Review: Rogers NextBox 3.0

As part of my migration of phone and Internet services to Rogers, I got an almost free Rogers NextBox 3.0 as part of the deal. So, what’s a NextBox 3.0? It’s a set top box made by Cisco Systems (it’s model 9865HD) that not only allows you access to Rogers Cable TV, but it’s a 1 TB PVR. That’s roughly 120 hours of storage. My old Rogers PVR (which was a Cisco Systems 8642HD) had 160GB of storage which worked out to about 19 hours or HD recording so the extra space is welcome. Compared to other Rogers PVRs, such as the original NextBox that this one replaced, it physically has a smaller footprint so it eats up less space in your audio/visual shelf. It also boots way faster. My old PVR took about 20 minutes to boot. This one takes about 5 minutes. That’s something I really appreciate.

One of the key features that the NextBox 3.0 has going for it is the fact that it has 8 tuners in it. That means that you can record 8 programs at the same time. Now I can never conceive of ever doing that, but the fact that I can record two or three things at the same time will keep myself and my wife happy as we won’t have to argue over what gets recorded again. In terms of the user interface on the NextBox 3.0, there does not appear to be many changes made to the Programming Guide. But everything is much faster. Changing channels is faster and navigating through the Programming Guide is faster as well. My last PVR had apps that were installed on it. This one has similar apps. Specifically weather, an app for my Rogers Home Phone that has call logs and controls for voice mail among other things, a search app, an app that shows different mixes of shows such as sports for example, and an app that allows me to subscribe to additional channels. Speaking of apps, you can program this PVR remotely from your smartphone using the Rogers Anyplace TV Home Edition app for iOS and Android so that you don’t miss the latest episode of True Blood.

Any downsides? Well, my old PVR had more connections such as an S-Video connection that are simply absent on the NextBox 3.0. That may not be a big deal if you connect it via HDMI (which is what I would recommend). But if you have some old school TV hardware, you’re going to be stuck with RCA jacks and the signal quality (or lack thereof) that they provide. There is also the omission of the AC outlet that was on my previous PVR. That was handy to power other audio/video equipment. But chances are unless you’re some sort of audio/video geek, none of that will matter to you.

The NextBox 3.0 is $500 to buy and $25.07  a month to rent from Rogers. Though if you’re renting an older Rogers PVR, you might be able to swap it out for a NextBox 3.0. Check out Rogers.com, your local Rogers retailer as well as Future Shop and Best Buy to get your hands on one.

 

45 Responses to “Review: Rogers NextBox 3.0”

  1. Good Day,
    Thank you for posting your review. May I ask you a question about this box as I may consider this service with Rogers. Is it true these type of set top boxes have to be left on 24×7? Similar to a cable modem but unlike a 9watt cable modem these things consume 60watts 24×7. Is that also true?
    Thankyou
    Bob

  2. A.M. Starratt Says:

    We have elderly dvrs. Which allow us to skip commercials or double-time playback (does anyone really want to experience real time playback of the Survivor contests?). How does this compare in these particular features? Not to mention being able to make our own dvds.

    • >How does this compare in these particular features?
      Yes, it has I believe five fast forward speeds as well skip back 10 seconds in case you overshoot. As well I just read you can press Page + to skip ahead three minutes, but I haven’t tried that for myself.

  3. Michael Young Says:

    We have recently “upgraded” to a NextBox 3 with Rogers. The previous model PVR allowed us to copy material saved on the PVR to a VCR, but in fact you could also burn a DVD. I have just had an exchange with a Rogers technician who informed me that this feature was not available on the NextBox 3. If this is correct, are you aware of any way in which I could download some of my NextBox saves to share with my non-resident family members?

  4. Michael Young Says:

    Yes.

    • From all of the images of the backs of Cisco pvrs (which includes incarnations of NextBox) there appears to be the standard coax outlets for video and audio; http://www.rogers.com/web/support/tv/equipment/38?setLanguage=en specifically mentions component cables to attach to tvs. Theoretically, you should be able to connect the NextBox to your dvr and from your dvr to your tv on a temporary basis and copy to your dvr (or direct to a dvd). If you don’t have any component cables, they aren’t difficult to find: https://www.google.ca/webhp?gfe_rd=cr&ei=t3G5VLzABamC8Qfcz4CICg#q=tv+component+cables+ottawa .

      Does that help?

      • Michael Young Says:

        Thank you for the suggestion. I sort of thought that that was where you were going when you asked about the HDMI outlet. Your proposal makes sense, theoretically, and I will let you know what happens when I try to implement it. Thanks again for your assistance.

      • You are very welcome, Michael. My husband is the real expert in the family, but knowledge does rub off. We are contemplating getting a NextBox; we have analog service and they keep on cutting channels from our package, much to our great annoyance (and no compensatory reduction in the bills). The main stumbling block is the inability to skip commercials efficiently, though I understand you can now skip forward 3 minutes. With our dvrs each press of the skip forward button gives us 30 seconds, then, according to the machine, you can skip back 5 seconds for each press or 20 seconds. Whichever machine it is, we can skip all of the commercials pretty efficiently. Oh the horror, oh the dread, if we have to watch any commercials!

  5. Hey Michael, were you able to figure out the recording from the Nextbox? I am now having the exact same issue and came across this article. Thanks.

    • Michael Young. Says:

      I did not put the suggestion to the acid test and actually try it, so I cannot gurantee that it’s the right answer but the best advice I received was to connect the cable that would otherwise be used to connect the NextBox to the TV and instead connect it to the DVD recorder, (and I presume take a lead from the recorder back to the TV so that you can see what you’re recording – but that’s only a guess)

      Let me know if it works.

      • Michael Young Says:

        I keep dropping the signal in my out-of-line-of-sight condo bedroom. Any suggestions/recommendations?

        _____

  6. Any issues with buying these machines used- I have seen them on Kijiji etc for around $250, if they have been bought from a third party retaiker, are they locked to a certain account? Tbanks

    • I wrote a story about buying a used terminal and how to avoid getting burned. Check this out: https://itnerd.wordpress.com/2014/07/05/a-follow-up-to-my-recent-rogers-install/

      • Thanks! We’re going to look at it this week. So my plan is to move my old box Erxplorer 4642hd up to our bedroom tv(an old 13″ analog Samsung)which has been losing channels due to change to digital, and use the netbox 3.0 downstairs with our main tv. The old box is a rental from Rogers. Any flaws in this plan? Btw, how much do you charge to deal with Rogers for me? You seem to have much better luck than we do 🙂

      • I don’t see anything wrong with that plan personally. There’s nothing there that would cause anything to go sideways except for Rogers to perhaps bill you for an outlet that you don’t have (as that has happened to us). Hopefully that will not be an issue for you.

        As for dealing with Rogers, here’s some free advice. Be clear with what you are asking for, stay on the line and reconfirm that what you asked for has been done, always ask for a case number when you’re done dealing with them. and finally, watch for your next bill to see if anything went sideways. IF it does, call back and escalate using the case number you got earlier. That seems to work for me.

      • Good point about the extra outlet, I think we got a couple when we had Rogers VIP and they were free. We are not VIP anymore, so that might be an issue. Thanks for the Rogers tips, my wife, who is much more patient than I am usually deals with them. Took her a few months to cancel Shomi.

      • No worries. Always happy to help!

  7. Hi and thanks to all for this opportunity to solve issues 🙂

    So at the least I can still simply connect my Nextbox to my VCR and record shows.. or if I have a DVD-recorder, do it that way. This question is:

    Can some programmer upgrade Nextbox and or Rogers software so that it can save shows to USB drives?

    I put in a USB flash drive and the PVR software said “You have inserted a memory, do you want to format it?” (something like that) I said yes and it replied that the device didn’t respond correctly – but it shows that I knows what I am doing!

    Where do we find the software guru who can do this, and get Rogers or whomever is our service provider to enlist their services so that we all are super-happy-campers?

    Thanks googols in advance!
    Teo

  8. We just discovered a problem with the Nextbox 3.0: we had it set to record an old show and to make sure we got all the episodes we were recording reruns as well. Then we forgot about it. Now the entire memory is full and we need to clear some space to record the Rugby World Cup. Here’s the rub, to clear the disk you have to delete each recording individually. With almost 800 episodes that comes down to a few man hours of button mashing.

    0 points for user interface.

  9. Steve macdonald Says:

    Why can’t I record channel 3which is global tv on my next box ?all other channels record but global

  10. Hello: Can you tell me if it’s possible to connect a Rogers PVR 3.0 to a RCA standard definition TV? I was using my Rogers PVR 2.0 but was told by Rogers customer service that I could use a PVR 3.9 as well.
    So I picked one up and disconnected my PVR 2.0 and connected my PVR 3.0 to the RCA standard TV. However I received no picture or sound.
    The only thing I can think of as to why this occurred is because I have the component cables (red, white, yellow) plugged into the wrong ports on the back of the television. When I unhooked the PVR 2.0 and hooked up the PVR 3.0 in its’ place, I did not change the location of the component cables on the back of the TV. I’m wondering if I plug the component cables into the other 4 ports on the back of the TV, will I receive picture and sound. Appreciate any feedback into my problem.
    Thank you.

    • As far as I know it should work. You may want to reach out to Rogers on that.

      • Thanks Itnerd.
        I have spoke to three or four different Rogers tech support people and all said it will work. However each time they guided me (individually) or helped me along in setting up the connection, I still received no picture or sound, no matter whether I put it on input 1 or input 2 on the TV. The last one suggested I try switching PVR’s to see if that would work but he also said the way I had it hooked up, should have provided a picture and sound.
        As I think about it now, I don’t think there was or is any difference in the way I have the PVR 2.0 connected and the way I was told to connect the PVR 3.0 to the standard TV. I would think they shouldn’t be connected the same way. I mean there should be a difference in some area, be it the RCA cables where they are connected, etc.

      • Strange. I have to admit that I have not tried this myself. If I can carve out time this weekend, I will try it and let you know.

      • Thank you. That would be greatly appreciated.

  11. It would be great to finally find out if this set-up, PVR 3.0 to standard TV, can be successfully done.

  12. stupid question…. can i use the rogers netbox without cable? i have an hd antenna on my roof and want to record shows from my ota antenna. is it possible? thanks in advance, m….

  13. Hi Hoarce7 and itnerd,

    Would you please tell me if you ever figured out if the Rogers netbox 3.0 HD PVR works with a SD TV?

    thanks

    • There is a 4:3 SDTV option on my box. So my guess is yes.

      • Hello It Nerd: Actually yes I was able to successfully connect my Rogers Nextbox 3.0 to my standard TV.

        Thank you.

        Regards,

        Geoff

        ________________________________

      • Thank you so much hoarce7. I really appreciate this! I am going to be helping my little brother over the phone and I hope I can guide him correctly. I hope I can pick your brain if need be in the near future.

  14. On my old Rogers PVR 2.0 I was able to press the forward button twice and freeze-frame something I was watching, for example when watching a baseball game, and seeing a throw-out at first base, I could go back and watch frame by frame. Does anyone know how to enable freeze-frame on the Rogers Nextbox 3.0 ?

  15. I found the Explorer 8300 HD much easier to use. Yes, you get many more features, recording space, etc. with the Nextbox. However, the rookie who designed the muting software messed up. On the old PVR, when you pressed ‘mute’, the words automatically started scrolling across the screen. With the Nextbox, you need to go through several steps to get the words to appear on the screen and then a number of steps to take the feature off. I called Rogers support and the techie told me that many customers leave the scrolling words on all the time…LOL. As a result of the hoops one needs to go through, we never use the feature. Utterly ridiculous.

  16. […] Review: Rogers NextBox 3.0 […]

  17. Hi, I’m trying to get into the Diagnostic Menu on the Cisco 9865 from Rogers, I’m following the procedure in the Cisco manual for the 9865 but I don’t get the diagnostic menu to appear. Has Roger’s disabled this function?

  18. […] Review: Rogers NextBox 3.0 […]

  19. […] 8. Review: Rogers NextBox 3.0 […]

  20. […] Review: Rogers NextBox 3.0 […]

  21. Rob Stern Says:

    in our area, rogers is now moving everyone over to Ignite, which is an internet based system. They will have to take back our old PVRs to install a new Hub and say they can’t migrate any recordings. I have my old nextbox 3.0 with ++ recordings some that are personal that i want to save. Is there a way to download 3.0 recordings to a computer from the PVR ? any way to output or access the recordings within the device. the model is 9865 by Cisco with ports on the back: HDMI, SATA, RCA, 2 USB 2.0, optical audio out, and Ethernet

    • There is no way to pull recordings that I know of from a PVR. You may want to check dslreports.com in case there is a way that I am not aware of.

  22. […] part of my upgrade to Rogers Ignite is that my Rogers NextBox 3.0 got replaced with […]

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