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Want to upgrade to HD - equipment issues?

Discussion in 'DISH™ High Definition Discussion' started by sparky672, Jan 12, 2015.

  1. sparky672

    sparky672 New Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Chicago
    I have an older Dish Network setup that I'd like to upgrade to HD but there are some potential issues holding me back... I'm hoping that you can help clear up some of the unknown issues for me.

    Equipment: Dish Network 4-receiver setup with Model DISH311 boxes and a DISH500 (w/ dual-LNB) with a single DP34 switch, located in the Chicago area. (I also have another antenna pointed at 61.5 that I don't believe I'll keep).

    1. The DISH500 antenna is mounted remotely (50' away from house) on a pole with a very limited line-of-sight picking up 110 and 119. Does upgrading to HD require pointing at new satellite locations in the sky? If so, where? I'm hoping it's the same area or very close... I cannot rotate more towards the S, and I can only rotate a little more towards the SW if needed. I cannot tilt down, but can tilt upwards without limitation.

    2. There are two buried coax lines running to the antenna pole from #1 above. Does upgrading to HD require a new antenna and LNBs? If so, how many and which model(s)? Will two coax lines be enough? Currently, my DISH500 antenna has a DISHPRO dual LNB.

    3. Mounted on the house, I have an antenna pointed at 61.5 using one LNB, but again, this one has a narrow line of sight. AFAIK, I don't even watch the channels coming from this one, so it can be abandoned or used for something else.

    4. I already know that upgrading to HD requires new receivers. Can I use a mix of old and new receivers? I have a DP34 switch. Depending on upgrade costs, I may switch to DirecTV.

    5. I am also open to switching to DirecTV if it helps me avoid having to move the remote pole and buried lines.

    THANK-YOU for any information and insight you can provide.
     
  2. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Jan 7, 2005
    Kittrell, NC
    Hi, and welcome...

    I don't know what Chicago requires... but I do know there are potential problems with your setup as you describe it. In order to get all the HD channels you either need to see 110/119 and 129 OR 61.5/72.7 and possibly 77. I don't know where your LiL and RSNs are located, so that makes the difference in which set of satellites that you need.

    So either your 61.5 would have to be repointed towards 129 OR you'd need a whole system repoint and new dish possibly to get 61.5/72.7 and possibly 77 if that's where your LiLs are.

    If you are on the 61.5/72.7 arc you will not be able to use any "old" receivers... only ViP receivers and newer will work on that arc. If you get a Hopper/Joey setup you may need newer LNB or switches as well.

    It's hard to say a lot more for sure... and I certainly don't know what a change to DirecTV might mean.
     
  3. sparky672

    sparky672 New Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Chicago
    Thank-you for your reply.

    - I think it's possible for me to get 110/119/129 from my remote pole location. However, that setup would require a third coax, right?

    - It would be impossible for me to see 129 from my 61.5 mount location. However, I just might be able to see 61.5/72.7/77 from this mount and since it's already on the house, the number of coax wires would not matter to me.

    What are "LiL" and "RSN" and how can I find out about these for my zip code?

    I'm not interested in Hopper/Joey... so that means older antenna/LNBs and switches could work?

    I'm not particularly interested in the "old" receivers so much as a mix of SD and HD equipment. As per the Dish website, that part is answered as they seem to offer equipment that will work with both SD and HD.

    I'm also asking a lot of antenna related questions just in case I want to travel with one of my boxes. It also matters as I'd rather just order new SD/HD receivers and do any installation work myself rather than deal with Dish on this.
     
  4. shadough

    shadough Icon

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    Dec 31, 2006
    Are you sure you can see 129? you said you cannot tilt down at the 110/119 location. 129 is down, way down, lower in the sky that 119, albeit slightly more west. I would think your 61.5 location is the better bet. Change out that dish for the HD eastern ark dish 1K.4. which would be 61.5/72/77 Question is, can more cable be run to THAT location? 2 cables would work if you only get 2 receivers, an they can be 2 DUAL tuner HD recvrs, for 2-room install, w/ TV-2 output giving you 2 more room locations, 4 rooms total (2HD, 2SD). If that location could have 3 total cables, then you could go as high as 12 tuners/recvrs

    A split ARC may also be possible. It might be possible to re-aim the 61.5 to 72, an viola, you've got HD, split ARC 110/119/72. You only need 1 cable per orbital location back to your dp34 switch. Question is where your locals are from?!?! The HD ones that is. I myself have split ARC, have the 1K.4 dish aimed east to get 61.5 an 72, an a dish 500 west for 110/119. 119 has my locals SD, while 61.5 has my locals HD. Main reason I wanted split arc was cuz of DNS, AAD channels were on 119 only, course those are gone now, so the only real benefit now is thunderstorms, when 1 comes from the west, blocks the dish500, I can still get picture from the 1K.4, if only for a lil while.
     
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  5. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Jan 7, 2005
    Kittrell, NC
    LiL refers to your locals, specifically to your scenario the locals in HD determines which arc you should point to... IF your locals are on eastern arc (61.5/72.7/77) then that forces you to point to that arc if you want your locals... also, eastern arc means only ViP or newer equipment, so any older receivers you have now will not work on eastern arc.

    RSNs are the regional sports networks.

    IF your locals are on the western arc, then 110/119/129 is your needed setup. Since you said you can't adjust your 110/119 dish much, as shadough says getting 129 at that location might be a problem.

    How many cables you need from the dish kind of depends on how many receivers you intend to hook up and how you intend to hook them up...

    If you have a dish with a built-in switch... you might only need 2 cables from that to drive two Dish receivers... IF you run more than that then you need a third cable and possibly a DPP44 switch as well.

    The first thing would be finding out whether you should be on eastern or western arc... because that will narrow some of your options quite a bit. Once you know that, you can start to look at potential new equipment.

    With Hopper/Joey you couldn't have any other model receivers on your account except for a 211 model for RV accounts... so if you aren't interested in Hopper/Joey you have more flexible receiver options available to you.
     
  6. sparky672

    sparky672 New Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Chicago
    Thank-you to both of you. I'll do more research about which arc I'll need.

    When I looked at the 110/119/129 setup in dishpointer.com it reported an elevation of 32.7 compared to my existing elevation of 35.1, so if I cannot tilt down enough to clear the obstacles, I should be able to compensate for that with a slightly longer pole.
     
  7. Jim5506

    Jim5506 Hall Of Fame

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    Jun 7, 2004
    IIRC, Chicago has HD locals on both arcs, and if he has line of sight to the 129 satellite the fastest and easiest would be to swing the 61.5 satellite around to pick up 129.

    It sounds like the DP34 switch connects the D500 to the 61.5 dish on the house. Is there line of sight to the southwest from the 61.5 dish?

    Look at Dishpointer.com and select Chicago and select the 129 satellite - looks like azimuth is 235.7 degrees magnetic and elevation is about 26 degrees.

    You can fine tune the Google map to sit right on your house and it will point to the 129 satellite and give you an idea of any obstacles.

    You did not describe the area around your house but the most important issue is line of sight to the satellites - without that there is no chance with either satellite company.
     
  8. sparky672

    sparky672 New Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Chicago
    Hi Jim, thanks for responding. I appreciate it.

    If I had line-of-site to the southwest from my 61.5 location, I would have just mounted both dishes on the house in the first place and saved 100' of cable. So although that idea is the best, unfortunately it's just not possible.

    The DP34 is inside the basement.

    Yes, I agree, line of site is the most critical issue, which is why I had to mount a pole 50' away and bury two cables. I am dealing with large trees and a few out-buildings.

    - I can see the SE from the front of the house and so 61.5 is presently mounted there. It would be possible to run extra cables and mount more dishes at this location pointing SE. However, this location might be problematic in the future with tree growth.

    - I can see the SW from a pole 50' behind the house & trees and 110/119 is presently mounted there. With some messing around, I could likely pick-up 129 from this pole but would have to bury another cable and probably sink another pole. This location will not be obscured by future tree growth.

    So if I understand you correctly... as long as I can point a single dish at 129 (while keeping my present 110/119) setup and then put these 3 feeds into my DP34, all I'll need is a new digital receiver? Which model(s)?
     
  9. scooper

    scooper Hall Of Fame

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    Youngsville NC
    Good news on the Locals front - Chicago is on both 129 and 61.5, so the situation becomes which one is easier to setup.

    As stated - if you go Eastern Arc - you will be totally replacing everything - Dishes as well as switches and receivers. All your receivers would need to be the VIP series or a Hopper system. Since you currently have 4 receivers - for every 311, replace with a 211, replace the DP34 switch with the DPP44 switch, replace the 61.5 Dish with an Eastern Arc 1000.2 dish / LNB. If you currently have a DVR, that would be replaced with a VIP 622/722/722K. The slots you need would be 61.5 and 72.7, and since you can already get 61.5 - 72.7 shouldn't be that hard to get.


    On the flip side - going western Arc requires 110,119, and 129 - and you have already stated that 129 may be iffy. - more later.
    Later -
    Using western Arc would let you continue using your existing SD receivers, replacing with HD ones as desired. If you want an HD DVR - I'd replace the DP34 switch with a DPP44 switch. You could see if your 61.5 dish can be aimed at 129, and not even change out the Dish500 - if it will work to get 129.


    Dish will not generally go mixed arc setups. Having an HD receiver doesnot prevent you from using an SD TV - but you have to be using the composite video / analog RCA jacks and not coax cable (depending on the model of receiver). And the Dish HD receivers do a fine job of downconverting the HD to SD - it will be best SD satellite picture you have ever seen :) .


    I don't know if have considered it, but you could possibly use receivers with dual tuners / outputs and still cover 4 TVs, but with only 2 receivers.The VIP222 works quite well (and it is what I'm using). Put the receiver with your HDTV, then you can run coax to an SD TV off the RF output. It would be best to use the DPP44 switch (or maybe the DPP33 if you have 3 or less receivers). As far as converting your existing 4 SD receivers to this - replace the DP34 switch with one of the DPP44 or DPP33, and use the triplexer to backfeed the distribution output. At the Switch end, you would place a diplexer and connect the TV2 to the ANT port (the SAT port goes to the switch). You could even combine the RF output of 2 before sending them out - then the TV2 locations would have their choice of which TV2 output to view by changing channels.
     
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  10. scooper

    scooper Hall Of Fame

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    Also , if you go 2 receivers, and put 129 dish out there with the 110/119 dish, you would not need any more cable buried. However, you would need either the DPP 33 / DPP44 switches or replace the LNB on the 110/119 dish with a DPP TWIN (that would have an input for a wing dish such as 129). You could also replace the Dish500 with the 1000.2 western Arc HD dish, and that is also a DPP LNB - so 2 cables would serve 2 dual tuner receivers. The DP34 switch would have to come out, but you could use the diplexers discussed last post for distribution.

    And as you are in Chicago - and it is winter - do you REALLY want to be burying cable / putting another pole in the ground ?
     
  11. Jim5506

    Jim5506 Hall Of Fame

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    Your D500 is marginally capable of receiving 61.5 and 72.7.

    It is designed for 110 and 119 (a 9 degree spread) but the eye has enough slop built into it that others have successfully used it to watch 61.5 and 72.7 (an 11.2 degree spread), although the signal levels are necessarily lower than they would be with a D1000.2 EA dish.

    A third option would be to leave the signal dish @ 61.5 and point one "eye" of the D500 directly at 72.7, disconnecting the other "eye" of the D500.

    If the D500 can't see 72.7 from the ground location, put it in the mount on your house used for your single lnb dish and try the first option above.

    With your current setup you are missing most of the Dish HD channels, there are a few on 110, bur most are on 129 and 72.7, with 61.5 being primarily HD locals.
     
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  12. scooper

    scooper Hall Of Fame

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    To go further with Jim's post - you can get a piece called an I adapter that lets you use just one LNB on the Dish500, and it is a "bigger" dish than the 18 inchers = more signal. I would still replace the DP34 switch with a DPP33 or DPP44 (this would be more versatile).
     
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  13. harsh

    harsh Beware the Attack Basset

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    Salem, OR
    Rather than trying to reinvent the wheel, have you contemplated calling DISH and setting up a DIU where they do all the work and bring all the parts?
     
  14. scooper

    scooper Hall Of Fame

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    DIU = Dish It Up -
     
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  15. sparky672

    sparky672 New Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Chicago
    I'm not trying to re-invent anything. I'm trying to learn about which equipment options I have before calling Dish Network.

    I assume they'll want to charge me for all this... so I need to know which parts I can obtain myself. I'm not paying full retail price plus installation for equipment I can obtain elsewhere (or that I may already have) and install myself.

    Also, since I have issues with line-of-sight, it's better that I figure out where dishes can be mounted beforehand. In any case, if another pole needs to be set in the ground or lines buried, I'm doing that myself regardless.
     
  16. sparky672

    sparky672 New Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Chicago
    After everything I've learned here, I'm going to stick with the Western arc, no matter what it takes. At the very least, I'll be installing a second higher pole, somewhere near my 110/119 pole, so I can hit the lower elevation of 129.

    You've given me some great options/ideas for avoiding a third wire. Thank-you!

    No, you're right... Winter in Chicago, so I will not being doing anything until Spring... just gathering information now.

    ------

    I actually don't need four receivers here. One HD and one SD would be good enough. Like I stated earlier, I'm also interested in one HD receiver at another location so the western arc with three standard 300 dishes and the appropriate switch (DP33 ?) is also possible, right? Otherwise, I think I have a couple extra 500's.

    I see I can also get pre-owned HD Dish Network receivers on eBay. Will Dish activate these? I mean, can I buy one, move my existing card, and call Dish to activate it?
     
  17. sparky672

    sparky672 New Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Chicago
    Thank-you for the excellent suggestions and information. Unfortunately, since the SE view already contains some vegetation, along with what you're saying about marginal signals, it would not be good for the long term as my trees grow wider and taller.

    I'll probably end up doing whatever it takes to make the Western Arc (110/119/129) work for me. Right now, I think a second taller pole should do it.
     
  18. sparky672

    sparky672 New Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Chicago
    Does the 1000.2 have the switch built into it? If so, then my two buried wires can support two receivers, correct? either SD or HD?

    A 1000.2 on eBay
     
  19. scooper

    scooper Hall Of Fame

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    Yes, a 1000.2 LNB (110,119, 129) is a combination LNBs and a 4 by 3 switch (3 LNBs, one extra wing input , 3 outputs) . With that installed - your DP34 is not necessary, and you can serve up to 3 receivers. If you need more than that - add a DPP44 switch in place of the DP34 switch.

    The 1000.2 Eastern arc only has 2 LNBs (61.5 and 72.7) and a Wing input, and I think it also has 3 outputs.
     
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  20. scooper

    scooper Hall Of Fame

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    Negative on moving a card from one receiver to another - Dish WILL NOT DO THAT - end of discussion. What Dish WILL do is provide you a replacement card. This may entail extra charge.

    Be VERY careful about buying used receivers. At the very least ask the seller for the R and S numbers so you can check with Dish if A) - the customer actually OWNS (as opposed to leases the receiver) B) - there are no PPV charges waiting to be paid. If the seller doesn't want to provide them - walk away.
     
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