Jump to content


Welcome to DBSTalk


Sign In 

Create Account
Welcome to DBSTalk. Our community covers all aspects of video delivery solutions including: Direct Broadcast Satellite (DBS), Cable Television, and Internet Protocol Television (IPTV). We also have forums to discuss popular television programs, home theater equipment, and internet streaming service providers. Members of our community include experts who can help you solve technical problems, industry professionals, company representatives, and novices who are here to learn.

Like most online communities you must register to view or post in our community. Sign-up is a free and simple process that requires minimal information. Be a part of our community by signing in or creating an account. The Digital Bit Stream starts here!
  • Reply to existing topics or start a discussion of your own
  • Subscribe to topics and forums and get email updates
  • Send private personal messages (PM) to other forum members
  • Customize your profile page and make new friends
 
Guest Message by DevFuse

Photo

DirecTV vs. FiOS


  • This topic is locked This topic is locked
46 replies to this topic

#26 OFFLINE   captain_video

captain_video

    Icon

  • Registered
  • 808 posts
Joined: Nov 21, 2005

Posted 05 March 2007 - 07:11 AM

You can buy RF modulators for any UHF or VHF channel. They are readily available at a cheap price for channels 3 or 4 but start getting pricey for other channels. I think RatShack has one for about $20-30. They do make it easy to share video sources to other TVs around the house but you lose a lot in the process. You'll only get monaural audio in most cases (Dolby Digital is totally out of the question) and the video will be degraded from all of the modulation/demodulation that takes place at both ends. If the remote TVs are small screen sets the loss will probably be negligible.

...Ads Help To Support This Site...

#27 OFFLINE   jpl

jpl

    Hall Of Fame

  • Registered
  • 2,776 posts
Joined: Jul 09, 2006

Posted 05 March 2007 - 07:22 AM

You can buy RF modulators for any UHF or VHF channel. They are readily available at a cheap price for channels 3 or 4 but start getting pricey for other channels. I think RatShack has one for about $20-30. They do make it easy to share video sources to other TVs around the house but you lose a lot in the process. You'll only get monaural audio in most cases (Dolby Digital is totally out of the question) and the video will be degraded from all of the modulation/demodulation that takes place at both ends. If the remote TVs are small screen sets the loss will probably be negligible.


Yeah, I got a four-input RF modulator for one TV from Radio Shack. Forget how much I paid, but it was pretty cheap. It's not for the main TV - an older one in the family room with no video inputs. This adapter even takes in S-video - although I don't see the difference between that and the standard yellow composite video - this TV is a piece of crap, although I DO notice the difference when I use the video output from the R15 vs the RF output. I have an R15 going into one of the video inputs on the adapter, and I have the RF output from the DVR going to the RF input on the adapter - so, no matter which input channel is selected on the adapter, I have the R15 video as a pass-through on the modulator. My kids use that TV for video games alot, and they have the RF adapter on the input channel for the PS2 most of the time. When I go down to watch that TV, it's on the PS2's input channel, and the picture and sound are REALLY crappy. Then I switch over to the input for the R15's S-video/composite audio inputs, and the picture clears up dramatically, and the sound gets much better. No, the TV's not stereo, but the sound is still much better when the input signal is from the composite audio. I notice a real improvement.

And switching inputs is really easy - it uses the old style radio buttons on the front to let you select the input channel.

#28 OFFLINE   mphare

mphare

    AllStar

  • Registered
  • 88 posts
Joined: Nov 15, 2005

Posted 05 March 2007 - 01:10 PM

I have FIOS, but will keep DTV for a while. I have a pretty sweet cluster of 3 DTiVos with 160 MB or better drives in them. No HD, but I'm not there yet, maybe in the future.

The point is, the FIOS DVR is pretty weak compared to my current setup. I can record 6 programs at a time one a combined disk space of about 600 GB and watch the content on any of the 3 TVs. I can also access my DVRs through the web from anywhere.

I like the idea of the multi-room DVR, but they'll need to increase the tuner count to at least 4 and up the disk size considerably (500 GB or better) before I'll switch over. The web thing would be cake, but not a deal breaker.
Mike

3 x DSR-704 (250 GB, 250 GB 160 GB; superpatched, tytools)
1 x R-15 (not active)

#29 OFFLINE   compuz1

compuz1

    New Member

  • Registered
  • 4 posts
Joined: Feb 02, 2007

Posted 25 March 2007 - 05:18 PM

Better than 6 mbps with Comcast?


20/5 here, and it's dedicated... Unlike Crapcast or Optimum Online which slows when people get home from work...

Never had a single outage and phone sounds so much better. If you use Vonage, as your speed is dedicated you don't have to worry about voice quality.

#30 OFFLINE   captain_video

captain_video

    Icon

  • Registered
  • 808 posts
Joined: Nov 21, 2005

Posted 26 March 2007 - 07:43 AM

I just dropped DTV in favor of FIOS about 10 days ago. I have an S3 Tivo with two cablecards and an HTPC with four ATSC tuners and one NTSC tuner and I'm about to add another ATSC tuner. I get all of my local HD channels for free via OTA antenna and the HTPC records anything I want from them in HD. I use the S3 Tivo for recording the rest of the non-OTA channels. The difference in PQ between FIOS and DTV is night and day. I actually enjoy watching SD programs on my 60" HDTV again (although it's still not even close to HD).

I looked into the Verizon HD DVR and found it seriously lacking for my needs. It only has a 160GB drive and you can't operate more than one of them in a room without interfering with the operation of any other one (i.e., they only have one set of IR codes). The S3 Tivo was the perfect substitute and only costs about $1.26 more per month ($12.95 for the Verizon HD-DVR vs. $8.31 for the Tivo service + two cablecards @ $2.95 each). I can upgrade the hard drive for more capacity and I can add more S3 Tivos to the mix at a later time if I desire.

There are zero monthly fees tied to the HTPC. I use Snapstream's BeyondTV 4.6 as the PVR software and I can access it via the web for remote scheduling of recordings. I can easily transfer recorded shows to any PC on my home network so there is zero hacking involved.
Too much crap to list
(Besides, do you really care what I have?):sure:

#31 OFFLINE   JVM

JVM

    Legend

  • Registered
  • 147 posts
Joined: Feb 21, 2007

Posted 26 March 2007 - 01:09 PM

"The difference in PQ between FIOS and DTV is night and day."

I was wondering about that. We don't have FIOS available yet, but nice to know their SD picture is superior to DTV. Can you comment on the difference between them with HD?
(2) HR20-700S
(2) Sony KDL-40V2500 LCD (HDMI)
Samsung R145 DVD (HDMI)
Toshiba D-R5 DVD (HDMI)
Monster Power Center
Universal RF20 remote control

#32 OFFLINE   OneEyedWonder

OneEyedWonder

    New Member

  • Registered
  • 4 posts
Joined: Nov 28, 2006

Posted 26 March 2007 - 07:08 PM

"The difference in PQ between FIOS and DTV is night and day."

I was wondering about that. We don't have FIOS available yet, but nice to know their SD picture is superior to DTV. Can you comment on the difference between them with HD?


This is a big point for me too. Over the weekend I finally took the plunge and went out and got myself a 46" HDTV (it'll be here by friday).

I'm scheduled to D* come on 4/3 to upgrade my dish and bring me a HR20 (I got it for $99, but got $10/month credit for year and 4 months free of HD access, 9.95/month). Not to mention that D* has always been very good to me. I don't think I've ever paid for any of my DVRs, they've given me months of free programming, and coupons for free PPV. I honestly love the company.

I have had FiOS internet and phone for about 5 months. Love the speed of the net.

I'm really confused as to whether to switch. I currently have 3 DVR's (HDVR2, R10, and R15). I don't subscribe to sunday ticket or to EI, or any of the sports packs for that matter, so thats not a deal breaker.

I'm really concerned about PQ and content. I've read all about "HD Lite", and those who really don't have a problem with their D* HD PQ. D* coming out with more channels and MPEG-4, but I've also read where FiOS PQ is just so much better. The channel choices are almost identical to D*, so that just leaves me with PQ.

Is it THAT much better than D*??

#33 OFFLINE   nikwax

nikwax

    Legend

  • Registered
  • 118 posts
Joined: Jan 01, 2007

Posted 26 March 2007 - 07:09 PM

skip the Verizon telephone service, go with Vonage, save yourself $30/month. That helps even up the $$$ aspect.

#34 OFFLINE   Pink Fairy

Pink Fairy

    Hall Of Fame

  • Registered
  • 1,655 posts
Joined: Dec 27, 2006

Posted 26 March 2007 - 07:21 PM

I have vonage myself, since I have to use cox for my internet service and their phone prices are ridiculous. And it was hilarious...I called vonage just to see when my contract ended...and they said "here, why don't we give you till the end of your contract for free so you can decide if you want to stay with us."

That was six months ago almost :P
There are two kinds of Strength: the strength to lead, and the strength to follow; the strength to control, and the strength to yield. There are two kinds of Power: The power to strip another's soul bare, and the power to stand naked.

#35 OFFLINE   Satelliteracer

Satelliteracer

    Hall Of Fame

  • Registered
  • 3,042 posts
Joined: Dec 06, 2006

Posted 26 March 2007 - 07:29 PM

I have vonage myself, since I have to use cox for my internet service and their phone prices are ridiculous. And it was hilarious...I called vonage just to see when my contract ended...and they said "here, why don't we give you till the end of your contract for free so you can decide if you want to stay with us."

That was six months ago almost :P



Vonage lost a MAJOR court decision on Friday. It will be interesting to see if they can survive as Verizon is trying to deliver the death blow to them right now.

#36 OFFLINE   JVM

JVM

    Legend

  • Registered
  • 147 posts
Joined: Feb 21, 2007

Posted 26 March 2007 - 07:57 PM

Why is there so much talk about phone service in this thread when the real issue is comparing picture quality of FIOS to DirecTV?

Isn't this a topic area for DirecTV -- and the question is DirecTV vs. FIOS???

Anyone care to comment on the HD quality of FIOS compared to DirecTV?
(2) HR20-700S
(2) Sony KDL-40V2500 LCD (HDMI)
Samsung R145 DVD (HDMI)
Toshiba D-R5 DVD (HDMI)
Monster Power Center
Universal RF20 remote control

#37 OFFLINE   Pink Fairy

Pink Fairy

    Hall Of Fame

  • Registered
  • 1,655 posts
Joined: Dec 27, 2006

Posted 26 March 2007 - 08:02 PM

Why is there so much talk about phone service in this thread when the real issue is comparing picture quality of FIOS to DirecTV?

Isn't this a topic area for DirecTV -- and the question is DirecTV vs. FIOS???

Anyone care to comment on the HD quality of FIOS compared to DirecTV?


Because one of the draws of verizon would be everything included in one deal...and phone happens to be part of it. I would test FIOS...if Verizon were even in Tulsa
There are two kinds of Strength: the strength to lead, and the strength to follow; the strength to control, and the strength to yield. There are two kinds of Power: The power to strip another's soul bare, and the power to stand naked.

#38 OFFLINE   captain_video

captain_video

    Icon

  • Registered
  • 808 posts
Joined: Nov 21, 2005

Posted 26 March 2007 - 08:09 PM

I was wondering about that. We don't have FIOS available yet, but nice to know their SD picture is superior to DTV. Can you comment on the difference between them with HD?

I think the HD with Verizon definitely looks better. It's a full 1920x1080 vs 1280x1088 for DTV. I haven't checked the bitrates to see if Verizon is higher but I suspect it is. Perhaps "night and day" was a slight exaggeration with respect to SD on FIOS vs. DTV, but it's noticeably better. I'm using my S3 Tivo to watch the FIOS feed and my HTPC for everything else via OTA antenna. The picture quality on the S3 is better than what I'm used to seeing on my old HDTivos. The images are sharper and less grainy.
Too much crap to list
(Besides, do you really care what I have?):sure:

#39 OFFLINE   JVM

JVM

    Legend

  • Registered
  • 147 posts
Joined: Feb 21, 2007

Posted 26 March 2007 - 08:13 PM

I think the HD with Verizon definitely looks better. It's a full 1920x1080 vs 1280x1088 for DTV. I haven't checked the bitrates to see if Verizon is higher but I suspect it is. Perhaps "night and day" was a slight exaggeration with respect to SD on FIOS vs. DTV, but it's noticeably better. I'm using my S3 Tivo to watch the FIOS feed and my HTPC for everything else via OTA antenna. The picture quality on the S3 is better than what I'm used to seeing on my old HDTivos. The images are sharper and less grainy.


Thanks for the information. I look forward to when FIOS is available in my area. How about the HD DVR used by Verizon for FIOS?
(2) HR20-700S
(2) Sony KDL-40V2500 LCD (HDMI)
Samsung R145 DVD (HDMI)
Toshiba D-R5 DVD (HDMI)
Monster Power Center
Universal RF20 remote control

#40 OFFLINE   OneEyedWonder

OneEyedWonder

    New Member

  • Registered
  • 4 posts
Joined: Nov 28, 2006

Posted 26 March 2007 - 08:57 PM

I think the HD with Verizon definitely looks better. It's a full 1920x1080 vs 1280x1088 for DTV. I haven't checked the bitrates to see if Verizon is higher but I suspect it is. Perhaps "night and day" was a slight exaggeration with respect to SD on FIOS vs. DTV, but it's noticeably better. I'm using my S3 Tivo to watch the FIOS feed and my HTPC for everything else via OTA antenna. The picture quality on the S3 is better than what I'm used to seeing on my old HDTivos. The images are sharper and less grainy.


But did you ever see what the PQ was on an HR20 compared to the old HDTivos? Weren't they all MPEG-2, where the HR20 is MPEG-4? (i'm not as advanced on all these terms as most people are around here, so excuse me if that makes no sense).

I just really want to know, bottom line, is D* HD service that bad? I've heard from a very well respected member of this board that I "will not be disappointed".

#41 OFFLINE   funhouse69

funhouse69

    Icon

  • Registered
  • 669 posts
Joined: Mar 26, 2007

Posted 27 March 2007 - 02:12 AM

I recently had FIOS Internet / Phone installed in my house. I would have went with TV but my town hasn't "Approved" the offering as of yet with no expected date of this happening and since I know how my town is (we got cable almost 10 years after everyone else did) I bit the bullet and upgraded to D* HD last week. That is another story that I've posted elsewhere on this site.

I will however say that I've been involved with usability testing for Verizon over the years and some of the items I've tested were related to their FIOS offerings. In one of the tests I was comparing signal quality compared to other providers. Granted this was before FIOS was rolled out but the quality of the picture that I was seeing was insane. Their goal from day one was to offer a better picture in both SD and HD than all of their competitors as they have the bandwidth to do it. I now know several people that are happy FIOS customers and they tell me that the picture quality far surpasses Cable and the one person that had Sat said that it was even better then that.

Just for reference my Internet is 20mb down and 5mb up and it has been rock solid since day one. As previously mentioned this is a point to point connection like DSL and not shared bandwidth like cable so I expect this stability to continue. The installer I talked to said that 100mb Down is in the very near future. I've read on another site that is already being offered in parts of NY for about the same money.

Finally - When I ordered FIOS I ended up getting my Internet, Home Phone, Cell Phone and Direct TV all on one bill. For that "Bundle" they gave me a $100 gift card to Best Buy and almost $40 a month off of my stand alone pricing. So if you can't get the TV they have a deal with D* that they can take over the billing (and will NOT affect your account / contact in anyway) and save some $ which is always a good thing!

#42 OFFLINE   captain_video

captain_video

    Icon

  • Registered
  • 808 posts
Joined: Nov 21, 2005

Posted 27 March 2007 - 07:07 AM

But did you ever see what the PQ was on an HR20 compared to the old HDTivos? Weren't they all MPEG-2, where the HR20 is MPEG-4? (i'm not as advanced on all these terms as most people are around here, so excuse me if that makes no sense).

I just really want to know, bottom line, is D* HD service that bad? I've heard from a very well respected member of this board that I "will not be disappointed".

I have not had the opportunity to audition an HR20, but I almost purchased one from Beach Audio after they were first introduced. DTV only offers four of my local HD channels in mpeg4 whereas I get 14 of them via OTA antenna and also on FIOS. DTV's current HD lineup is actually worse than FIOS when you add in all of the locals I can receive. I get locals from both Baltimore and DC whereas DTV will only provide the Baltimore locals. DTV is supposed to be adding up to 100 more HD channels but I have yet to see a list of what those channels might be. I was told by the FIOS installer that they would also be adding about 50 more HD channels in the upcoming months, but I haven't heard anything more about it since.

I can't complain about DirecTV's service as I think they have about the best customer service I've dealt with. My experience with customer retention was quite enjoyable when I cancelled service. My main beefs with DTV are that they require a commitment when activating new receivers and they require an upfront fee on certain equipment. No other service providers have such requirements AFAIK. I could call up and cancel FIOS today if I wanted to with no penalities. I told the CSR that their picture quality had diminished significantly over the past 5 years or so due to overcompression of the signal. She said I was the first to tell this.

The main reason I went with FIOS is that I had heard the picture quality was topnotch, I could use an S3 Tivo with it, I could finally sever all ties with Comcast and get FIOS internet, and I could bundle my existing Verizon phone service in with the total package to get a discount. I think for most people the FIOS internet is a no-brainer compared to other services so that's really just icing on the cake.

I wasn't ready to sign up for another 2-year commitment and lose many of the added features I've incorporated into my HDTivos, such as networking and video extraction. MY feeling about all the hype regarding the new HD channels is that I'll believe it when I see it. Right now I'm only hearing a lot of promises about new channels from all camps but there's not much info on what channels those might be. The way things have been going at DTV I'd half expect to see 50 new shopping networks and 50 new religious channels added in HD and nothing most of us really care about. They'll go with whatever will bring them the most revenue and not necessarily the most viewers. They don't have 100 channels in their current lineup that I'd actually watch so there's no telling what they'll add in HD. I'd rather have just 20 more HD channels if they were something that would appeal to me.

It's all about quality vs. quantity. 100 more channels of crap in HD is still crap IMHO. To be fair, most providers have basically the same channel lineups so it's not just limited to DTV. For some reason they think that the more channels they have the more customers they'll attract. I'd be perfectly content if they reduced their current lineup to a fraction of what they have if they just provided quality programming. The problem is that everyone has varied tastes so there's no way to provide a set lineup that will appeal to everyone. What appeals to me is of no interest to the next guy and vice versa. What I'd really like is the ability to choose my channels a la carte and pay a flat fee for a set number of channels. If any provider ever did that then you'd see people flock to them in droves.

FYI - Verizon also offers DirecTV service so you can get everything included on one bill. I wasn't aware that you could get Verizon Wireless included as well because they are a completely separate division from the other Verizon services.
Too much crap to list
(Besides, do you really care what I have?):sure:

#43 OFFLINE   whsbuss

whsbuss

    Mentor

  • Registered
  • 40 posts
Joined: Jan 21, 2003

Posted 27 March 2007 - 10:50 AM

After being with DTV for almost 10 years, I will be moving to FiOS when available in my area. The new slimline dish needed to capture the new sats for HD is a total non-starter. My cousin recently upgraded to the new dish and its HUGH!! No way I will have it mounted on my house (don't do roof installations under any circumstances). The wind load on that sucker must be overwhelming.

DTV has been great but bandwidth via sats is a somewhat limiting factor, thus the compressions even at MPEG-4. What happens when even more content is needed. Do we need to get an even larger dish, or may two?

For now I'm staying pat with my HDTivo. We shall see what DTV offers in HD later this year. I'm sure cable and FiOS will follow with a similar HD offering, although I suspect FiOS will only have to make the content available on their current network. Cable still has to deal with wideband bandwidth issues.
1 Hughes HR10-250
1 Hughes HDVR2

#44 OFFLINE   captain_video

captain_video

    Icon

  • Registered
  • 808 posts
Joined: Nov 21, 2005

Posted 27 March 2007 - 11:35 AM

The AT9 dish and its variants shouldn't be all that much larger than the Phase III dish. The two new satellite locations are within the existing arc so in theory you could add the extra LNBs to a Phase III dish. The new dish probably has a slightly reduced arc to enable the positioning of the new LNBs between the existing ones, resulting in a slightly larger footprint for the dish surface. I've got one of the earlier AT9 dishes but I never got around to installing it, mainly because Verizon activated FIOS and I decided to go with them instead of switching to mpeg4 with DirecTV.
Too much crap to list
(Besides, do you really care what I have?):sure:

#45 OFFLINE   garn9173

garn9173

    Icon

  • Registered
  • 526 posts
Joined: Apr 04, 2005

Posted 27 March 2007 - 11:39 AM

As much as i've read about FiOS and it's competitor, AT&T's U-Verse, sadly I don't look for either service in Iowa, if at all and Iowa is a state that could greatly use the competition. Qwest and a local teleco, Iowa Telecom, has a stranglehold on providing telephone service in Iowa.

If and that's a big if Verizon and AT&T would start local phone service in Iowa, it would be a step in the right direction.

Dish Network (February 2002-August 2005)
Mediacom (August 2005-1/27/07)
DirecTV (1/27-07 - 4/14)

Dish Network (4/14 - ??)  Hopper, Super Joey, and two Joey receivers.


#46 OFFLINE   JVM

JVM

    Legend

  • Registered
  • 147 posts
Joined: Feb 21, 2007

Posted 27 March 2007 - 11:52 AM

After being with DTV for almost 10 years, I will be moving to FiOS when available in my area. The new slimline dish needed to capture the new sats for HD is a total non-starter. My cousin recently upgraded to the new dish and its HUGH!! No way I will have it mounted on my house (don't do roof installations under any circumstances). The wind load on that sucker must be overwhelming.


Excellent point, and one that I never considered. Bigger and bigger is a possibility, along with concerns for my roof. Unfortunately I don't have FIOS available yet, but I am certainly looking forward to having it.
(2) HR20-700S
(2) Sony KDL-40V2500 LCD (HDMI)
Samsung R145 DVD (HDMI)
Toshiba D-R5 DVD (HDMI)
Monster Power Center
Universal RF20 remote control

#47 OFFLINE   Tom_S

Tom_S

    Icon

  • Registered
  • 602 posts
Joined: Apr 09, 2002

Posted 27 March 2007 - 01:40 PM

The new slimline dish needed to capture the new sats for HD is a total non-starter. My cousin recently upgraded to the new dish and its HUGH!! No way I will have it mounted on my house (don't do roof installations under any circumstances). The wind load on that sucker must be overwhelming.


Oh Please... get a grip. It's not that big, I had a 24" round dish on my roof for 5 years without a problem and this has about the same surface area, and it has a bigger more stable base than my old dish.
Panasonic 58PX60U
DirectTV HR34-700, HR24-500, H23-600

No OTA only Sat
AU9(Slimline) SL3 SWM Dish

All 3 receivers connected via DECA and bridged to 8-port Rosewill RC-410X Gigabit Switch.




Protected By... spam firewall...And...