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byebyeisdn

join:2002-06-29
Naperville, IL

Smaller, newer HD Set Top Box Option?

We've been a WOW customer for 15+ years and recently switched back to WOW Cable TV again, in addition to our internet service. We received a pair of Scientific Atlanta 4250HDC boxes to go with our Signature cable service. Honestly, compared to our Comcast boxes, these look like they are from 15+ years ago. Not only are they much bigger, the cable guide and menus are harder to read and the On Demand navigation is cumbersome and seems to lack a search option.

Is there any other STB option with HDMI available in the Chicago suburbs? Preferably a smaller box with newer menus and On Demand title search. I contacted customer support, but they had to schedule a tech to come out to discuss any options and could not say if there was another box of this type, other than perhaps what is included in the Ultra service.

While we are saving a significant amount of money, I do miss the 3D channels and 3D On Demand offerings Comcast had. Any plans for WOW to introduce 3D content in the future?

adam1991

join:2012-06-16
Columbus, OH
Does WOW offer Ultra TV in your area?

Otherwise, your choices would be Tivo, roll your own Windows Media Center, or--and I think this is the best choice--wait just a bit for the Ceton Q/Echo combination to come out and simply buy your own whole-house DVR.

The Ceton stuff is based on Windows Media Center, but it'll be sold as a packaged appliance. Of particular interest is their Echo extender, very very small and low power. Six tuners just like Ultra TV, and once you've had Media Center you'll wonder why you waited.


cast sucks

@dsl.net
reply to byebyeisdn
get directv.

They stuff WOW does not like

CSN + HD
BIG TEN ALT's HD
NFL network HD
NBA TV HD
NHL network HD
MLB network HD
ESPN 3D
PPV 3D
N3D
3NET

and more

alan92rttt

join:2012-02-27
DTV great option. ......

While their may be a few channels DTV has that I'd want, I'd end up paying more.

DTV does not have a real internet option. DTV + any real internet option would cost more than I pay for WOW's ultra service.


just look

@wideopenwest.com
reply to byebyeisdn
If you would actually look through on demand you will see hey have 3d content.


RF

@wideopenwest.com
reply to byebyeisdn
Ask for the Cisco Explorer 4642HDC. I turned in my old Scientific Atlanta 4250HDC in person at their Naperville office for another reason, then asked for a new STB and they gave me the 4642HDC. It's sleeker and less bulky. It looks like the latest model STB now provided by WOW.

qbwaggle

join:2012-05-31
Troy, MI
reply to adam1991
said by adam1991:

...wait just a bit for the Ceton Q/Echo combination to come out and simply buy your own whole-house DVR.

I'm keeping an eye on the Ceton Q/Echo as well. It should be out later this year (it looks like the Echo will launch first - beta testing will start in July - no word on Q beta testing). My only question is pricing. It should be cheaper than TiVo, but I have a feeling that the Q is going to be pricey considering it needs to have power to serve media to several extenders (Echos) and it includes a Bluray drive. I'm most curious about the Echo pricing.... It also works with a Windows 7 PC running Media Center. For $200 you can buy a CableCard adapter (USB or PCIe) from Ceton.


WOW_Dan
Premium
join:2011-03-24
Naperville, IL
kudos:39
reply to byebyeisdn
Ultra TV is offered in all of our service areas, with the only exception being the old Broadstripe territories. The media players that are the set top boxes are much smaller than the SA/Cisco boxes. If you need a smaller box, and also need HD video, the Ultra TV media players are the only smaller option.

byebyeisdn

join:2002-06-29
Naperville, IL
Thanks all for the quick replies,

RF and WoW_Dan, are the on screen guides with the 4642 improved over the 4250? Perhaps by category and title with search, rather than just by theme and network? Any other differences? Both have HDMI etc?

Looks like Ultra would be $25 more a month for our setup. I'm sure it's worth it for all the features, but maybe not for the annoyances I have with just the STB interface.

Another option would be if we replaced our 4250 with an HD DVR. For two boxes that would only be $12 extra a month or perhaps we'd just replace one and deal with the other. Do any WoW HD DVR STB offer improved menus/guides with search and title listings?

qbwaggle- thanks I'll Google the Ceton setup and Tivo as well. Having a DVR might be handy if it helps with content. So is it correct to say that one of these 3rd party DVR systems replaces your WOW STB, such that you would at least save the $7 (or $13 for DVR) WOW equipment fee if you subscribe to the DVR service? The 3rd party DVR would also index all the On Demand programming too?

cast sucks- I looked at DTV, but it was about the same price as Comcast with our setup. A little cheaper up front with the new subscriber bonuses, but not as good as the WoW bundle with internet.

just look- sure, if I had my previous Comcast RNG110 HD set top box, perhaps I would have found the 3D content! I'll check again for it. I admit we didn't watch ESPN 3D or the other 3D channel much, but it's nice to have some On Demand movies in 3D.


WOW_Dan
Premium
join:2011-03-24
Naperville, IL
kudos:39
The 4642's have an updated version of the same guide, it's really not much different from the user's perspective. The old guide and the newer guide both include a search by title feature, but on a day by day basis. If you open the guide, and press the A button on the remote (yellow triangle) you can select browse by title. Then select the first letter of the show you're looking for, and browse the list for the show. It only shows one day's worth of shows, so if you want to check another day, you can press either Day+ on the remote, or the B button and change the date to the desired date over the next 6 days.
--
Dan Della Terza
WOW! Internet, Cable & Phone
Network Operations Center

qbwaggle

join:2012-05-31
Troy, MI
reply to byebyeisdn
said by byebyeisdn:

qbwaggle- thanks I'll Google the Ceton setup and Tivo as well. Having a DVR might be handy if it helps with content. So is it correct to say that one of these 3rd party DVR systems replaces your WOW STB, such that you would at least save the $7 (or $13 for DVR) WOW equipment fee if you subscribe to the DVR service? The 3rd party DVR would also index all the On Demand programming too?

Yes the Ceton setup (or TiVo) would replace the WOW! STB so you would save the equipment lease fees. BUT you'd need to get a CableCard from WOW! which I believe costs $3.50/month. You would only need 1 CableCard in the Ceton setup because it is a whole home DVR solution (the Q box is the "gateway" with the CableCard and the Echo is "media player" or extender that streams the video from the Q box). TiVo at this time does not have a whole home DVR solution that I am aware of so you would need a TiVo box and CableCard for every TV. I've read TiVo has a whole home DVR solution in the works but I haven't seen pricing or a release date.

Now, the On Demand programming is another issue. I THINK that you would lose the On Demand programming if you used a 3rd party solution like Ceton or TiVo. Maybe someone who has seen a solution like this in action can better answer that question.

chitown7777

join:2012-06-25
Naperville, IL
reply to cast sucks
said by cast sucks :

get directv.

"Darn, thunderstorms outside. Guess I'll just hangout and watch some TV. Oh, wait......"


troubleagain

@wideopenwest.com
reply to WOW_Dan
I wish I had known the 4642 is available. I would have had the tech bring one out to replace my additional 4250 when he installed my DVR (8642). The 4250 sits atop a TV and due to its size has almost fallen more than once. A smaller box would be much better.

Having both the 8642 and 4250 I can concur with Wow_Dan about the similarities between the guide, but the guide on the 8642 (and I assume the 4642) is a bit more pleasing to look at IMO.

adam1991

join:2012-06-16
Columbus, OH
reply to byebyeisdn
said by byebyeisdn:

Looks like Ultra would be $25 more a month for our setup.

That cannot possibly be correct. Ultra TV hardware replaces the crappy standalone DVR/converter boxes you have now, so you have to subtract those costs out.

The minimum two-room Ultra setup around here is $25/month for the hardware, while the single standalone crappy HD DVR is $13/month.

alan92rttt

join:2012-02-27
reply to byebyeisdn
I had a HD DVR, HD box and 8/1 internet

I switched to ultra, moved up to 15/1 internet and I am paying less per month.

byebyeisdn

join:2002-06-29
Naperville, IL
reply to adam1991
said by adam1991:

said by byebyeisdn:

Looks like Ultra would be $25 more a month for our setup.

That cannot possibly be correct. Ultra TV hardware replaces the crappy standalone DVR/converter boxes you have now, so you have to subtract those costs out.

The minimum two-room Ultra setup around here is $25/month for the hardware, while the single standalone crappy HD DVR is $13/month.

The customer service agent must not have taken that into account. It sounds like from what you are saying that for 2 boxes, I would pay $25 more for Ultra, but that includes hardware, so I would subtract the $14 I pay now for two regular HD boxes? If so, $11 more a month might would definitely be a consideration.

byebyeisdn

join:2002-06-29
Naperville, IL
Turns out they gave us an incentive when I switched from Comcast for Cable TV, and the incentive would not carry over to Ultra packages. So, the $25 increase would take effect, at least for a year:( Oh well!


inchitown

@wideopenwest.com
reply to byebyeisdn
Just letting everyone who wants to go out and swap for the 4642 hd box, not all of them have the new looking guide. Actually only a handfull do, most have the same as the 4250hd


mix

join:2002-03-19
Utica, MI

1 edit
reply to byebyeisdn
I turned in my old Pace HD box today and received a new Cisco Explorer 4642HDC as a replacement. It is almost the same size as the box it replaced (which was manufactured in Dec. 2005). The menus and layout seem almost exactly the same, however the navigation of said menus is much faster. Changing/tuning channels seems quicker too. I'd equate it to getting a new faster computer but installing the same operating system you are used to.

The 4642HD measures: 13 5/8" x 9" x 3" at it's widest points.


RF

@wideopenwest.com
reply to WOW_Dan
Confirming what Dan said here. The 4642 menus and guide seems identical to the 4250. Navigation seems the same too. I don't any direct improvements over the old box.