New meters?

MikeinBaja

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Sep 9, 2008
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San Diego area (CA)
My trusty 15 year old Birdog meter has bitten the dust (not just battery), so I'm in the market for a new meter. Tried out the new Birdog ultra and was surprised it would not "lock" or provide a found indicator for the KU/KA FTA satellites (even after updating) - so that rules that one out.

What are folks using these days? Looking for something that will support my FTA side as well as both DN and DTV aiming that I ocassionally do for friends & neighbors.
 
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SkySurfer80

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Jun 14, 2019
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Tennessee
My trusty 15 year old Birdog meter has bitten the dust (not just battery), so I'm in the market for a new meter. Tried out the new Birdog ultra and was surprised it would not "lock" or provide a found indicator for the KU/KA FTA satellites (even after updating) - so that rules that one out.

What are folks using these days? Looking for something that will support my FTA side as well as both DN and DTV aiming that I ocassionally do for friends & neighbors.


I use a Satlink 6916 and it works like a charm.

It is very inexpensive and it actually lets you scan in and view the channels right there on the meter. It also shows DB and BER readouts which is very crucial for me and even has a readout for power to see how much loss you can have with long cable runs.


I love this meter even more than I did my old birdog. It is much lighter too! Even has a flashlight!

I recommend the Satlink 6916.
 

MikeinBaja

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Sep 9, 2008
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Thanks for the information. The Satlink is on my "list" that I'm winnowing through, but always great to get opinions from actual users. Assume it shows a "found" indicator on the FTA birds?

Was surprised the new Birdogs did away with that. Shows "found" just for DBS birds now.
 

MikeinBaja

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Sep 9, 2008
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Amazon reviews for the Satlink 6916 show it is not USA compatible - no USA birds listed, just Europe/England. Would assume there is an update available to download???
 

Titanium

AI6US
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May 23, 2013
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SkySurfer80, Even with a NA update, does the Satlink 6916 show lock on DishNetwork turbo or DirecTV transponders? I read that it does not lock on Dish Network 8psk turbo (most transponders) or DirecTV services and has issues with controlling their switches. I am certain that it is fine for FTA, though is doesn't lock higher modulations or CCM/VCM.

MikeinBaja If you do enough alignments to warrant, I recommend Applied Instruments meters. Check out the AI XR-3 meter with the XR-S2ACM-01 module. It is an awesome meter for FSS, DSS, DBS, in any shape or flavor! There is a new model that Scott reviewed, but I have no working knowledge of it.
 
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olliec420

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Jun 4, 2007
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Pensacola, FL
My trusty 15 year old Birdog meter has bitten the dust (not just battery), so I'm in the market for a new meter. Tried out the new Birdog ultra and was surprised it would not "lock" or provide a found indicator for the KU/KA FTA satellites (even after updating) - so that rules that one out.

What are folks using these days? Looking for something that will support my FTA side as well as both DN and DTV aiming that I ocassionally do for friends & neighbors.
I had a serial Birdog and finally got fed up with it and started shopping around. I ended up getting the V8 Finder. I figured for $49 if I hated it oh well. It works well. Interface is ok, the button response isn't the best but for less than $50, with the full capabilities of a receiver, I figured what they hey.
 

SkySurfer80

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jun 14, 2019
199
136
Tennessee
Thanks for the information. The Satlink is on my "list" that I'm winnowing through, but always great to get opinions from actual users. Assume it shows a "found" indicator on the FTA birds?

Was surprised the new Birdogs did away with that. Shows "found" just for DBS birds now.

It doesnt show found, but it has a locked in led light that turns on when hitting a sat plus it has a good beeping tone you can turn on or off and to me the blind scan is fast and lets you actually see what is on a bird.
 

SkySurfer80

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jun 14, 2019
199
136
Tennessee
Amazon reviews for the Satlink 6916 show it is not USA compatible - no USA birds listed, just Europe/England. Would assume there is an update available to download???

My satlink came with all US sats including dss birds on it from 30 west to 129.

I have heard the same but mine had them already on there so idk. I have been using mine to lock in my system and about to do a c band on a small dish experiment on a 90cm Channel Master.
 

MikeinBaja

Thread Starter
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Sep 9, 2008
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San Diego area (CA)
T: The AI looks like a nice rig. But at $470 for the meter and another $610 for the module I'm no longer as impressed.

O: I'm also coming off an old serial BD. Does the V8 provide a "found" indicator for the FTA and DBS birds?
 

olliec420

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jun 4, 2007
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Pensacola, FL
O: I'm also coming off an old serial BD. Does the V8 provide a "found" indicator for the FTA and DBS birds?
It doesnt really have a "found" indicator or a decent tone like the BD. Its basically like dragging a tv and a receiver out to the dish like I used to do but this is in a hand held form factor. I set my target TP and keep watching for the signal bars to light up.. Its not perfect but its totally worth it for $49 shipped which is what I got it for.
 

harshness

SatelliteGuys Master
May 5, 2007
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Salem, OR
MikeinBaja: How important is the ability to handle modern DIRECTV configurations to you?

Just being able to power an SWM LNB is a big step up in cost.
 

MikeinBaja

Thread Starter
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Sep 9, 2008
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San Diego area (CA)
MikeinBaja: How important is the ability to handle modern DIRECTV configurations to you?

Just being able to power an SWM LNB is a big step up in cost.
Not important at all. With the old BD I use an old pre-SWM LNB to aim, then swap out for the right LNB when finished. Hardware aiming/dithering etc is the same.
 

MikeinBaja

Thread Starter
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Sep 9, 2008
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San Diego area (CA)
So you like making a huge production out of it.

Probably faster to do it with a receiver meter and not have to fiddle with changing out the LNB.
Actually, no. Hauling a receiver and a TV to the roof and running power cords would be making a big production out of it. Hauling 1 extra LNB - not so much. Super easy to change LNBs.
 
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