Digital Cable vs. DirectTV

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by David Balan, Aug 26, 2001.

  1. David Balan

    David Balan Auditioning

    Aug 20, 2001
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    I just purchased a Pioneer SD-582-HD5 (58" HDTV). I have digital cable, and was perfectly happy with it, until I saw it on the big screen. It is a good picture, but since I upgraded the TV, I want a great picture. I have a few questions.
    * Can anyone tell me their experience with picture quality between digital cable and DirectTV? What other comparisons of satisfaction can you relay?
    * I am interested in the DirectTV with the Ultimate TV package. Does anyone know if there is a receiver system that has Ultimate TV and HDTV capability, or will I have to purchase a Ultimate TV receiver, and a HDTV decoder?
    This is my first post. I've read a lot, and have been impressed with the level of knowledge on these boards.
  2. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

    Aug 22, 2000
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    There is no PVR receiver that also does HDTV. Dish has announced the model 921 for late next year. Your other option is an HD decoder card for your computer that allows you to record.
  3. Jeremy Little

    Jeremy Little Supporting Actor

    Jun 9, 2001
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    Being from Oklahoma myself, I would recommend satellite. Good ol' Cox cable has a rather bad picture on your non-digital channels. Basically everything under channel 100. Even with Digital Cable, these get NO enhancement. They continue to look bad. Also, they have lots of pixellating on the digital channels. You may ask yourself, more than Satellite? Yes, even more than satellite.
  4. Michael St. Clair

    May 3, 1999
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    Which digital cable do you have? Warner Digital Cable has even LESS compression artifacts than DirecTV and DISH Network. There's a lot I don't like about cable companies, but depending on your provider it can give a BETTER picture than DBS.
    Hopefully the advent of spot-beams changes this.
    Don't believe me? Here are some quotes from
    "Now in SOME cases, digital cable is good (and it should be noted Time Warner systems are generally considered fairly good, and the TW Digital is fed from a much better source than HITS usually)."
    "Aaron, you are the one who is incorrect. I have had digital cable here in Charlotte,(Time Warner), and trust me, everyone who has seen it, all agree it blows both dbs providers away."
    "I have to fully agree with Jeff on this one, I have Time Warner Digital cable on my 52inch RCA and it puts both dbs providers to shame."
    "DBS still has the better value, but as their picture quality continues to degrade, and cable attempts to strenghten theirs, the gap narrows."
    Do beware HITS-sourced digital cable (, which includes AT&T, TCI, and I think ComCast and some small local companies. They compress the hell out of it before it ever gets to your local provider.
    I hate to keep bringing this up, but not all technology can be lumped into one big bucket. Quality depends on the provider and the implementation.
    [Edited last by Michael St. Clair on August 27, 2001 at 02:13 PM]
  5. Dennis Reno

    Dennis Reno Supporting Actor

    Jun 30, 1997
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    I have not subscribed to digital cable yet, but speaking from experience, the picture on DirecTV is worse than my standard cable, at least in my area.
    I installed DirecTV last year before the start of the NFL season. When you signed up for NFL Sunday Ticket, you received the super-duper package (all sports and movie channels) for three months at no cost. I added in local channels so I could show my wife how much better the picture was with DirecTV on our 50" RPTV (ISF calibrated BTW.) To make a long story short, the local channels were significantly softer looking on DirecTV. I did a "blind" A-B test with my wife. She thought that one feed was so much better that she made a statement regarding how much better the satellite was... but she didn't realize that she was looking at the cable feed!
    As Michael stated in the post above, there are plenty of things to dislike about cable companies. However, the belief that DirecTV will always give a "superior" picture does not always hold true. As they continue to cram more and more channels on the same satellite the picture quality suffers. Local channels and sport channels looked worse than standard cable.
    Just my two cents!

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