Modifying one's expectations downward does not address the question of how to improve performance.
As DIRECTV has decided that performance is not an issue (and they're supported by legions of apologists that testify regularly that it isn't), the best next options are to reward them with lots of your money (an amount approximately the cost of a 18-24 month ETF) to lease equipment that is currently performing better or seek services elsewhere.
Speed is relavent.
For instance, the difference in the time it takes to change channels between a HD DVR and an HD receiver.
How long is that ?
What would we do with that bit of time if we had it change instantaneous ?
Would we get up out of our recliner and go play a game, have a meal, enjoy the company of a lady. Nope, not enough time to really count.
OK, let's say that we had instant channel changes. I could go around the guide a few more times per day. Did that get me more or better programming ? No. Did that get me enough time to complete any task ? No.
Did it let me go make any more money. No.
What did the speed up of the receiver get me ? Nothing, other than the fact that I can now look and say "Wow, that changes channels fast". Whooopeeee.
If you do not like the system and have left it, why are you here ?
Are you looking for help ?
Are you trying to help others ?
I am here to learn and to try to help others with some minor problems that can be changed with settings, etc.