13 Reasons Not to Choose DirecTV -- A Review - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 59 Old 12-19-2008, 05:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E-A-G-L-E-S View Post

Well, what if this happens more than once everyday? Reboot m,ultiple times daily?

I'd also like to add that if it isn't sunny and no wind I lose my HD, but SD stays intat through almost anything....like not one channel of HD right now because we got an inch of snow and a little ice last night.

yes, because the fade on Ka channels is 3x the fade on the Ku channels.

You can get the SD channels Ku on 101/110/119. The HDs MUST COME from 99/103 which are Ka.
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post #32 of 59 Old 12-19-2008, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Devereux View Post

Here's some additional information in response to questions posed by other posters:
I contacted Ellen Filipiak, Senior VP of Customer Relations; I also spoke to two other DirecTV reps. In all cases they stated that they were "unable" to make reimbursement because Ironwood stated the installer did not damage to speaker. Pointing out that Ironwood was part of DirecTV made no difference: they were still "unable" pay for the damage. Also, I spoke to two DirecTV reps reminding them of the promised refund; both stated they couldn't "confirm" it. After spending tens of hours with Ironwood/DirecTV and filing complaints with the BBB, state attorneys general's office, and FCC, it was clear that subsequent appeals would fall on deaf ears and that any continuing efforts would be an exercise in futility. Hence, posting on several sites (since it's unlikely that everyone looking for information on DirecTV would necessarily find the AVSForum. (By the way, part of the delay in responding to follow-up posts occurred while my follow-up was being reviewed prior to posting.)

The current Oregon Attorney General has a reputation for not being very active. A new Attorney General with a strong consumer protection orientation has been elected, so maybe that will help in the future. The FCC stated that, although they take no direct action themselves, they collect information regarding complaints and make them available to attorneys who might be involved in a class action lawsuit.

Ironwood is local. Directv is not.

File a claim in Small Claims court against them.

That will get their attention.
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post #33 of 59 Old 12-19-2008, 05:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeachComber View Post

yes, because the fade on Ka channels is 3x the fade on the Ku channels.

You can get the SD channels Ku on 101/110/119. The HDs MUST COME from 99/103 which are Ka.

Yup, I knew that from asking before and overall I like D*, why I have had it for years......but the HD audio/video sync issues are everyday and really make me angry sometimes when they are so bad/off that my AVR can't resolve it.
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post #34 of 59 Old 12-19-2008, 09:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Devereux View Post


3. Promised credits never materialize on the bill.

This has been my experience as well. It seems like they are hoping customers won't notice they're not getting the credits. Worst of all, when I call again, instead of apologizing they tell me there is no record that I was supposed to get a credit and/or that the CSR wasn't supposed to offer me a credit. Once they even fabricated a story that I had called and accepted a smaller credit.
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post #35 of 59 Old 12-20-2008, 01:08 PM
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I have been thinking about switching from Time Warner Cable to Direct TV for a year or so. As time has gone by I have had numerous conversations with DTV users and every one of them had had an issue or two to complain about. Now after reading all this I can see that those that have made the investment into a dish system look to justify the expense and minimize the issues they have.
TWC is far from perfect and I have a real issue with the number of "real" HD channels (I don't care about PPV or shopping networks). They have been adding channels on a regular basis lately and although I have had an issue or two over the last fifteen years or so, I have had none of the serious issues others have had with DTV. The HD channels look great on my 123" screen and if they continue to add "real" network channels I think I'll stick with them.

You know, a guy could get into this HT thing and drop a couple of bucks!
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post #36 of 59 Old 12-20-2008, 01:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dgolombowski View Post

I have been thinking about switching from Time Warner Cable to Direct TV for a year or so. As time has gone by I have had numerous conversations with DTV users and every one of them had had an issue or two to complain about. Now after reading all this I can see that those that have made the investment into a dish system look to justify the expense and minimize the issues they have.
TWC is far from perfect and I have a real issue with the number of "real" HD channels (I don't care about PPV or shopping networks). They have been adding channels on a regular basis lately and although I have had an issue or two over the last fifteen years or so, I have had none of the serious issues others have had with DTV. The HD channels look great on my 123" screen and if they continue to add "real" network channels I think I'll stick with them.

I know few TWC customers as happy as you. You should count your blessings that you have had such good luck. While no service provider is perfect, I have had much better luck with DirecTV and Dish than with Cable.

Ted
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post #37 of 59 Old 12-21-2008, 02:15 AM
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I'm with Ted. I've been a lot happier with DIRECTV than I ever was with TWC. And no, I'm not of the mind that my provider is perfect, just the best fit for me.
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post #38 of 59 Old 12-22-2008, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by bidger View Post

I'm with Ted. I've been a lot happier with DIRECTV than I ever was with TWC. And no, I'm not of the mind that my provider is perfect, just the best fit for me.

That's where I am. D* is certainly not perfect - no provider is - but I'm happier with them than I ever was with cable.

To the OP: I hope you'll forgive me for my initial response to your post. Unfortunately, we do get people that post here specifically to make a certain provider or channel look good - or bad. Some of those people do work for the competition.

As pointed out by others here, many of your complaints should be directed to your installer, though, not D*. Of course, I would certainly let them know about a problem installer, but D* can't babysit these guys.

As far as programming and credit issues, that is something you need to keep on D* about. While I've never had the issues you speak of, it's important to keep tabs on what is happening and ask (politely) to speak to someone higher up if you don't get results.

No provider is perfect, or we'd all use them. To expect it will only result in disappointment.
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post #39 of 59 Old 12-23-2008, 02:14 AM
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Quote: by Beachcomber post #7

Originally Posted by Devereux
12. Attempting to record only the new episodes of a series does not work if the same episode appears later in the day or the next day (e.g., some news shows on MSNBC). The DVR will record multiple copies of the same show, unnecessarily using hard disk space.


Same with any service that uses the same guide info (which is most of them - not a D* issue)


In 6 years times 2 DVRs, with UTV I've never had that happen. Likewise, lack of a Remind function is another big weakness, with clutter and waste of my time.

I understand the HR22 still lacks a search-record for future events not yet in the EPG. For example Formula One events which don't start until some date unknown to me next February. Or March.

Bob - Inactive & available: 2 SD Sony SAT-W60 DVRs
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post #40 of 59 Old 12-23-2008, 10:25 AM
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Well! I can tell this is going to be a fun topic...
Anyway, I've only had DTV for a few days but I already like it better than Comcast... My two cents:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Devereux View Post

*** Reasons to Buy DirecTV ***
1. Terrific picture.

2. More HD channels, most with better picture than cable (Comcast 3-packed areas)
3. MUCH better DVR.
4. Cheaper.

Quote:


*** Reasons Not to Buy DirecTV ***

1. All too frequently the receiver must be reinitialized using the reset button; this takes 10 to 20 minutes, so if you are intending to watch a program, you're out of luck.

I take it you never used a Motorola DVR. Resetting them is a weekly ritual, daily somtimes even.

Quote:


2. They bill for premium channels not ordered and then state since the channels were available reversal of the charges are not possible.

Yeah I'm sure they randomly add premium channels to your bill

Quote:


5. They nickel and dime you to death with extra charges (e.g., more than one receiver, HD reception).

I take it you've never looked at a cable bill?

Quote:


6. The remote is not ergonomically designed, (blah blah)

The remote is OK, and there's always universal remotes.

Quote:


7. Only one channel is available from local stations that broadcast multiple channels. For example, the local PBS station broadcasts one hi-def channel and three standard definition channels, but only the former is available.

Nobody watches those subchannels anyway - really, another weather channel? IMO skip that crap and use the b/w for more HD channels.

Quote:


8. The audio and video are not always in sync; sometimes resetting the unit helps, sometimes not.

Apparently this is a common complaint but I can tell you right now sometimes this is at the source - ie the originating channel. TBS/TNT in particular are notorious for this, happens on cable too.

Quote:


9. Changing channels is not instantaneous, in fact, not even close, taking 4-11 seconds.

Using "native" output does increase the lockon time, but channel changing isn't instant with cable DVR either.

Quote:


11. Although you "purchase" the DVRs at $200 each when initiating service, you don't really own them and must return them to DirecTV or be charged once again for them.

Don't know what your deal is but I own mine.

Quote:


12. Attempting to record only the new episodes of a series does not work if the same episode appears later in the day or the next day (e.g., some news shows on MSNBC). The DVR will record multiple copies of the same show, unnecessarily using hard disk space.

Again, common with cable DVRs as well. Half the time you tell it to record only "new" episodes but it records every single one. Once I even had it record 2 copies of the same show - at the same time! No DVR is perfect.

Quote:


13. If DirecTV physically damages your audio video equipment on installation, they refuse all responsibility, refusing to pay for repair costs (after initially agreeing to do so and firing the tech). I'm out several hundred dollars in replacement costs.

Ah, so I think we found the motivation for your little rant here...

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Caveat emptor!

As with everything.
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post #41 of 59 Old 12-24-2008, 09:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clack View Post

THat's what I'm trying to tell you. I've selected Channels I subscribe to and it still shows a variety of channels that either I don't subscribe to or I do subscribe to but the reciever doesn't think so. Either way it's screwy.

The search issue is equally annoying.

You mean, just like it works with E*.....another company that hasn't had the coders do the same thing you claim would take 1 evening?

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1099550
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post #42 of 59 Old 12-25-2008, 09:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Beerstalker View Post

Sounds to me like Ironwood Communications did really screw this guy over, and that sucks. However I think it's pretty unfair that he is going around blasting DirecTV when this seems to be an installer issue with Ironwood Communicatons. This isn't the first time that people have had trouble with crappy install companies that DirecTV sometimes uses. Make sure DirecTV knows about the problems you had with the installer and if they get enough complaints they will stop using that company. A lot of the time you can request a different company, or buy straight from an installer company if you want to make sure you get a good installer doing the work.

Ha. Ha. Ha. Good luck requesting a different company.

I was surprised by the OPs claim that Ironwood was a DirecTV subsidiary. But a little googling shows Ironwood is owned by 180 Connect, which was acquired by DirecTV earlier this year.

I happen to live in the OPs area, and did exactly what you suggest, I found an independent installation company who knew what they were doing, and who I could have do exactly what I wanted. But it cost me hundreds of dollars to "do it right". Most people aren't prepared to pay that.

That was many years ago. Recently I had the installer come back and move my dish when my growing trees blocked the signal. He told me his company doesn't do DirecTV any more (they now mostly do commercial dishes such as for motels and gas stations). DirecTV has reduced/eliminated choice in installers.

Here is DirecTVs take on installers, I won't provide the link, I found it with Google and I'm sure you can find it also:

"The acquisition of 180 Connect enables DIRECTV to gain operational control over a large portion of its installation and service network and is an important part of our effort to continuously improve the customer experience," said Mike Palkovic, Executive Vice President, Operations, DIRECTV, Inc. "Our installation technicians are the first and often the only point of face to face contact that a customer has with DIRECTV and this merger underscores the importance we place on this interaction. We welcome 180 Connect's employees to the DIRECTV family and with its solid base of technicians in the field and strong back-office support, we believe we have a great opportunity for growth and to provide an even higher level of service that our customers have come to expect."
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post #43 of 59 Old 12-25-2008, 09:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Devereux View Post

After spending tens of hours with Ironwood/DirecTV and filing complaints with the BBB, state attorneys general's office, and FCC, it was clear that subsequent appeals would fall on deaf ears and that any continuing efforts would be an exercise in futility. Hence, posting on several sites (since it's unlikely that everyone looking for information on DirecTV would necessarily find the AVSForum.

Thanks for posting. I, for one, appreciate it. Also I think it's fine that you have complained in multiple forums. This type of "viral" information is one of the very few equalizers the "little people" have against "the man". There are very few, if any, big companies that, fundamentally, care at all about individual complaints. The only thing that has a chance of working is the "squeaky wheel".
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post #44 of 59 Old 12-25-2008, 09:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

I would suggest posting your comments in the local topic for your area.

Ironwood has 3,500 technicians in 54 branches in 22 states. In addition, they are owned by DirecTV.

In my opinion, admittedly based on information provided by just one side of the dispute, the "we don't care, we don't have to" attitude documented by the OP is more than just something local to the Vancouver office of Ironwood.
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post #45 of 59 Old 12-27-2008, 09:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beerstalker View Post

Sounds to me like Ironwood Communications did really screw this guy over, and that sucks. However I think it's pretty unfair that he is going around blasting DirecTV when this seems to be an installer issue with Ironwood Communicatons. This isn't the first time that people have had trouble with crappy install companies that DirecTV sometimes uses. Make sure DirecTV knows about the problems you had with the installer and if they get enough complaints they will stop using that company. A lot of the time you can request a different company, or buy straight from an installer company if you want to make sure you get a good installer doing the work.

The only thing DirecTV really did wrong was promise a credit and not give it to him, which happens from time to time. Did he ever talk to them about the credit again?

I disagree.

If I hire a general contractor and one of the subcontractors fails to perform adequately, I expect (and paid for) the general to resolve the issue with the sub, especially when I did not get to select the sub.

I have dealt with numerous DirecTV installation issues, including repeated no shows, not having the correct equipment, not knowing how to configure their euipment, not having adequate tools or supplies, and so on.

Ironwood is the installation company, but I hired DirecTV and they hired Ironwood. I too attempted to first work out most issues locally with Ironwood, with little response from them. I then escalated to their Denver headquarters and finally to DirecTV, escalating one of those incidents to the DirecTV office of the VP.

I still have and prefer DirecTV service, but I resent having to deal with problems that should never have occurred and people and companies that demonstrate by their actions that they could care less.

DirecTV owns these problems and must accept their responsibility and accountability. If I did not have the technical background to understand how these things should work to enable me to train their installers on the spot, I don't know whether I would have working service.

All of that said, I came to DirecTV because my Comcast cable service at the time was even worse--both the reliability and quality of the delivered signals and the competency (lack of) and customer focus (not) of their employees.

I am not impossible to please. I realize that front-line employees like CSRs and technicians are typically victims of inadequate corporate support and commitment. I hold the companies responsible, and I am respectful and pleasant but firm with their employees that I deal with.

I just want it to work without me having to manage their quality and internal accountability problems.

Dave
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post #46 of 59 Old 12-27-2008, 01:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Budget_HT View Post

I disagree.

If I hire a general contractor and one of the subcontractors fails to perform adequately, I expect (and paid for) the general to resolve the issue with the sub, especially when I did not get to select the sub.

I have dealt with numerous DirecTV installation issues, including repeated no shows, not having the correct equipment, not knowing how to configure their euipment, not having adequate tools or supplies, and so on.

Ironwood is the installation company, but I hired DirecTV and they hired Ironwood. I too attempted to first work out most issues locally with Ironwood, with little response from them. I then escalated to their Denver headquarters and finally to DirecTV, escalating one of those incidents to the DirecTV office of the VP.

I still have and prefer DirecTV service, but I resent having to deal with problems that should never have occurred and people and companies that demonstrate by their actions that they could care less.

DirecTV owns these problems and must accept their responsibility and accountability. If I did not have the technical background to understand how these things should work to enable me to train their installers on the spot, I don't know whether I would have working service.

All of that said, I came to DirecTV because my Comcast cable service at the time was even worse--both the reliability and quality of the delivered signals and the competency (lack of) and customer focus (not) of their employees.

I am not impossible to please. I realize that front-line employees like CSRs and technicians are typically victims of inadequate corporate support and commitment. I hold the companies responsible, and I am respectful and pleasant but firm with their employees that I deal with.

I just want it to work without me having to manage their quality and internal accountability problems.

Again, Directv has offices in LA, perhaps Denver and most likely Delaware.

Ironwood has operations in your state.

You can

1) Hire an attorney in LA, Denver or Delaware to sue them for damages at a cost of maybe $5k+.

or

2) Go to small claims court against Ironwood who is local for a simple filing fee with no attorney needed.

Go after Directv if you so desire (its always an option if you loose - sort of an appeal). But if you want to do it in a financially responsible way, go after Ironwood in Small Claims Court, regardless of who is owned by who.
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post #47 of 59 Old 12-27-2008, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ownersedge View Post

Quote: by Beachcomber post #7

Originally Posted by Devereux
12. Attempting to record only the new episodes of a series does not work if the same episode appears later in the day or the next day (e.g., some news shows on MSNBC). The DVR will record multiple copies of the same show, unnecessarily using hard disk space.


Same with any service that uses the same guide info (which is most of them - not a D* issue)


In 6 years times 2 DVRs, with UTV I've never had that happen. Likewise, lack of a Remind function is another big weakness, with clutter and waste of my time.

Are we to assume you used all providers and services in the past 6 years? Seems from your post you have only used 1, UTV, so your experience is very limited.
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post #48 of 59 Old 01-02-2009, 09:43 PM
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ok, just my experience with D*, take it for what it's worth, and to shorten the story i'll only tell the 2 most important details although there were other issues also.....
Went to BB and BOUGHT all the receivers I needed for my house and had installation done. A week or so later began having issues with the HD box that was in my den, all other boxes were SD. Anyway, after it went out the first time and had no tv for a day and half a tech came...took about 2 hours but looks like he fixed problem...a couple hurs after he leaves it goes out again.....again I call or a tech and I am without tv in the main room for another day or so.....next tech comes and says it's the HD box and i need to replace, except they are not allowed to carry on the truck so i have to call cust. serv and have one sent.....So I send in the HD box that i just paid a couple hundred bucks for and they send me back a downgraded box, and on top of that it was a refurb...... long story longer, after another day i had same problem...called again and another tech comes and finally fixes the problem, which wasnt the box at all.....so i call CS again and they wont send me an equivalent box of what i had bought not 2 weeks earlier!
So I dealt with all this and techs that had no clue, and spending probably 20 hours on the phone with them over the next 2 weeks trying to get what i paid for....All they kept doing was listen to the details and then transfer me to "someone authorized to handle this"....I would spend 2 - 3 hours every time i called just caught on the telephone hamster wheel of customer service. The last time I called and got nowhere I gave up but after talking with a good share of idiots in the process i told them to mark on my record that as soon as FIOS was available I was going to switch.
Abot 7-8 months later I had fios installed and the minute it was up and running and the fios tech left i ws on the phone with D*, canceling the service. Well, the guy in that dept whose job it s to try to get you to stay was offering me heavy discounts. I just kept cutting him off to say just cancel me. He asked why i was so determined to leave and i told him the story. Then I laid the kicker on him. I said can you explain to me why I bought my boxes but yet on my bill for almost a year I am being charged 5 bucks per box rental fee. He said that is their policy no matter if you bought the box outright or not. It is sort of a user fee.
My reply was "now do you see why I am leaving"....after a 3 second pause he gave me a deflated "yes"
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post #49 of 59 Old 01-03-2009, 12:36 PM
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What DirecTV box did you "BUY"? The only one I know of that you could ever buy (at least of the MPEG 4 boxes) was the HR21-Pro. It ran around $600.

If you had the HR21, HR22, etc you did not "BUY" it, you paid the $199 up front leasing fee that everyone else who has that box pays. Sometimes DirecTV offers rebates etc. that reduce that up front lease so you might not have had to pay the full $199. I got two HD DVRs for $99 each when I signed up, but this was an up front lease and I do not own the boxes. I also have to pay a monthly lease fee for each box after the first box. If I cancel my service I have to return the boxes. DirecTV switched to the leased box system a few years ago.
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post #50 of 59 Old 01-03-2009, 01:31 PM
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im not sure what model, this was approx 18 months ago.....but hr21 sounds familiar....
i did not know that 199.00 was a "leasing fee"...but even with that and then still paying for each box monthly is ridiculous....thats like going to a restaurant and paying to walk through the door and then paying for the meal....how many times would i go back to that restaurant? answer is none
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post #51 of 59 Old 01-03-2009, 01:33 PM
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by the way, after i canceled service they never asked for the equipment back. So that is one of the reasons i assumed i had bought the stuff, not leased and I know the boxes weren't outdated
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post #52 of 59 Old 01-04-2009, 12:18 PM
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I guess sometimes they don't bother asking for the units back if they are getting phased out, so that might be why they didn't ask for yours back. The HR20 was replaced by the HR21, which was replaced by the HR22, and they are soon to be replaced by the HR23.
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post #53 of 59 Old 01-04-2009, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

It's the right forum, it's just too bad there are way too many, pro big business, upper class elitists here.

We don't need political tripe in this forum.

Speaking for myself, I am pro-business. However, D* has some serious issues with the quality of their installers. I had a new installation performed in August, and it STILL isn't right, after multiple calls to the local shop and D* support, as well as efforts made on their support forum (which is completely worthless, IME).

I won't go into detail, but for an example, the last time the D* installer came out to our house he grounded the installation to our main gas pipe. Brilliant!
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post #54 of 59 Old 01-06-2009, 05:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ziggy29 View Post

Either way -- this being a new user's first post, it would be reasonable to suspect some ulterior motives.

Why do you say that? Is there some sort of hazing/initiation that needs to go on before a poster's words can be believed? Last month, I bought my first Blackberry; a Bold. I returned it after 6 days, as the sound was muffled on the other end; people couldn't hear me well. I liked the phone, so much so that before I returned it, I posted a message on BlackBerryForum, asking if anyone else had experienced this. After getting no response, I figured I had gotten a bad one, so returned it for a replacement. The second one had a loose battery, causing it to reboot itself whenever it was even slightly jostled. Two bad phones in 6 days was enough for me to say the heck with BB, and I returned it and got my money back. BlackBerryForum has a Rants and Raves section, and I posted a thread that detailed my problems, wished everyone else luck with theirs, (the battery issue was definitely not isolated to me), and said I was done with BB.

The resulting messages would make you think that I had insulted someone's Momma! A recurring theme was "good luck with your Sidekick". I never mentioned a Sidekick; have never even looked at one, so I can only imagine that the Sidekick is deemed to be inferior by those big, burly, Blackberry users! Pathetic...

If there is a threshold that one needs to be past on message boards, so as to not be called a troll, can we ask for our post count to be at that level when we sign up? Like when you start up a checking account, and order your checks?
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post #55 of 59 Old 01-07-2009, 04:15 PM
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I am thankful for original poster, these are issues that i would like to know as i am deciding
between Direct and dish. I am concerned about locking in for 2 years with direct,and paying premium price once my 1year special price is up. IS dish no commitment plan for real
or is it some hidden contract.
Not sure if i am a troll as this is my first post, pls correct me if i am thanks
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post #56 of 59 Old 01-07-2009, 05:10 PM
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Dish's "no commitment" is real for sure - I believe you just don't get the installation fee refunded. It used to be $75.00's worth of the fee (which is all or some of it, I don't remember) - I don't know if that's changed.

Make sure you specify you don't want it though, or they'll probably try to stick you with it otherwise.

Another thing - most people probably assume you have to get the DVR with the Turbo Packages - you don't - you can just get a non-DVR single or dual-tuner if you want. And there will be no fee for the first one of either of those, like there would be with a DVR.
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post #57 of 59 Old 01-17-2009, 08:21 AM
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Rammitinski
Thank you for your reply, its greatly appreciated
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post #58 of 59 Old 01-18-2009, 09:05 AM
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I can certainly sympathize with the original poster and others who have had problems with DirecTV. I have been a DirecTV subscriber for 12 years and have had nothing but bad experiences with DirecTV customer service and their installers. I could go on for pages about the many broken promises, no-shows, defective equipment, unauthorized charges, etc. I stay with DirecTV only because I get HD DNS stations that I would be unable to get with Dish or Cable. I recommend to all my friends that they try someone else. When all 4 of our local network channels finally go HD, I will be very willing to change to another provider.
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post #59 of 59 Old 01-18-2009, 10:42 AM
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I've had DTV for 5+ years and while I wish they did things differently it's the only service that has what I want and they do it pretty good. The OP is grinding his axe and venting IMHO.

I'd grade DTV B- for 2008.
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