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SWM16 causing 1 of my splitters to go bad?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by Garyunc, May 23, 2012.

  1. Garyunc

    Garyunc Godfather

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    Oct 7, 2006
    I have a SWM16 with 2 8 way green label splitters. Splitter 2 from output 2 has HR34 and 3 H24s. Splitter 1 has 4 HR-2x dvrs. This setup has been working fine for 5 months. I got the HR34 in January so all 16 tuners have only been in use for that time period. The SWM16 has been around for at least 2 years.

    We woke up last Wed with 1 of the Dvrs getting the 771 error. I called D* and they sent a tech. He replaced the splitter 1 and rewired the SWM power claiming that might be the problem. I disagreed with him but it was working when he left.

    The very next day the power went out briefly and when all of the receivers had rebooted the same dvr was getting a 771 error. D* sent another tech. He replaced the same splitter 1 and rewired the SWM power the way it was before tech 1 and the correct way IMO. Once again everything was fine when he left.

    This morning, we had another power outage (it is storm season in NC) and this time a different dvr on splitter 1 is getting the 771. All other receivers are fine just like the last 2 times. D* is sending another tech. Should I push him to replace the SWM16 as it could be causing the splitter to have a problem with apparently losing only 2 tuners? Any other ideas as to be what could be causing this?

    Also I should mention that the SWM power inserter is on a UPS but none of the receivers are on a UPS.


    BTW this time when the tech replaces the splitter. I am going to reboot all of the DVRs before he leaves !!!!
     
  2. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    There are two ways to power the SWiM-16: through the PWR connector between the 2 outputs, or through SWiM #1. Neither is wrong, and both give flexibility.
    Splitters are almost bulletproof, so the odds of one going bad is very low.
    When power is lost, as it returns the SWiM will reassign channels to each/all the tuners.
    Since you're at the full 16 tuner load, all the frequencies/channels are being used. This means if the loss between the SWiM and a receivers is going to be more important.
    It might be worth checking some things:
    Power down everything.
    Power the SWiM back up and then go to the receiver that is the farthest from the SWiM and power it up. After it comes up, go to the next farthest receiver and power it up.
    Work your way to the SWiM, where the closest receiver is the last one powered up.
    Doing these steps as the lowest frequencies assigned to the farthest receivers, and the highest to the closest.
    Do they all now work?
    If so, it seems to have a loss issue, which can be helped by changing the 8-way splitters to 4-way splitters, as this can reduce the loss by almost 5 dB.
     
  3. carl6

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

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    Yes, absolutely change the splitters to 4-way. And, if the problem returns in the future, following veryoldschool's advise for restarting the system should get you going without a need for DirecTV service call.
     
  4. jagrim

    jagrim Hall Of Fame

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    After having the same type of issue, change the SWM16. The splitters are not going bad, the SWM16 is going bad.

    My case management tech changed everything except the SWM16 and redid every connection. He changed my 4 way splitters for 8 way splitters and then terminated the unused ports. The SWM16 failed less than 12 hours later.
     
  5. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    To try to put some values to this:
    The SWiM supports 30 dB of loss between it and the receivers.
    If there's 150' of coax, at the low frequency the loss is about 10 dB, and at the high frequency is about 14 dB.
    The 8-way splitter has about 12 dB on the low & 14 on the high.
    This means if the longest coax is using the highest frequency, the loss is 14 + 14 = 28 dB, which is very close to the limit. If the coax is longer than it won't work.
    If the longest coax/receiver is using the lowest frequency, 10 + 12 = 22 dB, which is well within range.

    A good system should work with the highest frequency on the longest run.

    Changing to a 4-way splitter means its loss is 8 dB on the low & 10 dB on the high, so either 10 + 8 = 18 dB, or 14 + 10 = 24 dB, which is well within the range of the SWiM.
     
  6. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    So he added loss to your system that wasn't needed.

    Yes a SWiM can fail like any other device, but troubleshooting is a good place to start.
     
  7. Garyunc

    Garyunc Godfather

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    Thanks Guys. I will try rebooting everything but I am still inclined to think it is a swm problem since it was working. I will let you know the results.
     
  8. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I agree it isn't working "properly", but as to why it isn't, is what I'm trying to find out.

    Maybe the first question needing an answer is how long are your coax runs?
     
  9. jagrim

    jagrim Hall Of Fame

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    Actually he said the "preferred DTV setup" is to use an 8 way splitter instead of a 4 way. He probably could have saved himself a lot of time and trouble by just changing the SWM16 at the start.
     
  10. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    "preferred" may have simply come down to what he had on the truck.
    "one size" doesn't fit all.

    From their own training:

    approved.PNG

    non approved.PNG
     
  11. Garyunc

    Garyunc Godfather

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    Now I am worse off. I powered down everything and the first hr-2x on splitter 1 came up and 2 of h24s on splitter 2 came up. These are all upstairs. 2nd hr-2x is getting 771. Nothing else is powered up at this point. Should I continue to try the other receivers or restart the process? I did already reboot the 2nd HR-2x once after it came up with 771 the first time.

    Cable runs are probably 50-60 ft for the ones upstairs (3 receivers upstairs) and 25ft to 40 ft for the 5 down stairs. Hard to say for sure.
     
  12. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Those cable runs are short enough than none of this should matter, so it's looking like the SWiM has failed.
     
  13. Garyunc

    Garyunc Godfather

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    Oct 7, 2006
    Yes that is what I thought. Thanks for the verification.
     

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