are illegal, but I haven't seen anyone else in our neighborhood with an antenna, so I'm not sure I want to put it the effort to be the first to make an issue out of it. I have a few ideas for an indoor installation, so I'll try these out first.

Stick it in the attic.

mkporter
04-25-2011, 04:23 PM
How far from the nearest city are you? Chances are you don't need anything real special.

If you're up elevation with no major obstacles around you (very tall trees, cell towers, etc.) and you are within ~40 miles you could use this:

http://images2.monoprice.com/productlargeimages/47301.jpg

And you'll be set. I used that from 43 miles as the crow flies outside of St. Louis with absolutely fantastic signal. That antenna is marginally bigger than a paperback novel or a DVD case. Its also only about $23.

Nice, I'll check that out. I live in North SD county. I'm actually kind of between the LA and SD broadcasters. At my last place, which was in the same area, I did a little better with the LA channels.

mkporter
04-25-2011, 04:25 PM
Stick it in the attic.

That was my first idea, but I have vaulted ceilings on the upper floor, so there isn't much attic space. There might be room in one particular spot, so I may give it a shot, but there isn't a good way to run the cable that I've figured out yet.

baja
04-25-2011, 04:28 PM
Will Roku work in Mexico?

Mogulseeker
04-25-2011, 05:05 PM
Lol, I don't own a TV

schaaf
04-25-2011, 05:15 PM
anyone find a site similar to atdhe yet???

Jesterhole
04-25-2011, 05:24 PM
I don't have cable and don't miss it one bit. I pump everything I want to my TV over my Xbox, watch blue rays on my PS3, or just watch youTube at my desk. You miss nothing but news and some live events. I can't imagine that regular cable as-is will survive another 10 years at this rate. Everyone I know is doing the same thing.

Karenin
04-25-2011, 05:32 PM
Lol, I don't own a TV

Why would you open this thread just to post that? ****ing clown.

Oh, and: http://www.theonion.com/articles/area-man-constantly-mentioning-he-doesnt-own-a-tel,429/

boltaneer
04-25-2011, 05:48 PM
I've been cable/satellite free for about three years now. My personal recommendations:

1. Get a UHF antenna set up for OTA broadcasts. If you live within ~40 miles of a city you can probably pull down all your basic networks in HD. The picture quality is actually superior to what you get from cable/satellite, since they compress heavily.

2. Once you got an antenna set up a media PC. It can be a cheapy, just something with a TV tuner you can throw a DVR type program (like Media Portal) onto. Then you can use it to DVR all the OTA programming for free. Most of the nice ones even have commerical skipping.

3. After doing steps 1 and 2 drop Hulu Plus. Its lineup advantage over Netflix is almost entirely restricted to new network broadcasts. The OTA setup will get that for you, cheaper, and you can then run local media off the home theater PC (HTPC) you set up. Hell, throw an emulator on it and some wireless controllers and you've got a pretty sweet retro gaming/arcade game setup in your living room (or build a house PC for the task and you can even play new release PC games on from your comfy couch, making all those console plebs drool).

4. Find a good torrent site to fill in any cable shows you're missing without too much searching and fairly close after air date.

5. If you got an HDTV and a blu-ray player (if you've got he former you really should get the later) make sure your netflix sub gets you blus too, and enjoy the best movie watching experience going.

I'm pretty much doing the exact thing.

I really only watched ESPN and NFL Network when I had satellite and I do miss those channels but I do not miss paying 50 bucks for basically those two channels.

I agree that as more and more people switch to this type of setup, it will lead to either cable/satellite companies or cable stations to offer some sort of a la carte packages. I'll gladly pay a small fee for ESPN or NFL Network.

mkporter
04-25-2011, 05:52 PM
Will Roku work in Mexico?

Probably not for most channels. It is a limitation of the streaming services, like netflix, and not the Roku, however.

HILife
04-25-2011, 06:11 PM
Posting to subscribe to thread. keep the info coming. Trying to find a cheaper alternative to cable.

baja
04-25-2011, 06:41 PM
Probably not for most channels. It is a limitation of the streaming services, like netflix, and not the Roku, however.

Thanks

I do get netflix now but through my computer via a proxy server. same with Hulu. The proxy server people say the proxy can be set to the computer or the router. It sounds complicated to set it to the router though.

I recently learned I can get Sunday Ticket from the local satellite service for a 100 dollars per season so I would love to drop Dish network and get the local provider w/ ST

DBruleU
04-25-2011, 06:56 PM
anyone find a site similar to atdhe yet???

www.myp2p.eu

chawknz
04-25-2011, 07:21 PM
I have the basic digital cable package because I want to watch sports and have a DVR as well. I tried the antenna route, but I would have to move it all the time to move between some stations. Plus it doesn't get ESPN or FSC, or things like that.

All the premium channel shows I can get from other sources. It's really live sports that's preventing me from completely ditching cable. ESPN3.com is a big step, but until CBS, FOX, and/or ESPN start streaming games online, nope.

Binkythefrog
04-25-2011, 07:53 PM
I cut the cord recently as well and I love it. No more watching whatever is on, I get to watch most stuff (not all) when I want to.

I'm surprised how many HD channels I can get over the air. Here I get stuff like NHK world (Japanese english news), Russia today, Al Jazeera English. I rarely watch over the air tv though, my wife uses it to watch the major network shows.

I use Plex http://www.plexapp.com/. It is a great media center piece of software that is free. Others use XMBC. It has a great user community that builds plugins for the software so that you get different streaming video plugins that you can easily access on your coach with a cheap remote (or apple remote in my case). Its got a great 10 foot GUI that is easy on the eyes and easy to use.

Plex lets me view my movies, listen to music, see my pictures, watch ESPN3, all the major networks online, Comedy Central, Southpark, National Geographic, History channel, universal sports, and more. Plex also lets you link to applications within plex, so if I want to watch an itunes movie I can just navigate to front row and watch my apple stuff.

There is also an ipad app which allows for remote control, as well as streaming of content to your ipad (i havent really used this feature much)

Once again, the best part is that it is free so you can try it out on your computer. I just repurposed an old macbook pro (2006) my sister had abandoned, hooked it up with a DVI cable and it works great. It isn't the best if you want 1080 HD content, but my TV is only 720p so I didn't need a more powerful computer. If you couldn't tell, I'm a big fan.

For Broncos stuff, I got DirectTV sunday ticket online, but I split it with my cousin who has directtv so that I just use the internet part. No plug in for Plex, but I don't mind going to the computer to set it up for Broncos games.

chawknz
04-25-2011, 07:55 PM
For Broncos stuff, I got DirectTV sunday ticket online, but I split it with my cousin who has directv so that I just use the internet part. No plug in for Plex, but I don't mind going to the computer to set it up for Broncos games.

Man, if DirecTV offered an internet only plan (Without the need for the physical service), I'd be all over that and cut cable in a flash.

I guess that's why they don't offer it. :)

Binkythefrog
04-25-2011, 07:59 PM
Man, if DirecTV offered an internet only plan (Without the need for the physical service), I'd be all over that and cut cable in a flash.

I guess that's why they don't offer it. :)

I'm pretty sure they do offer it, but you have to be able to prove that you can't setup a dish at your residence. I remember reading about it last year.

You have to live somewhere where you don't have a south facing view, or live in an building that doesn't allow it.

chawknz
04-25-2011, 08:00 PM
I'm pretty sure they do offer it, but you have to be able to prove that you can't setup a dish at your residence.

You have to live somewhere where you don't have a south facing view, or live in an building that doesn't allow it.

Oh realllly? That's exactly my situation. I live in an apartment building without a balcony and my landlord has already said no to putting it on the roof. Plus I Have no windows facing south I could ever attempt to put a dish though.

Gotta go check this out!

BroncoBuff
04-25-2011, 08:04 PM
I've never regretted cutting the cord.
What about networks like NFL, ESPN, CNN, MSNBC, E!, TNT and Comedy?

Are their shows (Tosh, Colbert, College Football, MNF) available on Hulu, maybe delayed?

BroncoBuff
04-25-2011, 08:08 PM
Man, if DirecTV offered an internet only plan (Without the need for the physical service), I'd be all over that and cut cable in a flash.

I guess that's why they don't offer it. :)

True dat, definitely. DirecTV is the gold standard of providers.

Timely thread for me, I'm going to Clear (frm Clearwire) on June 1 for Internet and land-line. I would love to kick the cable.

Bronco Boy
04-25-2011, 11:05 PM
I have a home theater pc that I built myself and use a combination of XBMC and Windows Media Center to watch netflix, hulu, espn3, ripped blu rays, etc. It's all controlled by one remote and is quiet and slick. No cable, but I have cable internet and using a splitter from the wall I can get HD local channels which is pretty sweet.

I don't miss cable at all, maybe a little bit for sports but ESPN3 is great, especially for college football.

mkporter
04-25-2011, 11:21 PM
What about networks like NFL, ESPN, CNN, MSNBC, E!, TNT and Comedy?

Are their shows (Tosh, Colbert, College Football, MNF) available on Hulu, maybe delayed?

You can get the comedy central stuff on Hulu Plus which is $8/mo. I think the news channels have some streaming service as well, although I haven't really looked into it. The main challenge is in figuring out what is available and where to get it.

MagicHef
04-25-2011, 11:58 PM
What about networks like NFL, ESPN, CNN, MSNBC, E!, TNT and Comedy?

Are their shows (Tosh, Colbert, College Football, MNF) available on Hulu, maybe delayed?

www.tv-links.eu

They don't have much sports stuff, though.

Drunk Monkey
04-26-2011, 05:05 AM
thinking about it. For Bronco games, I've got two possible solutions:
1. find someone in Denver and set up a slingbox
2. go to a sportsbar.

Also, one other service to add to the mix is Amazon video on demand. I haven't tested it out yet, but they have a decent selection of TV networks.

Option 3, befriend someone with Sunday Ticket and talk them into letting you use the online access. My cousin gives me his log in info for the last 2 years. Works like a champ.

Grumps
04-26-2011, 06:08 AM
I've been cable/satellite free for about three years now. My personal recommendations:

1. Get a UHF antenna set up for OTA broadcasts. If you live within ~40 miles of a city you can probably pull down all your basic networks in HD. The picture quality is actually superior to what you get from cable/satellite, since they compress heavily.

2. Once you got an antenna set up a media PC. It can be a cheapy, just something with a TV tuner you can throw a DVR type program (like Media Portal) onto. Then you can use it to DVR all the OTA programming for free. Most of the nice ones even have commerical skipping.

3. After doing steps 1 and 2 drop Hulu Plus. Its lineup advantage over Netflix is almost entirely restricted to new network broadcasts. The OTA setup will get that for you, cheaper, and you can then run local media off the home theater PC (HTPC) you set up. Hell, throw an emulator on it and some wireless controllers and you've got a pretty sweet retro gaming/arcade game setup in your living room (or build a house PC for the task and you can even play new release PC games on from your comfy couch, making all those console plebs drool).

4. Find a good torrent site to fill in any cable shows you're missing without too much searching and fairly close after air date.

5. If you got an HDTV and a blu-ray player (if you've got he former you really should get the later) make sure your netflix sub gets you blus too, and enjoy the best movie watching experience going.

My wife and I had cable for about three months late last year (AT&T gave us their Uverse service basically for free). I cancelled it before my free trial was even up (travelling, didn't want the immediate hassle to return everything on my return). Never used it. Between our own blu-ray collection, what we get from Netflix in the mail, what Netflix has online, what I've downloaded for missing cable shows, and the OTA backbone (for local news and PBS primarily) I've never regretted cutting the cord.


I have been cable free for about a year now and the only regret that I have is that I waited so long to do it. I pretty much do what you do here.

Question though, I have never really done torrents. Can you ellaborate on it?

baja
04-26-2011, 08:07 AM
I have been cable free for about a year now and the only regret that I have is that I waited so long to do it. I pretty much do what you do here.

Question though, I have never really done torrents. Can you ellaborate on it?

I had been using torrents for years but never was really happy with them until I found this one;

http://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/29767/folx-pro



What's different about this one is it has a great search engine built into it so you just think of something you'd like to down load and it finds it if it's out there.

ColoradoDarin
04-26-2011, 09:31 AM
I would do it it I didn't have 2 kids and could spend all Sunday in a bar instead of having Sunday Ticket (or if DTV allowed me to have internet only feed)

Drek
04-26-2011, 09:41 AM
What about networks like NFL, ESPN, CNN, MSNBC, E!, TNT and Comedy?

Are their shows (Tosh, Colbert, College Football, MNF) available on Hulu, maybe delayed?

Comedy Central is best done through either a HTPC front end (like Boxee or something similar) or through Hulu Plus.

A large portion of your ESPN needs can be met wet ESPN3.com through an Xbox 360. In fact, more and more ISPs are providing ESPN3.com free with your subscription. You can also run this through an HTPC.

MSNBC is available with a slight delay via a Roku with the Newscaster channel.

I don't watch E! or TNT so I haven't really looked into alternatives there. If your interest in TNT centers around the NBA there is an NBA streaming service that gets you every game all season much like MLB.tv.

The only cable network with much in the way of programming that I watch is USA, I generally just torrent the new episodes and up them to my home network drive for playback on an HTPC, PS3, XB360, or a laptop.

mwill07
04-26-2011, 09:47 AM
right now, the biggest impediment to cutting the cable is my wife's viewing habits. If I can figure out how to steam the Food Network, HGTV, Bravo, etc, I'll be good to go.

That, and getting over the whole turning-on-the-tv-and-just-watching-what's-on habit.

baja
04-26-2011, 09:52 AM
right now, the biggest impediment to cutting the cable is my wife's viewing habits. If I can figure out how to steam the Food Network, HGTV, Bravo, etc, I'll be good to go.

That, and getting over the whole turning-on-the-tv-and-just-watching-what's-on habit.

Basic cable will get those stations for about 20 dollars a month.

Drek
04-26-2011, 09:55 AM
I have been cable free for about a year now and the only regret that I have is that I waited so long to do it. I pretty much do what you do here.

Question though, I have never really done torrents. Can you ellaborate on it?

Torrents are the current most frequently used file sharing method. It effectively protects the website because users are only distributing user generated torrent files. A BitTorrent program uses the information in these torrent files to link you to a p2p file sharing network where "seeders" (people with the full completed file) share it with "leachers" (people who are still downloading at least some portion of it). Leachers obviously seed back up during download and it is strongly encouraged throughout the peer community that you upload equal to the total amount you download.

The legality of this runs a pretty wide gamut from "completely legal" to "massively illegal". Many Linux distros can now be downloaded through this method. A lot of indy bands distribute free albums through it. From a legal standpoint the downloading of OTA network broadcasts through it is very defensible. When people turn it towards pirated films still in theaters, new release albums, etc. is when it quickly jumps over the fence into illegality and is pursued by the various industry bodies that have always done so (RIAA, MPAA, etc.)

Anyone interested in torrents should DEFINITELY check out some form of secondary protection. PeerBlock is a must in my opinion. Definitely swing over to iBlocklist.com for some added layers, most notably if you're a gamer you'll want to download a Steam list and "allow" it. You can set it to block all IPs from your block lists in all formats or have it all HTTP traffic (web browsing) but block everything else. HTTP blocking is generally not too necessary (unless you're a proud member of the foil hat brigade) but I strongly recommend at least PeerBlock running in the background for all other processes. Shut it off when you know the only thing you're doing is trustworthy but otherwise it even operates as a nice secondary layer of firewalling.

Hulamau
04-26-2011, 10:09 AM
Who else out there has abandoned traditional TV service and moved to internet based TV? What is your setup?

Still trying to figure out if there will be any streaming draft coverage. What are your experiences?

NFL.com is streaming live draft coverage from the internet....

ghwk
04-26-2011, 11:46 AM
Posting to subscribe to thread. keep the info coming. Trying to find a cheaper alternative to cable.

Ditto, I'd love to dump the satellite.

mkporter
04-26-2011, 01:35 PM
NFL.com is streaming live draft coverage from the internet....

Right you are.. I was hoping that they would again, but hadn't seen an announcement yet. Here's the link:

http://www.nfl.com/draft/2011/live/landing?icampaign=hp_productcp_DraftLive&module=HP_productCP

BroncoBuff
05-19-2011, 06:17 PM
Thanks all, the info in here is paying off for me ... bump to list a couple new things I found:


1. Just learned this, but Google's GMail Phone app has been free for about 6 months now, local and long distance. Works great, but you need a GMail account, and if you want inbound calls you need to sign up for Google Voice (also free).

2. Smart phones get you online free, or almost free - a one-time $15 charge. 'Tether' your phone to laptop or desktop, and the signal works pretty well. You need an adaptor for phone to computer, and some software here: http://www.junefabrics.com/