Is Verizon’s whole-home DVR system a quantum leap forward? Or will you be left wanting more?

 

The Facts | The Specs | Main Features | The Hardware | Interface and Experience | The Verdict

 


Quantum Multi-Room DVR vs the Competition

Provider Simu. Recordings Storage Hours of HD/SD Cost/month
Hopper 3 DISH 16 2 TB 500/2,000 $15.00/month
The Genie (HR-44) DIRECTV 5 1 TB 200/800 $15.00/month
TiVo T6 RCN/DIRECTV 6 1 TB 150/1,000 $9.95/month
X1 Comcast 6 500 GB 100/400 $9.95/month
Quantum Multi-Room DVR Verizon Fios 12 1 TB 200/800 $26.00/month

 


What Is a Verizon Fios Quantum TV System?

Fios Quantum TV is the name of Verizon’s powerful multi-room DVR system and is one of our top DVRs of 2017. It allows you to play, pause, and rewind live TV on up to ten TVs with a set-top box. You can also set up recordings or play back recorded shows from any TV—all the TVs share the same schedule and storage, so everything works on every TV you connect.

Fios Quantum TV sits at the top of Verizon’s DVR offerings. The tiers are as follows:

  • DVR Service
  • Multi-Room DVR Service
  • Fios Quantum TV Enhanced Service
  • Fios Quantum TV Premium Service

All four tiers can handle the basic stuff you expect from a DVR, like recording more than one show at once, playing back your recordings, and accessing on-demand titles. Fios Quantum TV kicks things up several notches from Verizon’s standard Multi-Room DVR Service, though, with significant increases in both the amount of storage and the amount of programming that can be recorded at one time. Here’s a closer look at the differences.

But first, find out if Verizon Fios Quantum TV is a good fit for your household.

View Verizon Fios Plans

 

 


The Specifications

Simultaneous Recordings Hours of HD Storage Monthly Price*
Fios Quantum TV Premium Service Up to 12 200 $32
Fios Quantum TV Enhanced Service Up to 6 100 $22
Multi-Room DVR Service Up to 2 50 $12
DVR Service Up to 2 50 $11

* Payment plans and prices for Quantum TV vary based on number of connected TVs—up to 10. Media Servers and Media Clients beginning at $19.98/mo. Premium DVR Service is $32/mo., and Enhanced DVR Service is $22/mo. Recorded content stored on current set-top box will not be transferred to new TV equipment. Specific model Verizon branded router required. Fios Quantum TV available in select areas.

As you can see from the table, there is quite a jump in capacity between the basic DVR and Multi-Room DVR and Fios Quantum TV service—Verizon clearly wants you on its higher-end offering.

 


Main Features

There are two levels of Quantum TV—Enhanced and Premium. With the Enhanced tier, you can record up to six shows at once. With the Premium tier of service, the system can record up to twelve shows at once, making scheduling conflicts a thing of the past.

For storing the massive number of shows you can record with this system, Fios Quantum TV provides you with either 1 TB (Enhanced) or 2 TB (Premium) of storage, which is good for 100 or 200 hours of HD video storage, respectively.

The Quantum DVR can also play, pause, and rewind live TV on as many as ten TVs, and seamlessly switch among them. In fact, the whole system is seamless. Since it’s a whole-home DVR solution, you’ll have access to the same recorded programs and DVR list on each TV.

Pricing

Verizon’s equipment fees are some of the highest you’ll find. The Fios Quantum TV Premium service, at $32 per month*, is the highest DVR fee in the business. However, sometimes you get what you pay for, and Fios is consistently rated as one of the top TV and internet providers. In fact, Verizon took the number-one spot in our annual customer satisfaction survey.

View Verizon Fios Plans


The Hardware

The Fios Quantum TV system is made up of two different set-top boxes—the Verizon Video Media Server and the Verizon Media Client. The main box is the Video Media Server, which powers the setup. The Media Client boxes don’t really do anything on their own—they just piggyback off the server to provide signal to the TV they’re connected to.

Image by verizon.com

Verizon Video Media Server

Capabilities: The Verizon Video Media Server (VMS1100) is where the magic happens. It acts as a hub, providing most of the features of the Fios Quantum TV Service. This is also where the physical storage for the system is located. In addition to acting as the set-top box for your main TV and providing DVR service, the Media Server also powers up to four Verizon Media Clients to provide a whole-home DVR solution.

Storage: It’s also worth noting that this box is what separates Fios Quantum TV Enhanced from Premium: with Enhanced service, you get one Video Media Server, but with Premium, you get two, which doubles the storage and simultaneous recording capacity.

Specifications: The box itself measures 12.6″ x 9.1″ x 2.6″, which is a hair taller than some of the main competing DVRs, but a good bit smaller than most. That means you should have no problem finding a spot for it on your shelf. The XFINITY X1 DVR, by comparison, is over 18″ wide and 13″ deep.

Appearance: In terms of appearances, it’s a pretty bland-looking box. There is a large display on the front, right next to the equally large Verizon logo, along with a power button and a USB port. The screen displays the time and any relevant information, like recording status and channel number. There are also icons around the time that let you know if any software updates or messages are available. There are buttons to navigate the on-screen menus along the top of the box.

Outputs:,

  • HDMI
  • Component video
  • Composite video
  • Analog audio
  • Optical audio
  • Digital audio

Ports:

  • 2 USB 2.0 ports (1 front, 1 back)
  • 1 HDMI
  • 1 Ethernet
  • 1 Coaxial
  • 1 eSATA

Verizon Media Client

Capabilities: The Verizon Media Client is a smaller box that connects to the Media Server via coaxial cable. These boxes provide Quantum TV service to additional TVs. They don’t operate on their own, requiring a connected Media Server to provide full functionality.

Specifications: The Media Client is about half the size of the Media Server, but otherwise looks nearly identical. It has the same big display on the front, but lacks the USB port and buttons of the Media Server. It measures 7.5″ x 4.5″ x 1.75″.

Although the Media Client has a tuner, it relies on the Media Server to perform those operations and send the signal to it.

Remote

The Fios Quantum TV system uses the same Verizon-branded universal remote as its other set-top boxes. The remote works well enough, with springy buttons that are well separated. There are a lot of buttons, though. Furthermore, the remote can be programmed to control up to four devices. One of these will obviously be your set-top box. The other three can be TVs, audio devices, Blu-ray players, or any other devices you have in your home entertainment system.

One upside of the remote having a million buttons is the presence of dedicated shortcuts for certain functions. You’ll find buttons to jump straight to DVR recordings and the TV guide, as well as contextual buttons that change function depending on what you’re currently viewing on-screen. There is also a button dedicated to pulling up the on-demand listing. On the flip side, the remote is rather large to accommodate all those buttons—at least you won’t have to worry about losing it.

 


Interface and Experience

The Media Client boxes operate the same way as the Media Server boxes, so no need to worry about having different lists or user interfaces for each box. That’s the beauty of a whole-home DVR system like Fios Quantum TV.

The on-screen interface from Verizon is standard stuff. The two places you’re likely to spend most of your time are with the guide and the actual program, so we’ll take a closer look at those.

The Guide

The guide is the typical grid of programs, arranged by channel and time slot. The interface is nice and responsive—it has none of the delayed input you can sometimes see with other systems. The various programs are color-coded, although you’ll find quite a bit of confusion online as to what those colors mean. If nothing else, they break up the monotony and make things easier to read. You’ll also see a smaller version on the guide screen of whatever you’re currently watching so you don’t have to worry about missing anything while you’re browsing.

The Program

When you decide what to watch, the interface gets out of the way, letting you enjoy your program. You can call up info on what you’re watching by hitting the “Info” button on the remote, but otherwise, all you’ll see is your nice, fiber-driven picture. One nice feature is that when you select an SD program, a popup will appear and offer to take you straight to the HD version.

Mobile Apps

Like most TV providers, Verizon offers mobile apps that let you control your DVR, schedule recordings, and use your phone or tablet as a remote. The apps aren’t going to win any awards for design, with a red and white color scheme that looks like something from the late ‘90s, but they get the job done. They’re available for both iOS and Android devices, so no matter what combination of mobile devices your family has, you’ll be able to take advantage of these handy features.

In addition to controlling the Fios Quantum DVR, you can also use the apps to watch TV on the go. This is a nice perk for frequent travelers and TV junkies who want to squeeze in an episode of their favorite show on their flight or lunch break. The apps are free and the features are included in your Fios TV bill, so there’s no reason not to check them out.

 


The Verdict

The Fios Quantum TV system is a great setup for TV lovers. The convenience of having access to all your DVR recordings in every room can’t be beat, and the system offers plenty of storage for all your shows. Other highlights include the snappy performance and the ability to record twelve shows at once. The downside is that all those nice features come at a price. But if you can stomach the fees and live in one of Verizon’s coverage areas, Fios Quantum TV makes a great choice.

Learn More about Verizon Fios Plans

 


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* Payment plans and prices for Quantum TV vary based on number of connected TVs—up to 10. Media Servers and Media Clients beginning at $19.98/mo. Premium DVR Service is $32/mo., and Enhanced DVR Service is $22/mo. Recorded content stored on current set-top box will not be transferred to new TV equipment. Specific model Verizon branded router required. Fios Quantum TV available in select areas.