83

Around the house and back again

83

It isn't every day that a DVR comes along that not only delivers a sought-after feature, but also introduces a never-before-seen perk. But lo and behold, that's exactly what Dish has done with the Hopper and Joey. There are a few quirks with the user experience, like the inability to view shows in a list and a cursor that seems to miss its non-existent touchscreen remote. The biggest gotcha, though, might be the fact that the Hopper only works with Dish's TV service, which is typically missing at least one key channel thanks to ongoing carriage disputes. Additionally, it doesn't carry HD versions of all the broadcast networks, like PBS, in all markets and it requires a long-term contract for the privilege of leasing hardware that can never be owned.

If you have Dish already and can't decide if it's worth the upgrade, don't overthink it: This upgrade is a no-brainer. If you're considering switching to Dish and you're worried about not liking the DVR as much as your current provider's, you also have an invalid concern, as the Hopper is as good as any provider-issued model we've tried. In fact, the only person we'd even hesitate recommending this to is the TiVo evangelist or Windows Media Center fan, and even in those cases, we could make a strong argument that the Hopper has more to offer. All that being said, things will get much more interesting when other providers get on the whole-home DVR game and start to offer as many TV-anywhere options as Dish, but for now the Hopper offers some unique, desirable features that you just can't get anywhere else.

Critic reviews

8.5
2 reviews
  • Ease of use
    7.0
  • Design and form factor
    9.0
  • Storage capacity
    9.0
  • Expandability
    8.0
  • Other features (networking, etc.)
    10

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User reviews

8.3
7 reviews
  • Ease of use | 2 comments
    7.1
  • Design and form factor
    8.6
  • Storage capacity
    9.7
  • Expandability
    8.3
  • Other features (networking, etc.)
    8.6
8.0
Engadget Apr 30, 2012

If you have Dish already and can't decide if it's worth the upgrade: it's a no brainer. The only person we'd even hesitate recommending this to is the TiVo evangelist or Windows Media Center fan, and even in those cases, we could make a strong argument that the Hopper has more to offer.

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9.0
PC Mag Apr 23, 2012

It only has three tuners to the TiVo Elite's four and it doesn't suggest and automatically populate your DVR schedule based on your watching habits, but its price, clean design, and easy support for multi-room DVR make it a must-have for Dish Network subscribers.

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7.0
AMCooper63 AMCooper63

The Hopper will not create keyword timers. Hence, you can not program the future TV fall series nor can you record all shows with a keyword like rocket.

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3.0
dyannerb dyannerb

This is a piece of crap!! Wish I had never gotten it!! Can't record and watch over three programs and that is in three rooms!! I want to get rid of it and go back to what I had and I still have to pay the $100 and dish keeps changing my appointments. If I could get rid of Dish I would do that...

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10
TESS0926 TESS0926

Love dish, I have been on all of them like everyone else, and only reason why I left them before because we moved and unable to use a dish. I couldn't the other software companies including verizon Fios. Dish software is flexiible, I can watch movies anywhere, I can rewind or fast forward any tv...

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