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Intermittent tuner failure


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118 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   peters4n6

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 10:45 AM

This is a follow-up post to this recent thread:

http://www.dbstalk.c...ad.php?t=186970

In brief, had HR21 with intermittent 771 errors, wildly fluctuating transponder readings, culminating in zero transponder readings across the board. eventually had zeros all the time (but originally would start, weirdly, at night at about the same time, 10 PM). Bought hr24, and alll was well for three weeks.

Last night, remarkably at 10 PM, got the 771 errors, zeros on the transponders, etc...and could not past the 771 errors on two resets. Exhausted I turned the tv off and this am, signals are rock solid.

When everything was going to hell, I checked my other two dvrs and they were just fine.

I even had a tech out here two days ago to inspect my dish and connections, so I doubt a hardware failure at the dish/swm.

any insights? weird about the timing no? there are other posts re: intermittent tuner failure (from '08) solved by returning for replacement, but am unclear still about possible cause.


One HR21 with AM21 OTA (playroom)

One HR24-100 (great room)
One HR24-500 (Master BR) with AM21 OTA
SL5-SWM
two receivers with 1TB drives in external enclosures connected via esata.
Winegard hd-1080 UHF/hi-VHF antenna


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#2 OFFLINE   veryoldschool

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 10:55 AM

This happened before around here just about the same time of year too.
It turned out to be related to the Christmas lights turning on. The member had three sets on a timer and two wouldn't cause it, but the third did.
After much :confused: and then some more :confused:, the power company did something that made it go away.
A.K.A VOS

#3 OFFLINE   davring

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 10:55 AM

LNB's can become erratic with temperature fluctuations,'cold evenings can make them fail and recover in the morning sun. Although you have other receivers that don't seem to be affected, I wouldn't discount that possibility.

#4 OFFLINE   peters4n6

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 11:30 AM

LNB's can become erratic with temperature fluctuations,'cold evenings can make them fail and recover in the morning sun. Although you have other receivers that don't seem to be affected, I wouldn't discount that possibility.

davring,

FWIW, the problems did start once evening temperatures dipped toward freezing, although 10 pm here in Southern AZ is a little bit early in the evening any time of year to get near 32 degrees F.

I guess I could replace the LNB unit, although I have no idea how to it...although I presume it might require repointing the dish after install.


One HR21 with AM21 OTA (playroom)

One HR24-100 (great room)
One HR24-500 (Master BR) with AM21 OTA
SL5-SWM
two receivers with 1TB drives in external enclosures connected via esata.
Winegard hd-1080 UHF/hi-VHF antenna


#5 OFFLINE   hilmar2k

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 11:34 AM

davring,

FWIW, the problems did start once evening temperatures dipped toward freezing, although 10 pm here in Southern AZ is a little bit early in the evening any time of year to get near 32 degrees F.

I guess I could replace the LNB unit, although I have no idea how to it...although I presume it might require repointing the dish after install.


Maybe, not always. Swapping out the LNB is really easy as long as the dish is easy to get to. Should take less than 10 mimutes.

#6 OFFLINE   peters4n6

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 12:36 PM

shame i just spent $89 on a service call a couple of days ago if I might need to get 'em back here again.


One HR21 with AM21 OTA (playroom)

One HR24-100 (great room)
One HR24-500 (Master BR) with AM21 OTA
SL5-SWM
two receivers with 1TB drives in external enclosures connected via esata.
Winegard hd-1080 UHF/hi-VHF antenna


#7 OFFLINE   armchair

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 02:17 PM

shame i just spent $89 on a service call a couple of days ago if I might need to get 'em back here again.


If it's the same issue, no charge for a return service call. Most likely, the LNB will be replaced and dish re-pointed if you insist on that.

#8 OFFLINE   BattleZone

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 02:42 PM

It could also be a damaged cable run. More than once, we've done service calls on homes where the outer jacket of the cable was cut/damaged and allowed water to get inside. The moisture will travel down the cable, so even if you cut out the damaged portion, the "good" part may still be full of water. You have to replace the entire run to fix the problem.

You can also have problems where cold temps cause the center conductor to contract enough that it will lose contact at one of the connection points.

One of the problems is the very robustness of the system; you can "get away" with doing lots of things wrong, and the system will still work MOST of the time. But if you want the system to be *very* reliable, you must do everything right everytime, or something will catch you.

Commercial & Residential Satellite System Design & Installation
DirecTV, Dish Network & Free-To-Air


#9 OFFLINE   peters4n6

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 03:54 PM

It could also be a damaged cable run. More than once, we've done service calls on homes where the outer jacket of the cable was cut/damaged and allowed water to get inside. The moisture will travel down the cable, so even if you cut out the damaged portion, the "good" part may still be full of water. You have to replace the entire run to fix the problem.

You can also have problems where cold temps cause the center conductor to contract enough that it will lose contact at one of the connection points.

One of the problems is the very robustness of the system; you can "get away" with doing lots of things wrong, and the system will still work MOST of the time. But if you want the system to be *very* reliable, you must do everything right everytime, or something will catch you.


Thanks for that insight. One thing I have not done that piggybacks on your theory is I'm going to switch the cable run from my central closet to the "other" run. That is to say that originally when I built this home, I had two runs of RG-6 going from the central closet (where the main line from the SWM comes into the house) to each room. Now with SWM technology I have an extra run to each room just sitting there idle. Maybe there's some sort of damage (water, other) to that run. Why I seem to have the problems at ~10 PM is another story, but damage to this run of cable might very adequately explain why the other two receivers in my house have never had a problem.

In the end I think the 10 o'clock thing will likely end up being a coincidence as that is the most frequent time of the day I'd be watching TV.

One last question/comments about your concern about the cold and contraction of the central conductor. If that were true, wouldn't the problem be rampant in colder climates?


One HR21 with AM21 OTA (playroom)

One HR24-100 (great room)
One HR24-500 (Master BR) with AM21 OTA
SL5-SWM
two receivers with 1TB drives in external enclosures connected via esata.
Winegard hd-1080 UHF/hi-VHF antenna


#10 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 25 December 2010 - 08:26 AM

Thanks for that insight. One thing I have not done that piggybacks on your theory is I'm going to switch the cable run from my central closet to the "other" run. That is to say that originally when I built this home, I had two runs of RG-6 going from the central closet (where the main line from the SWM comes into the house) to each room. Now with SWM technology I have an extra run to each room just sitting there idle. Maybe there's some sort of damage (water, other) to that run. Why I seem to have the problems at ~10 PM is another story, but damage to this run of cable might very adequately explain why the other two receivers in my house have never had a problem.

In the end I think the 10 o'clock thing will likely end up being a coincidence as that is the most frequent time of the day I'd be watching TV.

One last question/comments about your concern about the cold and contraction of the central conductor. If that were true, wouldn't the problem be rampant in colder climates?


Been really cold in NJ lately and I've not had any problems.

I'd stick one of your other receivers on the cable you're having problems with and see if that has the same issues. If it doesn't, you might have a problem with the original receiver.

Rich

#11 OFFLINE   peters4n6

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Posted 03 January 2011 - 11:02 PM

Been about ten days without a problem and whamo! zeros across the board (although a quick signal check while the signal was 0 on the 101 showed 80s on the 103 (?) and then zeros there too. my other two receivers were without problem at the same time.

Anyway after multiple rb-resets with cable switching, diplexer replacement, and even a new run of cable to my central closet, the only thing that got me back a signal was removing the AM-21 from the setup (although once i got my signal back i hooked the am-21 back in and everything remained ok). i took the am-21 out of the loop and will watch for any further changes. opinions as always appreciated.


One HR21 with AM21 OTA (playroom)

One HR24-100 (great room)
One HR24-500 (Master BR) with AM21 OTA
SL5-SWM
two receivers with 1TB drives in external enclosures connected via esata.
Winegard hd-1080 UHF/hi-VHF antenna


#12 OFFLINE   veryoldschool

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Posted 03 January 2011 - 11:22 PM

Been about ten days without a problem and whamo! zeros across the board (although a quick signal check while the signal was 0 on the 101 showed 80s on the 103 (?) and then zeros there too. my other two receivers were without problem at the same time.

Anyway after multiple rb-resets with cable switching, diplexer replacement, and even a new run of cable to my central closet, the only thing that got me back a signal was removing the AM-21 from the setup (although once i got my signal back i hooked the am-21 back in and everything remained ok). i took the am-21 out of the loop and will watch for any further changes. opinions as always appreciated.

Not sure if this was mentioned before "but" this diplexer may not be passing the 2.3 MHz FSK comm signal that well to the SWiM.
You might want to try this without any diplexing the next time and see if it goes away. Sounds like this diplexer [or the combination of two if used] might be marginal for the FSK signal.
A.K.A VOS

#13 OFFLINE   peters4n6

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 07:11 AM

Not sure if this was mentioned before "but" this diplexer may not be passing the 2.3 MHz FSK comm signal that well to the SWiM.
You might want to try this without any diplexing the next time and see if it goes away. Sounds like this diplexer [or the combination of two if used] might be marginal for the FSK signal.


What is the 2.3 MHz FSK comm signal? It seems that it has something to do with communicating with the SWM. If that is the case why would the other two units work? And if it is the problem, how can one use an AM21 in one's setup? FWIW, the diplexers I'm using (see below) have been in my setup for three years.

FWIW, I am using Channel Master 4001IFD VHF/UHF Satellite Diplexer/Separator (CM4001IFD) at all three units with an AM21. the other two units are HR21 boxes which have never had a problem.


One HR21 with AM21 OTA (playroom)

One HR24-100 (great room)
One HR24-500 (Master BR) with AM21 OTA
SL5-SWM
two receivers with 1TB drives in external enclosures connected via esata.
Winegard hd-1080 UHF/hi-VHF antenna


#14 OFFLINE   David MacLeod

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 08:29 AM

can confirm hr21 (I have 3) will work fine while a hr24 (I have 1) WILL have issues with this that match this scenario. I also have channel masters.
works fine...all of a sudden all zeros.
remove diplex, all fine on all units.
edit: see I need to update my signature too :)
Dave MacLeod
S.I.H.

#15 OFFLINE   veryoldschool

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 09:05 AM

What is the 2.3 MHz FSK comm signal? It seems that it has something to do with communicating with the SWM... And if it is the problem, how can one use an AM21 in one's setup? FWIW, the diplexers I'm using (see below) have been in my setup for three years.

Yes, it's what the receivers & SWiM use for control.
Diplexing has been unsupported for a long time. For the FSK signal to pass through a diplexer, it must pass through the DC circuit which has a large coke filtering out "almost" everything but DC, as the high pass side has a blocking cap, which is what feeds the SWiM.
So to answer "how can one use an AM21?", it would be to use a separate coax.
A.K.A VOS

#16 OFFLINE   David MacLeod

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 09:19 AM

fwiw after this started to happen last month or so ago I did try different combiners and diplexers, no help.
remove diplex and ran ota line to each tv, split there to go to each am21 and tv tuner.
Dave MacLeod
S.I.H.

#17 OFFLINE   veryoldschool

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 10:20 AM

Whether this is true or still available, I don't know:

The NAS STD-9501 satellite diplexer is design specifically to work with the Directv SWiM (Single Wire Multiswitch) technology. The special diplexer does not block the lower frequency bands that the SWiM technology uses to operate the system.


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#18 OFFLINE   peters4n6

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 10:41 AM

can confirm hr21 (I have 3) will work fine while a hr24 (I have 1) WILL have issues with this that match this scenario. I also have channel masters.
works fine...all of a sudden all zeros.
remove diplex, all fine on all units.
edit: see I need to update my signature too :)


That's actually very heartening to hear of a similar problem. Interestingly, what brought me down this path was what I thought was a dying HR-21 tuner, one that I took from room to room and saw that it was all zeroes at my two other receiver locations. While moving other functioning HR21 units to location of the "bad" one would find them to work just fine. So I replaced it with a hr24-500 which was fine for about 3 weeks before having the above-stated problems. I've since returned the "bad" HR21 to D*; I wonder now if it was ever bad...

Yes, it's what the receivers & SWiM use for control.
Diplexing has been unsupported for a long time. For the FSK signal to pass through a diplexer, it must pass through the DC circuit which has a large coke filtering out "almost" everything but DC, as the high pass side has a blocking cap, which is what feeds the SWiM.
So to answer "how can one use an AM21?", it would be to use a separate coax.


Well I might have to bite the bullet and go without OTA as my locals are covered by D* although you never now when a station might get dropped. I do have one unused run of coax going to each receiver location all going back to my central closet. I'm a bit loathe to split up my signal more than I have to---I assume it would probably be ok. Any comments you have on signal loss would be appreciated.

What do you mean by "control" in reference to the FSK signal. IOW, might that cause the transponder readings to zero out...I assume so otherwise you probably would not have mentioned it...

A couple of final "by the ways":

The receiver location that has been having the greatest problem is the furthest from the central closet. A rough estimation of the RG-6 run from the dish to the problem receiver is 75 feet; to the other rooms it is no more than 40-50 max.

When doing RBR and even unplug restarts I've found the status bar that creeps up from 0-100% will often abort way below 100% when the picture finally comes back. In the past, I think I recall the status bar going to 100% every time. Don't know if I have a mis-remembering of something there or might it be an important detail. :whatdidid


One HR21 with AM21 OTA (playroom)

One HR24-100 (great room)
One HR24-500 (Master BR) with AM21 OTA
SL5-SWM
two receivers with 1TB drives in external enclosures connected via esata.
Winegard hd-1080 UHF/hi-VHF antenna


#19 OFFLINE   David MacLeod

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 10:59 AM

wonder why the tech even looked at it with it being diplexed.
I run from ant to distribution amp, 2 lines out of that to 2 rooms with a splitter feeding 2 am21 and tv at each.
Dave MacLeod
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#20 OFFLINE   peters4n6

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 11:02 AM

wonder why the tech even looked at it with it being diplexed.
I run from ant to distribution amp, 2 lines out of that to 2 rooms with a splitter feeding 2 am21 and tv at each.


tech never looked at it. he just checked out my signal strengths at the dish one day. (BTW, when I click on the link to your setup I get an error that I don't have any privileges to see it...this happens on other's links...what gives...PM me if you know answer, thanks!)


One HR21 with AM21 OTA (playroom)

One HR24-100 (great room)
One HR24-500 (Master BR) with AM21 OTA
SL5-SWM
two receivers with 1TB drives in external enclosures connected via esata.
Winegard hd-1080 UHF/hi-VHF antenna





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