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Having both system(at one time)I can say it depends on the channel. I'm not that technical in this area so can't say why some channels appeared better on BTV, while others appeared better on SD. BTV in all lookked better to me at the time I had both systems. As how it presently, that I can't comment on as I no longer have either system to compare them to each other?
 

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Bell gets many of its signals from Shaw. Shaw Communications is responsible for providing and managing the distribution of television channels to cable companies and Bell Satellite. It only stands to reason that the originating service would have a slightly better picture.
 

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Telesat just operates them as spacecraft.

Bell uplinks totally themselves (from a facility in Don Mills, Toronto), and source some channels through the commercial arm of Shaw Direct.
 

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I think for the most part they provide a reasonable prduct and service comparable to many others.
Their service and picture quality appears to be a notch higher than others I've experienced.

Where I feel a little let down is their inability to makes reasonable steps to keep the pace of new technology and HD content.
I do recognise they do quite well given the purse strings they have to pull.

They seem to have embarked into new areas with product development and as it is new for a Television Service provider, the growing pains are quite noticable.

And finaly, their ability to communicate with any acuracy, their plans to resolve major problems or enhancements is quite frustrating.
Just curious: Your rating is quite high (A-) for as many serious issues as you pointed out. So, I'm just wondering if you actually endorse Shaw Satellite, particularly with regards to other Canadian Satellite providers - if you have any experience there - or are you nit-picking? lol - maybe I'm the one who's being picky, but I really am interested in satellite services and I am very much the ignorant in this venue.

Thanks.
 

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@RapWarrior, you're asking a question of a post that is 11 years old from a poster who last visited this site 9 years ago. Not sure you'll get a response.

I've moved your post to this thread discussing the two satellite providers in Canada.

I would suggest that you check out the channels/packages that each one offers, as well as the equipment to ensure you'll be happy with one of them. Neither sat provider has "the latest and greatest" equipment and they seem to be mostly "coasting" for several years in terms of technology, especially Bell, since they've been concentrating more on their "Fibe" technology. I assume you live in an area that can only be serviced by satellite?
 

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Things have drastically changed since that post as well. I too would rate them high. And I was a former Bell satellite customer who made the switch. Shaw Direct's receivers are still not quite on par with Bell, however, I have not had any issues with them. Picture Quality is slightly better then Bell on some channels and quite a bit better on others (US channels). Once the MPEG 4 switch is complete they will be substantially better on those channels. Cost is about the same, however for the same price I paid with Bell I actually get quite a bit more with Shaw. Shaw charges 5.99 for multiple receivers, however if one dies they replace it. Bell you can rent the receivers for 7.99 for HD and $15 for pvr and you have to pay that for each receiver. They will replace them if they die. Or if you own them, then once they die you are out of luck for replacements. Bell very rarely adds any new HD channels. All their focus seems to be on Fibe tv now. Vision HD and MLB HD were the last two in the spring, and then a bunch of small market local CTV's in August as they were trying to create a NFL Sunday Ticket package and air every game. That backfired on them. Shaw has added 27 HD channels to the lineup this year with plenty more to come in the next 2 years, as they move to only HD channels. Shaws equipment is cheaper to buy too and in my opinion has a better looking guide.

If I were to have to make the decision again today, I would choose Shaw over Bell easily.
 

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I have had both Bell and Shaw and like Shaw better than for the same reasons as Mark above. The only thing I don't like about Shaw is the audio dropouts. Yes it is only off my recordings but still sucks.
 

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I also like the no simsubs on the American channels, and if you do get them they are local simsubs, not Toronto and Vancouver for the entire country.

I have not experienced any audio drop outs yet.
 

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I don't see a lot of difference between current Bell or Shaw satellite receivers. That's a fairly recent development though. Shaw's HD receivers were a lot worse than Bell's for many years. Bell downgraded their PVRs and Shaw upgraded their PVRs a few years ago so now they are about the same.
 

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Thanks very Much,
If anyone has an opinion on Shaw Direct, Telus Sattelite, or Bell, which is best, better than another etc, would be greatly appreciated.
Thank You
 

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Considering switching from Bell to Shaw Direct...

What does the comparison look like as far as HD channels go?

When you get timeshift...do you get all the Network HD channels?
 

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The comparison for HD channels, there isn't much difference. I would give the slight edge to Shaw Direct. I do find certain channels do look sharper and crisper, especially with text. Other channels can show some macroblocking that did not show on Bell, however once Shaw finishes converting all channels to MPEG 4 that will clear up that issue, as it has with the channels already converted. The US networks look quite a bit better on Shaw Direct.

Timeshift does include all network HD channels, not just what they think you should get. I know when I was on Bell I got CBC Edmonton and the Montreal channels, but CTV from both locations and the small market networks were not available. Shaw Direct includes all of them. There are no forced restrictions.

Also, simsubbing is done correctly with Shaw Direct. The US networks will only be subbed out with your local channel if available instead of with Toronto and Vancouver feeds. For me, this has resulted in no substitutions on any US networks to date.

Another thing to note, in a year and a half - two years, all channels on Shaw Direct will be HD and all SD channels will be dropped.
 

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@dm_4u if you are within the contours of the local CTV, Global and City stations, Shaw Direct is required to simsub the U.S. networks. Since Winnipeg doesn't have a CTV Two station, those programs won't be simsubbed.

Bell currently has much more extensive CTV timeshifting compared to Shaw Direct, as discussed in conjunction with the NFL broadcasts.
 

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Technically both Bell and Shaw Direct have the same for CTV timeshifting. Bell has more CTVHD channels, but the majority of them are in Ontario and some in Atlantic Canada, all the same timezones, so for timeshifting you can't really say Bell has more. Shaw covers all the timezones that Bell offers, and offers more smaller market HD channels that Bell doesn't, as well as other CTV channels that Bell has but doesnt offer everyone. For example, when I was on Bell in Saskatchewan, I did not get access to CTV Montreal, Edmonton, or Lloydminster in HD to name a few, despite the channels were on Bell. With Shaw, they do not limit what locals you get based on where you live. You get them all, plus ones that are not available on Bell (NTV HD, other Globals, etc). Bell only has Global Toronto, Calgary, and Vancouver in HD (and Montreal depending on your package). Shaw has Global from Halifax, Montreal, Toronto, Thunder Bay, Winnipeg, Regina, Lloydminster, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver all in HD and NFL Sunday Ticket.
 

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Bell now has 15 CTV HD channels if you have time shifting, including Montreal. You're right that the Bell has fewer time shifting channels for the other networks.
 

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Thanks for the info on the HD channels guys...it appears Shaw is still moving forward...whereas Bell has stagnated.

Would anyone care to share their experience with Shaw Direct's HDPVR?
 

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I have not had any issues with the HDPVR from Shaw. I heard a lot of complaints and in ways Bells is better, but they both have pros and cons. I for one really enjoy the smart pvr feature with Shaw Directs pvr. I pick which shows I want to record, set to smart record, and it schedules the recordings itself and manages to avoid any conflicts. With Bell, you have to know if you have conflicting recordings and change it yourself.
 

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I have a couple 630's. One operates in dual tuner mode with an external drive and the another in single tuner mode and no external drive. Can't complain about the operation of either of them. One does have many more shows scheduled to record and it does take a little longer to schedule when you add a new program. For the most part they work flawlessly. I have had a couple recording conflicts but by changing priorities I was able to resolve them. I have the occasional spontaneous reboot about once every 2 to 3 months. Can't see a pattern because it has happened while watching live, and recorded programs with and without a program recording in the background. Fortunately the boxes do reboot fairly quickly so if it's a live program I don't miss much. I like the ability to hide channels I don't watch or Standard Definition duplicates of HD channels. I don't know if the audio dropouts discussed elsewhere in the forum are hardware related or whether it is an uplink or encoding issue. I don't experience it that often but that would be my biggest issue.
 

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How do the Shaw receivers compare to Bells units today? Has shaw updated?

Currently on Expressvu with 9242 and 9400 receivers, but wondering if Shaw would be a better value.
 
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