PVR options with Dish Network?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Rob Varto, Nov 27, 2002.

  1. Rob Varto

    Rob Varto Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2000
    Messages:
    711
    Likes Received:
    0
    I really want to get a PVR but Im not sure what all my options are. I know I can get prodcuts that Dish offers (501 and 721) but I was wondering if Tivo is strictly proprietary to Direct TV or can it work with Dish as well? Any suggestions from those of you that have Dish and a PVR? Any recommendations where to buy one for a fair price?

    Thanks!!
     
  2. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    Joined:
    May 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi Rob.

    There is a difference between the ANALOG PVR's and the DIGITAL ones.

    The ANALOG PVR's (like Replay, Tivo, Ultimate TV) are just like a VCR. They take a ANALOG signal and convert it to digital for storage & playback. There is a generational-loss issue (the playback will never be as good as the original broadcast).

    The DIGITAL PVR's (like DirectTivo, Dish PVR) record the raw bits coming from the satelite. There is no conversion and the playback is identical to the original broadcast.

    Having the digital PVR's tied to the satelite service is the easiest/best way to go. Putting an ANALOG Tivo unit to record the output of a Dish receiver is going to be ... a pain to use. I dont think the Tivo unit can get the schedule of shows for your dish service with all your options. So you now have to treat it like a 'dumb' VCR. And you have to program your Dish receiver to turn-on for the shows you want to record, and program your ANALOG Tivo to blindly record whatever signal comes out. And the shows: it wont be able to show you the names, titles, etc.

    If you have Dish, go with a PVR solution. If you have Direct TV, go with a DirectTivo unit.

    And if you have Dish, the dual-tuner 721 unit is the way to go. Picture in picture, dual recording capability - you will not regret the purchase.
     
  3. Erich_S

    Erich_S Extra

    Joined:
    May 29, 2000
    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't know about Tivo, but my ReplayTV works great with my Dish Network receiver. The Replay controls the sat receiver through one of those IR emitters and the channel guide is complete (including my locals).

    Although there is a decrease in quality due to the recompression by the replay, it is very easy to use; the Dish receiver stays on all the time and all record scheduling and channel changing is handled through the Replay.

    If I were you, I would check out the DirecTivo and Dish PVRs for ease of setup and increased picture quality, but also try to take a look at a standalone ReplayTV unit for comparison. I really like the ReplayTV interface and after using it for a year and a half, I can't imagine giving it up just to gain a little in the PQ department.

    There are some deals on the recently discontinued 45xx series, though those might be getting hard to find. The new series (50xx?) are just comnig out, but already have a rebate.

    Erich
     
  4. Rob Varto

    Rob Varto Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2000
    Messages:
    711
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for the advice... Im going to stick with the Dish PVR but I have two more questions with regards to it...
    Can I just swap the 721 out with my current set top box? The 721 is basically a stb and a PVR in one, right?

    Also, Im assuming at the price of about $550, there is no monthly fee from Dish, right?

    Again, thanks for the feedback.
     
  5. Rob Varto

    Rob Varto Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2000
    Messages:
    711
    Likes Received:
    0
    Just found the answer to my "monthly fee" question... NO Monthly fees!

    The only drawback I see to the 721 is the fact that it doesn't have HD capability. I have the Model 6000 in my great room hooked to my HDTV. So I guess that the 721 wouldn't be a wise replacement for that... I supposed I'll have to swap the 721 with my basic stb in my bedroom. That kind of stinks. It'd be awesome to watch the recorded programming on the widescreen instead of a 27" basic TV.
     
  6. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2000
    Messages:
    8,288
    Likes Received:
    51
    Location:
    Mississippi
    Real Name:
    Robert
     
  7. Rob Varto

    Rob Varto Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2000
    Messages:
    711
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  8. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2000
    Messages:
    8,288
    Likes Received:
    51
    Location:
    Mississippi
    Real Name:
    Robert
     
  9. Rob Varto

    Rob Varto Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2000
    Messages:
    711
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have a twin LNB and my HD LNB running to an SW-21 switch which then runs to the receivers (one in bedroom and one in great room).

    Will I have to get a Quad LNB and another SW-21 switch for the addition of this 721?
     
  10. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2000
    Messages:
    8,288
    Likes Received:
    51
    Location:
    Mississippi
    Real Name:
    Robert
    You need at least a Quad on the Dish500. Do you want to record standard def channels from the Dish300? Yes-you need a standard 2x4 switch and two more SW21's. No-combine one feed from the Dish300 into the Dish500 and feed that to your 6000.

    -Robert
     
  11. Rob Varto

    Rob Varto Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2000
    Messages:
    711
    Likes Received:
    0
    Robert,

    I don't have the dish 300 (I don't think)... Im not sure what that is.

    Let's see if I got this right:

    Get the Quad LNB and replace the Twin LNB with the quad.
    Run my cable from my HD dish LNB, quad LNB to thru a 2x4 switch with then feeds my Model 500, model 6000 and the 721. So basically, I need to swap the LNB, the switch and then run a whole new cable into the house to connect to the 721.

    For what it's worth, I greatly appreciate you walking me thru this!
     
  12. Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 1999
    Messages:
    1,573
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bob McElfresh wrote:
    There is a difference between the ANALOG PVR's and the DIGITAL ones.

    I object to your terminology -- both main types have digital & analog components. It would be better to classify them as "standalone" and "integrated w/ satellite receiver" models, respectively.

    The ANALOG PVR's (like Replay, Tivo, Ultimate TV) are

    UltimateTV is an integrated satellite model; it doesn't belong in this group.

    Having the digital PVR's tied to the satelite service is the easiest/best way to go.

    This I mostly agree with, but ...

    Putting an ANALOG Tivo unit to record the output of a Dish receiver is going to be ... a pain to use. I dont think the Tivo unit can get the schedule of shows for your dish service with all your options. So you now have to treat it like a 'dumb' VCR. And you have to program your Dish receiver to turn-on for the shows you want to record, and program your ANALOG Tivo to blindly record whatever signal comes out. And the shows: it wont be able to show you the names, titles, etc.

    All of the statements in this block are completely false. Tivo gets guide data for all Dish Network shows; in fact it's probably more complete. It doesn't blindly record, and no programming of the Dish receiver itself is necessary. You leave the Dish receiver on at all times; Tivo will change the channels automatically to the appropriate channel at the appropriate time, using an IR dongle.

    The integrated models get you the best possible video/audio, and in the case of the Dish 721 (not 5xx / earlier models), and the DirecTivo models, dual simultaneous recording. These advantages are enough to make them the best choice for most people.

    Standalone models let you record locals from cable or antenna. This is only an issue if Dish Network doesn't provide local channels where you live. Also, Dish's PVR software is fairly primitive compared to Tivo & Replay. It's more VCR-like in that you tell it to record particular time slots every week / every day. Tivo (& DirecTivo) do more powerful stuff like "record this show whenever it's on, except when conflicting with these higher priority shows, but skip reruns and don't record duplicate episodes". So it's more automated and will catch time slot changes, special longer episodes, special bonus episodes. Also you can get it to automatically record based on keywords / categories / actors / directors etc. These features are all nice, but probably the AV quality & dual tuners would sway me to the Dish 721 if locals were available, and switching to DirecTV wasn't feasible.
     
  13. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2000
    Messages:
    8,288
    Likes Received:
    51
    Location:
    Mississippi
    Real Name:
    Robert
    A Dish300 is just a regular 18" dish.

    You have two tuners in your 721 and one tuner in your 6000, three total. Swap your Twin for a Quad and that will give you four outputs there. The 300 with a dual LNB has only two outputs. Add a 2x4 switch to the 300 to give you four outputs. Combine a coax from the 500 with a coax from the 300 using an SW21. The combined output of the SW21 goes to a tuner. Repeat two more times. With this setup you have a max of 4 tuners. If you ever want more than that, you will need different equipment.

    -Robert
     
  14. Rob Varto

    Rob Varto Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2000
    Messages:
    711
    Likes Received:
    0
    Robert,

    I emailed you separately on this (to keep the thread from becoming a tutorial for me). But Im 99% sure I understand what to do now. The only thing that confuses me is what switch to use. Should I get the SW44 switch? It would allow me to feed both outputs of the 300 to the SW44, break that into (4) signals and then tie each of those (4) with a coax feed from the 500 into an SW-21 switch. Then from the SW21 to my receivers. Is this right? Is the SW44 the one for me?

    Im a little disappointed at how much this is costing. $550 for the 721, $150 for the Quad LNB and another $150 or so for the SW44. I'll try Ebay and keep my fingers crossed.

    Rob V
     

Share This Page