Cord Cutting

So I “Cut the cord” back in 2013 after having ATT Uverse for a couple years. ATT had just informed me that my TV and internet rates would both be going up by a combined $30 a month, but that my internet speed had doubled (6Mbps up to a blazing 12Mbps)! Yay! So the service was cancelled.

An antenna was purchased from Crutchfield (Channel Master 4221HD)
While this antenna says “Mid-Range outdoor rooftop” I ended up just setting it up in the attic of the house and I get great signal strength (Channels 2 through 67+ all come in crystal clear)
I live roughly 30 miles away – line of sight – from the closest major city with broadcast towers
If I had a need (or more money) I probably would have settled on the Channel Master 4228HD for extended ranges
The antenna requires no power and I ended up re-using the existing coax run from the basement to the attic

Netflix and Amazon Prime apps on the TV. An AppleTV for connectivity to the mobile phones. Chromecast. XBMC (now Kodi) running on a raspberry pi is a major provider of entertainment as well.

The only complaint, after about a year of antenna TV, was the lack of a DVR function. I priced it out running MythTV/XBMC combo, but the cost of the computer in addition to the 30-35 watts of power used (about $3.50 a month in electricity) wasn’t ideal.

Then I read about the Channel Master DVR+ and was amazed! This is going to sound like a CM ad, but this is my experience so far.
I received the DVR+ and set it up with HDMI, power, and a wireless USB. I ran through the initial setup wizard and then updated the firmware. I could now pause live TV! But something was missing; it wasn’t automatically recording what I was watching so I couldn’t rewind. I grabbed an old laptop and a USB to SATA enclosure, did a little work, and then had a 250GB SATA drive external to the DVR+. After formatting all functionality was as it should be! $250 for this isn’t bad, although I had a USB wireless and external HD laying around already.

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