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· Legend
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been a DISH subscriber since '96, but it looks like the latest court ruling has resulted in an untenable situation for me-- I got a recorded phone call from DISH tonight telling me that my distant networks will be cut off by December 1.

Being such a long time DISH subscriber, I haven't kept up with developments with Direct, so I'm hoping that I can explain my situation here and some of you can help fill in the holes in my knowledge so I can make the right decisions as I make the switch to Direct. Here's the basic data:

1. I'm an RV'er, on the road for several months a year, so I need my distant nets.
2. I do have a home in Phoenix, so would like to have the Phoenix locals (in HD, if possible). If that can't be done in conjunction with distant nets, I'll do without the locals.
3. I do virtually all my TV watching via DVR.

Questions:

1. How many satellites will my dish have to look at to receive all the channels in the top tier package from Direct? The dish on top of my RV (Motosat MD500) can automatically find and lock on to the two DISH satellites at 110 and 119 automatically, and I'm told it can be converted to Direct-- but is two satellites all I'll need to see?

2. Are the DVR's being sold by Direct actually Tivos, and can I purchase them or are they always leased?

3. I haven't had my DISH receivers connected to a phone line, ever. If I were to buy one (dual tuner) DVR for the house, and another for the RV, will I ever have to plug the RV receiver into the phone line?

4. I intend to sign on for whatever the top tier package is with Direct, plus locals, plus distants. With my RV waiver, will I get the distants on all tuners (as I do now with DISH), or will they be restricted to the receiver assigned to the RV?

5. The ideal situation would be to simply buy one dual-tuner DVR, use it in the RV, then take it in the house when we're in Phoenix. Other than the restrictions in the RV waiver regarding the distant nets, is there any reason I can't do that?


Answers to the above, and any other advice, greatly appreciated!
 

· Geek til I die
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9,822 Posts
Questions:

1. How many satellites will my dish have to look at to receive all the channels in the top tier package from Direct? The dish on top of my RV (Motosat MD500) can automatically find and lock on to the two DISH satellites at 110 and 119 automatically, and I'm told it can be converted to Direct-- but is two satellites all I'll need to see?

For SD channels and SD Phoenix locals, 101
For SD channels and HD package, 101, 110, 119
For HD locals, 101, 110, 119, and 103 (KA band)

As you can see, for Phonix HD locals, you will need the 5 lnb AT9 dish, your current dish wont do the KA band they are using for HD locals. On the other hand, the Distant HD feeds are available on the standard satellites, so you wont have to worry about the KA band. All new HD channels added from now on, will require the new KA/KU dish to receive however.

2. Are the DVR's being sold by Direct actually Tivos, and can I purchase them or are they always leased?

Old ones are Tivos, if you can still find one. New ones are DirecTv;s proprietary DVRs. They are leased technically, the fee being the same as the Tivo's DVR monthly fee I believe. You can buy your own outright, but I dont see any point.

3. I haven't had my DISH receivers connected to a phone line, ever. If I were to buy one (dual tuner) DVR for the house, and another for the RV, will I ever have to plug the RV receiver into the phone line?

If you want to order PPVs with it, yes. Otherwise, No. They *might* shut them off if you dont call in with the receiver, but a call to the DirecTv main number will get it right back on.

4. I intend to sign on for whatever the top tier package is with Direct, plus locals, plus distants. With my RV waiver, will I get the distants on all tuners (as I do now with DISH), or will they be restricted to the receiver assigned to the RV?

I cant answer this one. Tell em you take both of em on the road with you.

5. The ideal situation would be to simply buy one dual-tuner DVR, use it in the RV, then take it in the house when we're in Phoenix. Other than the restrictions in the RV waiver regarding the distant nets, is there any reason I can't do that?

Thats what I would do.

These are the HD channels for Phoenix:
Phoenix, AZ
5/17/2006
KNXV, KPHO, KPNX, KSAZ, KTVK, FSN Arizona
 

· Éminence grise
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1. All of the standard package (TC, TC+, TC Premier) channels, as well as Phoenix locals come via the 101 satellite. HD channels would be on other satellites.

2. Directv no longer sells Tivo-based DVRs, although you can purchase them from a few places (new or used). I'm pretty sure it would be considered owned in that case. The non-Tivo R15 DVR would be leased (no real disadvantage to that) with no upgrade fee to a new subscriber.

3. With a Tivo-based DVR, you need to plug it into a phone line (any line, not necessarily your own) for part of the setup process, but not thereafter.

4&5. These aren't addressed in the DTV web page on RV accounts http://www.directv.com/DTVAPP/global/contentPage.jsp?assetId=120007, but a CSR should be able to answer your questions.
 

· Legend
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the replies, that's very helpful.

I'm disappointed that Direct TV has gone to the proprietary DVR's-- that's what DISH did, of course, and it's been a fiasco. I was an unintentional beta tester for a few of their DVR boxes, and my perusal of the threads on the R15 indicate that owners of those boxes are going through a lot of similar travail. That's the price we pay for being early adopters, I guess.

I'll call a CSR today and see what they can tell me about the RV waiver questions.

Here's one more, if you don't mind: during construction of our house, I had two runs of R6 installed from the dish location to my entertainment center. Those two cables have been sufficient for the two single tuner DISH boxes I use there, but I may want to go to two, two-tuner boxes in the Direct setup. Are there multiswitches or other hardware that will enable an installer to hook up all four tuners using just those two cables, or are they going to have to run a couple more?

Thanks!
 

· Registered
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DennyC said:
....
Here's one more, if you don't mind: during construction of our house, I had two runs of R6 installed from the dish location to my entertainment center. Those two cables have been sufficient for the two single tuner DISH boxes I use there, but I may want to go to two, two-tuner boxes in the Direct setup. Are there multiswitches or other hardware that will enable an installer to hook up all four tuners using just those two cables, or are they going to have to run a couple more?

Thanks!
You will need to run two more cables.
 

· Cool Member
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Davenlr said:
Questions:

1. How many satellites will my dish have to look at to receive all the channels in the top tier package from Direct? The dish on top of my RV (Motosat MD500) can automatically find and lock on to the two DISH satellites at 110 and 119 automatically.
Is there a particular reason or benefit that you went with that style of a tilt-up half dish configuration in the Motosat vs. the dome configurations like the KVH Tracvision R6 or A7 (flat)? Won't the newer, low-profile dome styles pick up all the sats needed for SD and HD now automatically and fully in motion?

Are you using the Motosat for Internet also, and if so, has that been a good combined solution?
 

· Legend
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
LaserMark4 said:
Is there a particular reason or benefit that you went with that style of a tilt-up half dish configuration in the Motosat vs. the dome configurations like the KVH Tracvision R6 or A7 (flat)? Won't the newer, low-profile dome styles pick up all the sats needed for SD and HD now automatically and fully in motion?

Are you using the Motosat for Internet also, and if so, has that been a good combined solution?
I went with the MotoSat dish over a dome for a few reasons:

1. I had Dish at the time (have since switched to Direct) and it was the only system available that looked at 119 and 110 simultaneously (with my Direct setup, it looks at 101 as well). The dome dishes all looked at one satellite at a time, and had to switch back and forth (sometimes automatically, sometimes manually, and with some amount of delay) if you changed to a channel that was broadcast from a different satellite. We wanted a system that operated just like the one at home, and the Motosat was the only one (at that time, at least) that offered that. I haven't looked at RV dishes since, there may be dome models now that will look at multiple satellites simultaneously.

2. The dome systems, with their smaller dishes, generally show lower signal strengths and are more susceptible to rain fade than a larger, open dish.

3. The dome systems can have rain fade issues even when it doesn't rain-- i.e., water collecting on the dome, be it from rain or heavy dew, can mess with the signal. They sell spray on stuff for domes (ala Rainex) to help alleviate the problem, but I still see people in campgrounds wiping off their domes after a rain. I have no desire to be climbing around on the wet roof of my motorhome.

4. I drive, she navigates, no kids, so we really didn't have much interest in an in-motion dish. The only advantage to us would be that we could record stuff to the DVR while going down the road, and it would make it easier to pick a campsite without tree issues. For us, those factors didn't outweigh numbers 1 thorugh 3 above.

We don't have an internet-capable dish, but those that have them love them. Lots of information on them here: http://www.datastormusers.com/

Denny
 

· Cool Member
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DennyC said:
I went with the MotoSat dish over a dome for a few reasons:

1. I had Dish at the time (have since switched to Direct) and it was the only system available that looked at 119 and 110 simultaneously (with my Direct setup, it looks at 101 as well). The dome dishes all looked at one satellite at a time, and had to switch back and forth (sometimes automatically, sometimes manually, and with some amount of delay) if you changed to a channel that was broadcast from a different satellite. We wanted a system that operated just like the one at home, and the Motosat was the only one (at that time, at least) that offered that. I haven't looked at RV dishes since, there may be dome models now that will look at multiple satellites simultaneously.

2. The dome systems, with their smaller dishes, generally show lower signal strengths and are more susceptible to rain fade than a larger, open dish.

3. The dome systems can have rain fade issues even when it doesn't rain-- i.e., water collecting on the dome, be it from rain or heavy dew, can mess with the signal. They sell spray on stuff for domes (ala Rainex) to help alleviate the problem, but I still see people in campgrounds wiping off their domes after a rain. I have no desire to be climbing around on the wet roof of my motorhome.

4. I drive, she navigates, no kids, so we really didn't have much interest in an in-motion dish. The only advantage to us would be that we could record stuff to the DVR while going down the road, and it would make it easier to pick a campsite without tree issues. For us, those factors didn't outweigh numbers 1 thorugh 3 above.

We don't have an internet-capable dish, but those that have them love them. Lots of information on them here: http://www.datastormusers.com/Denny
Super helpful, Denny-- those are some great reasons and perspectives.

We are actually integrating this RV setup also into an emergency response capability, so quality and "always up" is crucial. Non-movement for 2+ sats locking is important too. We are also looking at site based sats for a mobile Command Center structure. This site based unit may be a tri-pod affair on an umbilical cord using a 3way residential unit. Live TV feeds of locals are critical, so we are sorting through all the options.

I have Dish at home with a 622 DVR and thought I would just transfer that to the RV as well. But like you, increased performance outweighs the motion usage in my mind also. I am interested in the Internet features too, so I'll check the links. Your non-dome application may be the best solution sounds like.

Mark S.
 
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