4/02/2009

DVR CZAR

As I have mentioned before - I am a passionate TV watcher. I don't think I'm lazy (as the "couch potato" tag implies) - I think I appreciate the form of entertainment it provides. In fact, I believe that if I had more time to watch TV - that the supply of quality entertainment would be able to fill that time. (I think there is A LOT more garbage on TV than quality -- but there is just so much to programming out there that there still more quality programming out there than I have time to watch).

Anyway - enter the DVR. Clearly a revolution for passionate TV watchers everywhere. "More efficient television watching" couldn't be more up my alley... So much so - that I drive my wife crazy about managing the "efficiency" within the "efficiency producing machine..."

Here's what I mean...

When you record a high volume of television - but don't have the equal amount of time - it puts pressure on the storage capacity of your DVR. Things build up and should too much time elapse, the system will erase programs at the end of your queue. I'm a fan of constantly cleaning up our DVR to ensure this doesn't happen. I can't explain why I feel less stress when the DVR is at 65% full rather than 88% full... I just do.

Below are 5 Rules that I would recommend other want-to-be DVR CZARS:
1) Any daily program (PTI, Oprah, Ellen, The Daily Show, Conan, etc) needs to be maintained twice a week at a minimum. Erase the ones you don't care about - save the ones with good guests - but stay on top of it. 5 hours per show per week is a lot of "fat." Stay on it.
2) Be selective with HD Programs. 24, Lost, any show on Discovery - totally worth it. 30 minute comedys - no way. Just no need.
3) Have an expiration date. If there are shows that have been on your DVR for over, say, a month - I have to imagine the odds of you really prioritizing to watch it after that amount of time is REALLY low. Sports, especially, have an expiration date - closer to 5 days. I'm not saying you delete it on the spot - but I'd definitely suggest removing the "save until you delete" feature if the expiration date is reached.
4) No movies. There are enough movie sources out there (Cable, Premium, OnDemand, Netflix) without the need of your DVR to do it as well. 2 hours+ investment in front of the TV takes a lot of time to schedule. I've made the mistake and DVR'd movies I wanted to see - they stayed on the DVR for months - only to feel stupid that when I actually watched it - I used HBO on Demand (I was in the bedroom when the movie was on the DVR in the living room).
5) If sharing - Be responsible for your own programs. Examples: I watch PTI. Amy watches Oprah. I watch 24. Amy watches Gossip Girl. We both watch How I Met Your Mother. The only thing I am comfortable deleting is PTI and 24. This is my responsibility. Even though I may see 4 "Ellens" on the DVR (all with B list guests) - I can't touch it. Amy needs to be the one who deletes that.

As my "savvy" as DVR CZAR matures - I will try and enlighten others.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

OR... set your Tivo to only keep so many shows... keep 10 30 rock, 2 Letterman, 5 Rescue Me, etc.

Not George said...

Or just find a DVR Expander that works with your Tivo / DVR!

http://www.usatoday.com/tech/columnist/edwardbaig/2008-08-06-tivo-dvr-memory_N.htm

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