HBO Free Preview on DIRECTV (UPDATED: Cinemax too)

Get ready to get wet. HBO is free all weekend. You can watch Aquaman, The Favourite, Widows, First Man, and who’s kidding whom here. You’re probably going to be watching Aquaman again.

HBO is the crown jewel in AT&T’s content strategy and since DIRECTV is their primary content delivery method, it makes sense for these free previews to show up a lot. But that’s not a bad thing.

For people who like “quality television,” you’ll probably want to check out an episode or two of Succession. It’s gotten a lot of buzz from people who like soapy dramas where overly dramatic older guys have cranky things to say.

Updated: The preview also includes Cinemax on channels 515-523. Since Cinemax content isn’t available to stream on a dedicated streaming box app, there’s a lot of content here that you won’t find anywhere else. 

Get started recording

Content that you record during the free preview can be watched long after the preview is over. In the past DIRECTV would also turn on the On Demand version of the channel, but in past months that hasn’t happened with a few previews. But, it’s worth trying to see if you can binge some of your favorite older shows or get caught up with some new favorites.

You’ll find the HBO channels starting at channel 501 and going through channel 511. That’s 11 channels of great content in both English and Spanish that you can choose from. Get that Genie DVR cooking, recording 7 channels at once and in 72 hours you can actually fill up the whole DVR if you want with nothing but HBO content. Watching 40 hours a week it will take you 3 months to empty it.

Enjoy the preview, stay with the channel

Of course AT&T is hoping that you’ll see the value in staying with HBO. If you subscribe to HBO on DIRECTV you also get Cinemax. That’s over 15 channels of live entertainment. You also get the HBO GO app for your streaming device, phone, or computer. You get the MAX GO app for your phone or computer (don’t know why, but you can’t get it on a streaming box.)

You’ll also get the full on demand library for HBO and Cinemax. That ought to keep you busy catching up on the best entertainment from the last 20 years. You can even go back and watch that last episode of The Sopranos that you told everyone you did. That way you can finally understand what everyone was saying about it back then.

To get HBO as a Solid Signal customer, call us at 888-233-7563. Or, go to or, whichever you use to manage your DIRECTV account.

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.