"Unit keeps going dead and terrible cusomer service."0.5 starson by RogersReviews
Pros: When it works, it records two digital shows at a time and you can watch a prior recording at the same time. It's easy to pause or rewind live TV.
Cons: Dish's customer service is extremely terrible. Machine is defective, maybe they all are. The 7 day guide is only filled in for 6-12 hours. It's not a satallite reciever, but has a satallite card which they used to deactive my unit & kept my money
Summary: Echostar/Dish DTVPal DVR compared with Philips DVDR3576Hcnet doesn't allow enough characters to complete my review. Send me an e-mail and I will send the full review: firstname.lastname@example.org
I would giv it 3 out of five stars if it actually worked.
Let me first say, ?DON?T ORDER THE DTVPal DVR until they fix the problems?. I got a defective machine and after seven hours of phone calls and letter writing, they haven?t replaced it. I am now working with VISA and hope they will refund my money. Even though this machine was paid in full and was working over 90% of the time, DISH deactivated it over-the-air and it no longer works at all. I wonder is Dish is not replacing my unit because they know they will be replacing it with another defective unit because that?s all they have. They won?t refund my money either.
Dishes site compares their DVR to the VIP 622 and VIP 722 satellite receivers. If those are race horses, the DTVPal DVR is a pony at best.
I will use words Dish and Philips for the Dish DTVPal DVR and Philips DVDR3576H.
Both receive and record HD and standard digital broadcasts. Only the Philips receives and records analog.
The Dish has a slightly larger hard drive but you cannot change the recording qualities. My Dish DVR only records about 110 hours of standard TV even though it says 150 hours on the box. You can set the Philips DVDR to record 66 to 198 hours of standard TV depending on the quality you want. I set my Philips to 99 hours and it seems to have the same quality picture as the Dish unit.
The Dish DVR records two channels at a time, but it is tricky?you have to set the longer show before you set the shorter shows or it won?t record two at a time. The Philips will only record one show at a time. Both units will play back an existing recording while you are making a recording. Both will also play back a current recording while you are recording it. For example, you can start recording a three hour football game and start watching it an hour later and skip the commercials, time-outs etc. I usually start about two hours into a game and finish at the same time. I can even watch every play in less than 30 minutes with either machine.
The Philips let you watch DVD?s or record to writeable DVD?s as well as the hard drive. I connected my VCR to my Philips DVDR and I copy my tapes to the hard drive. Because the Philips machine has an editing feature, I then edit out items I don?t want and record it to a DVD. You can record one to six hours depending on the quality setting. The DVD?s menu then shows each recording, but it always shows one extra menu choice which is empty. It only records standard definition to a DVD disc. The Dish DVR will not record to DVD?s.
You can pause live TV on either machine, but the Philips does a poor job of this. It?s easier to just hit the hit the record button on the Philips machine. Just hit the pause or rewind or skip back buttons on the Dish DVR. It starts recording any show you watch and keeps an hour in memory if you don?t change channels. If you change channels, it starts over. This feature doesn?t work if you are recording two shows.
The Philips unit looks good, about an 8 or 9 out of 10. The Dish unit looks terrible, probably a 0 or 1 out of ten. It even has the DTVPal TV emblem painted permanently all over the top of the unit. The Dish unit even has a satellite card sticking out the front of it. They didn?t even put a door over it like on their satellite units. They evidently use this to disable your machine if they want to?they disabled mine. The Dish unit has no buttons on it, not even a power button. It is controlled entirely by the remote control. The Philips unit has a power, play, stop and eject button on it. (I don?t know why they need a card. Cards are used to control your particular unit, either to limit service or bill you.)
The Dish DVR lets you edit out channels you don?t want including sub channels like 8.4. The Philips DVDR is all or nothing. You either keep all of channel 8 and its sub channels or you delete them all.
The Philips has a very low quality remote. I hope it lasts a year. I bought another. The quality of the Dish remote is much better, but it?s not excellent.
I have one of the older Mitsubishi rear projection TV?s and it only has one 1080i component input. It also has 480 component input. Although the standard TV images are similar for both units, I have only used the Dish on 1080i input. It has a very good image, but not excellent. My seven year old Direct TV HD receiver (use only for over-the-air TV) has a better image.
I will continue this review if they let me.
Updated on Jan 12, 2009
Although I'd advise against it, if everything was working, the Dish DVR would be better for everyday watching because it has two receivers, a better program menu or guide and better pause and rewind control. It also has a zoom feature the Philips doesn?t have. This will prevent burn-in on plasma and older TV?s.
The Philips is better if you want to record and edit your old VHS family movies or recordings or save current shows to disk.
I recieved a defective unit that works part of the time.
I tried many times (over seven hours of phone time) to resolve this problem.
Dish Network deactivated my product so it doesn?t work at all.
Dish won?t reactivate my product.
Dish won?t give me a return authorization.
Dish won?t pay return shipping for a defective product or even tell me where to send it.
Dish won?t return phone calls.