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  1. Member
    Join Date: Apr 2012
    Location: Long Island NY
    Search PM
    Hi, Haven't been into this site for a couple years. Switching from Cablevision to FIOS Quantum next week with multi rooms DVRs.

    Can I record to my stand alone dvr? Will the picture be full or squashed.?

    Watching Video on demand ,can u fast foward, pause etc?

    Can you record on Demand, or do u need a stabilizer?


    Any answers will be appreciated. Bill
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  2. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2006
    Location: United States
    Search Comp PM
    Maybe you should clarify what you mean by a "full" picture or a "squashed" picture when describing the picture provided by the cable box's SD connections.

    Is a "full" picture one with matching 4:3 aspect ratio video inside (people look normal)? Is "squashed" a 4:3 picture with anamorphically compressed 16:9 aspect ratio video inside (people look too thin)? Is a picture where a 16:9 video has letterbox bars added to the top and bottom so that only part of a 4:3 frame is used to display the picture considered to be "full" or "squashed"?
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  3. Member
    Join Date: May 2014
    Location: Tennessee, US
    Search Comp PM
    Originally Posted by Bigbill View Post
    Hi, Haven't been into this site for a couple years. Switching from Cablevision to FIOS Quantum next week with multi rooms DVRs.

    Can I record to my stand alone dvr? Will the picture be full or squashed.?

    Watching Video on demand ,can u fast foward, pause etc?

    Can you record on Demand, or do u need a stabilizer?
    I'll second the request for better info and descriptions.

    The only outputs on the FIOS cable box that deliver HD are HDMI and component out. Composite and S-video cannot carry HD. Many FIOS boxes have the analog outputs disabled.

    Standalone "dvr"? If you found a stand alone HD video recorder in the U.S.A., let us know where. If it's a standalone SD DVD recorder, it won't record HD. On HD cable boxes the SD outputs send only a 4:3 image, inside of which is a letterboxed image for wide-screen pics and a letterboxed-plus-pillars for old 4:3 pics. Many cable stations encrypt their signal with copy-once protection, so you can often record it on SD DVD-R's (as 4:3) but you can't copy it or burn it to disc. Some SD recorders won't record copy-protected broadcasts at all. All programs recorded to your FIOS HD DVR are copy-protected.

    In other words, you'll get pretty much the same thing you got with Cablevision, but some of the local stations and features will be gone and others will change. Make sure you can still get all your favorites, if you have any. And if you're getting distorted SD recordings thru your old DVD-R, you're doing something wrong. The 4:3 images ain't so great thru composite or s-video, but they're not distorted. If you want analog HD from an HD box, you need component cables.

    I spend a lot of time with relatives in L.I. They hated Cablevision. Then they hated FIOS even more. They're back to CableVision now.
    Last edited by LMotlow; 17th Jul 2014 at 22:27.
    - My sister Ann's brother
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  4. Member
    Join Date: Jul 2001
    Location: NY
    Search Comp PM
    switched from Time Warner to Fios and never looked back

    1. I am still on an analog tv set. I can record from the fios HD dvr box to (obviously) my 4:3 dvd recorder via the S-video jack on the back and regardless of channel or content have never had an issue with anything being blocked (disabled) or from macrovision.

    about the picture
    the dvr box in the settings asks if you are on an HD or analog 4:3 set. I have never had any picture squashing issues from the box. Sometimes the channels themselves are not broadcast correctly (well sort of)-- for example normal Fox 5 tv will appear like the old days for news shows (like Good Day New York for example) 4:3 but you can see the channel has it set and zooms in to give you the 4:3 picture. However if I change the channel to the HD version of Fox tv I see it is in a 1:85:1. So if that is important to you, you want to make sure you get the HD dvr (because their normal box will NOT get the HD channels). Other times regardless of an SD or HD channel version, it is broadcast in the letterbox format (like Sons of Anarchy on FX). Though I find it interesting that channels like ABC do the zoom deal like Fox does and the HD version displays the correct ratio. I say this because for a massively popular show like Once Upon a Time, one would assume they would have the SD version still display in a letterboxed ratio but they do not.



    On demand:
    this varies and is all dependent on the channel provider. Some of them like HBO or Showtime DO allow you to fast forward, but others like Fox does not

    and as mentioned I have recorded from normal channels, cable pay channels, pay per view, on demand, "in theaters now", etc and have never had any issue or need for a stabilizer/tbc-- HOWEVER -I also have never purchased any sporting events, so I could not tell you if those events have anything protected in the stream
    Last edited by mazinz; 17th Jul 2014 at 22:35.
    want to see some true 3d clips, custom figures, some hardcore music and other crap?? Check out my youtube page www.youtube.com/mazinz2
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  5. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2006
    Location: United States
    Search Comp PM
    My experiences with cable TV in general agree with what mazinz wrote. My local over-the-air channels tend to have the sides cropped for the SD version of their channels on cable so there are no black bars. ...but many cable-only channels have changed what they do and typically present material that was originally 4:3 using the wrong aspect ratio whether you use the SD or HD version of the channel. The channel itself is to blame, not the cable provider or the cable box.

    For example, I recently watched a movie on an HD channel that was in 4:3 aspect ratio. At one time this channel would have pillarboxed the movie for the HD version of the channel and shown in its original 4:3 aspect ratio on the SD version of the same channel. Instead they stretched to 16:9 to fill the screen on the HD version, while on the SD version of the same channel, the movie was still stretched to a 16:9 aspect ratio and then letterboxed for display on a SD TV. The cable box I have (I'm not a FIOS customer) automatically letterboxes HD channels when viewing them on its composite video or coax connections, so there is just no getting around the problem when recording this channel on a DVD recorder.

    On the other hand, I recently watched a SD channel (there is no HD version available) where 16:9 material is anamorphically squashed to fill a 4:3 frame with no letterbox bars. I have an HDTV and actually prefer that since I can stretch the picture to its proper 16:9 aspect ratio using the TV's controls, although someone with an analog 4:3 TV might not be happy about it.
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