Collection of Media Center PCs. One with TV card for recording, networked to thin clients at each TV. No, it’s not ideal… but it wouldn’t require internet, just a lot of do-it-yourself.
The now discontinued Channel Master CM7500 DVR+ does not require Internet (or even network) connectivity. It can likely be found on eBay.
This unit connects to the television using HDMI, so it must be located with the television and cannot stream to the computer or other devices. If it does have an Internet connection, it will use this to download 2 weeks worth of listings. If it does not, it will give up to 48 hours of guide data using PSIP.
The PSIP data does not contain the flag indicating if a show is new or not, so the ability to schedule it to record only new shows will be lost, but this will allow for a DVR that supplies guide data without any Internet connectivity. That being said, an Internet outage will not affect its usage ability and all already downloaded listings will still be available during the outage.
If the goal is to have a DVR that does not require any type of Internet connection, this device night be worth considering.
It looks like the replacement product (Stream+) operates in a similar fashion according to this support information…
If that is your goal, try this. I’ve had one of these for over a year now, it is outstanding. As a bonus, you also get a streaming device as well as a DVR (it’s built in). You can plug an inexpensive 1GB or 2TB external hard drive for storage of your recordings, just about any type will work.
Because it is not on your network, it is good for one TV and one only … but you can take it to another room and plug it into a TV there, of course (it is small and light). The guide is free and the User Interface is beautiful. Because it is not having to transcode signals, there is no delay when pulling up a channel (or when changing them).
Just last night I ordered my 1st Tablo unit. I am in the process of jumping from Tivo to Tablo. My Tivo is getting rather full and it is difficult to add extra storage… and the Tablo looks to be more efficient (storage wise) and supports up to 8tb. We will see…
Anyhow, I can see that using Tablo during outages of internet service would be a boon. Outages in my area seem to happen routinely, i.e. a couple of times per week. I hope the Tablo will allow me to access recorded shows and continue to record pre-scheduled shows during such outages. Tivo can do that, so it would be a big step down, if Tablo requires my internet service to be active all the time.
Recording OTA has no need for internet - other than having the guide/schedule data available. With subscription, there’s 2 weeks for a concern. Without, I believe you more or less use manual scheduling.
Read 4 here - https://www.tablotv.com/blog/tablo-faqs-do-i-need-internet-use-tablo-ota-dvr/. Some users claim it (almost) always works with their device, others say it usually does… varies by device.
An alternative or work-a-round for some is the use of #tablo-apps:third-party-apps-plex 3rd Party Apps to off-load their recordings to watch via other means.