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I have the money now to buy an HD STB for my DirecTV system. With Christmas fast approaching, wouldn't it make sense to wait another 2 months for prices to drop? (I could always use my savings to buy something else, just trying to help America!)
 

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Two months probably wont make any difference. Two years maybe.


This whole deal with the newer DirecTv HD STB's and pricing reminds me of when DirecTv first launched. A bone basic system in the summer of '94 was about 750.00 For quite awhile now though they've been basically giving those away.


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Dan


Mitsubishi 55805

Dish 6000

DirecTv/Mitsu SR-HD400

Evu 6000
 

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It is too true. I waited for the first generation Sony stb way back then and paid $1000 for my first Direct Tv system.


Compare that to the BlockBuster system I just had installed for $10. It all averages out, though.


I would take advantage of the Video Only deal on the Toshiba dst 3000 right now (I did.)


Shelly
 

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how about,

Instead of tax rebate checks

We all got free recievers

That would get the ball rolling....


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KET
 

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TiVo / PVRs are gonna rule the holidays in 2001 (meaning price points below $199). HDTV tuners / 'the infamous set top box' will rule the Xmas of 2002.

 

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I would be surprised if they weren't pretty cheap by next spring. There is not much to the box. An alternative might be a non-OTA box (which I would like very much since I can't get a signal in the mountains) for less money. They store I tried to buy mine from guessed that they would drop in price soon (not based on any inside info, just gut feel).
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by mdanese:
I would be surprised if they weren't pretty cheap by next spring. There is not much to the box. An alternative might be a non-OTA box (which I would like very much since I can't get a signal in the mountains) for less money. They store I tried to buy mine from guessed that they would drop in price soon (not based on any inside info, just gut feel).
Sounds like you'd be a good candidate for Dish Network's model 6000. Out of the box, it's Dish-only, no OTA. OTA capability can be added later if desired with the extra 8vsb module, but it's not required to make satellite HD work.




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Robert Simandl ... somewhere near St. Louis

[email protected]
 

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I think prices will drop, but not necessarily as fast as DIRECTV STBs did. When Echostart started, DIRECTV drastically increased their per-box subsidy to combat DISH's low prices. There is noone to subsidize ATSC STBs except the already-subsidized sat versions.


I also think retailers will always need higher markups due to the overhead that will be needed to handle returns from those who cannot receive an exceptable over-the-air signal. (Reception is very difficult to predict.)


Also, planned enhancements to the standard to improve reception will increase complexity beyond what we see today, so that will reduce downward price pressure.


In my opinion, the only way to see prices drop dramatically is to mandate receivers in all sets sold (perhaps above a certain size or something) in order to get the economies of scale needed for price drops.


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Rich Peterson

DBS Consumer Guide Author
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Rich Peterson:
I think prices will drop, but not necessarily as fast as DIRECTV STBs did. When Echostart started, DIRECTV drastically increased their per-box subsidy to combat DISH's low prices. There is noone to subsidize ATSC STBs except the already-subsidized sat versions.


I also think retailers will always need higher markups due to the overhead that will be needed to handle returns from those who cannot receive an exceptable over-the-air signal. (Reception is very difficult to predict.)


Also, planned enhancements to the standard to improve reception will increase complexity beyond what we see today, so that will reduce downward price pressure.


In my opinion, the only way to see prices drop dramatically is to mandate receivers in all sets sold (perhaps above a certain size or something) in order to get the economies of scale needed for price drops.
Mandate receivers for all those poor folks who can't get a signal? Adding insult to injury. Adding the other modulation system to the current one is suggested to cost only $8. Adding the other modulation system receiver to a TV would cost about $50. What would it cost for an 8-VSB receiver in the box? Last summer before Congress the industry choked on the suggestion that it could be done for less than $250. And what if it doesn't receive? Can I bring the set back and try another and another and another? How about my money back. The CEA is not against this proposal for nothing.


But more importantly how can you justify forcing all those who have passed on buying a receiver till now to buy one? If I had the choice of $25 or the NTSC tuner in a current $250 TV I would take the $25. I have satellite and can't receive NTSC in Manhattan why should I have to spend the $25 for NTSC or the $xxx for 8-VSB if I don't want it?


Also from my economic studies it would be interesting to see where the supply demand curves cross when you add $250 to the average TV. How about sales down 70%. How about a black market in TVs without receivers coming ashore from China.


BTW reception is easy to predict in Australia.




 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Rich Peterson:


In my opinion, the only way to see prices drop dramatically is to mandate receivers in all sets sold (perhaps above a certain size or something) in order to get the economies of scale needed for price drops.
Economics of scale needed to get prices to drop? Explain the price Australians are paying for their FIRST HDTV receiver? No economics of scale there! Why are they paying less than $400 while the latest Zenith comes out at $1100? What will Austalian prices be after the four years we have had here? Well they are already talking of a $176 HDTV receiver. Very doable.


If we want lower prices for receivers and a price for an internal receiver to be low enough and usfull enough for people to accept it we have to allow the Australian system here. Not the triple cast but most of the rest.

 

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I would like to see some documentation to substantiate the above claims. Considering the affiliation with broadband wireless of the post, I will let readers decide for themselves.


Where do you get the retail of the new Zenith as $1100? I have seen it only listed at $799.



IMHO, instead of upgrading servers, the forum would be better served if some of the rhetoric gets upgraded .



As far as set top boxes dropping this year in price, I don't expect it, considering the removal of DirecTv subsidies to manufacturers (soon). Basically I only expect prices to be about the same. Next year (2002) I expect prices to drop .


 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Gary Merson
I would like to see some documentation to substantiate the above claims. Considering the affiliation with broadband wireless of the post, I will let readers decide for themselves.


Where do you get the retail of the new Zenith as $1100? I have seen it only listed at $799.

Actually I see that the new Zenith is selling for $744 so I was wrong. Don't know where I saw $1100.


On the subject of Aussie pricing I have to refer you to aus.tv.digital where I find prices mentioned and rumors of prices. Can't confirm the $176 but know it is possible. I did see a quote of $8 for adding the other modulation to an 8-VSB receiver, can't confirm that, it may be low. The $50 for adding other modualtion to a monitor is probably high.
 

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Quote:
Actually I see that the new Zenith is selling for $744 so I was wrong. Don't know where I saw $1100.
Zenith recently raised the list price of this STB to $1199 (see this thread ), although the street price will obviously be less.


This kind of price increase certainly doesn't bode well for the prospect of cheap STBs anytime soon.
 

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I'm confused about all the threads on this site about the Zenith STB. What's so special about it? From what I've read, it sounds like incremental improvements at best for a higher price. No digital connections or anything special about it. Plus Zenith isn't exactly the best known name for HT, so why all the fuss?
 

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An HDTV OTA receiver can be built right now for $100. The problem is that the only market for it is Australia and they only have 20 million population. That receiver could be sold for $200 if there was a big enough market like the US. That receiver would work without the need for a directional antenna and in most cases would receive the signal indoors with a simple bow tie or monopole antenna. The future cost of this receiver would even be less and it's ability to receive will become even more remarkable.


At the same time as we have seen, protected by the monopoly that they bought in D.C., the 8-VSB producers will not lower but raise the price of their receivers. We American consumers are seen by the Consumer Electronics Association and it's member as world class suckers.


Not only do we beleive their press releases of 1999 that 8-VSB works mobile and can easily be received in high multipath environments of the big cities but we support them as they rip us off. We wait avidly for there next receiver at a higher price and hope that it may bring in one more station.


When will we learn? Maybe when they do away with HDTV in favor of mobile and datacasting. Wouldn't that be ironic?


What would happen to Zenith's prices if they had to compete with $200 receivers that really worked? What would happen to the DTV transition?


It just might take off.
 

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In a conference call yesterday DirecTV discussed several changes which will affect DirecTV STB pricing.


All manufacturing partners will have their manufacturing subsidy eliminated in first quarter 2002. They expect to save $100 million in 2002 from this change.


DirecTV is currently negotiating new agreements with the large CE retailers. DirecTV wants to have the purchaser make a one year commitment for service at time of sale. If a customer does not make that commitment he will be expected to pay higher equipment prices. Retailers will be compensated more for new customers. Retailers may start offering leasing programs.


As a side note, access cards are going to be swapped out. This will not be announced until the swap out is under way. DirecTV's cost for a card is about $10.
 
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