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Should I buy a 921 for OTA HDTV?

Discussion in 'Other HD Receiver Support Forum (811, 921, 942)' started by brettbolt, Feb 23, 2006.

  1. brettbolt

    brettbolt Legend

    Feb 22, 2006
    I currently have a Dish 501, an LG LST-3510A HD Receiver, and a Sony 36" HDTV.

    With my current setup there is no way to record / time-shift HDTV. I'm looking for a relatively low cost way to do this (my wife says I can't spend more than $400).

    I've read here about problems with the program guide, but I can live with it even if it's only 2 days. I don't need the Dish HDTV channels, just the ones from my OTA antenna. So the fact that I will not get MPEG4 is not a concern.

    If my use is mainly for recording OTA HDTV, should I get a 921 off of eBay? It would cost about $290 with shipping.
  2. kmcnamara

    kmcnamara Icon

    Jan 30, 2004
    Why not? My 921 has gotten pretty stable. They'll have to fix this guide data problem so that shouldn't be a long-term problem.
  3. npep

    npep New Member

    Jan 25, 2003
    Check your PM
  4. woofwoofmo

    woofwoofmo Cool Member

    Jan 24, 2006
    Only thing I'd buy a 921 for is a boat anchor.:grin:
  5. Grandude

    Grandude RichardParker II

    Oct 21, 2004
    It sounds like you could be a prime candidate for the $299 Dish offer for a 622 receiver. Less than $400 but it would increase your monthly costs a bit depending on what you now are subscribing to.
  6. jergenf

    jergenf Godfather

    Mar 31, 2005
    I you're new to HD you're better off taking the 622 $299 lease offer than buying a 921. However if all your interested in OTA locals and you can get a 921 dirt cheap it might be worth it.

    But you can also get a HD tuner card for you computer that will record analog and digital TV and provide guide data from PSIP.The 921 does not record analog stations just displays them and doesn't provide OTA guide data for non-subs.
  7. brettbolt

    brettbolt Legend

    Feb 22, 2006
    Thank you all for your input, ranging from "Boat Anchor", to "Why not, Dish will eventually fix the guide problem". You have all helped me make an informed decision, which is to not get a 921.

    Originally, I thought the only option for the 622 was to purchase it for $699. I didn't know that the lease was available for only $299 plus $6.00 monthly rental fee. So I just got off the phone with Dish and my Vip 622 install date is 3/15 ! That is much sooner than I expected, since its new and in high demand.

    I'll post my observations about the 622 here after I get it.
  8. kmcnamara

    kmcnamara Icon

    Jan 30, 2004
    Good for you. When I ordered my 622 over a week ago, they gave me an install date of 4/3. :confused:
  9. JerryLA

    JerryLA Legend

    Dec 29, 2003
    Wise choice!!
  10. brettbolt

    brettbolt Legend

    Feb 22, 2006
    Move to Rockin, CA :) Seriously, I expected at least 2 or 3 months. I guess the install date is more related to the local installer's schedule than 622 availability.
  11. Michael P

    Michael P Hall Of Fame

    Oct 27, 2004
    The $6 is not a monthly rental fee (unless you have other leased receivers on your account). The only $6 fee (not to be confused with $5.99 mirror or DVR fees) is if you lease an HD receiver and don't subscribe to the HD pack.
  12. madbrain

    madbrain Legend

    Dec 10, 2004
    You can use the 921 as an OTA HD DVR only.
    Be aware that it will not operate unless you also hook up at least one of the satellite dish inputs ... Unfortunately it gets its time from Dish network and cannot timeshift otherwise.

    You do need to activate it initially if you purchase a new one, but if it's a used one, it would be already activated and up with the latest software, so there would be no need to add it to your Dish account, unless you require a program guide for your OTA HD. But in that case you would also to subscribe to satellite locals for another $5/month. My experience is that many of the problems with the 921 are related to the guide, and it's just not worth having one. Save yourself both the $6 additional receiver monthly fee, and the $5 satellite local monthly fee, and just leave your 921 off your Dish account. This is how I use my 921 now. Actually I discontinued my entire Dish account 3 months ago due to dish's inability to fix the 921 bugs. The 921 still crashes once in a while, but not as much as when it had a program guide.

    I set my OTA timers using data from an external program guide (but free - titantv.com).
  13. Rogueone

    Rogueone Hall Of Fame

    Jan 29, 2004
    be careful getting a 921 or 942 if you don't have one already. there are reports of Dish not activating them for persons who don't have the old HD service already. And if they do activate as an SD unit, they deactivate the OTA ability. I'd be sure to ask Dish if they would actually let you activate before buying
  14. motrac

    motrac AllStar

    Jan 5, 2003
    I did the same thing,dumped Dish and use my 921 as an ota only recorder.
  15. brettbolt

    brettbolt Legend

    Feb 22, 2006
    So if I get DishHD Silver or Gold (for a 622) and don't subscribe to locals, will I still be able to view them with my OTA antenna? (even if there is no local guide data)
  16. rdopso

    rdopso Legend

    Jan 26, 2004
    There is no way I would hang onto my bug prone 921 as long as I can turn the friggin thing in to Dish for a new 622 for only a hundred bucks. While the concept of the 921 was good, Dish was never able to get the software sorted out so it worked as well as my trusty and stable non-HD 721. I sure hope the user frustration level with the new 622 is lower than it has been with the 921. If not, Dish is going to be in serious trouble with their customers.
  17. lujan

    lujan Hall Of Fame

    Feb 10, 2004
    I've heard that one before, but Dish never gets in trouble no matter how bad their software might be on the 921.
  18. brettbolt

    brettbolt Legend

    Feb 22, 2006
    They may not get in trouble legally, but the high frustration level is losing customers. I'm still hanging in there with a 501 and a Vip622 on order. I HOPE they are able to deliver software updates that don't break things previously working (like the 9 day guide).

    I consider my ViP 622 18-month lease to be a substantial $ risk, based on Dish's performance with the 921.

    I've decided to do everything possible on my end by adding a 2nd Dish 500 with a Dish Pro Plus LNB (pointing at 129) myself, rather than settling for the Dish 1000 compromise. I'm in California, and based on posts here , I'll get a better signal with a separate dish. Also I put my OTA HDTV antenna on a 20 foot mast -- as high as possible without upsetting the neighbors.

    So hopefully, bringing in the best possible OTA and satellite signals for my location will keep the 622 stable.

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