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Signal Strength

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by HDJulie, Dec 30, 2011.

  1. HDJulie

    HDJulie Icon DBSTalk Club

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    I'm having a problem with an HR20 that has an external drive & thought it was the DECA unit so I swapped the one on the HR20 with the one on the HR22. I still had a problem with recordings on the HR20's external drive & went to watch a recorded show on the actual TV. Not only is the recording bad, but live tv is also bad -- the picture & sound just stop for a few seconds every few minutes. I was checking the signal strength & I have some 0's on 101 & a couple of low numbers. However, I don't know what is normal. I'd like to post the matrix of the signal strength numbers so one of you gurus can help me determine the issue. I'd like to do that for a couple of the DVR's. Is it ok to do it here & if so, do I need to post the signal strength from every tuner & satellite. I'm not currently having any problem with the other DVR's.
     
  2. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Post what you have and if it's the same on both tuners, there isn't any need for the second.
     
  3. jodyguercio

    jodyguercio Active Member

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    There is a template around here somewhere that is easy to use..... but yes posting your strengths is a good starting point.
     
  4. HDJulie

    HDJulie Icon DBSTalk Club

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    Let's start with 101. This is on an HR20 & an HR22. Both tuners are about the same:

    HR20
    101
    96 0 0 97 95 97 95 0
    0 96 0 0 96 96 98 0
    95 0 96 73 95 0 95 98
    96 0 96 0 98 99 95 99

    HR22
    101
    97 95 96 97 96 98 97 99
    96 97 97 0 97 99 95 99
    96 0 97 76 96 99 96 99
    96 0 98 0 99 99 97 99

    The numbers on the HR20 first started out with all 90's but then dropped to 0 after a minute.
     
  5. jodyguercio

    jodyguercio Active Member

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    They look good, have you checked all your connections inside and outside for snug fit or corrosion?
     
  6. HDJulie

    HDJulie Icon DBSTalk Club

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    They all look good for the HR20 which has 0 on several more than the HR22 has? And so far, the only one with a problem is the HR20. None of the other 3 DVR's or the other receiver have a problem.
     
  7. carl6

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

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    Your HR20 appears to have a problem of some type. The zeros you see on the HR22 are spot beams, so not to worry. But where the HR22 has a good number and the HR20 has a zero, you have some type of problem.

    First thing to try is remove then re-connect the coax from the HR20. Make sure the fittings on the end of the coax are on solid, and that when reconnected they are installed firmly to the connector on the HR20. If your lines go to wall plates, disconnect, check, and reconnect those.

    Tell us more about your installation. How many DVRs and receivers do you have total? Do you know if you have SWiM or conventional?

    One way to narrow down the problem would be to swap the two DVRs completely and see if the problem stays with the HR20, or stays with the room.
     
  8. carl6

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

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    You have FOUR DVRs and another receiver? That might be your problem right there, too many tuners. How is everything hooked up? Do you have multiswitch or SWM?

    Edit: It also might not be your problem if you have the correct setup to support 9 tuners.
     
  9. HDJulie

    HDJulie Icon DBSTalk Club

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    I have 5 receivers total -- 4 DVR's & one receiver. All are HD. We are on SWM with a SWM16 & have the DECA supported MRV. I just swapped the DECA from the HR20 to the HR22 & so I already know the cable going to the HR20 is secure. I will check the connector from the wall. I can switch out the HR20 with the H24 to see what happens. It doesn't need to be two DVR's swapped, right?

    I checked the wall connection & tightend it a little but that didn't change anything. I'm going to bring the H24 in that room to see what the signal looks like for it there.
     
  10. HDJulie

    HDJulie Icon DBSTalk Club

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    So, moved the H24 & the signal strengths are good on it. I suppose to be a complete test, I need to move the HR20 to the other room & verify the strength is still bad in the new room.

    Moved the HR20 & although the numbers were better, some that are not spotbeams still went to 0 after a few minutes. I've got a bunch of recordings on it so will have to make sure not to record anything new & then watch what we have before calling about a replacement.
     
  11. TomCat

    TomCat Broadcast Engineer

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    There is only one fly in the ointment here, which is that a test on SD transponders (for DTV that means SD signals on Ku transponders on a Ku satellite) can still show high or acceptable numbers even when the readings for HD (and those signals are on Ka transponders) may not.

    IOW, if your dish is tuned perfectly for SD, HD will fall in line. If your dish is mistuned for SD, HD won't be good either and probably will be worse. But here's the big one: if you have acceptable numbers on SD you still may not be tuned in well enough to have acceptable numbers on HD, because the tuning for Ka (HD) is much more precise, and there is less tolerance for error. That somewhat invalidates a test on 101, because it is Ku and does not tell you how mistuned HD (Ka) can be. You could be mistuned and still get SD and still have good numbers for SD, but HD can still be bad because there is less tolerance in the tuning; the focal points for Ku are much larger than those for Ka, so you can be off a bit and still be in the ballpark enough for it not to matter for SD, but it still may indeed matter for HD.

    Post the numbers for a HD Ka sat. (What are they these days, 103 and 99?). That will tell you what it really going on with how well tuned in your antenna is. And if you live in a market with HD locals on spotbeam (Little Rock probably qualifies) You should have at least one or two transponders that read 96-100 (100 if you are at population center, and 96 if you are a few dozen miles or more off center). You can ignore all of the other numbers even though some of them may represent CONUS HD, but at least one (your local spot beam for HD) should be right up there.

    BTW, when you tune to a sat to test signals, the transponders don't all pop in at once. The tuner in your STB can only tune one channel at a time, so it has to check these signals in serial order, which takes a while. You will see the old numbers get replaced one-by-one with the true new readings after a minute or two, but the original numbers may at the start default to what it was in a previous reading of a previous sat, so won't be accurate until enough time has passed for the STB to poll all of the different channels. This is probably why you are seeing some high (false) readings jump to lower (true) readings.
     
  12. HDJulie

    HDJulie Icon DBSTalk Club

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    Huh, I didn't know that about the numbers possibly populating with last readings but I had noticed that some of them updated after a while. I'll check the 103 & 99 readings later today, or tomorrow.
     
  13. carl6

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

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    I agree that testing only SD transponders does not indicate whether or not HD alignment is good. However the manner in which SD transponder indications are changing/failing, and the fact that it is only seen on the one unit, do suggest the problem is in that one unit.

    A check of both 99c and 103c would indicate if the problem is also manifesting itself on HD, and I suspect that one unit will probably see issues there as well.
     
  14. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I've never seen that.
    When you first tune to a SAT, all the TPs are zero. As it checks they will populate, and as it sweeps through them again, you will see them update, but these aren't being displayed from another SAT.

    Do check your 103c and 99c SATs as these are narrower beams and do show how well the dish is aligned [much better than SD].
     
  15. HDJulie

    HDJulie Icon DBSTalk Club

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    The HR20 seems to be working ok now. However, I checked the 99c & 103ca, 103cb signals on it & the HR22 & this is what I got:

    HR20
    99c
    88 93 87 95 85 89 85 92
    82 89 85 89 86 89

    HR22
    99c
    88 94 88 95 84 91 85 92
    82 89 84 89 87 89

    The 103ca & 103cb numbers were all in the 90's for both the HR20 & HR22.

    The HR20's 101 signal strengths are all in the 90's now. I'm still suspicious of the box & won't record anything new on it for awhile & will check it periodically.

    Are the 80's signal strengths on the other SATs problematic?
     
  16. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    No, but I wouldn't be happy with seventies.
     
  17. HDJulie

    HDJulie Icon DBSTalk Club

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    So 80's are ok, but if they drop to the 70's the dish would need to be checked?
     
  18. P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    If it will be no charge, I would go for the call/visit.
     
  19. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    80s aren't uncommon on all the SWiM systems I've had out here. The dish is aligned very well too [I've done it several times, with a few different SWiMs/LNBs, etc.]
     
  20. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    When your levels are above 70 it's hard to get a service call.
     

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