HTS Tracker IV questions

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Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
299
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Mankato, MN
Where I live the town next to us (Bloomington, MN...home of Mall of America) has a junk cleanup during April/May. Depending on what part of town you live in, one week you can put ANYTHING out on Friday and the garbage men come Saturday and take it. Well a lot of us go "junking" to find anything good.

Found me the usual....broken Dish 500's, parts from DIsh 500's, Phase III's, DirecTV dishes but this week was different....

Got me a jem while junking....a HTS Tracker IV with VCII board in it. Looks almost brand new :)

Now I don't know if there is any subscription on it. (highly doubt it). The owner didnt have a C-Band dish in the back yard (looks like he recently went pizza)

Hooked it up and master reset it. Stored in G4 and now I'm set. But I have some questions.

-The VCII buttons on the remote I assume only work if I am on a VCII channel?
-There is a signal strength screen (right now it shows 78 on the Church Channel and 73 on the feed). If I rip the VCII board out, that will disappear, right?
-Right now its really cloudy....With a 6' dish do you think 80 is the best it will show?
-Anybody have a manual (or something that can help me make some of the changes. I know how to fine tune and audio tune but want to see if there is more)

It has a UHF remote and one came with it, but it doesn't work. But there are dip switches in it...where the heck would I find the dip switches on the receiver to match them up?

Anything else I should know about it?
 

AntAltMike

SatelliteGuys Pro
Aug 28, 2005
3,444
0
The remote is probably the universal Expert remote or X-pert remote. They used to sell on eBay for about $100. If they are still there, you could contact a winning bidder and beg him for a copy of the dip switch settings to match your receiver.

You might need a password to access the setup menu. Whenever I need a password, I just Google some combination of satellite and password and c-band and there are a dozen sites that list all the universal passwords. HTS might use their home office's zip code or something clever like that.

I don't think videociphers ever needed to have been previously activated to allow the viewing of "open key" channels. I think BET will be viewable, but there is a lithium battery that has a useful life of ten years that must be replaced before it expires. There are actually two model batteries used. One might be 3 volts and the other 3.6. You need to solder in the new battery before cutting out the old one.

Instructions for changing the battery are widely available on the internet and can also be found with the obvious "Googling".
 

Lynskyn

SatelliteGuys Pro
Dec 12, 2005
375
8
Houston, Texas
Expert remote dip switch setting for Tracker IV - #4 ON, the rest off.
The signal strength should remain if you remove the VC2 board.
I used to always disable "Autotune" on Houston Tracker boxes because the skew rarely worked right with Autotune.
 

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
299
48
Mankato, MN
AntAltMike said:
You might need a password to access the setup menu. Whenever I need a password, I just Google some combination of satellite and password and c-band and there are a dozen sites that list all the universal passwords. HTS might use their home office's zip code or something clever like that.
googled it and found it the other day
7907878 :)
Reset it and programed in G4 and got that working just fine

I don't think videociphers ever needed to have been previously activated to allow the viewing of "open key" channels. I think BET will be viewable, but there is a lithium battery that has a useful life of ten years that must be replaced before it expires. There are actually two model batteries used. One might be 3 volts and the other 3.6. You need to solder in the new battery before cutting out the old one.
unit says "1990" when you turn it on so we're past the 10 years :) Havent opened up the VCII slot yet to see how old the module is.
 

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
299
48
Mankato, MN
Lynskyn said:
Expert remote dip switch setting for Tracker IV - #4 ON, the rest off.
OK...so that part is right....maybe the remote is dead. the IR remote works fine

The signal strength should remain if you remove the VC2 board.
good to know

I used to always disable "Autotune" on Houston Tracker boxes because the skew rarely worked right with Autotune.
my LNB is the DMSI C-band LNBF so I have to physically skew it (this LNB is more deasigned for FTA setups where the reciever controls skew)
 

Shawn95GT

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Supporting Founder
Feb 9, 2005
2,278
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Phoenix, AZ
Iceberg said:
-The VCII buttons on the remote I assume only work if I am on a VCII channel?
Correct, and it brings up a ghetto sub-menu for VC options. Pretty much same goes on 4DTV.
Iceberg said:
-There is a signal strength screen (right now it shows 78 on the Church Channel and 73 on the feed). If I rip the VCII board out, that will disappear, right?
On my HTS System 70 there were two meters - one in the VC area and one on the tuning menu. I didn't try it sans VC module though.
Iceberg said:
-Right now its really cloudy....With a 6' dish do you think 80 is the best it will show?
Sounds about right to me. I found that there were a couple settings (TI filter and something else) that would significantly clean up the picture.

I ended up turning the autotune stuff off too. As I recall, 'Auto Tune' would peak you positioner on the satellite and 'Auto Skew' would try to do the same for skew. I turned it off because it took longer to change sats when it would purposely blow past the position just to come back and re-peak it.

It doesn't help you any, but my System 70 also had a feature called 'Master Track'. It was kind of USALS for c-band :cool: .
 

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
299
48
Mankato, MN
Thanks guys!

I'll take some pictures and screen shots for ya.

Shawn..when I hit "fine tune" I can cycle through the frequency and audio. Thats where the number shows up.
 

Shawn95GT

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Supporting Founder
Feb 9, 2005
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Phoenix, AZ
Iceberg said:
Shawn..when I hit "fine tune" I can cycle through the frequency and audio. Thats where the number shows up.
Sounds exactly like my System 70 was. That menu lets you tune eveything (skew / position / frequency / you name it). There is a signal meter in the VC menu too. It may be the same as what you are getting in the other menu though.

It'll be handy to locate a manual because the satellite list on the HTS boxes is of course a bit dated and sats have moved. I did a HTS --> 4DTV --> real name chart a while back. If I still have it I'll attach it (I'll have to check @home).

If I hadn't gave away my HTS boxes I'd have two boxes and a manual to offer up :).
 

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
299
48
Mankato, MN
yeah alot of them were outdated...G4 is still there :)

I had to do a master reset because it says "Anik A2" and when I tried to move to G4 satellite it would say "motor not moving" and stay on Anik. I logged in G4 and its working now :)
 

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
299
48
Mankato, MN
Here are some photos :)

3 of the unit
when you turn the unit on (yes that says 1990) :)
the screen when you cycle through the fine tune button

(the reason it says both limits is I only stored G4 and polarity is irrelvant as the DVB box controls it)
 

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MikeI

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 25, 2004
3,295
278
That looks like my HTS 70 menus that I see. I have my HTS 70 manual if you want me to look up something that might match your receiver. My receiver reads Houston Tracker 70 Copyright 1992 - 2006. Excellence in Design. Leader in Home Satellite TV. It updates every year in the copyright area. My receiver was $700 brand new back in '92. Bought it at some store in Westminster on Beach Blvd. My original remote busted in '96, but I got a replacement last December on EBay for $20 from a guy in Memphis.
 

MikeI

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 25, 2004
3,295
278
dfergie said:
actually right here in the C-Band FAQ's ;) last time I looked I got Cartoon Network and a couple of others...

FOX news channel is one on G11 that I saw the other day. :)
 

MikeI

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 25, 2004
3,295
278
AntAltMike said:
The remote is probably the universal Expert remote or X-pert remote. They used to sell on eBay for about $100. If they are still there, you could contact a winning bidder and beg him for a copy of the dip switch settings to match your receiver.

You might need a password to access the setup menu. Whenever I need a password, I just Google some combination of satellite and password and c-band and there are a dozen sites that list all the universal passwords. HTS might use their home office's zip code or something clever like that.

I don't think videociphers ever needed to have been previously activated to allow the viewing of "open key" channels. I think BET will be viewable, but there is a lithium battery that has a useful life of ten years that must be replaced before it expires. There are actually two model batteries used. One might be 3 volts and the other 3.6. You need to solder in the new battery before cutting out the old one.

Instructions for changing the battery are widely available on the internet and can also be found with the obvious "Googling".

Once you find the password on the internet to reset then hit the menu button and then 6-3 on the remote. This will allow you to change the password, delete satellites and setup your lnb settings. If you choose single lnbf if you have that option under system setup then the lnbf can go straight to the receiver and control horizontal and vertical without moving the lnbf.
 
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