What price - Entertainment? (1 Viewer)

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Proc

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 14, 2005
469
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Motown
As I was paying my D* bill online the other day, it got me to thinking. Should I compare the local cable companies prices and see if I am getting the most for my money? Should I look for a deal?

It seems everyone is always after a deal. We want the best service at the best price, right?

It always intrigues me when someone says, "X cable company has a great deal!", Is there really such a thing as a "deal" in this business? Sure, you can negotiate a rate with cable or whoever, but in the long run, the price seems to catch up in the end.

I am not a D* cheerleader, and despite some bumps in the road, I have for the most part, been satisfied with the service and programming and program credits here and there help out.

I remember paying under $25 for basic cable. I am now in the $85 a month region, bill-wise, and wonder how much of more of my monthly income will be spend on TV in the next 5 years?

DVR's, Sunday Ticket, pay per view...all choices not available years ago, beckon at the wallet now. I was thinking I might be better off just subscribing to the whole $99.99 package and be done with it.

Is there a price point you won't pass to pay for your D* service?
 
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satjay

SatelliteGuys Master
Pub Member / Supporter
Jun 30, 2005
12,653
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Michigan
Good question Proc, it seems more things go up and while I know its a business, it can suck. I have been looking to see what changes, if any I can make to my 92.00 a month bill. every now and then I look to see what cable has. There is always dish by back but that deal does not last forever, and about a year and a half ago when I did have comcast for a while I did not like it so I moved back to DTV after being a long time customer with them.

I know after sopranos is done. HBO gets axed. So that should save me a few bucks. But I also look at DTV as part of my entertainment dollar. the wife and I do not go "out" as much (cant really bar hop with a two year old) so I guess it does ease the pain a bit when I see its part of my entertainment dollar....Just my two cents.

I am not looking foward to leasing in the future, hopfully the "inital price" for equipment will stay down. I know I have made a choice, that with the rumor price being high to purchase/lease I mean. I do not need a HD-DVR at this time or in the future.
 
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scotsmanron

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 23, 2006
542
0
Florida
It's funny, but I find myself watching less TV but being more picky. I'm a news junky, but outside of that I'm VERY selective on what I watch. If I could I would drop a lot of my channels. At some point I may just get fed up and say the heck with it and cut the whole thing off and just use the internet and radio, plus DVDs. I also just thought dropping my service and hooking up my two DVRs at my parents house and swapping them out ever other week to see the few weekly shows that I want to see.

My price point is almost there at $80 a month,
 

rlstjohn

Active SatelliteGuys Member
Mar 20, 2006
22
0
Millersville, Maryland
Funny! I was just looking at my DirecTV bill and was thinking the same thing. I currently get premier package, Center ICE, DVR service, HD servicie and the OnDirect magazine for a total bill of $108 (not including the Center Ice billing).

Besides 6 Feet Under and now Sopranos I cannot even remember the last time I watched something on HBO and who knows about Starz, Cinemax and Showtime. I've rarely even, and some months have never, cracked open that ONDirecTV magazine which appears to be $35/year.

Most of the "sports" channels are blacked out or I don't watch them anyway so I really don't need all those other channels. I think I will be dropping down to Total Choice Plus (and of course will now have to pay the DVR service fee), dump the magazine, and keep HBO until the Sopranos is done. Doing all that will lower my $108 monthly bill down to $78.

FIOS TV is getting real close to coming into my neighborhood (I already have Internet service) so that will cause another re-look of what I am getting for my money and what I need and use. I sometimes get so frustrated with the H10-250 with it's slow responsiveness I just want to toss it out the window.

OK...enough rambling.
 

Proc

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 14, 2005
469
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Motown
Good points...We've got bills around $85 up to $108 so far. That's alot of scratch every month, isn't it?

And I wasn't counting the sports subs I just 'have to have". ;-) like the NFLST, MLBEI and NHL CI.

However, is there a real "deal" to be made or should we all just kick back and realized we are going to pay no matter what service/package/provider we pick? As satjay mentioned, he rolled back to cable for awhile. I was intrigued by the "Ditch the Dish" thing as well. I could've been out the door for $63 a month and would've received more than I get now (included the DVR and HBO/Cinemax). But after 16 months the special would go away and then what? A bill that gets jacked up and having to renogiate again. I just don't think its worth it.

Yep, its definetely entertainment dollars being spent.
 
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satjay

SatelliteGuys Master
Pub Member / Supporter
Jun 30, 2005
12,653
817
Michigan
Maybe its just the computer I am at...I tried to remove sports pack...Our local FSN is enough for me, but I cant. Each time I remove the check it bounces back to the same screen....It does not foward, I guess I will have to call to have it removed.
 

robbiee19

SatelliteGuys Pro
May 2, 2005
172
0
Hilliard, OH
I agree to Proc points. I have the new H20 and Sir-360 for two HD hook-up in the house, plus two more recievers for the kids! Bill comes out to about $75. Thats the Total Choice Plus package. The wife and I don't hardly watch mainstream TV any more so I happy for the service I get from D*, but I look at the cost and just wonder sometimes. I remember a time when cable was just $20 and it seems to me I had better channels and program to watch back then.
 

scotsmanron

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 23, 2006
542
0
Florida
With all of the TV series that are on DVD now, the only thing that you really miss is live events....sports, news, and the like plus if you have to have the newest shows. I'm getting 24 Season One from Netflix right now, and watching two episodes a night. Other than news and two sporting events-Sunday's F-1 race and yesterday's NCAA game, I haven't watched much live TV lately. I've just got to question am I spending my money wisely. I spend a heck of a lot more time in front of a computer!!!!
 

robbiee19

SatelliteGuys Pro
May 2, 2005
172
0
Hilliard, OH
Agreed! I spend more time in front of the computer! Like my favorite show is FireFly (which is no longer on) which I have on DVD. Live TV is Sports & News (local & national) for the wife and me. Friday nights are family night with all the kids and us watching some movie together with popcorn. Also, if we do watch live TV we see what's on the HD channels first then move on to HGTV History channel.
 

dishrich

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 8, 2003
3,290
342
Springfield, IL
Well, after staring out with TCP, I ended up over the past couple years of pruning my service down to TC+, as I just wasn't watching the premiums at all, (don't have time to even watch all the other stuff sitting on my DVR's as is...) not to mention all the recent rate increases from D*. I paid f/lifetime DVR, so I don't have that extra charge to deal with, even with FOUR D-Tivo's, while I can't really complain about what I paid for all my D-Tivo's over the years. (my first two units were only $100 for the BOTH)

Right now, about the only thing that keeps me on D* are those D-Tivo units, particularly with NOT having to pay any DVR fees. If I had to start even trying to duplicate this on cable, I'd be paying a lot more monthly. BUT, when D* finishes phasing out the HD Tivo's & shifts all HD to MPEG4, I will probably be taking another look at our cable's HD DVR, as there is NO way I'm paying D* $500 to LEASE a DVR. :rolleyes: Also, if the day ever comes that my D-Tivo's become doorstops, it's pretty much a given that I'll be disconnecting D* that same day, as I do NOT want their R15. (or whatever other DVR flavor they have come up with at that time - may as well get a cable DVR & get HD with it ;) ) Also, I will NOT commit to ANY provider for TWO years, just for the priviledge of having their service &/or getting upgraded equipment, D* or otherwise!

Actually, the other thing that keeps me on D* are the Chicago locals, as ours just totally SUCK!!! !sadroll
 
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Proc

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 14, 2005
469
0
Motown
I haven't seen the R15 and obviously, not the upcoming MPEG4 DVR, but I am not totally enamored with Tivo. My wife likes it, so that counts in my household. But to be honest, I just want a DVR to record. I don't much care about the interface to get there as long as its fairly intuitive. My wife asked the other day if we could get the HD DVR, this coming from a person who did not want the Tivo receiver when I first got and now loves it. However, I will NOT shell out $500 to lease it. I really expect something to give regarding that price as the rollout of the MPEG4 DVR starts. There is no way D* can compete with cable's $5-10/month DVR fee by expecting the HD crack addicts like us to break out the 500 bones for it. Again, the NFL Sunday Ticket keeps me as "fish on", but we'll see down the line if the lease fees mellow out a bit.
 
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rlstjohn

Active SatelliteGuys Member
Mar 20, 2006
22
0
Millersville, Maryland
A little off topic, but if I were to go ahead and cancel all of the movie channels and still maintain my HD subscription will I still get Showtime and the other HD channels or will I lose Showtime?
 

GeorgeLV

SatelliteGuys Pro
Oct 27, 2005
1,244
0
rlstjohn said:
A little off topic, but if I were to go ahead and cancel all of the movie channels and still maintain my HD subscription will I still get Showtime and the other HD channels or will I lose Showtime?

You have to pay for Showtime to get the HD version.
 

LonghornXP

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
I'm on a special with Comcast for the next 12 months. I'm getting Digital cable with all premium channels with two HD DVR boxes. I also get Comcast internet and Digital phone service as well. With everything I'm paying 195/month plus change with all taxes and fees and it will increase after 12 months at which time I will cancel the phone service and switch to Vonage. For now with the bundle its cheaper to get Comcast phone instead of Vonage. I've learned that I can't pay for service without an HD DVR and I also "will not" pay upfront money nor a very high monthly fee for any companies HD DVR unless its a Tivo HD DVR that uses a cablecard. I consider a high monthly fee to be over 20 bucks a month per box but with Verizon and Comcasting offering it below or around 15 bucks I wouldn't spend much more than 15 per box now just because others can do it cheaper so why should I pay more if I don't have too. So what if I can afford it that doesn't mean I should spend it either. I also get more local and national HD channels with Comcast in Nashua than with Bright House in Tampa. I also get an all digital lineup too plus Starz and Encore On Demand. Also Comcast has tons of Free On Demand movies and I mean tons that aren't on any of the premiums on demand channels nor are they on BHN. I just watched for free The Fifth Element On Demand in HDTV on Comcast and this alone was cool. It was from MoviePass HDTV or something but its free for all digital cable customers with an HD box. They only have a few HD movies that are free.

For me I've looked at my viewing habits and I would consider these three things in order the most important things I must have with a service.

1. Picture quality (the company with the best gets me as a customer and because I don't have access to FIOS TV service yet Comcast is better than what I had with BHN as I now don't have to watch analog channels with my digital box anymore.

2. Everything HD. This means HD picture quality first, HD programming selection and an HD DVR are a very close second in this section.

3. Video On Demand. I love not having to use my DVR to record my favorite shows such as Huff. Most movies I will gladly watch On Demand and I find it hard for me to enjoy TV and movies without On Demand. I only record specific shows from HBO, Starz and such in HDTV if they have a true benefit for HD. A basic comedy or the like for me doesn't need to waste space while a good special effects movie like say Harry Potter, The Fifth Element and the like are worthy of my limited HD recording space. Beyond movies all primetime shows from the networks are HD no matter what.

For the most part I'm glad I'm out of Florida because being in the state of New Hampshire you start to realize how much bull crap is in Florida. I just hate that state more now because they have stupid people that run it and they don't give a rats behind about the people. No state is perfect and that includes New Hampshire but their still is a big difference between New Hampshire and Florida to say the least. Enough with my rant and please don't comment on my rant saying I'm wrong if you haven't lived as an adult in the last 10 years in both the states of Florida and New Hampshire.
 

logixrat

SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 2, 2006
35
0
Wow, I guess my needs/desires are simple. I just recently subscribed to DTV and selected the Total Choice package with locals. I have the premiums only because they are free for 3 months, and then afterwards I plan on turning them off.

I would have sprung for the DVR service (rather TIVO or not) but because of the configuration of my house it was impossible to install a 2nd cable in the location I desired.

So I have 2 standard receivers and the lowest programming package and find it very sufficient for me. My normal bill is $50/mo with the extra receiver. With the promotion I signed up during, I get 3 months for $29.99/mo and then 15 months for $40/mo.

With my local cable I was paying almost $70/mo! So I saved a good chunk, plus the PQ is superb in comparison to the analog cable channels (the majority of my viewing) and about the same on the digital cable channels.

I don't have HD, so that isn't an issue for me yet. I suspect all the equipment will come down once we actually get to a "standard" vs. this bastardized system we currently use between SD & HD. When it does become an issue, I will re-evaluate my cable provider (Cox Oklahoma) and what they can offer but for now I plan on enjoying the great PQ and low prices that D* offers me.
 

Proc

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 14, 2005
469
0
Motown
logixrat said:
Wow, I guess my needs/desires are simple. I just recently subscribed to DTV and selected the Total Choice package with locals. I have the premiums only because they are free for 3 months, and then afterwards I plan on turning them off.

I would have sprung for the DVR service (rather TIVO or not) but because of the configuration of my house it was impossible to install a 2nd cable in the location I desired.

So I have 2 standard receivers and the lowest programming package and find it very sufficient for me. My normal bill is $50/mo with the extra receiver. With the promotion I signed up during, I get 3 months for $29.99/mo and then 15 months for $40/mo.

With my local cable I was paying almost $70/mo! So I saved a good chunk, plus the PQ is superb in comparison to the analog cable channels (the majority of my viewing) and about the same on the digital cable channels.

I don't have HD, so that isn't an issue for me yet. I suspect all the equipment will come down once we actually get to a "standard" vs. this bastardized system we currently use between SD & HD. When it does become an issue, I will re-evaluate my cable provider (Cox Oklahoma) and what they can offer but for now I plan on enjoying the great PQ and low prices that D* offers me.

When I first switched from Comcast to D* in 2003, I was in similar situation as you. I couldn't believe how much I saved with D*. I had 2 SD STB's and thought it was the shee-at. But then you start adding on other things like DVR service (Tivo in my case), the HD Package, Protection Plan, etc. and the bill begins to look alike like cable, pricewise.
 

satjay

SatelliteGuys Master
Pub Member / Supporter
Jun 30, 2005
12,653
817
Michigan
So to the folks, who have posted....Have you made to switch to comcast or Dish....or just thinking about it. I have thought about it, but will stay. Though I may have some bridges to cross down the road as I may need to upgrade equipment and get slapped with the "lease" fee.

Though I guess, for now I will stay postitive and when I do need to upgrade down the road will hope they will offer some kind of "special" Even though, it would be hard to leave my beloved Sunday Ticket".....Who knows, in a few years the NFL may branch out to other services.
 

scotsmanron

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 23, 2006
542
0
Florida
LonghornXP said:
I'm on a special with Comcast for the next 12 months. I'm getting Digital cable with all premium channels with two HD DVR boxes. I also get Comcast internet and Digital phone service as well. With everything I'm paying 195/month plus change with all taxes and fees and it will increase after 12 months at which time I will cancel the phone service and switch to Vonage. For now with the bundle its cheaper to get Comcast phone instead of Vonage. I've learned that I can't pay for service without an HD DVR and I also "will not" pay upfront money nor a very high monthly fee for any companies HD DVR unless its a Tivo HD DVR that uses a cablecard. I consider a high monthly fee to be over 20 bucks a month per box but with Verizon and Comcasting offering it below or around 15 bucks I wouldn't spend much more than 15 per box now just because others can do it cheaper so why should I pay more if I don't have too. So what if I can afford it that doesn't mean I should spend it either. I also get more local and national HD channels with Comcast in Nashua than with Bright House in Tampa. I also get an all digital lineup too plus Starz and Encore On Demand. Also Comcast has tons of Free On Demand movies and I mean tons that aren't on any of the premiums on demand channels nor are they on BHN. I just watched for free The Fifth Element On Demand in HDTV on Comcast and this alone was cool. It was from MoviePass HDTV or something but its free for all digital cable customers with an HD box. They only have a few HD movies that are free.

For me I've looked at my viewing habits and I would consider these three things in order the most important things I must have with a service.

1. Picture quality (the company with the best gets me as a customer and because I don't have access to FIOS TV service yet Comcast is better than what I had with BHN as I now don't have to watch analog channels with my digital box anymore.

2. Everything HD. This means HD picture quality first, HD programming selection and an HD DVR are a very close second in this section.

3. Video On Demand. I love not having to use my DVR to record my favorite shows such as Huff. Most movies I will gladly watch On Demand and I find it hard for me to enjoy TV and movies without On Demand. I only record specific shows from HBO, Starz and such in HDTV if they have a true benefit for HD. A basic comedy or the like for me doesn't need to waste space while a good special effects movie like say Harry Potter, The Fifth Element and the like are worthy of my limited HD recording space. Beyond movies all primetime shows from the networks are HD no matter what.

For the most part I'm glad I'm out of Florida because being in the state of New Hampshire you start to realize how much bull crap is in Florida. I just hate that state more now because they have stupid people that run it and they don't give a rats behind about the people. No state is perfect and that includes New Hampshire but their still is a big difference between New Hampshire and Florida to say the least. Enough with my rant and please don't comment on my rant saying I'm wrong if you haven't lived as an adult in the last 10 years in both the states of Florida and New Hampshire.

I have to agree with you about Florida but I would like to know what you are specifically talking about. As an aside there is a bill in the legislature right now to take away cable legislation from the cities and counties and give it to the state. It would open up competition like crazy!!!!
 

LonghornXP

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
scotsmanron said:
I have to agree with you about Florida but I would like to know what you are specifically talking about. As an aside there is a bill in the legislature right now to take away cable legislation from the cities and counties and give it to the state. It would open up competition like crazy!!!!

I'm talking about the way Florida is run. For example the FCAT system which I think is the worst system I've ever seen. Kids aren't learning anymore they are preparing for a test that to me becomes memory driven and not knowledge driven. Its many things like this that bug me like crazy and if you want to know more examples please PM me as this really isn't the thread for this talk. But just know its not one specific thing but many different things.
 
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