Which HD (OTA+Dish) to get?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Bill Slack, Oct 9, 2001.

  1. Bill Slack

    Bill Slack Supporting Actor

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    I've got a Toshiba TW40X81. Now I want to get an HD Tuner... I would like a setup with both the box + dish, and cheaper is always better.
    DirecTV is my preference because of HDnet, unless someone can convince me otherwise.
    I'm not really sure where to look for HT hardware on the 'net, so please point me in the right direction.
    I remember many months ago the Dish 6000 (I know, not DirecTV) was availible with the OTA module + dish for ~$400, are there any deals that good, these days?
    BTW, I am a new subscriber, so discounts along those lines are right up my alley.
    [Edited last by Bill Slack on October 09, 2001 at 03:04 PM]
     
  2. SteveMc

    SteveMc Stunt Coordinator

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    Bill, i am in the some boat. I have had a HDTV for almost 6 months, now that HDnet is airing 65(ish) NHL games this year I am starting to look. From what I have heard, the RCA DTC100 is a popular module. It has a satellit connection as well as antenna connections for OTA signals. Some people have found great deals on them at their local Best buys or CCs, but retail is about $550 right now just for the receiver. I looked around at www.americansatellite.com and they have it with a dual LNB eliptical dish, and self install kit for $550 (includes shipping). That sounds like a deal to me since most of the prices i have seen were for the box only. Also check out the HDTV forums at AVSforum, they have a lot of good HDTV talk over there.
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  3. Bill Slack

    Bill Slack Supporting Actor

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    Hi Steve, the only problem with that is it's the DTC-100... Which is kinda old (though that is not necessarily a bad things), and it only outputs RGB and not component, so I would need a converter ($100 or so) in order to use it...
    I would gladly pay $550 for the full setup though. [​IMG]
     
  4. Matt_Stevens

    Matt_Stevens Supporting Actor

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    DISH 6000 for $9 a month, Top 30. Cannot go wrong and non-HD content will look better than DirecTV's signal, which is overly compressed.
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  5. eric_thr

    eric_thr Extra

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    I got the Toshiba DST 3000 HD receiver from www.minidishes.tv I believe they had systems, DST3000 and elliptical dish, for about $650 with free professional installation. Not a bad deal.
     
  6. Bill Slack

    Bill Slack Supporting Actor

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    Hmm.. Looks like I can get the Tosh setup for $550 if I forgo the installation (my landlord will, in fact, insists, on installing the dish for me...)
    What about the Dish 6000? $9/mo, for programming, I assume... what about the Dish 6000 system itself? I looked at Dish Depot and didn't see any great deals there...
     
  7. TomRS4

    TomRS4 Stunt Coordinator

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    I have the Dish 6000 with 8VSB module for HD. The problem with the 8VSB is fan noise, which is running whenever the unit is plugged in. Dish's technical department has told me two different things: 1) It is a normal function of the unit, nothing is wrong. 2) They are aware of the problem and their engineers are working to solve it. I prefer Dish over DirectTV, so I'm living with the problem.
    DirectTV has more options to choose from as far as receivers go, but some of these also have fan noise problems. If you decided DirectTV is the route you want to go, check into the different HD receivers to make sure you don't get one with a noisy fan.
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  8. Juan_R

    Juan_R Supporting Actor

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    If you want HDNET then Direct TV is the only way to go. Dish does not have it. Good luck on what every you decide.
     
  9. Bill Slack

    Bill Slack Supporting Actor

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    Anyone have any experience pointing the dish themselves? I've setup an 18" dish on my own before (inside, nonetheless!)... Is the new oval dish harder to point, as it has to be pointed at the two sats? Or is it pretty much the same thing?
    I'm leaving towards the Toshiba from MiniDishes.tv right now. About ready to pull the trigger... just trying to decide if I should forgo the pro-installation all-together, or if I'd need their help.
     
  10. RoyGBiv

    RoyGBiv Stunt Coordinator

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    Bill:
    There is a tremendous amount of info at www.avsforum.com in the HD hardware section. There is currently a thread about the Toshiba unit costing $429 at a place in California. That doesn't include the satellite dish, though, so $550 with it would be a good price. You should also search for info about dish aiming as well.
    As far as aiming the elliptical dish, it is definitely harder than the round one. First, it is ultra important that the mounting pole be plumb in every direction. Second, you have to set the tilt in addition to the azimuth and elevation. The coordinates will be available from the receiver when you input your zip code.
    I put up my elliptical dish last year. I already had put up a round antenna myself about 5 years ago. That was a snap. With the elliptical antenna it took much longer to get a decent signal on the 101 satellite, then took a lot of tweaking to get an acceptable signal on the 119 satellite. Since the deal I got also included free installation, I decided to have them come out just to see if they could do a better job pointing it. After two hours with the guy adjusting it while I sat in front of the TV giving him the signal strength numbers, we were no better off. These are the signals I have: for 101 about mid 80s to mid 90s; for 119 about high 50s to 70. Actually, it turns out that with these numbers I have had great reception with rain fade only under severe conditions. If you put up the round dish without problems and are willing to spend time tweaking the elliptical one yourself, I am not sure you need "professional" installation.
    Good luck. I know you'll enjoy the picture however you get there.
    SMK
     
  11. RoyGBiv

    RoyGBiv Stunt Coordinator

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    Bill:
    One additional comment about pointing. Make sure you have a clear path to BOTH satellites. A lot of people ran into trouble with getting the 119 satellite because they assumed if their old antenna could see 101 that they would get 119. There is a significant difference between the two. Obviously, there is 18 degrees of arc, but 119 is also much lower in the sky (the reason for the tilt). Look carefully at the sky from the site you want to use. There is a site on the web which will tell you exactly where to look for both satellites, even giving references to stars or the moon at certain dates and times of the evening for positioning. I don't remember this site, but again at avsforum you can search for that, too.
    SMK
     
  12. Bill Slack

    Bill Slack Supporting Actor

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    The position where I (think) I need to point the dish appears to be very clear (the clearest view my apartment would have...).
    I ordered the Toshiba setup from MiniDishes.tv yesterday... still waiting for them to call me back about payment though! Geez, now I need to find stupid switch box for DVD/Iscan/HDTV... The best I've found is $180 for a 2x1 auto switch. [​IMG]
     
  13. Brett G

    Brett G Stunt Coordinator

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    Just a word a caution re: pointing an elliptical dish. I recently installed one for my DTC-100.
    I first used the coordinates from DirecTV's website (Azimuth: 138, Elevation: 46, didn't mention tilt). I could never get any signal with these values. So then I used my SAT-T60 (DirecTivo combo) to get values. It gave the same values but also gave a tilt of 100. Great! With these I was able to get one satellite or the other, but never both at the same time. Finally I went to RCA's website and got values from them. They gave me Azimuth: 152.5, Elevation 49.8, Tilt 101.3. Obviously these are much different from the values earlier. With these new values, pointing was rather easy and I was able to get strong signals from both satellites.
    This situation probably could have been avoided had I used the DTC-100 to get the coordinates in the first place. I just didn't expect DirecTV's own values to be so off (their website doesn't distinguish between round/elliptical dishes). Bottom line: get your pointing values from your HD receiver or from RCA's website.
    Other than that, I've loved my DTC-100. HDNet is so lovely. Hockey games look amazing.
    -Brett
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  14. Michael D. Bunting

    Michael D. Bunting Screenwriter

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    I will be purchasing a Toshiba 57HX81 in about 1 month.
    I also plan on purchasing an HD set top box to receive HD programming from DIRECTV.
    I currently have a Sony SAT-T60 DIRECTV Satelite Receiver w/ TiVo service.
    My question: Is it possible to simultaneously connect my current SAT-T60 w/ TiVo and also a HD DIRECTV Receiver to the Toshiba 57HX81, allowing for HD programming being viewed on the HD receiver and also allowing regular DIRECTV programming to be viewd via the Sony SAT-T60 w/ Tivo?
    I want to keep the TiVo - as It really comes in handy for keeping my favorite shows as season passes - because I work lots of strange shifts and usually miss most of them live.
    But I am unsure if I can go about with this sort of connection. Can anyone advise me?
    If I can't - I'll probably hold off on purchasing the HD receiver and just stick with the Sony SAT-T60 w/ TiVo.
    Thnaks for any help!
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  15. Brett G

    Brett G Stunt Coordinator

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    Michael,
    The 57HX81 has two sets of HD inputs as well as three sets of regular A/V inputs (two in back and one in front). You can have both a HD receiver connected to one of the HD inputs, and the SAT-T60 connected to one of the S-video inputs. I don't believe you can do Picture-In-Picture with a HD source (at least I can't on my 65H80), but you can easily have them connected at the same time. All you have to do is push the input button on your TV remote to switch between the two.
    You could also have a PS DVD player and two other S-Video devices connected all at the same time. It's very easy.
    -Brett
     
  16. Brett G

    Brett G Stunt Coordinator

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    Michael,
    I'm not sure if my last post was really what you were asking about. If you are concerned about your DirecTV signal, then here's the deal: You'll need an elliptical dish to receive HD programming. This dish will have a 4x4 multiswitch that can output up to four different coaxial lines for DirecTV. If you are using both tuners of you SAT-T60, then you'll need a total of three coaxial lines running from the multiswitch (which is usually on the back of your elliptical dish) to your equipment. Once you run three lines, then you can connect two to your SAT-T60 and the third to your HD receiver. DirecTV will charge you an extra $5/month for the second receiver. You will still need an antenna for OTA HD.
    So yes. Whatever your original question pertained to, you can have both at the same time no problem.
    -Brett
     
  17. Jason Price

    Jason Price Second Unit

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    I've also been looking into picking up a HD receiver (DTC100, if I can find one cheap) and plan to keep my DirectTiVo (Sony SAT T-60) for SD viewing and using the HD receiver only for high def viewing. Instead of running 3 coax lines for the 2 receivers, would it be possible to just split one of the cables and run one into the SD and one into the HD? I believe this would lead to the HD receiver and one of the SD tuners to always be on the same channel, but if that's not a problem, would that work? I hope you can understand what I'm trying to say, I know I'm not explaining it very well... [​IMG]
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  18. Brett G

    Brett G Stunt Coordinator

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    Jason,
    I'm not sure of the implications of splitting one of the lines from a multiswitch. I know for sure that they won't both work at the same time. You would probably need some sort of A/B switch to select which line you want active. Without a switch you will probably have to completely turn off one of your devices. Since your SAT-T60 is always on, and always tuned to something on both tuners, I don't think even the switch will help you, unless you just want to take away one of the signals from it. Keep in mind that if your SAT-T60 loses signal into one of it's tuners, it will not record anything. You would have to go into setup and tell it to only use one tuner.
    So I think you could possible use a switch, but you can't have more than two active lines at a time. Since your SAT-T60 always uses two signals, there must be a compromise. I say run the third line and get rid of many headaches.
    -Brett
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  19. RoyGBiv

    RoyGBiv Stunt Coordinator

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    Jason:
    You cannot split one of the lines going to the receivers with a standard splitter that you might buy at Radio Shack. Even if the two receivers would be tuned to the same station, they wouldn't always be on and tuned to the station at the exactly the same time and would send "competing" polarity signals up to the satellite. I tried doing this once a long time ago and realized very quickly that no matter how I did the connections or tried tuning the receivers, half the satllite signals always disappeared.
    The multiswitch from the elliptical antenna has four outputs. Even though it's a pain, run another coaxial cable from the multiswitch so each receiver has its own separate input.
    SMK
     

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