Do you need a DIRECTV Genie to share programs throughout your home?

Sshhhhh. DIRECTV doesn’t want you to know this.

They love to tell you how their Genie DVR does a great job of sharing programs from a central DVR to three other rooms in your home. And you know what… they’re right. But what they don’t tell you is that you don’t strictly need a Genie DVR. You can do the same trick with an HR20 – HR24 DVR and any HD receiver. It just doesn’t work as well.

Connecting all your receivers to the internet is the first step. If you’re not already connected, read our tutorial here. It boils down to making sure all your receivers are capable of coax networking (in other words, either they’re model H24, HR24, or higher) and connecting an adapter to your router to add internet to your existing coax lines.

Next, take a look at your DIRECTV bill. If you have a line item for “Advanced Receiver Service” then you won’t pay any more. If you don’t but instead have a “DVR fee” and “HD Receiver Fee” you’ll end up paying about $3 extra to have whole-home service added to your account. Your Solid Signal account rep can help you with this or just call DIRECTV if you prefer.

Once you’re set up in their system you should be able to go to the Menus, and choose Settings&Help, Settings, Whole Home and choose to share programs from the DVR.

You do need to know… that there is a one-program limit to sharing. So if you’re sharing a program on one TV, none of the other TVs can share programs from that DVR. If you want to share more than one program, that’s when you get into Genie territory.