Registered: Jun 2004
Originally posted by JPriller
TiVos are designed to run all the time. That makes sense - if you turn them off, they can't record shows for you ...
I've been a PC hardware guy for decades, and it's my experience that stuff is better left on all the time than turned on and off every day....
If noise is the problem then putting the TiVo in a case is okay, just make sure the ventilation is good so the TiVo doesn't overheat. ...anything higher than mid 40's is cause for concern.
[sorry, this got long]
Thanks for all the ideas... but you all seem to have misconstrued what I mean by "turn off". Yes, I want it to behave the same way my VCR behaves (so don't tell me its too expensive or whatever). If it's got a job to do it turns itself on! And when its done, it turns itself "off" (which is really more like standby).
I just measured the power consumption of my Toshiba DVD combo unit, I was pleasantly surprised to find it's only ~ 20Watts. But my gripe, of course, is that it's mainly waste for me (say 1 hour recording, 1 hour watching per day is over 90% waste) I pay twice for heat here because I typically have to pay again to air condition it away. Others I'm sure have a much lower waste ration, but my point is Tivo shouldn't force it on me. My gripe about the power goes hand-in-hand with the noise.
To put it in perspective, according to the sticker on my new refrigerator, it uses 500 and some odd kW per year, 20W continously is 175kW. I find it unconscionable that Tivo would put design such a product leaving me no recourse except to "pull the plug" (and hope that I remember to plug it back in when something is scheduled to record)
My power complaint isn't just my one little puny Tivo, it's the (presumably) tens of millions of units that they would like to have. The Tivo is, i see now, a profligate waster of standby power: "According to studies for the Energy Department by the Berkeley National Laboratories, standby wastes the equivalent of the power generated by 26 average-size power plants in the USA alone"
WHAT I think Tivo SHOULD DO proposal -- Level 1:
(This would be free / minor software changes)...
(Optionally) allow the user to turn off constant recording on suspend, and allow the disk to spin down. This MAY be enough of a power savings so that the fan wouldn't need to run when suspended(?).
WHAT I think Tivo SHOULD DO proposal -- Level 2 (the right way):
do an actual power management scheme. this may require in addition to software changes hardware mods. The fan and disk would not spin in suspend, there would be no need for cooling since the power drawn would be only ~5W.
Finally, regarding the off/on stress on electronics -- I think that may be an "old engineers tale", being an old engineer myself :-), maybe I should just say urban legend :-)
Anecdotally, I've had e.g. solid state TV's that have lasted well over 10 years, power cycled many many many times. My computers cycle daily for years. My computer's hard disk suspends itself dozens of times DAILY and I may use a drive for a couple of years. In other words, whether or not the stress shortens lifespan of electronics, I don't think it does so *materially*.
The temperature of my Toshiba DVD/combo unit says up to 59C when inside a cabinet (sounds hot) but outside the cabinet it hangs around 50C (ambient air temp ~ 80F), but still above the 40's that was suggested.
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