Setting up and using timers with DISH is easy

Setting up and using timers with DISH is easy

The DISH timer is your instruction that tells the receiver the programs you want to watch in the future. For most ERDs (external recorders) or VCRs, you select a specific program on a specific channel and tell the receiver how often you want to record that program. Don’t forget to set the receiver to control your VCR.

There are four types

  • The VCR records an event on a preset tape for later viewing. Make sure your VCR is connected and turned on. Also, don’t forget to set the receiver to tell the VCR to start/stop recording.
  • Auto Tune automatically changes the channel to watch the event live.
  • Reminder creates a reminder on the screen when the event is about to be broadcast.
  • Ext automatically changes the channel for live viewing of the event and sends commands to a compatible external device, such as a Pocket DISH, which is connected to the RCA-type or S-Video outputs of your receiver. This option is not available unless you enable the feature. This allows you to record to the external drive instead of recording to the receiver’s hard drive.


Deciding how often you want to watch a program will help you make the best choice:

  • Once records a program once (suitable for movies, sporting events, or other one-off programs.)
  • Weekly records a program once a week, at that time, on this channel.
  • Daily records a program once a day, at that time, on that channel
  • Mon-Fri records a program once a day, Monday through Friday, at the selected time, on this channel.

When the timer starts

For two minutes before recording starts, the receiver can display a digital countdown (timer reminder) on the TV screen. This countdown appears when the program starts. While the countdown is showing, you can do one of the following:

  • Press CANCEL to clear the symbol from the TV screen. This does not stop the timer from starting
  • Press INFO or SELECT to view more information. If you do this, you have the following choices:
  • Select OK to continue with the timer.
  • Select Stop Timer to stop the timer.

Note: Pressing INFO on the timer reminder only works once. Subsequent pressing of INFO brings up the current program information.

Special considerations

  • For locked programs, you must enter the receiver password before you can create an automatic timer. You can create a manual timer for a locked program without an automatic timer. You can create a manual timer for a locked program without entering the password. However, if you do this when the timer is running, the receiver may only display an error or password input menu.
  • For Pay Per View programs, you must order a Pay Per View program when you create a timer for it.
  • For blacked-out programs, if you set a timer for a program that is blacked-out in your area, when the timer is running, the receiver may only display an error.

Reasons why timers are skipped

If the timer is missed, the reason is indicated in the timer list.

  • Priority This timer had a lower priority than other events being recorded at that time.
  • A user has chosen to skip this timer.
  • A duplicate event already has another timer set to record this program.
  • Events exist in the DVR, the program is already recorded and can be seen in the daily schedule list.
  • Not a new episode used for new episode timers. Currently, New Episode is the one that lists the current year in the Program Guide information.
  • Incorrect event for weekly, daily and Monday-Friday timers. If the guide has a different event listed, the timer will be skipped. For example, the timer is set on Saturday for Daily, but the program only airs Monday through Friday, so the timer will be skipped on weekends.

Using the timer list

Use the timer list to:

  • See the general list of timers.
  • Create a manual timer
  • Edit timer.

Set an automatic timer

  • You can create an automatic timer for a future event. The following instructions explain the simplest way to set up an automatic timer.
  • Find the upcoming program you want to record using the program guide or the browse banner. The program can be satellite or broadcast.
  • Select the future event. The timer creation screen is displayed
  • Select the timer frequency
  • Select a timer type.
  • Select Create Timer to finish creating the new timer.

Set a manual timer

  • Press Menu and select Timers.
  • Select Create Timer.
  • Select Timer Frequency
  • Select Timer Type
  • Select the channel (satellite or terrestrial rover) using the ARROWS on the remote control or the NUMBER PAD to find the channel.
  • Select Edit Time
  • Set a start and end time, making sure to specify AM or PM
  • Set the date
  • Select Create Timer
  • Select Done

Delete timer

  • Press MENU and then select Timers
  • Select the timers to delete
  • Select Delete. The timers are deleted


If you try to create event timers on overlapping programs, the receiver displays a screen with the dates and times of both programs. The receiver also displays this screen if the program time has changed, causing one timer to overlap with another. You must delete or edit one of the timers.

Enable recording connection

Your receiver has a timer feature called Record Link. This function sends data (audio, video and other commands) to an external device that you can connect to the receiver’s RCA type or S-video outputs, allowing the program to be stored on an external device.


  • It is very important to leave the receiver enabled to receive updates. This way the receiver can have the latest software and Program Guide information. Make sure the Updates feature is enabled.
  • If your VCR does not respond to receiver commands, see if you have accidentally left the protective film on the receiver’s front panel.

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