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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Considering FiOS (Tough decision)


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47 replies to this topic

#21 OFFLINE   bobcamp1

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 09:56 AM

Verizon also has month-to month pricing. No two year commitment. I think the price is locked for one year. Usually, Verizon can sign you up afterward for a two-year commitment with a two-year price lock if you decide you like it.

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#22 OFFLINE   billsharpe

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 10:38 AM

I'm confronting the same tough decision. FiOS became available for me last November, which happened to coincide with the end of my latest 2-yr commitment. I've held off so far for a few reasons - I've been pretty happy with D* for about 8 years now, Verizon's DVR just doesn't have enough capacity (though that is somewhat mitigated by not needing hard drive space for their on demand stuff), and my work pays for my Internet access - but won't pay for FiOS.


Perhaps they may pay for it. FiOS Internet is a separate line item on my Verizon bill.
Bill

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#23 OFFLINE   spartanstew

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 10:56 AM

and my work pays for my Internet access - but won't pay for FiOS.


They won't pay for FIOS internet, or they won't pay for FIOS TV?

I've been expensing FIOS internet for 5 years. Why would it matter to your employer who your internet provider is?

I'm sure Directv can't wait to get their hands on your unit.

 
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#24 ONLINE   HoTat2

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 11:48 AM

I agree... it's junk. Hooked up a multiband N router... no problems...


Since I still have a little trouble understanding the in home signal distribution technology for FiOS customers, I assume to use your own Wireless-N router you can either set the FiOS supplied coax enabled router to bridging mode and then use your own router?

And/or the ONT has optional 10/100 ethernet ports (as well as standard RJ11/14 phone jacks) to run separate cat 5/6 cable to from your own router?

#25 OFFLINE   jpl

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 11:54 AM

Since I still have a little trouble understanding the in home signal distribution technology for FiOS customers, I assume to use your own Wireless-N router you can either set the FiOS supplied coax enabled router to bridging mode and then use your own router?

And/or the ONT has optional 10/100 ethernet ports (as well as standard RJ11/14 phone jacks) to run separate cat 5/6 cable to from your own router?


Yes... and yes. You can hook up as ethernet with FiOS internet, allowing you to use whatever router you want. Or you can bridge their router to one of your choosing. The only reason you would need to use coax to the router at all is if you have their TV service AND you use one of their set top boxes (doesn't apply if you have, say, a TiVo). The reason is that the use MoCA for guide data, VOD, and for the multi-room DVR feeds.

The router that Verizon supplies is a combo router/NIM.

When I first got FiOS I only had internet/phone with them (they didn't offer TV in my area yet). They hooked me up as ethernet, and gave me a Linksys router to use. When I upgraded to TV service, they swapped out my router for an Actiontec, and hooked a coax from the cable splitter to the router.

#26 ONLINE   HoTat2

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 12:22 PM

Yes... and yes. You can hook up as ethernet with FiOS internet, allowing you to use whatever router you want. Or you can bridge their router to one of your choosing. The only reason you would need to use coax to the router at all is if you have their TV service AND you use one of their set top boxes (doesn't apply if you have, say, a TiVo). The reason is that the use MoCA for guide data, VOD, and for the multi-room DVR feeds.
The router that Verizon supplies is a combo router/NIM.

When I first got FiOS (I only had internet/phone with them (they didn't offer TV in my area yet). They hooked me up as ethernet, and gave me a Linksys router to use. When I upgraded to TV service, they swapped out my router for an Actiontec, and hooked a coax from the cable splitter to the router.


Ok, thanks;

So in this example image below of a FiOS ONT from the WiKipedia, if I'm reading it correctly this customer has FiOS internet and telephone service with cabling for both run directly to the ONT. But no TV judging by the lit red indicator LED for "VIDEO" and the empty coax F connector positioned in the upper right of the image?

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#27 OFFLINE   jpl

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 12:39 PM

Ok, thanks;

So in this example image below of a FiOS ONT from the WiKipedia, if I'm reading it correctly this customer has FiOS internet and telephone service with cabling for both run directly to the ONT. But no TV judging by the lit red indicator LED for "VIDEO" and the empty coax F connector positioned in the upper right of the image?

Posted Image


Yeah, I believe that's right. Not sure about the indicator light, but that was what my set-up looked like before I moved to FiOS TV service.

#28 OFFLINE   pjsauter

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 12:46 PM

They won't pay for FIOS internet, or they won't pay for FIOS TV?

I've been expensing FIOS internet for 5 years. Why would it matter to your employer who your internet provider is?


I believe they have a contract with Time Warner to provide business class service. My guess is they get a fairly decent deal, but that's just speculation. TW bills them directly.

#29 OFFLINE   fiendz666

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 02:34 PM

Everyone that I've talked to that has FIOS TV loves it. Personally, I love D* and have no plans on switching. I haven't had one issue with their service.

I do have FIOS for internet and phone. I just received a letter from them that my bill was going up by $10. That would have brought my bill up to close to $100. So, I called them and asked if they had any promotions. They said they would upgrade my internet to 25/25 and keep my phone the way it is. The price was $95/month. But they offered me $30 off my bill for a year. Once the year is up, I can call back and get more credits added. Not a bad deal for phone and internet.

They tried to get me to switch to FIOS for TV but I just can't. I am so happy with D* service. No complaints here :D

#30 OFFLINE   bullwinklehdtv

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 05:34 PM

I have FIOS for phone and internet, but I've never been able to justify switching from DirecTV. The bundles sound attractive, but once you start adding in equipment (I have four DVRs), the price isn't that great. As others have mentioned, they have nowhere near the sports in HD, and what they have isn't all available in the lower priced bundles.

#31 OFFLINE   billsharpe

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 10:54 AM

I have FIOS for phone and internet, but I've never been able to justify switching from DirecTV. The bundles sound attractive, but once you start adding in equipment (I have four DVRs), the price isn't that great. As others have mentioned, they have nowhere near the sports in HD, and what they have isn't all available in the lower priced bundles.


The lower capacity of the FiOS DVR is the main reason I won't switch to FiOS TV. When I checked prices in detail last month it was virtually a wash in price between FiOS TV and DirecTV. I already have FiOS internet and phone service and am quite happy with it. Also happy with DirecTV and committed to another two years by adding a second DVR.
Bill

Family room: Sony Bravia KDL-40SL130
Living room: Sceptre 32 inch

#32 OFFLINE   apet8464

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 11:02 PM

For anyone considering a move from DirecTV to FiOS, I may be able to provide some guidance. I know I'm not alone in being a long-time DirecTV customer that now has the option to move to FiOS.

To put things in perspective, I have been a DirecTV subscriber since 2002, and was with Dish Network several years prior to that. As for DVR hardware, I started out with DishPlayers (precursor to the now deceased MS Ultimate TV). When I moved to DirecTV in 2002, I started with three DSR6000 Series 1 DirecTivos, and later, replaced one with a series 2 model which I actually still have. When the HR10-250 came out, I got one of those too, and over the years, did all the usual hacks and tweaks (i.e. Instant Cake, PTVnet, drive expansions, etc.). Like many others, I finally succumbed to the MPEG-4 HD content migration, and in late 2007, I reluctantly gave up my beloved HR10 Tivo for a pair of new HR21-700s that I picked up at Costco (home of the impulse buy).

Although the HR21s were a little flakey at first, most of the nastier bugs had already been worked out by then, and they ended up being solid DVRs. As I recall, the biggest things I missed from the Tivos were the dual-live buffers, and the true 30-sec skip - though the HR2x DVRs eventually got the tuner swap. I also added a 1TB eSATA to each of the HR21s shortly after getting them, and even though that slowed them down quite a bit, in general I have been very satisfied with them.

When FiOS came to town in early 2009, I happily ditched my overpriced $70/month Comcast cable modem for a FiOS internet and landline bundle. I was still under a 2 yr commitment w/ DirecTV at that time, so FiOS TV wasn't even a consideration. Beginning in May of this year, I began to have serious problems with one of my HR21s. In hindsight, I now suspect it was related to a widespread firmware glitch that was pushed out, but I didn't know that at the time, and so in late June, I made an executive decision to finally go for the FiOS TV. My main motivator was saving money, while also getting an upgrade to 35/35 internet service. Of course, going from 1 TB to 160 GB was out of the question, so the FiOS DVR wasn't going to cut it. Having many fond Tivo memories, my decision was easy. I went ahead and ordered a pair of Tivo Premieres, and proceeded with ordering FiOS TV service.

What follows is my experience with ordering FiOS TV service. First of all, I wasn't able to specify cable cards when I ordered my new FiOS bundle online, but after a live chat with a relatively helpful CSR, it was suggested that I go ahead and place the order with basic set top boxes and then call in later and have them change the order to replace the set top boxes with cable cards. The best install date I was able to get at that point was July 5th, which was about a week out. Acceptable. I received an email confirmation for my FiOS bundle order moments later, including my assigned install date of July 5th, and I promptly ordered the Tivo Premieres. A few days later, I called FiOS to have the cable cards reflected on the order, and was surprised to learn that they had no record of my order. After several transfers and disconnects, and about an hour of my time, I was finally connected to a web order CSR, who researched my situation and informed me that my order had "fallen out of the system" and would need to be placed again. She then kept me on the phone while she entered my order in again via the same web order form I had used (which I could have done in half the time). When she was nearly done, she informed me that my install date would be pushed out to July 16th! After some serious whining and subsequent conversations with a supervisor and then someone in retention, the best they could do was the 16th. As before, I received an email confirming the order and my install appt. But wait - it gets better. On the 14th, I received a call from an automated system verifying my install on the 15th - yes, the 15th. Of course, I had blocked out my calendar for the 16th, and as luck would have it, I had several work-related meetings on the 15th - including one I could not ditch. Not wanting to loose my appt., I confirmed for the 15th. BTW - they give you an all day window, so the night before, in preparation for the possibility that the installer would end up arriving moments after I left for my afternoon meeting, I spent several hours cleaning up 10 years of coax cables, patch cords, and orphaned power bricks. I kid you not, there was some serious spaghetti behind my TVs. My house has 4 coax runs to every TV area, so I also labeled everything so the installer would at least have a chance at successfully installing something.

Fortunately, the installer arrived in the morning when I was still home. When I mentioned the cable cards, he said he was unaware of any cable cards on the order, but that he had some in the truck. He also told me he had never installed them before. Anyway, the install went fairly smooth, and after making a call to one of his colleagues, the M-cards were activated and the Tivos were up and running. I will say that my general impression was that the installer was fairly experienced, so the fact that he had never worked with cable cards before goes to show you how few FiOS subscribers opt for Tivos.

Anyway, I see that this post is getting ridiculously long, so I'll share my subsequent 10-days of FiOS/Tivo experiences in another post.

Edited by apet8464, 26 July 2010 - 11:26 PM.


#33 OFFLINE   winstoda

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 07:30 AM

I just left Fios TV after 2.5 years. Still have phone and internet. My main reason for leaving was the terrible DVR they offer and the monthly equipment costs. Having been a Fios TV customer from day 1 in my area the other thing that bothered me was the evolution of the programming packages. While I was able to keep an old package any change I made - to upgrade internet speed, etc - meant a large price hike and abandoning my old TV package.

I had an HD Tivo with two S cards and a Fios HD DVR plus two HD boxes. No premiums. With phone and 20/5 internet I was paying $180 a month. Tolerable but not spectacular.

A few days in with DTV and I'm content with my decision. I see no difference in picture quality. I lost two stations that I watched often - CSN Philly HD and AMC HD - but I can live with that. I gained MASN2 HD which was only SD on Fios in my area. DTV DVR (HR24) rocks and the multi-room works flawlessly. Plus now I have Sunday Ticket which will make the football season a pleasure. Fios only gave my Philly locals. As a Ravens fan that made for a long NFL season.

#34 OFFLINE   Hutchinshouse

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 08:08 AM

I have Fios TV running side by side with DirecTV. As for PQ, pretty much DirecTV's HD is as good or better. Fios's SD is slightly better on some channels and a lot better on a few.

The DVR is pretty stinky but it is a lot better than the Comcast piece o' crap I had when I had them.

I love the internet speed but I have seen many reliability issues with Fios and the Rube Goldberg nature of their setup makes it difficult to see what is going on while their customer support, while very friendly, is very slow and pretty much clueless.

I have seen breakups on TV (particularly on On Demand) when a phone call comes in and problems with my internet connection when that happens.

Just about every Fios customer I know has had hardware replaced at least once in the first few months. Either they have problems with hardware or that is just their way of fixing problems.

The router is another POS. They do not have a Wireless N router at this point and the Wireless G is pretty old.

I use them for additional channels I don't get on DirecTV (like Washington locals and a few HD channels) and for overflow and On Demand. The incremental cost to me after phone and internet is minimal, so it is worth it.

You can often get several months free of a premium (I am just finishing a three month stint with HBO/Cinemax at no cost) but finding that stuff can be painful on their webpage.

What I have heard for future expansion (as they are filled to the max) is not packing more on a QAM (on dslreports, there is a guy there who seems to have inside info and it makes me think that the avsforum report was a one-time thing...maybe to fix a temporary issue) but in going to IP and the new boxes they are testing are MPEG4 capable, which should help them quite a bit.

From the lack of out of town sports, especially HD, I could NEVER use them as my primary TV source as long as I can get DirecTV. And I don't think they will ever have enough bandwidth to compete on that front.


Wow, I’ve never heard that before. All reviews I’ve read stated FiOS was slightly better due to less HD compression than DIRECTV. Does “running side by side” mean the same TV was used when comparing FiOS to DIRECTV? Did ya review fast motion content too?

I’d love to have FiOS internet. Now that DIRECTV has my HD channel, no need for me to switch to FiOS. I love my HR24 too. :D

#35 OFFLINE   tonyd79

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 08:29 AM

Wow, I've never heard that before. All reviews I've read stated FiOS was slightly better due to less HD compression than DIRECTV. Does "running side by side" mean the same TV was used when comparing FiOS to DIRECTV? Did ya review fast motion content too?

I'd love to have FiOS internet. Now that DIRECTV has my HD channel, no need for me to switch to FiOS. I love my HR24 too. :D


Yes. Same TV. And I am serious about PQ. Small issues annoy me so I notice everything.

Fios is good and I usually recommend it to friends who are not into sports or cannot get satellite but I get a more consistent picture on satellite than fios. That may be a local or installation issue (fios seems more installation temperamental maybe because it is still really cable and local networking can have an affect) but it is what I am seeing.
LR: HR34-700, H24-200, Fios DVR, BD350 Blu Ray, Roku Netflix Player, Chromecast, Sony 65w850 TV
BR: HR21-200, Viso 32LX, DB350 Blu Ray
Dish: Slimline, SWM8
Other: genieGo

#36 OFFLINE   spartanstew

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 08:31 AM

Wow, I’ve never heard that before.


That's my experience too. I have D*, but most of my neighbors have FIOS. All different displays, but I've calibrated most of them. Can't see any FIOS picture advantage and guess which house is most often used for get togethers, movie nights and sporting events? Mine - the lone D* house.

I'm sure Directv can't wait to get their hands on your unit.

 
Directv customer since 2000

#37 OFFLINE   Hutchinshouse

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 08:50 AM

That's my experience too. I have D*, but most of my neighbors have FIOS. All different displays, but I've calibrated most of them. Can't see any FIOS picture advantage and guess which house is most often used for get togethers, movie nights and sporting events? Mine - the lone D* house.


I guess you learn something new every day. A lower bit rate can have a better picture. Not to make an issue out of this, but I have to ask. A zillion times I’ve seen posts stating DIRECTV has better HD quality than DISH due to compression rates. I’ve seen countless micro blocking complaints too due to compression rates.

What magic algorithm is DIRECTV using to beat FiOS’ higher bit rate, yet DISH cannot beat DIRECTV’s higher bit rate? I thought when comparing apples to apples, less compression always wins.

#38 OFFLINE   cforrest

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 09:14 AM

I have both FIOS TV and Directv in my condo on both my TVs, all with the same settings on both HDMI inputs, FIOS is sharper. I still do my primary viewing on D* but if I ever switch over the picture from FIOS is better. To each their own I guess, but that is what I see with my eyes in my place.

And the red light on the ONT for video, means video is provisioned but signal level is too low. Dirty fiber or bad drop, service call time!

D* Setup:

Slimline (AU9-S) w/no multiswitch
(1) HR21-100 0x87F (7/8/08 Made in Mexico) via HDMI to Pioneer PDP-6020FD
(1) HR24-100 0x87F (11/9/10 Made in Thailand) via HDMI to Panasonic TC-P58S2

FIOS 150/65


#39 OFFLINE   spartanstew

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 09:26 AM

I guess you learn something new every day. A lower bit rate can have a better picture. Not to make an issue out of this, but I have to ask. A zillion times I’ve seen posts stating DIRECTV has better HD quality than DISH due to compression rates. I’ve seen countless micro blocking complaints too due to compression rates.

What magic algorithm is DIRECTV using to beat FiOS’ higher bit rate, yet DISH cannot beat DIRECTV’s higher bit rate? I thought when comparing apples to apples, less compression always wins.


Well, to be fair, it's possible that FIOS has a better picture, but if it does, it's by a minimal amount (and my comment was more focused on the fact that they're the same, not that D* is better). So minimal that when going from house to house and display to display, it's not noticeable.

Now, if I had D* and FIOS set up on the same display next to each other (like forrest does), perhaps I'd see the difference. But I don't and I doubt many people do.

It's similar to black levels on displays that people get so worked up over. If you compare the black level on the best display to the black level on the next best display side-by-side, you'd might see a difference. However, without having two displays side-by-side, 99% of viewers wouldn't notice the difference.

So, IMO, switching to FIOS because of some leap in picture quality is a falacy. The quality is just too close to notice in real world viewing.

I'm sure Directv can't wait to get their hands on your unit.

 
Directv customer since 2000

#40 OFFLINE   Hutchinshouse

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Posted 27 July 2010 - 09:33 AM

Well, to be fair, it's possible that FIOS has a better picture, but if it does, it's by a minimal amount (and my comment was more focused on the fact that they're the same, not that D* is better). So minimal that when going from house to house and display to display, it's not noticeable.

Now, if I had D* and FIOS set up on the same display next to each other (like forrest does), perhaps I'd see the difference. But I don't and I doubt many people do.

It's similar to black levels on displays that people get so worked up over. If you compare the black level on the best display to the black level on the next best display side-by-side, you'd might see a difference. However, without having two displays side-by-side, 99% of viewers wouldn't notice the difference.

So, IMO, switching to FIOS because of some leap in picture quality is a falacy. The quality is just too close to notice in real world viewing.


I agree, I would not switch for a miniscule improvement (if any) in picture quality. Programming and H/W a big consideration too.




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