HDTV: MPEG2 to MPEG4 causing major confusion.

Discussion in 'DirecTV TiVo Powered PVRs & Receivers' started by jmarks2001, Jan 11, 2006.

  1. jmarks2001

    jmarks2001 New Member

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    Dec 14, 2003
    As a longtime D* customer who's been thinking about taking the HD plunge, all this MPEG2 to MPEG4 stuff is confusing me. I currently have a to DTivo setup (bedroom only has one tuner active). Since I'd be replacing the TV in my living room, I thought it would just be a matter of a) upgrading to the elliptical dish, and b) upgrading my receiver to the HR10-250.

    What complicates matters is that I'm a little less than honest to DTV about where I live as it gives me the local and sports programming I want (originally I did it just to get locals, but after they started offering my locals, I didn't want to give up the sports).

    I'm in a relatively small market, but D* thinks I'm in NJ (NY market). If I have to have them come out to do an installation/upgrade, I'll change my address with them ahead of time (like I did when I got them to upgrade me to a DTivo for free), then change it back later. So in order to get NY Locals and Sports and get the maximum amount of HD content without the hassle of multiple installations (which means changing my address 4 times instead of 2), I should probably wait until the HR20 is released.

    Couple questions though:

    1) Seeing as I'm not in an MPEG4 area, will they set me up with the right dish? The dish is different (and pointed different) than the current ellipticals receiving the MPEG2 signal, right?

    2) Will locals be spot-beamed? Will I even be able to get the NY locals if I'm several hundred miles south of the tri-state area?

    3) Is there any other national HD content (TBS,TNT,USA,etc.) that will be immediately available with MPEG4 (that's not available with MPEG2).

    4) If I opt for the HR10-250 while it's still available, will I be set for a while? I know I'll be okay for locals, since NY HD locals are already available in MPEG2. But what about other HD content. Will I miss out on stuff that gets rolled out in MPEG4, but not in MPEG2? Or is the plan to use the MPEG4 signal for the 1500 locals, and not much else?

    Answers to these questions and any other information will be greatly appreciated. Oh, and if I'm completely off-base about something, please tell me.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. HogarthNH

    HogarthNH DirecTV Addict

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    Dec 28, 2001
    Somewhere, OK
    If you're not in a market with current MPEG4 locals, they will probably send the Phase III oval/MPEG2 dish. But correct. The AT9 has 5 LNBs, is much bigger, and is pointed slightly differently and on a different mast.

    Locals are spot beamed. You're not intended to receive them, so it's hard to say if you might. Ku-band spot beams are a little dicier than Ka-band beams.

    Absolutely not.

    At this point, that's the plan. DTV press releases keep stating 100+ national HD channels (in MPEG4), but we won't see them until very late this year, or early next year, at the very, very earliest.

    You're confused because DirecTV intends for you to be. MPEG4 is not ready for you. It's not yet mature. It's being rolled out gradually for a reason.

    If you're craving a HD DVR, and you can get OTA, get an HR10-250.
    Otherwise, just sit back and wait. This will all get clearer in the coming months.

    H
     
  3. ADent

    ADent Active Member

    2,143
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    Jan 7, 2000
    Denver, CO
    1) No.

    2) Yes on the spots. No reception far away.

    3) No extra MPEG4 channels.

    4) Yes set for awhile. Awhile may be 3 months or 12 months. Yes you will miss out on any MPEG4 contect w/o a H20.

    Plan is MPEG4 for locals with Spaceway 1 & 2, get national MPEG4 when DTV10 is launched. They can do some liimited channel additions with SW 1 & 2, but not nationally unless they add it to every spot.
     
  4. jmarks2001

    jmarks2001 New Member

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    Dec 14, 2003
    Awesome responses. Thank you.

    One more thing then.

    Do you think they're going to take care of all the local markets in HD before they add any national content? Probably so, and I guess the thinking behind that is they don't want people in non-MPEG4 areas to ***** about not getting national HD content that people in other areas are getting. If they do all the locals first, they can then add the national content for everyone on the same playing field. Is there a rollout schedule somewhere? Or at least a priority list? I see people saying, "my market is #23 on the list"...where's the list?
     
  5. HogarthNH

    HogarthNH DirecTV Addict

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    Dec 28, 2001
    Somewhere, OK
    They're roughly following the order of Designated Market Areas set by Nielsen ratings.

    http://www.nielsenmedia.com/DMAs.html

    I say roughly because they have occasionally skipped around a little, for one reason or another -- but this is still approximately correct.
     
  6. jmarks2001

    jmarks2001 New Member

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    Dec 14, 2003
    Anyone know where on this list they are right now?
     
  7. HogarthNH

    HogarthNH DirecTV Addict

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    Dec 28, 2001
    Somewhere, OK
    They're round about #12. Plan is to have top 36 done by July. I'd expect top 72 by the end of 2006.
     
  8. johnh123

    johnh123 Member

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    Dec 7, 2000
    Over there
    And what are these 100 channels of national hd anyway- that many channels don't exist, do they?
     
  9. disco

    disco Father of Sam.

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    Mar 27, 2000
    Lake...
    No, they don't.


    But they will.
     
  10. AbMagFab

    AbMagFab What happened, TiVo?

    3,638
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    Feb 5, 2001
    Maybe by 2020. There just isn't enough new content to come close to 150 HD channels in the even medium-term future.

    Movie channels, sure. Major networks, yes. A handful of specialtly cable nets, okay. But that's maybe 30 channels maximum?

    We might get HD encoding, so the SD channels will look a lot better (like Survivor on ABC-HD - not HD, but it looks tons better than on ABC-SD). But that's not HD in spirit (although they'll claim it's HD).

    DirecTV still needs to double their HD programming, based on a promise over two years ago. All they gave us was UHD and ESPN-2. I wouldn't hold my breath on 150 national HD channels...
     

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