Frequently Asked Questions
What is Modulus?
Modulus is the frst ever all-in-one solution for quality home theater systems. It combines a VR, commercials, record your streaming content, and view all your media across any room in the house.
Does Modulus replace my cable company DVR?
Yes, the Digital Video Recorder in Modulus is far superior to the restrictive, low quality units that cable companies typically provide. Modulus allows you to skip commercials, record streaming, watch your programs quickly in “Time Save Mode” and record up to six programs at the same time. The Program Guide that comes with your Modulus DVR includes everything that cable company DVRs provides, with more information and easy-to-browse screens.
How do I play my content throughout my house?
By using the Modulus Mx1. The Mx1 is much smaller than the main M1 unit, and fits easily behind the screen of any wall-mounted TV screen. The Mx1 is perfect for sharing your content in any room, on the patio, or even a garage apartment. The Mx1 comes with the same remote control and delivers the same experience as the M1 device.
How do I upload all my personal media to Modulus?
Easy! First, you can upload using our Blu-ray/DVD/CD player with convenient front-loading slot. Second, you can attach your video camera or smartphone using our custom Modulus adaptors and upload direct from the device. Modulus also supports Netfolders that connect network accessible media in your home. We support flash drives and external USB drives as well as downloaded content. Modulus stores all your media on its massive massive internal hard drive of 6TB, 12TB or 20TB, and also redundantly in the cloud.
Will Modulus work with my existing home automation system?
Yes, Modulus is designed to work smoothly with most major home automation systems like Control4, Elan, Crestron, Savant and others.
What drivers do you support?
We support Control4, Elan, and Crestron today, with more coming after CEDIA, prioritized based upon dealer requests.
What is your warranty / exchange policy?
Eighteen (18) months – All included, bumper to bumper warranty.
Does Modulus support 4K / UHD / HDR?
Yes! M1 playback of UHD / HDR is supported, in hardware, for any local or network video file or imported disc. The M1 does not yet have a 4K optical drive, but this is being planned for an upcoming model, and MMS plans to offer a USB 4K optical drive as an add-on for the current M1 model.
Do you support Dolby TrueHD? Dolby Atmos?
Yes – The M1 / Mx1 supports digital audio pass-through, so these formats may be correctly decoded by the connected pre-amp, receiver, or TV.
You can't do that legally / Is it legal?
MMS has thoroughly worked through all legal details and is in full compliance with current U.S. federal law. For details, refer to the MMS Legal FAQ.
Can I expand using NAS? Can I use my own hard drives?
Yes, for all content except from DRM-protected cable TV (cable DVR recordings must reside in the 6TB-20TB internal storage). We support importing of network content, or attaching to network content (“NetFolder”). We also support importing or attaching to USB-attached external drives. For dealer expansion of internal disk configurations, please contact MMS for details.
Do you support over-the-air antennas? Can I mix and match?
Yes, we support OTA tuning, and we support mix-and-match of OTA with cable.
Do you have mobile apps for a tablet or phone?
Yes, by specifying the M1 / Mx1 IP address, any unit may be controlled using our control app on Andriod phones or tablets (iOS is planned). We also offer an Android-based app that supports content playback / DVR scheduling. Both apps are currently under development to update the UI and some controls.
How does MMS legally record cable TV programming?
MMS products include internal tuners and accept a CableCard from cable providers for access to live TV content. The CableCard ensures secure access to subscribed channels. MMS products can also accept over-the-air (OTA) TV antenna programming. DRM-protected channels require DRM features in the tuner hardware that validate a “protected path” to the display device. This protected path requires a return loop using the HDCP copy protection scheme, which is supported in the tuner card, CPU, GPU, main board chipset, and loadable firmware / software drivers.
The graphics stack drivers were developed for MMS by Intel, and these drivers that enable the hardware HDCP require that the operating system be validated at boot time with “trusted boot” technology, included in the shipped operating system. This ensures a valid protected path.
Is commercial-skipping lawful?
Yes. As proof, there are multiple brands of DVRs that today prominently advertise some form of commercial-skipping. While other solutions are far more limited in scope of channels or times of day supported, the concept has been well-accepted across the industry as a legitimate DVR feature. MMS is unique primarily in that it uses automated software technology, rather than manual labor, to flag commercial sequences.
How does MMS legally import optical disc content?
For DVD discs, the technology used has been in the public domain for 20 years, included in every major distribution of the linux operating system freely provided to millions of users. U.S. copyright law explicitly allows for reverse-engineering of technological measures when required for the purpose of interoperability, as was the case with linux, where no commercial alternatives were available. Preventing disc playback on popular operating systems could be an anti-trust concern over restraint of free trade.
For Blu-ray discs, where the principle remains the same but there is less precedent, MMS has elected in an abundance of caution not to supply active decryption technology, but instead permit this to be an individual decision of the user.
How does MMS legally record streaming content?
U.S. copyright law places restrictions on how DRM-protected content may be decrypted. The methods used inside Modulus to record streaming content does not include any decryption technology. The decryption is handled using the provider’s decryption technology as delivered to the user’s device from them directly. Modulus has developed a technique that intercepts the stream after it has been legally decrypted for a given valid user account. Thus, the challenges of stream recording in high definition are entirely technical in nature, not legal.
Have other companies successfully used disc import methods? Have any been sued or shut down?
Over a half-dozen other companies serving the home theater market with disc import capability have used the same method for many years (some over 10 years). Management research and industry expert inputs indicate that none of these companies were shut down, or sued, for violating U.S. copyright law.
Kaleidescape was sued for breach of contract with the DVD CCA. They won in a March 2007 ruling, but it was overturned 5 years later on appeal over a technicality. The license agreement they signed included adherence to the entirety of the “CSS General Specifications”, but their product was centered around violating one of the terms regarding simultaneous use. Had they not signed that agreement with the DVD CCA, they would not have been in violation.
What are the primary copyright laws that apply?
The most relevant law is the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA). Specifically, Chapter 12 of Section 103 of the DMCA generated the most controversy relating to media content. It makes it illegal to circumvent technological measures (i.e. encryption) that control access to work (“access control”), when circumvention is the only or primary commercial purpose. While it is legal for a consumer to use circumvention to make personal copies of media he/she has rights to access, it is not legal to traffic in the circumvention software that enables it. MMS avoids this issue because MMS does not “traffic in any circumvention software” and furthermore provides no support for such software (the consumer makes that choice for their personal use after installing the unit).
Just as important, there are critical exemptions in the DMCA, including that copy-control circumvention (once access is authorized) is not prohibited. Also, the DMCA upholds the long-standing “Fair Use” doctrine permitting limited duplication of copyrighted material for personal use without requiring permission. Furthermore, the DMCA explicitly allows reverse-engineering of technological measures for the purpose of interoperability. This is the exact situation with the DVD and Blu-Ray libraries discussed above.
The Making of Modulus
Steve Schulz discusses how Modulus makes watching TV fun again! Modulus is the first ever all-in-one premium DVR for the streaming age, unifying your home media into one device, connecting to your TV with one input and controlled by a single full featured remote.
Modulus: The All-In-One Premium DVR
The first ever all-in-one premium DVR for cable and over-the-air recording, Modulus is the breakthrough solution for the digital age.
Modulus Media Systems at Tech Bites 2018
Modulus Media Systems revolutionizes streaming with the new Modulus system. Watch as Steve Schulz, CEO, introduces the product on Day Two of Tech Bites at CEDIA Expo.