DirecTV HD DVR - Are Two Cable Lines Needed?by Kimberly Turtenwald
DirecTV offers you the option of purchasing a high-definition receiver with a built-in digital video recorder to watch the latest HD channels along with the capability of recording shows. The setup for the receiver is the same as the analog DirecTV DVR receiver. The capabilities of your DVR, however, are dependent upon the way in which the receiver is hooked up to the satellite dish.
Record Current Channel
If your goal is to record only one show at a time, you need only to connect one cable from your satellite dish to your HD DVR receiver. You can either press the "Record" button on your remote to begin recording the current show or select a show to record in the future from the on-screen channel guide. When the DVR needs to record a television show you set to record in the future, the receiver automatically changes the channel. When you only use one cable, you can't watch something else while a show is recording.
Some people want to watch two things that are on television at the same time. To do this on an HD DVR for DirecTV, you must have two cables plugged into the satellite dish inputs at the back of the receiver. When the show you want to record begins, the DVR draws the signal through the second cable for recording, while the first cable allows you to watch a show on another channel at the same time.
Record Two Shows
As long as you have both cables from the satellite dish connected at the back of the receiver, your HD DVR has the capability of recording two shows at the same time. Each show is brought through one of the cables, just like it does when you record one thing and watch another. However, you don't have the capability of watching a third show while two others record. To record two shows, the channel must be set to one of channels on which you're recording.
Setting up your connection between your satellite and HD DVR receiver can be done one of two ways. If you have two cables that are long enough, you can connect each one into an output on your satellite dish and run them both to the back of your receiver. However, if you don't have two cables that are long enough, you can make do with a longer one and two shorter ones, but you'll also need a splitter. Install the splitter onto the end of the cable that's attached to your satellite dish. Then attach the two shorter cables to the output side of the splitter. Those cables attach to the back of the receiver.