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StarChoice HDTV? Buy now or wait?

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by James Bergeron, Jun 12, 2003.

  1. James Bergeron

    James Bergeron Supporting Actor

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    Ok, I have StarChoice right now, and have been thinking about buying the HD Receiver to finally get HDTV.

    For those that have it, if you were in my shoes would you buy now, or wait for new programming. Or maybe wait for the PVR?

    As far as the PVR goes, it sounds awesome PIP, record 1 HDTV program and watch another, but chances are this thing will cost upwards of $1000... maybe $999 and I don't want to spend that kind of $$$ on TV programming.

    I could get the HD receiver now for $389 (The brick) not sure if anyone sells it cheaper. Would it be worth buying now? I wonder if the price will drop dramatically in September when they release the new HD programming (more channels rumoured) and they also release the all in one HD receiver.

    What do you guys think?
     
  2. James Bergeron

    James Bergeron Supporting Actor

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    I assume this got moved from HDTV programming because it was somewhat of a hardware question, but it is also a programming question.

    Is there enough programming to warrant HDTV in Canada? Specifically from Star Choice?

    Thanks
     
  3. JohnnyG

    JohnnyG Screenwriter

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    You have to weigh your options carefully. Right now, Star Choice offers 2 HD channels, Rogers offers 10 and ExpressVu just announced they'll have 15. Star Choice announced plans for up to 6 HD channels by this Fall (IIRC) and Rogers has strongly hinted that they want to maintain the HD lead they've had thus far.
     
  4. James Bergeron

    James Bergeron Supporting Actor

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    Yeah, Star Choice is not really "leading" although from their website they state they have more programming than anybody even though they have less channels. But I have to go starchoice, I already have the dish and I bought the 405 receiver 2 years ago in hopes of going HD in the future. So I'm kind of stuck with these guys.

    Looking at the programming lineup right now, there is NOTHING.

    But I'm wondering what it will be like in september. I watch Survivor religiously! Also it is suppose to have a doubler, which converts regular TV to HD (well to 720p or 1080i I guess), which would be nice, since I'm using a CRT FP and TV looks bad on it with just s-video and no scalling.... of course then I can chuck my $100 s-video cable [​IMG]
     
  5. Daryl Furkalo

    Daryl Furkalo Second Unit

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    I can't speak about Star Choice as I have Bell HD on my CRT FP. HD looks way better than any scaled DVD I own at 720p. On Bell there is east & west USA network feeds for ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, and PBS. Also, City-HD and two PPV-HD and one movie channel. This fall, there are rumours of TSN-HD, which would be some of the ESPN-HD from the US. These are the current channels from the 82 Nimiq satellite right now available. For regular channels, the 6000 does upconvert.
     
  6. Jon Bye

    Jon Bye Stunt Coordinator

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    I had the same question. I asked starchoice and they said that they would have 4 or 6 new channels coming in Sept. They plan to release the integrated hd receiver Model 500 around then and the pvr model 530 sometime in 2004.

    They did not have retail prices and they were not sure if they would offer any upgrade deals for their existing HD customers. I am going to get the HDD201 anyway as it seems to eliminate the chroma bug that I get now with my 401
     
  7. James Bergeron

    James Bergeron Supporting Actor

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    Jon, Croma bug? I might have the 401 now that you just mentioned it.... doh! Is it awefull or just barely noticable?

    Thanks
     
  8. Marc H

    Marc H Second Unit

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    I'm going to wait 'til the fall to see what they offer. There should be a whole slew of PVRs to choose from at that time too which should bring the prices way down.
    That's a great price on the HD receiver at the Brick. I haven't heard of anything cheaper.
     
  9. JohnnyG

    JohnnyG Screenwriter

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    James, I assume your FP is 4:3 and in that case, you can set the HDD-201 (make sure the label on the box says 'GUI') to 4:3 and it'll auto-expand non-HD material and auto-letterbox HD (810i). Everything will indeed be converted to, and output in, either 480p, 720p or 1080i depending on the switch on the back, but the problem is, it does a pretty lousy conversion! The vast majority of owners continue to use S-Video for regular TV viewing, switching inputs on the display to component for HD.
     
  10. Jon Bye

    Jon Bye Stunt Coordinator

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    As for the deal at the Brick, they offer the hdd201 but they only deliver the hdd200. The 200 model is significantly older and I believe that it had some tech issues as well.

    After much haggling they gave me a full refund (no 10% restocking fee)

    The fact that they could not get a HDD201 must be a sign that I should wait for the new receivers in the fall.
     
  11. James Bergeron

    James Bergeron Supporting Actor

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    So how does this thing actually hook up?

    I went to futureshop and looked at a display model. It has a tiny hole that says "high speed data" is this what connects to the 15pin connector on the back of the navigo 401?

    I noticed the HD tuner didn't have any coax out but it did have composite. Can I still use the coax out that is provided on the 401 for my second tv? Currently I have my projector using the s-video and the coax runs upstairs to my other TVs [​IMG]

    The other question I have is the back has a switch "GRB" and "Y Pb Pr" So I'm assuming it should say "RGB" so does this actually convert the component to regular old RGB (sync on green) so I could use this direct in a projector with a VGA breakout cable?

    Thanks.
     
  12. Ron Reda

    Ron Reda Cinematographer

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    A bit off the subject, but I have the opportunity to pick up a HDD201 for $300...is this a good deal? I know not much about HD sat receivers, so any help would be appreciated. I have a 51" Hitachi widescreen with DVI and component inputs as well as a DirecTV HD dish. Another question...is this a DirecTV receiver?
     
  13. Levesque

    Levesque Supporting Actor

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    I use the HDD-201 since almost a year and really like it. BTW, there is now 3 HD channels on Star Choice.

    The programming is not that terrible, but sometimes there is a gem shining through. LOTR FOTR in HD was AWESOME! Had a gathering with friends and they didn't believe the difference from my Denon DVD-3800. We were seeing pimples in the face of Gandalf, and sometimes some make-up mark on some orcs. Shrek was awesome too. My wife was breathless when listening to the US opens in HD. Just stay alert to be there when those gems are passing by.

    I'm really happy to own this HD decoder on those occasion. Really impressive on my big 65 inches 16:9 screen.

    If you have the money do it.
     
  14. Miles

    Miles Second Unit

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    Although there are definately problems with SC's lack of channels compared to EVu, it may be worth it. I've heard there aren't many 201's left to be found. If you don't like it you should at least be able to resell it easily.

    Miles
     

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