I stopped off in one of the Walmarts here in Cola. S.C. checking to see if the prices have dropped off on the Dish 301's. They haven't, but the sales lady tried to sell me a Direct system for 15 bucks.
The 301 is a nice unit but I am finding out that it is not perfect. I have already had to reset one of my two new ones twice in the two weeks since I got them. The IR blaster for VCR recording is a nice feature but useless unless the box and VCR can see each other. My wife is getting ready to pull the plug on it and make me put the 3800 back in service. I got the 3800 free about 4 years ago and paid $50.00 for the two 301s at the WalMart closeout a couple of weeks ago. You don't always get what you pay for.
Still you got a good deal on the 301's I want them for backups. My original 301's have worked great now for almost a year. A burp with them every now and then isn't to bad. Look at the trouble folks are having with those recorders. ouch!
Compare it to my 522, I had to power button reset it yesterday it lost most of my subscription channels. This morning I had to reset it again it was showing a black screen only. None of the DISH products are problem free but the 301 is one of the better products.
Maybe I got a bad one. Of the two one seems to be working perfectly and the other is having problems. It does seem to work OK if you turn it off at night. Is there a way to set the time when it is supposed to download the program guide? My wife tells me it tries to do it during the day when it is in use.
You could go into the menu guide where it states updates with or without permission and change that. Maybe that will help. I turn my sat. receivers off late at nite and always receive the updates before I get up in the morning.