DirecTV vs. DISH Picture Quality: Who Has Better Picture Quality? DirecTV or DISH?

Jason Loomis
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The Similarities between DirecTV and DISH

Both Are Good Options

Both Dish Network and DirecTV are reputable companies with long histories of providing high-quality satellite television services. For the last few years and likely for a large part of the future, most television service providers in the USA, will be two companies: DirecTV and DISH. Both offer outstanding picture quality, HD programming for free with every subscription, access to hundreds of thousands of premium channels, and a variety of different equipment options.

But which is the best for you? The answer depends on a few things: the number of people you will have watching, the programming you crave, the equipment you have handy, and the price you're willing to pay. If you're someone who likes options, DISH Network and DirecTV will delight you equally. You have the option to cancel or continue service at any time without paying anything more.

But when you want to choose the best service for your setup, you have to take a few other things into consideration. Here are the main differences that will help you decide if DirecTV or DISH is the best provider for you.

The Differences between DirecTV and DISH

Picture quality is a top consideration for the majority of TV watchers. If you’re like one of the million-plus viewers who have picked a DIRECTV or DISH Network satellite TV service, you are ready to kick back, relax, and enjoy your favorite channels. Which service is the top dog when it comes to picture quality? Comparing the DirecTV and DISH picture quality will help you decide which service’s picture quality is right for you.

Let’s start with DirecTV satellite TV. The DirecTV service supplies a powerful HD signal that can be displayed in high-definition on any HD television. The second advantage comes from the 120 satellites located in space to provide the state-of-the-art technology and advanced systems used in the DirecTV satellite TV service.

To use the home satellite dish and direct the signal to the viewer’s home, viewers can choose from the two satellite dish options: the round dish or the HD Slimline dish. The HD Slimline dish weighs less than the conventional dish and is perfect for mounting on more intricate surfaces such as roofs and decks.


Vs. DISH: Who Has Better Picture Quality?

Depending on which satellite TV provider you choose, you can get the best DirecTV has to offer or outstanding DISH picture and video quality.

The quality of DirecTV picture and video will depend on many variables, including your location, the type of antenna you have, and the DirecTV channels and HD DirecTV packages you subscribe to.

Internet speed is also going to play an important role. If you choose DirecTV, your Internet connection needs to be at least 8 Mbps to avoid buffering.

That means you’ll need to make sure you have a high speed plan. The same goes for DISH.

DISH also requires an Internet connection, and the minimum needed is 3 Mbps.

Both DISH and DirecTV offer a variety of HD plans. They need to be HD capable, but they don’t necessarily need to be HD packages.

You can get standard HD programming for both DirecTV and DISH, which, for the most part, should be enough for most TV watching.


Vs. DirecTV: A Comparison of Picture Quality (vs. quality of programming)

DirecTV has slightly better picture quality than DISH.

The amount of difference in quality between the two providers is minimal. The difference really only exists when you have a crystal-clear HDTV, (1080p) and you’re watching a channel that’s in high definition.

DirecTV has brighter colors (although in all honesty this is highly dependent on the type of TV you are watching it on), and slightly less pixelation.

DISH is exactly the same as DirecTV, this is why they can bundle the two together at a discounted cost, and people don’t like that.

If you're not watching a lot of HD channels and you're not using an HD television, you will likely not notice any difference in picture quality between either provider. If you are the type of person who cares about picture quality and likes to notice the tiny little differences, you may notice a slight difference between the two.

As long as you have an HDTV and an HD programming package, you should have no problems whatsoever with picture quality with either one of these providers.

Questions Regarding DirecTV vs. DISH Picture Quality

Who Has Better Picture Quality? DirecTV or DISH?

The quality of DirecTV and DISH Network satellite television pictures received often depends on the kind of equipment you have and where you are situated to the dish.

The main factors that affect your DirecTV and DISH Network picture quality are:

  • The type of dish you choose (DISH Network and direct TV satellite TV require a circular satellite dish)
  • The direction you install the dish
  • The kind of environment that you have your dish installed in
  • The range of the satellite signal that reaches to your dish

When you place a satellite dish in your yard, you should aim it towards the south as its natural direction is towards the south. It also shouldn’t be higher than 45 degree at the prime focus.

Also, there are some environmental factors that can lead to the quality of your DirecTV and DISH picture being degraded. For example, the dish might have been affected by storms, thunderstorms, or high winds. Furthermore, trees and tall buildings in your path can also block the signal.

If none of these factors has disturbed the satellite signal, it is possible that the dish might need repair or a move, because the quality of your DirecTV and DISH picture will be poor. The dish might also pick up interference if it is lying on something conductive.

The Conclusive Answer: DirecTV

Vs. DISH – Who Has The Best Picture Quality?

If you ask anyone which satellite TV provider has the best picture quality, they will likely answer "DirecTV," hands down. The fact is, DirecTV definitely has the best picture quality, but only if you have the right plan and the right equipment.

The DirecTV DVR/HD receivers allow you to enjoy the crispest image, with the same level of detail as HDTV. So, if you have DirecTV's highest package you will indeed get the best picture quality available, but if you have the second or third tier, your DirecTV picture won’t be any better than DISH’s.

DirecTV's standard definition picture, while still better than most other providers, is definitely not on the same level as their stunning HDTV quality picture. So, you will need to decide what's most important to you: having the most channels, or having the best picture quality.

Of course, a third option would be to switch to DISH. Although, even after you switch, you can keep the satellite TV dish and use it for DISH Network, which is the second-largest satellite TV provider in the US.