Is DVR/PVR Worth the Risk?

May 25 2007

We here at MissingRemote often talk about all the benefits that come with a DVR/PVR, but rarely do we get a chance to clearly show there are some cons to it. Well, this past week I was given a clear reminder as to the danger that will always exist when you rely 98% of the time on your DVR (in my case, a Media Center Computer).

A little about my usage history. I don't know when anything is on live except for basketball games, and that's only because ESPN will show the time on their homepage. Other than that, I couldn't tell you the different time/day of Lost compared to The Ultimate Fighter...and those are some of my FAVORITE shows. Ask me about a show I care less about and as they say in Micky Blue Eyes, "Foggettaboutit!"


Remember this? I don't :-(


For the most part, my Vista Media Center has worked near flawlessly. I can't remember missing a show due to a crash or any other problem...until this week. The Event: The biggest soccer match of the year (that's actually televised in the US), the UEFA Cup Finals Championship. Of course it is on mid-day, but no problem, I set my Media Center a week in advance. The day came, I know the game happened and I spent the remainder of the day avoiding any sports website and ignoring anyone who might have mentioned the game.

Now, the joy of having a PVR/DVR, is that you just go about your daily business without worry because, all your shows are being recorded. So I worked all day, worked out afterwards, then got home and settled around 9pm, ready and excited to watch the game I had been pining for all day. So I start Media Center, and look in Recorded TV, and sure enough, there's my UEFA Cup Soccer Game. All is well in the world I thought...that is, until I pressed play.

Instead of seeing two of the world's greatest (arguably) club soccer teams, I was greeted with a Baseball show?!?! No worries, I set it to record an hour extra of the game, so this must just be running late. But then it kept going. And going. And then when that ended, Boxing began. I'm an avid Boxing fan, so I knew this would be long, and then it finally set in my head--I'M NOT GOING TO GET TO WATCH THE GAME. That didn't stop me from fast forwarding through 3 hours of boxing, just to be sure.

To this day I have no idea whose fault it was--was it Media Center's Guide? ESPN's original time frame? Me for not quadruple checking? Who knows. All I know is I missed a great (arguable) game, one which would never have happened if DVR/PVR didn't exist. Sure this is a rare incident, and maybe only the 2nd or 3rd time this has ever happened (and I've been using Media Center since the original), but the fact remains it happened, and by the time I realized it, it was too late.

I guess my moral of this story, is definitely enjoy your PVR/DVR, but understand the risk involved...because you just may miss that once a year event you've been waiting for!

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