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Old 08-06-08, 06:33 AM   #1
DallasSoxFan
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Why would you want cable or sat?

I just moved in to my new (to me) house about 2 months ago.My wife and I decided that we would see if we could attempt to go without sat or cable to save a few bucks a month (about $60). We did get the necessary cable modem line (7 MBps).

I am amazed at how things have changed in the past 5 years. There really is no need for cable or sat anymore. Here's what I've observed:

1. With a decent antenna (mine was already on the house) I get crystal clear HDTV ATSC signals meaning my picture quality is equal, if not better (uncompressed) than over the paid lines. The days of snow and ghosts are over.

2. The standalone TiVo HD I got keeps my DVR experience in tact.

3. 90% of what I watched was on network or syndicated TV and available free. The rest was HGTV, Comedy Central, or other filler which I haven't felt any loss for.

4. I thought I would miss MLB Extra Innings. While MLB.TV isn't quite as good because it bypasses the Tivo, it has done the job fine and looks great hooked up to my TV in full screen mode. DirecTV really lost out on this one. i wanted to keep the dish, getting just this package. They wouldn't do it unless I kept a base package - now I feel no need to ever call them back.

5. Where has hulu.com and tv.msn.com been all my life? Hulu is better because silverlight sucks.

6. Amazon UnBox on the Tivo is great in a pinch, but will be likely replaced by a Roku box and a netflix account soon.

7. The money I'm saving is partly going back into kids DVDs for the play room.
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Old 08-06-08, 06:38 AM   #2
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I would be very unhappy without the Discovery networks, including the DTV offerings. There is still good information on there, but they are turning more into crap shows and I am watching TV less and less.
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Old 08-06-08, 06:46 AM   #3
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Gave up on cable years ago, when it became apparent that it was a junkyard for reruns. Even premiums, like HBO, runs the same movie over, and over, and over again. USA was even running the same show 2-3 times in the same 24-hour period. Now I realize that this might have been for the benefit of those without a VCR or DVR, but really. Every time I stay in a hotel (with the inevitable, standard cable channels) I'm reminded of how much I don't miss cable. There's the Interwebs for catching up on the good stuff anyway.

Haven't gotten a new TV or dig converter box for the old one yet, but I'm looking forward to better reception via digital. I'm with you Dallas- best to save the money.
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Old 08-06-08, 06:50 AM   #4
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WE dont have cable or satellite at our place. Between Netflix and hulu.com, we are covered.
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Old 08-06-08, 06:54 AM   #5
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I get digital cable for Versus so I can watch ~100 hours of Tour de France and all the other races they show.
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Old 08-06-08, 07:01 AM   #6
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Direct TV = History, History International, Discovery, Smithsonian, Nat Geo, Bio, HDTV, TNT (the closer), court TV, to which my wife is addicted, and all the other non-fiction channels, and sports (MMA, boxing, cycling on VS, golf, etc. ) ; HBO (first run 'the wire', sopranos, deadwood, rome, generation kill, etc.). I think it's worth it.
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Old 08-06-08, 07:17 AM   #7
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I do quite well without cable, sat, DSL, or any of that stuff. The only thing I watch on commercial network TV is the news, and that is not a daily event. I watch some shows on PBS. Rabbit ears suffice for that. I use a broadband-speed wireless modem for internet access.

What is MLB? OK, just kidding, I know, but I just don't care.
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Old 08-06-08, 07:24 AM   #8
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It's kind of funny how people make a decision, then feel superior about it. "Why would you want cable or sat?" implies that there is no reason, now that you have foregone the services. I notice the same thing for people who give up meat, smoking, get a new energy efficient device or vehicle or whatever.

Crow about what you do or get... good for you. Most of the rest of us will share your happiness. Leave the judgement or in some cases, holier than thou attitude at home.
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Old 08-06-08, 07:29 AM   #9
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cinemax? (aka skinemax)
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Old 08-06-08, 07:34 AM   #10
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NFL on ESPN.
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Old 08-06-08, 07:37 AM   #11
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I hope my post did not make me seem judgemental or indicate I was thinking myself superior; such was not my intent. With all the money I save on electronic entertainment, I can buy more meat and drive my 4x4 farther.
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Old 08-06-08, 07:50 AM   #12
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I got cable cause its free for me...
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Old 08-06-08, 08:00 AM   #13
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No cable/satellite for me. I usually just end up buying the DVDs i want.
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Old 08-06-08, 08:00 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by skiahh View Post
It's kind of funny how people make a decision, then feel superior about it. "Why would you want cable or sat?" implies that there is no reason, now that you have foregone the services. I notice the same thing for people who give up meat, smoking, get a new energy efficient device or vehicle or whatever.

Crow about what you do or get... good for you. Most of the rest of us will share your happiness. Leave the judgement or in some cases, holier than thou attitude at home.
No judgement whatsoever. Personally, I think I am the freak on this one.

Provocative subject lines are a means to lure the unsuspecting into the world of foo. Bring on the controversy!

I mention my observations because my experience talking with other people is that they have been going along with cable/sat for so long and haven't thought about it that they simply don't realize how much things have changed and that you really don't lose too much.

I honestly believe that if digital TV had been born at the same time as cable, cable never would have survived, or would have evolved on a more a la carte business model.

The Holy Roman Empire was neither holy, nor Roman, nor an empire - discuss.
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Old 08-06-08, 08:01 AM   #15
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cinemax? (aka skinemax)
Are there not more free alternatives on the internet? (ISP costs excepted)
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Old 08-06-08, 08:09 AM   #16
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Are there not more free alternatives on the internet? (ISP costs excepted)
the suggestion was more nostalgic than practical.
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Old 08-06-08, 08:09 AM   #17
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Are there not more free alternatives on the internet? (ISP costs excepted)
There's always you****.com

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Old 08-06-08, 08:57 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skiahh View Post
It's kind of funny how people make a decision, then feel superior about it. "Why would you want cable or sat?" implies that there is no reason, now that you have foregone the services. I notice the same thing for people who give up meat, smoking, get a new energy efficient device or vehicle or whatever.

Crow about what you do or get... good for you. Most of the rest of us will share your happiness. Leave the judgement or in some cases, holier than thou attitude at home.

I don't feel at all superior about our decision to scrap our cable connection long ago. It was a highly personal decision that yes, affected the whole family, but shouldn't (and my goodness, I hope doesn't) affect anyone else, besides Comcast who isn't getting $100/month from us because of our decision- somehow me thinks that they really couldn't care less...

Anyway, mea culpa if I offended anyone with my comments.
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Old 08-06-08, 09:04 AM   #19
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Anyway, mea culpa if I offended anyone with my comments.
Nothing to worry about. Some folks just don't like it when people are happy.

I might consider dumping the dish if:

1. We weren't 90+ miles from closest over-the-air transmitter, plus in the mountains. Local stations don't come in worth a squat here.
2. The 4 and 7 year old would be *devastated* if they missed a new spongebob episode.
3. I'm in the minority, but enjoy HGTV and Food network.
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Old 08-06-08, 09:15 AM   #20
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Help me catch up here. It was my understanding that if I unplug the cable, I get 8,10 & 13, and that's it. What are these over the air HD channels, what equipment is needed, etc? I would love to stop paying so much for tv.
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Old 08-06-08, 09:17 AM   #21
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Nothing to worry about. Some folks just don't like it when people are happy.

I might consider dumping the dish if:

1. We weren't 90+ miles from closest over-the-air transmitter, plus in the mountains. Local stations don't come in worth a squat here.
2. The 4 and 7 year old would be *devastated* if they missed a new spongebob episode.
3. I'm in the minority, but enjoy HGTV and Food network.

All good reasons for keeping the dish, IMO.
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Old 08-06-08, 09:21 AM   #22
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Help me catch up here. It was my understanding that if I unplug the cable, I get 8,10 & 13, and that's it. What are these over the air HD channels, what equipment is needed, etc? I would love to stop paying so much for tv.
I would imagine 8, 10 and 13 will start broadcasting in HD. They will have to.
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Old 08-06-08, 09:30 AM   #23
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Help me catch up here. It was my understanding that if I unplug the cable, I get 8,10 & 13, and that's it. What are these over the air HD channels, what equipment is needed, etc? I would love to stop paying so much for tv.
https://www.dtv2009.gov/

according to antennaweb.org you would also get 31 (fox) and 21 (pbs). Crystal clear, HD uncompressed. Probably with good old fashioned rabbit ears if you are in Rochester. You'll need a digital tuner (see the link above for a $40 coupon that will get you started) and a plain old tv. Digital tuners are available at Walmart for $50 ($10 with the coupon).

The rest of the content can be gotten over the web if you hook your TV up to a computer. This is fairly easily done with a video card that outputs to s-video and an s-video to RCA converter if it is an old TV without s-video.

Anyway, it is worth the $10 just to try. The coupon takes about 6 weeks to come in.
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Old 08-06-08, 09:32 AM   #24
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All good reasons for keeping the dish, IMO.
Agreed. The only exception I would make is the spongebob. If you dropped cable, you would have a great budget for buying DVDs each month. In addition, if you hooked your computer up to your TV, you could view them at:

http://www.nick.com/turbonick/video_list.jhtml
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Old 08-06-08, 11:15 AM   #25
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I would like to dump cable but the family would cry, they would miss their reruns. Cable is way overpriced anymore, I get more and better entertainment using the google in the internets. Alot cheaper.
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