Having had a ReplayTV DVR from 2004-2007, then a DISH DVR from ’08-’09, I am less than impressed with the feature set of the Motorola U-verse offering. I had two shows stop recording, 10 minutes into them, without a visual indication that the recordings were ceasing (other than the red light turning off). I noticed it, and upon trying to restart the recordings, the machine informed me that the unit was out of space. I jumped in and started deleting several of the 19 “Little Bear” episodes that had quickly built up for my kid, and I was able to proceed with recording the rest of the two shows.
This confuses me, because several of the shows on my PC had the exclamation point, indicating they were next on the chopping block to be deleted. By default, the shows are recorded with the “Keep until space is needed” option, but the machine wasn’t deleting them as needed. A pity.
The inability to restrict the number of shows, for a series, is disappointing. I’ve now trained myself to go back in and change the save options, on shows we really want to keep, to “Keep until I delete”, just in case the machine actually starts deleting shows when it is supposed to do it. With the ReplayTV, and even the DISH, I could set a series to keep only four episodes or whatever. For the News, or talk shows, this is a great feature, and it really saves HD space.
I joined a U-verse users forum and other folks have had the same experiences, so it looks like I’m not “missing anything” with regard to tweaking my settings. Time will tell if AT&T (or Motorola) enhance the interface.
To end on an up note, I am happy with the quality of the recordings themselves. We’ve been watching “Planet Earth”, on DiscoveryHD, and it’s striking.