I've just left a comment on the Tivo blog about picture quality on the Tivo service. HD better; SD softer. There also seems to be a slight zoom effect which I think is accentuating the softening on SD. This may just be part of acclimatising to the new service (only installed yesterday)and I'm still playing around with the TV settings to see if I can improve matters but it is a little disappointing (our TV is a fairly high end Sony which does generally provide really sharp definition).I agree with you Kevin: seems to fair bit softer than my V+ (which I still have, albeit now on a different TV). The only non-HD channels I watch regularly are BBC4, More4 and BBC News and I'd say they all look softer on the TiVo. They're perfectly watchable on my modest 32in but anyone with a 48in or larger screen won't be too happy. It's a soft rather than pixelated picture, and some SD channels are better than others (BBC4's Rubicon last night looked okay - but why isn't it on BBC HD?!). I don't think it is as anywhere near as bad as comments on some forums have suggested and it very much depends on the size and general PQ of your TV. On my Toshiba it looks very close to the same channels on the built-in Freeview tuner, whereas when compared with the V+ Freeview was weaker.
The majority of viewing is now in HD but for those of us who spend quite a lot of time with BBC4 this softening in SD is still significant.
Anyone else picking up the same effect?
Like Kevin I will almost exclusively be watching HD from hereon, which makes the comparison perhaps more jarring.