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Anyone received new MPEG-4

mrm64
08-13-2005, 01:42 PM
Has anyone in the 12 major markets received the new MPEG-4 receiver yet? If so, what's the pros and cons we can all look for in the future?

Smthkd
08-13-2005, 06:25 PM
No one has received it yet and wont until Nov!

shellback
08-13-2005, 08:34 PM
Ok, I missed that one. Where did you get "November" date?

Smthkd
08-14-2005, 07:09 AM
Their 2nd Quarter Results Conference that was streamed over the net.

spiderweber
08-18-2005, 09:57 AM
I don't know much about he MPEG4 changeover. I assume the current boxes don't support it but is it just a software change or will the boxes have to be swapped out? Will this be a the expense of D* or us?

Also, does this just affect the HD receivers?

Thanks, sorry for all the questions but I'm kind of new to this.

png12977
08-18-2005, 11:36 AM
I believe it will have no affect SD programming, Mpeg-4 will be used to recieve HD locals, so if you don't have HD or you can get your locals with an antenna, it will have no affect on you for now. I'm not sure if they add new HD content like ESPN2HD, TNT-HD, etc, whether we will need the Mpeg-4 receiver or not.

spiderweber
08-18-2005, 01:09 PM
I just got off the phone with D* HD dept. and they guy hadn't really heard about this MPEG2/4 issue and he put me on hold for a few minutes. He came back and said that he was able to dig up some info and said it was going to be a software upgrade similar to what's been done to other boxes. According to him, our current HD boxes will not become obsolete. Although he did say we would need the new 5 LNB Dish (not sure if that will need a new or larger dish but it will require 2 additional LNBs. Other than that he couldn't give me anymore details because he just didn't have them. He said that they'd send more info about it once it gets closer to the turn on date. I live outside of DC so I'm hoping this is by the end of the year.

That's what I heard but you always seem to get a different answer to the same question everytime you call up and talk to someone new.

jpnuzzo
08-18-2005, 01:09 PM
I believe it will have no affect SD programming, Mpeg-4 will be used to recieve HD locals, so if you don't have HD or you can get your locals with an antenna, it will have no affect on you for now. I'm not sure if they add new HD content like ESPN2HD, TNT-HD, etc, whether we will need the Mpeg-4 receiver or not.

That would not be the best way to manage bandwidth.

D* would regain a ton of bandwidth by delivering all of the (>100) SD channels using mpeg4.

spiderweber
08-18-2005, 01:15 PM
I think that's the goal over the next few years. Roll out the locals with mpeg-4 and at the same time switch over the other 100+ channels as well. But what about people who don't want HD and use a standard box. They're set up to receive mpeg-2 and the boxes might not have been designed back then with this in mind (software upgrade). They'd need new boxes.

mrm64
08-18-2005, 05:47 PM
I received different information than some of you. I was told by Directv that HD customers would receive a new MPEG-4 receiver and it only required a 3 LNB dish. I asked about the old MPEG-2 receiver and Directv said it was mine because they had no use for it. HD customers should receive a communication in the mail outlining the details of the upgrade as they become available. Directv will replace our old receiver with the new MPEG-4 at no cost to us. No information available from this rep about DVR upgrades as the new MPEG-4 compatiable DVR's are not available at this time. Timeline given was the first largest 12 markets should be converted by the end of 2005 and the new DVR's should become available in early 2006.

spiderweber
08-19-2005, 11:58 AM
I've been researching this MPEG-2/4 switchover and what I gather from it is that because the new spaceway sats will spot beam the HD locals (starting with the 12 DMAs published) it will use MPEG-4. The two new birds us Ka band to spot beam versus the broad Ku band that we receive the current SD and some HD ($10.99 package) via MPEG-2. Since the current hardware isn't compatible with MPEG-4, new boxes will have to be swapped (hopefully at D* expense) if one wants to see HD locals over the satellite. However, I believe that while D* is in this transition phase of MPEG-2/4, they will keep NY and LA HD Locals in MPEG-2 (in addition to NY and LA HD locals in MPEG-4). That way, we can still watch the networks in HD until we swap out our HD receivers. This will be good for those of us with HD TIVOs because the new D* HD DVR will not be out until early 2006. We can still see network football and other shows in HD via the coastal MPEG-2 broadcasts. Once all local areas are provided HD locals via the new spaceway satellites in MPEG-4, I would assume that D* would begin to swap out SD receivers as I would think they would then switch all channels to MPEG-4 for better compression and save on bandwidth. This process would take a few years and thereby having the cost of swapping the boxes be reduced as the MPEG-4 boxes would be much cheaper and less of a cost for D* to swap at no cost to the subscriber. Not to mention that this roll out of new boxes over time would prevent a mass exodus of D* subscribers. If we do get the swap out sooner rather than later, the new MPEG-4 boxes will also be MPEG-2 compatible so we're set there.

As far as the new dish goes for the receiving Ka band MPEG-4 signal from the new satellites, it will be a larger dish with 5LNBs. The larger dish will allow for capture of the Ka band signal and 5LNBs will allow it to see all 5 satellites. This will be conducive to D* also pushing its broadband product Spaceway. Since the new Ka band satellites are dual use for HD channels and a broadband HUB, this would be more appealing to customers because they would only need one dish that could handle TV and Internet use.

But I don't think we have to worry that we'll be left to hang if we don't upgrade out boxes to the MPEG-4 compatible boxes, at least not for a few years. And by then we'll want to for convience.

Any thoughts?