After a Month of Subscription, My VOOM Evaluation and yours?

S

Sean Mota

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
19,039
1,738
New York City
I have been a VOOM subscriber for a month now. My installation was done on November 23, 2003 and today is December 24, 2003. Where does VOOM stands with me? Where does it stands with you as a subscriber? What is it that you like/dislike? What is it that you would love to see or not see?

21 Exclusive Channels:

The content of the 21 exclusives are repeated constantly. I was one of the first that said that the movie selection of Cinema 10 will need to change to make it worthwhile. Now a month into VOOM, movies are an endless loop that I care very little about. Being that they own AMC and IFC, I do not see why they have not selected a better movie selection or have more HD transfer by now. I am sure I am not the first to think about this and VOOM knows about it as well. Also, the OAR issue. If VOOM leaves the movies in their OAR, the movie will keep better quality. This policy of cropping their movies need to change as it will keep people that are very enthusiastic about HD away. Those of us that already have VOOM and care about keeping the OAR of movies are not very happy.

The problem with the Worldsport channel is that these events that we have been watching are all taped. There are no live feeds. Most of us care very little about events in the past unless we are told that this is a Classic Sport Channel. The model for this channel will need to change in order to be successful. VOOM needs to bring live events. I watched half of the Japanese Baseball World Series and really liked it. I wish we could see recent games and not games that were played back in October of 2003.

Newsbytes: Will debut in January 2004 and I expect this channel to be a big hit. See my links to the accuweather release they had at http://www.satelliteguys.us/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4871 and the job recruiting that VOOM was doing http://www.satelliteguys.us/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4861

Ultra-HD has potential from a modeling/Styling point of view, but it needs more content.

Animania recently started showing different series of cartoons.

Monsters-HD is a real good channel with a variety of movies. I spent a lot of time watching movies here.

Epics-HD has potential but it needs more variety.

Rush-HD I do not have an opinion yet. Have not watched a whole lot of it but the few programs have been excellent. Again right now it is an endless loop.

MOOV-HD Everybody agrees that this a waste of bandwith.

Gallery and Treasure I can live without and should be deleted from their lineup.

Rave-HD Could be a good hit but it needs content.


In conclusion, 3 out of 21 channels, iMHO, should be removed. The others have potential if more content is added.

The other HD channels, I will wait until 2/1/04. I have been waiting for E* or D* to add Bravo-HD+ since last July. E* and D* do not add HD channels as they are launch either. So VOOM at least have said that by 2/1/04, we should expect all these other additional HD channels. How about the others HD channels that will be launch? I am sure VOOM realizes that getting contract with these new HD channels and keeping and increasing HD content on their 21 (assuming they can replace those 3 channels) channels is a must. A nice addition was Starz-HD and TMC-HD.

SD programming maybe the weak link but at one point or another (and this applies to everyone) one must make a decision as to what's important to you SD or HD. VOOM will never be able to compete in the SD arena given their lack of space. I do not see how they can compete in quantity with E* or D*. Instead they should concentrate in keeping a good amount of SD quality channels.

Sears and Intalls Inc. a total fiasco. VOOM will have another 4 partners as already mentioned in January. there have been communication problems with all the parties involved as I was a victim of the installation problems. The problem was resolved. Installs Inc called me and apologyze for it and VOOM made sure that the installation procceded very smoothly.

My VOOM receiver has been working very well. My OTA has been working well with all my local mapping. No, it was not from the beginning but after sending information to Wilt. He assigned my zipcode to the people working on the OTA mapping and in three days I had all my local channnels.

In conclusion, VOOM will tweak and turn and I believe will come out with a strong hand. I am willing to stay until 2/1/04 and make a more elaborate conclusion as to whether they will fail or not on 2/1/04.
 
C

compson

SatelliteGuys Family
Supporting Founder
Dec 12, 2003
77
0
Gallery and Treasure are the only exclusive channels I've watched. Go figure. There have been things on the Epics channel I would have watched if the times had been convenient.
 
S

Sean Mota

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
19,039
1,738
New York City
compson said:
Gallery and Treasure are the only exclusive channels I've watched. Go figure. There have been things on the Epics channel I would have watched if the times had been convenient.


So you really like these two channels. I hardly watch them because right now they are on a 3 hours loop of programming. I enjoyed some of the collection shows.
 
S

Sean Mota

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
19,039
1,738
New York City
What to look for in January for VOOM?

In my opinion, I expect the addition of new HD channels. Newsbytes should launch 24/7 and get rid of the weather map. We have already seen Animania & Rush improved their programming. It looks like CINEMA 10 will improve programming in January. So everything looks very promising and positive for us VOOMERS as we look forward to January 2004.

A nice addition that VOOM can offer us will be a PVR in first quarter of 2004. E* and D* will already have an HD PVR by first quarter. I think VOOM needs to act quickly on this one to remain competitive in this arena. I do not know how feasible this is.

Another positive thing about VOOM is the PG of locals through the STB (DSR550). It is very convenient to look at the PG without having to go to the internet to find out which programs will be in HD locally or even for channels like Starz-HD and TMC-HD. I believe e* has not implemented this in their 921 PVR or STB 811.

In conclusion, next month should be a fun month because my expectations are very high for VOOM. I have read threads in other forums that have doomed VOOM and expect VOOM to fall. I am very optimistic that VOOM will continue to provide excellent programming but again management at VOOM will have to make changes. No company is perfect and one learns from their mistakes. Hopefully VOOM has learned from some of the bad experiences that some of us had with the installation and continue to drive forward the HD torch.
 
W

Wally

SatelliteGuys Family
Sep 8, 2003
97
0
First impressions - system was installed today.

HD looks good. There is some pixelization in high motion frames, but no more than Adelphia has on digital HD cable now (for comparison).

Cinema 10 does need somewhat snazzier fare. But do keep in some of the old classics a la TCM.

MOOV works for about 2 minutes. They really ought to mix in some basic "beautiful" scenery shots with "softer" less techno music.

SD is really a mixture in PQ: still frames are crisper, better looking than Dish, but when there is motion - ouch! Pixelation city.

Install went basically okay, except the getting the authorization ping resent, well, it takes so long for the installers to get to right person on 800-GETVOOM. No real receiver hassles ... yet!

I have to say, If they get the critical SD additions (USA, CNN, FOXnews, etc.) and the new HD (HBO, Cinemax - expected Jan. 1!!!) the only deal breaker for me is that I cannot get HD OTA, period (mountains!). That mean I have to have Adelphia "locals" package for NBC,ABC,CBS,PBS HDs and that is getting to be an expensive overall expense situation. For those who can get HD locals OTA I think VOOM could work.

For those who cannot get HD locals OTA, then, well, like me, when cable gets at least three movie services HD (probably all I'd get on VOOM anyway), that with ESPN-HD and Disc.HD will be enough to make me hang with cable.

However, if VOOM spoils me enough with easts and wests of soooo many HD movie channels, plus BravoHD, HallmarkHD, etc. ahead of the other services, then I may just stick with them.

Time will tell...
 
S

Sean Mota

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
19,039
1,738
New York City
HD looks good. There is some pixelization in high motion frames, but no more than Adelphia has on digital HD cable now (for comparison).

Wally,

Welcome to the VOOM boat! It's getting to be a fun crowd here. Anyway, you mention pixelation in high motion frames. Which channels where you watching? How big is your display?
 
D

Dan Berndt

SatelliteGuys Pro
Dec 2, 2003
156
0
I've had VOOM for a couple of weeks now and it's growing on me. Even
though I took a week off at Christmas I still have not gotten brunt
out on the cinema 10 movies. I watch Rush, Rave, and Ultra sometimes
and there are now a few shows on Animania that I like now.

The only show I can remember watching this last week that was not in
HD was Civil War Combat on the History Channel (I wish that had been
in HD). I already have more premium HD channels than I ever had with
cable or DirecTV. I dropped Showtime and HBO when I was with DirecTV
because I felt I was paying over $10/month for each HD channel but
with all the VOOM HD premium stuff I figure I will be paying about $3 for each
premium HD channel with the total package.

I even like the digital only OTA reception. My wife use to always
pick the lousy analog signal on the OTA channel with my DirecTV
receiver. With the elimination of the analog reception on the VOOM
receiver I feel like I'm in the 21st Century of television.

I got two VOOM receivers and one of them was freezing really bad. I
got that one replaced (still had to do the factory reboot again) so
hopefully that problem is behind me. I still find the PG cumbersome
and the channel changing is not very stable.

It's getting harder for me to consider leaving VOOM. If VOOM can
improve the programming software and get the channels they are
promising I don't see myself leaving when the deadline comes.
 
D

ds5178

Active SatelliteGuys Member
Oct 24, 2003
20
0
My evaluation

I have been with E* for the last 4 years. I grew impatient with their lack of HD programming, so this month I ordered both Voom and Comcast Digital cable to evaluate.

Voom
I have only watched one movie on movie channels 1-10. "The Usual Suspects" had excellent quality and sound. I haven't seen any other movies here primarily because they haven't interested me. I like HD programming, but I'm not going to watch it if the show isn't on my "watch" list.

I do like the monster channel. My wife and I were watching War of the Worlds a few nights ago. I explained to her that the movie was old, but that Voom would provide the best picture quality to watch the movie with. I believe it came froma 35mm master. I've sampled a few other movies there like Godzilla vs. Mothra. Good channel.

I like the pretty girls on the runway shows on the "model" channel. (the name escapes me.) Great quality!

I love watching NFL game of the week on the NFL channel. Awesome!

There are still more channels of evaluation to complete before making a decision.

I've watched a few movies on Showtime HD which I enjoy. TMC HD comes in 4x3 shape. I'm not sure why. I have to work on this one. However, Starz HD won't come in on my receiver at all for some reason. I have called customer service several times and they are going to try a new receiver. Channel 261 plays Cinema 1 channel, so I kept getting Rocky V the other night. Channel 262 won't come in at all. It says I have to call Voom to upgrade. I call to explain that I get all channels until 2/29/04, hence the new box. I wonder if that will get me Starz HD? Anyone else had this problem?

I get good OTA channels here in Seattle. I watched CSI Miami last night and really enjoyed the picture quality. I am looking forward to the NFL playoffs coming and of course the Superbowl. (Comcast cable doesn't carry the local Seattle CBS affiliate yet because it is owned by their competitor, Cox. On another Seattle Comcast forum I belong to, everyone is bemoaning this fact in regards to the Superbowl.) Thanks to Voom, I'll see it in HD! One problem is that when I tune to local channel 5, it sometimes puts me on local channel 4. Then I have to use the channel up button.

This isn't the place for a Comcast review vs. Voom, but I will say that they have a lot going for them as well as some shortcomings. I won't make a decision until late February. Hopefully by then the 921 will be out, and I can then decide if I will stay with E* HD. I don't really see myself going with two services, probably only one due to cost. Choices, choices...

David Sweeney
 
S

Sean Mota

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
19,039
1,738
New York City
Re: My evaluation

ds5178 said:
I've watched a few movies on Showtime HD which I enjoy. TMC HD comes in 4x3 shape. I'm not sure why. I have to work on this one. However, Starz HD won't come in on my receiver at all for some reason. I have called customer service several times and they are going to try a new receiver. Channel 261 plays Cinema 1 channel, so I kept getting Rocky V the other night. Channel 262 won't come in at all. It says I have to call Voom to upgrade. I call to explain that I get all channels until 2/29/04, hence the new box. I wonder if that will get me Starz HD? Anyone else had this problem? David Sweeney

It looks like you a faulty receiver. I have not seen this behavior on my two receivers. TMC-HD does not show HD 16x9 movies all the time. Usually, the VOOM PG indicates "HD" on the program that are designated HD. Good review. Let us know when your receiver gets swapped and everything is working again.
 
D

ds5178

Active SatelliteGuys Member
Oct 24, 2003
20
0
Acerone said:
Return that receiver for a new one.

Definitely! I called my installer after calling Voom. They are waiting for another receiver and will bring it out when it arrives. 8)
 
D

Digital Pioneer

Member
Dec 27, 2003
8
0
The Jury is still out on VOOM…….

and I imagine will be until late March or until I get my first bill. It has, to say the least, been a rocky start and continues to be incredibly frustrating

The HD pictures are GREAT….when I have them…………..

Cliff notes on my install horror story are: took four trys to get it right, two no shows-no calls from installer, 6 hours over two different days arranged off of work to meet him (all unnecessary), and a week down time waiting for a receiver that could push a viable signal as the one he brought was junk. If apologies were cash I would have made back all that I lost missing work and more.

VOOM & Installs Inc. MUST stay on top of these contractors better than they have been. I have still had no confirm that the new receiver has been sent of service calls scheduled.

Now I’m waiting for my third (replacement, not additional) STB to arrive as current one (#2) freezes after periods of inactivity. Assured on the day before Christmas that STB was shipped and installer would contact me. One week later, after hearing nothing from anyone, I call VOOM. Not only because I have not heard from installer, but also two evenings in a row I have had NO SATILITE SIGNAL. The first VOOM rep tells me my installer has the new STB and will contact me, but suggests I call the local installer. My call to installer yields claim of absolutely NO idea what I am talking about. No STB was shipped, that there was a work order or that I was awaiting a call.

Second VOOM rep. hopefully has sorted this out. STB was indeed never shipped last week despite assurances that it would be. The most recent claim is that 3RD replacement will be shipped. I will either need to take MORE time off work or wait until they can make it on the weekend (thus wasting my weekend time off). Good thing I still have option to get my $749 back and that VOOM programming is presently free or I would have dropped like a hot coal before it was ever installed.

Last two nights signal lost for entire evening. I’m trying to hang in there with this, but it is becoming increasingly difficult. When I do have signal channel changes are horribly slow. Local channels are coming through and erratically at best, one great, when it is coming through, the second blinks on and off, terribly pixilated and no sound. There has got to be a fix to all this. What may I expect other than free on again off again programming for my inconveniences?

Will comment more on programming once I have had a chance to consistently view for even a brief period.

Greg
 
S

Sean Mota

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
19,039
1,738
New York City
Greg,

Welcome to the forum and thanks for posting. Wow! what a nightmare! I hope you have sent this to Wilt to escalate this to higher authority. VOOM needs to get their act together or they will be losing customers from the get go.

What would happen if they did not have somebody like Wilt who had to intercede with so many problems raging from no-show/no-call, no equipment shipped, stb problems, etc... You would think that by now csr would know how to handle these types of problems. I wonder why they did not ship the receiver to you directly and had to send it to the local installer. I would assume that you and technical support (from VOOM) would be able to authorize and download the software of the receiver. This is normal with E* & D* customers. I do not know why V* needs to have a third party for this unless has to do with more serious problems.

Greg, I hope you have contacted Wilt and let us know what happens with all of this.

Thanks.
 
D

Digital Pioneer

Member
Dec 27, 2003
8
0
Holding on

Hi Sean,

Thanks for the reply. Despite V troubles I have very much enjoyed the forum and no longer feeling so alone with this. I appreciate all the info you and others have placed out here. I realize some problems are to be expected, but how much?

I have seen Wilt's posts on this and Yahoo forum. So emailing him direct is OK?

Greg
 
S

Sean Mota

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
19,039
1,738
New York City
Yes, he will assign someone to you to work out the problem. So send him an e-mail he will take care of you.

wilth@optonline.net with the following information: your name, address, with zipcode, and phone number and your story of problems.
 
Acerone

Acerone

SatelliteGuys Pro
Nov 29, 2003
496
0
Long Island
One month today and so far I'm happy with Voom, of course it could be better with MORE HD channels like HBO etc.

The first week after installation I got really excited when they added Starz HD and the second week TMC :) Then two more weeks and only one channels I could care less about "fuel" a SD channel not going to do much for me unless it's TechTV, HGTV "I miss designers challenge" BBC America and some others.

30 days later I give Voom a C+ for HD content and a A+ for OTA. This is the first time I have ever had OTA so it's really nice to see all the networks channels in HD.
 
T

Trindle

SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 3, 2003
39
0
HGTV is THE ONLY THING KEEPING ME FROM SIGNING ON !
 
S

strpyw

Member
Apr 7, 2004
5
0
I also love Gallery and Epic channels, wish for CC

I have Voom for a month now.
Just Gallery and Epic Channels are already worth the price.
I especially appreciate the replay on Palace Museum show.
Too bad there is no closed captions and the information provided has no episode information, no for multiple episodes program like Palace Museum, viewers are lost. How can we get specific information?
 
DarrellP

DarrellP

I Think, therefore, I am.
Supporting Founder
Nov 6, 2003
4,298
0
Salem, OR
Trindle said:
HGTV is THE ONLY THING KEEPING ME FROM SIGNING ON !
That's a sorry excuse for staying away from Voom. :D

Seriously, I've been Vooming for 3 1/2 weeks now and couldn't be happier.

Improvments I'd like to see:

Better PQ for SD channels.

A new user interface for the Guide, it is the worst excuse for a guide I have ever seen; it's cumbersome to operate & is anything but intuitive.

Add the ability to scan for OTA.

Make the Favorites list start at the tuned channel.

When selecting a Theme, keep the highlighted channel at the same place as you scroll to the next time block.

Make the Surf Bar stay on the same hour as you scroll to another channel.

Add additional Favorites so you can save more than 1 list.

Have the ability to jump ahead X number of hours in the guide.

Put in a Cancel to get rid of the Surf Bar instead of a 5 second timeout.

Put in Stretch modes for HD.

Change the Surf Bar so that after selecting Info on a channel you can tune it in. As it is, hitting Enter does nothing, I have to tune up/down to reactivate it.

As far as programming goes, after they get ESPN, I could care less about any new SD channels until they improve the PQ. SciFi is the only other channel I would like to get.
 
P

pdqbobe

SatelliteGuys Family
Feb 20, 2004
102
0
I have had Voom since 2/28/04 and I have to say it is worth every penny ...I like some of these Old movies that I havn't seen in awhile like Guilda , Fresbie and Bean, the Skin Game just to name a few..I like the world sports with soccur and Japan World Series baseball....I'm waiting for more add ons like Espn, Scif, Hgtv,and Wgn if possible but I'm impressed with how quick the upgraded software came to us Voomers and the help of this forum, and Wilts concern to make this box more stable and user friendly. There is more to see in HD than every before.....My only request is that they can merge someway with Tivo but if not I hope the new DVR w/V* comes out soon.
HD=Voom
 

Similar threads

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Total: 0, Members: 0, Guests: 0)

Top