[mythtv-users] Cable or dish

Brian Wood beww at beww.org
Fri Dec 17 20:42:32 UTC 2010

On Friday, December 17, 2010 12:12:57 pm Mike Gibson wrote:
> Hi, I've been using MythTV for awhile on regular OTA for a while now.
> I'm currently using a pcHDTV HD-5500.  My setup is dead simple now
> with just an antenna plugged into the HD-5500.  I don't record analog
> anything.  It's all digital.
> My wife now wants to get some form of cable, dish, or some paid TV
> service.  I have absolutely no experience with this.  The only time
> I've had cable is when I lived in an apartment and it was provided
> via the "magic plug" on the wall.  I've never dealt with a set top
> box or anything like it.
> So I'm looking for any recommendations on what sort of service to
> get. We're not picky, just want more channels.  What is going to
> make this process as easy as possible?  I'd like to just be able to
> unplug the antenna and plug in the "magic plug", update my channel
> setup and be off and running.  IR blasters and so forth scare me a
> bit so I'd like to avoid that.  A set top box is ok with me as long
> as it's easy to install.
> I live in the Salt Lake City, Utah area where we seem to have
> Comcast, Dish Network and DirecTV.

One thing to consider is if you are using the cable company for internet 
access you will usually get a better price for the internet if you also 
subscribe to the TV service, and vice versa of course. 

The cable companies like to sell "triple play" combos of TV, Internet 
and Telephone service (VOIP), but buying VOIP from the cable company is 
rarely a good deal IMHO, go directly to Net2Phone if you want VOIP 
service, they provide the service for most of the cable companies 
offering it anyway, and are generally cheaper then paying a premium to 
the cable company to re-sell the service.

Many local telephone companies offer similar deals on a landline phone, 
DSL internet and DirectTV, I think Qwest does this, and serves SLC.

As for whether TV from cable or satellite is better, it depends on what 
channels you want more than anything, you're best off pricing the 
services you want from the different providers.

In spite of what the cable companies will tell you, satellite TV is 
rarely bothered by weather, though you will get some weather-related 
outages, and might need to clean the snow out of your dish occasionally.

So price out all the services you need, including internet, phone and TV 
and see what it costs, after any initial "deals" have expired.

IR blasters are no big deal, you do see a lot of problems posted here, 
but remember mostly the people having problems post here, there are lots 
of people who have no problems with it at all.

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