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SlingAdapter questions

nhl

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#1 OFFLINE   klingonscum

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Posted 21 June 2011 - 01:45 PM

My situation: I've got a DISHPlayer 722 in my theater room. I want to get a second big HDTV for another room, but unfortunately, the wall I want to put it on is the one wall in the house I didn't put ANY drops on ethernet drop on (so I can't use an HDMI-to-Ethernet rig to "echo" the HDMI TV1 output on my DISHPlayer to it) and it'd be way to difficult to pull any cable for various reasons to it. I also suspect the power outlet is on a different circuit than my theater room as well, which means I can't use HDMI-over-powerline...

Anyway, I was planning on hooking up an HTPC to that 2nd TV with a wireless-N ethernet adapter to get it on my home network. But as for getting the HD from my Theater's 722 to it, I was sort of stuck - I was planning on getting a Slingbox HD, but then I came across this "SlingAdapter" and had some questions I'm hoping somebody on here can answer...

1) Hooking a SlingAdapter up to my 722, will it beam over my home network? Because I have a truly lousy 768kbps DSL internet connection so that's going to be a requirement...

2) Is 54Mbps Wireless-N bandwidth sufficient for stutter-free 1080i via a SlingAdapter?

3) How's the video quality in this situation?

4) Over a home network like this, what kind of lag would I be looking at? Example: if I was hosting a superbowl party and had people watching it in the theater and people watching it on the second "slung to" TV, how much of a delay would the 2nd group have compared to the first group?

5) Here's the biggie: is this a one time wallet hit ($99 to buy the SlingAdapter currently on the DISH website) or does DISH charge a monthly "rental/lease" fee on it like they do with the DVRs themselves?

6) Oh - and is it a requirement that the "slung to" TV watch the same thing that TV1 on the 722 is watching, or can it watch a different show (live and/or recorded) than the "primary" TV is watching?

7) Final question: how many PCs on my home network can be "slung to" simultaneously with this thing? Can they all watch different shows? I realize I'd be limited to 2 "live" channels due to there only being 2 tuners in the 722, but what about recorded ones?

Thanks...

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#2 OFFLINE   apinkel

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 09:37 AM

1) It uses your local network to stream the data, authentication (and I believe control commands) are sent over the internet.

2) With wireless I never give any definites because there are too many factors that impact wireless throughput, especially for streaming video. However, based on the limited testing I've done with my laptop, yes, it should be sufficient.

3) I was impressed with the quality but my viewing platform was not terribly good.
I've only viewed output from my sling adapter on my poor quality laptop display which probably has contrast ratio of 100:1 and color accuracy that would make a graphic designer cry.

4) Never measured it but there is pretty significant lag between when you send a command (like ffwd, change channel, etc.) and when that command gets processed. I'd say around 3-4 seconds.

5) No montly fee.

6) The sling adapter uses TV2 output. Your main TV uses TV1. TV1 and TV2 can watch different channels, different pre-recorded programs at the same time.

7) I haven't tested this but I believe only one device can be using the TV2 output at one time. The reciever should automatically switch into dual mode when a sling client starts using the TV2 output. I also recommend making sure you sign out of the sling session so the dvr can switch out of dual mode.

Another thing to keep in mind is that you will need a PC at the second TV, to start a sling session you will need to open a browser, sign into dish and then navigate to the viewing link. I don't know of any way to automate this via remote control. You'd need something like a gryomouse or similar HTPC type keyboard/mouse combo to be able to control the slung output on TV2.

#3 OFFLINE   klingonscum

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 11:27 AM

1) It uses your local network to stream the data, authentication (and I believe control commands) are sent over the internet.

2) With wireless I never give any definites because there are too many factors that impact wireless throughput, especially for streaming video. However, based on the limited testing I've done with my laptop, yes, it should be sufficient.

3) I was impressed with the quality but my viewing platform was not terribly good.
I've only viewed output from my sling adapter on my poor quality laptop display which probably has contrast ratio of 100:1 and color accuracy that would make a graphic designer cry.

4) Never measured it but there is pretty significant lag between when you send a command (like ffwd, change channel, etc.) and when that command gets processed. I'd say around 3-4 seconds.

5) No montly fee.

6) The sling adapter uses TV2 output. Your main TV uses TV1. TV1 and TV2 can watch different channels, different pre-recorded programs at the same time.

7) I haven't tested this but I believe only one device can be using the TV2 output at one time. The reciever should automatically switch into dual mode when a sling client starts using the TV2 output. I also recommend making sure you sign out of the sling session so the dvr can switch out of dual mode.

Another thing to keep in mind is that you will need a PC at the second TV, to start a sling session you will need to open a browser, sign into dish and then navigate to the viewing link. I don't know of any way to automate this via remote control. You'd need something like a gryomouse or similar HTPC type keyboard/mouse combo to be able to control the slung output on TV2.


Thank you VERY much for the detailed responses; I think I know enough now to risk $99 on it (heck, I think I'm out of contract; I might be able to get one for free). I was already planning to put an HTPC on the new TV anyway so it can run movie jukebox software.

Even if it turns out the quality isn't good enough for a 46" HDTV, it'll be great being able to watch my theater DVR's shows on any of the PCs on my network (4 of em all told at this point). I'm wondering if this is DISH's response to DirecTV's "Whole Home DVR" package. I'm not currently using the TV2 output on my DVR anyway, so the fact the Sling takes it over doesn't really impact me at all.

#4 OFFLINE   klingonscum

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 11:38 AM

Actually, if I could get a little followup on your answer to question 7 - I asked how many PCs could be "slung" to simultaneously, and your response was that only one device can use the TV2 output at a time.

Let me refine that question a bit: say I've got 3 PCs on my network, and I'd like all three of the to receive the SAME TV2 video feed via the Slingadapter and Slingbox software; is this possible?

Thanks again for the response...

#5 OFFLINE   TulsaOK

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 11:47 AM

Only one device can access TV2.
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#6 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 12:25 PM

Actually, if I could get a little followup on your answer to question 7 - I asked how many PCs could be "slung" to simultaneously, and your response was that only one device can use the TV2 output at a time.

Let me refine that question a bit: say I've got 3 PCs on my network, and I'd like all three of the to receive the SAME TV2 video feed via the Slingadapter and Slingbox software; is this possible?

Thanks again for the response...

To refine my answer, let me say that I have many computers and two iPads that can receive the feed. But only one at a time can "sign in."

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#7 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 12:46 PM

The Slingbox does NOT multicast. I can't think of any consumer gear that does.

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#8 OFFLINE   apinkel

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 02:35 PM

I'm not currently using the TV2 output on my DVR anyway, so the fact the Sling takes it over doesn't really impact me at all.


Note that if TV2 is being used by the sling adapter you won't be able to swap between two shows or use PIP functions on TV1.

#9 OFFLINE   klingonscum

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 03:33 PM

Note that if TV2 is being used by the sling adapter you won't be able to swap between two shows or use PIP functions on TV1.


Heh...that reminds me of a funny story (at least, funny to me). My theater is driven by an Epson 8350 projector throwing a 110" diagonal picture on my screen. Last year, I was watching football, and there were two games on different channels that I was interested it, so I used the PiP function to put 'em on side by side.

Annoying mother-in-law walks in, looks for something to complain about, finally the best she can come up with is "you've got that big screen, why on earth are you watching football in those little windows"?

I got up, picked up a tape measure, and measured the diagonal on one of the "little windows". "Hmmm...52 inches. That's a little bigger than a four foot TV. How big is ya'll's TV again?"

Doesn't say a word, turns on her heel, walks out of the room. As Charlie Sheen would say, "still #WINNING"... :hurah::hurah::hurah:

Thought of another question - since only one device at a time can be streamed to by the Sling Adapter, what happens if somebody on a different PC logs into the account - will the stream switch to the new PC, or will the new PC pop up a dialog box indicating that someone else is already logged in?

#10 OFFLINE   mdavej

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 07:02 PM

Not sure, but it does show a message on TV2 if sling is already using it.

BTW, no need to risk $99. You can just take advantage of the free sling promo.

#11 OFFLINE   klingonscum

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 10:05 AM

Not sure, but it does show a message on TV2 if sling is already using it.

BTW, no need to risk $99. You can just take advantage of the free sling promo.


Does that deal require signing up for a 2 year contract or anything? If so, I think I'd rather pay the $$...

#12 OFFLINE   tcatdbs

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 12:19 PM

No contacts... just pay $99, and hopefully get a $99 card in the mail in a few weeks. I got mine in 2 days, took 5 minutes to set-up and start watching a show on my PC. Took 10 minutes go get the android app and start watching a show on my VM Optimus. I'll be very happy once I get the rebate card.

#13 OFFLINE   klingonscum

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 12:41 PM

It says they recommend a 3Mbps upstream connection for HD.

My DSL connection is only 768kbps upstream...but I'm going to be watching this on my home network, not across the internet; given that my home network is wired Gigabit, does that mean HD shouldn't be a problem streaming from my Sling Adapter to PCs on my network? They're not stupidly streaming the video up to DISH.COM and back down again, are they?

#14 OFFLINE   apinkel

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 03:18 PM

It says they recommend a 3Mbps upstream connection for HD.

My DSL connection is only 768kbps upstream...but I'm going to be watching this on my home network, not across the internet; given that my home network is wired Gigabit, does that mean HD shouldn't be a problem streaming from my Sling Adapter to PCs on my network? They're not stupidly streaming the video up to DISH.COM and back down again, are they?


See my initial response to your first question.

#15 OFFLINE   AVJohnnie

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Posted 24 June 2011 - 10:31 AM

...Another thing to keep in mind is that you will need a PC at the second TV...


Yea... I really wish they hadn't decided to "kill" the dedicated catcher adapter - oh well... :rolleyes:

#16 OFFLINE   apinkel

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Posted 26 June 2011 - 07:48 AM

Yea... I really wish they hadn't decided to "kill" the dedicated catcher adapter - oh well... :rolleyes:


I couldn't agree more.

#17 OFFLINE   klingonscum

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Posted 29 June 2011 - 01:42 PM

Got it, installed it, really like it. However, going to the "$99 back" page gave me an error, so I've got an email in to Dish's support desk about it.

Installation was fantastically easy - just plug the thing into the USB port on the back of the 722/722k and you're done, there's not even a power cord as it draws it's power through the USB port.

Actually running the thing was a bit of a pain; the Dish Remote Access site is INCREDIBLY slow, and on initial install, it's a pain - I use Chrome as my browser and it didn't immediately tell me "this isn't going to work unless you use Internet Explorer" until I got several very slow-loading pages deep into the process. At that point I had to close down Chrome, start up IE, and begin the set up process all over again with the slow loading pages. It also takes quite a bit of time for the stream to begin, and when it does begin, it starts off at a fairly low quality that scared me for a bit until it ramped up to 8000+kbps and the picture started really looking nice.

Over my home network, I was seeing 8000+kbps speeds (I discovered the ethernet port on the 722 is only 100Mbps; I thought I'd screwed up the cable I made for it, but that's still plenty for this). The picture quality was really, really good...but not quite "directly hooked up to HDMI" good unfortunately. I'm not sure if it will be good enough for the 47" HDTV I plan to put in the 2nd room. And it's just stereo sound; apparently it doesn't do AC-3, which means if the 2nd TV you've got is hooked up to a surround sound system, you're going to be stuck with Dolby Pro-Logic...

The interface is clunky - I understand why people were bellyaching at not having the regular Sling interface that actually shows the remote. I didn't find all that much lag using the FFW/RW/Skip Fwd/Back buttons (a second or two), but I DID find that whenever I used them, the audio/video would get out of sync, which was annoying.

I know I sound like I'm doing nothing but complain about it, but that's not my intent - it's a really cool little (and I do mean "little" - I couldn't believe how small it was) product, and it's really neat being able to stream my DVR to any PC on my network. I also tried it on my Desktop at work; it was sub-SD quality because of my lousy 384kbps upstream internet connection, but frankly I didn't even expect it to work at that bandwidth. And streaming to my iPhone is REALLY cool with really good quality (amazing what sizing an HD picture down to 320x240 does for you :D ) - I love the fact that I effectively now have a live TV in my iPhone; this would have been great when I still had Texans tickets (assuming I could get a connection in Reliant Stadium) for watching the replays they won't show you in the stadium on the screens there because the fans might hurt the refs...

Anybody know if you can get two of these and get the $99 back for both, or is it just "one per household"? Because I've got another 722k upstairs (my kids' machine) and they'd love being able to watch their recorded "Dora the Explorer" and "Ben-10"'s in my theater downstairs...

#18 OFFLINE   apinkel

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Posted 29 June 2011 - 02:39 PM

I'd say that's a pretty good summary of my opinion of the sling adapter as well.

I agree that the non-local network streaming to smartphone/laptop is handy to have and I also really like that it gives you HD (or at least near HD quality) from TV2 which is otherwise restricted to SD output only.

My biggest wishes are for enhancements to the browser based client. I'd like to see:
-Ability to control the interface via remote
-Add local buffer at the client side so replay and rewind commands can skip back thru the local buffer. This may also help handle periodic network glitches that might interfere with the stream.

#19 OFFLINE   klingonscum

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 03:10 PM

Did anybody on here with a Sling Adapter have any problem getting to the web page to get the $99 prepaid card for taking advantage of the "freeTVEverywhere" promotion? I can get the promo page to come up:

http://www.dishnetwo...re/default.aspx

But when I go to the clickable link to "get sling adapter reward", I get "The system is currently unavailable":

https://customersupp...epSlingOffer.do

I had a truly laughable conversation on live chat asking about it; here is the relevant transcript condensed down (but word for word):

Rep: Hello <You>. How may I help you today?

Me: Hi. I ordered a SlingAdapter as part of the "Home TV Everywhere - Free!" promotion a couple/three weeks ago... But when I go to the web page to redeem the $99 prepaid card, I keep getting "The system is currently unavailable". I sent in a support email about it, but never got a response.

Rep: I’m very sorry to hear that you are having an issue. I’d be happy to resolve that for you.

Me: Great

Rep: I regret to inform you that we are having issues with the web site now. Shall I give the steps to reset password?

Me: My password isn't the problem.

Rep: Okay. I request you to try after sometime.

Me: I'm logged in just fine - but the page where I'm supposed to register for my refund isn't coming up.

Rep: You will be able to login. Yes, I understand your concern. We are having website issue and your technical department is working on that to resolve it. You can try after sometime you will get that page.

Me: Ok - I just wanted to make sure that I wasn't going to miss the promotion because the "Get Sling Adapter Reward" page isn't working.

Rep: You will not have any problem <You>, I left a note on your account about the issue.

Me: Ok, thanks - I'll give it another week.

Rep: You're welcome. Do you have any other questions for me?

Me: One other one...that promotion, does it only apply once per account, or could I get another Sling Adapter for my second HD DVR that I have?

Rep: I am sorry to inform you that as of now we do not have any updates. Feel free to share your thoughts and concerns by e-mailing us at fairdeal@dishnetwork.com. We assure you that we will read every e-mail we receive.

Me: ...So you're saying "no, the promo is only one per household"?

Rep: I do not have any update about that <You>.

*****************

For some reason, during that conversation, I kept hearing those Discover card "Hello, my name is...Peggy" commercials in my head...

#20 OFFLINE   TreborG2

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Posted 10 July 2011 - 09:21 PM

wow.. your chat ... from outside it reads funny ... having been through the same type of stuff.. its just sad.

Just an FYI ..
  • there's only one account per household
  • do you really want to give that 1 account information to your kids? (not that they would be malicious, but what happens if they enter the user/pass in front of someone else? or do it on someone else's computer and that computer logs or even just saves that information)
  • if you have 2 sling adapters on your account, one person logs in to their adapter, the next person to logon, is immediately connected to controlling that same adapter, so they must actively change to the 2nd adapter, to initiate controls (play/etc) and then the first person logs out, logs back in, they've got to change back to the first sling adapter or they're controlling the 2nd one (ie. last in, first controlled) its a hassle but livable.
  • Normally when you're on TV1 or 2 you get an on screen prompt about reboot/update time and can cancel the reboot, there's no warning on the sling screen. (receivers default to 3am, unless users change the time)
  • there was a question up there somewhere about if another pc logs in .. the next pc to log in, if the sling is already in use, the second person gets questioned if they want to take over the sling stream, answering yes takes over the stream from where ever it was slinging to first. The first person slinging gets told someone else logged in.






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