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Dish Network HD or Comcast Cable HD?


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25 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   beanman222

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Posted 14 April 2006 - 10:33 PM

Hello...
I'm new to the HD world... I just purchased a Panasonic 50" Plasma TV and I don't know which way to go.

I currently have standard Dish Network for viewing movies. I also have Comcast Cable which is used for viewing local channels regular TV. This all goes in to a Video Distribution Center that allows me to send this to various rooms.

I want to switch everything over to one or the other, but I am not sure which would provide a better picture on the Plasma TV.

HD Dish Network or Comcast Cable HD???

Thanks...

Beanman222

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#2 OFFLINE   Powie

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Posted 15 April 2006 - 06:21 AM

Hello...


HD Dish Network or Comcast Cable HD???

Thanks...

Beanman222


Well just my experience. I bought my HD setup about a year ago, and was on Comcast then. I upgraded to their HD / Digital package. I was disappointed that part of their content was still analog only and looked like crap. I also had a Motorola/DVR set top box, which seemed to regularly drop audio for a second or two every couple of minutes. At the time they had locals in HD which was a big part of trying Comcast's HD. But the audio glitches were enough to drive me away, as well as the price. I switched over to Dish last September I believe, and while suffering a few minor growing pains with the 942, it worked much better than Comcast. Recently Dish added the locals in HD so I've upgraded to the 622, it has a few issues, and I've only had it a few days now. But I am sure they are working hard to resolve them and soon it will be as stable as my 942 was. Other than that check your line of sight will be clear. Any HOA restrictions? My townhouse required some paperwork so I could mount it to the building. While the FCC says we can have dishes, HOA still controls what can be physically attached to their building.

Note/edit: I know you mention you have dish now, but will all content be avail w/o another dish, and I mention the hoa stuff as just a general comment not directed at you but for anyone else reading who has hoa to deal wtih.
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#3 OFFLINE   jadiff

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Posted 15 April 2006 - 07:49 AM

This is the same dilemma that I faced in January. I had Comcast for locals and internet. Dish for the majority of TV viewing. I bought a plasma and wanted to upgrade to an HD set-up with Dish and they wanted $800. I knew that the Dish set-up (the 942) was going to be replaced within a few weeks with the ViP622. So I opted to go with Comcast which had no upfront costs.

Now I am ready to dump Comcast entirely. Their stb's are very buggy, and the price you pay is for very limited HD content. I understand that the ViP's can be buggy also, and the Comcast boxes are to be replaced this fall.

You may have to wait for a few weeks/months to get the ViP though. They are in short supply and high demand. So it seems that they are reserved for existing Dish HD customers or new customers.

If you can manage, I would recommend dish over Comcast.
-More HD content
-Better (in my experience) receivers
-Better value for your dollar

Good luck, keep us posted.

#4 OFFLINE   DP1

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Posted 15 April 2006 - 08:07 AM

Well while you're making up your mind, in the short term you should prolly just upgrade your Comcast system to HD because normally it doesnt cost much of anything upfront to do that. That way you can start enjoying HD on the Panny, soon. And theres no long term commitment to simply do that.

Whats the HD channel line-up in your area on Comcast? Some areas offer more HD than others. Do you want movie channels in HD? Many Comcast areas offer HBO/Sho/Starz!/Cinemax in HD. Dish currently only has HBO/Sho. But Dish offers more HD overall.

Do you want a HD-DVR.. or happy enough with a non DVR box? With Comcast that might only be the difference between paying about $5 a month or $10 a month for either of the 2 boxes. With Dish you have to decide if you want to pay a lot upfront for the hardware to have no 18 month programming comitment, or pay much less upfront and have one. The HD-DVR will still set you back 299.00 upfront even with the comittent. About 650.00 without it.

This all might sound pro Comcast and I dont mean it to. Heck I just switched back to Dish myself after having Comcast for a couple years. But my point is, it might take you a lil while to come to a long term decision, so why not grap up a Comcast HD box in the meantime and start watching HD right away. You can always switch over to Dish HD anytime you want.

#5 OFFLINE   jmsteffen

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Posted 17 April 2006 - 03:58 AM

I was at my sister's house yesterday for Easter dinner and was watching her new HD Comcast... Some channels looked fine but I couldn't believe how bad some of the channels looked. Even though she has the all digital STB, many of the stations looked grainy, as compared to what I'm used to. It reminded me of why I switched to E* in the first place...

#6 OFFLINE   Rodney

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Posted 17 April 2006 - 05:05 AM

Easy choice in my area. Comcast has 17 HD channels including locals. Dish has 31 HD channels including locals. A no brainer.

#7 OFFLINE   nataraj

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Posted 22 April 2006 - 12:38 PM

I've comcast but am thinking of switching to dish - because of number of hd channels (I've got bored with INHD).

The biggest plus for Comcast - in my book - are free HD-DVRs. Any number of them. You don't need to put $300 "lease" fee - and that too can get only one.

And local HD channels too - which dish doesn't have for most places. Don't know about yours.

#8 OFFLINE   davidxlai

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Posted 22 April 2006 - 06:19 PM

I really don't like Comcast. I used to use Comcast with a CableCARD setup. Some channels would fade in and out. They replaced 3 CableCARDs and could not fix the problem. And they are constantly raising their prices. I finally had enough and cut them off. Now I have only CBS in HD from LA (I am in the San Francisco Bay Area) for network stuff. I don't regret it. In a few weeks I should have my locals on HD.

Hello...
I'm new to the HD world... I just purchased a Panasonic 50" Plasma TV and I don't know which way to go.

I currently have standard Dish Network for viewing movies. I also have Comcast Cable which is used for viewing local channels regular TV. This all goes in to a Video Distribution Center that allows me to send this to various rooms.

I want to switch everything over to one or the other, but I am not sure which would provide a better picture on the Plasma TV.

HD Dish Network or Comcast Cable HD???

Thanks...

Beanman222



#9 OFFLINE   foojay

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Posted 22 April 2006 - 06:32 PM

Who has a better picture quality? Both E* and D* do no send the full HD signal, HD Lite is what I have heard it referred to. I do not know if Comcast does the same thing. Alot of Comcast's areas are broadcast all digital, so if we take that part out of the discussion who has the better picture quality?

#10 OFFLINE   foojay

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Posted 22 April 2006 - 06:33 PM

Oh and the Moto boxes Comcast uses are plain horrible. All sorts of bugs from unresponsiveness, to audio dropouts and just an overall crappy interface.

#11 OFFLINE   nataraj

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Posted 22 April 2006 - 06:50 PM

Who has a better picture quality? Both E* and D* do no send the full HD signal, HD Lite is what I have heard it referred to. I do not know if Comcast does the same thing. Alot of Comcast's areas are broadcast all digital, so if we take that part out of the discussion who has the better picture quality?


From what I hear - Comcast. They send full HD (or whatever feed they get !) for both network and local HD. BTW, if you switch from dish (like I did a year back) you can get very good rates.

#12 OFFLINE   obermi

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Posted 22 April 2006 - 07:10 PM

I switch from Cox Cable to E and have been very happy it! Lot more HD cannels with E. And better picture. Can have more DVR's with E than with cox. Cox one DVR per family.

#13 OFFLINE   foojay

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Posted 22 April 2006 - 10:26 PM

From what I hear - Comcast. They send full HD (or whatever feed they get !) for both network and local HD. BTW, if you switch from dish (like I did a year back) you can get very good rates.



Yeah Comcast gives me $25 off a month b/c I was a Dish customer.

#14 OFFLINE   davidxlai

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Posted 23 April 2006 - 12:25 PM

For how long?

Yeah Comcast gives me $25 off a month b/c I was a Dish customer.



#15 OFFLINE   foojay

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Posted 23 April 2006 - 09:02 PM

For how long?



A year.

#16 OFFLINE   nataraj

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Posted 23 April 2006 - 09:05 PM

A year.


Thats the reason I'm getting back to dish now after a year of switching to comcast ;)

#17 OFFLINE   steelhorse

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Posted 24 April 2006 - 06:05 AM

I didn't think Comcast offered an HD DVR. They don't show one on the web site.

#18 OFFLINE   LtMunst

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Posted 24 April 2006 - 07:42 AM

From what I hear - Comcast. They send full HD (or whatever feed they get !) for both network and local HD.


No they don't. They compressed the hell out of the NY HD feeds.

#19 OFFLINE   kmcnamara

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Posted 24 April 2006 - 08:02 AM

I didn't think Comcast offered an HD DVR. They don't show one on the web site.

I guess it depends on the area but I think most do. In our area, they have the Motorola 6412 which is a dual tuner HD DVR. There's also a single tuner version.

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#20 OFFLINE   scottchez

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Posted 24 April 2006 - 08:03 AM

I would go find some of the comcast boards and also ask your question there so you can get both sides. Then do a pro and con comparison.

Asking this question on a DBS forum may get more pro dbs answers since people tend to suggest what they currently have.
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#21 OFFLINE   nataraj

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Posted 24 April 2006 - 10:05 PM

Check out avsforum ... lot of info (and cribbing) about Comcast in each local market.

#22 OFFLINE   Steve Mehs

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Posted 24 April 2006 - 11:27 PM

DSL Reports also has a Comcast area, one for Internet and one for Digital Cable.
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#23 OFFLINE   ashu

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Posted 25 April 2006 - 08:41 AM

I just made the decision to switch from Dish's 811 to Adelphia's Motorola 6412 HD-DVR (same as the one Comcast provides in many regions).

As much financial, as a matter of principle. As a relatively new (Dish) customer with no contract, I was miffed about the whole 811-211 upgrade path rigmarole, which was counter to the info about upcoming HD locals and compatibility wiht the 811 that *my* Dish salesperson told me, to make the sale.

While I know I will miss Discovery HD (and to a lesser extent, TNT HD) ... I know that as soon as Comcast finishes their takeover of Adelphia, I'll have those back. And I have no contract with cable, unlike the 18-month'er E* wanted me to sign up for. With Verizon's FIOS on the horizon, and the possibility of CableCard support from two sources and the upcomin Series 3 HD TiVo, no way I wanted to be tied to any contracts!

Quality-wise, it's a wash. HBO/SHO in HD are essentially identical, ESPN & HDNET are better on cable, lHD ocals are better on cable too (but that MAY be because my 811 can't receive them ;) )

Go with whichever is the path of least resistance!

#24 OFFLINE   scharles

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 12:45 PM

I recently got a 42" Sony Grand WEGA HDTV. At that point I had been a Dish Customer for 6 years (Happy Customer too). Well...the $299 ViP 622 cost was a little much to pay to go HD with Dish, so I decided to switch to Adelphia Cable so I can get HD content without the $299 cost.

Adelphia came over a week after I got the TV and converted me over to Cable. AACCKK!!! Analog was HORRIBLE! Not just on the HDTV...but all my TVs!! DVR did not work...despite several calls to Tech Support (which they said I did not know what I was doing...even though I had an E* DVR for 3 years). HD Content...WHAT HD CONTENT?? A few network shows on Prime time...and Discovery. What little there was was often jerky. And there was never anything on to watch!!

Anyway...I was VERY dissappointed with cable and the call that I was going to make the Dish the day after Cable was installed to cancel Dish Network ended up being the call to get the ViP 622 and install it! It was a very long 4 week wait for ViP622 to be installed...but well worth it. The ViP was installed 2 weeks ago...and the HDTV stuff is great! The SD channels look so much better...and I could not be happier now that I am back with Dish....except that I probably should have got a 50 inch TV vs. the 42 inch.

#25 OFFLINE   treiher

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Posted 05 May 2006 - 06:40 AM

I've had our 42" Panasonic Plasma with a Dish 942 receiver since December. I cannot believe all the complements I have received on the picture quality, even for the standard def. channels. The latest was the a/c repair guy, who according to my wife, literally did a double-take at just a plain old picture on Fox News. He said he had an HDTV (she didn't ask what type) with cable and could not believe the difference in picture quality. The common denominator among these people seems to be cable. I'm sure it varies depending on the company. Everyone in the Austin area pretty much has Time Warner or COX. But the interesting part is it seems to be more about viewing standard def. channels on an HDTV.

I think when making this decision (cable vs. Dish) people tend to focus on HD content and quality which they should, but also forget about the standard def. channels. You still wind up watching a lot of standard def. programming and I can't imagine thowing an analog signal on my 42" plasma. Since many cable companies still have a percentage of analog only channels, that's exactly what you would get with some of the cable companies. Anyway, just my two cents.




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