Newbie questions about Dish Network 500 Dishes

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ejthomp

Member
Oct 8, 2008
5
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I'm new to this so please have patience. I've read the FAQ but it seems that I'm so new that even that is confusing.

Here is my situation:

A couple years ago I dropped Comcast cable and signed up for Dish Network. The installer came out and mounted two Dish Network 500s on the side of our house. One was for the general channels and one was specifically aimed so my wife could receive a Japanese channel (extra $25 per month for this one channel!).

After a few months with Dish network we weren't satisfied with the price, reception (outages), or fact that it wasn't flexible as far as adding TVs, computers, etc... We decided to drop it and pay the cancellation fee. I shipped back the receivers from inside the house but they left the dishes on the side of my house.

In place of cable and dish, I mounted a large antenna in my attic, plugged in a signal amplifier and routed that signal throughout the house. For more than a year now we've been satisfied receiving FREE OTA HDTV. I have HDTVs in the living room (HTPC), family room(Sony HDTV), garage, and bedroom(computer). No complaints there!

At this point in time I don't think I will get sucked in and want to mount a larger dish with motor but if I can spend just a hundred bucks or so to buy a receiver and add some decent channels to one TV in my house, I'll do it.

In my ideal world, maybe I could intercept a few major channels from the midwest and catch a Wisconsin Badger game once in a while. Or maybe my wife could find a channel that offered a little Japanese programing. What do you think?

My questions are:

If I purchase my own satellite receiver, can I just plug in the cable from the two dishes that remain on the side of my house and get something to display on my Sony HDTV in the family room?

If so, what can I hope for? The dishes are both Dish Network 500s. One has a DP plus LNB and the other a DP.
 

ejthomp

Member
Oct 8, 2008
5
0
Just to be clear:

I am not interested in anything illegal. I just want to know if the dishes on the side of my house can be used to receive any satellite FTA signals (non high-def) that I may be interested in.

If the dishes are useless, I'll take them down and consider mounting something that will work.
 

jayelem

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 5, 2006
1,305
0
Chicago suburbs.
At this point in time I don't think I will get sucked in and want to mount a larger dish with motor but if I can spend just a hundred bucks or so to buy a receiver and add some decent channels to one TV in my house, I'll do it.

In my ideal world, maybe I could intercept a few major channels from the midwest and catch a Wisconsin Badger game once in a while. Or maybe my wife could find a channel that offered a little Japanese programing. What do you think?

My questions are:

If I purchase my own satellite receiver, can I just plug in the cable from the two dishes that remain on the side of my house and get something to display on my Sony HDTV in the family room?

If so, what can I hope for? The dishes are both Dish Network 500s. One has a DP plus LNB and the other a DP.

By getting an FTA receiver for your existing setup all you will gain (Legally) is the NASA channel.

A bigger dish (90cm recommended)and linear LNB is neccesary for FTA , if you motorize it that's even better because you will gain more channels and have less limitations.

I believe the FAQ section covers this pretty well , I also believe that putting up a larger dish and motorizing it is worth every penny invested , if you read some of the threads in our forum you may even see a good deal discussed.
 

Hermitman

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jul 2, 2006
420
0
Limestone, Mi
Those dishes can be used for Pre-Paid Dish Network receivers. If you are interested in an ala carte or limited type programming from Dish Network, this might be something to look into. There are other threads covering this type of receiver and programming more in-depth. Good luck.
 

ejthomp

Member
Oct 8, 2008
5
0
Thanks for your help. I live in Vancouver, Washington so it is rare for my Wisconsin Badgers to be shown on major network stations around here.

Looks like I will be sending those dishes to the trash can.
 

gillham

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 14, 2008
599
0
Morgan Hill, CA
Thanks for your help. I live in Vancouver, Washington so it is rare for my Wisconsin Badgers to be shown on major network stations around here.

Looks like I will be sending those dishes to the trash can.
Don't just toss them out. Post on your local craigslist.org electronics section. You might get $20-$30 for each Dish 500. Or just list them as best offer. No use throwing them out. A small DBS dish is a great way to pull in NASA TV and just takes up a little room and one port on a DiSEqC. One dish per channel doesn't scale, but NASA TV is great. :) Also there are sometimes audio channels on the DBS birds.

If you can get $50 out of those dishes you can easily pickup a DirecTV 36" World Direct dish and do some real FTA on the cheap. Of course you'll need an FTA receiver, not DirecTV.

I've read posts saying the only use for an 18" DBS is to pirate signal, but really NASA TV is worthwhile and legal. Also for a new dish location I like using a small dish and a whistler signal meter for a simplistic site survey. You can get tone from 61.5° through 148° (at least out West) and all points in between. Real easy to point and get a pretty close idea of where your real FTA birds are. I like to mark the orbital slots on the pole by finding the noisy DBS birds. After that it is quite easy to find the birds in between the markings.

Sorry, went off on a tangent there, but seriously don't just throw those dishes out. :)
 

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
299
48
Mankato, MN
very true gillham...those dishes do work well for NASA and if aiming dishes and you havent aimed dishes before, it helps greatly to see where specific sats are :)
 

ejthomp

Member
Oct 8, 2008
5
0
Thanks guys.....

So now it boils down to what is really important....making the wife happy....

She would just flip out if I could arrange for her to receive a bunch of Japanese channels on "her" TV. She spends her time sitting at a kotatsu table watching OTA HDTV on a Sony KV-KBR960N. Nice TV, great picture, but no Japanese channels....yet...

What would it take to receive a bunch of the free Japanese channels I see on Lyngsat???

Let's suppose I had $500 to put into it.
 

ejthomp

Member
Oct 8, 2008
5
0
BTW Iceberg..... as mean as you look in that picture.... you're welcome to come on down this way for a Columbia River fishing trip. I'll gladly trade you room and board and a day fishing for some valuable satellite install info.
 

gillham

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 14, 2008
599
0
Morgan Hill, CA
What would it take to receive a bunch of the free Japanese channels I see on Lyngsat???

Let's suppose I had $500 to put into it.

The channels I have seen on the lists are all C-Band. Do you have an example channel? If you have room for a BUD and the Wife Acceptance Factor is high due to Japanese channels, you should be able to get a great setup for $500. :) Heck you can get a new 6' setup shipped from Sadoun for just over $500. If you rescue a BUD locally you can be setup for a lot less than that.

If you have a specific channel in mind and it is C-Band, I would imagine one of the BUD guys here could tell you more about it or check the channel itself out. Maybe even get you a sample of content to use for bait. ;)
 

olliec420

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jun 4, 2007
754
185
Pensacola, FL
I dont know if all dishes do (maybe someone could chime in and confirm) i have a 31" Skytech and it sits on the same size mount as a dish or direct dish does. You may save your self sometime in trying to plumb a mount on the side of the house cause the 2 you have are already plumb and should have cables near by. i say get you a bigger dish and throw it up on one of those mounts get the thing hooked up to your receiver and start by checking out 97W for jap chans, and 123 for american stuff :) just my 2 cents
 

rv1pop

SatelliteGuys Pro
I am about 100 miles east of you and between us there are many BUDs that some would have to be free. I saw one in Stevenson on Friday that looked like it was not in use. There are others around. Portland 's craigslist has been sparse lately, however, there have been times with several free dishes.
POP
 
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