Cutting the Cable

The challenge is to eliminate the cable and cut costs by at least $100 a month without sacrificing entertainment.

Saturday I packed up our DVR’s and returned them to the Bright House Cable office. The last time I remember being without cable was the summer of 1991, when we were wonderfully and completely TV free. I have been paying these people for 20 years since our last break.

I don’t hate Bright House. They provided us with good service over the years; but like every other cable company they fall way short on the original promise of cable-better programming with fewer commercials.

The price of getting commercial TV over the cable keeps ticking up. Last summer we added a second TV in the guest bedroom and the additional seldom used outlet with a DVR added $25 a month (plus all those ridiculous taxes).

Cost of Cable TV:

HBO                                       $18.00

Combo (cable/phone)   $76.99

HD Pack                                $ 6.00

DVR Service                       $ 9.95

DVR Service                       $ 9.95

Add’l Outlet                       $    .95

HD DVR                               $ 8.00

HD DVR                               $ 8.00

+Netflix Blu-ray              $11.99

That totals $149.83 or $1,797.96 a year or $ 8989.80 over 5 years!

New Hardware:

Antenna, Radio Shack $30 This is to pickup networks, CBS, NBC, FOX and  PBS. All of these come in fine in high def.

Roku XD Streaming Player 1080p – (Cool tiny box). I bought the $80 XD model for 1080 high def and Wireless N. This connects wirelessly to our internet (we already had a wireless router) and allows us to stream TV, Movies, Sports and Music.

OBI110-$49.99 This little box lets me replace the cable phone line with a free Google voice number while using our existing cordless phones. No computers need to stay on. So far, I love this thing. It installed very easily and works as promised.



No monthly charge, some content free for prime members, movies rental 3.99 for new releases, TV episodes about $1


Watch Instantly Unlimited TV and Movies $7.99 a month (streaming movie selection is not as any where near as good as DVD selection)


Tons of TV old and new, lots of movies, very limited ads $7.99 a month


I paid $109 for the subscription that allows us to watch any almost game any time. Be very careful that you are not in a blackout area for your home team.

Cost without Cable:

HuluPlus              $ 7.99

Netflix                  $ 7.99 (changed to streaming only)

MLB                       $15.60 (total cost divided by 7 months. I guess I may have to do something similar after baseball season for NFL or college basketball)

Total new cost $31.58 MONTHLY SAVINGS $118.25 Hardware Costs $160.00


I bought the new hardware and hooked everything up in the guest room where we have a flat screen HDTV. Once I had it figured out, I moved the Roku and antenna downstairs. There I discovered our older non- flat screen HDTV was really a HDTV monitor. Because it has no tuner it cannot be connected directly to an antenna.

The solution was to sell it and its cabinet and move the flat screen downstairs. It’s bigger, better and worlds easier to connect.

Antenna-So far, we’ve watched nothing on this as almost all the network stuff we like is available on HuluPlus with very limited commercials. With cable, we used the DVR’s and never watched anything live -including sports. By recording a game and watching 30 minutes after the start time we could fast forward through the commercials.

Sports- Not at all sure how will we get NFL or College Basketball. Some we can get off the antenna but then we have commercials and no DVR.


I am a newbie at this and would love to hear your suggestions on how we can remain happily cable free.

4 thoughts on “Cutting the Cable”

  1. I would recomend you get a used wii or xbox360 and download for it. It offers 100’s of free internet TV stations. You pay a yearly fee or you can pay a one time life time fee… I even think it owrks on rohu, but im not sure. The one fee you did not mention was the wireless internet fee? Whats that per month?

    1. Paul, I have a business class internet connection( fixed ip) at home to serve my business needs so the answer to how much I pay for internet is too much. But I need that regardless of if I use it for tv streaming.

      I’ll look into sounds interesting, thanks.

  2. I have a roku and also purchased the playon Plug in – there are Private channels and scripts available for Playon and one called mega channel pack is like having basic cable with all the stations live. I had to purchase a windows laptop to run the Plugin and I got a free roku player with a lifetime subscription

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