Motorola Comcast Cable Boxes vs. DISH Network Receivers
In their battle over subscribers many TV service providers have taken to touting their DVR/receivers’ strength. One such provider, Comcast®, has often enough claimed that Motorola Comcast cable boxes give it an industry edge. And, sure enough, Motorola DVR cable boxes, or “Motorola DVR tuners,” do offer some features not found on other companies’ devices. But there are also several Motorola DVR problems that far outweigh the benefits Comcast subscribers enjoy from these extra features.
To explain some of these Motorola DVR problems, then, we here at InternetLion.com have put together the following article. In it we describe how, we feel, the Motorola DVR cable box division far outreached what is possible using current technologies, as well as how Motorola Comcast cable boxes specifically suffer from malfunctions due to the TV service provider’s tardy—even, sometimes, nonexistent—updating.
What’s more, we’ve also included explanations of how the DVR/receivers that come standard with DISH Network® deals are superior to Motorola Comcast cable boxes; how these EchoStar devices’ top-notch performance records have even earned them awards from major consumer reporting agencies. No doubt, once you’ve had some time to digest the facts, you won’t want anything to do with Motorola DVR tuners. But enough with the preliminaries. Let’s get into the heart of our argument.
Motorola DVR problems
Generally, Comcast cable relies on Motorola DVR cable boxes for most of its HD receiver and DVR/receiver needs. As a result, as a Comcast subscriber you would most likely receive a Motorola Comcast cable box as part of your subscription. These devices promise a great deal in terms of features and usability, and likely, any Comcast sales rep you speak with will be more than happy to list them for you. But probably the greatest strength of Motorola DVR tuners is that some models, like the DCT6412, allow users to watch and record in HD on more than one TV.
At face value this seems to trump the capabilities of premium DISH Network HD DVR/receivers like the DuoDVR ViP 722k. They, after all, can only receive and record in HD on one television set and offer limited SD reception and recording capabilities on a second set. So why, we might wonder, would a respected consumer watchdog like CNET award the 722k its prestigious Editors’ Choice award if its capabilities are more limited than the DCT6412? One likely reason is that the 722k is more reliable. Or, in other words, there are several Motorola DVR problems that outweigh the promise of dual-tuner capabilities in HD.
For the first of these Motorola DVR problems we need look no further than CNET’s own site. CNET regularly publishes user reviews for electronics, and the first thing that appears in a Google search for “Motorola DVR HDMI” is one very negative CNET user review. According to the user review, submitted by Comcast subscriber “Nate1031,” using Motorola DVR HDMI inputs with certain devices can cause a complete loss of receiver capabilities.
Specifically, Nate1031 attempted to connect an Onkyo sound system using his Motorola DVR HDMI inputs as a Comcast technician suggested. However, after doing so, Nate1031 said, he was unable to receive TV signals through his Motorola DVR/receiver after turning off his A/V receiver. Instead, he said, “dvi” would flash on his screen every few seconds.
Nate1031 went on to explain that Comcast did send a technician to his home. But even after the technician replaced Nate1031’s DVR/receiver the problem persisted. And, according to Nate1031, he was still only able to restore signals through his DVR/receiver by leaving his devices on constantly or unplugging his DVR and plugging it back in each time he used it.
One possible reason for this problem, said one respondent to Nate1031’s request for assistance, was that Comcast was not updating its cable boxes to allow for new auxiliary devices. There was therefore no way Nate1031 could fix his Motorola DVR/receiver himself, which was probably frustrating to say the least. Of course, this problem isn’t really Motorola’s fault, but Comcast’s. And yet, the very fact that Comcast is one of the biggest users of Motorola devices does mean that for many this problem with Motorola DVR/receivers can occur.
In the case of other Motorola DVR problems, however, there are cases when malfunctions are the result of mechanical failures. One DCT6412 user, for instance, reported on the Toms Hardware website that he was having problems with his program recordings. When he would play back his recordings, he said, the tone would vanish and the picture would shift every five to ten seconds.
There was no explanation as to what the problem was and when the user had a Comcast technician out to fix it by even exchanging the DVR/receiver, it did not amend the issue. The user reported that the issue indeed persisted with the new Motorola receiver, making its dual HD tuner capability almost moot.
DISH Network DVR/Receivers – The Most Advanced Receivers
In contrast, few DISH Network DVR/receiver users report such problems, and additionally DISH Network receivers are free for new subscribers with 24-Mo Agreement (a $10/mo. service charge does apply). Consider that even with DISH Network’s most basic package, the America’s Top 120 package, new DISH Network subscribers may receive up to 3 HD receivers, or take advantage of the Free HD DVR upgrade ($10/mo service charge applies) for only $29.99/mo with a 24-mo. Agreement. For a faulty Motorola HD DVR Dual receiver, Comcast subscribers can plan on paying $38.85 per month in addition to $29.99 per month in subscription fees.
Furthermore, DISH Network subscribers enjoy features you can’t get with Motorola DVR/receivers. Take, for instance, the SlingLoaded capabilities offered on DISH Network’s ViP922 DVR/receiver. With a ViP922, subscribers can watch HD programming and schedule recordings on their computers and smart phones as well as on their TVs. That’s definitely something you can’t do with a Comcast device.
Click here to learn more about the revolutionary ViP922 Slingloaded DVR and other breakthrough, reliable technology available only from DISH Network. DISH Network DVR Technology, featuring the most advanced receivers in the industry, is just one of the many benefits of switching to DISH Network today.
Disclaimer: Please note that this article was written when the satellite TV provider DISH was branded as DISH Network. As of 2/1/2012 DISH Network has changed their branding name to DISH. Article post date: 01/16/2011.
Disclaimer: Please note that the ViP922 Slingloaded DVR is no longer available from DISH. Please refer to our Equipment section for information about current DVR models from DISH like the award-winning Hopper DVR.