I admit it....I like TV. I like it a lot. I use it to relax late at night, to start my mornings with a cup of coffee and the news, and to stay current on the latest hit shows like The Office. But it kills me to pay over $50 a month for this privilege.
This week, I've been thinking about how I could reduce my expenditure on TV programming, while still having enough channels to scratch my TV itch. One caveat: I won't even consider a solution that doesn't include a DVR.
Here's what I have now:
Dish Network "America's Top 100" with Locals
HD enabled w/ DVR
Total monthly cost: $55.
After exploring several options, here is what I have decided to go with:
- Samsung SIR-T150 (HD tuner/receiver) - bought for $35 (including shipping) on ebay
- Silver Surfer HD Antenna - Included as part of the ebay deal, but these can be found for about $10 on amazon.
- DVR subscription - $6.95/month. ReplayTV 5040. (The normal monthly rate is $12.95, but I get a discount since I also still have an [inactive] Panasonic showstopper 2020 on my account qualifying me for the multiple unit discount.)
This solution will allow me to receive 6 channels in HD (for watching live) or to record them in Standard Definition (via my DVR).
My Total Savings: $48/month
If you are not a gadget geek like me, and don't have a couple of DVRs sitting in the closet, I saw plenty of Tivo Series 2 machines on Ebay/Craiglist in the $50 range. Those will require a $12.95/month service charge.
Had I started from scratch, it would have been:
$35 ebay for tuner and antenna.
$50 ebay/craigslist for Tivo
$12.95 monthly for Tivo
Curious as to whether you could receive HD channels over the air? Check out your address at antennaweb.org and find out.