Product Review (March 2011) - DISH Network
Sling Adapter for the ViP® 722 DVR

By Kevin Nakano


ViP 922DISH Network now offers their customers full remote access to their DVR using Sling Media technology. Parent company Echostar acquired Sling Media several years ago with the strategy of integrating the Sling (remote access) technology into the Dish Network line of DVRs. This occurred with the release of the highly regarded ViP® 922, which by the way works extremely well. For customers using the ViP® 722 or 722K, Dish has released the new Dish Sling Adapter, which gives them this remote access feature. Customers can use their computer or mobile device to control and stream content on their DVR from any location that has internet access. This includes watching either prerecorded programs or live TV. Dish is currently offering this adapter for only $99 at their website.

The Dish Sling Adapter measures just under 4-inches by 8-inches and sits just over 1/2-inch high with the rubber feet. The adapter is made from metal and works as a large heatsink, pulling heat away from the electronics in the center of the unit. Installation is easy with the user simply connecting the Sling adapter's USB plug into the DVR. The red LED will illuminate on the Sling adapter and a message will appear on the screen indicating the adapter has been detected. To be able to take advantage of the Sling adapter, the DVR must be attached to a high speed internet connection. The ViP® 722 or 722K HD DuoDVR can stream content while someone else is watching something completely different on the same DVR. That's right, the person remotely accessing the DVR can watch live or pre-recorded high definition content while someone else at home is viewing his or her own program in high definition as well. We even tried to access the same pre-recorded program remotely and out of sync with the home viewer and it performed flawlessly.

Sling IndicatorThe Sling indicator displayed in the upper left corner of the information banner lets the home user know when someone is accessing the DVR remotely. We only have a single HDTV display connected to our ViP® 722. We did not see any problems when establishing a remote connection to the DVR. In fact, it was rather surprising that another user can access the DVR without any performance degradation for the home viewer. DISH has done an excellent job integrating the Sling adapter with the ViP® 722.


DISH Remote Access
Users will need to set up an account and log into the DISH Remote Access website. If more than one DVR box is registered, the user can select which one to control. This gives the remote access user multiple places to stream content. A green indicator next to the selected DVR lets the user know the unit is communicating over the network. Selecting the GRID tab displays the program guide up to a week in advance. The NOW tab displays content that is currently available and includes both pre-recorded DVR programs as well as live content. The TODAY tab displays programs that will be available today. The LATER tab is used with the search option to identify any future programs with the search criteria. The DVR tab displays all pre-recorded DVR programs. The tabs can also use pre-defined filters to only show programs related to
TV Shows, Movies, Radio, and Sports.

DISH Mobile Remote AccessMobile Device Support
DISH Remote Access is also available for free on a wide variety of portable devices including Android phones, Apple's iPod Touch, iPhone, and iPad. This application allows users to program and control their DVRs using the current programming guide. Simply select the show displayed in the guide and you can instantly set up the recording (Record, Record All, or Record New). DISH Remote Access is easy to use and fast, but it does limit you to only 5 recordings during any 30 minute period.

Sling MobileSlingPlayer Mobile
There is also a mobile Sling Player application for streaming content from your DVR. Unfortunately, there is a one-time charge for the application and it is not as easy to use as the DISH Remote Access app. When using my Android-based HTC Incredible to control my DVR, there was a noticeable latency when issuing commands. This is likely due to the time it takes commands to travel to my DVR and back to my portable device. Speed increased significantly when connecting to a WiFi hotspot. Fortunately, the video was smooth with a good signal once the content started streaming.


HD Streaming
The Dish Sling Adapter is capable of streaming content at a fairly high rate, supporting a high definition picture when using a computer. Our tests showed that we were able to sustain around 8 Mbps (8 megabits per second) while watching HD programs on a laptop (HP Pavilion dv7). The result was video that looked stunning. What was more amazing was the content was coming from our own living room whether we were ten feet or thousands of miles away. Picture quality will depend on the available network bandwidth, so if you are connected to a slow network, video quality will suffer.


Conclusion
The Dish Sling Adapter is hard to pass up with the current $99 deal offered on DISH's website. Once installed, customers will be able to stream content from their DVR to their computer or mobile device and have the option of watching live TV. Installation is a breeze and the free DISH Remote Access on a computer can be used to watch programs, some even in high definition.

- Kevin Nakano






OPPO BDP-103 Blu-ray Player




Review System

Projector: Anthem LTX-500v Full 1080p High-Definition LCoS Projector
Screen: Stewart Filmscreen 100" FireHawk Screen on a Luxus Deluxe ScreenWall
Preamplifier/Processor: Parasound AVC-2500U THX-Ultra DTS/DD Preamp/Processor
Amplification: Parasound HCA-2205AT THX-Ultra Five Channel Amplifier
Front Speakers: Miller & Kreisel S-150THX (L+R) and S-150AC (Center) Speakers
Rear Speakers: Miller & Kreisel SS-250 Tripole® Surround Speakers
Subwoofer: Two Miller & Kreisel MX-350THX MkII THX-Ultra Push-pull Subwoofers
Room Treatments: Echo Buster panels and Bass Buster towers
Satellite Receiver: Dish Network ViP722 HDTV Satellite and Terrestrial Receiver
Blu-ray Player: OPPO BDP-95 Universal Audiophile Blu-ray Player
Media Server: Sonos ZonePlayer ZP80
Remote Control: Remote Technologies Inc. T3-V Controller
HDMI Cable: Accell UltraRun 45-meter 1080p Cable
A/V Cables: Ultralink Platinum and Advanced Performance Series Cables


Review - At a Glance


DISH Network - Sling Adapter


What You Need to Get Started

Sling Adapter only works with ViP® 722 or ViP® 722k HD DuoDVR receivers.

High-Speed Internet Connection (Cable/DSL/Fiber)

At least 1.5 Mbps downstream bandwidth (WAN or LAN)

For DISH Remote Access Mobile App: At least 150 Kbps upstream bandwidth

For DISH Remote Access Computer Browser: At least 600 Kbps upstream bandwidth

Additional requirement for HD viewing:

LAN bandwidth of at least 3.0 Mbps

Note: The faster your Broadband Internet connection, the higher quality your video will be.

If you are unsure of your connection's ability to handle remote viewing, please run our Connectivity Test Tool:

In order to watch your home TV remotely, your HD DVR receiver will need to be connected to high-speed Internet service. For complete details on how to get connected, visit Get Connected.

 

Recommended Routers

Linksys

D-Link

D-Link

WRT400N Simultaneous Dual-Band Wireless-N Router

DGL-4500 Xtreme N Gaming Router

EBR-2310 Ethernet Broadband Router

 

Hardware & Software Requirements for DISH Remote Access

Windows XP/Vista/7 OS

Pentium IV class processor

Internet Explorer 7.0 or above, Firefox 3.5 or above, or Safari 4.0 or above

High-Speed Internet connection

Additional requirements for HD streaming:

  • 2.4 Ghz Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor
  • 2 GB or more of RAM
  • Video Acceleration support desirable on Video Graphics Card
Mac OS X 10.5.7 or later

2.8 Ghz Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor

2 GB or more of RAM

Safari 4.0 or above or Firefox 3.5 or above

Broadband Internet connection

 

If you are unsure of whether your computer meets the minimum system requirements for the Sling Adapter's remote viewing capabilities, please contact your computer's manufacturer for support.

If you are unsure of whether your web browser meets the minimum version requirements for the Sling Adapter's remote viewing capabilities, please visit the developer's website to download the latest version.

DISH Sling™ Adapter Information



Company Information
Echostar Satellite L.L.C.
DISH Network
9601 S. Meridian Blvd.
Englewood, CO 80112

URL: www.dishnetwork.com


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