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fuzzynuts

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Nov 8, 2004
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I did some searching around various places, including this forum, but could not find an answer. A friend of mine has a 7 1/2' dish and uses it for FTA reception. He had an extra VisionPlus PCI card laying around so he loaned it to me to play with.

I am an existing Dish subscriber with a Super Dish and a SW34. I have no interest in trying to pick up the actual Dish signals, but I was wanting to use my existing dish and switch to try and pick up the few FTA signals on the 119 and 121. I didn't see anything FTA on 110 according to Lyngsat.

Anyway, I was wondering if it was possible. From the research I have done, it appears that the SW34 is a standard DiSEqC switch that the card should be able to control. The only thing I thought I may run into problems with is I've read there are frequency differences on the Dish LNBs vs standard LNBs.

Basically what I am wanting to do right now is see if my PC is even capable of working decently with the card. If it does, then I plan to buy a PCI card on my own, as well as a 30-36" dish with a DiSEqC mover. From my understanding there are music, the DISH Promo channels, and a couple of international channels I should be able to use in order to test my configuration. If it is possible, does anyone know what settings I need to input into the setup screen?

Again, I have no desire to decode the actual DISH pay channels as I already have a subscription. I've always been interested in Satellite TV, and have only recently discovered there were any in-the-clear channels on the digital side. The last experience I had was with the analog C Band in-the-clear stations about 8 years ago before I moved.

Thanks so much for your help and please let me know if you need any more information from me to answer my questions.

Fuzzynuts
 

PSB

On vacation
Nov 5, 2003
1
4
Hello and welcome to the forum, check out the below link letting you know what to expect to receive with a small dish, the LNB L.O. setting for a small(DBS) dish should be set to.......

11250

http://www.satelliteguys.us/showthread.php?t=25452


The 121 satellite is KU band so you would need a KU LNBF and at least the 30" dish, good luck!

KU LNBF L.O. 10750
 

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
299
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Mankato, MN
The only issue with the switch that you have is it combines all 3 signals into 1, so if you have it scan the Dish Network stuff, it is going to be screwed up because both 119 & 110 use the same frequencies, so when you scan it doesnt know which one to go to (119 or 110).
 

fuzzynuts

New Member
Nov 8, 2004
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You guys are a huge help! I finally got signal to the card last night thanks to the suggestions by PSB. I was having problems, but one of my diplexers outside aparently went bad. (I used to use two recievers but went to one when I got my PVR, so I already had a second cable run from the switch.) I took it out of the chain since I am not using it any more anyway and I was able to actually see some channels when I did a scan.

Here is what my 508 said when I did a switch check:

Input 1: 121 Feed
Input 2: 110 Dual
Input 3: 119 Feed

I am using MyTheatre with the VisionPlus card. Based on the info my 508 gave me, I went into the LNB setup and selected Echostar 7. Set the LOF1 and LOF2 to 11250000, and set the DiSEqC to LNB3 Undedicated. I did the same for Echostar 5/8, but set the DiSEqC to LNB2 undedicated. When I scanned the transponders, I was only able to see horizontal transponders. All of the Vertical transponders were no signal, and a few of the horizontal as well. I thought maybe it was because the LNBs were dedicated, but I got no signals at all if I went to those settings. I didn't even attempt to pick up the 121 yet, even though since there is an LNB for it attached to my dish, I assume I should be able to get something off of it.

After I got the channels scanned, I went back out to the main screen and expanded the two satellites that I set up. The only video channel I was able to get was ELECT which was some kind of a multi-channel video feed, which was currently playing the sound from the MTV feed it was showing. Part of the time it was very choppy, others it was perfect. I was able to pick up one more radio audio channel, the name escapes me at the moment. There were several other channels marked with a green dot but I didn't seem to get anything from them. Shouldn't I be able to watch/hear anything with the green dot? Most of the channels were red, obviously, and I know I won't be able to do anything with them. I am using a pretty crummy computer at the moment (spare parts I had) so I am guessing the laggyness and chop I am getting is due at least in part to needing more horsepower.

Now regarding the switch issue that Iceburg mentioned, would this be the cause of only getting half the transponders? Your post was not on here at the time I was testing so I didn't think of that last night. Could I replace the SW34 with a 4 to x DiSEqC switch and have my dish reciever still work properly? I may need a new switch for FTA if I decide not to get a dish mover anyway, and would be willing to get one for testing since they aren't expensive.

My friend has a 4 to 1 DiSEqC switch I might be able to borrow for a couple of days. If you guys think it might work, I'll try to run the 3 cables from the cascade ports of the SW34 to the inputs on that 4 to 1 and see if I have better luck. If I understand correctly, the cascade outputs pass the direct signal from each LNB directly, so that you can add another switch and have additional recievers. Doing it this way would (in theory) allow me to use a standard DiSEqC switch for my FTA testing, but not touch my working subscription at all.

Regardless of whether or not I end up getting my existing config working, I am having a lot of fun and I have learned a TON about how the digital satellite realm works. Hopefully I'll get this working well enough to convince my wife that I need to go ahead and get the correct stuff. :D

Thanks again for the help guys!

Fuzzynuts

*** Edit***
I checked with my friend and he is currently using that extra switch he had so I will not be able to use it at the moment. Along the same lines of using the cascade ports to feed the DiSEqC switch, will it work to feed the reciever directly from one of the cascade ports to get that LNB only?
 
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