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Old 02-01-2005, 10:54 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Cable vs satellite

The O'Rights household is seriously considering switching from our crappy assed cable provider to satellite. What are the advantages and disadvantages of satellite vs cable tv? Are the any major differences between Directv and DishNetwork?
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Old 02-01-2005, 11:10 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Well I have Cox digital cable which is sort of like satalite but through a cable line. Digital cable is saweet. We get tons and tons of channels, and if you get HBO for example, you'll get HBO2, HBO comedy, HBO west etc... and we now get an InDemand channel which has lots of movie to select from, some you have to pay for like pay per view, some of them are hbo and cinemax movies and if you get those channels already then you can view the movies for free. So at any given time of the day, I can probably watch 100 or so movies from start to finish, with the ability to rewind, FF, pause, and stop the movie. And thats without the normal movie channels we already get.
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Old 02-01-2005, 11:37 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Location: Colorado
I've never lived anywhere where cable was an option, but I've had both Dish and DirecTV. I thought DirecTV had a slightly better picture & signal and the absolute worst customer service. It took me months to get the billing straight when I moved. Dish offered local channels for my location, where DirecTV did not, so I switched. Very good customer service.

It will probably come down to the programing packages that each offers and what you want.
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Old 02-01-2005, 11:48 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I had sat. tv once. When we got big storms in the line of sight to the sattelite the reception was crappy.
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Old 02-01-2005, 12:03 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Being in the home-theater buisness, I find that most people are much happier with Sattelite... but god damn the DirecTV customer service department, we're a dealer and I'm still on hold for upwards of a half hour every time I call.
 
Old 02-01-2005, 12:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Location: Lilburn, Ga
I ditched cable 8 years ago....I went with primestar which was bought out by DirecTv...I kept them a total of two months after the buy out....I lost channels that I'd had with primestar and had to pay for some channels I hadnt had to pay for before and the customer service was HORRIBLE.....let me repeat HORRIBLE.

I switched to Dish and havent had one single complaint since. I got all the channels back I'd had with primestar (and the ones Direct charged for Dish didnt) and have more channels than one person needs. And their customer service has never once made me cuss.

It is extremely rare to lose the signal, for example, during last weekends ice storm we didnt lose it once. Its got to be raining really really really (and did I mention really) hard for our signal to go out.
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Old 02-01-2005, 12:13 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Location: left side of my couch, East Texas
I have Directv. I had it in my old place, as well.
I get better reception here, for some reason. It's been raining a lot here lately and I've had no interference whatsoever, whereas at the other place it would go blank, in and out, in partly-cloudy weather.
It just depends on where you're located, I suppose.
We get local channels for an extra $1.99 a month. It's pretty nice, now that I get to watch the local news without all the snow.

I've heard that the Dish Network's menu is all fucked up and you can't navigate your way around it easily. Since I've never had it though, you can take it with a grain of salt.
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Old 02-01-2005, 12:18 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Location: Midway, KY
The choice for me comes down to cable internet. I can't really justify the switch to satellite since I also have my internet through the same company. And now, thanks to Vonage, my phone is through the same line. I cancelled my phone line last month. But it does lock me into staying with cable.

If I had my choice I would switch to C-band satellite for pure selection and price though. All the analog channels, digital channels, wild-feeds, xxx (if you want it), international programming.
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Old 02-01-2005, 12:24 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Location: Scottsdale, AZ
we used to have cox...but their crappy customer service/reception/channels got old. so we switched.

right now we've got Qwest VDSL. its like cable, but comes through the phone lines. they also take care of our DSL service in a package with the VDSL.

the picture itself is amazing...MUCH better than cable IMO.
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Old 02-01-2005, 12:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Location: The Wild Wild West
I've had Dish for several years now and love it.

Switched to cable about six months ago because of a good deal and canceled it in two days.

The best feature for me is the guide: very easy to use, easy to search, plus there is an option to have the TV pivture in the upper-right so you can browse around during commericals and not miss the show.

I bought the DVR a year ago and can't live without it. It just enhanced an already great experience.

And, yes, customer service is great.
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Old 02-01-2005, 01:31 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Satellite - because it's easy to steal.
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Old 02-01-2005, 01:48 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Digital Cable... I don't have sat myself but some of my friends do and it is always crapping out during storms or especially cloudy days...
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Old 02-01-2005, 02:15 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I'm happy with my digital cable. The program guide kicks ass, the picture is always perfect, and price is fine with me. We also have cable internet and would use their phone service if it were available to us.
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Old 02-01-2005, 03:00 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Location: Rhode Island biatches!
the digital cable at my house works fine, didn't even lose any picture quality during the recent blizzard that struck the northeast. The customer service is fine for us as well, and the InDemand channel is the best thing to happen to cable since...um...since pay per view *shrug*
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Old 02-01-2005, 03:14 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stompy
Satellite - because it's easy to steal.
huh? can we have more ifo please?
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Old 02-01-2005, 04:19 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I have had Dish for about 4 years after I got royally pissed at the cable company. For the most part I am very pleased. Like ShaniFaye, I had trouble with the recent freezing rain, but I frequently loose the signal when it rains hard. I don't live that far from her (compared to others on the TFP) so I don't know what the difference is. I did lean a ladder on the house and climb up on Saturday afternoon. I could just barely reach the dish with a broom handle and knocking off all the ice I could did not help. I was not about to actually climb onto the ice coated roof to do a better job. I may be stupid, but I am not THAT stupid.

Their customer service is very friendly and the hold time is not unreasonable. When you make a change in your programing it happens while you are still on hold. I love the onscreen program guide and use the digital recorder which is like TiVo. The new one will hold aobut 100 hours on the hard drive. I am not yet ready to upgrade to one with dual tuners so I have to change rooms if I want to see something while I record something else. But I love being able to rewind live TV. It is great if the phone rings or you want to see a replay.
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Old 02-01-2005, 05:58 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Location: Newport Beach, CA
I have been using Dishnetwork for about a year, and am very pleased with it so far. I never get any signal interference, but I also live in southern california where it never snows and rarely rains. I love the DVR(Tivo) feature, I don't ever watch live TV anymore except sporting events. My brother has digital cable from Comcast, and both satellite and digital cable are very similar in quality and features, both come with local channels in all of the packages here also. The biggest difference, in my area at least, is the price. Digital cable is about $20 more a month than satellite for similar packages.
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Old 02-01-2005, 10:31 PM   #18 (permalink)
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This may be a little off topic but I dumped my cable tv and haven't looked back since. I found that there is too much shit on tv these days. With all the reality crap and cop dramas, we're trying to do something better with out time.

Mabye take a brak for a while, see how it works for you.
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Old 02-02-2005, 05:29 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kutulu
I'm happy with my digital cable. The program guide kicks ass, the picture is always perfect, and price is fine with me. We also have cable internet and would use their phone service if it were available to us.
You don't neccesarily need to be offered phone service through your cable company to be able to use voice over IP service. I use Vonage and have been really pleased with them. $24.99/month gets me phone service with all the bells and whistles including unlimited long distance to US and Canada. I was paying $34+/month to Alltel just to have a phone with a dialtone, so it was a no-brainer for me. They also have a promotion where referred new customers get a month of service free. Let me see if I can dig up a link...

Yeah, it isn't linkable. I have to originate an email from them to you. PM me if you are interested and I will put in your email address for more info from Vonage.

Apologies for the threadjack...
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Old 02-02-2005, 06:36 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I suprised you didn't do a seach. There is a thread on this subject already.
Hacking Dishnet is easy, so they get my nod.

http://www.tfproject.org/tfp/showthread.php?t=70676
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Old 02-02-2005, 02:49 PM   #21 (permalink)
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we had dish for a while, i hated it. the signal sucked in bad weather, nothing like watching a movie and when you get to an important part, service goes out just long enough for you to miss it. this was happening to us all the time so we went to digital cable (had regular cable before).

the guide for dish was really nice, but my digital cable offers the same guide so *shrugs* that doesn't make much difference these days.
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Old 02-02-2005, 09:14 PM   #22 (permalink)
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I was a delighted Dish customer for a little over 2 years.

I moved around the first of the year and am stuck with Cox cable for the time being. My landlord is having the roof redone and doesn't want me to put a satellite dish on it, yet. Cable is alright, but I'm paying more a month for what seems like less. Not to mention the fact that Cox, at least in my area, doesn't carry FOX Sports Midwest and with baseball season starting up pretty soon that sucks. Some of the channels are problematic (bad picture et cetera) and it seems like they're working on it all the time as I'm subject to periodic blackouts of certain blocks of channels. My phone company takes care of my internet, so, there's no hassle, however, I can see how that might be a problem for some.

I've had Primestar, DirecTV, DISH and now cable and I have to say DISH has the superior product. Great customer service and I believe they're running a special on multiple room installation and DVR. Suffice it to say that in a few months, I'll be switching back to DISH. I've never really had a problem with signal strength. Right before heavy thunderstorms it would occasionally cut out, but only for a few moments. Ice could concievably be a problem, but as long as you have a clear line of sight they can install it just about anywhere. I installed one myself right off my front porch. And the guide isn't all that clumsy, it's just a new system to learn, no different than DirecTV or digital cable.
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Old 02-02-2005, 10:34 PM   #23 (permalink)
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I just went through this whole debate with my wife. I sat down and compared all the channels I currently get with digital cable to the different packages of Dish Network. I wanted to switch to Dish. I was somewhat surprised to see that I actually got more channels with Digital Cable. I also have the HD package and I get all the locals in HD along with several others including Showtime HD. I did some rearranging of what I was getting from cable and ended up paying less than the Dish price and still having more channels.

Of course, I had to listen to the "I told you so's" from the wife!!!! I would suggest that you get the channel listings from both sources and do a comparison. Don't forget the extra cost for each room with satellite although I think Dish isn't charging that right now.
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Old 02-03-2005, 04:35 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Location: Wish I was on the N17...
I switched from Adelphia (Ass-Smell-Fer-Ya) Cable to Dishnetwork and so far I'm very pleased with this move. It's been over 6 months now and the service is much more reliable plus I was able to find a new high speed internet provider. AssSmellFerYa's high speed I-net sucked. They filtered a bunch of tcp ports that prevented me from being able to work from home.

Bottom line for me : Dishnetwork is so far so good. Plus -- they added Sirius chanels to their line up which has given me the ability to have that music throughout the whole house.
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Old 02-04-2005, 04:26 AM   #25 (permalink)
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OH man I love having sirius, sometimes we just sit there and flip thru them all one at a time listening to all the different stuff and acting goofy with channels like the salsa and zydeco one hehehe
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Old 02-04-2005, 04:40 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill O'Rights
What are the advantages and disadvantages of satellite vs cable tv?
My parents have had DirecTV since the mid-90s (when USSB was still around), and I would have to say that we love it. The only disadvantage I can think of is that sometimes it takes a couple of seconds for a channel to come in.

On the other hand, I have honestly never seen cable look anywhere near as good as satellite (the reason being wires distort things, whereas with satellite it's either full quality or not there at all [usually the former]).
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Old 02-04-2005, 05:28 PM   #27 (permalink)
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I've had Dish network for about 6 months now, no problems at all! Well, getting it installed in my new house, but that's not their problem. Have not lost a signal once. I think it was fuzzy for about 10 seconds during a storm, but other than that, it's been great. I'll never go back to cable.
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Old 02-04-2005, 05:35 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Location: Moscow on the Ohio
I have DirecTV for television and Direcway for broadband internet. I live out in the country and there is no cable or DSL out here. The satellite dish is a bit larger than the one used just for TV because of the internet connection. The TV reception is excellent but the internet broadband is not as good as cable.

I live in an area that gets a lot of snow and ice and sometimes I have to clean off the dish (I use a hose), so if you are considering this, try to locate your dish where it is easy to get to. Also once or twice a year I have lost reception due to large thunderstorms. This usually only lasts for 10 minutes or so.
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Old 02-04-2005, 10:08 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Location: Lex Vegas
Quote:
Originally Posted by flstf
the internet broadband is not as good as cable.
There is a reason for this. The satellite's uplink speed is extremely low (around 1 k/s), whereas the downlink is extremely fast (around 1000 k/s). Therefore, it's broadband/high speed, but not that fast.
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Old 02-05-2005, 06:49 PM   #30 (permalink)
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I love TIVO but i also love ondemand, its hard to decide. If your cable company sux definitely go with sat.
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Old 02-05-2005, 08:39 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Location: left side of my couch, East Texas
Quote:
Originally Posted by flstf
I have DirecTV for television and Direcway for broadband internet. I live out in the country and there is no cable or DSL out here. The satellite dish is a bit larger than the one used just for TV because of the internet connection. The TV reception is excellent but the internet broadband is not as good as cable.
How is it compared to dialup, though?
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Old 02-06-2005, 05:34 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Location: Moscow on the Ohio
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Originally Posted by Fremen
How is it compared to dialup, though?
Browsing and downloading are much much faster. Uploading is faster as well but not nearly as fast as downloading, still better than dialup.

My biggest complaint is something they call FAP (fair access policy). After downloading about 180 MB in less than an hour or so, they throttle your speed way back for a few hours. You can still browse fast during this time but can't download any large files at high speed for a while. As I understand it most satellite companies have similar policies. Something to do with the nature of these systems.

Still, I could never go back to dialup.
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