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Satellite TV

October 04, 2009 — BarryK
I'm planning to install a satellite TV system, as currently I have a terrestrial TV antenna on a high mast that can only receive one channel, ABC1, and that with (sometimes) considerable snow.

Here in Australia, Optus has two satellites with free channels, C1 (has ABC1 and some commercial channels) and D1 (has ABC2) -- there is more, such as SBS and some foreign channels. They are on the ku-band.

The cheapest supplier I can find in Western Australia is these guys (AU$295):

To receive from both satellites, I need two dishes (90cm dishes cost $55 each) and a cable-coupler thingy called a "DiSeqc/tone burst switch".

Although these channels are "free", I do have to purchase a smartcard, included in the above package, but AU$85 separately (actually, I priced all the items in the above package, and it adds up to less than the package price!).

I think that I understand basically what all the parts are for -- anyway, they provide an installation guide.

I'll also buy a few extras, like roof bracket mounts, cable, compass ($10), signal-finder ($15).

My little house with 3 dishes on top is going to look very hi-tech!

Anyone reading this who has done an installation? Any tricky things to watch out for? -- yeah, well I suppose, getting the dish pointed right at the satellite is the hardest part!

Optus D1:


Cable installation
Username: dogone
Advice? Clean, tight, dry connections with new, quality cable. Short cable runs. Avoid long, close, parallel runs along other cable or mains. Expect ground loops (8-). Most important! View selectively (Cable TV does not givith energy, but takith away). Eat right. Exercise. Give 4.3.1 all the time it needs and deserves. Relax. Enjoy each morning. Green tea is a godsend.

cable installation II
Username: dogone
"continued... Minimize connections. Avoid "tees" and couplers. Include drip loops before penetrations (before and after inline connections). Minimum 6 inch bend radius. Staples/clips should not deform the cable jacket. RTV (silicone adhesive) is handy stuff.

satellite tv
Username: ttuuxxx
"Back in Canada I installed a few, because basically you buy them in Canada not rent them like in Australia-foxtel, The Canadian dishes have a nice meter strength that displays on the tv, so you move it up/down/left/right and the signal will increase/decrease great for onetime installs, saves buying extra equipment:) The main issue that I've found with satellites is the base you mount it on. satellites tend to trap the wind and if not securely attached they will flex with the wind and the station will be lost. My house is a steel frame house and the cable company wouldn't attach to the roof because the metal is too flexible, So when your looking for a mounting location just make sure its solid :) ttuuxxx

Username: ferikenagy2
"if you have ony 2 satellite there is much better the statical solution (with 2 separate dishes or 2 ultiplexe LNB) than with a moving actuated dish because yo can instanty comute between satelites, it cost less and it is easier to cath the satellite positon. If the angle between these 2 satelites is to big (greater than 20 grade), the only solution is 2 separate dishes as you planned. Pay attention to the LNB to match the receiver it means mainy 2 things the oscillator frequency ( for thereceiver to copute the rigt frequenc for eac channel) and the way it commute betwen vertical and horizontal polarization. I prezume this will e OK because you buy it both from same provider. When mounting LNB pay attenion not to reverse the polarizatio of lnb , some lnb permit to be mounted in any way! cathing the satelite: Digital receviers have an special function to help to catch satellite, instead of displaying one tv channel will display the signal strenght of any received satelite. The dish should be oriented both horizontally and vertically (elevation) thats why it is sometimes difficult to catch he satelite. Some dishes have marked on them the elevation grades so ou can fix th satellite elevation apriori, in this case pay atention that that the dish support to be mounted perfect vertically, this will guarantee that elevation angle will be correct so you will have only to rotate horizontly the dish to catch the satellite. After you catch the sateliteyou can proceed to make some tweak to maximze signal strenght, by slightly correct elevation I hope you will have somebody to help, it is much easyer in two, one to move the dish and second to see signal strength on receiver

Keep out the rain
Username: drongo
"Don't know what the weather is like in Western Australia (isn't it mostly desert?) but I guess you get heavier rain than here in the UK when it does rain. Self-amalgamating tape to cover all of your joints and connectors is a must. It's what all the professionals use. also drip-loops are always good. Once you get water inside the cables signal strength just disappears. Dual LNBs on one dish used to be popular here in the UK but the satellites can't be too far apart in the orbit.

The two Optus satellites
Username: BarryK
"Optus C1: Azimuth = 59.39 degrees Elevation = 34.94 degrees Optus D2: Azimuth = 55.65 degrees Elevation = 38.18 degrees Optus D1: Azimuth = 62.80 degrees Elevation = 31.62 degrees ...what do you reckon, could I mount two LNBFs on the one dish? I want the Optus C1 and D1. The FAQ at SciTeq site states need two dishes: Online calculator: Here are the Optus satellites: ...they even cover Hawaii.

Lyngsat Maps
Username: janeee
"Free TV from Australia Optus D1 at 160.0E Optus C1 at 156.0E

One dish in the garden should do
Username: Hubi
"I installed my 1m sat-dish in the garden. Convenient hight to access all components. Two LNBs for 2 satellites, 13E and 19.2E. Since I'm located geographically 16E, the elevation for both LNBs is equal. With 4 difference of 2 sats, 1 dish should suffice, depending on the focalpoint distance of the dish. When finetuning the LNB, consider in turning the LNB. The more the sat is not positioned exactly to north. Cable length from the LNBs to my receivers is about 50m (150 feet), so the dish is hidden in the garden. This also meets "technosaurus'" tip to be safe. I learned by asking neighbours, friends, reading specialized magazines, and doing. Wish you success! Hubi

Az-Al info
Username: drongo
"Here's a technical explanation It's something I signed up for, I think the link will work for anyone. For South read North, it has a hemispheric bias! Main point is, if you want a steerable as opposed to fixed, you need to tip the axis away from the polar axis to account for the geostationary arc being closer than infinity. If you go for a fixed dish you can ignore this.

Username: drongo
"For Az-Al read Az-El (Azimuth-Elevation) Sorry!

Tags: general