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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm about ready to aquire a 501 and have a couple of questions.

While watching a show, it is possible to hit the record button and start recording the show from the beginning unlike the Dishplayer which dumps the buffer?

How many days are on the EPG?

Does anyone know of any screen shots that I can look at containing the EPG and other screens on the 501?

Will the 501 work with my current LNB's and switches or do I need the "Dishpro" equipment?

The hard drive inside is 40GB right?

How is the new search function compared to the Dishplayer?

I know these are easy questions and I know I saw the answers somewhere but I can't seem to find them now.
 

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While watching a show, it is possible to hit the record button and start recording the show from the beginning unlike the Dishplayer which dumps the buffer?

Yes you can. But you have to have had the 501 tuned to the channel you want to go back and record. I did this last night (good Start Trek TNG episode!). The 501 was already on channel 168 from 5:50pm. TNG started at 6:00pm. I had to take care of my son, and came downstairs at 6:15pm. Fast rewound to the start, hit record and there it is! Nice feature.

How many days are on the EPG?

I think it's 9

Does anyone know of any screen shots that I can look at containing the EPG and other screens on the 501?


http://www.dishnetwork.com/images/technology/dish_interactive/Quartere.jpg"
http://www.dishnetwork.com/content/technology/itv/index.shtml"

Will the 501 work with my current LNB's and switches or do I need the "Dishpro" equipment?


I had a Dish 500 dish and 5000 receiver with a SW-21 switch and dual LNBs. The installer added another SW-21 and just used the spare LNBs to run the new coax (I only had one receiver before).


The hard drive inside is 40GB right?


Yep, I think so. Approx. 35 hours record time.

How is the new search function compared to the Dishplayer?

Don't know. Never had a Dishplayer. I do like the search function though, especially the History function. Shows all previous searches, so you don't have to re-type, which is a pain.

(Note from ScottG - Cleaned up the HTML to VB Code)
 

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Chris, a couple of notes on the search feature: It simply searches for strings of characters in the title and description. Fos instances, searching for "cat" would bring up "catch," "scat," "catastrophe," "polecat," etc., ad infinitum. You can work around it by searching for [space]cat[space].

It also includes channels you do not subscribe to, which is just a minor irritation.

One nice thing on the 501: After it executes a timed recording, it returns to the channel to which it was tuned before recording. It's a handy little feature if, for instance, you want to leave it tuned to the Weather Channel so you can skip back to the local forecast immediately or ESPN to skip back to the score you're interested in.
 
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Here is the text from my post from the thread that I linked to above: The 501 is a great basic DVR!

The 501 has some neat recording features. Its record button initiates a totally manual recording which must be manually stopped--a feature offered by no other DVR.

To use the 501's timer to end a recording the EPG (or "browse") must be called up before pressing record.

But here's the best part--the greatest thing since sliced TiVo--er, sliced bread!

When ititiating a manual recording it's possible to RW to any point in the ongoing recording buffer and start recording from that point--up to an hour into the "past". What's important to remember is that while such a recording can be stopped manually at any time it can't be stopped in the "past". Start at the beginning of the recording buffer and stop "now" and you've got an hour long recording.

If you bring up the EPG (or "browse") before starting a recording from the recording buffer the recording will stop when the current program indicated in the EPG ends. Like all timer recordings this recording from the buffer with the EPG (or "browse") called up can be further edited to end automatically at any time after the present.

BTW, TiVo is the only other DVR to offer a similiar capability--it offers the option to do so when initiating a recording. TiVo's recording buffer is only a half hour long however and TiVo will only record from the start of the current program, not earlier. TiVo's recording will end when the current program ends, but it can be padded in coarse preset intervals up to three hours.

So although TiVo is more automated the 501 does a better job with much more control over the parameters than TiVo at recording from the "past"! Although describing the proceedure sounds complicated using the 501's recording options are simple to actually do! This is probably the 501's best feature.
 

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EKB Editor
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Originally posted by Chris Blount
While watching a show, it is possible to hit the record button and start recording the show from the beginning unlike the Dishplayer which dumps the buffer?
...
How many days are on the EPG?
These are some of the added features explained at http://echostar.swiki.net/291 .
How is the new search function compared to the Dishplayer?
Ways it's worse:
  • No PIP or sound while entering a search or reviewing results (hopefully someday Dish will allow programs and menus to co-exist).
  • Results list does not show which programs are already selected for recording - you have to press Select or Info.
  • Unable to use punctuation (SG-1, just SG returns too big a list).
  • No keyboard, though the phone-style entry isn't too bad.
  • Limited to a 15-character search string.
Ways it's better:
  • History! Every search is automatically saved and can be selected from a list.
  • Able to search on program attributes. (_DD_)
  • An in-progress search can be cancelled if you see the results getting to big to wade through.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for all the info guys! I'm actually looking forward to trying out the 501. Been curious about how it stands up against DP. With good reports coming in about the last software upgrade, I figured it was time. I'm also thinking about keeping the DP in the same room and forgetting the 721. At least this way I have dual tuners without the price tag.
 

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Originally posted by BobaBird

These are some of the added features explained at http://echostar.swiki.net/291 .

Ways it's worse:
  • No PIP or sound while entering a search or reviewing results (hopefully someday Dish will allow programs and menus to co-exist).
  • Results list does not show which programs are already selected for recording - you have to press Select or Info.
  • Unable to use punctuation (SG-1, just SG returns too big a list).
  • No keyboard, though the phone-style entry isn't too bad.
  • Limited to a 15-character search string.
Ways it's better:
  • History! Every search is automatically saved and can be selected from a list.
  • Able to search on program attributes. (_DD_)
  • An in-progress search can be cancelled if you see the results getting to big to wade through.
Actually it does indicate that a Program is already selected for recording in the field before the Program name after a Search. There will be the Icon that Dish uses for Timer event in that field if it's selected for recording.

John
 

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The search limit is 500 entries. I find this to be a pain in the butt, since it picks up every channel from Dish. I do a lot of searching the Movies Themes and only about 1/3 of the entries are relative to me since I don't subscribe to all Movie channels and I don't ever order PPV.

I would like to see the option to sort only through either a) My current Favorites List or b) My All Subscribed list.

With the Movies Themes, it barely goes 24 hours before hittting the 500 entry limit, so I have to check daily and wade through a pile of crap that I could care less about.
 
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