Personal Video Recorders

Personal Video Recorders or Digital Video Recorders like TiVo are the coolest bit of lifestyle kit to come along since, what? The computer? The cellphone? The answering machine? These are like an answering machine for your TV. You can watch shows whenever the hell you want, skip over the annoying “messages” (commercials and late night talk show guests that bore you) and put shows on pause to answer the door, eat dinner, listen to the annoying messages on your phone answering machine, etc. We have a mixed household, with an unrepentant TV addict (me) and a devout TVphobe (my wife). The PVR allows me to record or pause what I want and watch it when she’s not around. I’ve only used ReplayTV, but TiVo is definitely the front-runner in the market now and the hands-down fave among geeks and gadget weenies ’cause of its use of Linux and a more hacker-friendly attitude from the manufacturer.

-- Gareth Branwyn  

TiVo
$200 – 400 (renewed DVRs as low as $50), $13 Monthly service
877-289-8486