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How often do you REALLY lose your signal?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by splendorlex, Jul 19, 2012.

  1. Jul 21, 2012 #61 of 103

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

    Nov 15, 2005
    Seattle, WA
    The reason is because your Tivo units are only using signal from 101 while the HR's are primarily using 99 and 103. The difference between Ka and Ku is significant when it comes to rain fade.

    I lost signal about a week ago due to a severe storm. My HD channels were gone completely, yet SD on a simple D11 receiver remained almost the entire time (I did have a very brief outage of those also, but not near as long as the HD).
  2. Jul 21, 2012 #62 of 103

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    Your Tivos are MPEG-2, so they're only getting the Ku signals, which are less affected by rainfade than the higher frequency Ka signals, used for MPEG-4 HD.
  3. Jul 21, 2012 #63 of 103

    Fateswarning Cool Member

    Jun 25, 2012
    I won't be up and running until Monday but my next door neighbor has had D* for two years and hasn't noticed any dropped signal.

    We live in San Diego so...
  4. Jul 21, 2012 #64 of 103

    tvropro AllStar

    Nov 3, 2010
    I loose signal every time we have a big rain storm roll through here. It will go out before the rain event when the dark clouds roll in. Sometimes it comes back when the rain starts to die down but if it picks up it goes back out. Sometimes the storm ends and its still out for a bit. Been like that since the day I got Direct. We had a massive storm roll through here that evening.

    Using a 90 cm dish peaked to the max helps a bit with moderate downpour but not all that much when the attenuation is high due to the cloud cover with, moisture and scatter of the signal due to it.

    What it really boils down to is where your located, what angle the storm comes in from and it's intensity.

    Ku and Ka bands were never designed for 100% rain fade free operation due to the frequency's. Ka (HD) is 3 times worse than ku (SD) with attenuation.

    Another thing most people don't know is the fec and the modulation that is being used plays a roll also. Direct use very little error correction (6/7) on the SD channels to try to stretch the bandwidth. On HD they use mpeg 4 8psk, it requires more signal than mpeg 2 does. Using ka and mpeg 4 are two strikes against reliability for HD. They would do better to use 3/4 fec on SD for the rain fade problem but then the picture would be worse than it is now since the data would be used for more error correction that would tolerate the loss of signal better . You can only cram so much data in a transponder it has to be used for one thing or another. Over compression has always been a problem with small dish DTH satellite providers.
  5. Jul 21, 2012 #65 of 103

    Herdfan Well-Known Member

    Mar 18, 2006
    Rarely do I lose signal. It takes an orange/red/purple rain event either over me or slightly to the SW for it to happen. But my signals are dead on with most over 95.

    Now here is the funny thing. Next door neighbor has a son who is a DirecTV installer. Husband wants DirecTV, but wife is so afraid of rain fade. She has to be able to watch TV before bed. Husband travels a lot, so he gave up trying so they have cable.

    Backup to last month's Derecho storm. I had TV back as soon as the generator was up and running. She was without cable for 4 days AFTER the power came back on so a total of 11 days. See why I am willing to deal with a little rain fade.
  6. Jul 21, 2012 #66 of 103

    EdL Mentor

    Sep 1, 2007
    Bellevue/Omaha, NE - For 10 to 30 minutes whenever there is a thunder storm, which can be everyday in the spring. The snows not the problem, I had the dish installed on a pole so I can just brush the build up off.
  7. Jul 21, 2012 #67 of 103

    kevinwmsn Hall Of Fame

    Aug 19, 2006
    I've had D* since 2006, and it usually holds up well till the summer thunderstorms hit. I have lost signal every day for the past 6 days. I'm in the raining season, while most of the country is in a drought. Before SWM it would stay out longer. The key is to have a backup plan, be sure to check SD version of channel, SD is better than nothing at all, or OTA. I have UPS on my DVRs to handle the quick power blips that is more annoying, but the UPS avoids 10 min reboots of the boxes. Anyone living on the gulf coast will tell you will go down for a few minutes to 15 min vs being down hours/days at a time with cable. There were plenty of upset cable subsribers that were mad when their cable went out during the national championship game and there wasn't any weather problems.
  8. Jul 21, 2012 #68 of 103

    tulanejosh Godfather

    May 23, 2008
    only in very heavy storms. And generally - I don't even notice because we watch so much dvr content and so few things live. I do have an OTA hooked up to the tv just in case we need to get some info about a particularly severe set of thunderstorms, but honestly never use it. Internet weather will do just fine in that instance.
  9. Jul 22, 2012 #69 of 103

    jimbo56 Legend

    Nov 13, 2007
    In Buffalo, with a well-peaked dish, I only lost signal a few times a year during rainstorms, usually only lasting a couple of minutes or so. Heavy snow accumulating on the dish would cause signal loss, but the dish is located low enough where I could just brush it off easily.

    Signal loss is a virtual non-factor in deciding whether or not to sign up for DirecTV, regardless of what the cable companies try to tell you
  10. Jul 22, 2012 #70 of 103

    HobbyTalk Hall Of Fame

    Jul 14, 2007
  11. Jul 22, 2012 #71 of 103

    Earguy Cool Member

    May 14, 2012
    I got DirecTV in March, with a direct line of sight to the sky. I get rain fade EVERY time it rains, and often when it's threatening to rain. It's not what I was promised when I subscribed.
  12. Jul 22, 2012 #72 of 103

    SPACEMAKER Freethinker

    Dec 11, 2007
    Mason, MI
    Sound like an alignment issue.
  13. Jul 22, 2012 #73 of 103

    Guesst925XTU Legend

    Jan 28, 2004
    About 10 - 20 times per year but most of those times it is for less than three minutes.

    Last time I got "searching for satellite signal" for longer than three minutes was during the recent derecho. (We got wind gusts in excess of 70mph and a rainfall rate of about 2 inches per hour for several hours.) The DirecTV signal was in-and-out all night. Comcast was out on my street for four days as a result of this storm (trees took out some wires).
  14. Jul 22, 2012 #74 of 103

    hasan Well-Known Member

    Sep 22, 2006
    Ogden, IA
    There is something very wrong with your system, probably alignment of the dish. In the midwest, where we get strong (and usually frequent, but not this year) thunderstorms to the south of us, we will have short (5 or so minutes, sometimes 10) outages associated with these thunderstorms. Rain in the immediate location of the dish never produces signal loss here. It has to be line of sight between the dish and the sat itself (elevation approximately 40 degrees), and contain a ton of water (red to orange on the radar). Blue or green on the radar does not result in signal loss.

    If you are losing signal when it is merely raining on you, you have other problems. Either the alignment is awful, or you have bad connections. In any case, something is killing the signal and what you report is not normal. You need a truck roll.
  15. Jul 22, 2012 #75 of 103

    armophob Difficulty Concen........

    Nov 13, 2006
    Fort Pierce, FL
    I get a signal loss during strong storm fronts that come across daily sometimes in the summer in Florida. But it is rare that I get a blank part in a recording due to an interruption.
    But I also do not record or watch daytime tv..
  16. Jul 22, 2012 #76 of 103

    JcT21 Legend

    Nov 29, 2004
    HD goes out when a strong storm comes through, but its never over a minute or two. however the SD is rarely ever out. when the HD is out, SD has always worked just fine. the only time i recall SD being out was when i had a few inches of snow on my dish last winter. but complete loss of signal, both HD & SD wont even total 20 minutes a year.
  17. Jul 22, 2012 #77 of 103

    NR4P Dad

    Jan 15, 2007
    Sunny Florida
    3x today it went out on ESPN while Watching the British Open.

    First 2 times the SD feed hung in there but the third time lost both feeds when Adam Scott was putting on the 18th. Just as he lined up the putt, lost the HD and SD feeds. By the time it came back, he had missed it and lost the tourney. Worst timing possible.

    Very disturbing....

    BTW these were very quick dense squalls. During good weather mid-90 sat readings on 99 and 103 national feeds.
  18. Jul 22, 2012 #78 of 103

    TXD16 Icon

    Oct 29, 2008
    A very accurate description and probably why SE Texas may very well lead the nation in purchases of AM21s! ;)

    As you have discovered, in this part of the country, UPSs are more of a necessity than an option.
  19. Jul 22, 2012 #79 of 103

    Earguy Cool Member

    May 14, 2012
    But in good weather my signals are good. Will a call accomplish anything?
  20. Jul 22, 2012 #80 of 103
    Tom Robertson

    Tom Robertson Lifetime Achiever DBSTalk Club

    Nov 15, 2005
    Without a dish heater, I can lose signal once or twice in the early and late winter if we get a sloppy ice/snow storm.


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