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DirectTV or DishNetork?? Help!!!

Old 03-12-07, 10:37 PM
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DirectTV or DishNetork?? Help!!!

Ok.....i am ready to take the HDTV plunge but the information about this 2 networks are a bit overwhelming for me. Basically, i want as many HD programming as possible with local channels. I don't care about any sporting events. Which provider should i choose? I am currently using DirectTV with Tivo and love Tivo's functionalities. Does DishNetwork DVR functionality rivals Tivo?
Does DishNetwork has season pass capabilities? Help!!!!!
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Old 03-12-07, 10:42 PM
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In terms of HD DVR, the Dish Network receiver is now free instead of the previous $200 lease. Make sure to call Dish Network and DirectTV though to make sure local channels are in HD in your area. Dish Network has my local channels in HD, but DirectTV doesn't.

I've been doing a lot of research about Dish Network and DirectTV recently. My cable company recently got rid of the FOX channel, so I've been using rabbit ears to get any reception on that channel. It's really a pain and the quality is not that good, so I'm going to probably take the plunge and get Dish. Plus, it appears to be a bit cheaper for me than DirectTV. So, for me, I'm probably gonna sign up for Dish Network later this week (mostly because it has my local channels in HD) but if anyone else in this forum has information on which is better I'll definitely take it into consideration.
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Old 03-12-07, 11:44 PM
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One thing to note is that the HD quality on DirecTV is absolutely abysmal.
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Old 03-13-07, 12:24 AM
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When I decided to take the plunge I did a lot of research on Dirctv and Dish. At the time Dish had my locals and Direct did not, so that made it easier. But Directv also only had around half (or less) of the total HD channels available as Dish did. If you are just interested in HD, Dish is the obvious choice.

About the DVR. It does have a season pass. I prefer it to tivo. I was never a big tivo fan, though. I didn't like the crap it would record for me, the slow interface, etc. I just never really liked it. The Dish DVR is straight forward and very customizable. If you want random crap recorded that it thinks you might like, you will be disappointed. But if you want a good DVR that is intuitive, it is very good.
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Old 03-13-07, 11:40 AM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
About the DVR. It does have a season pass. I prefer it to tivo. I was never a big tivo fan, though. I didn't like the crap it would record for me, the slow interface, etc. I just never really liked it. The Dish DVR is straight forward and very customizable. If you want random crap recorded that it thinks you might like, you will be disappointed. But if you want a good DVR that is intuitive, it is very good.
Random crap? You only get that if you turn that "feature" on (it might be on by default, but you can turn that off easily). I never got anything recorded on my Tivo that I didn't want it to record.

I've used the Tivo, the Dish DVR, and the Directv DVR (non-Tivo branded). The Tivo is a clear winner by far. I'd pay a $200 premium to get a Tivo. However ...

Directv has already moved away from Tivo. They no longer manufacture Tivo branded DVRs. They have their own DVRs now. The HD DVR (HR20-700) has had its share of bugs, but they are releasing new software weekly. And if you want, you can participate in the release and provide feedback. They are really good about adding features based on feedback. Read all about it here:
http://www.dbstalk.com/forumdisplay.php?f=118

Anyway, back to Directv and Dish. Dish currently has more national HD programming than Directv, although Directv annouced that it will have 70 (more than double Dish) by the end of this year. I haven't heard any new announcement by Dish, but I'm sure they'll follow suit with more HD programming as well.

With both, the HD quality is not on par with OTA HD due to extra compression. With both HD DVRs, you can choose to connect them to an external antenna to receive local HD channels OTA. HD channels OTA should look much better than Directv HD or Dish HD. Plus, not all local channels are available through the satellite (e.g. PBS-HD in NYC).
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Old 03-13-07, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by wewantflair
One thing to note is that the HD quality on DirecTV is absolutely abysmal.
That's not entirely true. The MPEG-2 channels are, the new MPEG-4 locals aren't.
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Old 03-13-07, 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by namja
Random crap? You only get that if you turn that "feature" on (it might be on by default, but you can turn that off easily). I never got anything recorded on my Tivo that I didn't want it to record.

I've used the Tivo, the Dish DVR, and the Directv DVR (non-Tivo branded). The Tivo is a clear winner by far. I'd pay a $200 premium to get a Tivo. However ...
I know....it's like being the guy that doesn't like the ipod (which I love). You can turn off the random crap recording and just get a visually poor screen that isn't fast to load (at least on mine, it wasn't) that makes some little noises, but honestly, I don't see any way that it is superior? How does it record better? How does it do anything better? Why do I have to insert a secret code to get a 30 second skip?

It just didn't live up to the hype for me as I didn't see any way that it was superior.
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Old 03-13-07, 05:10 PM
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I have only had experience with one Tivo, the one I have from Directv. I love the dual-tuner feature, but it is abysmally slow at times. I have no idea if that's how Tivos are in general, but I liked it other than that. I don't know how it compares to other DVR's though.

I immediately turned off the Tivo suggestion recordings as well.
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Old 03-13-07, 05:37 PM
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Hmmm......heard that Dish uses 2 satellite antennas for HD content, is this true? The more i read, the more i feel i should hold off till this summer....
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Old 03-13-07, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by vhgong
Hmmm......heard that Dish uses 2 satellite antennas for HD content, is this true? The more i read, the more i feel i should hold off till this summer....

No, the Dish 1000.2 has 3 lnb that hit each sat. It does depend a bit on where you live, from what I have read, though. I'm in WA state, and it is supposedly tougher to use a single sat. So at home I do have 2 small dishes, but at work I have just the one. The signal strength on one sat is a little weaker than I would like, but it comes in.
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Old 03-13-07, 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
No, the Dish 1000.2 has 3 lnb that hit each sat. It does depend a bit on where you live, from what I have read, though. I'm in WA state, and it is supposedly tougher to use a single sat. So at home I do have 2 small dishes, but at work I have just the one. The signal strength on one sat is a little weaker than I would like, but it comes in.
Wow!! I am in WA state too....North Everett.....I still need to do more homework before i take the plunge......><
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Old 03-13-07, 08:54 PM
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IMO it's a no-brainer right now. Dish has quite a few HD channels that DirecTV does not:

A&E HD (useful primarily if you like reruns of CSI:Miami in HD)
Food Network HD
HGTV HD
National Geographic HD

The original VOOM HD channels:

Animania HD
Equator HD
Family Room HD
Film Fest HD
Gameplay HD (great computer game demos and tourney coverage in HD)
Gallery HD
HDNews
Kung Fu HD
Monsters HD
Rave HD (concerts in HD)
Rush HD
Treasure HD
Ultra HD
World Cinema HD
WorldSport HD
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Old 03-13-07, 09:18 PM
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Monsters-HD on Dishnet is the best channel I've ever had!
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Old 03-13-07, 09:30 PM
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I think i will have to make a trip to a DishNetwork provider this weekend and try out their DVR and see how much difference it is compared to Tivo. Thats the only thing that is holding me back now.
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Old 03-13-07, 10:44 PM
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Problem with the Voom content, it's alot of replaying the same material.

Right now, for HD content, Dish is the way to go. However, give DirecTV another 6 months and they'll have more content. And it will be better content.
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Old 03-13-07, 10:50 PM
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I've had the Dish 622 for about 8 months now, and I love it. I've been with D* for about 9 years and got their first DVR (6 hour capacity) when it first came out 8 years ago. I've got 3 DVRs now, and the 622 is the best of the lot. The menus and functions are very intuitive and easy to learn. Before I "re-upped" last year, I looked at the DTV options and D* had more programming I was interested in for less, so that sealed the deal.

Phil
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Old 03-13-07, 11:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Deftones
Problem with the Voom content, it's alot of replaying the same material.

Right now, for HD content, Dish is the way to go. However, give DirecTV another 6 months and they'll have more content. And it will be better content.
Maybe that would be the best choice to wait for 6 months and see what DirectTv and Dish has to offer. I've waited so long so 6 more months, i think i can wait somemore....hopefully.
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Old 03-13-07, 11:24 PM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
I know....it's like being the guy that doesn't like the ipod (which I love). You can turn off the random crap recording and just get a visually poor screen that isn't fast to load (at least on mine, it wasn't) that makes some little noises, but honestly, I don't see any way that it is superior? How does it record better? How does it do anything better? Why do I have to insert a secret code to get a 30 second skip?

It just didn't live up to the hype for me as I didn't see any way that it was superior.
Yes, it records better. All DVRs, including the Tivo, come out of the box a POS. By that I mean when they are first made, they suck. They fail to record when told to. Eventually they all get better, like the Dish 622 (only took what, 5 generations). The Tivo has been around for over a decade and the bugs have been gone for a long time. The only model that ever worked well in 1st generation (and I am loathe to admit this) was the Microsoft model used by both Dish and DirecTV once upon a time.

I have absolutely no problem with the speed of the Tivo guide, although the normal guide is abysmal. And there have been certain software periods where it was slow, those times are past. I also much prefer the layout of the Tivo guide to any other, DVR or not.

And it costs me one button press to get the 30 second skip code toggled on/off. Which, conveniently, wasn't taken away from me by lawsuits. ReplayTV can't say the same for some of their commercial-skipping mess. Many recent DVRs simply skip this kind of feature.

Oh, and I turn the obnoxious beeps off. Seriously, what is the question, again??


I keep waiting for the Tivo haters to come up with a reason to hate it that wouldn't be explained by simply reading the manual or using it for a month. Telling cable DVRs (or the 'new' DirecTV crap) to record something, then finding it not recorded is a serious problem that I will never accept.

Unfortunately, there is no current inexpensive means of using Tivo unless you already have one, so this argument is all academic. There's the S2 standalone, which doesn't really compare with a cable/sat model, even though it doesn't forget to record. There's the $800 S3, most might balk at the price. And Comcast hasn't actually started using the Tivo software, yet. And DirecTV no longer makes them.

Last edited by Spiky; 03-13-07 at 11:26 PM.
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Old 03-14-07, 10:19 AM
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DishNetwork is probably the way to go.

Currently the only real benefit DirectTV has is sports programming (Sunday Ticket, MLB etc), but it sounds like you aren't interested in that.

Dish has CURRENTLY by far the most HD. This may change this year, as Direct TV has announced 100 HD channels, but who knows if they will deliver, plus they had a setback with one of their satellite launches.

The DishNetwork HD DVR (the 622) is a nice functional DVR, and can record 3 HD streams at once (1 OTA and 2 Sat) and has worked well for me.
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Old 03-14-07, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by dharding
IMO it's a no-brainer right now. Dish has quite a few HD channels that DirecTV does not:

A&E HD (useful primarily if you like reruns of CSI:Miami in HD)
Food Network HD
HGTV HD
National Geographic HD

The original VOOM HD channels:

Animania HD
Equator HD
Family Room HD
Film Fest HD
Gameplay HD (great computer game demos and tourney coverage in HD)
Gallery HD
HDNews
Kung Fu HD
Monsters HD
Rave HD (concerts in HD)
Rush HD
Treasure HD
Ultra HD
World Cinema HD
WorldSport HD
Wow. I didn't realize Dish had so many HD channels. I already have DirecTV and won't be switching... but I'm curious. How much does Dish charge for this package? I'm anxiously awaiting the new satellites that are supposed to launch and give us DirecTV subscribers a ton of new HD channels. I only hope they won't increase the price(s) over what I'm already paying.
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Old 03-14-07, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Spiky
I keep waiting for the Tivo haters to come up with a reason to hate it that wouldn't be explained by simply reading the manual or using it for a month. Telling cable DVRs (or the 'new' DirecTV crap) to record something, then finding it not recorded is a serious problem that I will never accept.
I'm not a tivo hater, just not a fanboy. I also grew up on the Dishplayer from Microsoft, so maybe that is why I didn't fall in love with Tivo. I used Tivo for 2 years, and it just didn't impress me. It wasn't bad by any means, it just didn't live up to the hype. But then, I have never had a DVR not record something, either.

But it does seem that Tivo, after you've gone through and made it all it should be, is merely as good as the current generation of DVRs.
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Old 03-14-07, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Jray
Wow. I didn't realize Dish had so many HD channels. I already have DirecTV and won't be switching... but I'm curious. How much does Dish charge for this package? I'm anxiously awaiting the new satellites that are supposed to launch and give us DirecTV subscribers a ton of new HD channels. I only hope they won't increase the price(s) over what I'm already paying.
The price for the HD package was the same on both services when I got it ($10?)
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Old 03-14-07, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Deftones
Right now, for HD content, Dish is the way to go. However, give DirecTV another 6 months and they'll have more content. And it will be better content.

Think so? What are the articles?
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Old 03-14-07, 03:37 PM
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Well, so far the Fox/FX HD channel is going to be a DirecTV exclusive (at least for the time being). Disney just announced by early 2008 all of their nationals (Disney Channel, Disney Toon, ESPNews, and ABC Family) will be on DirecTV. Here's the Disney announcement: http://www.dbstalk.com/showthread.php?t=82267

That's just off the top of my head. For me, it's about content over quantity. Sure, the Voom stuff is nice on paper, but it's mostly junk. I have actual use for stuff like ESPNews. Granted, this is based solely off of DirecTV's announcements, and Dish's lack thereof.

As for other stuff, I'm talking about HD sporting events. I know that DirecTV is adding a ton of RSNs in HD. I know the OP isn't specifically wanting that, but the draw of more HD content w/ NFL, MLB, NBA is great to me.

Last edited by Deftones; 03-14-07 at 03:41 PM.
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Old 03-14-07, 07:18 PM
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Yeah, if sports and HD are your thing then DirecTV is the choice. It appears every March Madness CBS game will be in HDTV (all 60+ of them) to those that pay for the service and have the equipment. Same thing for every NFL game in the future.
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