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Consider me part of the brotherhood, finally !!!


Here is my setup -


Toshiba 34HF81 Widescreen TV

Toshiba DST-3000 STB

DirecTV Oval Dish

Radio Shack Double Bow Tie Indoor Antenna


Equipment bought on the web and on it's way -


Denon AVR-2802

Energy Take 5 Speakers

Panasonic RP-56 DVD player


After posting here in this forum and getting responses from so many of you, particularly my SF neighbors I decided to GO FOR IT and had the 34HF81 delivered last night. I went to Video Only in San Mateo last Wednesday armed with all the new info I had from these forums. I first went to Sears in Hillsdale but they didn't have the Tosh TV but it didn't deter me from telling the Video Only salesman that Sears had it, was willing to match their price plus give me 10% off. VO's floor price was $2299. It took almost an hour of negotiating but my final price was $2000 for the TV and $396 for the STB (floor price - $449). The dish was $139 but I told them I could easily get it for $100 on EBay. He said they would match that and he offered free installation. When he found out I already had a subscription, he said their installers would not do the install unless it was a new activation. Without my prompting he offered to take off another $40 since I would be doing the installation myself. Final price of the dish became just $60 !


While waiting patiently for delivery (they didn't end up coming till 8:30 PM), I climbed onto the roof to install the oval dish and the lovely sight of Sutro Tower was right there just over a mile away. Install was easy and locking onto a signal in the low 90s took just 5 minutes for both satellites.


When the TV finally arrived and set up I called DirecTV to activate the new STB and add HBO. HDNet just blew me away !!! The documentary on the Coast Guard is just stunning. I also watched a little bit of Band of Brothers and Dead Bang. Although HBO-HD was very good, it didn't compare to HDNet. Thank you, Mark Cuban !


Now came time to try the indoor antenna, in addition to the RS Double Bow Tie, I had another RS Rabbit Ear Amplified antenna. At first the amplified one got a better signal but it just wasn't steady enough. I had to constantly move it around and the only channel I could consistently lock onto was ABC so I watched Ransom. Switching between 7 and 7-1 showed the dramatic difference in picture quality. My wife was impressed that she could Mel Gibson's pores on his face. After the movie I decided to try the double bow tie again and finally found the secret. I ended up putting it in the closet. Now I get a great signal for CBS, ABC and PBS. NBC is still hit and miss but I think the closet floor is where it will lock on. My signal strength, I believe is actually more than 100 because the DST-3000 signal strength tone is almost solid instead of rapid intermittent. Can't wait to watch CBS's monday night lineup.


I'm still learning all the different features of the TV and STB and quite often use the wrong remote. As soon as my sound system arrives I will run Video Essentials and fine tune everything. The color is quite good right now and I'm fairly happy with Theater Mode 3 for 4:3 broadcasts. There is a slight vertical bowing on the DTV menu which I don't notice unless I have the menu on the screen.


Thank you all on this forum who have answered my questions the last 2 weeks !!!


Can't wait for the Dallas Mavericks Cheerleader Tryouts on HDNet today at 2 PM PST.
 

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Congratulations ny888. And thanks for the update. Happy watching.


-Curtis
 
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