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Old 05-08-2014, 03:11 PM   #1
aridon
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Directv to Comcast w/ Tivo

Figured I'd share my experience with moving to Comast in SE FL from D*. We've had Replay, Series 2 and the horrendous Premier over the years and also Directv for many years in between.

So I've been with D* for a bit now and love the service for the most part. Recently decided to move and the HOA we are moving into has a bulk deal with Comcast. Checked out the pricing and it works out like this:

30mbs internet and the equivalent to D*'s Ultimate (Essentially everything except HBO, Max, Show and Starz).

Total $67 per month without taxes including HD for everything. Amazing pricing.

Obviously as a bulk account our HOA dues cover a good bit more but that would be a sunk cost regardless of who we are with. Dues work out to $217 a month and include lawn care, pest control, water / sewer, trash pick up, expanded basic cable (75 stations or so), gated / guarded community and the pools / Basket ball / tennis / mini golf etc. Not a bad deal really.

Anyway,

Let me chronicle my experience:

Contact Comcast on April 10th and get the pricing for the new place. Can't really beat the price so we set up our account to start on May 1st.

April 20th contacted D* to cancel. We already had a lot of credits so there wasn't much more they could do. Told them we loved the service and may be back sometime and thanked them for their time.

April 21st, got on Ebay and picked up a code for steep Tivo discount. Purchased Tivo that night w/ lifetime. The Ebay codes are by far the best deals I've seen. Don't hesitate to buy one.

April 23rd, Tivo comes in. Update it to the newest software. Put it back in the box.

May 1st, move to new address. Set up modem for internet and call in to get the MAC address added to the new account. They can't see the modem and I can't sync up to the net. Schedule a tech for May 7th which really pissed me off.

May 7th, Tech shows up. Nice guy. Ran a new drop to the Comcast box. SNR is high so they put a powered amplifier on the line. Net is mediocre at best compared to our old address but its good enough. Only getting 6-15mbs of the advertised 30 but DSL would be crappier (Max of 6mbs @$54) so I'll live with it. I'm currently working with someone from Comcast customer care on this issue.

Tech leaves. I break out the tivo. Hook everything up. Call the cable card dept.

Got some idiot on the phone who tries to enter everything in the system. Tells me that the cable card is listed as a cable box and there is an inventory problem and she couldn't activate the account.

I'm fairly pissed but convince her to pass on the truck roll and try to add the info anyway. She insists it will not work but I insist she tries.

Adds the cable card numbers to the account. Asks me to remove the cable card (MISTAKE) for the serial number. Sends activation signal. Nothing. After a little back and forth I insist she tries again. I reboot the TIVO, tell her to send the signal after its fully booted and WOOHOO TV is up and running.

I thank her for trying my suggestion and she was polite enough to apologize that she didn't want to try in the first place. Hang up the phone.


Comcast vs Diretv:

Picture quality is about a wash. They are both excellent. I have them both up now and for the most part they are identical. Comcast just got done with a huge upgrade in this area last year so I'm not surprised. D* turns off tomorrow and I'm going to disconnect it tonight.

Tivo Roamio vs HR24. No comparison. The roamio is simply faster at everything. The guide shows more and everything is faster. Much less the extra tuners. Tivo still needs to address some of the SD menus but other wise no comparison. D* has the Hr44 which is a nice box but the Roamio is an amazing box. Nothing like the old premiere which IMO was total garbage. If you are on cable then its the only way to go IMO. I wish satellite companies didn't receive a cable card exemption. Tivo got it mostly right with the Roamio they still need to update some of their menus but otherwise solid box for my needs.

Comcast on demand is much better than D*'s. Although Tivo's interface leaves much to be desired.

The guide layout on D* is far superior to Comcast.

Living in SE FL I won't miss the D* rain fade. We'll see if Comcast has any reliability issues as time goes on.

I think D* has better phone support than Comcast. I got many polite but overseas reps with Comcast and there is no comparison between someone answering the phone in India vs Indiana.


Just sharing my experience and I'm sure at some point we will be back with D*. However for now, there is no comparison in what we are getting for the money and I was pleasantly surprised with Comcast's picture quality and the new Tivo's performance. Sure it was a good bit of money out of pocket but I would of had to fork over some $$ for a HR44 for D* and I like having the option to buy lifetime on the Tivo and not get nickled and dimed to death monthly for years and years.

D* has been good to us and I'm sure at some point we will be customers again. Until then we will be happy with the Roamio on Comcast.
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Old 05-08-2014, 06:18 PM   #2
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Interesting experience a couple of points:

1. Comcast heavily compresses their HD channels. They have gotten better at tri-muxing, but the picture qualtiy still isn't very good. Although it varies channel to channel, the pecking order is generation FIOS > DirecTV >> Comcast.

2. A properly installed D* setup will not have rain fade, and is rated to operate in up to 50mph winds, but in reality, will actually operate with over 90mph winds. Many D* setups aren't aligned properly, as the Ka band stuff is extremely alignment sensitive. Comcast reliability depends on the area, but generally isn't that great, as if anything in the chain loses power, it's dead.

Interesting comparison of TiVo and the HR24. What do you mean by the guide layout on D* vs Comcast? Do you mean the channel lineup? Or TiVo's guide vs. the HR24 guide? The Premiere really isn't much different from the Roamio, except for the fact that it's really slow...

Personally, I'm on Comcast only because of TiVo. I'm hoping to eventually live in a FIOS area, which with TiVo, would be the ultimate. If D* supported TiVo, I'd go to D* in a second, and a local ISP for internet.
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Old 05-08-2014, 08:33 PM   #3
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I just made the move to Comcast from D* about a month ago. I was with D* for 11 years. But we moved from a house to an apartment and D* is no longer an option.

I would argue about the rain fade. Even if the alignment is perfect it's a problem at time. Since the reality is that most of us aren't going to align the dish ourselves, the odds of a perfect alignment are slim. In the end, rain fade is an issue. I've also had issues with heavy snow building up on the dish causing issues.
That's not to say Comcast won't have reliability issues too.

I see a significant difference in picture quality. Maybe it's area dependent, but here it's a pretty obvious difference.
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:45 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigg View Post
Interesting experience a couple of points:

1. Comcast heavily compresses their HD channels. They have gotten better at tri-muxing, but the picture qualtiy still isn't very good. Although it varies channel to channel, the pecking order is generation FIOS > DirecTV >> Comcast.

2. A properly installed D* setup will not have rain fade, and is rated to operate in up to 50mph winds, but in reality, will actually operate with over 90mph winds. Many D* setups aren't aligned properly, as the Ka band stuff is extremely alignment sensitive. Comcast reliability depends on the area, but generally isn't that great, as if anything in the chain loses power, it's dead.

Interesting comparison of TiVo and the HR24. What do you mean by the guide layout on D* vs Comcast? Do you mean the channel lineup? Or TiVo's guide vs. the HR24 guide? The Premiere really isn't much different from the Roamio, except for the fact that it's really slow...

Personally, I'm on Comcast only because of TiVo. I'm hoping to eventually live in a FIOS area, which with TiVo, would be the ultimate. If D* supported TiVo, I'd go to D* in a second, and a local ISP for internet.

Every Comcast area is different. Here they are fairly strong and competitive. Just like D* they cram HD stations and try to maximize bandwidth. Fios is available in a tiny fraction of areas so not really an option for the majority of people.

Rain fade is an issue more here than in other areas of the country. Not sure if its the angle to the Sat or the kind of storms we get but in Florida it is an issue more so than when we are traveling say up NY. Since our dish auto points and adjusts its almost always perfectly aligned. When they did the KA/KU switch rain fade became a much bigger issue.

The tivo guide shows more info (more time slots). Better layout with the two guide options, lists new episodes prominently and even the season episode is shown in the show info. Guide is significantly faster.

Premier was a pile of garbage. If people are ok with the unit chugging with literally every action that is their business but I personally thought it was a POS machine. Roamio is the exact opposite. Much faster than anything we had on D*.

Last edited by aridon : 05-09-2014 at 01:27 AM.
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Old 05-09-2014, 05:26 AM   #5
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DTV to Comcast

I recently switched to Comcast after being with DirecTV for 10 years.
The reason that I switched was mainly due to cost and the rain fade issue.
My Dish was aligned so that the 103 SAT signal levels were all in the mid to high 90's, 101 Sat signals were at 100. I still experienced rain fade and even dense cloud fade.
The Comcast service in my area has been rock solid. The picture quality on some channels is equal to what I had with DTV. The DTV picture quality is not as good as it originally was when HD was first introduced. Comcast still heavily compresses their channels, some more than others.

I thought that I would miss the Genie Whole Home DVR until I purchased a Tivo Roamio. The Roamio is an excellent piece of hardware.
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Old 05-09-2014, 05:49 PM   #6
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I would argue about the rain fade. Even if the alignment is perfect it's a problem at time. Since the reality is that most of us aren't going to align the dish ourselves, the odds of a perfect alignment are slim. In the end, rain fade is an issue. I've also had issues with heavy snow building up on the dish causing issues.
That's not to say Comcast won't have reliability issues too.
If you had rain fade, your dish alignment isn't right or there was something else wrong with your setup. You have to get a good installer, mount to a solid structure, and use both stabilizer struts to have a reliable experience with the SL5 dishes. Also, the older systems with external multiswitches can have signal loss in the wiring, whereas modern SWiMLine dishes don't have that issue, as they do all the multiswitching in the LNB assembly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aridon View Post
Every Comcast area is different. Here they are fairly strong and competitive. Just like D* they cram HD stations and try to maximize bandwidth. Fios is available in a tiny fraction of areas so not really an option for the majority of people.
That depends on the market. Some markets have a lot of FIOS. Comcast's picture quality, however, does not depend on the market, because it is tri-muxed nationally, with the exception of local channels, which obviously are handled on a market by market basis.

Quote:
Rain fade is an issue more here than in other areas of the country. Not sure if its the angle to the Sat or the kind of storms we get but in Florida it is an issue more so than when we are traveling say up NY. Since our dish auto points and adjusts its almost always perfectly aligned. When they did the KA/KU switch rain fade became a much bigger issue.
You travel around in an RV a lot? The lower sat angles do affect reception a bit, although weather is another big factor. There is no way you can get an in-spec setup on an RV, as you don't have a completely solid structure to mount to, nor do you have the stabilizer bars all installed. It may work fine for traveling around, but it's still not in spec.

Quote:
Premier was a pile of garbage. If people are ok with the unit chugging with literally every action that is their business but I personally thought it was a POS machine. Roamio is the exact opposite. Much faster than anything we had on D*.
It is slow. But that doesn't automatically make it a piece of garbage.
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Last edited by Bigg : 05-09-2014 at 05:50 PM. Reason: Combine posts
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Old 05-11-2014, 06:37 PM   #7
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Can somebody explain the OP "ebay codes" comment? This caught my attention. I honestly don't have info...but I want to call B.S. on the statement "The Ebay codes are by far the best deals I've seen. Don't hesitate to buy one".
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Old 05-11-2014, 07:07 PM   #8
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Can somebody explain the OP "ebay codes" comment? This caught my attention. I honestly don't have info...but I want to call B.S. on the statement "The Ebay codes are by far the best deals I've seen. Don't hesitate to buy one".
The statement is farily accurate. The ebay codes are the best deal, assuming you don't pay too much to obtain one. Here are the prices you can get with one of those codes: http://sellmoretivo.com/
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Old 05-11-2014, 10:06 PM   #9
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Can somebody explain the OP "ebay codes" comment? This caught my attention. I honestly don't have info...but I want to call B.S. on the statement "The Ebay codes are by far the best deals I've seen. Don't hesitate to buy one".

No BS. I've never seen a better deal. If you have please share it.

Pro
Lifetime
Warranty
Shipping / tax

Was around $750.
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Old 05-12-2014, 04:52 PM   #10
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Looks like they are registering people with TiVo or themselves to be a "salesperson", which is rather sleazy. I can't imagine TiVo won't catch on to this and shut it down.
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Old 05-12-2014, 04:58 PM   #11
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Looks like they are registering people with TiVo or themselves to be a "salesperson", which is rather sleazy. I can't imagine TiVo won't catch on to this and shut it down.
Are you calling me "sleazy"? I have sold more tivos (indirectly) than many best buy salesman, I can guarantee you that! If they have a problem with me promoting and "selling" their equipment and services I'll gladly quit doing it.
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Old 05-12-2014, 06:51 PM   #12
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Looks like they are registering people with TiVo or themselves to be a "salesperson", which is rather sleazy. I can't imagine TiVo won't catch on to this and shut it down.
In 2007 and 2006? Talk about advanced planning. I was a happy customer. I don't make a dime but I'd rather others save it so mention it when it comes up.
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Old 05-14-2014, 04:46 PM   #13
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Are you calling me "sleazy"? I have sold more tivos (indirectly) than many best buy salesman, I can guarantee you that! If they have a problem with me promoting and "selling" their equipment and services I'll gladly quit doing it.
That site looks pretty sleazy, that's all I'm saying. If TiVo is OK with that loophole, then OK, carry on. I'd imagine they would have shut it down if they weren't...
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Old 05-15-2014, 03:55 AM   #14
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That site looks pretty sleazy, that's all I'm saying. If TiVo is OK with that loophole, then OK, carry on. I'd imagine they would have shut it down if they weren't...
I was talking about doing it well before that site ever existed.
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Old 05-15-2014, 01:24 PM   #15
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As far as paying$$ for the genie hr44 ,I think your wrong as directv has been offering the genie HR44 for free to new and even existing customers for sometime now.
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Old 05-15-2014, 04:58 PM   #16
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I was talking about doing it well before that site ever existed.
Well I was referring to that site.

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As far as paying$$ for the genie hr44 ,I think your wrong as directv has been offering the genie HR44 for free to new and even existing customers for sometime now.
The monthly fees with that system are very steep.
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Old 05-15-2014, 08:31 PM   #17
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Looks like they are registering people with TiVo or themselves to be a "salesperson", which is rather sleazy. I can't imagine TiVo won't catch on to this and shut it down.
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Well I was referring to that site. The monthly fees with that system are very steep.
Which site were you referring to, the sellmoretivo one or something else?
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Old 05-16-2014, 07:19 PM   #18
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Which site were you referring to, the sellmoretivo one or something else?
The one that was linked above.
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Old 05-16-2014, 09:53 PM   #19
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The one that was linked above.
The only one linked above was sellmoretivo and that is hosted and run by TiVo, so why would they have to "catch on" to themselves and shut themselves down?
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Old 05-17-2014, 09:15 PM   #20
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The only one linked above was sellmoretivo and that is hosted and run by TiVo, so why would they have to "catch on" to themselves and shut themselves down?
Really? It looks pretty sleazy, not like something from TiVo...
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Old 05-18-2014, 12:05 AM   #21
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Really? It looks pretty sleazy, not like something from TiVo...
It's a training tool and incentive for their retail partners.
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Old 05-18-2014, 12:16 PM   #22
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It's a training tool and incentive for their retail partners.
Right, in which case, it's not just for someone looking for a discount...
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Old 05-18-2014, 04:06 PM   #23
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Right, in which case, it's not just for someone looking for a discount...
No, but I think it is possibly intended as a "friends and family" type deal because there are three different training course online that you complete and you get a code for each one completed, not just a single code, so if it was only intended for that person alone, why give them three codes? You can buy an entire system with just one code, you're not limited to one device per code. I even put in 999 minis and it totaled it all up and allowed it!
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Old 05-19-2014, 03:46 PM   #24
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No, but I think it is possibly intended as a "friends and family" type deal because there are three different training course online that you complete and you get a code for each one completed, not just a single code, so if it was only intended for that person alone, why give them three codes? You can buy an entire system with just one code, you're not limited to one device per code. I even put in 999 minis and it totaled it all up and allowed it!
Maybe for a dealer with a few other people working with them? Although I'd think they would want to get everyone trained...
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