Tablo Connect Problems

Whenever I am not on my home network and I fire up a show or event I have recorded on my Tablo I cannot jump to any point in the recording. The recording length shows initially as 0:00 and slowly “buffers” to the full event time over a very long period (~30 minutes for a 4 hour football game). I can only skip forward in the program as far as it has buffered. An example of the issue would be if I wanted to watch the second half of a football game I would have to start the record and wait 15-20 minutes for the program to buffer to the 2 hour mark so I can skip to it. It is difficult to explain but I have not problem on my home network and I can see the full program time and skip forward with no problem. 

This is what it looks like when I start the recording:

Then it buffers a little bit…

And so on. 

This makes it pretty hard to use unless you are on your home network. 

This is how it is supposed to work for remote connections as the show must be downloaded to the device to watch it. However, you can skip ahead to any point in the show even if it’s not downloaded and it will resume playing from there.

Which device are you using? iPad?

I have the same problem on laptop, iphone and android tablet. I cant imagine that this is how it is supposed to work. The show isnt getting downloaded to my device is it? Why wouldnt it just show the entire show length and let me skip ahead to where I want just like it does on my home network? I love the Tablo at home but if this is how it works when I am out of my home network then I probably cant count on using it away from home.

Thanks for your response.

If you have your Tablo Connect quality setting to anything but “Full Quality”, the Tablo has to transcode the recording to the setting you have made.  That makes it work almost identical to live TV as opposed to a recording.  It does transcode faster than real time, but not by much.

If you have good upload speeds at home (5 Mpbs for 720p or 10Mbps for 1080p), and you are in an area with the at least the same download speeds, you can set Tablo Connect to Full Quality.  That make your device act just like it is on your home network, and you can move to any part of the recording that you want (I just tried it myself, and it worked just as described).

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Oh snowcat. You are awesome. That was the problem. I set it to full quality and it all works good. Great explanation. Thank you so much.

Glad to help.  :)

Full quality - just like home network (no extra tuners used)
Any other quality - transcodes and uses an extra tuner

One of the features promised by Tablo on their initial release was an automatic quality (you can still see it listed in the settings with a “coming soon” after it), but it has never materialized.  I am sure that would have to use an extra tuner.

My apologies I assumed you were using Tablo Connect at “Full Quality”.


I have 10 Mbps upload speed and 1080p does stream well remotely. Buffering problems. You need faster speeds for that. 720p Roku / Chromecast works well with 10 Mbps. I monitored the bandwidth on the router and 5 Mbps would not be fast enough for 720p.

If a 720p stream transmits a 5 Mbps on the local network (according to the documentation), why would it struggle with 5 Mbps upload speeds?   Is it because the 5 Mpbs upload is usually not consistent?  Or does it actually stream at a higher rate than that?

@snowcat @TabloSupport

I don't think the documentation is that accurate about the bitrate for 720p Roku / Chromecast. Please see the attached image of my remote streaming when using Tablo Connect with the 720p Roku / Chromecast recording quality.

Remember, the 5 or 10 is usually described as “up to…” speeds and not guaranteed! The REAL speed may depend on many other factors, time of day, users on your card (if cable), etc. 
Just because you have “bought 10meg service” doesn’t mean it’s sitting there running 10 all the time, that’s “up to” unless it’s comcast I suppose, the bandwidth hogs of the world. 

Also remember the Internet infrastructure was not intended for this sort of use, so many areas cant’ sustain such speeds. It was built with PC data, web, etc. in mind - the structure was intended to handle data as in computer data, web data, downloads of short duration. It was not build, the infrastructure of the bulk of the 'net isn’t there for and wasn’t built with tv, movies and so on in mind, such sustained bandwidth needs. Much of the US infrastructure simply isn’t new enough or strong enough.
You are lucky if it is where you are as that means it’s all newer equipment. 

@snowcat The recording qualities set on the Tablo are ‘static’ once you’ve chosen one. 720p is sent out at 5Mbps exactly. I can’t speak to your network - but in our testing upload speeds do typically vary quite a bit.