First and foremost, you want to get the most out of your Tivo HD. So if you are truly thinking about buying this DVR, you are definitely going to want to have a home network. By connecting your Tivo HD to your home network you have access to Amazon videos on demand, and if you are a Netflix customer, you will have access to your instant streaming movies.
With Tivo HD hooked to your network you will have a slew of other goodies such as access to your photobucket photos, and a gob of other really cool features.
Likely you have a home network, but not all have a spare HDMI cable. If you want the quality of your Tivo HD to deliver the best picture possible you are going to want to hook your Tivo HD DVR to your HDTV using HDMI cables. Unfortunately HDMI cables do not come with the standard Tivo HD box, so you will have to purchase this cable separately. I highly recommend Monster HDMI cables.
You can pretty much chuck the color coded AV cables that come with the system. Or you can save them... whatever your choice.
Now in order for Tivo HD to fully function, you unfortunately are going to need Cable Cards. Fear not folks, the whole Cable Card ordeal is not as horrible as it sounds. Unfortunately Cablevision has yet to allow their customers to install these cards themselves. I think it's highway robbery, but if you want Tivo HD, you're going to have to call your Cable company and tell them you need Cable Cards for Tivo HD. Ask for the single Multimedia card though. That way they can only charge you for one card, and not 2 cable cards.
Before Cable comes to your home you want to set up the DVR to your HDTV.
Doing this is simple and requires little work. You will need to unplug your cable box, and plug your cable line into the slot marked Cable on the back of the DVR.
Once you do that, plug in the Tivo HD to a wall socket, and plug your HDMI cable into the back of Tivo, and into an available HD slot on your HDTV.
Tivo should turn on. You now just follow the on screen messages. Next you will need an Ethernet cable (you have to buy it, it does not come with Tivo HD) to plug into your router. You have the option to hook up using a phone line, but trust me, hooking your DVR up to your network bring many more features to your DVR.
I simply followed the on screen prompts, and once I was done, all I had to do was wait for the Cable guy to get to my house to plug in the Cable Card.
After about 20 minutes of having the cable guy in our home, Tivo HD was up and running remarkably. We do not have any issues with the picture clarity, and we are glad to have gotten rid of the dreaded Cablevision Scientific DVR box.
Tivo HD may sound difficult to set up, and it is annoying that you have to pay your cable company to have someone come in and stick a card into your Tivo's slot, but the DVR is well worth it, and you'll be thankful you switched.