Stick it out or make the switch? D*TV vs. Cablevision

Discussion in 'DirecTV TiVo Powered PVRs & Receivers' started by ycrazyy, Jul 23, 2007.

  1. ycrazyy

    ycrazyy Big Perm

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    New York, NY
    So I absolutely LOVE my HR10's to death and really don't want to get rid of them. But with the imminent end of the HR10's coming, and the unwillingness to part with another $400+ for an "improved" HD-DVR from DirecTV (2 actually) I started debating getting Cablevision. I live in Westchester, NY and called up Cablevision just to see what they would offer. I got the following:
    Gold package + all OnDemands (1 year) + Optimum Online + 2 HD DVRS + they pay all cancellation fees for Verizon DSL and DirecTV all for less than my DirecTV bill is. I was skeptical at first since I love my large storage capacity, but then I figured out you can add on an external drive to the 8300HD boxes. I have been a D*TV subscriber for almost 15 years now and I spend $125+ every month and they still only offered me $199 + shipping for each HR20, plus I do not like the idea of getting the HR20 and feel that Cablevision has a lot more HD content to offer. Does anyone have any experience and thus opinions on the 2 services? I am not a basher of D*TV in any way, but this deal just seems to be so much less money for so much more! I'm really in a debate here and would appreciate any input. Thanks!
     
  2. ebonovic

    ebonovic has gone his way...

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    Tinley...
    If you call back, you probably should get at least one of those HR20's for free (or $19.. the cost of shipping), but $199 is the normal price they are offering for the unit.

    Honestly...
    Put your account on suspension.

    Try out Cablevision... if you are happy with it... then you have done your diligence as a consumer and found something that works for you, your usage, and your bottom line.

    As for "a lot more HD content to offer"... I would DEFINENTLY at least hold onto your account with DirecTV (at least in a suspended mode), till after September.

    After you are satisfied, with the service... or with the knowledge that you tried it and didn't like it... call and take the appropriate action with DirecTV.
     
  3. TonyTheTiger

    TonyTheTiger Pro Troll Magnet

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    You obviously spoke to the wrong CSR. Call back and tell them you're thinking of cancelling, which is obviously true. They should transfer you to Retention, who have much more negotiating power to keep you as a customer.

    Many people on this board have taken that route and many have been offered a free DVR (well, almost - $19.95 S&H) and two for $99 - some have even got two for S&H only. You may even get some programming deals thrown in (free movie channels for a few months or free HD, etc.)

    It's worth a try. If you don't get what you would consider enough to stay with D*, you can go ahead and cancel at that point.
     
  4. drew2k

    drew2k Drew != Drawn

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    Another note for the OP ... the Cablevision SA8300HD DVR uses the Sara software, which has an interface that makes a mid-1980's era PC look advanced. In other words, it's pretty bad. For one thing, there's no skip-to-tick, because there's no "ticks". There's no skip ahead (at all ... just FFW). There is barely an search capability, there's no folder grouping for your playlist, you have to press two different keys to get to a channel guide, and the To Do List leaves a LOT to be desired.
     
  5. nrc

    nrc Cracker Soul

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    Living in a...
    If it's just price you can probably haggle over the DVR cost with DTV if you're so inclined. If you don't want to give up TiVo, why accept a crappy cable company DVR? The new, lower cost HD TiVo is another option. If you visit the S3 forum here you'll find discussion of Cablevision subscribers with the S3.
     
  6. ycrazyy

    ycrazyy Big Perm

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    New York, NY
    I agree that the Cablevision, and for the most part, any cable DVR is like driving around a horse and buggy compared to the TiVo (I've used my friends and my families cable DVRs and they leave a lot to be desired). I had a convo with my friend who has Cablevision with the 8300HD and the points that you brought up are exactly what he said (the biggest minuses for him were the search capability and the lack of ticks and thus all ticking action). I am going to try to call D*TV again today, my whole issue is I don't want to get sucked into another 2 year agreement because although my current apartment building has DirecTV, I am looking to buy a home / apt and am not sure if where I will buy will have DirecTV. I think I'll see what they offer me when I call today since Cablevision is supposed to call me tomorrow, I suppose I can always go the retention route (since my contract is up in about 4 - 5 weeks anyway) and see if they can do better even though I dislike going that way. Thanks for the input!

    Oh and regarding the S3 TiVo, I wouldn't buy it at the moment out of principle. I believe that $700+ and then a monthly fee on top of my cable fees is just a bit too pricey especially for multiple TVs. I do love TiVo and want to support them, but when the S3 costs almost as much or in some cases more than a good HDTV it is meant to be hooked up to, there are issues...
     
  7. Bob Coxner

    Bob Coxner Active Member

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    Dec 1, 2004
    Currently the SA8300HD runs three different software packages, depending on your local franchise. Sara is bad and has an ancient GUI. Passport is a bit better. However, TW is bringing their software inhouse (like DTV and everyone else) and moving all franchises to Navigator. Navigator has been a total disaster so far. You can read the horror stories at AVS Forum:

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=723830&page=1&pp=30
     
  8. bonscott87

    bonscott87 Done.

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    To me since you're not looking at Tivo with Cablevision either, why do you feel the cable DVR is better then the HR20? (I don't know, maybe it is.)
    So you're not actually gaining anything DVR wise.
    So it sounds to me it's simply the money to upgrade? Definately call back because as an HR10 owner you should get at least 1 HR20 for free (or $19.95) and may be able to get both for that price. Talk with retention and tell them the deal you're getting from Cablevision. All assuming you want to stay with DirecTV. Try a couple times until you get the deal. Or sounds like you're serious about leaving anyway so follow thru on it and have them actually cancel (or suspend) your account if they don't give you a deal. You'll probably get farther then the people that call up and threaten to simply get a deal and won't follow-up on the threat.

    And yes, I'd either wait until after September to make your channel comparison or at least put DirecTV is suspend mode while you try out Cablevision. But check what commitment you'll be making with Cablevision. I say that because most of the time if cable "buys you out" of your current contract with DBS then you agree to a commitment of 2-3 years with them at a certain level, usually their entire triple play pack. So you might save some money that first year and then find yourself paying $50+ a month more then DirecTV those last couple years. So research that if your decision is mainly a $$$$ one.

    Also give Dish Network a check.
     
  9. RS4

    RS4 New Member

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    Sep 2, 2001
    Indianapolis...
    "Oh and regarding the S3 TiVo, I wouldn't buy it at the moment out of principle. I believe that $700+ and then a monthly fee on top of my cable fees is just a bit too pricey especially for multiple TVs. I do love TiVo and want to support them, but when the S3 costs almost as much or in some cases more than a good HDTV it is meant to be hooked up to, there are issues...
    "


    Tivo is announcing a $299 HD S3-lite today. Maybe that will meet your needs.
     
  10. nrc

    nrc Cracker Soul

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    Living in a...
    Something else to consider. If you own your HR10s you can probably get still get something for them on eBay to help defray your costs. If you pay $199 for an HR20 you're still just leasing it.
     
  11. ycrazyy

    ycrazyy Big Perm

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    Dec 2, 2001
    New York, NY
    These are all great points and I really appreciate it. The monthly payments aren't an issue for me as I've already been spending a lot and the $30 +/- per month wouldn't make a difference in my budget. The more I think about cable, the more I shiver. The only real plus when I thought about it was no commitment to them at all and no up-front costs, but if D*TV will give me the boxes for $19.95/ea then it wouldn't really matter. Guess I will just have to give it a try. I'll report back with what they tell me.
     
  12. ycrazyy

    ycrazyy Big Perm

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    Dec 2, 2001
    New York, NY
    Ok so I took the plunge and I will find out how happy I am going to be with the new HR20's next Tues between 8am and 12pm.

    They offered me $99 for both (not each) at first. I told the CSR I was unhappy with that since I have been a loyal customer and platinum subscriber for so long, plus I bought my HR10's less then 2 years ago for a lot of money and was upset they would not work with the new channels. He got it down to $19.95 + tax for each (total $43 for both). I asked for a little extra and got $10/mo off for a year as well...

    So I ended up with 2 new receivers, get to keep my upgraded HR10's and a net gain of $77 with the programming credits. I can't complain, just had to ask the guy nicely (he was much friendlier then the first person I spoke to). Guess it's time to order some new drives and external enclosures for the new HR20's.
     
  13. TonyTheTiger

    TonyTheTiger Pro Troll Magnet

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    Strike another one up to TCF!

    Glad you got the deal. Don't forget to visit dbstalk.com for information on the new boxes.
     
  14. magnus

    magnus Tivo User

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    Texas
    I did not think that the H20 does any if that but maybe I am mistaken. From what I understand you can't even upgrade the drives on these (well, I think you can put a bigger drive in there but you won't get any more recording space).

     
  15. ycrazyy

    ycrazyy Big Perm

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    New York, NY
    Read up on DBSTalk, you can upgrade the internal drive as well as adding an external eSATA drive. People have reported success with 1TB internal + 1TB external (personally a bit too much storage for my taste, but a 750gb plus the stock drive will do).
     
  16. magnus

    magnus Tivo User

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    Nah, that's ok... would not matter to me if it were free and you could upgrade to 100TB. I guess someone finally found a way to do it.... last I had heard you could put the new drive in but not get any more recording time.


    Anyway, it's good to hear that they can be hacked as well but for me Directv will never be an option.


     
  17. drew2k

    drew2k Drew != Drawn

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    Long Island, NY
    Please note that unless you paid the full price (~ $800) for the HR20, it's most likely leased and you violate the lease terms by opening the HR20 cover. Anyone who wants more recording space would be better off just using a very large eSATA drive.
     
  18. TonyTheTiger

    TonyTheTiger Pro Troll Magnet

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    I haven't read much in the other forum for a while, so I think I have some catching up to do.

    However, last I read, if you plug in an eSATA drive, the internal drive is not used, just the external. Is this no longer true?
     
  19. bonscott87

    bonscott87 Done.

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    The eSata drive replaces the internal drive.

    So all one has to do is buy the 750gb or 1 tb eSata drive, plug it in and reboot the HR20. It will boot back up using the eSata drive and you're done. Easy as pie. :D
     
  20. ycrazyy

    ycrazyy Big Perm

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    Dec 2, 2001
    New York, NY
    Ok so in light of some new information, I now have a new dilemma. I have decided to keep DirecTV (obviously) however I live in an MDU and apparently the technology is not available yet for MDU people to get the MPEG4 satellites, especially the new one. I am tempted to cancel my order / install, not extend my contract (since I have not activated the units yet) and just keep my HR10's until this technology is available which possibly won't be until early next year at which point I'm hoping to move into a house. The only reason I was willing to switch to the HR20 was for the additional HD channels which I guess I am not going to get anyway! My HR10's are all already upgraded, my gf is familiar with their operation, and if there is no thought that they are going to shut down the MPEG2 stream until this new MDU technology becomes available (I can't imagine they would shut out all of their MDU customers from HDTV) then there is no real reason to switch right now. I am so confused!
     

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