TBS broadcasts Conan and Full Frontal With Sam Bee and also carries quite a few MLB games during the regular season and the playoffs. If you’re a TBS fan who’s cutting the cord, you’ll miss out on quite a bit of content.
Luckily, there are a variety of affordable, totally-legal ways to watch TBS without cable. As cord-cutting has risen, more streaming services than ever are providing access to premium TBS content.
In this article, we’ll discuss your top 4 options for watching TBS without cable. Let’s get into it.
How to Watch TBS Live Without Cable
As cord-cutting has become more common, cable and satellite TV providers have taken notice. That’s why major cable channels like TBS have begun selling their network content to “skinny bundle” streaming providers.
These “skinny bundles” allow cord-cutters to get access to premium cable networks for a very low price compared to cable. Currently, there are 4 streaming services which offer TBS.
Sling TV is, by far, the most cost-effective option if you want to stream TBS without cable.
Sling TV’s different channel packages can be a bit confusing, so we’ll break them down for you. TBS is available in both the $25/month Orange package, and the $25/month Blue package.
|Sling Orange||Sling Blue||Sling Orange + Blue|
|Fire TV Support||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Special Offers||FREE ROKU DEAL||FREE ROKU DEAL||FREE ROKU DEAL|
The Orange package includes a total of about 30 channels. With Orange, you will be able to watch TBS without cable and you will also get access to other cable channels like AMC, TNT, Comedy Central, IFC, History, and ESPN. See our full channel breakdown for more details.
At $25/month, the Orange package is the cheapest way to watch TBS without cable. However, it does have a major caveat. With Sling Orange, you’re limited to watching cable content on only a single device. You can’t watch on more than one platform simultaneously.
If you only ever plan on watching TBS by yourself, this is not a problem. But if you are planning on sharing your account at all, it’s serious issue.
The $25/month Blue package includes a few more channels for a total of 44+ depending on your location. You’ll get cable channels that are missing from the Orange package, like USA Network, Bravo, A&E, Fox Sports channels, and a few others.
The Blue package is a much better choice if you plan to share your account. You can watch Blue channels on up to 3 devices simultaneously. This is actually one of the more generous simultaneous streaming policies out there – it beats both DirecTV Now and base Hulu With Live TV packages.
You can combine both of these channels for $40/month, if desired. It seems that this is what Sling TV wants you to do, because if you subscribe only to the Blue or Orange package, you’ll miss out on some essential cable channels. This isn’t really worth it if you’re just interested in TBS, however.
The biggest drawback of Sling TV is that it does not come with an included cloud DVR. You have to pay an extra $5/month for DVR service, bringing the total cost to $30/month for both Sling Orange and Sling Blue, or $45/month for Orange + Blue.
Though you do have to pay for it, Sling TV’s DVR is pretty good. You get 50 hours of cloud storage with no expiration dates – but not all channels can be DVR’ed. Notably, Disney-owned channels like ESPN do not support DVR functionality.
Sling TV does have a slate of great apps and pretty good platform support. You can stream on Amazon Fire devices, Chromecast, Roku, Apple TV, and Android/iOS devices, as well as web browsers, LG/Samsung Smart TVs, and the Xbox One console.
Sling TV is the cheapest way to watch TBS without cable. If you go without a DVR, you can watch TBS for just $25 a month. Even with DVR service added, Sling TV is a pretty good deal.
The company offers a free 7-day trial, so you can give it a try yourself risk free and see if you like the service.
DirecTV Now has a great selection of cable channels, even in their lowest-cost $40/month “Live A Little” cable package. You get a total of over 65 channels (depending on your area) and a huge selection of top cable channels.
|Live a Little||Just Right||Go Big||Gotta Have It|
|Fire TV Support||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Special Offers||FREE FIRE TV DEAL||FREE FIRE TV DEAL||FREE FIRE TV DEAL||FREE FIRE TV DEAL|
Alongside TBS, you will get USA Network, AMC, FX/FXX, TBS, TNT, Spike, A&E, and even sports channels like ESPN and some local FOX Sports networks.
For the price, there is no better selection of cable channels out there. We would rate DirecTV Now very highly – if it weren’t for a couple of critical issues.
However, the DVR DirecTV Now offers is pretty weak, at just 20 hours of storage with 10 “slots.”
Simultaneous streaming is also a bit limited. You can only stream on 2 devices at once, though you can add a third stream for $5/month. While this is better than Sling Orange, it’s worse than some other picks on our list, like PlayStation Vue and the Sling Blue package. You’re probably going to run into streaming issues if you plan on sharing your account.
On the flip side, DirecTV Now has high stream quality and great channel coverage, as we mentioned. It also has support for streaming platforms such as Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Chromecast, and Apple TV, as well as web browsers and iOS/Android devices. However, there is no support for gaming consoles or smart TVs.
DirecTV Now offers a nearly unbeatable channel selection at a reasonable price, but is a bit lacking in features, compared to our other picks. If you’re interested in DirecTV Now, you can check it out with a free 7 day trial and see what you think.
To get TBS on PlayStation Vue, you’ll have to pay $45/month for the “Access” package. This puts the service as one of our most costly options on the list.
However, there are a few reasons that PlayStation Vue is a good choice, despite its higher cost compared to Sling TV and DirecTV Now. First, you get a pretty good selection of cable channels.
The “Access” package will get you TBS, as well as plenty of other cable channels like the USA Network, AMC, TNT, SyFy, TBS, TLC, and FX/FXX. Other channels include ESPN and cable news networks like CNN. You get a total of about 45 channels. The precise number may vary based on your location.
Next, PlayStation Vue has a very good DVR service. Your recordings are deleted after 28 days, but there are no limits beyond that. You can record as many shows and as many hours of content as you want, and watch it for 28 days with no limits.
The final – and best – reason to pick PlayStation Vue is its unbeatable simultaneous device streaming policy. Even the base, $45/month “Access” package allows streaming on 5 devices simultaneously. Nope, that’s not a typo – five!
This is more than any other streaming service out there – with the exception of Hulu With Live TV + the Unlimited Screens package (which costs an extra $14.99/month).
Platform support for PlayStation Vue is also very good. You’ll find apps for most major streaming platforms like iOS/Android devices, Apple TV, Chromecast, Amazon Fire, and Roku. You can also stream content through your web browser, or on your PlayStation 3 or 4 console. Of course, you won’t find Xbox support, due to Microsoft’s stiff rivalry with Sony.
PlayStation Vue gives you just about every cable entertainment network, including TBS, for a reasonable price. When you combine the great channel list, solid DVR service, and incredible simultaneous device policy, you get a great deal.
If you’re sharing your account with your family or friends, PlayStation Vue is your best choice. However, a cheaper service like Sling TV may be a better option if you don’t need to stream on 5 devices.
You can sign up for a free 5-day trial of PlayStation Vue by signing up on their website.
Currently, Hulu With Live TV is still in beta, but it’s already made a name for itself as one of the best cable alternatives out there.
Hulu with Live TV, unlike our other picks, only offers one monthly package. For $39.99/month, you get a subscription to somewhere between 50-70 cable channels, depending on your location.
Channels include TBS, as well as other major cable networks such as FX, FXX and FX movies, TNT and USA Network, A&E, and SyFy. One notable network that’s not available is AMC. This is perhaps not surprising due to the ongoing feud between AMC and Hulu.
One of the biggest perks of Hulu With Live TV is that it includes a base Hulu subscription. You can watch all of the VODs and archived shows available on Hulu for no extra fee.
The DVR is also fairly good. You get to record 50 hours of content, with no time or slot restrictions. You can boost this to 100 hours for an additional $14.99/month fee, with the Enhanced DVR package.
By default, Hulu With Live TV limits streaming to 2 devices. However, you can pay $14.99/month for the Unlimited Screens package. This lets you stream on unlimited devices within your home network and 3 devices outside of it. You can bundle both the Enhanced DVR and Unlimited Screens package for a $19.99/month fee, if desired.
Hulu With Live TV has been improving their device support throughout the beta program. Now you can stream on your web browser, iOS/Android devices, 4th-gen and newer Apple TVs, Roku, Chromecast, Amazon Fire devices, and the Xbox 360/One consoles, as well as select Samsung Smart TVs. The Nintendo Switch is also supported.
Hulu With Live TV gets you access to TBS, as well as the best repository of TV shows on-demand, making it a great deal. You also get a great cloud DVR, though the simultaneous streaming policy is a bit lacking unless you buy the Unlimited Screens package.
If you want an all-in-one cord-cutting solution, Hulu With Live TV is your best choice. But if you’re really only interested in live TBS content, we’d suggest a lower-cost alternative like Sling TV Orange or Blue.
Our Verdict: The Best Way to Watch TBS Without Cable
Depending on what you’re looking for, you’ve got a couple great choices.
The cheapest way to watch TBS without cable
Okay, this isn’t exactly a shocker. Sling TV wins here, hands-down. You can watch TBS without cable for just $25/month either the Orange or Blue package. Even if you add a DVR, it’s the cheapest choice.
Our top overall pick
If you want a diversity of cable networks, Sling TV is actually not the best choice. You can bundle Orange and Blue for $40/month, but there is a lot of “channel overlap” as we discussed in our full review. That price also doesn’t include a DVR – putting the actual cost at $45/month.
For this reason, PlayStation Vue and Hulu With Live TV tie for the title of the best overall pick. For $45 and $40/month, respectively, both services offer great benefits. With PlayStation Vue, you get a great DVR and the best simultaneous streaming policy around, and Hulu With Live TV gives you plenty of cable channels, as well as an included Hulu subscription.