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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I seem to be getting confusing reports from all these different posts...


I plan to buy an STB in the next month or so and have NO chance for OTA HD broadcasts at the current time.


I DO understand programming differences between Dish and DirecTV and have read in earnest all the comments on pros and cons between them.


My question has more to do with which unit might marry up to my TV the best given its 4:3 shape and non-automatic squeeze capability. Will all units perform roughly the same?


I can handle and expect the black bars at top/bottom during HD broadcasts, but on the SIDES as well? That kind of defeats the purpose.


Thanks for any info you can give me.


Michael
 

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I too have the TN55X81 and am using the Toshiba DST-3000 STB. I have been very pleased with the STB. One of the really nice things if you don't want to use a 3rd party remote like the Pronto is that the DST-3000 remote can also control all features of the TV -- such as switching between inputs, user menu, etc.


The DST-3000 displays non-HD material either thru the component outputs or through the S-video and RF outputs -- but like all of the other STB's I am aware of, it won't simultaneously provide a signal on the component outputs and the S-video/rf outputs (an inconvenience if you want to watch HD and tape the same show in SD using a VCR).


The DST-3000 gives the user the ability to view HD material 3 ways: 1) 16:9 mode with gray bars at the top and bottom of the screen, 2) 16:9 stretch mode in which the vertical height of the HD picture is stretched so that the 16:9 picture fills your entire screen, and 3) 4:3 mode with the left and right sides cropped. You have the ability to change modes by pressing two succesive buttons -- ACTION, 8.


I think there is a PDF file of the users manual on Directv's web site. You may want to download and read it for more info. I know there are at least a few others who have the TN55X81 and the DST-3000 so let us know if you have specific questions.


I have never subscribed to E* so I can't compare their HD offerings. The only HD things you'll find on DTV are 1 channel of HBO, PPV offerings between midnight and 6 am, and a HD demo loop on teh PPV channel the remainder of the day. On the left coast, I think the PPV is around the clock. I think E* has the same plus a HD showtime channel.
 
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