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Local reception and the 942


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70 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 17 April 2006 - 06:48 PM

In the past few weeks my local CBS has taken about a 30 point dip in signal strength down to 61. I have a neighbor that has the Tivo HD unit from DirecTV and still gets about 96 signal strength. I have called the local station and they gave some lame excuse about squirrels chewing on cable lines and interfering with the transmission in my neighborhood.

Has anyone experienced a signal loss with their 942? Trying to rule out possible software release that could have caused this. My other local channels were never that strong, but their reception does not seem to be affected.

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#2 OFFLINE   kmcnamara

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Posted 17 April 2006 - 07:53 PM

Where in Texas are you?

Hopper w/ Sling, Hopper 2000, 1 Joey


#3 OFFLINE   lakebum431

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Posted 17 April 2006 - 08:42 PM

I have no idea about your location, but sometimes when the leaves come out in the Spring it can mess with OTA signals.

#4 OFFLINE   LtMunst

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Posted 18 April 2006 - 06:24 AM

I have no idea about your location, but sometimes when the leaves come out in the Spring it can mess with OTA signals.



Yup, I've found that with the change in seasons I always have to repoint my antenna.

#5 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 18 April 2006 - 01:14 PM

I am Wichita Falls, Texas. I spent about two hours on the roof last night working on repointing the antenna and I had it all over the place and the signal is not any better. I ended up changing over to local ABC and getting it zeroed in to pick it up again. The antenna is back where I had it.

#6 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 19 April 2006 - 03:56 PM

Update!!! I spoke to the engineer at the local station and he says he has tested all the euipment at the station and can't find anything wrong. They are now launching "a full interference investigation". Whatever that is. Makes me think they are giving me a line. Anyone been through anything like this?

#7 OFFLINE   agreer

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Posted 23 April 2006 - 02:45 PM

Update!!! I spoke to the engineer at the local station and he says he has tested all the euipment at the station and can't find anything wrong. They are now launching "a full interference investigation". Whatever that is. Makes me think they are giving me a line. Anyone been through anything like this?

Probably not "just a line" as the station pays huge money for the exclusive right to that frequency range inside that DMA, they want ANYONE willing to be able to watch (at least the ADs...) because they need as many eye-balls as possible to make the station worth the cost to opperate.

If some punk is messing arround in that range, or if (unlikely but possible) a HAM opperator has mis-configured something and is bleeding in, they will report it to the FCC and get what they paid for, the exclucivity of that range.

#8 OFFLINE   Gramps

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Posted 28 April 2006 - 04:39 PM

I live about 15 miles N of Wichita Falls and for the past couple of weeks I've seen the same problem with that same station. For me the NBC and CBS affiliate are nearly side by side and the same distance from me. One evening the CBS HD OTA became unwatchable (alternating between a frozen pixilated image and the yellow message that signal was lost) while NBC was perfect. What is a real puzzle is that I can take the RG9 cable and plug it directly into my HDTV and both channels are sharp and stable. On a scale of 1-100, NBC comes in at 89 (TV shows SNR 27dB AGC 18%); CBS comes in at 96 (SNR 30dB, AGC 16%). Move the same cable to the 942 and the 942 shows NBC's signal strength @ 72. I had tried to rescan the channels and the CBS affiliate is now invisible to the 942. It sure seems to me that the problem is in the 942 somehow, otherwise why do I get such a good signal when I move the same antenna to the TV?

#9 OFFLINE   sgt940

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Posted 28 April 2006 - 08:58 PM

In the past few weeks my local CBS has taken about a 30 point dip in signal strength down to 61. I have a neighbor that has the Tivo HD unit from DirecTV and still gets about 96 signal strength. I have called the local station and they gave some lame excuse about squirrels chewing on cable lines and interfering with the transmission in my neighborhood.

Has anyone experienced a signal loss with their 942? Trying to rule out possible software release that could have caused this. My other local channels were never that strong, but their reception does not seem to be affected.


I am in Denton and have a 622 and have the same 30 point drop across all OTA channels.

#10 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 28 April 2006 - 09:04 PM

I live about 15 miles N of Wichita Falls and for the past couple of weeks I've seen the same problem with that same station. For me the NBC and CBS affiliate are nearly side by side and the same distance from me. One evening the CBS HD OTA became unwatchable (alternating between a frozen pixilated image and the yellow message that signal was lost) while NBC was perfect. What is a real puzzle is that I can take the RG9 cable and plug it directly into my HDTV and both channels are sharp and stable. On a scale of 1-100, NBC comes in at 89 (TV shows SNR 27dB AGC 18%); CBS comes in at 96 (SNR 30dB, AGC 16%). Move the same cable to the 942 and the 942 shows NBC's signal strength @ 72. I had tried to rescan the channels and the CBS affiliate is now invisible to the 942. It sure seems to me that the problem is in the 942 somehow, otherwise why do I get such a good signal when I move the same antenna to the TV?


OK, Seeing now that I have somone close by experiencing the same issue from the same station, I did some further testing with my 811 receiver. I hooked it up in the same room as my 942 and used all the same connections. My CBS OTA HD signal was still hovering between 60 - 63 with nothing, but pixels. However, my NBC OTA just D was at 73 on my 942 and at 49 on my 811. I don't know what's involved with the tuners between OTA HDTV tuners and Dish OTA HD tuners, but there is a difference between an 811 and a 942. I have a friend that has DirecTivo HD box and he gets a solid 96 on CBS OTA HD now.

The station said it was limited to my side of town, but the more evidence I have makes me believe it is Dish Tuners.

#11 OFFLINE   sgt940

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Posted 29 April 2006 - 06:12 PM

OK, Seeing now that I have somone close by experiencing the same issue from the same station, I did some further testing with my 811 receiver. I hooked it up in the same room as my 942 and used all the same connections. My CBS OTA HD signal was still hovering between 60 - 63 with nothing, but pixels. However, my NBC OTA just D was at 73 on my 942 and at 49 on my 811. I don't know what's involved with the tuners between OTA HDTV tuners and Dish OTA HD tuners, but there is a difference between an 811 and a 942. I have a friend that has DirecTivo HD box and he gets a solid 96 on CBS OTA HD now.

The station said it was limited to my side of town, but the more evidence I have makes me believe it is Dish Tuners.


I just double checked my stations after the sun came out in Denton, I get 88 on 11, 93 on 8, 78 on 5, and 73 on 4. I have a high gain channel master amp with a fringe channel master antenna on the roof.

#12 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 29 April 2006 - 09:18 PM

I just double checked my stations after the sun came out in Denton, I get 88 on 11, 93 on 8, 78 on 5, and 73 on 4. I have a high gain channel master amp with a fringe channel master antenna on the roof.


Can you receive Wichita Falls channels in Denton or do yours come out of Dallas? I am wondering if it could be a combination of some kind of encoding the local WF CBS station does and the decoding by Dish branded receivers. Anyone with a hard core technical breakdown of what could be happening here feel free to jump in. I have yet to call Dish to report this.

#13 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 01 May 2006 - 03:49 PM

Update!! I called Dish after discusing this with gramps. They were not very helpful. They insist that it is nothing with their receiver. I checked the software update forum and someone was posting that they saw this same thing happen with l283 software update. I checked the release of the last major update and that was l285 on March 15th. About the time I started seeing this issue. Does anybody know how to reset or downgrade the software release? I also, called the local station and they are using a back channel to Dish to see if they can get anywhere. All I know is that I have not been able to watch CSI for weeks and it is really irritating. If anyone has any troubleshooting tips please share.

#14 OFFLINE   Gramps

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Posted 01 May 2006 - 06:22 PM

Further experimentation continues to point to the 942 as the culprit. Earlier I stated that after the problem surfaced, I get a perfectly good signal when I moved the OTA cable to my HDTV that has a built in HD tuner. Tonight I dug out my Hisense HDTV tuner (Walmart special) that I use in my RV and set it up next to the 942 and connected it to to the same OTA cable; the CBS affilitate comes in at nearly full scale on the on-screen signal strength display, picture perfect. Yet a channel scan with the 942 acts as if this station no longer exists. I wish I could recall with certainty when I first noticed this; I want to say it was about the time that the L2.85 update was applied. I agree with ebeeks that it would be a simple matter to prove this if we could downlevel the software. I also made visits to 3 separate DISH dealers in Wichita Falls and none had an HD receiver hooked up, so that didn't prove anything. At least I have an alternate way to watch CSI, just can't record it on the 942 until this gets resolved. For anyone that is interested, I am about 12.5 miles line-of-sight to the CBS affiliate's tower. ebeeks is a little over a mile on the other side of that same tower from me.

It doesn't make much sense that we both have a 942 and cannot receive the same channel. Without the troubleshooting he and I have done, it would be easy to point at the local affiliate, but since we can receive it perfectly on anything but a DISH receiver, where else can the problem be?

#15 OFFLINE   Jon Spackman

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Posted 01 May 2006 - 07:26 PM

Just be patient guys, I hear help is coming soon ;)

#16 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 09:06 AM

Just be patient guys, I hear help is coming soon ;)

Do tell

#17 OFFLINE   wingnut1

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 12:54 PM

Why don't you upgrade to the 622?

#18 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 02:47 PM

Why don't you upgrade to the 622?

I'm on the fence. I am waiting for gramps to get his and see if he has the problem. If it fixes his problems then I am all over it. I was not really excited about the additional channels that I would get. Also, was waiting for initial deployment issues with 622 to get resolved if there were any.

#19 OFFLINE   Gramps

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Posted 03 May 2006 - 02:53 PM

Why don't you upgrade to the 622?

They tell me my 622 "is in the mail", scheduled install date is 5/19 HOWEVER, I really don't expect this to fix the issue. Here's why: ebeeks has a 942 and an 811, both fail to receive this one local affiliate. Yesterday I stopped by a local DISH retailer and asked if he had any problems with the OTA locals. His response was that while he had a 942 at home, he didn't use it for the locals and that since HDTV is so new for this area, he had only sold a handful of receivers capable of receiving OTA HD. He did have a 211 that he hooked up to his antenna and ran the channel scan. All the local HD channels showed up, but the channel in question was only displaying a signal strength that bounced between 0 and 61, this alternated with the "lost signal" error panel. I went by the TV station and met with the chief engineer. He told me he has been in contact with a couple of other DISH subscribers complaining about this same problem. He then called his contact at DISH and we discussed the issue at some length on a conf call. The only things we can say for sure is that this one station is the only one we receive in this area that transmits in 1080i native, and the problem appeared on different DISH branded receivers after the sw updates in March. Since this doesn't seem to be an issue elsewhere as no one else is reporting the problem, the logical conclusion is there is some conflict with the local affiliate's signal/encoding and the DISH software. Hopefully they will work together to find a solution shortly now that it has been formally brought to DISH's attention. Since it worked before the sw update, that seems to be a good place to start looking.

#20 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 04 May 2006 - 08:50 AM

The problem may not be with the 942 at all. It is very possible that Dish may tell the local station that there is something wrong with the way they encode their signal.

I find it hard to believe that the issue is with the 942 since this is the only area of the country that is reporting a problem. Wichita Falls is ranked 144 out of the 210 DMA's in the country. Not exactly on the cutting edge.

#21 OFFLINE   Gramps

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Posted 04 May 2006 - 09:03 PM

Update on my end: 942 was updated to L2.86, last night I scanned local channels, but local CBS affiliate still does not exist. 622 came in today. I set it up, software level is L3.56. Scanned local channels, same results. Fortunately, I can still watch CSI in HD since my TV has a tuner built in. For someone without a TV tuner, the 622 is even more limiting since it does not have the ability to receive NTSC OTA. Thus no reception of CBS here at all. :(

#22 OFFLINE   ebeeks

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Posted 09 May 2006 - 12:56 PM

I spoke with the local station engineer and he is forwarding all our information to Dish to get this resolved. The season is almost over and still no HD. :(

#23 OFFLINE   Gramps

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Posted 11 May 2006 - 09:38 AM

Of the 4 digital affiliates we can receive off air, the one in question happens to have the strongest signal per the info provided by the ATSC tuner built into my TV. The station engineer loaned me several attenuators to try on the antenna cable to see if too much signal was the problem. It was not.

I called DISH today and spoke with a CSR who initially "could not help" me. Her position was that since the OTA stations were free, they were not DISH's responsibility. I reminded her that the OTA was a selling feature of the 942; particularly since on the Charlie Chat they offer this as a solution for folks who have an HDTV without a tuner. I push this and stated that as a long time DISH customer I wasn't happy with that response after spending $$$ to get this receiver. She then connected me to someone who appeared to be her supervisor and after discussing the problem with him, he put her back on the line to collect some info about my receiver and it is to be forwarded to engineering with no promise of any results.

#24 OFFLINE   RocketNJ

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Posted 11 May 2006 - 06:58 PM

Here's a thought.

Dish provides CBS-East HD on the satellite. Is it possible this is causing the conflict? Maybe that is why the OTA HD cannot display guide info?

Also here in NYC market my CBS shows in lower case while the other OTA HD channels show upper case.

Just a thought

#25 OFFLINE   William Millar

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Posted 11 May 2006 - 08:07 PM

Alright guys I live in Iowa Park, 13 miles North of Wichita Falls. I have a 411 receiver and a 6000 receiver, and I do not get channel 6 either. This problem started in the middle of March and I know 2 other people in Iowa Park which have the same problem. It's hard to believe it's the receiver as the 6000 has had no updates in many months and it does not receive the station any longer.

If you want to receive channel 6, unplug your outside antennae and take a piece of coax and just plug in the copper wire only to the back of your receiver then you will receive it, but you will not be able to receive any other of the stations. I feel since my 6000 has the problem I beleive it's either with the station or somebody has but a cellular phone tower in wichita falls which is interferring with the signal because I am using a channel master 4248 antennae and I can pick up NBC and CBS out of Dallas every evening, I also pick up Sherman, Tx, CBS. All these stations are broadcasting in 1080I so I feel that Channel 6 has a problem and they just can't pin point it, so try what I said with the coax and see if it works for you. I reported this problem in March on the AVS Wichita Falls forum, I am glad to hear that people are now saying something about it.



Bill




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