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Cool Member
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello! I am about to enter the scary realm of HDTV from DirecTV. As I am an avid Tivo user today I am asking D* about the HR-20. I've read over many of the posts in this forum, but I am a bit confused on some items. Any answers to the questions below or general advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

1. My area does have the capability to recieve HD locals from D*. Will the HR20 allow me to record the HD programs from these channels?

2. Why are there so many posts looking for OTA HD reception and recording in the HR20? Is that b/c many folks live in areas where HD locals are not available from D*?

3. D* says they will cover install with my upgrade cost of the HR20. Has this gone well for others? Has D* installed the HR20, new dish, etc. well for you? My concern is that I have other TVs (not HD) running D* and I need them to continue to recieve SD programming.

4. Personal opinion question. Should I push the button and get the HR20 now or should I wait a few months? I want to make sure some new and better stuff isn't just right around the corner.

5. D* tells me I can get the HR20 Plus right away (2 weeks) with no waiting. I see on their site and some other posts that there is a waiting list. Are they giving me special treatment or are they lying to me?

6. Last but not least. I have numerous trees in my yard on all sides except front. My current dish gets great reception by going over the trees (dish is on west side of house about 4 feet from house and angles over the home and trees). I know I will need a new dish. Are the sats in the general same vicinity? or will the new dish be placed elsewhere? I'm doubly concerned here. That a) they won't get a signal if they have to move it due to the trees or b) that they set it up and get a great signal because it is fall with no leaves but when sprint comes I get hosed.

THANKS so much!

JS
 

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Legend in his own mind...
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JudgeSmails said:
Hello! I am about to enter the scary realm of HDTV from DirecTV. As I am an avid Tivo user today I am asking D* about the HR-20. I've read over many of the posts in this forum, but I am a bit confused on some items. Any answers to the questions below or general advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

1. My area does have the capability to recieve HD locals from D*. Will the HR20 allow me to record the HD programs from these channels?

2. Why are there so many posts looking for OTA HD reception and recording in the HR20? Is that b/c many folks live in areas where HD locals are not available from D*?

3. D* says they will cover install with my upgrade cost of the HR20. Has this gone well for others? Has D* installed the HR20, new dish, etc. well for you? My concern is that I have other TVs (not HD) running D* and I need them to continue to recieve SD programming.

4. Personal opinion question. Should I push the button and get the HR20 now or should I wait a few months? I want to make sure some new and better stuff isn't just right around the corner.

5. D* tells me I can get the HR20 Plus right away (2 weeks) with no waiting. I see on their site and some other posts that there is a waiting list. Are they giving me special treatment or are they lying to me?

6. Last but not least. I have numerous trees in my yard on all sides except front. My current dish gets great reception by going over the trees (dish is on west side of house about 4 feet from house and angles over the home and trees). I know I will need a new dish. Are the sats in the general same vicinity? or will the new dish be placed elsewhere? I'm doubly concerned here. That a) they won't get a signal if they have to move it due to the trees or b) that they set it up and get a great signal because it is fall with no leaves but when sprint comes I get hosed.

THANKS so much!

JS
1) Yes
2) OTA picture quality is superior. D* doesn't deliver all the subchannels via the sat, just the main channel. OTA doesn't go out (usually) due to weather like the sats do.
3) Went well for me. They came and installed a new slimline dish and WB68 multiswitch. Insist on a new multiswitch, and check with the CSRs before the tech comes out... make sure the install order says to bring a new WB68. It can handle the new Ka signals, and your current one can't. [edit] They will install a multiswitch big enough to provide full signals to all your subscribed D* receivers.
4) Nothing new and better from D* that I'm aware of. This is latest and greatest, and of course there are a few pains that come with bleeding edge.
5) Might be getting special treatment, they might be lying. It would depend on how long you've been with them, your service level, payment history, etc... Are you an "A List" customer?
6) The new sats are a few degrees 'outside' the current swath, but not usually a worry. Do you have a continuous view over the trees, or are you looking through gaps?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Meklos said:
1) Yes
2) OTA picture quality is superior. D* doesn't deliver all the subchannels via the sat, just the main channel. OTA doesn't go out (usually) due to weather like the sats do.
3) Went well for me. They came and installed a new slimline dish and WB68 multiswitch. Insist on a new multiswitch, and check with the CSRs before the tech comes out... make sure the install order says to bring a new WB68. It can handle the new Ka signals, and your current one can't. [edit] They will install a multiswitch big enough to provide full signals to all your subscribed D* receivers.
4) Nothing new and better from D* that I'm aware of. This is latest and greatest, and of course there are a few pains that come with bleeding edge.
5) Might be getting special treatment, they might be lying. It would depend on how long you've been with them, your service level, payment history, etc... Are you an "A List" customer?
6) The new sats are a few degrees 'outside' the current swath, but not usually a worry. Do you have a continuous view over the trees, or are you looking through gaps?
Thanks Meklos! As for being the "A List" customer, not sure. Been with them for years and always pay on time so they are cutting me a slight deal on the price of the HR-20.

As for my trees, The current dish is going through them I believe. They are the big ol' pines so going over is a bit tough.

JS
 

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JudgeSmails said:
1. My area does have the capability to recieve HD locals from D*. Will the HR20 allow me to record the HD programs from these channels?
Sometimes. One or two recordings a week will be "unwatchable" which means corrupted in such a way as the HR20 will dump them and not let you watch. Also, it randomly drops scheduled recordings beforehand, so some of your shows will not record in the first place. If you go for the HR20, make sure to leave your TiVo connected as a backup for all the recordings the HR20 misses.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
islesfan said:
Sometimes. One or two recordings a week will be "unwatchable" which means corrupted in such a way as the HR20 will dump them and not let you watch. Also, it randomly drops scheduled recordings beforehand, so some of your shows will not record in the first place. If you go for the HR20, make sure to leave your TiVo connected as a backup for all the recordings the HR20 misses.
Wow, that stinks. This product is still that buggy? Interesting. Of course the D* rep made it sounds like the HR-20 was the greatest invention since sliced bread. Oh well, I'll still probably give it a whirl. I would rather deal with a spotty HR-20 than give Comcast a dime.

JS
 

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You make it, We break it
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To be fair, the experience has been different for different people, but yes it is possible you may run into some problems. Islesfan has had a helluva time with failed/unstable recordings, issues with sports subscriptions like NHL, etc. Others like myself have not. So it is a bit of a crapshoot at this point.

JudgeSmails said:
Wow, that stinks. This product is still that buggy? Interesting. Of course the D* rep made it sounds like the HR-20 was the greatest invention since sliced bread. Oh well, I'll still probably give it a whirl. I would rather deal with a spotty HR-20 than give Comcast a dime.

JS
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Random, slighly related question. How much does D* charge to break a contract? If this product is lousy or I have install issues I will fight them tooth and nail for compensation (and I am a damn good fighter on things like that). But worst case scenario, if I sign the 2 year subscription and am forced to cancel, any idea on the fee?

JS
 

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JudgeSmails said:
Hello! I am about to enter the scary realm of HDTV from DirecTV. As I am an avid Tivo user today I am asking D* about the HR-20. I've read over many of the posts in this forum, but I am a bit confused on some items. Any answers to the questions below or general advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

1. My area does have the capability to recieve HD locals from D*. Will the HR20 allow me to record the HD programs from these channels?

2. Why are there so many posts looking for OTA HD reception and recording in the HR20? Is that b/c many folks live in areas where HD locals are not available from D*?

3. D* says they will cover install with my upgrade cost of the HR20. Has this gone well for others? Has D* installed the HR20, new dish, etc. well for you? My concern is that I have other TVs (not HD) running D* and I need them to continue to recieve SD programming.

4. Personal opinion question. Should I push the button and get the HR20 now or should I wait a few months? I want to make sure some new and better stuff isn't just right around the corner.

5. D* tells me I can get the HR20 Plus right away (2 weeks) with no waiting. I see on their site and some other posts that there is a waiting list. Are they giving me special treatment or are they lying to me?

6. Last but not least. I have numerous trees in my yard on all sides except front. My current dish gets great reception by going over the trees (dish is on west side of house about 4 feet from house and angles over the home and trees). I know I will need a new dish. Are the sats in the general same vicinity? or will the new dish be placed elsewhere? I'm doubly concerned here. That a) they won't get a signal if they have to move it due to the trees or b) that they set it up and get a great signal because it is fall with no leaves but when sprint comes I get hosed.

THANKS so much!

JS
Only one of your questions can be answered definitivly!
1) YES

The others well...........

2) Like Meklos said.. Sub channels and some others are not carried by D*

3) Some have had nightmare installations! Depending who your HSP is, these guys are poorly trained and under paid! If you want it done right hire someone who does it professionaly or do it yourself!

4) This is it (as far as D* is concerned), once they get it right it will be one hell of a box!

5) CSR's, well you might have to talk to six or seven of them to get two to say the same thing, so who knows if they're lying or just misinformed!

6) This may be your biggest problem! The new dish is centered off the 101, the MPEG4 sats are @ 99 & 103 so they shouldn't be a problem, but 110 & 119 might be! Have your installer do a site survey first just to make sure!

Good luck, whatever you decide!
 

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JudgeSmails said:
Random, slighly related question. How much does D* charge to break a contract?
$12.50 per month for the remainder of the contract. This assumes that you leave DirecTV entirely. Be sure to read the lease addendum so you understand all of the terms.
 

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JudgeSmails said:
Wow, that stinks. This product is still that buggy? Interesting. Of course the D* rep made it sounds like the HR-20 was the greatest invention since sliced bread. Oh well, I'll still probably give it a whirl. I would rather deal with a spotty HR-20 than give Comcast a dime.

JS
User experience varies. I had a few unwatchable "partial recordings" in September. Since then, I consider my issues minor. I haven't had a show I can't watch in the last two months. Nothing a reset hasn't fixed. I personally liked it enough that I deactivated my HD Tivo two weeks ago.
 

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JudgeSmails said:
Hello! I am about to enter the scary realm of HDTV from DirecTV. As I am an avid Tivo user today I am asking D* about the HR-20. I've read over many of the posts in this forum, but I am a bit confused on some items. Any answers to the questions below or general advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

1. My area does have the capability to recieve HD locals from D*. Will the HR20 allow me to record the HD programs from these channels?

2. Why are there so many posts looking for OTA HD reception and recording in the HR20? Is that b/c many folks live in areas where HD locals are not available from D*?

3. D* says they will cover install with my upgrade cost of the HR20. Has this gone well for others? Has D* installed the HR20, new dish, etc. well for you? My concern is that I have other TVs (not HD) running D* and I need them to continue to recieve SD programming.

4. Personal opinion question. Should I push the button and get the HR20 now or should I wait a few months? I want to make sure some new and better stuff isn't just right around the corner.

5. D* tells me I can get the HR20 Plus right away (2 weeks) with no waiting. I see on their site and some other posts that there is a waiting list. Are they giving me special treatment or are they lying to me?

6. Last but not least. I have numerous trees in my yard on all sides except front. My current dish gets great reception by going over the trees (dish is on west side of house about 4 feet from house and angles over the home and trees). I know I will need a new dish. Are the sats in the general same vicinity? or will the new dish be placed elsewhere? I'm doubly concerned here. That a) they won't get a signal if they have to move it due to the trees or b) that they set it up and get a great signal because it is fall with no leaves but when sprint comes I get hosed.

THANKS so much!

JS
1. Yes.
2. For me, I have only two HD locals avaiable, so I do have to reply on OTA.
3. It went well for me. There is no guarantee what you will run into.
4. No one can really answer this question but you. I had low expectation of HR20 because I liked Tivo so much. So far, HR20 exceeded my expectation. I am lucky I haven't run into a problem that really ticks me off. My biggest problem with DTV was the 2-year commitment thing they are slamming on you anytime they have a chance. I wasn't going to go to Comcast for I don't like them. FIOS isn't available yet. The sooner I start the 2 year clock, the quicker I will be free. Not that I have a plan to go. I just like freedom. HR20 probably is good enough that I won't crave for another DVR for a while.
 

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One other thing, some areas have HR20s in stock or have a very short waiting list, so CSR may have been telling straight story for your area. I had a very minor wait for my units in SLC when other areas were sold ahead for weeks.

And welcome to the forums! :welcome_s

Cheers,
Tom
 
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