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How far can SWM8 be from dish?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Connected Home' started by ejhuzy, Nov 15, 2010.

  1. ejhuzy

    ejhuzy Legend

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    I'm in the process of planning a WHDVR upgrade and will probably need a SWM8 (to get the legacy ports for my SD Tivo).

    How far can the SWM8 be from dish? I've seen 40' on the web, but is that a hard limit or just a suggestion? My current 6x8 multi-switch is about 80' from the dish. I'd like to put the SWM8 in place of the 6x8.
     
  2. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    80' has been used before.
    40' is the preferred max, because the loss between the dish and the SWiM can impact the output of the SWiM.
     
  3. lugnutathome

    lugnutathome Hall Of Fame

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    I'm 150 feet out on mine but I've a slope equalizer, signal amplifier, and a polarity locker in line to compensate for signal loss and maintain proper signal slope. Likely overkill for your set up.

    You might be better served getting the dish with the SWM8 aboard it and do your splitter, PI where your existing multiswitch resides.

    Or Try the SWM8 and see how it plays.

    Don "plug it in and watch it fizz" Bolton

     
  4. BattleZone

    BattleZone Hall Of Fame

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    I'm running a SWM16 on 250' of copper-clad steel, feeding 18 receivers (2 from the legacy ports), with many of the 16 on the SWM being another 150' away. DirecTV's guidelines are very conservative, because they want to ensure there are no problems, but in reality, the systems are pretty robust.
     
  5. Richierich

    Richierich Hall Of Fame

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    Wow, with all of that Setup NASA could probably Track the Space Shuttle from your house!!! Do you work for the CIA??? :lol:
     
  6. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    We've been through this before, so for others:
    The SWiM attenuates inputs above -30 dBm, and amplifies those above -45 dBm, so the output stays at -30 dBm. After they drop below -45 dBm, the output starts dropping to the receivers.
    40' would be about -4 dB to the SWiM.
    100' would be about -10 dB.
    250' would be about -24 dB. "What does this mean"? This is already into the gain of the SWiM for a clear day and almost any rain or clouds will cause the receivers to start to receive lower levels, as there is only maybe 6 dB of gain left.
    If it rains where you are, keep the cable lengths as short as you can.
    DirecTV did design these to work within a usable range, but 250' isn't it.
     
  7. lugnutathome

    lugnutathome Hall Of Fame

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    I could tell you but then oh ummm:rolleyes:

    My home is over 5,200 sq ft but only about 1200 of that is on a second story and it is only 25 ft wide. Tall walkspace underneath the central section, garage under the north end. Looks like an apartment complex from outside.

    From the north kitchen/dining area (and video game room) the hall passes 4 guest bedrooms. This hall we call the green mile:) That drops into vast full width room "Field of Dreams" thats 43 ft deep open to Office Space and the Entry hall adding another 22 ft to the depth. My master bedroom "Sleepy Hollow" is 736 sq ft not counting the walk in closet, bath, or workout rooms adjacent to it.

    The house has 2 full kitchen and dining areas, large mud room laundry area, sewing room, butler's pantry, small living area adjacent to the south dining hall. It's just heaven for a home and I feel so fortunate to have such a place... (we'd raised 3 kids in a 1450 sq ft home and needed the real estate now for spouses and grandkids)

    When I bought the place in Feb 05 I contracted for installation of coax and cat5e networks from a low voltage electrical shop and the high point facing south for the dish takes 150 ft of coax down to the head end they set up in the walkspace. Workout room's line is 191 ft from the multiswitch.

    Pretty much figured from the get go that a DTV installer would be royally screwed setting up the infrastructure and I wanted it solid. Its cost a lot to initially install and then reconfigure for wideband service 2 years later (had to split off terrestrial to its own network), and again for SWM conversion 2 more years later.

    It means the DTV installers just aim the dish and verify the issues I've already isolated and communicated. It's scope is really a commercial install but I'm a residential customer. Caught in the middle. It can be frustrating and it can be expensive but I live in paradise so that is just part of the fee for doing so.

    Anyhow I've too much wire strung out for the limited gain on a 2 SWM output SWM16 and I've a hardwired network in place alongside the coax drops so I run MRV (OK WHDVR) off dual SWM 8s that offer 4 outputs using my Ethernet and REALLY hope DTV doesn't outlaw Ethernet till they can feed my infrastructure reliably with their technology. Likely I'll always be on that commercial/residential edge though.

    Everything is big *real* big. Don't get me started about the costs of re roofing or painting:nono2:

    No CIA, just a DBA/Application Engineer at Columbia Sportswear CO for the past 17 years.

    Don "lucky to live in paradise" Bolton

     
  8. matt

    matt New Member

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    :eek2:
     
  9. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Bet it rains "just a bit" in Woodburn, OR too, and you don't suffer much from raindfade either.

    Build a marginal system and "guess what", you get marginal results.
     
  10. lugnutathome

    lugnutathome Hall Of Fame

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    Rain? Just a wee bit yep. I don't have a mud room for nothing:grin: 3 dogs, surrounded by over 1,000 acres of working farmland yeah mud, lots of mud.

    And no rain fade since I had the SWM conversion even though we've had some killer downpours from time to time.:D

    Of course come summer I get "bird fade" some afternoons as the adjacent cherry farmer uses predatory bird sounds on a loop to keep the flocks out of his crops.

    My high roof makes for a great regroup landing site. Sometimes it sounds like the replicators from Stargate SG1 are on my roof:eek2: Then some sound and the rustle of wings, darkness falls over one side of the house as the flock departs.

    They get in front of the dish from time to time and I get these momentary wipes in signal but they don't linger.:)

    Don "fun to sneak out, clap my hands and watch" Bolton

     
  11. BattleZone

    BattleZone Hall Of Fame

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    I agree with you completely, and understand exactly what you're saying. Also, California isn't Florida or Ohio, so our storms usually aren't like those in other places. But having said that, we recently had a pretty good-sized storm, the first of the season, and had no problems with the system in question nor others that are "pushing it" compared to the published specs.

    Of course, minimizing connection points and properly installing connectors and things like that certainly play a big part when you are exceeding the specs. You can't be sloppy and careless and do what we do.

    There are solutions (amps) in case we have issues, but we've kind of figured out what the real thresholds really are, and have virtually no problems. Obviously, YMMV.
     
  12. Kevin F

    Kevin F Hall Of Fame

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    I don't mean to be a forum stalker, but wow, thats impressive.

    Edited to say forum stalker because I realize it sounded a little weird at first hahah sorry
     
  13. The Merg

    The Merg 1*

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    Just keep in mind that with the WHDVR Upgrade, DirecTV is going to want to use a SWiM-LNB and swap out the Tivo's for R16's. It might take a bit of convincing the CSR to put the SWiM-8 as a line item on your order.

    - Merg
     
  14. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I've read enough of your posts to know you do a quality job, "but" to post to the unknowing that 250' between a dish/LNB and any SWiM is a workable solution, just doesn't seem correct to me.
    What most aren't going to know is the system reserve power that is "useful" for weather.
    I don't think anybody needs to worry about the difference between a 4 dB loss and 10 dB, but the difference between a 4 dB and a 24 dB loss IS something important.
     
  15. lugnutathome

    lugnutathome Hall Of Fame

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    I got it pre edit.:grin:

    Thanks! I really do feel fortunate to be here. Walking down the green Mile from the game room (Vegas) out into the Field of Dreams always me think that.

    Don "time to watch some TV" Bolton

     
  16. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    Unless it's just phrased incorrectly, how do you run MRV off two SWM-8 modules' dual outputs by using ethernet? :confused:
     
  17. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    IIRC in think BattleZone once stated on another thread that DirecTV has a pretty much no compromise policy on handing out the SWM-8 modules nowadays. That they are only to be reserved for customers with SWM installs (for 8 or less tuners of course) needing both a SlimLine and the International (95W) dish.

    But does DirecTV make exceptions to this for situations involving extensive coax runs from the LNB to the receiver(s)?
     
  18. lugnutathome

    lugnutathome Hall Of Fame

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    Phrasing is off a bit. I have dual cascaded SWM8s to support the sat signal distribution and my receivers are WHDVR enabled via a hardwired LAN.

    I had been running MRV off my LAN while using a Spaun 12 port powered wide band multiswitch but was wanting to add another DVR so I upped to the dual SWM8s. This had a nice side effect in that it enhanced my picture images noticeably in addition to adding 4 more tuner capability on my existing wiring infrastructure.

    So technically my dual SWM8s have no bearing on the WHDVR traffic itself.

    My terrestrial coax network, satellite coax network, cat5e network, phone line distribution, and security system all originate at the same point and all the services are available in each room at the same wall plates. Very professional, easy to work on and swap out pieces and scalable beyond 16 tuners if I get that obsessive...:sure:

    The SWM8 units have a SWM1 and SWM2 outputs and both have the same auto adjusting gain levels. A SWM16 in concept uses these second ports to mate the 2 SWM8s leaving only 2 SWM1 adjustable gain ports available to support the infrastructure. (I'm sure I've gone technically off the mark on that describe but the SWM16 only has 2 SWM auto gain service ports)

    With 12 drops and a number of very long runs, (191, 184, 146, 2 at 85, etc) ft in length spreading the load across 4 auto gain ports ensures the SWM8 as a whole is not straining at full capacity on any port giving me available gain boost for weather variants.

    Technically speaking I can run them on just 2 ports using 8 way splitters (I've 9 receivers) but the line loss to the farthest receiver shows it to be below required spec.

    I've also some issues with vintage HR20-700s that mean they can reside only on 1 of the 2 switches and function. These are located where they need to be to preclude somebody from blocking their top cooling vents. Somewhat limits the load per SWM8 unit. This particular issue seems to limited to my infrastructure and I like the OTA tuners so...

    Don "it's not always been a bed of roses" Bolton
     
  19. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    This is kind of generic as for any one setup these will vary slightly, but it should give you a good "rule of thumb" that should help:

    SWiM losses.PNG
     
  20. The Merg

    The Merg 1*

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    That was kinda my point. While it is policy to only use SWiM-LNB to MRV upgrades, there are always exceptions and you might be able to persuade a CSR that you are one of them. :)

    - Merg
     

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