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Which DirecTV/HDTV Receiver to get?

Old 01-18-02, 02:25 PM
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Which DirecTV/HDTV Receiver to get? I think it will be Dish Network! :)

There are a few of these out, and americansatellite has the DTC100 RCA HDTV model with the Dish for $549 or so. Is this one good enough? Should I wait for a cheaper price? Any tips would be appreciated.

Last edited by theedge; 01-24-02 at 10:05 AM.
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Old 01-21-02, 09:55 PM
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I looked into this last year, and I may be wrong because it's been awhile, but I thought that model allowed you to receive only the DirecTV HD signal. In other words, it wouldn't receive/decode your local stations' HD signals over the air. Someone who knows more about this, please comment.
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Old 01-22-02, 01:13 AM
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I own the RCA DTC-100 and it does decode OTA HD signals as well as Direct TV (currently just HBO 509 and HD Net 199)

E-Mail me at: [email protected] if you'd like more info on my experiences with this model

You can do better than $549 - even from reputable dealers.
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Old 01-22-02, 01:17 PM
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I recently bought the Panasonic TU-HDS20 from Crutchfield for $425 open box in the scratch and dent section. The only thing wrong with it was that the cardboard box was slightly damaged. The menu and tuning is slow on this box and the fan is kinda noisy, but if you have the unit inside a entertainment center cabinet you can't hear the fan. The HDTV reception from OTA is really great. I have not seen the Directv HDTV reception yet because I am waiting on the guy to come out and install the dish.

BTW, if you are already a Directv subscriber, you can call them and tell them you want to upgrade to the oval dish and they will upgrade you to the dish, give you a new receiver and installation of the dish, 125' of cable run and setup the box for $50 plus $25 shipping.

Good Luck
 
Old 01-22-02, 01:51 PM
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I was looking into the Panasonic, since it is the kind of TV I own (56" 16:9) and the Replay Showstopper, so it would be neat to own some similar items. I have a JVC Home Theater and DVD player and the RCA Dish...I did see it for $425 without the dish, I might go after that. But with only 2 channels of HDTV on the dish, and I am not sure if Buffalo, NY has HDTV capability just yet.. I might hold off unless I find a great deal.
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Old 01-22-02, 02:03 PM
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Originally posted by theedge
I was looking into the Panasonic, since it is the kind of TV I own (56" 16:9) and the Replay Showstopper, so it would be neat to own some similar items. I have a JVC Home Theater and DVD player and the RCA Dish...I did see it for $425 without the dish, I might go after that. But with only 2 channels of HDTV on the dish, and I am not sure if Buffalo, NY has HDTV capability just yet.. I might hold off unless I find a great deal.
If you have Replaytv (as I do), setting it up is a little more complex. What I am going to end up doing is having the extra receiver that I get with the new dish dedicated to recording with my replaytv and use the HDTV receiver for watching live broadcasts.
 
Old 01-22-02, 03:23 PM
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Really? You can't take the S-Video or normal Composite connections of the ReplayTV and hook them up to the HDTV ?? Not even to record non-HDTV programs?
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Old 01-22-02, 05:30 PM
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Originally posted by steak
The menu and tuning is slow on this box and the fan is kinda noisy, but if you have the unit inside a entertainment center cabinet you can't hear the fan.
Good Luck [/B]
I just picked up the Panasonic TU-HDS20 for FREE. Yes I said FREE. I went to Ultimate Electronices and Purchased an HDTV (I was going to get one anyways) and they threw it in for free.

Now in reference to the slow menu. Once you hook it out and connect the phone line it will take the update to fix this problem It may take 24 hours or so but it does improve it.

I also have the RCA P61310 w/ the built in DCT-100. I like the way this one works better. Reason is on my Panasonic HDTV w/ the TU-HDS20 hooked up I can only use the 480P mode vs. the 1080i mode unless I watch HBO-HD, PBS-HD, HD-NET, and Discovery-HD. On the RCA it changes it buy it self.

One other Item on the Panasonic TU-HDS20 if you still think it is slow contact Panasonic directly and they will exchange it for a used receiver with more memory in it. But I really don't see the need to do so. Mine works just fine and the speed is fast for me.

Just my thoughts.


UPDATE WITH INFO FOR TU-HDS20 owners-(info taken from another website)


I finally found a Panasonic tech with some brains. He is Jim and at the phone number on the TU-HDS20 manual. I also got a phone call back from someone in their Elgin repair center. After returning my first defective receiver to Tweeter,( major video dropouts) I got a "good" one. I hope. No dropouts and fairly quiet fan. As I was told today from Jim, they will swap you a modified receiver if you give them a credit card first. But my receiver seems to be fine and he said I might get a totally used receiver that someone else returned. So it may have many hours of use and other potential reasons to fail early. They will fix a noisy fan (but it will never be totally silent), change parts for persistant dropouts to audio or video (my new STB has none) and upgrade the firmware from 7.2 (check about in the options menu)to 7.4 which DirecTv does autimatically. So since my fan is not that noisy, and I have no dropouts, and the new firmware, I will just keep my new box. If you want repairs to your OWN box, it nedes to go to Elgin. Expect 2+ weeks for the box to be returned.

Last edited by TheKobra; 01-22-02 at 05:37 PM.
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Old 01-22-02, 06:35 PM
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Originally posted by TheKobra


I just picked up the Panasonic TU-HDS20 for FREE. Yes I said FREE. I went to Ultimate Electronices and Purchased an HDTV (I was going to get one anyways) and they threw it in for free.

Now in reference to the slow menu. Once you hook it out and connect the phone line it will take the update to fix this problem It may take 24 hours or so but it does improve it.

I also have the RCA P61310 w/ the built in DCT-100. I like the way this one works better. Reason is on my Panasonic HDTV w/ the TU-HDS20 hooked up I can only use the 480P mode vs. the 1080i mode unless I watch HBO-HD, PBS-HD, HD-NET, and Discovery-HD. On the RCA it changes it buy it self.

One other Item on the Panasonic TU-HDS20 if you still think it is slow contact Panasonic directly and they will exchange it for a used receiver with more memory in it. But I really don't see the need to do so. Mine works just fine and the speed is fast for me.

Just my thoughts.


UPDATE WITH INFO FOR TU-HDS20 owners-(info taken from another website)


I finally found a Panasonic tech with some brains. He is Jim and at the phone number on the TU-HDS20 manual. I also got a phone call back from someone in their Elgin repair center. After returning my first defective receiver to Tweeter,( major video dropouts) I got a "good" one. I hope. No dropouts and fairly quiet fan. As I was told today from Jim, they will swap you a modified receiver if you give them a credit card first. But my receiver seems to be fine and he said I might get a totally used receiver that someone else returned. So it may have many hours of use and other potential reasons to fail early. They will fix a noisy fan (but it will never be totally silent), change parts for persistant dropouts to audio or video (my new STB has none) and upgrade the firmware from 7.2 (check about in the options menu)to 7.4 which DirecTv does autimatically. So since my fan is not that noisy, and I have no dropouts, and the new firmware, I will just keep my new box. If you want repairs to your OWN box, it nedes to go to Elgin. Expect 2+ weeks for the box to be returned.
Yeah, I got the download for 7.4 firmware, but it still seems really slow to me. I think the actual problem may be that I have an IR Blaster covering the remote sensor and that might be causing trouble with tuning because I go to tune and sometimes there is a delay so I hit the channel button again and again and before you know it I am 5 channels past where I wanted to be.

Anyhoo, the picture is outstanding and I suppose is worth the hassle. Once I get my oval dish installed, I will be removing the IR Blaster and putting it on my extra Hughes receiver and that will be dedicated to Replaytv recording.
 
Old 01-22-02, 08:46 PM
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I bet that is your problem. I do agree that the picture is great. But wait until you get the HD channels and you will be shocked. On my tube tv the picture is great and on my RPTV it is the same. But the Tube tv will always be just a little better.
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Old 01-22-02, 09:16 PM
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Originally posted by TheKobra
I bet that is your problem. I do agree that the picture is great. But wait until you get the HD channels and you will be shocked. On my tube tv the picture is great and on my RPTV it is the same. But the Tube tv will always be just a little better.
Oh I already have the 36" tube set and I am amazed at the picture!
 
Old 01-22-02, 10:35 PM
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Does this mean that even though DVR's/HDR's record digitally, they can't record an HDTV signal?
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Old 01-23-02, 01:01 AM
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If it is a D-VHS w/ firewire (1394 cable) it will record in 1080i with a D-VHS Tape. They D-VCR's go for $1200.00 each. I have never seen a tape price yet.
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Old 01-23-02, 01:05 PM
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The best OTA box that I have used is the Mitsu. I tried the Hughes and the Sony, but the Mitsu seems sharper.
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Old 01-24-02, 12:41 AM
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TheKobra,

Thanks. I know D-VCR's can record HDTV, but what about hard disk recorders? If they can't, why not? Can they be tricked or manipulated to do so? Seems like they should because they're just hard drives. (Why would anyone want to spend a lot of money to receive HDTV and then record it onto tape anyway? I don't get it. Doesn't anything on tape always look inferior to the live broadcast... even HDTV?)
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Old 01-24-02, 10:01 AM
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I read yesterday that regular PVRs aren't scheduled until 2003/4 for HDTV. But.. Dishnetwork had a prototype that may be out by the end of 2002! DirecTV does not plan on having 1394 interfaces!! Which means you cannot record their signal digitally!! Looks like I will switch to Dish when this baby comes out!

JVC also looks to have one out by JUNE! That would rock, since my DVD Player and Home Theater are JVC!

Taken from ilovehdtv.com:

DishNetwork and HD-STB tuners with digital interfaces

DishNetwork demo a prototype of their new Echostar (E*) HD- STB with PVR. $ N/A. TTM by the end of 2002. Outputs planned: DVI, 1394 and component. The PVR demo showed clean HD images at 0.5 slow motion, at fast 4X speed for reverse and forward, and at freeze frame.

The unit is compatible with HD-VHS VCRs via 1394. It records 12/15 hrs of HD using a PVR 160GB HDD at 720p or 1080i. It converts stored signals to other ATSC formats in the output.

The loop works as follows: The DishNetwork E* STB tunes and sends a HD signal out via the 1394 output to a D-VHS VCR for recording, then the tape is played back from the D-VHS VCR and its signal is sent back to the E* STB via the same by directional 1394, then the E* STB outputs the played signal to any current HDTV via the component analog connection. The same approach is for pre-recorded HD-VHS movie tapes when available.

The system seems to assure backward compatibility regarding connections with all HDTVs produced over the last 3 years that do not have digital inputs, and also facilitate connectivity with new D-VHS VCRs that have only 1394 in/outs.

JVC

HD-STB TU-9000 with PVR, TTM June 2002, $ N/A (but claimed to be competitive in price), PVR of 80GB HDD (maybe more GB by June), two 1394 in/out 4pin (two of 2 way each), dual decoder for PIP (HD/SD or SD/SD), DVI output, analog component output, 2 satellite inputs, No 8VSB tuner, optical audio out.

Read the whole review of CES here.. pretty cool
http://ilovehdtv.com/hdtvmagazine/reviews.html

Last edited by theedge; 01-24-02 at 10:04 AM.
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Old 01-24-02, 03:17 PM
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by theedge
[B]I read yesterday that regular PVRs aren't scheduled until 2003/4 for HDTV. But.. Dishnetwork had a prototype that may be out by the end of 2002! DirecTV does not plan on having 1394 interfaces!! Which means you cannot record their signal digitally!! Looks like I will switch to Dish when this baby comes out!

If you forget Dishnetwork purchased DirecTV. All of Dishnetwork customers will be changing the hardware to DirecTV hardware. This should start in the 3Q of 2002. I also heard that they killed this Dishnetwork HDTV PVR. Now I could be wrong.
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Old 01-24-02, 03:37 PM
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Well, considering CES was less than 3 weeks ago, I am not sure. It could be a good thing, since DirecTV doesn't like the 1394 port and Dish Network does, maybe we will get it on DTV!

Is the buyout of DirecTV confirmed? I don't remember reading where it went through...
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Old 01-24-02, 03:55 PM
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by TheKobra
[B]
Originally posted by theedge
I read yesterday that regular PVRs aren't scheduled until 2003/4 for HDTV. But.. Dishnetwork had a prototype that may be out by the end of 2002! DirecTV does not plan on having 1394 interfaces!! Which means you cannot record their signal digitally!! Looks like I will switch to Dish when this baby comes out!

If you forget Dishnetwork purchased DirecTV. All of Dishnetwork customers will be changing the hardware to DirecTV hardware. This should start in the 3Q of 2002. I also heard that they killed this Dishnetwork HDTV PVR. Now I could be wrong.
The buyout of Directv by Echostar has not been approved by the FTC yet. They expect this will take up to 1 year to complete. I would be surprised if equipment swaps start happening as soon as 3q 2002. Do you have any reference available to support that time frame?
 

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