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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Can't Decide...Convince Me To Switch To Dish and The Hopper!


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55 replies to this topic

#41 OFFLINE   Davenlr

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 07:24 PM

I switched from DirecTV to Dish (HR22-100 to Hopper) on April 21st. I view on a 50" 1080p plasma at 7'...

...I cannot answer for how you might think you're getting better video quality from Dish, or even equal.


Maybe he isnt sitting inside his TV :)

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#42 OFFLINE   Stewart Vernon

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 09:12 PM

It simply is impossible that Dish, by down converting 1080i to 1440x1080 instead of 1980x1080 can surpass DirecTV in image quality, assuming similar bandwidth.


Two questions about that...

1. How do you "know" that Dish is converting 1080i from 1920x1080 to 1440x1080? I'm not disputing it, I'm just asking how you "know" this? Do you have a way of measuring this yourself somehow? Or are you just relying on what you read somewhere on the internet? There are lots of false rumors about BOTH companies... and people who leave one for the other tend to have bad things to say about the one they just left.

2. To say it is "impossible" for 1440x1080 to look as good as 1920x1080 is not a good statement. MPEG2 and MPEG4 look different at the same resolutions... and both encoding schemes can be bitstarved... so it is possible for high bitrate 1440x1080 to look superior to low bitrate 1920x1080. Again, I'm not saying it does in this case, I'm just questioning the absolute nature.

I haven't had DirecTV in many many years... and I never had DirecTV with HD... so I can't make a direct comparison. Most customers don't have both Dish and DirecTV at the same time... so most of the comparisons I read on the internet come partially jaded by other bad experiences OR came from improper setups. Some DirecTV customers like their Dish better but it happens that their DirecTV setup was never configured correctly... and vice-versa.

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#43 OFFLINE   sregener

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 03:31 AM

1. How do you "know" that Dish is converting 1080i from 1920x1080 to 1440x1080? I'm not disputing it, I'm just asking how you "know" this?

2. To say it is "impossible" for 1440x1080 to look as good as 1920x1080 is not a good statement.


As a new, first-time Dish customer, and a long-time and now disgruntled DirecTV customer, I don't think a "bad experience" explains my viewpoint. In many ways, I like and prefer the Dish service, but for someone who desires picture quality above all else, Dish pales in comparison. And there's no point in trying to convince people to switch based on incorrect information - an unhappy customer is worse than no customer at all. At best, Dish's picture matches DirecTV's, but I would say that most of what I have seen is not equal, and nothing has surpassed DirecTV.

I suppose you could say I don't know for sure. But I see a loss in detail with my own eyes. Something is causing that, and the "HD Lite" argument seems to be valid. Perhaps they are sending it at full resolution but at such a lower bit-rate than DirecTV that it looks like it must be 1440x1080. The end result is the same: a slightly less detailed picture on static images.

As to point #2, please read my words again. I state "assuming similar bandwidth." I did not see frequent evidence of bit starvation with DirecTV. I do see it with Dish. And that's on top of a loss of resolution.

Make no mistake, I think Dish's picture quality is quite good on most HD channels. We're talking about some rather minor picture differences that a typical viewer will never notice. But for the discerning viewer, DirecTV's is a bit better on some, and much better on Fox Sports Net North, at least based on what I've seen so far. If you must have the absolute best picture you can get, DirecTV is the right choice.

#44 OFFLINE   sregener

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 03:36 AM

Maybe he isnt sitting inside his TV :)


According to CNET and other sites I checked, I'm right in the sweet spot for my television size: http://reviews.cnet....up-your-screen/

THX puts me on the long side of ideal: http://www.thx.com/c...er/hdtv-set-up/

If you sit too far away, picture quality becomes a moot point - your eyes can't resolve the detail on the screen. And if you can't see the picture detail, you can't know how good or bad the picture is unless things are really bad. A 26" set at the foot of your bed is too far away. Even 480i looks good at that distance.

#45 OFFLINE   domingos35

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 04:05 AM

As a new, first-time Dish customer, and a long-time and now disgruntled DirecTV customer, I don't think a "bad experience" explains my viewpoint. In many ways, I like and prefer the Dish service, but for someone who desires picture quality above all else, Dish pales in comparison. And there's no point in trying to convince people to switch based on incorrect information - an unhappy customer is worse than no customer at all. At best, Dish's picture matches DirecTV's, but I would say that most of what I have seen is not equal, and nothing has surpassed DirecTV.

I suppose you could say I don't know for sure. But I see a loss in detail with my own eyes. Something is causing that, and the "HD Lite" argument seems to be valid. Perhaps they are sending it at full resolution but at such a lower bit-rate than DirecTV that it looks like it must be 1440x1080. The end result is the same: a slightly less detailed picture on static images.

As to point #2, please read my words again. I state "assuming similar bandwidth." I did not see frequent evidence of bit starvation with DirecTV. I do see it with Dish. And that's on top of a loss of resolution.

Make no mistake, I think Dish's picture quality is quite good on most HD channels. We're talking about some rather minor picture differences that a typical viewer will never notice. But for the discerning viewer, DirecTV's is a bit better on some, and much better on Fox Sports Net North, at least based on what I've seen so far. If you must have the absolute best picture you can get, DirecTV is the right choice.


i completly disagree with you.
i had directv years ago and on my tv, dish's HD PQ is just as good if not better than directv's
are u sure u even have dish ?
going by your join date(forum)i would say u are here to bash dish
but i could be wrong

Edited by domingos35, 02 May 2012 - 04:13 AM.


#46 OFFLINE   sregener

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 05:01 AM

i completly disagree with you.
i had directv years ago and on my tv, dish's HD PQ is just as good if not better than directv's
are u sure u even have dish ?
going by your join date(forum)i would say u are here to bash dish
but i could be wrong


Wow. I seem to have enemies on every side. A mod slapped me on the wrist for posting too many positive messages about Dish on a DirecTV forum, and now I'm getting hit from the other side for being a Dish-basher.

Read the thread over on DirecTV General Discussion about how DirecTV denies problems with their receivers and see if my purpose here is to bash Dsh. I posted a video showing off the speed of my Hopper, but I suppose anyone could claim it as theirs if you're into conspiracy theories.

I can only say what I see with my own eyes. You are free to have a different opinion. I am happy with Dish and find their picture quality adequate on most channels. But I am in the 1% who are super-fussy about video quality, and I see issues most people do not. I cannot speak of DirecTV's HD quality of a few years ago, because I only had HD from them from 2010-2012. I cannot speak of Dish's PQ before mid-April, as I had never had their service before.

#47 OFFLINE   akw4572

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 07:00 AM

I'm on the fence as well, about switching to Dish. My biggest fear is the pointing of the Dish. My DTV dish is on the side of my house, and has just enough clearance behind the house they just started building next door. I don't want a Dish mounted on my roof, I'd much rather keep the location where it is. The Hopper has me very intrigued, as does a $30 price break for a year.
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#48 OFFLINE   Inkosaurus

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 07:52 AM

I'm on the fence as well, about switching to Dish. My biggest fear is the pointing of the Dish. My DTV dish is on the side of my house, and has just enough clearance behind the house they just started building next door. I don't want a Dish mounted on my roof, I'd much rather keep the location where it is. The Hopper has me very intrigued, as does a $30 price break for a year.


I could be wrong here, as i just woke up. But if memory servers correctly when it comes to degrees and angle the D* birds are slightly lower then E* birds, so if you are just barely peeking over your neighbors roof you should be able to grab the E* ones.

Assuming ofcourse were talking about the ones in the same direction :P

#49 OFFLINE   Jhon69

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 09:08 AM

As a new, first-time Dish customer, and a long-time and now disgruntled DirecTV customer, I don't think a "bad experience" explains my viewpoint. In many ways, I like and prefer the Dish service, but for someone who desires picture quality above all else, Dish pales in comparison. And there's no point in trying to convince people to switch based on incorrect information - an unhappy customer is worse than no customer at all. At best, Dish's picture matches DirecTV's, but I would say that most of what I have seen is not equal, and nothing has surpassed DirecTV.

I suppose you could say I don't know for sure. But I see a loss in detail with my own eyes. Something is causing that, and the "HD Lite" argument seems to be valid. Perhaps they are sending it at full resolution but at such a lower bit-rate than DirecTV that it looks like it must be 1440x1080. The end result is the same: a slightly less detailed picture on static images.

As to point #2, please read my words again. I state "assuming similar bandwidth." I did not see frequent evidence of bit starvation with DirecTV. I do see it with Dish. And that's on top of a loss of resolution.

Make no mistake, I think Dish's picture quality is quite good on most HD channels. We're talking about some rather minor picture differences that a typical viewer will never notice. But for the discerning viewer, DirecTV's is a bit better on some, and much better on Fox Sports Net North, at least based on what I've seen so far. If you must have the absolute best picture you can get, DirecTV is the right choice.



I would suggest you lower your backlight setting on your HDTV if you have never tried that.That was the main thing I did with my 55" LED/LCD HDTV(I used a 50" RPTV before) and my HD PQ with DISH is nothing short of outstanding.My nephew came over the other day and asked me"When did DISH start broadcasting the SYFY channel in 3D"?.I had to tell him it's not 3D,he has DirecTV HD and watches it on his 65" Mitsubishi DLP HDTV.:)

#50 OFFLINE   sregener

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 10:53 AM

I would suggest you lower your backlight setting on your HDTV if you have never tried that.That was the main thing I did with my 55" LED/LCD HDTV(I used a 50" RPTV before) and my HD PQ with DISH is nothing short of outstanding.My nephew came over the other day and asked me"When did DISH start broadcasting the SYFY channel in 3D"?.I had to tell him it's not 3D,he has DirecTV HD and watches it on his 65" Mitsubishi DLP HDTV.:)


I'd lower the backlight setting if I could, but I don't have a backlight on my plasma. It is pretty close to professional calibration settings.

Your anecdote is interesting, but rather inconclusive in my book. When comparing things, you want to control for as many variables as possible, so that you really are comparing the thing, and not stuff around it. In your case, you controlled for the viewer and the channel, but nothing else. Things that could be different include quality and age of the display, display type, display settings, connection type, environment (brightness or darkness of viewing area), and audio. It is a scientific fact that quality audio leads to an increased perception of video quality, which means you should spend double on your speakers and receiver compared to your display.

For me, the only thing that changed was the satellite provider. Same television input, same television, same settings, same audio connection and speakers, in the exact same environment. The only thing I couldn't do was a true A/B setup, since one dish had to go down to make way for the other.

I have to rescind my comments on the Tennis Channel. In watching a little today to confirm my earlier report, I see that the picture is much better. Which leads to believe there was a problem of some sort at the last event I watched, where the cameras were inferior or encoded poorly. Not uncommon with overseas events, but it caught me by surprise. The Tennis Channel looks no worse or better than other HD national channels.

#51 OFFLINE   Grandude

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 11:50 AM

A separate system would require two DPP44s, a duo node for one pair of Hoppers and a solo node for the second Hopper. Or separate dishes for each system. Since the switches required to get five DPP feeds to serve the nodes provides eight DPP feeds, from a technical standpoint four Hoppers should be supported ... five if all eight DPP feeds are used.

I was wondering that, since I have a DPP44 feeding a DP34, is it absolutely a must that the daisy chained switch has to be another DPP switch or can it be a DP34 switch like I have now in my system?

I'm not necessarily thinking of having 3 Hoppers, but the way my cabling is now, it would be simpler to use the daisy chained DP34 for the second Hopper that I want. Note: I do not want the two Hoppers to see each other as it would add a lot of confusion for my wife.

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#52 ONLINE   sigma1914

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 12:16 PM

... But I am in the 1% who are super-fussy about video quality, and I see issues most people do not....


I'm like you and can be picky about PQ and notice differences others don't. It's like HD uncompressed audio - some can hear a huge difference while others, like myself, can not.
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#53 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 04:40 PM

I was wondering that, since I have a DPP44 feeding a DP34, is it absolutely a must that the daisy chained switch has to be another DPP switch or can it be a DP34 switch like I have now in my system?

I don't believe the hopper can talk to anything less than a DPP switch or LNB.

#54 OFFLINE   n-spring

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 05:32 PM

Both of your shortcomings here point to you perhaps misusing your remote.

The Hopper should be buffering two tuners all the time (except when recording with one of those tuners or during DVR playback) like the other Dish DVRs.

The Swap button on the remote should take you back and forth between the two tuners currently being buffered. There is only 1 hour buffer, though, not 90 minutes... but the buffer should be active for as long as you have been tuned to that channel (up to an hour of course).

I don't have a Hopper... but it uses an updated version of 922 firmware... so I'd be surprised if they took the effort to take that capability away.


Stewart, thanks. You are correct. I wasn't aware of the swap key. I thought it was only for PIP.

Is it possible to record an entire program already in progress, or is it possible to only record the remainder of a program?
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#55 OFFLINE   Stewart Vernon

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 06:08 PM

Is it possible to record an entire program already in progress, or is it possible to only record the remainder of a program?


Maybe :)

Since there is only 1 hour of buffer, any program longer than an hour and more than an hour into the program obviously could not be recorded in its entirety.

IF you are watching the channel, and decide you want to record what has already been on... you can press the REC button. Pressing REC again gets you a menu to select the end-time to stop recording.

Some Dish DVRs had settings like "record entire program" and "record until end"... but my 922 just has the settings to determine the end-time for the recording.

The only 100% safe way to be sure in this case that you get the entire program... is to rewind back in the buffer to before (or just at) the start of the program you want to record BEFORE pressing that REC button.

It feels a little awkward the first time or two, but you get used to it... and I've done it a lot when I was pausing something and then realized I needed to be away from the TV longer than I had room in the buffer... so I would then change to record it and watch later.

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#56 OFFLINE   patmurphey

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 08:56 AM

...I'm not necessarily thinking of having 3 Hoppers, but the way my cabling is now, it would be simpler to use the daisy chained DP34 for the second Hopper that I want. Note: I do not want the two Hoppers to see each other as it would add a lot of confusion for my wife.


You don't need to do anything other than have a separator installed in the dual node. Your installer will do that, if requested.




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