U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Virginia > Northern Virginia
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 08-21-2011, 12:03 AM
 
Location: Mountain View, CA
1,152 posts, read 2,842,425 times
Reputation: 1056

Advertisements

Hey all -

I am in the process of purchasing a condo - close in late SEPT, move in early OCT. I have FIOS at my current place and pay about 118/mo for internet and standard TV package (1 HD-DVR and 1 HD box). I do not have, and do not want, a land line.

Unfortunately, FIOS will not be available at my condo. Something about Verizon wanting the association to pay to have it put in the buildings and the association telling Verizon to pound sand. So it doesn't sound like it will be coming anytime soon, if ever.

Thus, my other "standard" option is Cox. I had Cox prior to having FIOS, and it is solid in this area (Fair Oaks / Fair Lakes). I will use them for internet regardless, but it looks like their prices have gone off the deep end for TV. It looks like once I add equipment on (convenient how they don't show equipment in their quoted package price - as if anyone has Cable without a Cable box) I'm looking at around 117 for the first 6mos then almost 150 thereafter. That's insane.

So I look at DirecTV. Their deal is 45 for the first 12 mos, then about 82. So with Cox internet, it's more like 95 / 130. So DirecTV is cheaper - and offers superior service in terms of channels and features so I'm leaning that way. That said, I've never had satellite before and I have some questions/concerns.

1. First some notes. Yes my balcony faces south. I will have 2 TVs - 1 in Living Room with HD DVR and 1 in bedroom with HD box.

2. The whole "losing service during storms" thing. Is it as bad as people say? My dish will be on a balcony so will be at least partially protected from rain and snow and wind - if that helps?

3. How does the wiring work for DirecTV? Do they use your existing coax (keep in mind I'll have Cox for internet)? Or do they install new wires direct from dish to boxes? If so - how do they install these wires? I don't want wires lying across the floor of my condo!

4. My condo association does not allow dishes to be physically attached to the balcony. So you have to use a "bucket filled with cement and a metal pole" (because that's so much classier than bolting the dish on professionally - gotta love HOAs). Is this something the installer will be prepared to provide if I let them know of the requirement in advance?

5. What are thoughts on DTV Overall? Is it good service? Or is the hassle not worth it and I should just bite the bullet on Cox?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 08-21-2011, 02:38 AM
 
Location: Virginia-Shenandoah Valley
6,550 posts, read 10,823,615 times
Reputation: 5545
I've had Direct TV for several years now and have been happy with it. I've never had cable but I've heard enough complaining from people who have/had it to know I would not want to try it out.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-21-2011, 03:07 AM
 
3,164 posts, read 6,114,320 times
Reputation: 1264
I have DishTV and it's better than Direct. I can record something and watch it any room, and the recorder has two channels so you can record to shows at once. Direct TV came out to my house and declared it too big, with too many TVs, too complicated and suggested that I call Dish! I did, and they were wonderful. They worked very hard to wire up everything, just like I wanted it done. We've had it almost 3 years and have been very happy with it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-21-2011, 03:13 AM
 
Location: Mountain View, CA
1,152 posts, read 2,842,425 times
Reputation: 1056
Quote:
Originally Posted by Denton56 View Post
I have DishTV and it's better than Direct. I can record something and watch it any room, and the recorder has two channels so you can record to shows at once. Direct TV came out to my house and declared it too big, with too many TVs, too complicated and suggested that I call Dish! I did, and they were wonderful. They worked very hard to wire up everything, just like I wanted it done. We've had it almost 3 years and have been very happy with it.
Thanks for the reply! DirecTV actually offers the same multi-room DVR now. And my place won't be complex - 2 TVs and 2 boxes in a 1070 sqft condo .

I've looked at Dish too, and their prices look good - but it seems like DirecTV just offers more for the money right now, especially for a sports fan.

That said - I Suspect a lot of my questions would be the same answer for either provider, so if you have thoughts please let me know!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-21-2011, 04:52 AM
 
121 posts, read 216,933 times
Reputation: 92
I've been a DirectTV customer for 10 years. My home in GA has 6 TV's and all of them have DirectTV, along with 2 DVRs. I can record shows from any HDBox in the house and watch recordings from any DVR in the house.

I am have recently rented an apartment in NOVA and the first thing I asked is whether or not they have DirectTV access. They have a really good special right now with the NFL Sunday Ticket. It's Free for new subscribers.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-21-2011, 05:03 AM
 
448 posts, read 863,809 times
Reputation: 215
don't invest in the big sporting packages most of it's blacked out and or commericals. and after having the idots put the dish on a plastic vent pipe so that everytime the wind blew i would get half of my channels in the livingroom and the half in the bedroom never mind the fact the drilled the holes threw the middle of my wall and not at the bottom of the wall where they should have drilled em. and there dvr kept breaking down every 6 months and pixelizing. yea i trust dtvas far as i could **** em out my ass
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-21-2011, 05:05 AM
 
448 posts, read 863,809 times
Reputation: 215
DIRECTV Still Graded 'F' By BBB
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-21-2011, 06:28 AM
 
371 posts, read 729,865 times
Reputation: 176
I've had Comcast, DirecTV, and Dish, and DirecTV was my least favorite between them all. This was a few years ago, but DirecTV was not very reliable. When there was a bad storm, I'd lose reception. Dish would very occasionaly do this, but it seemed to be quite often with DirecTV. Also, DirecTV's on demand wasn't very good. You hooked up the box to the internet and then downloaded the movie, which I had DSL and it wouldn't download as fast as you could watch it, meaning you had to start downloading and then wait a half an hour to watch it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-21-2011, 07:17 AM
 
Location: Northern Virginia
4,489 posts, read 9,545,108 times
Reputation: 3656
We have Dish Network and are pretty happy with them. Yes, in a massive thunderstorm we'll lose signal for a few minutes, and in snowmaggedon we went a couple days without anything (because it was on our roof, buried under 3 feet of snow!), but a standard rain doesn't do anything.

The Dish DVR is fantastic--I could record every episode of 30 seasons of TV and still have space, I think. It's just huge. And it sorts it all so nicely so that it's easy to find and watch stuff. In the winter, I keep a solid amount of stuff backed up on the DVR, so that if a blizzard hits and I'm stuck at home, there's still stuff to watch.

I also like that you can make favorites lists of channels too. DH has his list, I have mine (so I don't have to scroll through 24 channels of ESPN to find my HGTV )

The only thing I miss with satellite is that I don't have free "on demand" anymore. Every once in a while I would use that feature for comcast, but dish doesn't have it that I've found, unless I'm willing to pay $8 for a movie that I could get for $1 at redbox.

For installation, no, they don't use your existing connections. At least, they didn't here. My house was wired for FIOS and Cox, and they had to put in a third set of connections for dish.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-21-2011, 08:23 AM
 
Location: Aldie, VA
199 posts, read 601,361 times
Reputation: 92
For the install, I doubt the installer will build your bucket for you, considering the time it might take for the concrete to dry, before he can mount the dish to it.

Yes they can use your existing coax wiring, but I don't think they can if you are also going to have another service, such has Cox over it as well. I don't think there is a way to multiplex the two signals on the same line. The installer will install new coax lines, fished through walls, but I think there is a limit to the number of walls they go through before it starts to cost money. How you decide to do this may depend on where your coax comes into your condo, as I imagine, the Cox hookup is in some central location in the complex. Do you have some sort of coax distro panel that you can change connections around? If not you may be stuck with the Cox on the existing coax.

As for rain fade, yeah it does happen, and it won't matter that your dish is covered. We usually lost signal right before a big strom, if the clouds were really heavy, but then we'd get signal back once it started to rain.

I believe the reason why they don't let you bolt the dish on to the balcony is partly a liability issue, and partly the fact that I think the structure is common property. Lets face it, not all of the "professionals" are really professionals.

I had DTV for 10 years, but switched to FiOS when I moved. Switched because its a lot cheaper with my phone/internet/tv. I was a happy with DTV. One nice thing about them is you can call customer service every couple of months and they will have something free to give you (HBO or SHO for 3 months, or a discount, etc). And right now, being a sports fan, you can't be the free NFL ST.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Virginia > Northern Virginia
Similar Threads
View detailed profiles of:
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. | Please obey Forum Rules | Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top