Jerry - Thanks for this info.
OK here are the answers.
As posted in two other threads including one I started myself I paid $549 and $17 shipping. Box is activated owned when it gets to me. I would not accept shipment if it were not already tested and activated.
I will not give you the dealer contact details since he is a real working person and I don't want a bunch of lookyloos just calling him up without any intention of buying.
The method I used to find an owned hr34 is one I always use to purchase anything Research Research Research. There are thousands of DirecTV Dealers. The big ones always mentioned on this sort of forum are hardly ever as friendly to consumers as the guy whose next sale means he gets to go to the grocery store on the way home instead of eating leftovers.
So you get online and start finding smaller, entreprenurial dealers who are feeding thier families on a daily basis by being customer friendly. Eventually you will find one or more that are selling what you want at a reasonable price and with great service. Great service means doing what you want.
It took me three days of casual surfing and emailing to find such a dealer. Better even than first expected.
If you or someone you know wants to try to purchase any DirecTV equipment owned, just ask. I, got a brand new HR24 owned at the same time from this great dealer.
I am not being coy here, just trying to keep my dealer from getting way too many calls. I have given contact details to eight folks from here already.
I'm a little uncomfortable reading that the receiver was delivered to you "pre-activated". Have you confirmed this receiver is on your account on the DIRECTV web site (under "My Equipment")?
Also, have you confirmed with DIRECTV that the receiver status is "owned" (not "leased")? It's one thing for the seller to say it's owned, but it's another for DIRECTV to document it as such...