May 19, 2004, 1:41 AM
Post #2 of 12
From what I've gathered from the more learned forum members here, DirecTV is muy mal (not good) in Mexico. As I understand it, DirecTV's satellites transmit their signals in specific directions, kind of like a spotlight, rather than omnidirectionally, like a normal lightbulb. That means that only certain areas on the planet are able to receive the signal, and as you might expect, those areas tend to focus on the contiguous 48 states. Apparently some people are able to accommodate this "feature" by buying bigger dishes, which allows them to make do with a weaker signal, but the consensus seems to be that Dish Network is the better choice. I'm guessing their "spotlights" aren't as narrowly focused, ergo reception in Mexico is so much better.
Re: [talosian] I went to eBay and found
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So, the dishes you see advertised in the U.S. probably won't work well in Mexico. I've heard comments to the effect that you might get some channels, but not all, and it may be that those channels you do get will be subject to a higher-than-normal incidence of artifacting owing to the MPEG decoding having to reset itself after experiencing loss of signal.
My recommendation would be to wait. Both DirecTV and Dish have just come out with their HD PVR's. This is like TiVO for High Definition. DirecTV's actually *is* TiVO, and as I understand it it is an excellent unit. The model from DISH sadly is said to leave a lot to be desired (but these problems may be addressed by software updates.) Both are approximately $1K US.
In other words, the market is in flux right now. Low-end units are being bumped down in price, which is probably what you're seeing on eBay.
There are also the legal questions. I don't think you can get DirecTV legally in Mexico. Of course, you can get one of those smart cards that lets you pirate the signal, but who knows what the consequences of that would be. The choice appears to be one of no programming, vs. unlimited programming for free. I wish the people who make these decisions (like forbidding DirecTV outside of the U.S.) would think more before acting.
Personally, I have always done without satellite TV. I'm not into sports, and I get all my movies and TV shows through NetFlix, alas, that will be another adjustment since NetFlix isn't available in Mexico. I understand you can download much of this from the net these days however, using a peer-to-peer solution like BitTorrent and a website like suprnova.com, but again we're getting into some dubious conduct.
It's a tough call. It's one thing to steal when the wares are available by paying. But when you're not even given the choice of paying? Interesting.
(FWIW, I plan on watching sunsets in Mazatlan instead of crappy TV sitcoms. I'm thinking it will make me a happier person. And I hear the reruns are always fabulous too!)
To boldly go where no wig has gone before.