Dish Network PVR

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Chris Hovanic, Jun 4, 2003.

  1. Chris Hovanic

    Chris Hovanic Supporting Actor

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    First Off Great forum idea!

    I have the Dish Network PVR 501, and as Im sure all the tivo and replay owners I am hooked. I watch tv the way I want to watch it. No network exec telling me I can only watch the latest episode of CSI at 9:00pm

    For those that don't have a pvr. Save your dimes and get one. I don't know how many times I have backed up 5 seconds to catch something I missed, or paused what I was watching for a phone call or someone at the door. I can watch a hour network TV show in 40 min. Thats a savings of 20 min. of my time. :d

    I got mine just before my boy was born and I am sure glad I had it. Boy cries.. pause... sooth baby... resume watching.

    Though the Dish Network PVR is no where near what Tivo is it gets the job done. On top of that it only cost me $100.00 upgrade from the standard tuner. I pay $5.00 a month for it but would be paying that anyway for a standard Sat. tuner. No other costs.

    Only two things that I would improve.
    1. A dual tuner version. (Dish has one but its quite spendy right now)
    2. The ability to access the shows recorded from any tuner box in my house. So many times I would love to watch something recorded upstairs.

    I had a couple of problems with mine and did loose about 20 hours of recorded shows. Solution to the problem was to make sure you turn the unit off when you are not watching. When you shut it off it defrags the hard drive and cleans things up (thats what tech support told me). It seems to work because no more problems.

    I am also very happy with the remote that was provided. It will not control my entire system but it is perfect for watching TV.

    Anyone else happy or disappointed with their Dish Network PVR? Has anyone added a larger hard-drive to theirs?
     
  2. DaleBesh

    DaleBesh Stunt Coordinator

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    I am seriously considering it. I have had Dish for several years now, and it's a $200 upgrade, no monthly fees for the PVR upgrade.
    Seriously considering it.
     
  3. Scott Kimball

    Scott Kimball Screenwriter

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    Call Dish, Dale. They frequently have $149 upgrade deals for longtime customers, and they are usually not advertised.

    -Scott
     
  4. JeremySt

    JeremySt Screenwriter

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    I have been a PVR customer for a year, and wasnt aware of any fee. Are you sure?
     
  5. Brian R

    Brian R Stunt Coordinator

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  6. Chris Hovanic

    Chris Hovanic Supporting Actor

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  7. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

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  8. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    I enjoy my PVR501, I have lost programming only once in 2 years of ownership, the UHF remote is also great (no longer have to sit there and point the thing), just wish the remote was backlit.

    Like you, I never thought I'd like the PVR as much as I do now, I thought it was a nice touch but it is great for the ways mentioned here. I practically now PVR all the shows and watch them later skipping through the commercials (Bowflex! and now that Basedow guy).

    Now as to the compression on DN, that's another story, but as with the PVR, they'rrreeee great!

    Jay
     
  9. RAF

    RAF Lead Actor

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    A few PVR comments from an old timer:

    Just to add some additional information regarding the pricing structure of DISH PVRs (I own two units, a 501 and a 721) - yes, as others have correctly stated, the $5/month charge (actually $4.95, I believe) is for the "box" and not a monthly charge for the PVR guide service. (There is no additional monthly charge for DISH PVR service.)

    And those of us who own a 721 (dual tuner model) get a little "bonus." Even through the 721 requires two lines input to accommodate the dual tuner feature (and Picture In Picture as well, BTW) DISH only charges a single $4.95/month for the entire box. I know a couple of folks who actually are now saving $4.95/month with the 721 since they formerly had two dedicated boxes (at $9.90/month) to feed the PIP on their sets. And to anticipate a question - no, the 721 does not have two outputs, but creates the PIP function internally from the two tuners - but the net effect is the same at lower cost for PIP fans. In fact, if your video monitor doesn't have dedicated PIP, it transforms into one with a 721 unit.

    Yes, certain systems have programming advantages over others and they all have their quirks (thus the introduction of this Forum Section) but they all have one thing in common - the ability to pause live shows and go back in time when the phone rings or you are otherwise distracted at a critical point in your viewing. This gives "time shifting" a whole new meaning and when people see this for the first time they are amazed how convenient this makes "live" viewing.

    And since most of the functionality (at least of DISH units and, I'm fairly certain, most other units) is software based and remotely updated with new versions, the features offer by these machines continues to improve as programmers come up with new ways to do some amazing things. One small example: A couple of months ago I turned on my PVR to discover that slo-mo Fast Forward and Reverse had been "added" to my unit. A later version of the software made this possible. I've noticed similar enhancements in the menus and the search function of my PVRs as well.

    Like I told someone in another thread on the forum, ever since I started using my PVRs I have to wipe the dust off my VCR remote whenever I want to use the VCR. VCRs are 20th century. PVRs are 21st century. No tape to change, much more full featured, much better picture, etc. etc. etc.

    To those watching on the "outside" c'mon in! The water's fine.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  10. Chris Hovanic

    Chris Hovanic Supporting Actor

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  11. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    I have both a DishPlayer and PVR 501 and my family just loves it. Of all my HT toys, the PVR is the only thing I have ever heard my wife brag about to her friends.

    I DID just get an extra $100 charge on my Dish Network bill. I called them up and it turns out they are still charging $9.95 per month for DishPlayer recording![​IMG] I took advantage of a $99 for 3 years offer they had a while back and it just expired. The $99 charge was an automatic renewal. I told them to take it off and a few minutes later my DishPlayer lost it's recording ability and the program guide dropped to 2-days.

    Once my move is finished, I may retire the Dishplayer.
     
  12. RAF

    RAF Lead Actor

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  13. Jalil

    Jalil Stunt Coordinator

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    I have the pvr 501 also, have had it for a while and i love it.

    Had issues in the past with it locking up, but not a big deal, and hasn't happened in ages.

    One feature i'm still waiting for is a way to tell the player to turn itself off, after it has already started recording.

    A lot of times, i have shows set to record, and i want the player to turn itself off after its done. So i have to remember to turn it off before the timer goes off. and if i forget.. either i have to leave the player on all night, or stop it, set it to record in 2 minutes, and quickly turn it off.

    otherwise i love my pvr. Can't imagine watching tv without it.
     
  14. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    Been trying to figure out if the 501 will record standard OTA TV (for local channels). Would this require the receiver to have a standard TV tuner? Just need some clarification.
     
  15. Chris Hovanic

    Chris Hovanic Supporting Actor

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  16. JeremySt

    JeremySt Screenwriter

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    They pass OTA signal, but they dont have built in tuners. You cannot record OTA signals. (at least not on the 501, which I have)
     
  17. Scott Kimball

    Scott Kimball Screenwriter

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    To my knowledge, NO satellite-based PVR's offer OTA recording. They record the digital bits direct from the satellite, and don't even have an onboard MPEG encoder. This gives better quality (no re-compression) and keeps the price of the box down, while sacrificing OTA recording capability.

    -Scott
     
  18. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    So what do people do to record OTA content? Output from television or VCR?
     
  19. Scott Kimball

    Scott Kimball Screenwriter

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    The only way to record locals on a satellite PVR (DishPVR or DirecTivo) is to get your local channels via satellite, if your market is available.

    The only other way to use a PVR with locals is to get a standalone model. While these will offer local OTA recording capability, and they can be configured to work with a satellite receiver, you do lose the bit-for-bit recording from the satellite (the signal is converted from digital to analog and back to digital). This will decrease recording quality and capacity. You'll also have to pay the Tivo subscription fees to use a standalone Tivo with DishNetwork.

    Then, there's always the old VCR... that's what I use for OTA recording, until my Portland, Maine locals appear on Dish Network (rumored for 2004).

    -Scott
     
  20. Grady Reid

    Grady Reid Stunt Coordinator

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    I will soon be upgrading to the 508. The standard Dish receiver we have now ISN'T hooked-up to a phone line (we rarely ever watch PPV). Other than to watch PPV or use the caller-id feature, is the 508 REQUIRED to be connected to a phone line?
     

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