Smallest dish for C band in upper midwest/Iowa (1 Viewer)

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sgarringer

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Apr 22, 2008
46
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So I think I may need to get involved in C band for the true FTA experience. Can anyone offer some suggestions on what the smallest dish I could get by with for decent C band performance would be? I have a small lot and not even sure that I have a good view so I don't want to get a lot of money invested. Today I have an 80cm dish with Ku LNB and have two places on my property, one can get about 80-100W and the other can get about 100-140W so I'd have to decide where this puppy is going to get mounted.

I already have several dishes (80cm and Dish network) plus a 40 foot tower that is considered the eyesore of the neighborhood, so the key here is discreet, and the key to that is SMALL.

Any help or advice would be appreciated.
 

FaT Air

HOA Free Zone
Feb 27, 2010
6,668
913
97W 48N
I'd say the general consensus for "decent C band performance" is a six foot. Will have trouble pulling in the DVB-S2 transponders, but will suffice for most DVB-S stuff. A 10 ft'r is only 2 feet extra on each, side and top and bottom. My 10 ft. BUD get's all the S2 stuff. So the choice is 6ft and none to minimal S2, 7.5/8 ft. and some. or a 10 ft and get it all. Take a drive around the country, Cheap to free ones can still be found, although they are getting more rare. Get 'em before they are gone. (Camo paint scheme and the neighbors may not even notice it) As for placement, mine is usually somewhere between 111°W and 72°W. and spends more time on 87°W for just program watching.
 

toucan-man

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jul 13, 2008
2,690
25
Wisconsin
If you mount it low to the ground, on a 4 1/2' pole a 10' dish disappears, sort of. At least when you're out driving around hunting for them, low mounted dishes are harder to spot. Mowing the grass and keeping the snow shoveled under the rim is something to consider with such a dish.

What are you using the 40' tower for?
 

sgarringer

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Apr 22, 2008
46
0
Thanks for the replies, you have given me some ballpark sizes, and sadly confirmed my suspicion 10 feet is probably too big.

The tower is for ham radio operation, but may come down next spring since due to the layout of my lot there is a point on my roof actually higher than the top of the tower, the one antenna up there would be moved.

I live in a major metro area so I get plenty OTA -- at least all the networks I see being discussed commonly (MeTV, Thecool, all the networks, etc) so I'll need to review what is available in DVB-S versus DVB-S2

My current FTA box doesn't support S2 so I'd never even considered that.
 

sergei

SatelliteGuys Pro
Aug 29, 2007
1,266
5
iowa
I'd agree that the 8 footer is the best compromise whether it be a solid or mesh dish.
 

Anole

SatelliteGuys Master
Sep 22, 2005
11,819
10
L.A., Calif.
You can squeeze more out of a really nice 8' dish by using a relatively inexpensive C-band-only orthomode feed, and two decent LNBs.
No Ku on the BUD, bud. :)

I would look for a solid or perforated 8'er, not a mesh (of course beggars can't be choosy)
As long as you are looking, an H-H motorized mount is well worth grabbing, if you see pretty much any dish on one.

I'm a ham, too. Just not very active the last few decades.
 

jaytay

SatelliteGuys Family
Apr 4, 2011
66
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Des Moines, IA
I have two 8' Birdview dishes - one solid, and one perforated. They both work great S2 signals using an AZBox Ultra receiver. And, I'm in central Iowa...
 

chaskuchar

SatelliteGuys Pro
Pub Member / Supporter
Apr 16, 2010
807
14
saint charles, missouri
i just put up a 6' dish in north east nebraska. i am getting a lot of s2 stations, a least i think i am. does montana pbs count as s2? still learning though. i finally think i got the puppy aligned. bloomberg on amc10 to nbc on amc6. i am using the dmx741 which receives both c and k-band. but still learning as i said. btw, i am on a solomend, same as openbox or sathawk. does a good job on the signals. charlie
 

Bongu

FTA addict - suffering withdrawal since moving
Oct 20, 2010
647
64
Fort Worth 'burbs
I have a 6' with a C-band ortho and I can receive the DVB-S stuff just fine, I have troubles with high FEC DCII signals. My Prof is gathering dust right now so I dont have an active DVB-S2 receiver.
 

ccvalentino

Well-Known SatelliteGuys Member
Mar 29, 2011
30
0
maryland
I have a Fortecstar 6', it works well and augments pay cable/satellite service nicely. I must admit, it does leave you desiring just a little more gain to fill in those S2 signals that are on the edge.

So, 6' will get you started, however if you have access to a 7.5 or 8' dish go for it. My 6' "disappears" into the side of my house. In fact, my old DirectTV slimline dish is more noticeable.

Chris
 

sergei

SatelliteGuys Pro
Aug 29, 2007
1,266
5
iowa
Thanks for the replies, you have given me some ballpark sizes, and sadly confirmed my suspicion 10 feet is probably too big.

The tower is for ham radio operation, but may come down next spring since due to the layout of my lot there is a point on my roof actually higher than the top of the tower, the one antenna up there would be moved.

I live in a major metro area so I get plenty OTA -- at least all the networks I see being discussed commonly (MeTV, Thecool, all the networks, etc) so I'll need to review what is available in DVB-S versus DVB-S2

My current FTA box doesn't support S2 so I'd never even considered that.

Checking one of your different postings you mentioned that your in area code 52404 which is Cedar rapids which is 25 miles from me, I live outside Vinton. If you need help either with installing or removing the dish or antenna let me know.
 

Phoxx

SatelliteGuys Family
Feb 1, 2010
72
0
The Land Of Corn!
There is a guy over by Martelle, IA (NR0X) who has an 8ft fiberglass you can probably get for little or nothing.
 
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sergei

SatelliteGuys Pro
Aug 29, 2007
1,266
5
iowa
Just A word of caution ....... If you decide on going with the "OLD fiberglass dish just make sure that you have on a long sleeve shirt and gloves as the fiberglass will come off.
 

LoTech

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 22, 2009
498
0
Whitesburg, Kentucky
Anyone have experience with a 6' offset solid aluminum dish. I have one that I haven't set up yet, and I thought I might use it to try for MeTV and This. I was wondering if it might possibly pull in the S2 RTV stuff too?
 

whatchel1

SatelliteGuys Master
Sep 30, 2006
9,099
48
Great High Plains
Anyone have experience with a 6' offset solid aluminum dish. I have one that I haven't set up yet, and I thought I might use it to try for MeTV and This. I was wondering if it might possibly pull in the S2 RTV stuff too?
It is most likely really only designed for Ku. So it will probably work for C but the beam width will not be 2 deg compatible. But it might work if peaked well.
 

Anole

SatelliteGuys Master
Sep 22, 2005
11,819
10
L.A., Calif.
For any dish you are thinking about, post some pictures and a description here to get good advice.
Someone will know about pretty much any dish you are likely to find, and will offer encouragement if it's good.

Some of the really old fiberglass dishes may have sagged with time.
But the commercial Channel Master / Andrew (8 foot, for instance) molded glass dishes are a thing of beauty.
One fellow had one that was sandblasted by the desert, and he restored it with several coats of paint and some light sanding.
Looks new now.
(just a few thing you learn reading the forum) - :up

As for the 6' offset, there are a number of fellows here on the forum with 6' Prodelin transmit-certified one-piece dishes (molded).
I wouldn't put all my C-band eggs in one basket to use it, but it'll get you started if ya have nothing better.
(my personal opinion is that it's too big for Ku, and too small for C-band, but I'll get plenty of argument if I say that out loud) - :cool:
 
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