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Discussion Starter #1
Ok i just realised that i'm moving into my new house in 6 days and i still have nothing arranged in terms of TV signal. I want to get HD satellite, probably Dish but i'm not sure if i can afford to buy all the hardware right now. That means i would have to pay for cable installation and use it for a few months before getting sat - i don't really want to do that. So i need some info about satellite so i can decide tomorrow i should schedule an appointment with my cable provider or not. So i have several questions


1. I heard i need a special dish for HDTV. Does that mean i need a second dish, in addition to a regular one, or just a higher quality dish?

2. How much does the HD dish cost?

3. If i need a second dish for HD, shouldn't i be able to just buy a regular dish and an HD-ready DSS box and use the system for SDTV for now? I could buy the HD dish and the HD decoder when i have more money.

4. What are some of the popular HD antennas and HD-ready DSS boxes. Note that i don't need a PVR - my HTPC will handle that.


Ok that about covers it. Thank you!
 

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You only need one dish. In order to receive HD, it needs to be a 24X18 oval dish. You can pick one up at any major electronic retailer (Best Buy, Circuit City, RAdio Shack, etc.). I don't know much about DISH, but I have DirecTV. You only need one STB (Set Top Box), not two. The HD STBs also receive regular sat as well, as well as HD. With DirecTV there are only two HD channels at present, 199 (HDNET) and 509 (HBO). I believe that DISH has a Showtime HD.


There are several DirecTV HD STBs to choose from. Most of the major STB manufacturers make one (RCA, Sony, Toshiba). They are quite a bit more money than regular STBs, but they also do one other thing. Your terrestrial antenna or Cable provider (assuming your cable provider sends an HD signal) hooks right up to the HD STB and converts the signal to the appropriate format (depending upon the STB) and most will even put your terrestrial channels right on the program guide.


It is important not to buy an HD TV with the decoder built into the unit. Most of the manufacturers make their TV's "HD Upgradeable" or "Compatible" with an appropriate STB. Don't get one wiht the HD converter built in, as this will lock you into a format and greatly reduces your flexibility. Make sure the TV has three-wire compoent connections for the STB (RGB or Y,Cr,Cb) as this will provide truer HD picture.


I personally like the Toshiba STB (DST-3000). I used to have the Sony (HD100), but that unit had lip-synch problems with one of my local channels so I switched. These units cost around $500-$700, whereas normal DirecTV STB's cost around or under $200.


With respect to an HD antenna - there is no such thing! Don't let anyone fool you into buying an "HD Terrestrial Antenna". Local HD signals are broadcast over standard UHF/VHF bands, and a good quality terrestrial antenna will usually suffice. It is important to know where your local channels broadcast from (the antenna farm), how far away it is from you, the signal type and strength, etc. Depending upon how far you are from the signal, how many obstructions you have to go through, etc., will determine the quality ($$) of the antenna that you need. Most people have found it necessary to purchase a pre-amp with their antenna (a mast mounted signal booster). Personally, I am in the Atlanta area and am about 25 miles from the antenna farms. I used a Channel Master Antenna with a Channel Master PreAmp in my attic, and get nearly perfect reception. The antenna, preamp, mast, cabling and installation cost me around $250. However, some people have had great luck with simple rabbit ears!


Hope this helps.
 

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1. You need an 18" dish in addition to the 20" Dish500.

2. Any 18" dish with a dual LNB works. Check Ebay for the best price.

3. Yes.

4. Search this forum for antennas. Since you suggested Dish in in your post, they only have the HD6000 receiver. If you decide to go with DirecTV, ignore everything above.


-Robert
 

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Discussion Starter #4
OK so i need one dish for DirecTV and two for Dish?
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by d!abolic
OK so i need one dish for DirecTV and two for Dish?
Yup, one dish for DirecTV for both SDTV and HDTV and two dishes for Dish if you want HD.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Ok great thanks.
 
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