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DirecTV goes mobile too.

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Installation/MDU Discussion' started by barryb, May 31, 2010.

  1. barryb

    barryb New Member

    2,937
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    Aug 26, 2007
    I thought it would be a good idea to start a thread pertaining to mobile DirecTV setups.

    Those who have motorhomes, boats and the like might benefit.

    Tripods , Motosat , Nomad , Winegard , Mobile DirecTV , KVH , Domes , Motorhomes , RV's , 5th wheels , or anything else related to DirecTV in mobile situations all are welcome.

    Motosat: http://motosat.com/index.php/tvante
    KVH: http://www.kvh.com/LandMobile/index.asp
    Winegard: http://winegard.com/mobile/index.php
     
  2. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    I have a 45'er with a Slimline 5 (Motosat).

    Nomad controller (D3). I am planning on upgrading my coach to SWiM/DECA and I am curious if anyone else has done this with the Nomad controller. I see there is an inline BBC connected right to the back of the D3. I also know that the Nomad D3 has a tuner in it to help it find the satellites needed.

    I am planning on swapping out my existing receivers with HR24's. I know these newer units run cooler than previous models, and thats a huge win for motorhomes with smaller install areas.

    If I use HR24s that do not require BBCs, how is this going to work?
     
  3. sigma1914

    sigma1914 Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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    Sep 5, 2006
    Allen, TX
    24s don't have built in BBCs.
     
  4. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    Allow me to rephrase: the HR24's do not require BBCs.
     
  5. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    I want to switch my RV setup to SWiM. If there is a BBC connected to my Nomad D3 controller (because it needs it), will this cause an issue?
     
  6. 4120 woodrow ct

    4120 woodrow ct AllStar

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    Oct 12, 2009
    yes they do... unless installed on a swm system...
     
  7. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    See #2 (above).
     
  8. carl6

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

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    Nov 15, 2005
    Seattle, WA
    I'm not familiar with your controller equipment, but if it requires a legacy satellite feed through a BBC, you won't be able to use a SWM LNB. In that case you would probably have to use an external SWM, and you will probably have to run an WB68 in parallel to it to provide the feed necessary for the controller.
     
  9. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    I just happen to have a couple extra SWiM8's sitting here. And a Zinwell. And some splitters. :lol:
     
  10. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    I will call Motosat in the morning and see what they suggest... and then report back with the ideal solution. I may be the first with this "problem", but I know I won't be the last.
     
  11. PokerJoker

    PokerJoker Godfather

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    Apr 12, 2008
    Las Vegas
    I also have a 45 foot coach with a Motosat TV dish. And I wired the entire Nomad install myself with a SWM8 switch, so I do have a little experience here.

    First - You need to realize that the Nomad controller in and of itself does not need a BBC. The only reason the instructions tell you to put one ahead of the Nomad is because the Nomad's "out to receiver" port won't pass the high frequencies needed for the HD satellites. The BBC downconverts them to a frequency that will pass through. The Nomad itself only needs to see a a "legacy" satellite feed. BBC or no BBC, it doesn't care, it will still aim the dish. And - here's a key point - this legacy feed can dead-end at the Nomad; you don't actually have to run any line at all from the Nomad to a receiver if you don't want/need to. The receivers can easily be fed separately if desired, using the other three dish coax lines directly, or using a switch if you need more lines. (This assumes that your installer did bring all 4 coax lines down from the dish. If he didn't, call him up and make him do it.)

    If the Nomad is a recent version (Nomad SD or SD2) with recent firmware, you can supposedly feed the four lines from the dish directly to a SWM8, feed the Nomad directly from one of the SWM8's "legacy" ports, and run your actual receivers from the SWM ports. I tried this back when I had a Nomad 3, but it didn't work. There is a workaround. The workaround is to run the four dish lines directly to a WB68 switch, feed the SWM8 from 4 of the WB68 ports, and feed the Nomad from another one of the WB68 ports. That's the setup I have and it works very well, even though I do now have the newer Nomad SD box.

    BTW You said "Nomad D3", which I don't think is an actual model name; Motosat made a D3, which was for an Internet dish; and they made a Nomad 3, which was a TV dish controller. But not a "Nomad D3", I don't think.

    The Motosat TV dish does need to use a real 4-wire SL5 LNB, it cannot use a SWM LNB, because it needs that legacy feed for aiming. If you want SWM, you must use a separate SWM-8 switch as described above.

    Like someone else noted, HR24s and H24s (unlike the 23s) do in fact require BBCs - IF they are on a non-SWM system. But if you convert to SWM as I described, there will be NO BBCs - ANYWHERE - in that system. I have none in my coach and everything works fine.

    Haven't tried DECA in my coach yet, because there really doesn't seem to be a need for it. But I see no reason why it wouldn't work, just follow the same rules as you would for a home system with a SWM8. The fun part might be talking D* into enabling it on your RV account. (You do have a separate RV account, don't you? ;) )

    Keith

    PS it's a very good idea to run the receivers (especially DVRs) and the SWM8 power inserter from a UPS power supply. They don't take well to sudden or repeated power interruptions, which can happen easily in an RV. The Nomad runs on 12V battery power, which should be an unswitched constant feed. I probably also should point out that my coach is virtually never powered down; it's always either on shore power, generator, or inverter.
     
  12. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    Exactly why I created this forum Keith. :)

    Makes perfect sense. Ever since I noticed that BBC on the back of the controller I have wondered why on earth it was there.

    This is exactly what I was thinking. If a "loop through" was not needed, this becomes very easy.

    He did [bring all four down]. I think you mean a splitter, not a switch. ;)

    I have the Nomad 3 (sorry about the confusion... I have two dishes on my coach. Both the 'HD' and a Datastorm). I have the module to update the firmware, so its always current.

    Out of curiosity: was an advantage to you upgrading to the SD2, other than the smaller foot print and SD slot in the front?

    I plan on doing the install myself. And yes, I have a copy of my waiver right here with me. I have not tried to see if DirecTV will come out and install the DECAs themselves (something tells me its a no), but I am sure they will give me the "unsupported" flag on my account.

    I just happen to have extra DECAs and a couple of SWiM8's laying here, so I think I am gonna move forward on this one. The main reason I am doing this is to get MRV going. I have room for a third receiver (right now my bay TV is being fed off the same receiver as the bedroom TV), and with 3 receivers I can store a lot of movies that can be accessed from any receiver. I have a kid, so this is a win for her.


    I have an all electric myself, so I understand.

    I will have two new HR24-500's in my hands this week and plan on switching those immediately. They seem to run cooler, and we both know how important that is.

    Thank you for your knowledgeable reply Keith.
     
  13. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    If you have not seen the Dishpointer app for the iPhone (works on my 3Gs), here is a video of it in action. I use this a bit as sometimes I need to park my coach in between trees, and this makes it easy to find that "sweet spot".

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5AFtcgYRcu4

    I understand this is also available for the Droid as well.
     
  14. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    SWiM's have a legacy port, so no Zinwell should ever be needed in a motorhome/Nomad controller zinwell-to-SWiM conversion.

    It was also just pointed out to me that BBC's don't "down convert", they up-convert.
     
  15. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    I just got off the phone with Motosat, and they want me to get back to them on my hookup. They told me that the BBC was not needed before the Nomad controller. It could have been on the back of the receiver just the same.

    I told them my idea of using the legacy port on the SWiM (to the dish controller), and I then explained to them the benefit of having MRV in a motorhome, and they agreed to the point where they want me to email them the specifics once I get it up and running.
     
  16. SnoBear

    SnoBear New Member

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    To change topic to Winegard:

    I'm interested in upgrading my dome type dish (King Dome) to a Winegard Travler HD, but ....

    Currently they use the 5 lnb setup - 99 to 119 degree spread, but todays HD programming uses 99 to 101 (3 lnb).

    In lots of locations, in the trees, 99 to 119 won't work, but 99 to 101 will. Does the Winegard dish need to see 119 to properly align itself to multiple sats?

    Will probably have to ask Winegard, but thought I'd toss it out for your thoughts.

    Thanks
    Brad
     
  17. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
  18. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    If it is that model, then you should have no problem. In most of these "auto dishes" there is firmware in place that keys in on one satellite. With the Nomad (Motosat), it just needs to find one of the birds and then knows where to "settle in".

    The key here is to make sure you buy your dish from a authorized reseller (as opposed to lets say, eBay) to insure your new baby has the newest firmware installed.

    As most of us know, there has been some changes up in the sky with the launch of D12. I had to update my firmware some weeks ago.

    I found the instruction manual for the unit I mentioned above (warning .pdf file):
    http://winegard.com/kbase/upload/2452149.pdf

    Your best bet is to call the manufacturer (number is in the above link), and see what they say.
     
  19. PokerJoker

    PokerJoker Godfather

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    Apr 12, 2008
    Las Vegas
    You're right about the BBC. Must have had brain fade here when I wrote that. What I should have said is that the Nomad won't pass the lower frequencies through.

    I totally agree that my use of the WB68 should not have been needed. The whole setup should have worked just as you say, using the legacy output from a SWM8. And in fact that's what the dealer originally told me to do. Unfortunately, with the Nomad 3 that I had at the time, it simply would not work. And I tried every possibility to make it work, for about two days. I complained to the dealer and he talked to Motosat and they said "We're sending you a new Nomad SD". Between the time they said that, and the time it arrived, I had discovered and implemented the WB68 workaround. (Cost me nothing, I had the parts laying around.) Of course I'm not about to turn down a new controller, so when it arrived I installed it. I just didn't bother un-installing the WB68 at that point. It works, why mess with it. Maybe if I get real curious and have time to kill, I'll try bypassing the WB68 and see if it does work now on just a SWM-8. Or maybe I'll just let you try it. :lol:

    Good luck with your install.

    Keith

    PS other than the SWM8 issue, the Nomad SD is functionally the same as the Nomad 3. It is smaller, and the SD slot makes it a lot easier to update firmware. As for the SD2, I haven't seen one so I can't comment, but it looks pretty much the same on the web site.
     
  20. barryb

    barryb New Member

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    Aug 26, 2007
    I am hoping to make some time to "play around" on Saturday. I have two HR24's coming to replace the aging units installed, and that in itself is going to be great.

    We do about 10-20k miles a year, so its not like "that thing that sits in the driveway all the time".. its our second home.
     

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