HD receiver ?

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Bry_DD, Dec 6, 2003.

  1. Bry_DD

    Bry_DD Second Unit

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    I'm not sure if this is the right forum to ask this but here goes. Is anyone using hughes E86 fo HDTV? what is your oppinion on this receiver, good and bad? thanks for you input. Bry
     
  2. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

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    Bry,

    Although attractively priced at this time the E-86 is among the worst HD receivers currently available if you have any interest at all in reliable local OTA reception.

    This box was marketed under the Hughes, Toshiba, and Mitsubishi names.

    I used one of the Toshiba branded models for almost 2 years and never got satisfactory local ota reception--very poor rejection of multipath (extraneous signal "bounced" off objects in the line of sight between transmitter and antenna). I was only able to get one local HD channel to work on it, and that one only on an intermittent basis. At times it would go an entire 15-20 minutes between sound dropouts and picture pixellations.

    The box's upconversion of non-hd signals to 1080i was very soft looking, and since it would only output 1080i via component connections one must also run an S video cable to a separate input on the tv for best pic on non-HD material. Very limited stretch/zoom modes also detract from it's usability.

    In addition the E-86 has a tendency to run too hot, as a result it's local ota digital tuner has a tendency to fry and not work at all unless you add a cooling fan, even if the box is located out in the open with totally unobstructed vent opennings. If not kept cool the box will eventually also fry the DirecTV tuning section, though this takes a lot longer and may not happen at all if you keep the thing out in the open.

    It's scanning of local digital stations also is somewhat dependent on guide data, so even if a station is up and running you often won't be able to get the box to tune it unless you go through a tedious chicken dance involving rebooting and changing zip code information followed by a longish reload of guide data in the setup menu, even if your zip is already correct.

    It does produce a very nice HD picture from the available HD satellite channels, but it's poor upconversion and inability to output anything but that upconversion via component makes getting a good SD picture an exercise in button pushing every time you want to watch a non-HD channel.

    I would only recommend this box if you only want your HD from Satellite channels, can keep the box very well ventilated, and don't mind having to switch the boxe's output mode and tv's input every time you want a decent picture on non-HD channels.

    I replaced mine with a Sony HD-200, one of the LG mfg. boxes, last August and the difference in performance is like night and day. All of my local ota HD channels are now rock-solid, the upconversion to 1080i of SD material is quite watchable, and if I choose to I can make it output 480p for SD stuff via component cables, no more switching inputs on the tv.

    The newest Hughes box (silver in color) is a slightly decontented LG model and should perform much better than the E-86.
     
  3. Bry_DD

    Bry_DD Second Unit

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    Thanks steve. Now i'm looking at Dish811. anyone had any experience with this model?
     

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