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Service Review after 3 days

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by KsBillsFan, Oct 27, 2009.

  1. KsBillsFan

    KsBillsFan AllStar

    Oct 16, 2009
    So made the switch after many 12 years of cable service. This is just a quick review of what I think of the service after 3 days.

    What I like:
    DVR is smarter than cable system DVR.
    If you have three recordings set at the same time, the DVR will record the third show at a later time if possible. With the cable DVR, you were at a loss or had to manually find the program to record at a later time.

    Easy to setup DVR Recordings: I can do it without having to go through 3 menus like the cable DVR. Plus I can use my iPhone or computer to schedule recordings.

    Able to use PC to watch DVR recordings.

    QuickTune: Great since I don't know the channel numbers yet. Just wish all the receivers had this option.

    TV Apps: Great to be able to check weather, scores and other info from my TV. Again, wish all receivers had this option.

    Double Play feature is nice, but seems just like a glorified last/previous button.

    Guide search features are easier to use and faster than cable receiver.

    HD picture seems more crisp and clearer. I am guessing this would be due to how much cable providers compress their HD signal compared to DirecTV.

    What I dislike:
    OnDemand: Cable OnDemand is that, instant viewing. DirecTV you have to download the content then, watch. Not the best when you have a young kid who wants to watch SpongeBob right then. Plus you have to have a DVR to do OnDemand.

    Guide is switched to show only channels I receive, but still shows channels I do not subscribe or am not able to receive. I know I can edit channel lists, but why have the "Only show my channels" list if it's not correct?

    Menu settings are not user friendly to find. Took a search on here to find where my future schedule recordings were listed.

    CSR didn't let me know I could receive 3 months free of the HD extra package. I found this on my own.

    No clock on the front of the receivers. Might seem strange, but when you are use to having this and depend on these as your clocks, this is a great loss.


    So far I am happy with the switch. The dislikes are lil' things, nothing major so far. I hope it stays this way for a long time.
  2. The Merg

    The Merg 1*

    Jun 24, 2007
    Northern VA
    Glad you are enjoying the service...

    As for the Channels I Get (CIG) feature... it is and has been broken for a long time. Just set up some favorite lists and you'll be fine. The only time it really affects you is if you perform a search in that it will find stuff on those channels you don't get.

    - Merg
  3. Talos4

    Talos4 Legend

    Jun 21, 2007
    Nice to hear someone not complaining.

    As far as the clock goes, I had an old Samsung SIR-TS360 box that showed the channel number.

    When I got my first Tivo to replace the 360, it didn't show the channel numbers and every receiver since doesn't either. It's a small irritation that to this day still bugs me. I know it's petty but, I have enough passwords, user names etc to remember.

    Sometimes trying to remember that my locals aren't in the 900's anymore is hard :grin:
  4. ciurca

    ciurca Godfather

    Apr 14, 2009
    As a former cable user, the positives of D* greatly outweigh the negatives. The DVR definitely slays Comcast's.

    I do miss the comcast bandwidth though. 3.0mbps DSL sucks.
  5. bigwad

    bigwad Godfather

    Oct 19, 2006
    What I dislike:
    OnDemand: Cable OnDemand is that, instant viewing. DirecTV you have to download the content then, watch. Not the best when you have a young kid who wants to watch SpongeBob right then. Plus you have to have a DVR to do OnDemand.

    I just switched to Jet broadband with a 5Mb download speed. When I had Verizon DSL(1.5Mbs), I had to download something BEFORE I could watch it. I watched something yesterday as it was downloading. Am I correctly assuming that is due to the speed of the broadband, or is the Demand now thru the receiver itself and it's just quicker? I hadn't tried it for quite a while since it took so long to download.
  6. bb37

    bb37 Godfather

    Dec 27, 2007
    Welcome to family!

    I was on Brighthouse for a few months and then went back to DirecTV. I agree, I miss the clock on the front of the DVR. Just gotta find the remote and press INFO to get a clock on DirecTV.
  7. RACJ2

    RACJ2 Hall Of Fame

    Aug 2, 2008
    I switched from cable to Directv and agree with most of your likes/dislikes. Thought I would provide some feedback on a couple of your items.

    Double Play (DP) is similar to the <PREV> button, but does more. DP will buffer two channels at once by using both tuners in the DVR. So if your kid is watching SpongeBob, but you want to keep up with the news. When a commercial comes on, you can swap to the other tuner. If its in the middle of an interesting news item, you can rewind back to the beginning of that story.

    Also, it continues to buffer SpongeBob on the other tuner so your kid doesn't miss anything. If you return and the program has already started, you can rewind. If you use <Prev>, it only uses one tuner so once you switch to the new channel, you can't rewind the program.

    The VOD is definitely not as "on demand" as cable. One thing to be aware of is that you don't have to wait for it to finish downloading, prior to watching. Its best to wait until the progress bar turns to green first (use playlist to check progress). That indicates you can start watching w/o catching up to the content being downloaded.

    Last tip, if you have time, you can tune to ch 114 or 201 for more info things like how to use your DVR.
  8. Stuart Sweet

    Stuart Sweet The Shadow Knows!

    Jun 18, 2006
    A couple of comments...

    On Demand is not as fast as cable... unless you have really fast internet. With 15Mbps service you can download and start to watch, even HD, within 60 seconds. You don't have to wait until a whole show downloads, just wait for the progress bar in the playlist to turn green and you'll be ok. This could be a minute or half an hour depending on your internet speed.

    For years I had a VCR, then a DVD recorder, in my entertainment center; both had clocks. When I jettisoned those old technologies, I bought a $6 clock radio at Target and put it on top of the DVR. It does just what you want it to do.

    You have my sympathies about the list called "Channels I Get." It's 95% accurate but I admit that's not enough. I suggest you set up one of the two favorites lists to show all the channels you really get.
  9. Mertzen

    Mertzen Hall Of Fame

    Dec 8, 2006
    LOL, you can't imagine how many times I've had switchers complain about that. :lol:
  10. CCarncross

    CCarncross Hall Of Fame

    Jul 19, 2005
    I keep hearing that too. I go over to my buddy's who is still using cable, and I try to figure out a way to turn off the clock on the front of the dvr, its irritating as heck.
  11. Bill Broderick

    Bill Broderick Icon

    Aug 25, 2006
    Long Island
    A good way to take advantage of this feature is to move all network programs up to the top of your Prioritizer lists, with the shows on the "cable channels" below them. Since shows are almost always repeated on the "cable channels" (usually, later the same day), when there is a conflict, you will record the network programs the only time that they air, and the "cable" programs when they rerun.
  12. KsBillsFan

    KsBillsFan AllStar

    Oct 16, 2009
    Thanks guys. I had already made a custom guide list. Now I don't have to see all the shopping channels!!!!

    Ya, the double play is nice since it does buffer, noticed that on Sunday when switching between games.

    Cable OnDemand is instant as it doesn't actually download to your box. I will have to play with DT's OnDemand more, as I do have great bandwidth.
  13. IndyMichael

    IndyMichael Legend/Supporter DBSTalk Gold Club

    Jan 25, 2003
    I got an alarm clock at Target that has the same blue color numbers as the our HD dvr's lights, it sits on top of the bottom one.
  14. Matman

    Matman Legend

    Mar 24, 2008
    Sadly, the clock is about the only thing I miss from my old comcast days, so does my wife when she forgets her glasses and has to squint at the VCR (Yes, we still have one.....) Its one of those things you got so used to for so long, its a pain when its not there despite the multitude of other ways to find out what time it is!!!
  15. RACJ2

    RACJ2 Hall Of Fame

    Aug 2, 2008
    Don't know what brand DVR he has, but my Motorola DVR with cable had a menu item you could change. You could display the channel instead of the time.
  16. CCarncross

    CCarncross Hall Of Fame

    Jul 19, 2005
    Sorry, that wasnt the point, turning off the LED display entirely because it lights up the whole room, and there is no "display off" that I could find. Overall the experiences I've had helping my buddy get setup with the new HD DVR from Comcast have been pretty poor, the interface is second to everyone....what a clunky POS. And from what I understand its one of the newer Motorola's.
  17. RACJ2

    RACJ2 Hall Of Fame

    Aug 2, 2008
    OK, thought knowing what time it was bothered you. Don't think you could turn off the display. Here are a few links I had bookmarked that he might be able to benefit from, if he has a similar DVR to what I had.

    First [Link] is info on programming the remote and the first thing I did was add a 30 sec skip button, which wasn't set up. Second [Link] is to the Motorola website and you can select the model of DVR he has to get more info. You can look at the original Moto manual for the DVR. If he has a 5100/6200 series, this last [Link] shows you how to go into the hidden menu setups.

    Hope that helps!
  18. evan_s

    evan_s Hall Of Fame

    Mar 3, 2008
    Personally I find I like the DirecTV On Demand better. Yeah comcasts started up faster but the lag on any sort of command was even worse than the dvr which was bad to start with. With a good internet connection you can start directv's on demand pretty quickly and the ffw rew etc all function as quickly as the box does on other recordings.
  19. Shades228

    Shades228 DaBears

    Mar 18, 2008
    The blue button pulls up the mini guide while watching tv. It should have the time as well.
  20. dennisj00

    dennisj00 Hall Of Fame

    Sep 27, 2007
    Lake Norman, NC
    Actually the blue button only gives you a 'progress' time in live TV.

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