Tablo Encourages Wasteful Power Consumption

On page one of the “Quick Start Guide” is this ominous message " In order to function correctly, your Tablo DVR must be powered on at all times, including overnight." This is NOT TRUE! Since day one I leave all my devices turned off at night, this includes my Rokus, router, modem and even my antenna amplifier. The Tablo consumes about 12 watts and if used 4 hours per day you are wasting EIGHTYSEVEN Kilowatts of non-productive energy per year. I guess you have very cheap electricity in Canada! Well in New York it is not so cheap. Try this, those readers of this post: Unplug your Tablo tonight and plug it back in tomorrow. You will find that the world did not come to an end and your Tablo works fine. I expect a lot of lengthy discussion on this topic.

Actually, you have cheap electricity just about anywhere in the USA. But, kudos on trying to do more. However, guide updates database maintenance happens on the Tablo at night. Just something to be aware of. But with that said, I think a Tablo support person might need to chime in with details as it might vary depending on whether you have a subscription or not (etc.)

I live in Texas and the cost of the A/C (and refrigerator and washer/dryer, etc) are so huge that they pretty much dwarf anything else. That is, if I turn off my Tablo, I save a few dollars per year… that sort of thing (and don’t forget the computer!).


If the tablo was in sleep mode overnight it wouldn’t be hot enough to fry my eggs when I got up in the morning.

And I live in California where all basic services are expensive. I have bigger social and cost issues then tablo.

Another perspective is a good portion of us also have processes that run overnight that access our Tablo(s).

If you turn your Tablo off overnight, it cannot perform its nightly maintenance.

(According to Tablo Support one of your Tablo units hasn’t run maintenance for over a week.)

And while your Tablo won’t be overrun by gremlins from missing a handful of maintenance periods, as time goes by your Tablo’s database could eventually grow too large and cause significant problems.

And if you always turn your Tablo on during the busy evening watching/recording hours, you could also eventually run out of guide data.

That’s why we don’t recommend turning your Tablo off overnight.

If you do want to save some money/electricity, you can turn everything else off (Roku etc.) but make sure to leave the Tablo on at least a few nights a week.


Tablo is basically a DVR product(time shifting) that also supports live TV - linear TV. There is also a power usage difference between a 2-tuner and 4-tuner model. For a household, the average amount of time recording and watching must be larger then 4 hours.

But if I assume the original proposition of a wasted 87 Kilowatts per year, even in my high energy cost state that comes out to around 74 cents a month.

My routers, powerline adapter, WiFi extenders, Roku’s, FireTV sticks electricity cost must be way more then that. And who knows how much it costs when I fall asleep with the TV on.

If I ever start turning off my tablo at night, I’m going to use all the savings from my electricity bill to buy ANOTHER TABLO for a friend or family member.

ps - If everyone on earth would turn off their cellphones while they slept at night, that would save way more power. Save the humans!

And, I’ll have the money to fill up the tank on my SUV! (just keeping things in perspective for the majority, who have long way to go with regards to “earth care”)

I’m on a tiered electric usage plan in California.
The heighest tier I’m in is typically tier 2, which has a rate of around $0.30 per KWH.
So that’s around $26 per year.

To save $26 per year I’d need to do this…

  1. Power on my Tablo when I want to start using it for the day.
  2. Pray the power port solder didn’t break yet.
  3. Power off my Tablo after I’m done using it for the day.
  4. In about a year, the power port would break from unanticipated repetative stress.
  5. Search the internet for power port unanticipated repetative stress braces.
  6. Search liquor cabinet to forget why I needed to do the last internet search.
  7. Buy a replacement Tablo for a few hundred dollars.

I live in California and may also be on tier 2 but calculations should really be done as if you don’t have solar and are super energy efficient because before tablo you wanted the lowest energy usage and thus energy costs. Thus tier 1.

If you have solar, tablo energy costs are probably zero.

I think about it this way…
I was already exceeding tier 1 allowance, which is currently 255 KWH, before I bought my Tablo, so it gets the tier 2 cost.
Also, it’s not an essential device, like a refrigerator, which I logically place in the tier 1 category.

This is how I got my son to stop using his old energy hog desktop gaming computer.
I showed him his computer was using 1/3 of our electricity, but it was from tier 3, which doubled our electric bill.

Ah, the long lost days of tier 3. :slight_smile:

I am so glad I don’t live in California.

You all can keep California. Sounds like a backward country anymore real third world like.

If you have a pool things get even worse here :frowning:

To put things in perspective the power draw from a Tablo is about the same as a Tivo, about 16W. Cable DVRs have been known to be as high as 22W.

I measured my Tablo Quad draws 9.9W when not in use.
It’s got a 4GB hard drive attached.

I can remember getting knocked out of a program on cable beause I paused it and the device though that was a. Signal to update. It is like the old days when you logged on to the PC to do some thing quick but first Microsoft locked up your PC to perform a major software update. Few devices now are ever really off line.

Do you also got the max power draw?

No, just remembering delays caused by shutting devices off to save power.

You could trip off the Main Breaker, light some candles and save 100% of the power bill!!!