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Level 7

Recording TV shows from cable

I have an RCA Roku tv, I also have cable and I want to be able to record tv shows to watch at a later date. Is there a device available to let me do this? I have tried 2 different digital converter boxes that said you could record to a usb drive, but neither one worked.

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4 Replies
Level 21

Re: Recording TV shows from cable

First, no Roku device has recording ability. So you have to use something else. Myself, I added a TV tuner card to a PC and use that for OTA recording. However, you want to record from cable. Since most cable channels are encrypted, you can't use a TV tuner card for that. And the program providers (such as HBO, Starz, etc.) don't want you to be able to record their programming. So you might run into legal issues trying to record such programming. 

However, there is at least one company that offers devices that are compatible with cable systems, and that's Tivo. https://www.tivo.com/ They offer the Tivo Edge, which can record cable TV. However, it doesn't come cheap. The box itself is on sale right now for $250. It also requires paying a monthly fee, or paying for a "lifetime" license which is an additional $550. They do appear to have a sale on that as well right now, but rather than me quoting their page you should look yourself. https://www.tivo.com/products/edge-cable

I also have no idea if the cable company would have a monthly charge for you to use it on their system. I dropped Cable TV over two decades ago, so no idea what charges they might have. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), Ultra (4800), Premiere (3920), Insignia 720p Roku TV, Sharp 4K Roku TV, Nvidia Shield, Windows 10 Pro x64 running Serviio and Plex on a wired Gigabit network.
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Level 7

Re: Recording TV shows from cable

I have investigated the TiVo alternative. They advised me that I would need a cable card to use their system. Problem is, my cable company does not supply the cable card so the TiVo option will not work for me. If this is the only option, then I guess I have no way of recording the shows I want to record.

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Level 21

Re: Recording TV shows from cable

Yeah, I think Tivo was probably your only option. It's a shame your provider doesn't support the cable card. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), Ultra (4800), Premiere (3920), Insignia 720p Roku TV, Sharp 4K Roku TV, Nvidia Shield, Windows 10 Pro x64 running Serviio and Plex on a wired Gigabit network.
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Level 13

Re: Recording TV shows from cable

Unfortunately the cable companies have done a good job in locking down their systems to force users into renting their DVR's in the event that you want to use this type of technology.

As an alternative, you didn't mention which cable company you have but many have "channels" in the Roku store which offer on-demand content after you authenticate with your cable provider, as well channels from the individual "channels" which offer the same type of functionality.

Your other option might be to move on from your cable company and switch to a service like Sling, YouTube TV, etc which offer DVR functionality as part of their service offering via your Roku.

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