A DVR allows you to easily and efficiently record and save programming directly from your television, just as how it used to be done with a VCR. The main difference is that DVRs are simple and intuitive to use – search through the interactive programming menu by category, show title, or broadcast time, and with the push of a button you can record any show you want – there's no need to fiddle with setting a start time or a stop time (although you can customize this if you like), or changing out clunky tapes, it is all handled automatically.
Advanced models can even transfer recorded programming to your computer or a flash storage device, letting you save shows for as long as you like. The technology is designed to make television viewing a pleasure again, rather than a chore with a fixed schedule. Once you have experienced television with a DVR, you will never want to go back!
Missing your favorite television shows and programming is very easy to do. The demands of work and family are obvious, but today there are so many entertainment formats competing for your time, it can be simple to miss an episode or two and be left helplessly behind. DVR offers a simple solution, allowing you to organize and schedule your viewing for when it is most convenient – watch shows when you want to, see episodes you would otherwise miss, all at the touch of a button.
Are you a fan of two shows that broadcast at the same time? No problem, a DVR allows you to negotiate schedule conflicts – watch one show while recording and saving the other for later. All DVRs allow you to watch live programming while recording at the same time, and some models allow you to do this while recording multiple programs. Customer satisfaction is built into the technology.
A DVR also optimizes your viewing habits by allowing you to fast forward through and skip entirely all of the commercials and wasted time within a typical broadcast. With the commercials removed, watching an hour long show only takes forty minutes! A three hour football game can be enjoyed in well under an hour if you are simply interested in skimming the highlights. Miss a subtle clue in the murder mystery you are watching? Rewind and see it again. Time is money, as they say, and the extra hours that a DVD returns to you every week is well worth the investment.
Most, if not all, cable and satellite television providers will offer to lease you a DVR unit as part of your subscription – the monthly fee for this is typically $10-20. While this is a modest fee in the short term, as the months add up the total can become quite expensive. Purchasing a DVR saves you the subscription fees and ends up saving you money in the end.
Sony, Toshiba, Samsung, and Panasonic each make several different models of DVRs, and they allow them to be re-branded with a cable or satellite service provider's name for many leased units – these products perform well with few technical problems. TiVo is a popular and familiar brand, and one of the first on the market.