MTS TV review after first two weeks - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-02-20, 08:35 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba
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MTS TV review after first two weeks

After being hesitant to switch from Star Choice for years, the Ultimate HD package and availability in my area were enough to provoke a switch.

It didn't hurt that Shaw Direct (formerly Star Choice) lied to me when I was asking them to match the MTS offer by suggesting the quality of MTS was lesser because it was "cable."

Having used Direct TV when in the U.S. recently, I can say the picture quality and program guide are on par.

I do not get any pixellation or macro-blocking at all with Ultimate. The HD picture is stunning.

I also appreciate the speed of the IPG, the translucent background, and the mini PIP of the program you are scanning.

The DVR has performed very well after an initial glitch and reset on the second day.

Recording two programs while watching another is surprisingly useful, especially during the Olympics. In fact... it's the best way to watch the Olys. Watch one station while recording the other and then scan for highlights.

Another plus is the Weather Network. You actually get the "local forecast" when it comes on in the loop. That was a major detraction with Star Choice.

The new wireless hub is also more stable and has a stronger signal than my old N Router, so there's a pleasant side effect of the switch. I can download songs onto my Xbox while checking Facebook on the iMac with no lag.

So far, so good.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-02-21, 11:21 AM
 
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And where do you think that MTS gets most of it's HD signals from?

I'm not washed up yet
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-02-21, 12:39 PM
fmr
 
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I don't know, but, you may be able to enlighten us. I'm pretty sure it's not from Star Choice (Shaw Direct) since I've been able to compare both, and they're not the same at all.

Right now, I have a feeling some/most come from BEV, but the local US networks (Minneapolis/Fargo/Grand Forks) may be pulled directly, unless they can pull the ones from Dish network/Direct TV sats.

After a month and a half with MTS, I get the same impression than John White (also switched from SD), in terms of technical service, but I couldn't expect a worse experience than SD's system. If they (MTS) don't screw up my second bill (first one was terrible, even the retention department could not understand how it got screwed up this much), I most likely will stay.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-02-22, 09:34 AM
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Bill Screw ups

Beware! My billing was a bit complex because I got phone set up 1 month before TV and internet (scheduling issues, plus we weren’t watching much TV that month). So my first bill came during the month that TV + internet were set up. It was out about $130.00!!!!!!!!! The staff was very helpful in fixing it.

Bill #2 was still off by about $30.00, and I received a separate bill for my internet. I had to call and get if fixed – again.

I’m crossing my fingers bill #3 is right. If not I’m going to ask them to discount my bill for all my troubles – I mean seriously, get it together. This will be my first normal bill though after the “first month free” stuff has worn off for everything. A friend who switched also had troubles with his bill, so don’t get your hopes up.

Anyone notice MTS was doing 3 months free right now for switching? That’s awesome – makes me wish I was with Shaw so that I could switch.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-02-23, 04:46 PM
 
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I was with MTS up until late last year because they kept screwing up our bills. It all started in August when I signed up for internet. Instead of bundling that with phone and tv, they sent a seperate bill with a different account number. Then they fixed it and gave us a new home services account. Then they claimed they never received our first internet payment. Eventually they figured out they had the money, in our old phone account, but they couldn't figure out why the money was never moved to our new account. Eventually they sorted it all out, or so we thought. When we cancelled our service due to all these fustrations and Shaw's great offer, they screwed up again because of the cancellation date and we were charged more money in October, then in November they credited cable and phone but charged full month for internet and they charged us like $500 for unreturned set top boxes and remotes, which we had in fact returned. Called them and they confirmed they had received the hardware, yet they charged us for it. So, finally they credited us for those charges. I don't understand why they didn't confirm receipt of the returned hardware before charging us for it and why they continue to make so many mistakes and why they make things so confusing. If they hadn't given us seperate accounts for tv/phone and internet and then created a new seperate account with everything it would have probably saved a lot of headaches.

The only major problem I ever had with MTS was their billing department and also that we had to wait 7 days with no tv service for them to come and fix it back a year ago or so, which was also unacceptable. Now we moved everything - tv, internet, and phone to Shaw and everything has been good so far. Anyhow, sorry about the rant, hope its not as confusing as it seems, lol.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-02-24, 06:11 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donnybrook View Post
And where do you think that MTS gets most of it's HD signals from?
As mentioned by someone else, MTS gets most of their channels either directly (from Toronto or the US over fibre), direct from sat. if authorized in Canada, or resold through Bell Expressvu. MTS does obtain some channels through Shaw Broadcast Services (SBS) which is the commercial/wholesale side of "Shaw Direct", those generally include channels that are not available direct or through Bell, or are from Corus Entertainment (which is 'pretty much' owned by Shaw).
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-02-28, 05:56 PM
fmr
 
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Can you tell us which channels they get from SBS ? Since SBS provides channels for Shaw Direct and I have both (SD and MTS), I don't see the same quality of signals on the channels I subscribe to.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-02-28, 08:36 PM
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One thing I do know...MTS-HD is about 9 seconds behind BELL-HD.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-03-02, 07:52 PM
 
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I'm pretty sure all the Movie Central/EA channels are from Anik F1R (Shaw Direct).

- As for the delay, yes - this is the case both with MTS Classic and Ultimate TV, it's because the incoming feeds (whether direct or from sat) have to be decoded then encoded again to be ingested into the system.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-03-03, 01:51 PM
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The delay can certainly make for a disappointing phone call with someone who is watching the same sport as you...if one team scores
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-03-04, 09:35 AM
 
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Quote:
The delay can certainly make for a disappointing phone call with someone who is watching the same sport as you...if one team scores
What are they doing dialing a phone number? They should be jumping up and down, or downing a beverage in celebration.
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-03-04, 02:31 PM
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I meant if you are both watching the same game as you are talking...and then someone scores and you cheer...while the person on the other end with MTS says what happened...then oh
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-03-04, 11:11 PM
 
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Quote:
I meant if you are both watching the same game as you are talking...and then someone scores and you cheer...while the person on the other end with MTS says what happened...then oh
What are you doing on the phone during a game?
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 2010-03-08, 09:59 PM
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Generally talking...with a side of listening
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 2015-05-03, 10:08 AM
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MTS means "eMp-Ty-Service"

All I know is that MTS TV pixilates (breaks up) and even freezes all the time. Often, the picture vanishes and a message appears on my screen saying I should contact MTS. Unbelievable. As I write, I have been without TV service for two days and am waiting for an MTS technician to fix the problem!

My internet goes down all too often and I have to wait on the phone forever to get a technician to walk me through the tedious process of restoring service.

The MTS PVR screws up often. I taped an HBO show (Bill Maher) and the PVR broke the show up into 5 taped segments with gaps between them! How is that even possible?

I'm fed up with MTS. Is Shaw any better? Well, everyone I know who uses Shaw is happy and has no problems.

There are other alternatives which my friends are using which provide unlimited TV shows and movies without cable and monthly fees. So that may be the solution.

Remember the good old days when TV was free and it WORKED? Sigh.
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