Monday, April 28, 2008
It used to be that one of the failings of digital video recorders was that their storage capacities couldn't be expanded on. That was perhaps the one disadvantage that digital video recorders had when compared to the VCR's that they largely replaced.
There is a solution to this though now that there are higher end digital video recorders available. These high end digital video recorders, which are also often called media center computers, have the advantage of being able to transfer stored video from their hard drives onto digital video discs. This makes them a lot better for archiving your favorite recordings. There is one problem with these devices though- they cost upwards of one thousand dollars a piece and often up to ten thousand dollars a piece!
Now there's a way to expand the storage capacity of the more mainstream (and more affordable) digital video recorders like the ones from TiVo. This ability to expand comes in the form of hard drive replacement kits and add ons that from an online company called weaKnees.
weaKnees provides a variety of upgraded kits that fit a variety of TiVo digital video players made by a variety of different manufacturers. This company claims that the hard drives on TiVo digital video recorders go bad over a period of time and need to be replaced in order to ensure continuing reliability from the devices. weaKnees generally recommends that hard drives be replaced if they're over eighteen months old, but acknowledges that that's just a good rule of thumb rather than a hard and fast rule. Real lifetime of a component like a hard drive will depend on use and how the device as a whole is treated.
weaKnees provides two different types of upgrade kits. One gives you the option of replacing your old hard drive completely with a new one of your choice. This new hard drive can either be the same size as the old one, in the case of the customer who wants to replace a drive that's simply worn out, or it can be a larger one in order to improve capacity. This type of replacement will cause you to lose all of the video that you have recorded along with personal settings, but weaKnees offers the option of transferring the contents of an old hard drive onto your newer one if you want. If you don't opt to have that done, the kits are designed for you to install yourself with a minimum of electronics knowledge. On some models it's possible to replace your old hard drive with two three hundred gigabyte drives for a total storage capacity of six hundred gigabytes!
The other option is simply to add a hard drive to the unit if there's room. This is a good way to expand the existing capacity of your TiVo Digital Video Recorder. On some models it's possible to add up to three hundred gigabytes of storage capacity. Which translates into massive number of hour of video that you can store.
weaKnees definitely makes it so that you can get the most out of a Digital Video Recorder.