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Satellite Receiver, Cable Box and HD DVR Reviews

Every HDTV needs a satellite or cable receiver of some kind. In today's market our satellite and or cable providers tend to include the hardware but where do you go for honest reviews of the latest components? Right here is the answer. Whether you are using Comcast, Time Warner, AT&T, Dish Network, DirecTV or any other national service ' you will find reviews of their HDTV receivers here.

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DirecTV Genie Whole-Home HD DVR Reviewed

DirecTV Genie Whole-Home HD DVR Reviewed

By Jerry Del Colliano

Overall Rating
4.5 Stars
 

The DirecTV Genie HD DVR is a big step forward for the company. Jerry Del Colliano evaluates the Genie to see if there are any stumbles to go with those big steps DirecTV is taking. Read More

 
Dish Network Hopper Reviewed

Dish Network Hopper Reviewed

By Andrew Robinson

Overall Rating
4.5 Stars
 

Dish Network's Hopper has been a much talked about new receiver from the satellite provider. Andrew Robinson investigates all the features of this much touted new product from Dish Network. Read More

 
Terk FDTV2A Indoor HDTV Antenna Reviewed

Terk FDTV2A Indoor HDTV Antenna Reviewed

By Adrienne Maxwell

Overall Rating
4 Stars
 

There have been more HDTV antennas on the market to access HD television channels over the air. Adrienne Maxwell examines the Terk FDTV2A in this review to see how it does as a solution. Read More

 
Home Theater Review's Best of 2012 Awards

Home Theater Review's Best of 2012 Awards

By HomeTheaterReview.com

Overall Rating
5 Stars
 

It's that time of year again. The Home Theater Review staff has looked over all of the year's impressive offerings - of which there were many - and narrowed it down to what they believe to be the best of 2012. Read More

 
Mohu Leaf Ltd. Indoor HDTV Antenna Reviewed

Mohu Leaf Ltd. Indoor HDTV Antenna Reviewed

By Adrienne Maxwell

Overall Rating
4 Stars
 

If you are looking for an easy, reliable over-the-air solution to get high definition channels to your high definition television, then the Mohu Leaf Ltd Indoor HDTV antenna is well worth your consideration. Read More

 
DirecTV HR24 Satellite Receiver and HD DVR Reviewed

DirecTV HR24 Satellite Receiver and HD DVR Reviewed

By Adrienne Maxwell

Overall Rating
4.5 Stars
 

Reviewer Adrienne Maxwell decided to upgrade her system with the DirecTV HR24 Satellite Receiver and HD DVR, and it proved to be quite the upgrade according to her review. Read More

 
AT&T U-verse DVR and Service Reviewed

AT&T U-verse DVR and Service Reviewed

By Andrew Robinson

Overall Rating
1.5 Stars
 

U-verse is a fiber optic based broadband service capable of supplying high speed Internet, phone service and digital TV to residences. Overall reviews of the picture quality, especially in HD, were not very favorable and there was little to separate this product from the competition... Read More

 
TiVo Premiere HD DVR Reviewed

TiVo Premiere HD DVR Reviewed

By Adrienne Maxwell

Overall Rating
3.5 Stars
 

There are two models to consider here: the TiVo Premeire and the TiVo Premeire XL. It features a 320GB hard drive and provides up to 45 hours of HD recording. You can record up to two shows at the same time or watch one show while recording another. There are a ton of Web and networking friendly features... Read More

 
Moxi HD DVR Reviewed

Moxi HD DVR Reviewed

By Adrienne Maxwell

Overall Rating
3 Stars
 

Moxi has been making a name for itself in the DVR industry and we can see why. There are two and three tuner configurations available and this model features a 500GB hard drive with the ability to add more storage. It permits access to Netflix, Rhapsody, Hulu and many more and the service is free once you pay for the box... Read More

 
DirecTV HR23 Satellite Receiver and HD DVR Reviewed

DirecTV HR23 Satellite Receiver and HD DVR Reviewed

By Adrienne Maxwell

Overall Rating
5 Stars
 

This is the next step up from DirecTV's HR21. It has a larger hard drive which allows for about 100 hours of HD recording and 400 hours of SD recording. No BBC box is required to get the full HD lineup. However, even through you pay to "buy" this DVR, DirecTV still owns it and charges monthly equipment fees... Read More

 

Satellite Receiver & HD DVR Reviews Wiki

1.0 Overview
2.0 Satellite Access Cards


1.0 Overview
The satellite receiver is the same basic kind of component as the cable box, but is designed specifically for use with satellite HDTV systems. In the early days of satellite TV, DirecTV had other companies making their hardware. One of these companies was Sony, which used the very popular TiVo operating system for their early, standard-definition sat receivers and recorders. Once News Corp took over DirecTV, they abandoned technical support for TiVo, thus relegating the device to world of aftermarket cable boxes. Some of the early DirecTV HDTV recorders used TiVo, much to the pleasure of the end users. Today, MPG4 compressed satellite receivers (you need MPEG4 to get all of the 100-plus HDTV channels from the satellite providers) come with their own proprietary operating systems. Competing Dish Network DVRs also come with their own operating systems; they never used the TiVo system.

2.0 Satellite Access Cards

Unlike most cable boxes, a satellite receiver comes with a highly sophisticated access card that must be plugged into the front (or back, for older units) of a satellite receiver in order to get a signal. The code from the satellite receiver needs to be given to the satellite provider so that it can track the usage of the system and activate the signal. Years ago, hackers found a way to crack cable cards, allowing those feeling frosty to get any and every channel, movie and sports program. Satellite companies quickly caught up, leaving these users frequently missing all of their channels. Today, most users don't find it's worth playing the cat and mouse game of trying to cheat the satellite company out of some free channels, considering the legal and logistical ramifications.