Stupid questions about Dish Network

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TAsunder
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Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby TAsunder » Tue Dec 02, 2008 4:59 pm

I've finally reached my limit with charter and am switching to Dish Network.

I have some questions about Dish:

1. Do we currently get HD locals via Dish Network? Their web site indicates only Fox is in HD.

2. Will all locals be in HD in february? Sales rep indicated this was true... sounds questionable to me, though. Digital TV is not necessarily the same thing as HDTV. Networks could downsample the content to SD equivalent before sending to dish, couldn't they?

Above two questions are of only minor relevance since I plan to record network TV off an antenna still to free up dual tuners for other channels.

3. What's the status of MPEG4 on Dish? From what I can gather, MPEG4 is the sole format of the "Eastern Arc" Dish array, and any NEW customers getting HD will be put on the Eastern ARC cluster. Existing customers will be put on the Eastern ARC only in select areas...????

4. Can Satellite installers hook the dish lines into my existing cable lines outside or are those the property of charter? I'm not even sure this is possible but I thought they could combine the 3-4 signals into one coaxial line and then split it off later.

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby Shipley » Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:31 pm

1- ABCCBSNBCFOXCWPBS all have HD feeds carried by Dish. on the site only fox says "in HD!" but each station has 2 feeds going to the satellite, one for SD and one for HD.

2- NO. they'll all be viewable in HD when you have an HD box and the program is brodcast in HD, but otherwise those judge shows in the middle of the day will remain in 480.

3- i dunno lol

4- any line inside your home or on your property is yours. It would cost charter more to come rip it out than to just let you keep it.

Full disclosure: I have access to dish internal documnets as a business partner.

TAsunder
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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby TAsunder » Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:46 pm

Thanks.

#4 was about outdoor wiring and the boxes attached to my apartment.

#1 so I will get HD content in HD with an HD receiver even though it only lists fox on the site??

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby tomr » Wed Dec 03, 2008 12:06 pm

I've had Dish for a while, and a year ago got the HD box. Love it, BTW. Two weeks ago I had them point the dish to get the locals in HD, but right now, they only have 47 available. The installer said the others will follow in February. I'm happy with that, because I can get the other locals in HD off the air, but not 47.

One of the HD channels carries a program called Sunrise Earth, which is an hour of just watching a sunrise somewhere on the planet. Extremly cool.

-Tom

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby TAsunder » Wed Dec 03, 2008 12:44 pm

Thanks tomr. Looks like there will be a separate wire of some sort to my receiver, and then my receiver will have an output to the regular internal cable wiring so that my bedroom can use the "TV2" output of my 722 unit. Cool... that and the record three things at once are the two things this unit has over Tivo.

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby mrak » Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:55 am

A well-timed news story for this thread, from CapTimes.com:

DISH launches NBC15 in HD
DISH spokesman Parker Mcconachie said in an e-mail to The Capital Times on Wednesday that the NBC15 launch would be Thursday at the latest.

Mcconachie said there was no time frame available for DISH launching the other local broadcast stations in HD, although DISH announced this summer that the stations would be launched this year.

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby boston_jeff » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:32 am

Prediction:

In a few months this forum starts seeing posts about how much Dish network sucks and how their customer service/tech people are incompetent. Cable blows sometimes, but I have heard just as many complaints about dish service.

As a bonus, you will be giving your money to Rupert Murdoch (not surprising Fox is the HD channel advertised). I will stream TV over the internet before I install a dish from that megalomaniacal monopolist.

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby Fat.The.Gangster » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:49 am

Any thoughts on the pros and cons of Dish Network vs. Direct TV?

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby tomr » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:55 am

Fat.The.Gangster wrote:Any thoughts on the pros and cons of Dish Network vs. Direct TV?


All I can say is that I like Dish; it's cheap, and the HD DVR is fantastic. From what I've heard, Directtv is better for sports packages.

I wish I knew more about the future of Dish, though. I've read about problems they are having with bundling phone, internet, and satellite packages. Unfortunately, I'm a bit too dim to understand it.

-Tom

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby AaronTheSnob » Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:04 am

boston_jeff wrote:Prediction:

In a few months this forum starts seeing posts about how much Dish network sucks and how their customer service/tech people are incompetent. Cable blows sometimes, but I have heard just as many complaints about dish service.

As a bonus, you will be giving your money to Rupert Murdoch (not surprising Fox is the HD channel advertised). I will stream TV over the internet before I install a dish from that megalomaniacal monopolist.


I agree with you abut Murdoch, but I must say, I've had Dish for about a year and a half now and have had absolutely no complaints at all. The worst thing that has happened is that the DVR went kaplooey and I had to call them and request a new one. I got it in two days, and they sent along a return address sticker, so returning the bad one didn't cost me a thing.
Service has been so outstanding that I have often referred to Dish on this site as one of the best customer service experiences I have had. Up to now, that remains the case.

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby boston_jeff » Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:15 am

That's good, I don't wish a bad experience on anybody. I have strong feelings about Murdoch in general, but as a sports fan I will never sign up for a dish on pure principle. What they did (and the govt allowed them to do) to monopolize NFL and MLB games is disgusting. But not surprising.

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby TAsunder » Thu Dec 04, 2008 1:31 pm

Thanks mrak! NBC 15 is the one channel I don't get perfect signal strength from over antenna.

Fat G, DirecTV has FX and a few other fox related channels in HD. Also, they have all locals in HD for the most part, and I believe their service is 100% MPEG4 but don't quote me on that.

About FX: Fox has an ongoing dispute with Dish because they are trying to strong arm dish into carrying more channels than they want in HD. FX HD is the one thing I will envy going to Dish. I chose dish because of the superior DVR and slightly cheaper service when bundled with other things. I've had DirecTV before and liked it a lot, though.

Jeff, there is no way I will ever have as many issues with dish as I had with Charter. I know not everyone has this problem but they are literally the worst company with which I've ever done business, and I'm including a dvd site that sold illegally pirated copies of movies and claimed they were legit that I had to dispute the charge before they accepted a return for a full refund. It only took me this long to send them to the curb because I really love my Tivo S3 and it won't work with Dish or DirecTV.

I've had DirecTV and thought their customer service was excellent at the time (3-4 years ago). So far Dish has been great as well in my limited dealings before installing. They have been honest about what packages I should have and upgraded my DVR at no cost and have not pushed me for additional services. So far they are better than Charter in that regard.

Here's the laundry list of Charter issues I've had:

1. Frequently incompetent techs. Some are great, but many are terrible.

A. Had signal quality problems on my TV and it took 2 techs. First tech flat out denied that it could be the box and spent 2 hours at my place to no avail. Second tech installed a new box within 2 minutes and fixed it. That guy was good, at least.

B. At a new place, it took 4 tech visits and 2 months to get cable. First guy was ok in that he noted that the job would take a lot longer than he expected because wires were not hooked up properly in the basement (even though Charter hooked them up) so I had to schedule another. Second guy wasted an hour of time because he forgot his toolbox. He called in a third guy who had his tools, but that guy couldn't figure out how to get to state street. Fourth guy was the one who actually brought the equipment and he couldn't figure out how cable cards worked at first.

C. Had to call a few weeks back because all of my channels were incorrect. I talked to two techs and neither of them knew that the channel lineup had changed, nor had I received any mailings or information that this was the case. Fortunately my Tivo sent me a message about it the next day, and the day after I got a letter in the mail saying my lineup had changed.


2. Incompetent billing

A. I once canceled service because I was moving. I was on auto-pay at the time. They told me I didn't need to return anything. 6 months later I was contacted by a credit agency because I owed $50 for a cable modem that I was told I was supposed to keep. I had to visit the local office three times to get the charge removed.

B. Once set up at my new place a few months ago, it took 5 phone calls to get my bill straightened out. Literally 5 phone calls, all to get the same rate I was promised to keep from my old place.

C. Online website is almost guaranteed to have an incorrect amount if there is any adjustment. Since July it has been correct only once.

D. Online web site actually showed my account information to a random person in the southeast. I called to complain and they said it was fixed, but offered no compensation for the fact that my personal information was revealed to another customer.

E. Took 3 phone calls to convince charter that my old place on state street even existed. Turns out that they had xxx 1/2 instead of xxx as my address and the first two operators had no idea and insisted it was a business district with no cable service.

3. Unethical business practices.

A. Legally they are required to compensate people who ask for it if there is an outage over a certain length of time. However, they try to avoid this by having the phone system say repeatedly that "there are outages in your area" and that people are already working on it. For a while, this was the message it said every time I called (which was often, see 1B above).

B. Techs often show up slightly late then make you sign something indicating they were on time. The only way to get the $20 discount in this case is to call when they are late and haven't yet shown up

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby Ed Breakfast » Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:27 am

I'm guessing all providers use an MPEG-4 variant for delivery (especially for HD content), whether it's H.264 or Windows Media or otherwise.

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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby Average Joe » Fri Dec 05, 2008 8:07 am

boston_jeff wrote:Prediction:

In a few months this forum starts seeing posts about how much Dish network sucks and how their customer service/tech people are incompetent. Cable blows sometimes, but I have heard just as many complaints about dish service.

As a bonus, you will be giving your money to Rupert Murdoch (not surprising Fox is the HD channel advertised). I will stream TV over the internet before I install a dish from that megalomaniacal monopolist.


Rupert Murdoch does not own Dish Network. He used to own Direct TV.


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Re: Stupid questions about Dish Network

Postby TAsunder » Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:44 am

Ed Breakfast wrote:I'm guessing all providers use an MPEG-4 variant for delivery (especially for HD content), whether it's H.264 or Windows Media or otherwise.


MPEG-4 is a relatively recent thing for both dish services. Many dish customers are still on MPEG-2 service. They are rolling out MPEG-4 to existing customers in a market-by-market basis.


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