First Purchase; OG 4-Tuner or wait for Quad?

“And for those plotting purchases, we support both sizes of standard 2.5” SATA drives (7mm and 9.5mm)."

This was the issue. I could find 2.5" drives with capacity greater than 2TB but only in the 15mm height, and even then nothing approaching the 8TB theoretical limit.

And maybe I care too much about the theoretical and should focus on the practical.

Well I found an 8TB Seagate Expansion, USB 3.0 for $149. And as I said, it really isn’t an issue of clutter or outlets where I plan to place it. That might just be the thing to do and once it’s done I’ll probably never think about it again.

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It could take awhile but you will probably be thinking about it again.

When users have a drive that can contain 2,000 to 4,000 1 hour high definition recordings, they almost always want to save just one more recording.

Well, only if you are the type that never deletes email… LOL!

I’ve never had an issue even with a 500 GB storage for my video recordings…
But I also tend to keep my mailbox clean. :slight_smile:

I keep may units clean. But you can find any number forum posts where fairly large disks fill up. Some users think tablo is a media server like Plex and not a DVR.

And thus one of the reason for the various rippers is to relocate all of these recordings on to a NAS.

We discussed the 4-Tuner vs the Quad and decided just to jump into the 4-Tuner. Our thought was if we cut the DirecTV now we save $140/month (we were paying $180, but now just paying Sling $40). If, in two months, there is a massive change in the Quad and we HAVE to have it we are still up on the game even if we bought both.

Worst case, we buy the Quad, clean off the 4 and pass along the 4 to a relative or neighbor. Best case, we have saved $280 in the meantime.

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forced” might be speculative at this point, considering it’s completely voluntary for broadcaster to change over.
Weather or not it ever becomes a mandate is unclear. The two-way communication isn’t necessarily possible everywhere… even though all new tv’s will have 3.0 capability.
But still, it might be a something to consider:
Tablo Blog: What Cord Cutters Need to Know About ATSC 3.0 - Part 2

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Yeah…I’ll want a new one by then anyway.:grinning:

Although tablo is not a media server like Plex, it is a media server. Tablo is more than a DVR, - it is a streaming device. By definition a media server is a device that simply stores and shares media.

You can probably find forum posts where users wanted to store media, created by devices other then tablo, and have the various tablo apps process it. That included all the extensions such as storing in their favorite format and transcoding on the fly to the desired target player,etc.

And tablo records in HLS format and thus all devices have to have players that support that format. A DVR is a streaming device. It’s just a matter of what pipe it uses to pumps the media down to the display device.

Not sure what you’re saying here.

Tablo is a DVR, not a streaming device. It captures OTA TV signals and stores the content.

It is able to deliver its content to streaming devices such as Roku and your app-equipped phone or tablet.

It serves a very particular sub-set of what you call “media”, so it would be a “media server” in a very narrow sense. But that’s not how we use the term “media server”, so it’s not a “media server”. A “media server” is used to describe, for example, Plex.

It doesn’t just store the content. As zippy points out, it records, and stores, in HLS format - HTTP Live Streaming. It may just meet minimal requirements… serving media, video only. A digital media server stores content and makes it available on a network.

Tablo is much more than a DVR - it streams live TV to devices… like what a media server does.

What a term is used to describe vs what the term defines may have some variances.

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It sounds like there is agreement on the functionality, but some hair-splitting over semantics.

Personally, I’m anti-semantic.


Alright, I get your context. For the casual user, the tablo and various internet devices work out-of-the-box (more or less). But, yes, many comments are made how they wished tablo could go just one or two steps more so they could integrate it into their way of doing things. aka: the right way
Like a comprehensive NAS based, multi-layered, automated media server in a dedicated area of the house.

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I initially wondered why Tablo doesn’t have NAS support. Their comment “Networked (NAS) storage – There is too wide a variation in network speeds to support this.” made me think about it more and I get it from a support perspective.

Thankfully there are also tools to get the files over to a NAS if desired for those of us that truly want that scenario. As such, I’d rather do that than risk recording issues because of network conditions, particularly with how much we stream from other services at the same time.

I agree - direct recording to a pysically connected hard drive is almost error free. But maybe one day they’ll support Gigabit hardwired NAS, cause really if it’s 1000 Mbps and hardwired it is faster than most USB connected hard drives.

I had commented on the seemingly outdated USB 2 for the drive. It was pointed out that at maximum quality 10Mbps * 4 tuners = 80Mbps With max six connected devices (at max) 60Mbps + 80Mbps = 140Mbps equates to ~ 17.5MB/s. Below the max transfer rate of virtually any external USB 2 drive.

I’m not sure if it’s really that straight forward (well I’m reasonably certain it’s not), but the math shows the USB 2 isn’t a bottle neck for the device.

All that aside, I do like your plan and would like the see the tablo with more versatility… sadly I kind’a understand why it’s what it is.

Close, but it’s actually 40Mbps.

Correcting for initial miscalculation…
(6 streaming devices x 10Mbps) + (4 tuners x 10Mbps) = 100Mbps = ~12.5MBps

USB 2 theoretical maximum thruput is 480Mbps.
Thruput can be half that rate, at around 240Mbps, like when using MS Windows XP, for example.

Some things to note.
There are 2 types of thruput rates the Tablo utilizes.
One is for storing data on the hard drive, and the other is for streaming across a network.
They might not be the same rates.

For example, the Tablo may very well be writing to its hard disk at a steady rate of 10Mbps, during a recording, however, it doesn’t seem to stream at a stead 10Mbps across the network when viewing the same recording.
Looks like it bursts the stream, waits a few seconds, and continues the next burst.

That being said, the rates set in the Tablo settings for ‘Live TV Quality’, and ‘Recording Quality’ must be the lowest common denominator between hard drive, and network thruput.
The hard drive needs to have a thruput that is equal to, or greater than the network thruput, which should not be a real world issue, but it’s interesting to think about.

People have discussed this for years; many seem to want to believe that “more is better” and refuse to believe that yes, you can put that 5400rpm drive in there and drive all your 8 tuners and 5 extenders across the network, with plenty of bandwidth to spare even if everything’s going full tilt boogie.

It’s true.

Slower is fine, and when you’re talking internal then slower will generate less heat–which is preferred. Keep that in mind when the new Quad comes out.

What you also want out of a drive is that it doesn’t go to sleep. Pay attention. Some modern drives have that burned into their firmware, that they will sleep and spin down.

I concede my stupidity… I have no further comment

That is the rate for the communication between the bus and the peripheral. It isn’t necessarily the rate/speed - throughput, for the storage device. I did a bit of searching beforehand, and most suggestions ranged from 20MB/ - 40MB/s for external storage drives.

Probably because they are two separate technologies? Just because it streams data at 10Mbps doesn’t limit disk read/write size or speed… it still works how it works.

None of this accounts for buffers, disk cache, or readahead. In the end, although we’d all like faster drive access, even if just makes us feel better, USB 2 is adequate for the tablo’s capabilities. This is probably something an engineer would look at and think how dumb we are for even thinking of such a thing.