Here’s what I learned about the HMC30 (which I played with hands-on) at CES today from questioning a DirecTV product manager (not a clueless show temp but someone involved in the development). I was just a walk-up and there was no suggestion any of this was confidential – I wouldn’t post it if they had said it was. I think most of this is known (it certainly is by those beta testing but they have been under NDA) or has been speculated on already… * 5 tuners * Integrated PIP functionality – you’ll be able to watch two shows on the screen at the same time * 1 terabyte drive included * Software at launch will still limit season passes to 50 but they have plans to expand that in a later release – they only plan to expand it for the HMC30, not any of the existing HR2x boxes. He said it takes up a lot of background processing so it only makes sense for this box which has a faster processor. * At launch software will, like current boxes, treat external HD’s as a replacement for the internal drive rather than an extension. However, for the HMC30 only they plan a software revision that will handle external HD’s as an expansion drive that doesn’t override the internal drive. This will be a big improvement. * It is compatible with MRV so even though the theory is it acts as a “server” for multiple rooms you can still pair it with other DVR’s if you want. * RVU-compatible, so it can work remotely with box-free TV's that have RVU, which is currently only a subset of the 2011 Samsung LED line. For everyone else they have small boxes that work with the HMC30 to use remotely with your TV’s. * Remote is unchanged. UI is unchanged. Look of the receiver is similar to current HR24, but not exactly (it seemed thicker but I didn't study it closely or measure -- I did take a pick on my phone). * Launching “first half” of this year. (In another note, the PM said there definitely is no plans to add undelete/delete recovery feature like on the TiVo and some other brands. He said it has been internally debated a few times and settled as a no at least for the time being.) I am only passing on what I was told (or saw). I cannot guarantee the accuracy of the info, though it was clearly a knowledgeable DirecTV employee.