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DISH's new Hopper DVR - A good idea?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by TomCat, Jan 13, 2012.

Do we like DISH's "Hopper" concept?

  1. Great idea; I can't wait for DTV to offer this

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. I might use it some if I had it

    20.5%
  3. Ho hum

    20.5%
  4. Bad idea - let's not complicate things

    60.3%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Jan 15, 2012 #61 of 122
    Diana C

    Diana C Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    :backtotop Trying to get back on topic..

    It's apples and oranges. The HR34 and the Hopper target 2 very different markets. IMHO it is like comparing a Porsche 911 and a Porsche Cayene. Both are really nice cars, but do I want 30 cubic feet of cargo space in my 911? If I did, I'd buy the Cayene. Both the HR34 and the Hopper are valid, but very different, DVRs designed to solve different problems.
     
  2. Jan 15, 2012 #62 of 122
    Jerry_K

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    However much space it takes, most of it is likely useless. Many things useless to me and my viewing preferences, many things (probably different) useless to you with your viewing preferences. A waste of energy. Who is going to go through 84 hours of recordings every week just to transfer a few hours to the user portion of the hard drive? Not me and probably not you either.
     
  3. Jan 15, 2012 #63 of 122
    Shades228

    Shades228 DaBears

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    My point is that DISH has done things technologically speaking that limit their ability to grow to meet the needs that many DIRECTV customer's are used to now. However at this point I'll wait to see the final spec and installation to see if they change anything. I still think that this is almost a side step rather that a step forwards.

    As for the HD space I replied to a thread from another page prior to seeing the back and forth of the latest posts. It had nothing to do with ignoring new facts.
     
  4. Jan 15, 2012 #64 of 122
    veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Please show where then because you were posting Mb/s, which isn't MHz.
    I would take "your word" for a posting of the Spaceway TP "used" bandwidth in MHz.
     
  5. Jan 15, 2012 #65 of 122
    P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    You are still dragging the thread off-topic. Return to that relevant thread hence my first quoted (by you) phrase ... :backtotop
     
  6. Jan 15, 2012 #66 of 122
    veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Sure, as I'll never get the info from you.

    You seem to post some "data" that is off by factors of two, three, or ten, and then have a hard time correcting it or just keep ignoring others that do.
     
  7. Jan 15, 2012 #67 of 122
    P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    Why is dumping baseless acquisitions here again? :down: :backtotop
     
  8. Jan 15, 2012 #68 of 122
    lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

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    Most that will use the PrimeTime feature will just watch the shows they want within the 8 day window and be done with it.
     
  9. Jan 16, 2012 #69 of 122
    Jerry_K

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    From what I read you have to transfer the show from the reserved (unwatchable) portion of the drive to the user (watchable) portion of the drive.

    Why not just record it to the watchable portion in the first place?
     
  10. Jan 16, 2012 #70 of 122
    P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    Lets get the box in our hands and you'll know all details of the process. ;)
     
  11. Jan 16, 2012 #71 of 122
    Rtm

    Rtm Godfather

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    I'd prefer the hard drive not spinning all the time making extra heat when unnecessary. I guess the Hopper is meant to be in the living room so I guess not a big deal. But when I'm recording 2 shows my HR24 in my bedroom heats up and the fan starts the spin, just creating a little bit of extra ambient noise I find annoying
     
  12. Jan 16, 2012 #72 of 122
    markrogo

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    I find them designed to solve almost identical problems. Dish does make an assumption about general interest in network TV and passive recording thereof (although their intention is to allow auto saving of any of those programs). The whole client-server model with multi-tuner recording is essentially identical between the two.

    The difference is limited to the fact that on DirecTV you can always record any 5 things you want, on Dish, you can record any 3 you want, or 6 during primetime -- so long as 4 are on network TV.

    For folks like the rogo household, the recordings during primetime would be identical.
     
  13. Jan 16, 2012 #73 of 122
    James Long

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    There is no "unwatchable" portion of the drive. The reserved portion cannot be used by the viewer for the customers recordings but all the recordings there (which includes On Demand satellite downloads that can be played back at a moment's notice) are watchable.

    The only transfers needed is if one wants to keep a show beyond the 8 day limit (and has not already set an individual timer for the show).
     
  14. Jan 16, 2012 #74 of 122
    Jerry_K

    Jerry_K Godfather

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    James Long,

    Thanks for that clarification.
     
  15. Jan 16, 2012 #75 of 122
    fluffybear

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    Mrs. Fluffybear and I watch/record less than 10 hours of prime time programming from the major broadcast networks each week with very little overlap so I see very little need for a unit to record 70+ hours of shows I don't.
     
  16. Jan 16, 2012 #76 of 122
    TomCat

    TomCat Broadcast Engineer

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    You can't demux one program from a program stream once the stream becomes a saved file; the only way to do that would be to stream it again, probably in real time (maybe faster), demux it at that point, and rerender the saved portion of the original file a second time.

    It is theoretically possible to do that in a DVR in the background, and DISH is fond of transferring files after the fact, but I doubt their DVR has the horsepower to do that. But then, if they could manage it as a background process, maybe they can; the one thing DISH has been good at is making the interface snappy and responsive, so maybe they have coders that can manage CPU cycles better than the coders from DTV. Of course in my mind reliable code beats fast efficient code that is unreliable every single time, and reliability has never been a strong suit of their DVRs.
     
  17. Jan 16, 2012 #77 of 122
    Diana C

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    I haven't seem anyone say that transfer from the PTA repository to user space is instantaneous. I would expect that they are doing exactly that...restreaming the multiplexed data as if they were playing back the recording and rerecording it on the user partition.
     
  18. Jan 16, 2012 #78 of 122
    TomCat

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    I agree, it does not add up. I know from actually doing it a couple times that a 2 TB drive will hold about 470 hours of HD from DTV, assuming all of it is MPEG-4, which in my case it always is.

    Now lets assume I have "Hopper" algorithm invoked that records and holds all prime for 8 days. Even with two of those days being Sundays, that's only a total of 94 hours of stored content. If you do the math, that is only 20% of the capacity of a 2 TB drive as implemented by DTV, and bit rates over on DISH are fairly equivalent as they use a nearly-identical system at nearly-identical rates. I should have room for 386 more hours of storage even beyond the Hopper stuff. If they are referring to a 1 TB partition, then the numbers almost make sense, but still not really.
     
  19. Jan 16, 2012 #79 of 122
    TomCat

    TomCat Broadcast Engineer

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    I never said they could not do that; what I said is that this would be exactly what they would have to do, and that if they did not, the whole stream is saved until all content from that stream is allowed to be deleted.

    But that is revolutionary; no one has ever used that technology before in a consumer product, so unless DISH says "this is how it works" one has to assume that this is an obstacle that they must overcome (which they very well may have), and I was simply pointing that out.

    It doesn't seem all that odd to be discussing the parameters of new technology and speculating about it since it is indeed new and we don't have an on-the-record explanation yet. But you are free not to participate if that is what best suits you.
     
  20. Jan 16, 2012 #80 of 122
    Diana C

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    From the point of view of the hardware configuration of the respective units, I agree. Both are multi-tuner DVRs with 1TB of user available disk space.

    The main difference is that the HR34 has 5 general purpose tuners and the Hopper has 2 general purpose tuners and 1 special tuner.

    However, that hardware difference is supported by very different software. Where DirecTV has chosen to make their unit operate as a peer of their other HD DVRs and receivers, Dish has chosen to make their unit a standalone system.

    DirecTV is focused on users that want maximum flexibility and customization of what is recorded. A DirecTV user can build very large systems, supporting massive numbers of tuners, and supporting a dozen or more viewing locations.

    Dish is focused on users that want simpler, easier to use systems. A Dish user can flip on one feature and never have to program a prime time network recording again.

    The Hopper is a natural extension of the Dish approach of seeing multi-tuner DVRs as central tuning devices as much, if not more, as central recording devices. It also reflects their view that most of their customers have 2 or 3 viewing locations and don't generally move around much.

    The HR34 reflects DirecTV's approach of seeing multi-tuner DVRs has primarily recording devices that support a large number of viewing locations. They believe that their customers want to be able to support as many viewing locations as they have rooms.

    The two company's advertising reflects the differing philosophies. Dish emphasizes their value. DirecTV emphasizes their features. Two different market segments.
     

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