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No SATA For This Comcast Monkey

According to Comcast, the SATA port on the back of my Motorola DTC3416 set-top box/DVR isn't yet active and there are no promises on when, or even if it will be activated. I have to admit I'm halfway considering testing this out for myself to make sure the info I got from Comcast is correct. I had a 500GB drive with a sleek case picked out already, and the entire rig would only cost about $170.

If anyone out there has already tried this with the DTC3416 lemme know. Also let me know if anyone is aware of any other way to hotrod this box with a bigger hard drive. I haven't had a chance to troll online for a solution for more storage for this thing, which I need in a big way. The little reading I have done suggests that current firmware might prevent the box from formatting a drive larger than the drive that's in there now, which is reputedly 160GB. Recording HD is cool, but eats a lot of disc space.

A number of you have written in on behalf of the image quality of the Series3 HD TiVo, which can accept two CableCARDs and thus record/watch two channels at once. I have heard before that CableCARD image quality is superior to the set-top boxes, but I have some issues with this approach. One, the box is eight hundred freaking bucks. That's a lot of scratch. Comcast of course, gave me the Motorola DVR for free and all I pay is the Comcast monthly DVR fee. It's around $12 per month. A la carte service through TiVo only gets below that monthly by a significant margin by pre-paying for three years to the tune of $299. I'm not dropping $1,100 into this, and even if I did I'd still be at only 32 hours of HD recording capability. Most of my HD movie viewing, which is my focus, is on Blu-ray and HD DVD now anyway.

Also, I'm kinda getting hooked on the On-Demand features, which as I understand it aren't accessible over CableCARD. It's way to easy find something interesting and entertaining to watch. And in spite of my earlier experiences with Comcast, I'm pleased with the image quality and the overall operation of the box I have now.

BTW, writing "SATA" above reminds me of a joke. Hear the one about the dyslexic devil worshipper? He sold his soul to Santa. Ha!

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