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Considering Satellite: Some Questions

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June 30, 2005 11:07:11 AM

Archived from groups: alt.satellite.tv (More info?)

Sorry for the rather long post. I'm once again outraged at the high cost of
basic cable and am seriously considering a move to satellite. I have some
questions that I haven't been able to clear up by consulting satellite
providers' web sites or speaking to their salepeople. Thanks for any
advice/information you can provide, and I apologize for asking questions
which may have been answered in other threads. My questions (for now) are:

1. Wiring: I've read that existing in-house cable wiring may not, under
certain circumstances, be sufficient to operate the satellite dish and that
the dish installer might need to run a new direct line from the dish to the
rooms that will be served. In my home the cable enters underground in the
basement and is split numerous times in the basement for distribution to
almost every room in the house. Is it likely that a dish installer would
need to run new direct lines under these circumstances?

2. Recording with VCRs: The dish companies push DVR receivers, which cause
me to be suspicious about whether I could use my existing analogue VHS
equipment to record digital programming from the dish. Can conventional VHS
recorders be used? Can you watch one channel while recording another?

3. Outages/Repair: Neither the web sites nor salepeople are very clear about
the costs of sending somebody out to repoint the dish or otherwise perform
repairs. Salepeople generally tell me that wind and other weather will not
cause the dish to lose contact with the satellite and that the dish would
not need to be "repointed" (the only issue they commonly mention is heavy
snow). How often does service go out? Is there ever a need to repoint the
dish, especially if it is exposed to 30-40 mph or higher winds?

4. Phone Lines: I've read that a least some of the satellite receiver units
must be plugged into the phone line, ostensibly to permit the receiver to
confirm that it is serving the house it was installed in. How often does the
receiver use the phone line? What impact might there be if, for example, the
receiver decides to use the phone line when I am using it for Internet
access (or actually talking on the phone with someone)? Has anyone
considered whether privacy issues are raised where a big corporation's black
box has unfettered access to your telephone line?

5. Dual tuner box: At least one dish company is now offering a receiver with
dual tuners that can serve up the dish in two rooms independently (different
channels watched in each). It appears that the second room served by this
receiver would receive a mono audio signal only. Are there any other
differences/problems I should be aware of with these dual tuner boxes?

6. Use 3d party box: I think I've seen satellite receivers for sale in major
retail stores. Can I avoid the monthly lease cost for extra receivers by
buying one outright from a retailer and plugging it into an installation?

Thanks again for any advice.


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More about : satellite questions

Anonymous
June 30, 2005 5:32:18 PM

Archived from groups: alt.satellite.tv (More info?)

AndyG wrote:

> Sorry for the rather long post. I'm once again outraged at the high cost of
> basic cable and am seriously considering a move to satellite. I have some
> questions that I haven't been able to clear up by consulting satellite
> providers' web sites or speaking to their salepeople. Thanks for any
> advice/information you can provide, and I apologize for asking questions
> which may have been answered in other threads. My questions (for now) are:
>
> 1. Wiring: I've read that existing in-house cable wiring may not, under
> certain circumstances, be sufficient to operate the satellite dish and that
> the dish installer might need to run a new direct line from the dish to the
> rooms that will be served. In my home the cable enters underground in the
> basement and is split numerous times in the basement for distribution to
> almost every room in the house. Is it likely that a dish installer would
> need to run new direct lines under these circumstances?

Yes.
But only because of those those splitters. Satellite signals won't
pass through them.


>
> 2. Recording with VCRs: The dish companies push DVR receivers, which cause
> me to be suspicious about whether I could use my existing analogue VHS
> equipment to record digital programming from the dish. Can conventional VHS
> recorders be used?

Yes.

Can you watch one channel while recording another?

No.

>
> 3. Outages/Repair: Neither the web sites nor salepeople are very clear about
> the costs of sending somebody out to repoint the dish or otherwise perform
> repairs. Salepeople generally tell me that wind and other weather will not
> cause the dish to lose contact with the satellite and that the dish would
> not need to be "repointed" (the only issue they commonly mention is heavy
> snow). How often does service go out? Is there ever a need to repoint the
> dish, especially if it is exposed to 30-40 mph or higher winds?

If the dish is mounted properly, and what it is mounted to is stable
wind won't effect it.
However, very heavy rain and snow can cause blockage. Snow, even more
so, if it accumulates on the dish.
Any service call that is not the fault of the installer or not covered
by the warranty is typical at 70 to 90 per visit/hour.


>
> 4. Phone Lines: I've read that a least some of the satellite receiver units
> must be plugged into the phone line, ostensibly to permit the receiver to
> confirm that it is serving the house it was installed in. How often does the
> receiver use the phone line? What impact might there be if, for example, the
> receiver decides to use the phone line when I am using it for Internet
> access (or actually talking on the phone with someone)?

A phone will only need to be installed if you are wanting or using Pay
per view stuff.
Also, it will not "dial up" if the phone is otherwise in use.


> Has anyone
> considered whether privacy issues are raised where a big corporation's black
> box has unfettered access to your telephone line?
>
> 5. Dual tuner box: At least one dish company is now offering a receiver with
> dual tuners that can serve up the dish in two rooms independently (different
> channels watched in each). It appears that the second room served by this
> receiver would receive a mono audio signal only. Are there any other
> differences/problems I should be aware of with these dual tuner boxes?

I believe those are instead designed so that you CAN watch one program
while recording another on it's own hard drive. (see your guestion # 2)


>
> 6. Use 3d party box: I think I've seen satellite receivers for sale in major
> retail stores. Can I avoid the monthly lease cost for extra receivers by
> buying one outright from a retailer and plugging it into an installation?

Not really.
After all, while you would own the receiver, you still have to pay the
activation fee and monthly charges, and hook it up yourself.
Therefor you would be paying just as much, if not more by not having
them install them all at once.
Anonymous
June 30, 2005 7:46:01 PM

Archived from groups: alt.satellite.tv (More info?)

Norwood Fisher wrote:

> AndyG wrote:
>> Is it
>> likely that a dish installer would need to run new direct lines under
>> these circumstances?
>
>
> Yes.
> But only because of those those splitters. Satellite signals won't pass
> through them.

Oh! And I had best add that if the house currently has an inferior grade
of cable, then it IS in your best interests to have them use what is
required.. RG6.

snip the rest.
Related resources
Anonymous
June 30, 2005 7:48:30 PM

Archived from groups: alt.satellite.tv (More info?)

Norwood Fisher wrote:

> AndyG wrote:

> Can you watch one channel while recording another?
>
> No.

My mistake.
Make that..."Possibly". It just depends on the receiver.
One with a dual tuner/receiver can of course do that.
Anonymous
June 30, 2005 8:40:21 PM

Archived from groups: alt.satellite.tv (More info?)

On Thu, 30 Jun 2005 07:07:11 -0400, "AndyG" <andyg@snip.net> wrote:

>Sorry for the rather long post. I'm once again outraged at the high cost of
>basic cable and am seriously considering a move to satellite. I have some
>questions that I haven't been able to clear up by consulting satellite
>providers' web sites or speaking to their salepeople. Thanks for any
>advice/information you can provide, and I apologize for asking questions
>which may have been answered in other threads. My questions (for now) are:
>
>1. Wiring: I've read that existing in-house cable wiring may not, under
>certain circumstances, be sufficient to operate the satellite dish and that
>the dish installer might need to run a new direct line from the dish to the
>rooms that will be served. In my home the cable enters underground in the
>basement and is split numerous times in the basement for distribution to
>almost every room in the house. Is it likely that a dish installer would
>need to run new direct lines under these circumstances?

You will need to run cable to each reciever used, but could use the
existing cable from the reciever to your tvs. You could put a dual
tuner receiver(s) in the basement, then send out the separate analog
signals to the tv(s) using your existing cabling. You would need RF
remotes for this to be able to control the reciever(s). Dish would
normally provide one RF and one IR remote, you can switch to 2 RF for
20 bucs, I think
>
>2. Recording with VCRs: The dish companies push DVR receivers, which cause
>me to be suspicious about whether I could use my existing analogue VHS
>equipment to record digital programming from the dish. Can conventional VHS
>recorders be used? Can you watch one channel while recording another?

you can use a VCR or DVD recorder, they record the analog from the
recievers. If you use a dual tuner reciever from the sat co. you can
watch one, record one, watch 2, etc
>
>3. Outages/Repair: Neither the web sites nor salepeople are very clear about
>the costs of sending somebody out to repoint the dish or otherwise perform
>repairs. Salepeople generally tell me that wind and other weather will not
>cause the dish to lose contact with the satellite and that the dish would
>not need to be "repointed" (the only issue they commonly mention is heavy
>snow). How often does service go out? Is there ever a need to repoint the
>dish, especially if it is exposed to 30-40 mph or higher winds?

never had a dish move due to wind, if you had a strong enough wind to
move the dish, that would be the least of your worries.....have been
through 70-80 mph winds a couple times over years
>
>4. Phone Lines: I've read that a least some of the satellite receiver units
>must be plugged into the phone line, ostensibly to permit the receiver to
>confirm that it is serving the house it was installed in. How often does the
>receiver use the phone line? What impact might there be if, for example, the
>receiver decides to use the phone line when I am using it for Internet
>access (or actually talking on the phone with someone)? Has anyone
>considered whether privacy issues are raised where a big corporation's black
>box has unfettered access to your telephone line?

the phone line is so pay per views can be registered with them, think
it will work without a phone connection......at least DirecTV did a
couple years ago......it will send the info to them at night and when
you aren't on the phone, will try again later....get dsl anyway, you
need the speed
>
>5. Dual tuner box: At least one dish company is now offering a receiver with
>dual tuners that can serve up the dish in two rooms independently (different
>channels watched in each). It appears that the second room served by this
>receiver would receive a mono audio signal only. Are there any other
>differences/problems I should be aware of with these dual tuner boxes?

I have Dish, I think I get stereo everywhere, at least I haven't
noticed anything...I really like the dual tuner boxes and dvr
>
>6. Use 3d party box: I think I've seen satellite receivers for sale in major
>retail stores. Can I avoid the monthly lease cost for extra receivers by
>buying one outright from a retailer and plugging it into an installation?

Not sure you would get any price break for buying your box, but I
think when you buy from a retailer depending on the service, etc you
get a rebate for all/part of the cost of the box
>
>Thanks again for any advice.
>
>
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>
>
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Anonymous
July 1, 2005 1:29:07 AM

Archived from groups: alt.satellite.tv (More info?)

On Thu, 30 Jun 2005 07:07:11 -0400, "AndyG" <andyg@snip.net> wrote:

>Sorry for the rather long post. I'm once again outraged at the high cost of
>basic cable and am seriously considering a move to satellite. I have some
>questions that I haven't been able to clear up by consulting satellite
>providers' web sites or speaking to their salepeople. Thanks for any
>advice/information you can provide, and I apologize for asking questions
>which may have been answered in other threads. My questions (for now) are:
>
>1. Wiring: I've read that existing in-house cable wiring may not, under
>certain circumstances, be sufficient to operate the satellite dish and that
>the dish installer might need to run a new direct line from the dish to the
>rooms that will be served. In my home the cable enters underground in the
>basement and is split numerous times in the basement for distribution to
>almost every room in the house. Is it likely that a dish installer would
>need to run new direct lines under these circumstances?
>

The wire needs to be RG6 without spliters, you could split the output
of one receiver and make sure you get a box that has RF type remotes,
then one box & several tv's all tuned to same station could be tuned
in any room.

>2. Recording with VCRs: The dish companies push DVR receivers, which cause
>me to be suspicious about whether I could use my existing analogue VHS
>equipment to record digital programming from the dish. Can conventional VHS
>recorders be used? Can you watch one channel while recording another?

Vcr works great it even starts recording when a program comes up that
you wanted, nothing to do with the vcr other than have it on 3 &
turned on.
>
>3. Outages/Repair: Neither the web sites nor salepeople are very clear about
>the costs of sending somebody out to repoint the dish or otherwise perform
>repairs. Salepeople generally tell me that wind and other weather will not
>cause the dish to lose contact with the satellite and that the dish would
>not need to be "repointed" (the only issue they commonly mention is heavy
>snow). How often does service go out? Is there ever a need to repoint the
>dish, especially if it is exposed to 30-40 mph or higher winds?
>
The newer larger dishes suffer from outages much much less. usually
when it goes out here it out for less than a minute , just before
heavy rains come in. Snow has never bothered mine.


>4. Phone Lines: I've read that a least some of the satellite receiver units
>must be plugged into the phone line, ostensibly to permit the receiver to
>confirm that it is serving the house it was installed in. How often does the
>receiver use the phone line? What impact might there be if, for example, the
>receiver decides to use the phone line when I am using it for Internet
>access (or actually talking on the phone with someone)? Has anyone
>considered whether privacy issues are raised where a big corporation's black
>box has unfettered access to your telephone line?
>
Tell them you will hook them up then when they leave disconnect them.


>5. Dual tuner box: At least one dish company is now offering a receiver with
>dual tuners that can serve up the dish in two rooms independently (different
>channels watched in each). It appears that the second room served by this
>receiver would receive a mono audio signal only. Are there any other
>differences/problems I should be aware of with these dual tuner boxes?

>
>6. Use 3d party box: I think I've seen satellite receivers for sale in major
>retail stores. Can I avoid the monthly lease cost for extra receivers by
>buying one outright from a retailer and plugging it into an installation?

Buying a used box can be futile, check the box serial number with the
service ( dish or direct ) before purchase. They can have a large
number of unpaid PPV's which become yours if to enlist the box to your
account.

I chose Dish mostly because I am not that big of a sports fan ( NFL ,
direct is choice) Paying 1 year in advance gets you the service for
the price of 11 months with Dish.

The free equipment is a one time thing so get everything you want when
signing up. Programming is very similar, picture is better than our
cable was.

We bought a use dish, learned how to aim it and take a box along to
the lake & in the Motorhome. so the service follows us ( not the
locals though outside of metro area, approx 100 mile raidius)


>
>Thanks again for any advice.
Anonymous
July 1, 2005 6:33:07 PM

Archived from groups: alt.satellite.tv (More info?)

"AndyG" <andyg@snip.net> wrote in message
news:a9707$42c3d25b$d1cc41d1$27390@snip.allthenewsgroups.com...
> Sorry for the rather long post. I'm once again outraged at the high cost
> of basic cable and am seriously considering a move to satellite. I have
> some questions that I haven't been able to clear up by consulting
> satellite providers' web sites or speaking to their salepeople. Thanks for
> any advice/information you can provide, and I apologize for asking
> questions which may have been answered in other threads. My questions (for
> now) are:
>
> 1. Wiring: I've read that existing in-house cable wiring may not, under
> certain circumstances, be sufficient to operate the satellite dish and
> that the dish installer might need to run a new direct line from the dish
> to the rooms that will be served. In my home the cable enters underground
> in the basement and is split numerous times in the basement for
> distribution to almost every room in the house. Is it likely that a dish
> installer would need to run new direct lines under these circumstances?

Our installers used our old cable wiring. They do not like the splitters,
though. Our old wiring was not great but works fine with the sat signal.
>
> 2. Recording with VCRs: The dish companies push DVR receivers, which cause
> me to be suspicious about whether I could use my existing analogue VHS
> equipment to record digital programming from the dish. Can conventional
> VHS recorders be used? Can you watch one channel while recording another?
Not only can you use your VCR, but the DVR (Tivo) that DirecTV has even can
save a "Tivoed" show to tape for you if you want to save it forever.
>
> 3. Outages/Repair: Neither the web sites nor salepeople are very clear
> about the costs of sending somebody out to repoint the dish or otherwise
> perform repairs. Salepeople generally tell me that wind and other weather
> will not cause the dish to lose contact with the satellite and that the
> dish would not need to be "repointed" (the only issue they commonly
> mention is heavy snow). How often does service go out? Is there ever a
> need to repoint the dish, especially if it is exposed to 30-40 mph or
> higher winds?
Dish is very stable and probably wont' move. You get a 90 day warranty for
repairs. After that it is 70.00 bucks for a house call unless you get their
service plan (5.99 a month or 7.99 if you have a Tivo). If you have a
service plan everything is included (including surge damage, etc.).
>
> 4. Phone Lines: I've read that a least some of the satellite receiver
> units must be plugged into the phone line, ostensibly to permit the
> receiver to confirm that it is serving the house it was installed in. How
> often does the receiver use the phone line? What impact might there be if,
> for example, the receiver decides to use the phone line when I am using it
> for Internet access (or actually talking on the phone with someone)? Has
> anyone considered whether privacy issues are raised where a big
> corporation's black box has unfettered access to your telephone line?

You need a phone line for Tivo, and supposedly for a sports package (so they
can tell where you are and black out the right games). Other than this, you
only need the phone line for pay-per-view, etc.. and even then it only calls
in once in awhile. It will check to see if your line is in use before it
calls, and won't interfere with anything else. If you don't get a sports
package, don't get a Tivo and never use pay-per-view, you should not need a
phone line hooked up.
>
> 5. Dual tuner box: At least one dish company is now offering a receiver
> with dual tuners that can serve up the dish in two rooms independently
> (different channels watched in each). It appears that the second room
> served by this receiver would receive a mono audio signal only. Are there
> any other differences/problems I should be aware of with these dual tuner
> boxes?
Not familiar with this.
>
> 6. Use 3d party box: I think I've seen satellite receivers for sale in
> major retail stores. Can I avoid the monthly lease cost for extra
> receivers by buying one outright from a retailer and plugging it into an
> installation?
>
No--what you need from DirecTV is the access card which makes the box work.
You pay for the card, not the box.
> Thanks again for any advice.
>
>
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