Why would looking at signal strength "fix" reception (no check switch run)? (1 Viewer)

GTAE86

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Feb 15, 2008
53
0
Was trying to look at something on Encore channels on Friday night - all of the SD were unwatchable but the HD versions were great (different satellites?).

Went to the setup screen to check the satellite signals - 119 was up around 75, 110 was fluctuating between 50 and 60, and 129 was going from 7 to 15.

According to those results, I should be able to watch anything but my locals (129).

Decided to check the locals. Of course, when I exited the setup screen, I was still tuned to one of the bad Encore channels I had been checking - it was fine. I checked the rest, all good. Checked my satellite locals - all good.

I rechecked the signal strengths, and got the same results as before.

What gives?
 

highdefjeff

SatelliteGuys Pro
Oct 20, 2006
615
1
St. Louis
Because you gave the receiver time to re-acquire the signal and re-fill the buffer to start over. And this time, the data that was corrupted causing the problems initially (from burst errors or fluctuating signal) wasn't present when the signal was re-acquired.
 

GTAE86

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Feb 15, 2008
53
0
So looking at the signal strength display caused some kind of reacquisition?
 

Dishpointer

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
Jan 10, 2005
776
0
Kansas
My brand new 722k has been doing this since I got it last week. The voices would get muffled so I check signal strength than cancel back and it will be fine for an hour or so. This is really getting anoying as my other receiver doesn't have this problem. What's the fix?
 

whatchel1

SatelliteGuys Master
Sep 30, 2006
9,099
48
Great High Plains
LIL?

Was trying to look at something on Encore channels on Friday night - all of the SD were unwatchable but the HD versions were great (different satellites?).

Went to the setup screen to check the satellite signals - 119 was up around 75, 110 was fluctuating between 50 and 60, and 129 was going from 7 to 15.

According to those results, I should be able to watch anything but my locals (129).

Decided to check the locals. Of course, when I exited the setup screen, I was still tuned to one of the bad Encore channels I had been checking - it was fine. I checked the rest, all good. Checked my satellite locals - all good.

I rechecked the signal strengths, and got the same results as before.

What gives?
So are you saying the tps that you get LIL on were displaying 7 to 15?
 

GTAE86

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Feb 15, 2008
53
0
No those numbers are signal strength on whatever transponder was selected.

I did not change the transponders to see if anything changed - in my experience, that generally has little to no effect.

Basically, it looked like the signal strengths on 110 and 119 were adequate, so I should not have been seeing distortion on premium channels. However, the signal strength on 129 was marginal (not uncommon), so I should not have been able to view satellite locals - 129 was losing lock the signal was so low. However, the satellite locals were working fine, and I was having trouble on Encore channels. Also, my wife and I started to watch a movie we had recorded from STARZ - not sure what night - and it was unwatchable.

I have always had terrible signal strength on 129 due to LOS issues. I have never had problems with 119 or 110 until now.

If Dish would get busy and just put my HD locals on EA, then I could transition to that constellation entirely. I am not holding my breath - they have been promising it for over a year now.... I would be more than happy to go to EA and just watch Richmond, VA locals.
 

GTAE86

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Feb 15, 2008
53
0
Yeah...

...which is why those of us who could easily get the signal from an adjacent market that is already on EA should be allowed to do so.
 

highdefjeff

SatelliteGuys Pro
Oct 20, 2006
615
1
St. Louis
So looking at the signal strength display caused some kind of reacquisition?

So looking at the signal strength display caused some kind of reacquisition?

Yes. Before we see what is playing on the screen, the received signal is processed and sent to the "buffer" where it stores up enough to give you an uninterrupted playout of the program. In the presence of compromised signal, sometimes the buffer isn't big enough, or doesn't have enough delay to store up enough data for a high quality output. But television requires "real-time" viewing so the show must go on. In the worst case scenario, your receiver will "lock up" requiring a re-boot. Sometimes you will lose signal lock, but most of the time the receiver will output the best it can depending on the amount and/or type of data corrupted.

As you went to check the screen, your receiver stopped displaying the picture. In a sense, this is sort of like a mini-reboot. The program you were watching didn't stop and the signal didn't either, but the decoding process stopped. When you went back to the program the receiver started "fresh", processing the signal as it was being received.

It is like with computers that use wireless signal. When you are getting low signal and you are downloading video, there are various things that may happen.

Sometimes your whole computer will "lock up" and fail to respond to anything. So you reboot. The same with digital receivers.

Sometimes, a video will come in slow and stop very frequently to buffer, or it will get "stuck" and not continue, or the quality will be poor. Sometimes when this happens, refreshing the page and starting again will get you far better results on the very same video in the same low signal environment. With digital receivers you get all of the above, or you get loss of signal message because the receiver is not allowed to just stop and wait to buffer longer. You gave the system a fresh start by viewing the signal screen.

Signal quality and strength don't tell you specifically what is lacking in the incoming signal. It only tells you that it IS lacking. Exactly which bits of data that are corrupted determines how it manifests in your system. Sometimes it is overall quality, sometimes a little pixelation, sometimes edge artifacts, sometimes audio sync, etc.

In regards to your signal readings, I would only expect trouble free performance from your 119 satellite. The 110 is only marginal and the 129 is too low.

What we need to remember is that signal is constantly changing due to burst errors, environmental influences and other factors. These factors are not generally reported via the signal meter, though we can sometimes see variation when checking the meter. The sum total of the signal power versus the noise power is signal quality.
 

JohnL

Pub Member / Supporter
Sep 23, 2003
1,411
92
Spencerport, NY
If you have a OTA Antenna source plugged into your receiver and One Tuner is tuned to a Local OTA Source and the signal drops out you will lose the lock on your satellite signal. Once you pull up the Satellite meter you will get your satellite lock back.

John
 

whatchel1

SatelliteGuys Master
Sep 30, 2006
9,099
48
Great High Plains
fine fine bad

Looking back thru the thread looks like you need dish repeaked. Signal for 110 is fine, 119 is fine, & 129 is bad. In fact you could use loosing some signal on 110,& 119 if it takes it to get more signal on 129. highdefjeff is the guy on this forum that will almost always tell you that SS is too low. In this case 129 is way too low. BTW I've seen a lock on a channel & it working as low as 7 but won't work consistently. So get some more signal on 129. Let us know how things are going after some peaking.
 

highdefjeff

SatelliteGuys Pro
Oct 20, 2006
615
1
St. Louis
Looking back thru the thread looks like you need dish repeaked. Signal for 110 is fine, 119 is fine, & 129 is bad. In fact you could use loosing some signal on 110,& 119 if it takes it to get more signal on 129. highdefjeff is the guy on this forum that will almost always tell you that SS is too low. In this case 129 is way too low. BTW I've seen a lock on a channel & it working as low as 7 but won't work consistently. So get some more signal on 129. Let us know how things are going after some peaking.

Thanks whatchel1. I gave the explanation and left out the solution.
 

GTAE86

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Feb 15, 2008
53
0
I agree a better 129 would be nice...

...but that is as good as it will get where I live. There are a couple of trees I could cut that might make it better (it is unwatchable in the leaf season). The only reason I keep the satellite locals is so I will have a channel guide for OTA. I am thinking of getting a 722k just so I will have a second OTA receiver into the DVR.

I would rather peak for 110 and 119 and ditch 129 completely, but sometimes locals are viewable from the satellite when OTA is bad.

Again, just let me get Richmond locals (most of the counties around me are in their beam, from what I can tell), and I could switch to EA completely.

I mean, if I am unable to watch crappy local commercials because of bad reception, then networks could at least get something back by letting me see the national commercials and locals from an adjacent market. I mean, we all really just watch for the commercials, right?
 

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