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limetime2
(@limetime2)
Advanced Member

I don't watch much TV, but there are a few programs I love and want to watch...however... I can't stand to have a black box determine my schedule. Therefore... I love TIVO! It is absolutely the best. I just tell it what shows I always want to see, it finds them, records them, saves them for me to watch at my leisure and I can fast forward through all the commercials and not waste my time. I record about an hour of television a day and I watch TV only one or two evenings a week... in about a third of the time. I see all that I want to see (plus TIVO is smart enough to record things it thinks you might like so sometimes I watch things that it recommends)... but I never have to worry about being home in time for XXXX. LOVE this. I'm assuming other DVR tools are similar to TIVO and I highly recommend them to anyone who wants to be in control of their time and not at the mercy of a TV schedule. I'm assuming these tools are available on both cable and sattelite options.

Cable vs Satellite? I'm a consumer, not a techie. I like to have as many options as possible, with the best reception and best reliability as possible. Just like with any other service, I can be tolerant if nothing else is available or when the price is significant enough to make the decision a financial one. We shop the options... and then take the best service at the best value that meets our needs. For me and mine..., that has been satellite. Lots of channels with educational programs, special interest channels (arts, crafts, community), music channels galore.... sci fi... and more. And, the customer service that we've had to deal with has been far more responsive than what I've come to expect from Innovative.

Innovative, the company, would be a concern and a consideration in my choice. I have had very bad experiences with Innovative in the past with telephone... (weeks and months to respond to a phone outtage)... I can't imagine relying on them for TV. I would worry about what the extra load is going to do to the existing Innovative cable base. Even if it doesn't affect the reception quality/performance... I'm sure that the employee's at Innovative will have a few months of extra stressful workload and installation calls. But, I guess Innovative might be hiring some customer service representatives and tech people. May be time to go apply for a job!

I hope someone else comes in and provides a cable option for the many people that CHOICE is dropping... those of us commenting here online are connected enough to be able to realize they have options...but there are many on this island who don't know they have a choice.. or don't have a choice because of $$, location, property restrictions. I feel bad for them and hope someone else will come give Innovative a run for the money.

Happy choice making to all of you with no CHOICE. (hee hee).

P.S. I highly recommend looking into TIVO like tools! You'll love it!

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Posted : March 24, 2009 6:16 pm
stiphy
(@stiphy)
Trusted Member

Has anyone been able to get Tivo to work with Innovative? I had a Replay TV working with them but it was crazy what I had to go through to make it work, I had to setup software to "screen scrape" MSN's tv listings and "serve" them to my Replay TV. After a few months that stopped working. I also heard that it didn't work with Choice. Like I said, this for me is the largest reason that I went with Satellite.

Sean

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Posted : March 25, 2009 12:31 am
pamela
(@pamela)
Trusted Member

Help please. As interesting as all of this the bottom line is I will lose my choice cable in a month. My husband is housebound and relies on cable tv to keep from going completely nuts while I am away from the house - about 5 - 6 hours a day!

I NEED HELP! Can someone tell me what is the best way to go. I dislike Innovative but will go do that if I MUST. All the techincal talk about Direct and Dish is quite frankly lost on me. *-)

I want a decent quality, large choice of channels including major networks at a reasonable cost. Am I being silly?

I live in the Mandahl area in St. Thomas. I would appreciate it if any of you folks who are getting chastised for advertising your knowledge and expertise here could PM me with a number so I can talk to you about options.

Help an old woman, please?

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Posted : March 25, 2009 1:30 am
rotorhead
(@rotorhead)
Trusted Member

A Tivo Series 2 will work with Innovative. I have helped friends set these up. The Series 3 which uses a CableCARD does not because the Innovative Set Top Boxes are late 80's vintage and predate the CableCARD standard.

None of the Tivo's worked with Choice because their Korean STB was not supported.

John

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Posted : March 25, 2009 1:40 am
Edward
(@Edward)
Trusted Member

Pamela, a suggestion: Contact a professional, like Sloop Jones, and put your situation in his or her hands.

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Posted : March 25, 2009 5:50 am
Betty
(@Betty)
Trusted Member

Pamala,

it will come down to this. Satellite has a large set up cost but generelly a lower monthly cost then innovative (if you want movie channels). With satellite your looking atleast $600 to $800 to get started without abc, cbs, nbc, and fox until you wavier goes through. Then add another $10 to your monthly bill. You will have a large satellite attached to your roof or your yard.

Innovative will cost you about (can't remember deposit....guessing) $100 (no more then that) to get started. For extended basic your looking in the $40 to $50 monthly bill. Add about $10 to your monthly bill if you add hbo, add $10 if you add cinemax, etc.. Innovative connects to your house through cable (telephone pole). With innovative if you have their telephone service and their dsl you get a $30 monthly discount on all their services.

Depends what you need and where you live. If you live in a condo you need to make sure you are allowed to have a dish, ask your manager.

Hope I didnt confuse you more....good luck

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Posted : March 25, 2009 10:25 am
Jim Dandy
(@jim_dandy)
Trusted Member

Your numbers on costs are slightly off:

Deposit $35 for each digital box

Monthly cost including all fees, taxes, box rental etc.

1 Digital box with expanded basic $56

2 Digital boxes with expanded basic $62

Packages are available with 1 - 4 Pay services beyond expanded basic. with 4 pays and 1 digital box approx $85.

there may or may not be an installation charge.

Jim

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Posted : March 25, 2009 10:50 am
Juanita
(@Juanita)
Expert

Pamela,
I so feel your pain! This is all so above my head, I'm lost. I'm thinking the easiest, least expensive, quick and dirty answer for you is just go with Innovative. You get basic (about 20 channels) for under $15 a month or the expanded (65 or so channels) for about $55. All you have to do is go in and sign up. No dishes, special cables, etc., etc. Do you own you place or are you renting. If renting, you probably really don't want to deal with a major installation. Good luck. Give our best to hubby!

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Posted : March 25, 2009 11:31 am
sherri
(@sherri)
Advanced Member

Tho I haven't read this whole thread, we are Dish Network subscribers and highly recommend it!
One thing to think about is: If you have a hurricane, the dish can go right back up and you are back in business! After Hurricane Marilyn, Cable was down for 3 years if I recall right! Just food for thought!
You don't have to know all there is to know about installation, etc., let your provider do that! It isn't all that difficult really!

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Posted : March 26, 2009 11:40 am
stiphy
(@stiphy)
Trusted Member

I apologize if I've confused things at all.

At the end of the day I'd suggest going to Innovative and getting their costs, then talking to your Satellite provider and getting their costs. As for Satellite being too technical, you don't have to know anything about the technical stuff, that is what the Satellite provider will do for you. If you don't care just get the prices and say "hook it up" and it will be as easy as cable.

The one thing to consider is that if something goes wrong (including bad hurricane) you will be dealing with Innovative (we know how that goes) vs your Satellite provider,. In my experience I'd much rather work with my Satellite provider (SkysTheLimit) then Innovative.

Sean

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Posted : March 26, 2009 3:13 pm
Betty
(@Betty)
Trusted Member

Here's the thing about hurricanes, Innovative waits for wapa to get the power on before they go into an area. They do not want to be in wapa way. The longest most people were without power, cable etc was about 6 months after hugo and marliyn. Now some went a little longer some were shorter, it always varies. Heck I know one guy who just finally got his electric hooked up from Omar.

Without electric satellite's not going to do much good. Hooking your tv or computer up to a generators a really bad idea, unless you want to destroy it. I don't care how many surge protectors you have either.

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Posted : March 26, 2009 3:27 pm
SkysTheLimit
(@SkysTheLimit)
Trusted Member

My electronics work great on generator.
Never had a problem.
The key is whole house and quality surge protectors behind each appliance you care about. Not all power strips are surge protectors and not all surge protectors are built the same. PanaMax is a good brand. But that's another thread.
We had TV and internet about 8 the next morning. The option was wait 10 days for WAPA and then my neighbors cable was out for like 3 or 4 weeks. No Thanks!!

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Posted : March 26, 2009 6:00 pm
sloop jones
(@sloop_jones)
Advanced Member

Betty,

I wonder where you got your info about generators TV's and computers?
An appropriately sized generator for your property will provide consistent current for your appliances. The generator needs to be in good running order and have the capacity to run the load you put on it.

I have used one as a backup since Marilyn with no ill effects on any of my electronics.

Sloop Jones

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Posted : March 27, 2009 10:56 am
Jim Dandy
(@jim_dandy)
Trusted Member

You get what you pay for with a generator. Cheap generators are designed to run tools, maybe your refrigerator and a water pump. Cheap generators often don't regulate voltage or frequency very precisely. A surge protector won't correct either of these problems and you can damage electronics.

Better generators use inverter technology and are very precise. In fact if the generator isn't overloaded the quality of the power is much better than what WAPA delivers.

I ran my home for two weeks on a Honda generator and had no problems.

Jim

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Posted : March 27, 2009 12:09 pm
Betty
(@Betty)
Trusted Member

Sloop,
Go talk to the guys at pc paradise. They were overwhelmed with computer repairs from people hooking up computers to generators after Omar. I wouldnt risk it, unless you really feel like you know what you're doing. And lets face it, most don't when it comes to computers. I for one am not going to recommend it.

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Posted : March 27, 2009 12:27 pm
STXResident
(@STXResident)
Advanced Member

We have an Onan generator and have run Satellite TV and computers off it many times with no ill effects.

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Posted : March 27, 2009 2:51 pm
Jim Dandy
(@jim_dandy)
Trusted Member

Betty:

How do you think BroadbandVI, Choice, AT&T, Sprint and even Innovative kept their systems up after Omar? Generators. Again if you buy a quality generator it isn't a problem.

Jim

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Posted : March 27, 2009 4:05 pm
Betty
(@Betty)
Trusted Member

Jim,

Come'on your little engineer heart is just arguing to argue. Do you thing most people have generators like choice, broadband, sprint, etc... No, they do not. Most are usually working off small ones that will power their fridge, a/c and maybe a few other things. I do the books for enough business to know what the big ones cost and what it costs to maintain them. Its ALOT more then most want to invest in. You see the big ones more on the east end with all the vacation rentals but its a small portion of the pop that has the expensive ones. You go ahead and trust your honda, but all generators do is wear out and break down and need constant maintence. Yours may go without problems for more years then most but my computer is worth a hell of alot more then my generators which the govt gives us for free.

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Posted : March 27, 2009 6:28 pm
dougtamjj
(@dougtamjj)
Expert

Well I am sure that my generator is not as big or expensive as Broadband VI or the other big companies but when ever my power is out we run 4 computers 24/7, AC, fridge, TV ect. The only maintenance we have done is change the oil filter cartridge in almost 3 years. The only problem with any appliances came after Omar when WAPA trashed my microwave. No problem at all with computers or anything else.

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Posted : March 27, 2009 7:00 pm
Jim Dandy
(@jim_dandy)
Trusted Member

Betty:

The generators used at tower sites and headends usually are not that large. !2 Kw is plenty and that is the size many people use at home if they have a permanently mounted generator. The cost is about $8K with a water cooled industrial diesel engine. Installation, fuel tank, pouring a pad will run the cost up to about $12 K.

The key when buying a generator is not just to look at the price, but if the power is true sine wave, how tightly the frequency and voltage are regulated. Generators that can keep the fluctuations within +- 1% are readily available. You can purchase a 5Kw portable generator suitable for electronics starting at $1,000. A gasoline generator wont last as long as a more expensive diesel but your electronics will be fine.

I have over three hundred hours on my current generator and haven't had any problems with three computers, stereos, plasma TV, etc.

If only WAPA could do as well regulating their power. Today the highest WAPA voltage I recorded was 123.8 volts and the low was 117.2. I don't log frequency, but my digital clocks have to be reset weekly because apparently WAPA runs slighlty over 60 Hz.

Jim

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Posted : March 27, 2009 7:40 pm
Betty
(@Betty)
Trusted Member

Ahhh I thought you were talking about the generators the business themselves use for their stores (so to speak).

I appreciate the info on generators but its just not worth the risk to me, a few days without cable or computers does not harm. Gets me caught up on my reading. I can always download any shows I really miss. Unfortunately after a big storm there's always alot of clean up to do as well. Not alot of goofing off time.

Seriously about two weeks after Omar I took my computer in because a Windows update had crashed it and they said it would be a week or two because they were so backed up from all the people who hooked up their computers to generators. So there's gotta be more then a few people out there with not so nice generators or its just a risky move.

That will make my husband happy to know about the alarm clocks. Drives him crazy.

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Posted : March 27, 2009 8:45 pm
QueenofdeRock
(@QueenofdeRock)
Advanced Member

Have a 15KW runs entire house never had a problem yet...knock on wood!

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Posted : March 27, 2009 9:46 pm
SkysTheLimit
(@SkysTheLimit)
Trusted Member

Satellite receivers don't seem to be effected by any generator. Have not replaced a single receiver or component due to running on a gen set. Including tiny 2 stroke gens.

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Posted : March 28, 2009 10:57 am
sherri
(@sherri)
Advanced Member

We use Solar to charge up batteries and then use our inverter! As with inverters and generators it is also about not over loading on power! This is KEY! (tu)

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Posted : March 28, 2009 11:43 am
stiphy
(@stiphy)
Trusted Member

I ran my TV and Sat box off my little 2 stroke generator after Omar....I put it through a UPS battery back up though to regulate the voltage and had no problems. Having some TV to watch after a long day of cleaning up after Omar was sooo nice!

It doesn't surprise me though that PC power supplies took hits...most PC's have TERRIBLE power supplies in them. I build my own PCs and by far the most common component I have to replace is my power supply. That's here and in the states on well regulated electricity.

Back on topic, someone should court the gym at Beaston Hill for Dish. They have new flatscreens so could benefit from HD, and just switched from innovative to choice 6 months ago or so, probably for a reason. Actually, I'm surprised Dish national doesn't offer a special promotion right now in the VI considering the opportunity and their recent numbers (they are losing subscribers nationally). They hardly subsidize us at all here, they should at least reimbursed new subscribers for the part of the cost for installation that equals what they pay in the states (where they offer free installation).

Sean

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Posted : March 29, 2009 4:37 am
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