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Anybody here dissatisfied with Directv?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by mystic7, Apr 10, 2013.

  1. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Maybe they believe in the Ted Stevens "series of tubes", so the bigger the tube the faster the Internet! :rolling:
     
  2. raott

    raott Hall Of Fame

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    I don't know if there has been a reduction recently but it's been crappy for years and complaints about the quality of Directv's SD on this site go way back. IIRC, the resolution is cut, right up front, and is not 640x480. When you throw in compression, you get a sub-standard pic. Fortunately, I rarely watch SD on my main TV, but unfortunately, my bedroom TV is still a CRT.
     
  3. mystic7

    mystic7 Icon

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    I didn't say that. Plus I'm with Directv again, so what's the point of "mocking" my tv provider?
     
  4. mystic7

    mystic7 Icon

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    No, my question was is everyone still happy with Directv. Last time I was here almost 2 years ago you would think Directv was the greatest invention ever and even thinking of going to Time Warner was sacreligious. I didn't see any posts like that when I came back so I was just wondering if Directv's reputation had gone downhill in the past 2 years, that's all.
     
  5. mystic7

    mystic7 Icon

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    I haven't had TWC HD, I got fed up when they kept telling me HD DVRs didn't exist and their ads saying that Internet speed was dependent on the diameter of the cable.

    You must be referring to their ad in The Onion ;)
     
  6. Volatility

    Volatility Legend

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    :mellow:

    so typically any show where Kim Kardashian is acting lol
    drums rolls please
    applause
    close curtains :D
     
  7. Laker44

    Laker44 Godfather

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    One of the HDTV's I have is a 37" Toshiba Regaza, that has been professionally calibrated. When I subscribed to DirecTV in Jan 2008 but still subscribed to the lowest tier of cable, the SD picture was better then cable. But after DirecTV did an update in 2009, I saw a reduction in picture quality with DirecTV and on cable it was better.
     
  8. cypherx

    cypherx Hall Of Fame

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    The SD picture on my ClearQAM tuner with my cable company is better than the SD picture over DirecTV. Though the local cable company is putting 10 MPEG2 SD channels in one RF space. 38.8mbps / 10 = 3.88mbps per SD feed (mpeg2). DirecTV obviously doesn't have the bandwidth on 101 where a lot of legacy single lnb dishes are pointing. So they must be cramming a lot more per transponder. Not entirely sure the Mbps on a transponder, but since they are doing MPEG2 it's not efficient as it could be.

    Once the rest of Comcast / NBCU and AMC Networks properties go HD along with The HUB, it's likely I won't have SD on ever again, except for the occasional Discovery Health, Nick JR, Babyfirst.

    Knowing that the D14 satellite will be launched is a great testament to the enormous capacity boost that will provide us with the likelihood of all of those remaining networks going HD.
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. mystic7

    mystic7 Icon

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    I hope you edited that joke to make it worse because you sure didn't make it better.
     
  10. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Just because they have 10 SD QAM channels in a single RF channel doesn't mean they're all the same bandwidth. They might have shopping channels or news channels that can get by with a lot less, and use more for others. Or use VBR on them all and dynamically change the bandwidth used by each as needed, similar to network QoS schemes.

    I don't ever use Directv SD channels or cable SD channels (except a couple like TCM that my cable company doesn't provide in HD) so I can't compare them, but since they publish their mapping for the clear QAM channels I can see how many they pack in per RF channel. I see one with 13 that besides WGN, has a mismash of shopping and religious channels that don't need much bandwidth. There are others with 10, 11, 12, 9 and 5. The one with 5 has ESPN, ESPN2, CSNCH, and NatGEO, along with the Weather Channel. Somehow I'm betting it was no accident they did that, and that the Weather Channel isn't getting the same bandwidth allocation as ESPN :)

    I'm honestly not surprised Directv has reduced SD quality over the years and would expect they'll do it more and more even if they have the bandwidth for it. Great way to get the SD laggards to upgrade to HD receivers. People who still have SD receivers they're watching regularly in 2013 are most likely people who don't care about the quality of their TV experience, don't like to spend much money on their TV experience and/or just don't care all that much about TV in general.

    They're the most likely candidates to cut the cord, and least likely candidates to spend extra money on upgraded packages or PPV movies. I'm sure there are exceptions, but in general you'd expect the people who care more about TV and the TV viewing experience and are willing to spend money on it to have HDTVs and HD receivers. Directv probably makes very little from most of the customers still clinging to SD - no extra fees that everyone with HD and DVRs pay. I'll bet they wouldn't be too sorry to see many of them go. Looks like they may be helping push them a bit in several ways:

    1) Changes to the protection plan etc. to make it easier for customers still on SD to upgrade to HD or Genie
    2) Obsoleting all the receivers older than 2004 or so via disabling the old guide
    3) Perhaps slowly degrading SD quality to further incentivize upgrades to HD, and get the customers who refuse to upgrade to voluntarily leave
     
  11. cypherx

    cypherx Hall Of Fame

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    Slowly degrading SD is not an option. That would only be an option if every channel were available in HD. For example we watch Best Ink on Oxygen, which normally airs new episodes every Wednesday night. Oxygen already looks like sh*t in SD. No sense to make it look even worse. To be honest I play some Baby Einstein videos for my 5 month old daughter through the YouTube feature on the HR24 DVR. Those YouTube clips look better than the SD on DirecTV.

    OK yeah SD looks like crap, so you upgrade... but then you still can't get all those channels in HD unless you pay out the wazoo and subscribe to two providers. Could I get a lot of those basics like Oxygen, The Hub, Reelz, Style, etc.. in HD? Sure if I went with cable. But then I'd lose things like HBO2, HBO Signature, HBO Family, and other premium multi-screens. So no way do I have enough disposable income to subscribe to two providers, have two set top boxes, two different remotes and have to teach everyone how to juggle two inputs on the TV.

    DirecTV has more of what I want from a provider than Cable... just not all of it. I think when D14 launches they will have so much bandwidth that getting the rest of the channels in HD shouldn't be a problem.
     
  12. Volatility

    Volatility Legend

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    meh
     
  13. mystic7

    mystic7 Icon

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    Touche
     
  14. ThomasM

    ThomasM RF Engineer

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    Well, you're 33% correct in my case. I don't like to spend OUTRAGEOUS amounts of money on my TV experience. Plain old SD DirecTV is expensive enough without adding things like whole-home and HD fees. And I certainly don't want to be stuck with DirecTV for another 2 years considering their price increases.

    What you forgot to mention is that there are a lot of viewers who like old TV programs (classic TV) and movies none of which are in HD anyway. I am one of those viewers. And anyone who pays for ANY DirecTV service must care for TV considering how expensive it is.
     
  15. goinsleeper

    goinsleeper Godfather

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    I was merely showing the irony. I have some movies that I stream from my computer to the TV and they may be in 1080p, but if the bit rate isn't there, the resolution is almost irrelevant. Having 1080 at 5 fps is still 1080 but would be unwatchable.
     
  16. acostapimps

    acostapimps Hall Of Famer

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    Some subs don't care or don't know much about HD when they still have tube tv's, Plus they don't want any more fees, And I don't know why people say sd looks worse on Directv, Duh you have a HDTV of course it's gonna look bad, you just never noticed when you had sd tv's, Plus if you have a bigger tv you'll notice it a lot more compared to a small set. Try switching to a tube tv to see what I'm talking about:)
     
  17. MysteryMan

    MysteryMan Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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    Have you ever seen some of those classic TV shows and movies in HD? There's a tremendous difference in picture quality.
     
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  18. mystic7

    mystic7 Icon

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    Not true. I had Directv before. When I switched to Time Warner I noticed their SD was excellent, and I notice now, coming back to Directv, how bad their SD is. However I don't watch SD, I notice it in the SD commercials on HD channels. And as I said before, if TIme Warner raised the quality of their HD (it's terribly compressed) they would have to lower the quality of the SD. The ol' Catch 22.
     
  19. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    It seems as though cable companies are missing a trick by making higher quality HD a tradeoff with lower quality SD. It makes sense, most are limited to a top frequency of 750 to 850 MHz. Analog channels, which most still have, are very wasteful of bandwidth, and having SD duplicates of all channels and broadcasting them in MPEG2, is also wasteful. Can't really go higher than 850 MHz because they don't want to have to start rewiring homes like satellite providers sometimes have to.

    But nothing stops them from using more bandwidth from the headend to the curb. They might need to upgrade some equipment along the path to handle the higher frequencies, but most of us know that many splitters and other passive devices rated for cable frequencies work just fine on satellite frequencies. We only pay extra for the higher rated stuff for peace of mind.

    Cable companies could offer a 'high quality' package that included everything in top quality MPEG4 HD except for the channels that are only available in SD (which would be top quality MPEG4 as well) There would be no analog channels at all, and no SD duplicates of HD channels. Broadcast this at >1 GHz from the headend so it would run in parallel with the signal everyone gets today. That way you don't have to stop providing the analog channels and full SD content that people who are still using SD sets want to keep receiving.

    Customers who order this would have a frequency shifter installed on their line where it splits off to go to their house that downshifts the frequency to the normal cable range so it would work with their house wiring. This frequency shifting is really no different than what a B band converter (or a LNB or SWM multiswitch) does, and those are inexpensive because they're manufactured in quantity. A big cable provider like TWC could order these by the millions and get the price down, and they could get whatever they do cost back on the install charge for the 'HQ package'.
     
  20. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Yes, there is. I do watch oldies at times and find them very watchable in HD.

    Rich
     

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