DirecTV On-Demand / Cinema / PPV / etc, etc, etc - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 10-03-2012, 01:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Can anyone here explain the difference between the following DirecTV features:

(1) On-Demand
(2) DirecTV Cinema
(3) Pay-Per-View
(4) DirecTV Cinema w/ "Connection Kit"
(5) DirecTV Active
(6) DirecTV Showroom
(7) Any other similar on-demand-ish programming features

In particular, I'm interested in things like:

(1) Cost -- up-front, monthly, and pay-per-use
(2) Programming options / availability, e.g., number of movies / TV shows offered at any given time, how quickly new movies are released, etc.
(3) Hardware / system requirements (in general, but also in particular, if having my receiver or any other component being wired to my broadband connection via ethernet is required)

I'd also be interested in how NetFlix compares to any of these services for anyone that has it.

Thanks much!
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post #2 of 13 Old 10-03-2012, 02:00 PM
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I'll give it a shot since I use both DirecTV and Netflix...

1/ On-demand. Not positive on how DirecTV marketing department has branded this but generally fairly self-explanatory, this is a service to watch something on an individual showing basis "on demand". Some is free and downloadable to your dvr (rather than watching live), some is "free" if you subscribe to that particular premium channel, some others are watching live at a given time on a pay per view basis.

2/ DirectTV Cinema. Think this is the fairly current movie selection on a pay per view basis (which generally can be done by starting to watch at a given start time or recorded to your dvr for you to decide later when to watch (or even if you want to watch it, you can later delete it without buying it if you choose not to view it after recording).

3/ Pay per View. Speaks for itself again.

4/ DirecTV Cinema w/connection kit. Not sure I've seen that phrase, but might be aimed at non-customers or for their whole home dvr service....check their website

5/ DirecTV ACtive. See number 4

6/ DirecTV Showroom. See number 4.

7/ Check out their whole home hd dvr setups.

Don't know what the initial setup cost is, it's probably on their website, though and there are probably promotions to knock it down to $0 regularly even if there is a charge on the schedule. I inherited a DirecTV setup in the house I rent, just transferred account from previous housemate when he moved out. I've paid up to $150 a month for the full HD/premium package but have cut back. Pay about 85/mo now for HD with two premium channels (TMC and Encore), including one dvr and one receiver with the whole home setup. Think individual pay per views, range from $5-$7 mostly (believe most are viewable for 2 days?). Overall the quality of pic and sound is pretty good, much more reliable than an internet connection and generally better quality except perhaps for VUDU service. Netflix is decent, but doesn't have 5 channel sound for many offerings, decent pic quality but subject to your interrnet connection basis. I had to upgrade my cable internet to a higher level to eliminate some start/stop issues with streaming apps like Netflix. The on demand selection of DirecTV vs Netflix will partly depend on the plan you take out with DirecTV, but I think Netflix will still have the wider selection at any given time except for the latest and greatest, where the PPV of DirectTV exceeds their streaming service by quite a bit, and even exceeds their disc rentals...

Hope that helps.

"I realize that somebody playing free music isn't as commercial as a hamburger stand. But is it because you can eat a hamburger and hold it in your hand and you can't do that with music? Is it too free to control?" - Don Van Vliet (aka Captain Beefheart) discussing commercial success in the music biz


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post #3 of 13 Old 10-03-2012, 03:18 PM
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You can browse their selection HERE. As the previous poster said, all that stuff is just different names for 2 basic offerings: PPV and On Demand.

One new release is essentially the same price as an entire month of Netflix. So I personally won't touch PPV with a 10 foot pole. Much like the movies you rent in a hotel, cable/satellite PPV exists to extract as much money as possible from their subscribers who either don't care about the cost, buy on impulse or have no other means to get the programming. A buck at Redbox for new releases and Netflix/Hulu for most everything else works just fine. If it's not at redbox, I can wait a few more weeks. Some justify the high cost by saying it's still cheaper than taking a family of 4 to the movies. That's true, but a $1 disc works just the same, although it may take an extra half hour to pick up and return.

PPV doesn't require an internet connection since it's delivered via satellite. But On Demand does. There are a myriad of ways to connect: wired, wireless, powerline, gateway, bridge, you name it. The installer will usually give you what you need for free.
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post #4 of 13 Old 10-04-2012, 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by mdavej View Post

You can browse their selection HERE. As the previous poster said, all that stuff is just different names for 2 basic offerings: PPV and On Demand.

One new release is essentially the same price as an entire month of Netflix. So I personally won't touch PPV with a 10 foot pole. Much like the movies you rent in a hotel, cable/satellite PPV exists to extract as much money as possible from their subscribers who either don't care about the cost, buy on impulse or have no other means to get the programming. A buck at Redbox for new releases and Netflix/Hulu for most everything else works just fine. If it's not at redbox, I can wait a few more weeks. Some justify the high cost by saying it's still cheaper than taking a family of 4 to the movies. That's true, but a $1 disc works just the same, although it may take an extra half hour to pick up and return.

PPV doesn't require an internet connection since it's delivered via satellite. But On Demand does. There are a myriad of ways to connect: wired, wireless, powerline, gateway, bridge, you name it. The installer will usually give you what you need for free.

I think the DirecTV Cinema (if I have that marketing phrase right) offers both an on demand type by downloading to your dvr but still via satellite, or at least I was able to do that before I got the whole home service and the additional on demand channel offerings that resulted; the newer on demand selections of the myriad "channels" outside of DirecTV's, work in connection with your internet connection. Gotta love marketing people to make it sound as confused as they are...

"I realize that somebody playing free music isn't as commercial as a hamburger stand. But is it because you can eat a hamburger and hold it in your hand and you can't do that with music? Is it too free to control?" - Don Van Vliet (aka Captain Beefheart) discussing commercial success in the music biz


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post #5 of 13 Old 10-04-2012, 01:45 PM
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PPV isn't going to happen for me--too exensive. I do use the On Demand primarily because it will download to the hard drive at very high quality for later viewing. This is of importance to me because we have a fairly slow dsl connection. Netflix via my PS3 will work most of the time but at pretty low resolution. A BD quality episode of Game of Thrones takes 6+ hours to download but looks fantastic when played back--I just have to plan downloads for times when nobody else in the house is using the internet. The SO forbids any dealings with Comcast, hence our lousy dsl.

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post #6 of 13 Old 10-05-2012, 07:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovinthehd View Post

I think the DirecTV Cinema (if I have that marketing phrase right) offers both an on demand type by downloading to your dvr but still via satellite, or at least I was able to do that before I got the whole home service and the additional on demand channel offerings that resulted; the newer on demand selections of the myriad "channels" outside of DirecTV's, work in connection with your internet connection. Gotta love marketing people to make it sound as confused as they are...

You are correct and they are now doing the same with local commercials. "local cable inserts"

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post #7 of 13 Old 10-05-2012, 08:04 AM
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The DirecTV Cinema Connection Kit (available in wired and wireless versions) are DirecTVs DECA (a version of MOCA) adapter. This allows all of your compatible receivers to access the internet without having to hook them up to ethernet or have a WiFi access point at each one. Instead they all network together over the same coax cables they use to get the DirecTV programming. Then the CCK is used to bridge that network to your home ethernet/wifi network to get them all internet access for On-Demand, Pandora, Web Apps, etc.
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post #8 of 13 Old 10-07-2012, 09:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Beerstalker View Post

The DirecTV Cinema Connection Kit (available in wired and wireless versions) are DirecTVs DECA (a version of MOCA) adapter. This allows all of your compatible receivers to access the internet without having to hook them up to ethernet or have a WiFi access point at each one. Instead they all network together over the same coax cables they use to get the DirecTV programming. Then the CCK is used to bridge that network to your home ethernet/wifi network to get them all internet access for On-Demand, Pandora, Web Apps, etc.

From a networking perspective, what kind of device is the CCK? It's not a wireless access point, is it? Is it using NAT (network address translation) to get IP addresses for the receivers, or when you say "bridge", do you literally mean it's a network bridge including DHCP?

I ask because, curiously, my wireless router reports the CCK as being on the network, but it doesn't report any of the receivers, which have their own (different) IP addresses, even though all appear to be on the router's private subnet.
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post #9 of 13 Old 10-07-2012, 11:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aligborat View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beerstalker View Post

The DirecTV Cinema Connection Kit (available in wired and wireless versions) are DirecTVs DECA (a version of MOCA) adapter. This allows all of your compatible receivers to access the internet without having to hook them up to ethernet or have a WiFi access point at each one. Instead they all network together over the same coax cables they use to get the DirecTV programming. Then the CCK is used to bridge that network to your home ethernet/wifi network to get them all internet access for On-Demand, Pandora, Web Apps, etc.

From a networking perspective, what kind of device is the CCK? It's not a wireless access point, is it? Is it using NAT (network address translation) to get IP addresses for the receivers, or when you say "bridge", do you literally mean it's a network bridge including DHCP?

I ask because, curiously, my wireless router reports the CCK as being on the network, but it doesn't report any of the receivers, which have their own (different) IP addresses, even though all appear to be on the router's private subnet.

You originally queried pre-install or?

"I realize that somebody playing free music isn't as commercial as a hamburger stand. But is it because you can eat a hamburger and hold it in your hand and you can't do that with music? Is it too free to control?" - Don Van Vliet (aka Captain Beefheart) discussing commercial success in the music biz


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post #10 of 13 Old 10-07-2012, 12:13 PM - Thread Starter
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My original post was prior to getting the CCK. Now I've installed it, connected it to my network, plus two of my receivers. Everything (CCK and receivers) has an IP on the same subnet. I think it must be acting as a network bridge.
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post #11 of 13 Old 10-07-2012, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by aligborat View Post

My original post was prior to getting the CCK. Now I've installed it, connected it to my network, plus two of my receivers. Everything (CCK and receivers) has an IP on the same subnet. I think it must be acting as a network bridge.

Over my head smile.gif When I look at my network and devices on my pc I see two DirecTV mediashare renderers and one Directv2pc media server. When the guys connected my bedroom to the whole home thing (CCK?) I asked if they needed a better signal from my wireless network (it doesn't cover that wall of the bedroom well) they indicated it was actually using the directv feed (coax feeds is how I took that but I dunno....I'm an old fart when it comes to networking setups)

"I realize that somebody playing free music isn't as commercial as a hamburger stand. But is it because you can eat a hamburger and hold it in your hand and you can't do that with music? Is it too free to control?" - Don Van Vliet (aka Captain Beefheart) discussing commercial success in the music biz


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post #12 of 13 Old 10-07-2012, 12:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Whole Home uses your home's coax cable for networking, so it's independent of the wireless signal strength. CCK (Cinema Connection Kit) is a little wireless device that hooks into the system, and allows you to connect your receivers to the internet without running ethernet cables. If you have Whole-Home, CCK will hook up all your receivers through the single CCK wireless connection -- again, the receivers talk to the CCK via the coax cables. Whole-Home and CCK are really two completely independent services / features, but they integrate together nicely if you happen to have both.

Now, I have no idea what "mediashare" or "directv2pc" are. :-)
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post #13 of 13 Old 10-07-2012, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by aligborat View Post

Whole Home uses your home's coax cable for networking, so it's independent of the wireless signal strength. CCK (Cinema Connection Kit) is a little wireless device that hooks into the system, and allows you to connect your receivers to the internet without running ethernet cables. If you have Whole-Home, CCK will hook up all your receivers through the single CCK wireless connection -- again, the receivers talk to the CCK via the coax cables. Whole-Home and CCK are really two completely independent services / features, but they integrate together nicely if you happen to have both.

Now, I have no idea what "mediashare" or "directv2pc" are. :-)

I think the directv2pc is identifying my bedroom DirecTV receiver (HR20) that I've got hooked up by ethernet from an extender router (I think, set that up before the whole home install). I'm assuming the mediashare units are the two small boxes that enable the whole home thing. I just looked at the DirecTV website and the CCK unit they picture I don't have. One other thing, when I got the new HR24 dvr/receiver it doesn't output YbPbPr but rather RGB which makes me tweak settings on my tv more to approximate the picture I had with the older HR21.

"I realize that somebody playing free music isn't as commercial as a hamburger stand. But is it because you can eat a hamburger and hold it in your hand and you can't do that with music? Is it too free to control?" - Don Van Vliet (aka Captain Beefheart) discussing commercial success in the music biz


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