The 4th generation TiVo Premiere XL now records up to 150 hours of HD programming, which frees users from the issue of insufficient storage memory. However, you may still wanna copy TiVo to hard drive for enjoying the shows more freely on PC, editing your own tivo shows, or burning favorite TiVo series to DVDs. The freeware TiVo Desktop lets you copy shows from TiVo box to your PC.
I use Pavtube for coverting TiVo videos for my iPhone 4. It works very well and I haven’t really had any problems. Conversion speed seems fine and the videos look good on the iPad. I saw Pavtube mentioned in the TiVo forums as a good way to convert for the iPhone so I decided to try it. It’s much better than TiVo’s converter. TiVo’s converters for mobile devices are terrible.
Now you can edit and burn your tivo files. I like Windows Movie Maker and DVD Maker, both are free.
Part 1. Copy TiVo recordings to PC with TiVo Desktop
I believe it is an everyday thing for most TiVo users. And there are instructions by TiVo’s official site:
Transferring TiVo shows to your PC
Part 2. Convert TiVo to DVD Movie Maker compatible formats with Pavtube Video Converter.
The Pavtube Video Converter is much more than a TiVo to DVD Converter. It converts TiVo shows to iPod, iPod Touch, iPod Nano, iPhone 3G, iPhone 4, iPad, PSP, Gphone, Droid, Nokia, Samsung smart phones, Zune, Xbox, PS3 and media formats like *.avi, *.mpg, *.vob, *.mkv, *.wmv, *.dv, *.mov, *.mp3, *.m4a, *.wav, *.ogg, *.ac3, etc and handles with TV recordings of other formats *.ts, *.tp, *.trp files. When converting TiVo with Pavtube Video Converter, there are multiple choices. To retain original HD quality, you can ‘Directly Copy’ TiVo shows to MPEG/MPEG-TS files; to save storage, you can shrink the TiVo recordings by choosing a common SD video format; to burn CD album, you can extract audios from TiVo files; to cut the commercials, you can ‘trim’ the ads out; to eliminate the black edges, you can ‘crop’ the image and remain the part you like. Feel like giving it a shoot with the trial version of Pavtube Video Converter? I really liked how Pavtube trial version provided full access to the functions of the software. It allowed me to test the conversion quality. I knew without a doubt that your software will work for me, so I was not hesitant to purchase it at all.
You can clone TiVo to DVD as simple or as complex as you want.
Step 1. Input Media Access Key.
Launch Pavtube Video Converter, Click on the “Option” button, switch to TiVo tab, and enter your Media Access Key. Click “OK” to confirm.
Step 2: Import TiVo files for copying TiVo to DVD.
Now click “Add” to import all .tivo files, or you may drag and drop the *.tivo files to the window of TiVo to DVD Converter.
Step 3: Select an output format for burning TiVo shows to DVD in Windows DVD Maker.
Click on the pull down menu of “Format” to select output format. If you do not want to loss any quality, please select Copy-> Directly Copy so that the TiVo Converter will decrypt the shows to *.mpg or *.ts files. Nowadays the shows are normally HD 1920*1080 videos, which is too good to burn on a standard DVD. My advice is, compressing the HD TiVo shows so as to fit DVD 5/ DVD 9.
As I will copy TiVo to DVD with Windows DVD Maker, let’s take a look at the types of files which can be burned with Windows DVD Maker:
- Video files: *.asf, *.avi, *.dvr-ms, *.m1v, *.mp2v, *.mpe, *.mpeg, *.mpg, *.mpv2, *.wm, and *.wmv.
- Audio files: *.aif, *.aifc, *.aiff, *.asf, *.au, *.mp2, *.mp3, *.mpa, *.snd, *.wav, and *.wma.
- Picture files: *.bmp, *.dib, *.emf, *.gif, *.jfif, *.jpe, *.jpeg, *.jpg, *.png, *.tif, *.tiff, and *.wmf.
I used to select Common Video-> MPEG-2 Video(*.mpg), and then click “Settings” button to adjust audio and video parameters. The following picture shows detailed settings:
You may change the video “Size” to 960*540 provided that your source video is 16:9 and you don’t want outstretched image. If you’d like to keep Dolby Digital 5.1 sound, you got to change the Audio Codec to “ac3” and Channels to “5.1 Channels”. Other optional formats are *.asf, *.avi, *.wmv. The TiVo Converter displays the estimated file size and other information in the textbox. If you find the file size very huge, just set a smaller value in Video Bitrate box.
Step 4: Start converting TiVo for burning DVD.
Click “Convert” button and the TiVo converter will generate videos that are compatible with Windows DVD Maker. After conversion you can click the “Open” button next to output path to find converted recordings.
Additional tips– edit the TiVo recordings to keep proper length and size.
As I said, you can make the TiVo to DVD conversion as simple or as complex as you want. To cut off black edges, trim out unwanted ads, add watermark, replace audio, you may click on “Edit” button to enter editing window of TiVo to DVD Converter.
I. Cut unwanted black edges
Switch to Crop tab to cut unwanted edges. You can crop the video by adjusting the crop frame (drag the green dotted green square frame to circle the part you want to retain) or setting values (Left, Top, Width and Height) of crop area.
II. Trim out bothering commercial ads
Under ‘Trim’ tab you are allowed to cut out unwanted part of selected clip. To trim the video, simply type in desired time value in ‘Start’ and ‘End’ box and click ‘Set’ button. Or you can click left square bracket and right square bracket to set start and end time when playing the video.
Part 3. Copying TiVo to DVD with Windows DVD Maker.
After conversion you can burn the converted videos with Windows DVD Maker now:
Step 1. Click the “Start” button and select “Windows DVD Maker“ to run the program, then click the “Add items” button from the top menu and browse to the folder were the movies you want to burn are located. By default, they should be found in the “Videos” folder.
Step 2. Select the videos you want to burn and type the “Disc title”. Also, you may select the order in which the movies will be saved on DVD. To do that, select a movie and press the “Up” or “Down” button to change its order.
Step 3. If you want to, you can click the “Options” button and set things like the burning speed, the aspect ratio, the video format or you can choose if the DVD will have a menu or not. After you finished making the settings you want, click the “OK” button and then “Next”.
Step 4. At this step you can create a custom DVD menu or you can select a predefined one. To select a predefined menu, scroll the “Menu Styles” list and select the one you like most. You can customize it by pressing the “Customize Menu” button and making the settings you want. Also, you can change the menu text by clicking the “Menu text” button and typing the text you want for each button.
Step 5. When you have finished making all the customizations, click the “Burn” button.
First, Windows DVD Maker will encode the movie in the appropriate format and then it will burn it on DVD. Usually, the encoding process takes much more time than the burning so you have to patient.
Hope this guide helps.