Tech Forum Summary, 8/14/06

Echostar Knowledge Base
The Dish Network User's Resource

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


1-888-621-2078 or e-mail

Software Updates

Coming to the 522/625, 942 and 622: Under DVR>Sort, “DVR Date” will be moved higher in the list, the PIP Swap key will alternate between the last 2 sort methods used.

Coming to the 522/625, 942 (already on the 622:) Adding sub-themes to search. Movies can be narrowed to comedy, thriller, action, etc.

Local Markets


Since the last Tech Forum they have added Corpus Christi TX, Lafaette & Baton Rouge LA. Up to 164 cities covering 96% of the TV households.


This summer added St Louis MO and Detroit MI. Up to 26 cities covering 47% of households.

HD Programming Updates

HD Upgrade Offers

Both new and existing customers get $10 off for 10 months when you subscribe to a DishHD package for the first time.

DISH'n It Up: ViP622

DISH'n It Up: ViP211


Prize: PocketDISH AV700E
Question: How many HD channels, not including locals, does Echostar offer its customers?

Special Guest: Broadband Satellite with WildBlue

Ken Carroll, Chief Operating Officer and Erwin Hudson, Chief Technical Officer

WildBlue is a high-speed internet service, launched about a year ago, over 2-way satellite. Overall it is significantly quicker than dial-up and is always on. The dish is about 26" x 28". The Anik F2 satellite is at 111° with 4 earth stations in the US and 1 in Canada. Each earth station is connected to an internet backbone. The Network Operations Center is in Denver. The dish is no harder to install than a DBS and the PC requires no special software. The WildBlue 1 satellite is scheduled to launch Nov 30 and will triple their capacity.

WildBlue Service Offerings
  Value Select Pro
Download speed (up to) 512 Kbps 1.0 Mbps 1.5 Mbps
Upload speed (up to) 128 Kbps 200 Kbps 256 Kbps


Prize: WildBlue system with installation
Question: What date did the Anik F2 satellite launch? It was just before midnight, so the answer will be the date at the launch site.

Winner: Floyd from Phoenix was able to count 29 HD channels with the aid of his DVR

Q & A

Tom: What is the difference between the Dish 500 and Dish 1000?
Jan Johnson: The Dish 1000 also gets 129° which is for HD in much of the US. The 500+ adds the 118.7 slot, the 1000+ adds 118.7 which is for international and HD locals.

Frances: How do you disable the blue bar across the bottom of the screen when the 622 is paused?
Dan Minnick: You can't disable it, but you can clear it off using the skip ahead or back button.

Travis: Any advantage to waiting for WildBlue? Any bundle price available or should I order now?
Mark: Price not set yet, maybe in about a month. There likely will be a package price.

Nancy: How to archive from 622 to DVD?
Dan: Can play from TV1 through RCA jacks to record in analog form. They are still working on external hard drive archival. Will be out this fall, working through some issues in beta testing including finding a bug in the operating system which led to significant testing for that.

Jason: OTA guide on 622 does not include channels not carried by Dish including PBS HD?
Dan: Working on providing that for at least some of the sub-channels. In testing, even the peanut gallery doesn't have a time-frame.

Jason: Regional Sports Networks in HD?
Mark: Yes, not saying what they are just yet. Around 10 channels coming “very, very soon.”

Donna: If I record a show on TV1 can I watch it on TV2?
Dan: Yes. You can even both watch it at the same time.

Interactive TV

Scott Higgins, Director of Sales. The X-games were in the ch 100 mosaic about a week ago. Next is 12 weeks of college football, with the TBS broadcast feed and 5 different angles. Also coming, Fantasy Football.


Winner: Lee from Haleyville AL gets WildBlue. Anik F2 was launched July 17, 2004.

Q & A

Mr Alvarado: Can't add analog local channels on the 622 like on the 942. Will this be added?
Jan and Mark: Didn't add the analog tuner, didn't feel it was necessary with the digital switchover coming.

David: When will I be able to use the 625's USB port to connect to a laptop or add-on equipment?
Mark: We limit that quite a bit. Content partners are very peculiar about where content can go. You can use a PocketDISH or a digital camera. You can use the analog outputs to get content to a PC, perhaps using a Slingbox.

Several: Pixelization and dropouts on 129°?
Jan: Footprint is not quite as strong in the Pacific NW. Use a Dish 500 for 119/110. Contact your local retailer to get a 24" dish for 129°. Mark adds some of the predominant channels will be put in “boost” mode on or about Wednesday to give more power.

Mike: Will we be getting FoodHD and INHD?
Mark: Can't comment until there's a signed contract.

A couple: Problems with HDMI connector?
Dan: On the 622 there are 2 different problems. Not all TVs implement to the standard. Dish is working with those manufacturers to modify the 622 software to better support those sets. Second problem is that the connector is not durable, not hard to break. If it was working then it stopped, it's probably broken. On TV compatibility, they have found the problem to be on the TV end of the cable.

Javier: Date WildBlue will be available to the customer?
Mark and Ken: Today, go to to locate a retailer, or wait a month or 2 to order through Dish.

Robert: Do different sources (MPEG2, MPEG4, OTA) take up the same amount of disk space on the 622?
Dan: Depends on the source. MPEG4 is currently compressing 25-30% tighter than MPEG2, is expected to improve to up to 75%. OTA varies, but will generally take more.

Many: Various remote control questions
Leslie Harper, Product Communications Mgr: There are many resources:

The show will be rebroadcast throughout August.

Next Charlie Chat: Monday September 11, 2006, 9pm ET, channel 101

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