Will DirecTv install a box you purchase externally?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by dcmidnight, Nov 16, 2007.

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  1. dcmidnight

    dcmidnight Mentor

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    Jul 6, 2007
    I've just run into the absurdity that is the DirecTv upgrade system ("sorry even if you order an HR20 we cant guarantee thats what you will get") so I wondered, if I buy one externally at Circuit City will they install it or give you a hassle about it? Seems like an unfortunate waste of my time and possibly giving up a free upgrade deal, but the frustration with them is really growing.

    Follow up, what if they send out an installer and he didnt bring an HR20, would they charge me if I canceled the install on the spot? Or could I have the guy just install the dish and come back with an HR20? No new lines will need to be run.
     
  2. Stuart Sweet

    Stuart Sweet The Shadow Knows!

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    Jun 18, 2006
    You can install them yourself if you already have the lines. Or, you can call DIRECTV and I think they will install for you.

    Rather than canceling on the spot, I would call DIRECTV with the guy there and explain. If he brings an HR21 and you wanted an HR20, you might have some leverage if your market were not served by HD locals. I would guess that's not the case for you.
     
  3. dcmidnight

    dcmidnight Mentor

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    Jul 6, 2007
    Regardless of that, I'm not at all willing to give up the 10-15 subchannels I can get through OTA (PBS, Weather channels etc) or getting perfect network reception in the rain and snow.

    Sorry I didnt explain, I am a longtime DTV customer (1999) with an HR10-250.
     
  4. donshan

    donshan Godfather

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    Jun 18, 2007
    Yes, this past October 15 I bought a second HR 20 from Circuit City ( At D*'s suggestion in order to be sure I got an HR20-700, and not a HR 21), and then phoned back to D* and they scheduled a free install of my new HR20 to the 5 lnb dish. Earlier in June I got a better upgrade deal and replaced my HR10-250 with the first HR20-700 and new 5 lnb dish. If this is your first upgrade from the HR10-250 you should talk to D* about it. ( Call at least twice since different csrs typically give different stories). They are anxious to get all HR10 customers to MPEG-4 as by the end of 2008 it is likely all D* MPEG-2 HD will disappear from the HR10. The D* stated goal is to have 50% of customers on MPEG-4 HD by the end of 2008 which is a huge growth rate. They want you to convert, but the first deal offered may not be the best.

    I understand your concern. I had a HR10-250 that preformed well for four years and it was a hard decision to switch to the HR20, since it is a tradeoff of losing some features(Tivo, OTA scanning) for others (lots of MPEG 4 HD channels, more hours on the DVR using MPEG-4 , and new HR20 features not on the HR10).

    Further details:

    In this small DMA ( #126) I found that D* provides a workable set of local channels and sub channels in the HR20 OTA setup and Guide that is downloaded for this market, instead of scanning for local OTA channels like the HR10 did. IMO they do this so that all the program Guide listings they provide are then searchable and recordable on the DVR with these local HD programs labeled "HD" . The HR10 would find other channels by scanning, but then did not have Guide data.I had to set a manual DVR recording.

    D* provides complete local OTA support in the Guide allowing DVR recording on the HR20 for all five of our local HD channels (NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX, PBS), including all the sub channels too on NBC, ABC, and PBS with CBS and Fox not having subchannels. I lost a few secondary SD subchannels we rarely watched anyway. I cured that this minor problem connecting the antenna to both the HR20 and the internal ASTC digital tuner in my HDTV using a splitter. If your HDTV does not have an internal digital tuner you have to option to activate both a HR20 and keep your HR10 active too ( if you have enough cables to the dish) and use S-video for these SD subchannels. I doubt you will find any HD on the HR10 that is not equal or much better on the HR20 considering all the new MPEG-4 HD.

    The interface of the HR20 is different than the HR10, it took some learning and programming of a Harmony remote to get it right, but now that we are used to the HR20 the benefits of all these HD channels off set a few quirks of the HR20, which does have a number of features missing on the HR10 besides just the MPEG-4 support for the new HD channels.

    I am glad we switched from the HR10-250, but it took several months to learn the HR20. .
     
  5. bobnielsen

    bobnielsen Éminence grise

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    Jun 29, 2006
    Bainbridge...
    Directv will provide a standard installation, although just replacing the HR10-250 with a HR21-700 is trivial. I assume you also need to have a 5 LNB dish installed, so you should call and ask to have it installed.

    You would probably get a better price by ordering it from Directv instead of a retailer, but when calling to order the installation you can always ask and might get some credits.
     
  6. Stuart Sweet

    Stuart Sweet The Shadow Knows!

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    Jun 18, 2006
    Perhaps you should consider adding the HR21 DVR additionally and keeping your HR10 for OTA recording.
     
  7. Milominderbinder2

    Milominderbinder2 Cutting Edge: ECHELON '08

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    Oct 8, 2006
    First, follow exactly what Hasan says to make sure you get an HR20 not an HR21:

    How to get an HR20 instead of HR21

    That is important enough that I added it to the HD DVR FAQ:
    How can I be sure I will get an HR20 instead of an HR21? I want all of my local channels!
    → How to get an HR20 instead of HR21 (Thanks to Hasan)

    Also, to do this it is critical that you follow the:

    ● Ordering Tips

    ● Installation Guide

    - Craig
     
  8. donshan

    donshan Godfather

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    Jun 18, 2007
    Bob, is that HR21-700 a typo? Replacing a HR10-250 with a HR20-700 is trivial, but replacing with a HR21-700 opens up the OTA debate (over-discussed!) on many other threads. The OP stated he had OTA problems and needs OTA.
     
  9. IndyTom

    IndyTom Cool Member

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    Dec 8, 2006
    I picked up my HR20-700 from Circuit City on Tuesday. I presently have an HR10-250. D* is installing the new receiver and dish at no cost. They provided a $100 credit for the receiver and free HD service/month for a year and a $10 programming credit/month for a year as well.
     
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