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Out of the frying pan, and into the fire

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by Upstream, Nov 10, 2008.

  1. iamqnow

    iamqnow Legend

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    Dec 26, 2007
    I agree with most of what you are saying. In my area, Comcast is no more expensive than D* and does not require a commitment. I had them for years with no problems. Have they really gotten that bad, as so many people say? I still have them as my ISP, really no other choice for me. I am still too far from a "switch" to get reliable DSL. D* does not offer me affordable internet. I went with D* years ago only because I got a great deal on multi-rooms as a new customer. I can understand if cable is really as bad as folks on these forums imply. But is it? I've had my share of problems with D* and I'm sure things would be pretty much the same with cable and the new advances all the providers are trying to roll out.
     
  2. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Dec 9, 2006
    I think this is a "YMMV thing".
    I didn't have Comcast, but the cable that is in this area is WAY WORSE than DirecTV.
    When I went for my "30 day test drive", I was so hoping for it to work, as I was SO tired of the DirecTV run-a-round.
    After just a few days with their Motorola DVR and programing, I was glad to be back with DirecTV and this forum has saved "my sanity" with their customer service.
     
  3. jpl

    jpl Hall Of Fame

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    Jul 9, 2006
    Ok, how about 7 more HBO channels? I know the OP isn't going to FiOS, but Verizon carries 14 HBOs, with all of them also in HD. So, technically, that's 7 more SD HBO channels, and 12 more HD HBO channels. That's what Harsh was getting at - other providers offer substantially more HBO channels than DirecTV.
     
  4. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Dec 9, 2006
    "I think" you're counting east/west as different channels.
    Even Harsh didn't count them.
    Are there more HD HBO channels than DirecTV is carrying? sure, but even HBO.com doesn't have/offer as many channels as you seem to say there are, unless you count the east/west of the same channel as different channels and with a DVR, who cares?
     
  5. jpl

    jpl Hall Of Fame

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    Jul 9, 2006
    Yes, they are east/west coast versions. But DirecTV also counts them as separate channels. They list having 7 HBO channels, even though 3 of them are west coast versions. Here are the channels that they carry:

    HBO
    HBO West
    HBO2
    HBO2 West
    HBO Signature
    HBO Signature West
    HBO Family
    HBO Family West
    HBO Comedy
    HBO Comedy West
    HBO Zone
    HBO Zone West
    HBO Latino
    HBO Latino West

    So, yeah, half of those are west-coast feeds. Which means that they, technically have 3 more HBOs than DirecTV. And, again, all of those channels are available in HD too.
     
  6. Davenlr

    Davenlr Geek til I die

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    Sep 16, 2006
    Just some observations. I recently upgraded my boss's house to HD. She has Comcast. I have Directv.

    First, Comcasts customer service here in Little Rock was above par. Every question answered, all prices quoted accurate.

    Comcast here offers PBS locals in HD,carries all the locals stations subchannels, carried PBS-HD (national), and had Fox News HD before Directv did. Her cost for a package comparable with mine was $35/mo lower. Yes there are less HD channels, but they are the ones that never show any HD anyway. She isn't into sports, so wasn't interested in any sports packages.

    PQ was good on HD and digital SD channels. Pretty much sucked on analog SD channels.

    I have Comcast Digital phone service, and its 1/2 the price of AT&T, while the internet is twice the cost of DSL, but also 3 times faster. And there aren't 50 added surcharges that always ran my phone bill with AT&T up double what I was quoted for a monthly bill.

    Customer service at Directv has been ok for me, once I got past the CSR level (I had to email Ms Filipak). CSR level is horrible.

    Just my two cents.
     
  7. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Dec 9, 2006
    So they have more HD but only two "other" channels, even by "Harsh's count".
     
  8. RACJ2

    RACJ2 Hall Of Fame

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    Aug 2, 2008
    Not sure what DSL is available in your area, but you might want to run a speed test on your Comcast ISP. I had TW cable ISP and it was rated as 7000/768, but at a peak time I only was getting 3052/476 and at an off peak time 4546/480. With AT&T DSL, my rated speed is 6000/768 and it tests around 4840/640 at all times. For a few days I had both DSL and cable ISP and was testing them with the same speed test at the same time. DSL was consistently faster and is not affected by the numbers of users, like cable is. In addition, my brother has TWC ISP in another state and his quoted speed is 10000/1000, but at peak times he was only getting 3500/320. So what your service is rated isn't as important as the actually speed you are getting.
     
  9. joe diamond

    joe diamond Hall Of Fame

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    Feb 28, 2007
    Actually I almost wrote TV = TV. People will watch what they can. I note that some high end DTV customers that can buy whatever they want without noticing the money are selecting Netflick and the local rental store. They have only so much time for TV and prefer to choose what they watch.

    I did note a large number of DTV installs based on DISH dropping the outdoor channel.......like politics, it is all local.

    Joe
     
  10. Upstream

    Upstream Hall Of Fame

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    Jul 4, 2006
    So far, so good (though it has only been a few days).

    Here is how getting Comcast installed went:

    Comcast installation was scheduled for between 8 and 11 am. At 9:30 am, the Comcast tech calls to apologize that he is running a little late and will be at my home by 10.

    Installation is straightfoward and painless. He shows me how to reprogram the remote control for the DVR to add 30-second skip. The tech is done by 11:15, and apologizes again for running late.

    Because my house has never had cable television, there is no underground line from the cable hub on the street to the house, so the tech runs an orange cable above ground and tells me that a crew will be out within 5 days to bury the cable. It is buried the next day while I'm at work, and other than a bit of upturned dirt in a shrubbery bed, there is no damage to my landscaping.

    Last night I got a call from Comcast to confirm that installation was fine and to see if I had any questions.


    When my wife first looked at the Comcast picture, the TV was tuned to an analog channel. She commented that it looked similar to DirecTV. I then turned to a digital SD channel, and my wife commented that it looked much better, but she was expecting more from HD. I told her that that wasn't HD. I then turned to an HD channel, and she was very impressed.

    I am not crazy about the Comcast DVR (Motorola). I will probably get used to the user interface. The remote control layout absolutely sucks, and even if I get used to it, it will still suck.

    Some things I like about the DVR over the R15 include 5-minute skip forward and backward, and 30-second skip (instead of slip). I also like that it automatically prompts you if you want to add time to the end of a sports recording. Also, the DVR has dual-live buffers. I never understood the complaints about DirecTV's lack of DLB; now I understand.

    The thing I like least about the Comcast DVR is a small disk. Although it's SD capacity is about the same as the R15, it only has about 20 hours of HD capacity. There is an eSATA port on the back of the box, so I will have to see if there is a way to add capacity. (Unfortunately, I can't find a Comcast equivalent of DBSTalk.com)

    Although Comcast has less HD channels than DirecTV, it is still more than I was getting since I only had SD DirecTV. So far, it seems that most of what I watch is on channels that Comcast has in HD. I'll probably keep track for a few weeks to see what I watch in SD.



    Here is how cancelling DirecTV went

    After Comcast was installed, I called DirecTV to cancel. They asked me why and I explained that I switched to Comcast to get HD and I didn't want to get HD service from DirecTV because it would trigger a 2-year commitment and I don't want to be locked into DirecTV's lousy customer service for 2 more years.

    The DirecTV rep offers me different price discounts ($99 HD-DVR being the best discount), but they all have a 2-year commitment. I tell him if he can't offer me something without a commitment, he is just wasting our time. He then agrees to cancel, and informs me that there is a $300+ cancellation fee. I tell him there isn't since I am not under a commitment. He tells me I'm wrong. I tell him that this is why I am cancelling DirecTV, and they better not charge the cancellation fee. He starts to fight with me. I hang up.

    We'll have to see how that goes.

    It is ironic that my last encounter with DirecTV left me with a real sour taste in my mouth due to crappy customer service processes and systems.
     
  11. DarinC

    DarinC Hall Of Fame

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    So I guess maybe not? :nono2:

    As far has help with your Moto box, Comcast is the biggest provider out there, there has to be a decent online resource, considering there's several for DirecTV and Dish. I guess if nothing else, you could try the DVR forums @ AVS.
     
  12. bonscott87

    bonscott87 Cutting Edge: ECHELON '07

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    Jan 21, 2003
    Broadband reports have some pretty active cable and telco forums. Those would be a good place to start on finding the cable version of DBSTalk.
     
  13. RACJ2

    RACJ2 Hall Of Fame

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    Aug 2, 2008
    I had the Moto DVR with Comcast, which was later taken over by Time Warner in my area. From what I recall, the eSATA port was disabled. Thought I would pass along all my old resources. The first link to Wiki Books had a lot of useful info aboout that DVR. Second is a link to the forum bonscott87 mentioned and I used to read. Last is a link to Motorola site that has info about their DVR's. Hope this helps.

    http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/How_to_use_a_Motorola_DVR/Configuration

    http://www.dslreports.com/forum/tvcomcast

    http://www.motorola.com/business/v/...nnel=724be73820935110VgnVCM1000008406b00aRCRD
     
  14. Upstream

    Upstream Hall Of Fame

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    Jul 4, 2006
    Thanks for the links, RACJ2
     
  15. jpl

    jpl Hall Of Fame

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    I'll give you a reco here - send them an e-mail about your termination fee. When I cancelled, I got all sorts of wrong information from the CSR about my contract - they had my contract date wrong (although it was in my favor, I insisted they had it wrong, but they told me not to worry about it). But the rep also told me that I owned both R15s. I knew I didn't, so I asked 'are you sure?' He said 'absolutely - hold on to them in case you want to come back!' I didn't want to get hit with a non-return fee, so I e-mailed them. It took a day to get a response, but it was cordial, and in line with what I told them - that, yes, I was right - the DVRs were leased.

    A couple days later I got only one return kit. After waiting another couple days, I e-mailed them again. Two days later I got the second return kit. The person responding to my e-mails seemed alot more on the ball than their front-line service reps. Plus I had documentation of our conversations, should there be a dispute.
     

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