Tech Forum Summary, 5/8/06

Echostar Knowledge Base
The Dish Network User's Resource

Hosts for the May 2006 Tech Forum are Mark Jackson, President of EchoStar Technologies and Dan Minnick, VP of Engineering


1-888-621-2078 or e-mail

Echo X

Launched Feb 15, currently in orbit. They have almost completed moving channels to the new satellite. The segment opens with video of the launch followed by a slide show of the assembly, transport and launch that was actually narrated by the VP of Space Programs Rohan Zaveri. It was tested at 138° before being moved to 110°.

Uses uplinks centers in Cheyenne WY, Gilbert AZ, Spokane WA, Chicago IL, Mt Jackson VA, and New Braunfels TX. Chief benefits of Echo X are the frequency re-use and auto-tracking that will keep the downlink aimed within .05°.

Record 2 Shows While Watching a 3rd

Video shows how to do this on a 622 in Single or Dual mode. After the video, Dan explains that the HD DVR boxes 921, 942 and 622 record 3 shows at the same time (2 from satellite, 1 from off-air digital, all 3 can be HD) while TV1 and TV2 are viewing different previously recorded shows. (The 921 can only record 2 at once, sat and/or OTA, and does not have an independent TV2 output. Ed.)

HD Local Update

Locals are optional for $5/month. There are 13 HD markets available today, with 11 more to be added in mid-May. In addition to the 11 HD Locals uplinked on May 4, the slate shows Detroit, Indianapolis, Raleigh and St Louis. There is no date on the slate, but the voice-over says mid-May. Also, the map of “launched” markets shows these 4 for a total of 28 rather than 24.

Requires an MPEG-4 receiver. They started using MPEG-4 because of the extra bandwidth required for HDTV. Upgrade offers are explained by Kevin Covell, Director of Marketing.

$200 HD DVR Credit: Leased ViP622

If you have an 811 or 6000, return it for a ViP211 with an upgrade fee of $49.

All the prices include the receiver, installation, and dish upgrade if needed. Customers with multiple HD receivers can do “like for like” upgrades for $49 for each 211 and $99.99 net for each 622. Upgrading from a single-tuner HD receiver to a 622 is $299.99, no return credit offered.

With HDTV combined with DVR you will be living high on the hog, but having an HD set doesn't necessarily mean you are watching HD. You need an HD receiver (6000, 811, 921, 942, 622, 211, 411); an HD television connected via component/YPbPr, DVI or HDMI (S-video, composite and plain coax do not deliver HD); and the receiver should be set to match the highest resolution (1080i or 720p) your TV can accept. The default for HD receivers is 480p and will need to be changed to match your TV.

For TVs that can't accept all resolutions (no video after you change the setting), a recent software upgrade will cause the receiver to revert to the previous setting unless you confirm the change.


Prize: PocketDISH AV700E
Who invented wobulation, and what company is using it in TV sets?

Q & A

Martin: Why is the guide of my 622 showing only HD and OTA channels?
Dan: That's a new feature, the “All HD” favorites list. Keep hitting the Guide button to cycle through the lists.

Kelly: Does Dish support using a VoIP phone connection?
Dan: Yes we do. In the phone setup under installation, put in a “*99” prefix.

Christopher: Status of external hard drives for HD DVRs?
Dan: The engineers have it in beta, the business folks should have a decision on it in the next few months. Probably for the 622 and 942 first.

TJ Simmons: When will you provide a way to transfer file between multiple Dish receivers?
Dan: Out of our control, the content providers won't let us.

Dave: Wants to connect a 625 to 2 TVs. How far apart can the TVs be, what is the range of the remote?
Unobstructed range of the remote is 200'. Video output is high-powered, in most cases can reach virtually any TV in the house with good quality.

Margaret: Someone else is changing my channels, how can I stop this?
Leslie Harper, Product Communications Mgr: Your neighbor has the same remote address as you. Press Sys Info on the front panel, with the UHF remote press and hold the Sat button on top until it blinks, enter a number different than the remote address on the Sys Info screen, press # then press Record. You will see the new address on the screen.

Rodney: Native resolution pass-through on the HD receivers - why have you not implemented this?
Dan: Look for it in the near future, maybe this summer. It was overlooked, not aware of at least his level. “I'll get that done.”

Don: Has a Dish500 with SW21 switch, can I use it for 1 receiver?
Jan Johnson, Gen Mgr, Product Communications: Most likely yes, as long as the LNBFs aren't DishPro. If it's a dual-tuner receiver both tuners must be connected and it's a simple upgrade.


Winner: Gary (actually Jerry aka Pepper) from AL. Wobulation was developed by Hewlett-Packard and is currently used by Samsung in their DLP televisions. The DLP mirror is wobbled faster than the eye can track, in effect doubling the resolution.

Q & A

Sam: Has HBO/Cinemax. When will Cinemax get Dolby Digital?
Bill Moran, VP Dish Network Engineering: No technical reason why not. The current agreement provides for passing DD on just the main HBO channel. Request will be passed along.

Chris: Replaced 811 with 622. What happened to detailed local guide info?
Dan: Local package subscription is required.

Dave: Can I upload photos and music to my DVR?
Mark suggests the XDS feature may be the answer but Dan explains that is a way for a non-DVR to record to the PocketDISH.
Jan: the 942 and 622 allow you to load photos from a mass storage device and some cameras to the DVR. Dan adds that at an unknown time in the future the 622 will be able to play MP3s.

Date for VOD on 508/510, also NBR?
Dan: Acknowledges he said NBR would be out in the spring. They had to decide what to do to avoid putting too many features in one release and they wanted to get VOD out first. VOD will be released in a couple weeks on the 508/510. That pushed NBR back; it is in beta and scheduled for release sometime in July on the 50x series. Video clip showing Dish on Demand. Press DVR twice to get to your recordings. Turn off the receiver when not in use, your programs and timers will not be affected. All 508/510 should have it by early June. The 625 and 622 already have it.

PocketDISH Updates

Record or download your favorite programs to be watched anywhere. Send an hour of recorded content in about 5 minutes from the 622 or 942 via USB 2.0 or in about 40 minutes from a 522 or 625 via USB 1.1.

ModelSreenHard driveGamesDownload sourcePrice

Visit or call 1-888-265-6895.

ITV Interactive Television

Scott Higgins, Director of Sales, Interactive TV

Indy 500 Showcase 6-channel mosaic on DishHome. Schedules, driver bios, stats.

The show ran a bit long, this will be updated when I can catch a replay.

This summary from different authors

The show will be rebroadcast throughout May.

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