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TiVo Premiere XL4

TiVo Premiere XL4

from  $279.99+
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82 Engadget Score
There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.
82

There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Engadget Review

TiVo continues to stand head and shoulders over provider-issued DVRs, but it still falls short of the expectations we had when it first launched.

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82 Engadget Score
There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.
82

There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Scores

Engadget

82
 

User Reviews

90
BlackSmokeDMax
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
100
Goldwing2001
A gadget unicorn - Engadget
90
dignan17
I've been a Tivo owner for 11 years now, and despite their slowness (some might...read more
Write a Review

Score Breakdown

 
83
Average user Score
 
90
BlackSmokeDMax
04.26.13
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
 
100
Goldwing2001
12.21.12
A gadget unicorn - Engadget
 
90
dignan17
03.24.12
I've been a Tivo owner for 11 years now, and despite their slowness (some might say refusal) to innovate, I still believe that they do this product category better than anyone else. Certainly far better than the cable companies.I upgraded to this box when my Series 3 Tivo (not Tivo HD) started getting a little flaky, and I don't regret spending so much money on it for a second. The design is beautiful - much slimmer than the previous model, with a really nice black front with great looking info LEDs. The Tivo peanut remote is still the most ergonomic design, IMO. The remote that comes with the Tivo is fantastic, but I still recommend upgrading to the Tivo Slide remote, which I believe is the best remote control ever invented.Let me tell a little story. Recently my wife and I went away for two weeks, and all the while the Tivo was recording 5 to 10 hours of HD every single day. We got back and the storage meter said we’d gone from 12% full to 38% full. That’s more space than I’m going to need, and if I wanted more for some crazy reason, I could add a TB of space for an absurd amount of recording space.One of the things that pushed me over into upgrading to the Elite was the four tuners. For some reason, it seems that the networks enjoy teasing me by putting everything on TV on Thursday nights. I'd regularly hit the two-tuner limit on the Series 3, and end up having to "obtain" my TV shows through less than honest methods. This is no longer a problem. I haven't had the same problem since, and it's amazing to see this device record FOUR HD streams while watching a fifth. That's pretty impressive, IMO.If I had to list my cons for the Tivo, I'd have a couple. For one, it's baffling that a device this expensive does not have built-in WiFi. That astonishes me. I can get a $175 Wii brand new with built-in WiFi. The 802.11n adapter Tivo has created is the most bizarre monstrosity I've ever seen. It's so awful I haven't bothered to set it up yet, and still am relying on powerline ethernet to get data to my Tivo. Seriously, that adapter is horrible.People have complained about the speed of the "new" Tivo UI. Personally, I don't have much of a problem with the speed, just the layout. I really hate that banner on the top, and have set it to only show me shows that are in my list already because I don't want it suggesting crap to me. Tivo's suggestions have gotten far worse in this new revision, or at least I was surprised to see that they don't carry your suggestions over from a previous box. You would think they'd be smart enough to carry over your thumb ratings and behavior info. That can't be a large amount of data... As a result, for some reason my Tivo has decided I'm a staunch, hardcore Republican. No offense to the right, but I'm not that at all, and the fact that Tivo thinks I am shows how poor their suggestions are. My Tivo was recording dozens of shows from the Fox News Channel (which I loathe), and despite my giving three thumbs down to several of them, kept recording conservative programming. Very annoying.Besides those small complaints, I couldn't be happier. The Tivo Premiere Elite is the best DVR ever made, and the ultimate product for people who love TV and make it their hobby.(note: if I could, I'd give the Elite a 9.9 out of 10, but I can't bring myself to give them a perfect score considering that WiFi issue. It's unforgivable, and the awful wireless adapter they sell is a terrible solution. Still, given how amazing the rest of the box is, 9 even seems too low. Oh well!)
 
100
nielej
01.29.12
I had a first gen TiVo. I left when cable started incorporating DVD into their service. Cable DVD is not as good but having it all in one was more appealing. I finally got fed up with cable costs and went to over the air HD channels and the TiVo. Really happy I did especially since it is more and more connected and they are adding subscription services.
 
60
mclarenlife
11.19.11
A forgettable product. It isn't bad, exactly, but also doesn't do anything particularly well. - Engadget
 
60
godofbiscuits
11.07.11
A forgettable product. It isn't bad, exactly, but also doesn't do anything particularly well. - Engadget