Review: Tablo (4th Generation) Over-the-Air (OTA) DVR 2024





The new 4th generation Tablo DVR has been out for a few months. This is a major departure from previous Tablo DVRs, mainly by being free to use after you buy it, unlike the subscription that was required in the past. So, how has it held up over the last few months? Today, we are going to dive into this DVR and give our updated review.

Other than being subscription-free after you buy it, how does this compare to the older Tablo DVRs? Read on for more.

Here is our full YouTube review of the new Tablo DVR from when it was first released:

This DVR is a solid two-tuner DVR that lets you record up to two programs at once. It comes as a standalone model for $99.99 or for a little more with an antenna. You can also get a four-tuner model for $139.99.

The big new feature on this DVR: Tablo will add free live streaming channels into its live TV guide. There is also a new app that is available on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV/Google TV, and iOS mobile platforms, as well as most smart TVs and mobile devices. Apple TV, Samsung, and Vizio are expected to be added later this year. (Yes, they say both are still coming.)

The new app mixes both your antenna and a collection of free streaming content into a single location. It also helps you quickly find what is on in a similar style to YouTube TV with recommended content. Since launch, multiple new free live TV channels have been added.

The new DVR comes with enough storage for 50+ hours of video. You can also add an external hard drive for extra storage.

The one downside is the fact that this Tablo DVR only works in your house, which is unlike older models that let you stream it anywhere. Tablo says this is because of the high image quality compared to older models, making it hard to stream online. Tablo has said they are looking at possibly adding the ability to stream outside of your home.

The Bottom Line

Since this DVR was originally released, it has been greatly improved. New free content and bug fixes have made it a solid DVR choice.

If you have an old Tablo DVR with a lifetime subscription, there is no reason to upgrade to this model. If you are thinking about getting a DVR at an affordable price with no subscription fee, this may be the DVR for you.

Tablo’s new DVR is easy to use. The setup is quick and easy. The guide is also easy to use, and it works with most popular streaming players.

If you want a new Tablo DVR, this is a soldi option. If you have an old one, I wouldn’t upgrade, especially if you have a lifetime pass because the older DVRs let you stream outside of your house.

The new Tablo DVR solution features:

  • Whole-home connectivity—One Tablo device delivers live and recorded TV wirelessly to any screen in your home, including smart TVs, streaming devices, smartphones, and tablets, via Wi-Fi or Ethernet.
  • TV antenna placement optimization—The new Tablo mobile app helps consumers set up an antenna and Tablo device, so they get the best reception and most channels possible for their home’s location to broadcast towers.
  • Flexible recording storage options—The Tablo hardware features 128GB of onboard storage for over 50 hours of HD recording capacity right out of the box. Consumers can expand recording capacity by up to 1,000 HD hours thanks to support for USB hard drives up to 8TB.
  • Free robust guide data and content discovery—Along with episode and series synopses, cover art and metadata for programs airing over the next two weeks, Tablo’s rich guide data drives powerful yet easy-to-use advanced DVR features including:
    • One-touch series recording
    • Advanced recording options
    • Automatic extended recording time on sports and other live events
    • Automatic avoidance of duplicate recordings
  • Apps for every device—Tablo apps make it easy for TV lovers to watch, pause, and record network broadcast TV and free live streaming channels on:
    • Streaming media devices from Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV
    • Smart TVs running Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV operating systems
    • iOS/Android smartphones and tablets

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