Satellite TV vs. Cable


I just got my GMP bill and was notified of yet another price increase.  We have a their digital silver plan and it will now cost me about $55 per month.

Can any provide information on satellite tv services in St. mary's?  Are they any good?  Are they the same or cheaper than cable in the long run?  Should I install it myself or pay to have it installed?

Any help would be appreciated.

jazz lady

~*~ Rara Avis ~*~
PREMO Member
Alex -

I've been a DirecTV subscriber for about 2 years now and absolutely love it - I will NEVER go back to cable.  While satellite prices are comparable to cable, you get many more channels for the price with your dish.  Plus there are a variety of packages you can subscribe to - HBO, Showtime, Sports, Family Pak, etc - each with many more channels.

One drawback at first was the lack of local channels, but a while back they offered the local Washington affiliates for NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX, and the national feed for PBS for $5 a month.  Last week, they expanded this (WITHOUT raising the price!) to include all three Washington PBS stations, Channel 20 (WDCA), Channel 50, and a couple of other ones.  The only thing we don't get that cable offers are the Baltimore stations and the local government channels.

Reception is great - only time I ever have a problem is in extremely heavy rain, but I think that is due to the position of the dish (it gets deluged by rain running off the roof) rather than the technology.  The clarity is awesome; the variety and number of channels is wonderful; the price is good - what more could you want?  :)  :yay:

Look for specials on installation - ours was free and included in the price of the dish ($99) - I bought the dish from Wal-Mart in St. Mary's.  I called DirecTV, set up an appointment for installation, and the installer showed up on time (actually, he WAS EARLY) and installed it quickly.  With a few quick tests to tune it for maximum reception, he was done.  We haven't had to touch it since.

We live in Calvert County but are building a house in St. Mary's and will definitely take the dish with us.  DirecTV will actually come out to your new house and reinstall the dish for you!


(Edited by jazz lady at 12:29 pm on Jan. 16, 2002)


I agree 100% with the above.

As for installing it yourself... I did mine, and it wasn't all that difficult.  (I'm not the most mechanically adept person in the world; I'm one of those people who knows just enough to be dangerous, but not enough to actually do anything useful.)  If you have a clear line on the southwestern sky and a friend to stand inside and tell you when your signal's coming in, you're most of the way there already.

However, this was out of sheer impatience on my part.  If the pros will do it at no cost anyway (and I did have this option as well), why bother?  Especially if they're as good as Jazz Lady says. :)

For me, though, the choice was clear.  Most of what I watch is on Comedy Central and the Sci-Fi Channel, two stations that GMP showed no signs of picking up in the near future.  And don't even get me going on their horrible modem service.  (See other post.)

Since the cable company has no competition in this area, the only way we can make them take notice of our dissatisfaction is to abandon them for better service.  It is my opinion (and the opinion of most of my friends and family) that DirecTV is the way to go.


Thanks,  I spoke to a few others who agreed.  I will most likely be checking out the specials from Wal-mart and Radio Shack this weekend.


New Member
I did the DirectTV thing for a while...finding out it was a total waste of money.  I was never home, therefore...never watching all the extra channels.

I've been happy with basic cable for the last several months and don't planning on making the switch, again!



I agree, basic would be fine for me too.  I watch so little tv that when I got married I had a 13" black and white set that was just fine.  

However, my husband would have a fit without his tv.  As soon as he gets up it goes on.  Even if he is not watching it, it has to be on.  The radio does not work, it has to be the tv.


Well i had DAVE also it wasnt all that. Dont get me wrong it has alot of channels you normaly dont get But i stoped paying for it, then found a way to get it for free for a couple of years which was good. THEN DAVE Killed that idea. So now im back to cable. Im happy with that.



I've had DirecTV since 1995 when the hardware was about $800 plus a couple of hundred to install it. But, I love it! We just added UltimateTV service (similar to TiVo) and that's really cool too! I'd say that to get the most out of DirecTV, go with a TiVi or UltimateTV receiver. If you go to DirecTv.Com you can buy online and have the stuff installed by a pro too!

If only I could get DSL where I live, I'd be a happy camper!