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Comparison Between Satellite Providers DirecTV and DISH Network


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Equipment Costs
New DirecTV subscribers must pay a leasing or upgrade receiver fee upon signing up for service. You won't buy your receiver. You return it to DirecTV after finished with their service.

DISH Network is known for their leasing of equipment but now they also sell receivers, although the cost to buy a receiver is high. But, you won’t have to pay the monthly leasing fee for every receiver you own.

Since the lease or upgrade charge is at the time of choosing service you don’t have a monthly leasing fee on DirecTV.

Customers usually get the standard receivers for free with both companies. Standard receivers are digital devices without DVR or HD capabilities. As far as HD and DVR receivers:

  • Digital Video Recorders or DVR Receivers: DirecTV has an upgrade fee of $99 but there is usually an instant rebate that covers the cost of the full cost of the receiver - making it free. DISH Network doesn’t charge an upgrade fee but they have a leasing fee of about $6/month or you can buy it for $349. A second DVR upgrade through DISH Network costs about $100.
  • High Definition (HD) Receivers: DirecTV has the same deal as the DVR - new subscribers can upgrade for $99 but there is an instant rebate that gives you the HD receiver for free. DISH Network does the same for their HD receiver as their DVR. You pay a monthly leasing fee or you can buy it for $249.
  • HD-DVR Combo Receivers: DirecTV has an upgrade fee of $299 but they sometimes have a $100 rebate, which brings the price down to $199. DISH Network has the same deal as their DVR and HD receiver. You can lease the receiver for a small monthly charge or buy it for $499.

Advantage: DirecTV. In terms of equipment costs over the long-term, DirecTV has a better deal in place because their lease fee is a one-time cost (if any) compared to DISH Network's monthly fee.

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