Help with equipment delema (long)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Steve Ridges, Jun 18, 2001.

  1. Steve Ridges

    Steve Ridges Stunt Coordinator

    Jul 26, 2000
    Likes Received:
    Ok, up until recently, I've been very happy with all my equipment. I have a dishnetwork receiver and a Tivo along with various other equipment that used to sit on top of my RPTV. Because of other reasons, all of my equipment had to be moved into a cabinet so I purchased an X-10 Powermid IR repeater system so I could operated it all. This is where the problem begins:
    Once inside the cabinet, the Tivo which controls the dish receiver via an IR blaster could no longer change the sat receiver channel. I pin pointed the problem down the the dish sat receiver getting confused by other stray IR signals in the cabinet. If I cover the sat IR window together with the Tivo IR blaster with tinfoil to block out all other IR except for the Tivo blaster, everything works. The problem is that I don't like having tinfoil around all my nice equipment...what to do?
    Option 1:
    I thought of selling my Tivo (with lifetime membership) on eBay for around $450. This would give me more than enough for a new dish PVR501. I would also end up with my original sat receiver that I could use for another TV which I'm planning to set up. The problem with this is that from what I've heard, the 501 is a major step backwards in the software and functionality department. I get the impression that it is just the old dish guide system with the option to record. I'd loose all the cool, colorful, Tivo functionality with season passes and wishlists etc. However, this option costs no $$$.
    Option 2:
    What about DirectTV? I thought I could order DirectTV with the special right now and get free installation and the basic receiver(for my other TV). Then I'd sell my existing Tivo and buy a DirectTV / Tivo combo unit. I'd have the integration I'd want but I'd have to purchase the lifetime Tivo membership again (~$250 depending on how much I get for my original Tivo minus the new unit). This option appears to get me everything I want i.e. Tivo and Sat integration without having to wrap my receiver in tinfoil. I'd also get better picture quality as the combo units record the signal directly.
    Option 3:
    This is pretty much the same as option 2 but involves Ultimate TV. When I went to look at the Sony DirectTV/Tivo units, they had the Sony Ultimate TV as well. My first impression was that the adds were kind of annoying and that the Sony unit was slow to respond. It took 1.5 seconds from the time you pressed guide for the guide to show. Is this typical? What about the RCA Ultimate TV box? It seems that the Ultimate TV is not as refined as the Tivo but the ability to watch one program while recording another is VERY cool. Maybe even cool enough to put up with adds and slow system response however the jury's still out on that one.
    What I'm really looking for is someone who has used Tivo and the Dish PVR501 and can compare the two of them for me. Thanks for reading all of this. Please let me know what you'd do.
  2. Ken Stuart

    Ken Stuart Second Unit

    Jan 31, 2000
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    I would say that everything you have said is true. What you seem to be asking for is someone to decide for you whether you would happier with cake or with ice cream, which, of course, is a decision you can only make for yourself.
    I should add one point of information - that Dish Network is coming out with their own two tuner box that allows you to watch one program while recording another. This is the PVR721 and will be available before the end of the year (the one down side of that unit is that it will consist almost as much as two 501's).
    Another option is that there are still available a few units of Ultimate TV's PVR receiver for Dish Network, called the DishPlayer. The main difference between this and their DirecTV unit is that the DishPlayer only has one tuner.

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