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Dish Network 4K Joey Review & Rating
November 24, 2021 – 01:41 pm
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Dish Network Hopper 3The remote is the same redesigned, flat black controller Dish offers with the Hopper 3. It's a 6.3-by-1.9-by-0.8-inch wand with a red band around the edge and rectangular plastic buttons that barely jut up above the surface. It uses a radio connection with the 4K Joey, so you don't need to point the remote directly at the box for it to work. Aux, Input, Sat, and TV buttons sit on the left edge of the remote, offering quick switches between controlling the Hopper 3 and any compatible connected devices. The square navigation pad dominates the top half, just like the rounder navigation pad of the previous version. Various menu buttons including Apps, DVR, Home, and Power sit above the pad, and playback controls, volume and channel rockers, and a number pad sit below.

Hopper Needed
Like the previous Joeys, the 4K Joey is entirely dependent on the connected Hopper for all of its functionality. When hooked up to a Hopper 3 it can access the box's 16 tuners, load any DVR content recorded on its hard drive, and access most of its apps. It can do most of what the Hopper 3 can do, as long as there's a Hopper 3 somewhere in your home to begin with. It connects to the Hopper 3 through coaxial cable, like most other Joeys; if you want a completely wireless connection, the Wi-Fi-based Wireless Joey is the only (non-4K) option.

Unfortunately, the 4K Joey lacks the useful Sports Bar mode the Hopper 3 has. This multi-view mode lets you watch four HD channels at once on a 4K television (or four channels at 540p on a 1080p HDTV), which is a great boon for sports fans and news junies. The 4K Joey can't do this, or use any of the picture-in-picture modes of the Hopper 3. Dish has stated that multi-view features will not be available on any Joey; they'll only work on the Hopper in any multi-room installation.

Dish Network Hopper 3The 4K Joey features Dish's overhauled interface to go with the new remote. You can now access apps through the Joey, including the aforementioned Netflix client. The Apps button pops up an overlay menu that lets you browse different for weather, sports, and social media while you watch television. Many of the apps present their information as an overlay as well, preserving the currently playing channel or DVR content in a section of the screen while you look up information.

Even with the new remote and interface, the 4K Joey functions effectively the same as the Joeys before it. I could access any live television the Hopper 3 could tune to, or any DVR content it had recorded.

4K Support and Conclusions
Just like its name implies, the 4K Joey supports ultra high definition (4K) television. It can output a UHD picture to a connected 4K HDTV, and presumably will support 4K satellite transmissions as soon as they begin. Until 4K channels become widely available, though, you are limited to Dish Network's small 4K on-demand library. A Netflix app can be accessed through the Joey, but support for Netflix's 4K content hasn't yet been added; that feature will be enabled in the near future.

The 4K Joey is a natural upgrade from previous Joeys, and coupled with the new Hopper 3 DVR, it's an excellent set-top box for your whole-home satellite service. The Wireless Joey remains a more flexible box for rooms you might have difficulty running cables to, but the 4K Joey will ensure that you'll be able to use any and all of Dish's UHD content throughout your house. If you have more than one 4K television and want the most future-proof Dish service on all of them, you should pick up a 4K Joey alongside the Hopper 3.

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