Need Help with DishPro and OTA Antenna Connections!!! (1 Viewer)

belsokar

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Oct 2, 2003
71
0
Well, I tried to do this on my own, but couldn't get it to work. This is my current setup:

Exterior Wall:
---------------
Dish 500 Dish, DishPro Twin running 2 cable runs to central closet
OTA UHF Antenna (not hooked up yet)

Central Closet:
-----------------
2 Cable runs from Satellite Dish coming into DP34 MultiSwitch.
4 Cable runs from DP34 Switch to 4 Receivers (811,510,501,301)

My problem of course is hooking up the OTA UHF Antenna into the current setup. The first issue with the OTA antenna is that I need to mount it outdoors by my satellite dish for a decent signal. I only have 2 cable runs leading to the Central Closet, so I need to piggyback one (or both) of the existing cable runs and split it out awith a diplexer when I hook up to the 811. I tried using a 2-Way Multi-Switch that provided the following 3 inputs (LHCP/TV ANT/RHCP) and the 2 following outputs (Sat Receiver 1 and 2) This setup did not work at all. And I'm not really sure where to go from here. My goal is to get the OTA Antenna Feed to just the 811 receiver, nothing else right now.

The second issue with the OTA setup is that I need a preamp to boost my signal to something that I can lock onto consistently. The preamp of course only has one input and one output, but since I need a power outlet, I can only use it indoors near my Central Closet. The problem (or at least what I perceive to be a problem) is that I would be boosting the satellite signal as well, which I know may not be a wise thing to do. So my question is, how do I work the preamp into this whole scenario, seeing that the only way I can power it is indoors near the Central Closet. I figure (and I may be wrong) that I can't use it by the actual receiver right before running the OTA feed into the 811. Is this a correct assumption?

i would appreciate any help on getting this to work...thanks!
 

drjake

SatelliteGuys Family
Oct 3, 2003
49
2
The multiswitch will not work. You need to get diplexers which combine OTA frequencies with satellite frequencies. Just make sure the diplexers you purchase are rated to 2200 mhz. You can also use an amplifier so long as the amplifier amplifies only the VHF and UHF bands. You need to make sure that it passes DC voltage though.
 

red hazard

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
Oct 13, 2003
557
7
St Louis Metro East (Illinois)
I don't see how you can use an OTA preamp without running another coax from the antenna to the closet. The preamp should be mounted close to the antenna hookup (on the mast). The part that is plugged into a 120V outlet inside is an approx 18V power supply box that powers the preamp through the coax and also separates the OTA signals from the 18 V DC. The output of this PS toward the receiver or TV now has the DC voltage removed and can be used with a splitter and if necessary diplexer(s). Remember there is DC voltage on the cables connected to the DP34 from the satellite receivers and inputting another source of DC is a sure recipe for disaster and even if nothing was destroyed, it wouldn't work with bucking voltages.

Most likely all your OTA digital signals are UHF. If so, your best bet is an UHF only antenna and a UHF only quality preamp such as the Channel Master model 7775. Hope this helps.
 

belsokar

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Oct 2, 2003
71
0
Thanks for your input...I have a followup for red hazard however...


So are you suggesting that I cannot (or should not) pass the OTA feed in any way through the DP34 Switch?

If So, is the following situation possible? Can I use a diplexer out by my satellite dish to get the OTA signal in on one of the cable runs coming from the satellite to the closet. In the closet, can I use a diplexer again to split the satellite signal and ota signal out again, allowing for the two satellite signals to go into the DP34, and the OTA signal to go through a preamp...then use a 3rd diplexer on the satellite output from the dp34 that goes to the 811 receiver and stack the OTA on that cable, and finally, use one last diplexer at the receiver side.

Not sure how practical this is...my main problems are that I cannot run a 3rd line into the house (I had someone look at the situation and say it was close to impossible without boring some new holes in the walls). I also do not have an external power supply in order to use a preamp (which is why I must use it my central cable closet)

Thanks again for all the help!
 

TheaterWizard

SatelliteGuys Family
Supporting Founder
Sep 7, 2003
113
0
belsokar said:
If So, is the following situation possible? Can I use a diplexer out by my satellite dish to get the OTA signal in on one of the cable runs coming from the satellite to the closet. In the closet, can I use a diplexer again to split the satellite signal and ota signal out again, allowing for the two satellite signals to go into the DP34, and the OTA signal to go through a preamp...then use a 3rd diplexer on the satellite output from the dp34 that goes to the 811 receiver and stack the OTA on that cable, and finally, use one last diplexer at the receiver side.

I have done same hookup with multiple diplexers before with success, however I have not tried with a preamp. I would try to put the OTA amp close to the receiver after you exit the diplexer, even though its not proper at least you wont add voltage to the receiver that way, and you might just get enough signal.
 

red hazard

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
Oct 13, 2003
557
7
St Louis Metro East (Illinois)
PREAMP/DIPLEXER/DP34 HOOKUP

The PREAMP should really be mounted on the mast within inches of the output of the antenna. A quality PREAMP is similar to a satellite dish LNA (in the LNB) as both are rated very low noise. The intent is the amplify the RF signal, both satellite or OTA, close to the source (the Antenna of Dish) to keep the signal to noise ratio as high as possible. A long coax run plus the diplexers are going to add noise plus weaken an already relatively weak signal which equals poor results. Will it still reasonably work with the preamp in the house? Hard to say. Depends on how strong the OTA signals from the antenna are.

If you are intent on proceeding you can hookup by taking taking the TV signal from the diplexer co-located with the DP34 and inputting it into the preamp. Then the amplified OTA signal (PREAMP OUT) is then applied to the power supply that is plugged into the wall outlet. The "TO TV" output from the power supply can be applied to a diplexer or a splitter. Remember, the PREAMP DC voltage is between the PREAMP output and the power supply signal input only. So that section of coax needs to be keep separate from all DP34 connections.

Hope this helps and sorry about the late reply.
 

belsokar

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Oct 2, 2003
71
0
Re: PREAMP/DIPLEXER/DP34 HOOKUP

red hazard said:
If you are intent on proceeding you can hookup by taking taking the TV signal from the diplexer co-located with the DP34 and inputting it into the preamp. Then the amplified OTA signal (PREAMP OUT) is then applied to the power supply that is plugged into the wall outlet. The "TO TV" output from the power supply can be applied to a diplexer or a splitter. Remember, the PREAMP DC voltage is between the PREAMP output and the power supply signal input only. So that section of coax needs to be keep separate from all DP34 connections.

Hope this helps and sorry about the late reply.

Thanks for the help! I'm wondering if I have some of my terminology confused...When I use the term preamp, I was referring to an amplifier that you basically have to plug into an AC wall outlet for power, and you have a coax input which takes the OTA signal from the antenna, and has a COAX output which goes to the TV (or diplexer in this case?) Again, sorry if I'm a bit confused about your use of the terms Power Supply and Preamp as two different items?
 

nicholassjenkins

SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 3, 2004
51
0
Dayton, OH
Reiterated request for OTA/DishPro assistance

I currently have a Dish 6000. Have had for 3 years, waiting for DVR technology. Given my Ranch Style home and 56" HD Projection TV at the center thereof, I could not rationalize a second STB. However, my wife has finally convinced me of this necessity. (P.S. Never take your wife to your friends' home, where his wife can display cool things like TV in the bedroom...)

So, now this is all coming to a head. My 921 is en route, and I have an 811 on order (for the bedroom).

While investigating my connectivity options, I discovered that Dish had replaced the legacy LNBF's in the meantime with DishPro, and had gotten smart enough to frequency shift + stack the even/odd transponder signals (really...wasn't this obvious when the engineer's originally designed the legacy LNBF's?). At any rate, reducing wire-count through my roof to my distribution point (yes, I prefer this inside, and I separately ground the dishes outside) seems like 'A Good Thing' (TM). So, DishPro seems like a swell solution, allowing me future expanson with the SW34 via cascading.

The remaining pain is "How do I arrange OTA to all of the STB's connected to the SW34('s)?"

I would prefer if anyone already knows of an online resource that explains how this works, and what my options are in detail, that they simply point me at such. However, I have searched here at satelliteguys.us, at avsforum.com, at google.com, at googlegroups.com, and at yahoo.com. So far, I have found very little, and it doesn't really discuss the topic in the same straightforward manner that LNB/switch functionality is described at switchinfo.info - which I (a novice) see as excellent.

That having been said, if I am correct and a concise FAQ for how/why to arrange active/passive OTA antenna, Diplexers, and Dishpro switches/STB's does not exist, please take the time to provide as much information as you can, and with your permission (and acknowledgement) I'll be happy to consolidate input and send to switchinfo.info as an additional page for display.

As to my particulars:
I currently have a Dish500 with a twin legacy LNB, and a Dish300 with a legacy single LNB, and finally a Terk42 Antenna. My current configuration is 1 leg of Dish500 twin legacy to SW21, Dish300 legacy to terk42 to SW21. SW21 to Dish 6000.

Oddly, I have seen conflicting information about the necessary placement of a diplexer and Dish Switches. Most of what I have found would seem to suggest that a powered antenna may interfere with normal DBS operations when connected via a diplexer, unless using a specific kind of diplexer that supports DC voltage switching between the DBS voltages and the OTA voltages, and then only when connected down-line of the Dish Switches.
However, most of the posts I have seen seem to indicate that a passive/non-powered antenna may be connected via a diplexer in almost any configuration with respect to a switch.
At any rate, in my current setup, I clearly am inserting the OTA signal onto the same cable as my 61.5 Satellite feed, upstream of the SW21. So, does the SW21 pass <900MHz signals through from both input legs to the single output leg simultaneously, while switching the >900MHz signals? If so, does this same functionality tend to exist in SW34 and other DP/DP+ switches?

I ask because in my new arrangement (textbook, really), I will (later this week) replace my Legacy LNB's with DishPro LNB's (already bought them used off Ebay -- here's hoping they work...), and connect both legs of my DishPro Twin LNB to input ports 1 & 2 of my SW34. I will connect my DP Single to my Terk TV42, to my input port 3 of my SW34. I will connect 921 "wall ports" 1 & 2 to receiver ports 1 & 2 of SW34. I will connect wall port 1 to a diplexer, and the Satellite out of the Diplexer to input port 1 of the 921. I will connect OTA out of the Diplexer to input port 2 of the 921. If required (*), I will connect the second input port of the 921 to 921 wall outlet 2 in the same way. I will connect receiver port 3 of my SW34 to my single "wall port" for my 811, and finally connect the 811 "wall port" to a diplexer which I split to the 2 811 inputs (satellite and OTA).

About "if required"... If you diplex an OTA signal onto the Satellite feed, MUST you strip it off before connecting the cable to the Satellite tuner, or will the additional voltage/current from the signal somehow screw up the satellite signal? I would assume not, and that I only have to diplex the signal at the STB if I need/want the OTA signal for use at the STB. But, I would rather not assume...

Finally, if I connect the DP Single to the Terk TV42 to the DP34, will the OTA signal split/forward across all 4 receiver(STB) outputs, or, must I somehow split/amplify the OTA signal separately from the DP34, and then diplex in between the DP34 and the STB's? And, to this question, I am interested in knowing both the "MUST I", as well as the "SHOULD I", and the "What should I expect if I don't?" If Must or Should really are the answers...any specific multi-port OTA splitters/amps you would recommend for the signal?

Thank you for sticking with me to the end here. One last note...while I really do want to solve my specific DP/OTA connection issues, I am a big believer in documenting and sharing for the benefit of all...so if you can provide a generic answer to the Switch/Diplexer questions, and then use my case as an example, that would be the best of all possible worlds.

-NICK
 

TheaterWizard

SatelliteGuys Family
Supporting Founder
Sep 7, 2003
113
0
belsokar said:
I'm a bit confused about your use of the terms Power Supply and Preamp as two different items?

A pre-amp uses a power injector(power supply) located inside the home, while the meat of the operation is located close to the antenna where power is usually not available. Used to attempt to boost the available signal of an OTA antenna.

A booster is a box with coax in and out, and an AC power plug on the same box. Used at the distribution point to make up for impedance loss due to splitters.

I believe you have a booster. :(

Red Hazzard has given you the best advise, get a pre-amp, and follow his posts to a tee and you may achieve your goal here. I dont see any other solution except to run that extra cable.
 

TheaterWizard

SatelliteGuys Family
Supporting Founder
Sep 7, 2003
113
0
nicholassjenkins said:
I would prefer if anyone already knows of an online resource that explains how this works, and what my options are in detail, that they simply point me at such.

Nick, try this link, I found it posted at this site just today, it may help you understand the techincal parts of a dishpro LNB. Not much info in diplexing, but that is not so hard as long as you dont introduce voltage into the LNB lines.

switch info

TheaterWizard
 

nicholassjenkins

SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 3, 2004
51
0
Dayton, OH
Thanks...I had found that site, and I believe it to be imminently helpful. Unfortunately they don't really discuss whether/how OTA is passed through various Dish switches, which is the core of the issue.

If I were a D* subscriber, I could select from a wide variety of multiswitches that would explicitly support a VHF/UHF port for splitting/passing the OTA content to all receiver ports. Unfortunately, the Dish switches (SW34/DP34 included) do not have this explicit port, and although I've had fortune with my legacy SW21, I am expecting my current setup to not work with SW34.

At any rate, I was hoping someone would provide a very technical analysis of how Dish switches and OTA interact.

Thanks for the help.
-NICK

TheaterWizard said:
Nick, try this link, I found it posted at this site just today, it may help you understand the techincal parts of a dishpro LNB. Not much info in diplexing, but that is not so hard as long as you dont introduce voltage into the LNB lines.

switch info

TheaterWizard
 

MikeD-C05

Pub Member / Supporter
Pub Member / Supporter
Nov 25, 2003
26,201
16,144
Nederland , Texas
The engineers in the picture quality do not advise using any diplexors or splicing the ota with the dish lnb. Like the clip on ota antennas (Terk 42 and 44) He even said there is some interference with cable and ota using diplexors. He advised a seperate line run for the antenna .
 

nicholassjenkins

SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 3, 2004
51
0
Dayton, OH
Still hoping for a detailed explanation

MikeD-C05 said:
The engineers in the picture quality do not advise using any diplexors or splicing the ota with the dish lnb. Like the clip on ota antennas (Terk 42 and 44) He even said there is some interference with cable and ota using diplexors. He advised a seperate line run for the antenna .

I appreciate the sentiment that running the OTA straight to the device may be 'best', but I just ran 2 brand new lines to my living room, and I'm not looking to run a 3rd. I currently am using a Diplexer (and crappy Terk 42 ;-), so I know this *can* work. And, in theory, it's all pretty simple ... some band-pass filtering or merging in all the right places.

I thank you for your assistance, but before giving up on this as if it is a bad idea, I'd like to know the technical limitations of current Dish switches and then make an informed choice. (Although, I am likely to replace the Terk at any moment.)

Thanks for your help, and if you see any good ->Dishpro Multi-Switch<- and OTA diagrams, please let me know.
-NICK
 

nicholassjenkins

SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 3, 2004
51
0
Dayton, OH
Correction to my own stupidity...

nicholassjenkins said:
I currently am using a Diplexer (and crappy Terk 42 ;-), so I know this *can* work.

While the above statement is true, it occurs to me (after finding 1 errant, but related article tonight...) that I currently have this strange interaction when tuning to OTA channels on my 6000... I oscillate between no signal and excellent signal, every time I press the Guide button, meaning:
State 1: Fine OTA signal.
Change: I press the guide button, then select some OTA channel.
State 2: No signal.
Change: I press the guide button, then select some OTA channel.
State 1: Fine OTA signal.
rinse and repeat...

I always thought this was a bug in my 6000 receiver, but I would now guess that each time I go to the "Guide", it is toggling between the 2 inputs on my SW21 switch. Thus, as my TV-42 is only connected to 1 Satellite input, every-other switch gets me dead-air. Duh...I actually feel ashamed...this should have been so obvious.

So, the big question is...later today when I swap out my 6000 with my 921, and I migrate from Dish Legacy to DishPro, will my new DP34 switch pass VHF/UHF signals, if they are being fed from my TV-42 in on both my 110 & 119 feeds?

Once I test, I will post and let everyone know. The good news would be that if that works, it would be less effort to buy a crappy TV-44 and connect 110, 119, and 61.5 through it into the DP34/SW34 than to run an OTA connection in, then run it through a pre-amp, a splitter, and a wild series of diplexers. However, I would bet that even if the signal will pass through the 34 that it will not be able to drive the maximum of 12 receivers that the 34's can cascade to feed. But, maybe it could drive the 3 tuners that I'm interested in ;-)

After I test, I'll post.
-NICK
 

nicholassjenkins

SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 3, 2004
51
0
Dayton, OH
DP34 *DOES NOT* Pass OTA frequencies, but diplexing does not hurt 921.

Yesterday, I connected my Terk TV42 to both my 110 and 119 DishPro lines, which diplexed the signal onto both cables running to my SW34/DP34 switch. Right behind my 912, I diplexed the signal off both tuner input lines, and connected 1 of the 2 available TV feeds into the OTA tuner. I then went into my 921 and performed a switch check, followed by searching for OTA Analog and Digital signals. It saw nothing - not when it searched, and not when I manually searched. :( However, the diplexing do not introduce noticable problems into the satellite feed -- good news. :D

This tells me that the SW34/DP34 is not even passing the OTA signal.

Coincidentally, I bought an indoor VHF/UHF amplified OTA antenna last night just to see if I could get any usable signals for my local digitals, and I achieved a 108 signal strength rating on channel 51, and was able to find ~15 Analog and Digital stations in the area. This suggests that I am certainly close enough to the towers for the signal to have successfully passed through the 34 if it was passing the frequencies.

As another note...while the TV42 was connected, my 110 sat strength was 101. With it disconnected, that strength is 123. 119 was unaffected. For people considering the Terk TV-42, please be aware of the impedence on sat signal.

So, to answer my own question, in a way...I will now be installing an indoor attic antenna, with amp to a splitter, through diplexers introduced between the SW34/DP34 and the set-top-boxes (921, 811).

Thanks, and I hope this helps someone else who is equally looking to understand what frequencies can or CANNOT be passed through the 34.
-NICK
 

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