Record Your Favorite Shows With an OTA DVR

Most of us live busy lives and may not be home in time to watch our favorite TV shows. If you have an over the air antenna you can record many television shows using an OTA DVR. It is an excellent way to record free HD television and then watch it in your spare time. There are several types of OTA DVR’s available on the market. We will look at some of the best and compare what may be a good solution for you.

What is an OTA DVR?

An over the air DVR is a device that will record a broadcast television show onto a hard drive or storage drive for later viewing. You can also rewind, pause and skip through commercials. Many OTA DVR’s allow you to schedule your recordings by show, date and time using their built-in electronic program guide.

OTA Antenna

The first step to recording over the air television is to buy an OTA antenna. You should check to see what channels are in your area first. This will give you an idea if buying an OTA antenna is worth it. In some cases, you may live too far away from the broadcast towers to receive any stations. You can use our handy Station Locator Tool to find out.

TV Station Locator Tool

Types of Over The Air DVR’s

Amazon Fire TV Recast

Fire TV Recast, over-the-air DVR, 500 GB, 75 hours

The Fire TV Recast will record your favorite programs using an over the air antenna. You can then play them back over WiFi using most mobile devices, tablets, Fire TV, Fire Stick or Echo Show. There are no monthly fees and you can schedule recordings using their channel guide. You can record up to 5 shows simultaneously. It works seamlessly with the Fire TV and Fire Sticks interface.


Size: 7.1” x 7.1” x 2.9” (180 mm x 180 mm x 73 mm)

Weight: 2.4 lbs (1066 g)

Processor: Dual Core

ATSC Tuners: 2 Tuners or 4 Tuners

Transcoders: (for playback): 2

Storage: 500 GB up to 75 hours of HDTV or 1TB up to 150 hours of HDTV

Memory: 2 GB

Wi-Fi Connectivity: 2.4 G Wi-Fi 2×2 Wi-Fi b/g/n and 5 G Wi-Fi 2×2 Wi-Fi a/n/ac

Ports: 1 x Type A USB 3.0 (does not support storage), TV Antenna Input, Gigabit Ethernet, Power

To find out more see our full article on the Amazon Fire TV Recast

Where to Buy:

The Amazon Fire TV Recast is available at these retailers.



TiVo BOLT VOX 500 GB, DVR & Streaming Media Player, 4K UHD, Now with Voice Control (TCD849500V)

The TiVo BOLT 500 GB DVR is an excellent solution to recording OTA TV shows. TiVo was one of the pioneers of this technology. They developed one of the first DVR’s and then everyone else copied them. They still make quality products and their new BOLT DVR is no exception. The TiVo Bolt allows you to record 4 shows simultaneously with your OTA antenna. The base model will allow you to record up to 75 hours of HD content. If you need more storage you can always add an external hard drive or NAS unit. This box will also work with a cable television. Subscription fees may apply. It has integrated online streaming capabilities. So you can enjoy all of your streaming apps like Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Go, Hulu and many more. This box is very powerful and is capable of playing 4K resolution videos.
Record Your Favorite Shows With an OTA DVR


  • Recording capacity: 75 HD hours
  • Hard drive size: 500 GB
  • Video output: 480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p, 4K UHD
  • Ethernet port: 1 0 / 1 0 0 / 1 0 0 0 Mbps
  • Coax connector
  • Optical audio out
  • Analog audio
  • HDMI: 4K UHD, 1080p (24/60)
  • External storage port (eSATA)
  • USB 2.0 ports: 2
  • CableCARD slot
  • Built-in WiFi (AC dual band, N, G, B, A)

Record Your Favorite Shows With an OTA DVR

  1. CableCARD Slot
  2. Remote Finder
  3. Coax (digital cable, ATSC, MoCA)
  4. Optical audio out
  5. Audio L/R
  6. HDMI 2.0 / 4K, 1080p 24/60)
  7. Ethernet port: 1 0 / 1 0 0 / 1 0 0 0 Mbps
  8. USB 2.0 ports (2)
  9. External storage port (eSATA)
  10. Power: 12V

Skip Mode

They have a great feature called skip mode that allows you to skip through recorded commercials with a single button. This is a helpful option if you hate having to wait for commercials.

Quick Mode

With quick mode, you can watch you’re recorded show up to 30% faster with pitch corrected audio. It will not sound funny at higher speeds. So you can fast forward through the slow parts of a show.


The TiVo Bolt has excellent search capabilities. With their OneSearch option, you can search across several resources at once to find your favorite show. It will look online and on broadcast TV to see where the show is available for viewing.

Mobile Devices

Another cool feature is you can stream content right to your phone, computer or tablet through your wireless network. You can also download your recorded content to your device for later viewing.