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SWM 8 or SWM 16 needed?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Installation/MDU Discussion' started by hornmdt, Jan 31, 2012.

  1. hornmdt

    hornmdt AllStar

    Sep 8, 2008
    I have the HR34 with the 5 tuners and 4 HD DVRs (HR20, HR21, and 2 HR23s). That is thirteen tuners total but if the SWM only sends one wire to the 5 tuners on the HR34 and the 2 tuners on the existng HD DVRs (I assume there is a splitter of some sort so each tuner input gets a wire on the existing DVRs) why does it not just use 5 ports on the SWM which would let me get by with a SWM 8 instead of a SWM 16?

    Also, with SWM I assume my DVRs will not automatically hunt an available tuner on one of my other HD DVRs somewhere in the house if I were to try to set 3 things to record at the DVR in the den for instance? If it would work that waay i would not need the HR34 but I don't think it works that way, right?

    Thank you.
  2. Scott Kocourek

    Scott Kocourek Well-Known Member

    Jun 13, 2009
    You need a SWiM-16, the HR34 and a HR on one leg and the other 3 HR's on the other leg.

    Your assumption on the searching for an available tuner between the HR's is correct, they will not.
  3. Drucifer

    Drucifer Well-Known Member

    Feb 12, 2009
    NY Hudson...
    Any H2x can direct a Recording to any DVR on the MRV Network. That is really the only MRV Network tool at present.
  4. trh

    trh This Space for Sale

    Nov 2, 2007
    NE FL
    Wrong assumption. There is only one coax going into each DVR -- no splitters involved.

    Make sure you only wire 8 tuners from each leg of the multiswitch -- don't put 9 tuners on one and 4 on the other one. It won't work.
  5. texasbrit

    texasbrit Well-Known Member

    Aug 9, 2006
    Each tuner uses one SWM channel (nothing to do with the number of connections). So your 13 tuners need an SWM16. The single connection to a DVR carries two SWM channels, and there is electronics in the DVR that separates out the two signals.
  6. Feb 1, 2012 #6 of 55

    hornmdt AllStar

    Sep 8, 2008
    I don't understand how the legacy DVRs with Sat In 1 and Sat In 2 coax connections (one for each tuner) can get by with just one coax going into, I assume, Sat In 1. Seems to me that would leave tuner 2 with no signal. When they came out with the HR20 years ago it is hard to believe that they built it so Sat In 1 could carry a signal to both tuners way before SWM had even been invented. What am I missing here?

    It sounds like there must be some sort of reverse splitter thing at the SWM multiswitch so you connect to 5 outputs/ports/channels) on it (one for each tuner) that goes into 1 output coax going to the HR34. Also sounds like you have to balance the outputs on the SWM multiswitch instead of loading up one "leg" (whatever a leg is) with a ton of tuners and leaving the other leg with hardly any. How many legs does a SWM 16 have? I'm guessing 2 with 8 ports/channels max each. So I'd want to put 6 tuners (going to 3 HR DVRs on 3 coaxes) on one leg and 7 (1 HR34 and 1 HR DVR on 2 coaxes) on the other, right?

    Is there anything I have to do to switch from unsupported MRV to supported once I'm using the SWM 16? Will it just automatically stop using my ethernet home network wiring and switch to communicate between boxes and start using the SWM coax? Does DECA come into play anywhere or can I get by without it since each box has its own ethernet wire from my switch for movie downloads, etc.?

    One last question - will a AM21 OTA receiver work with the HR34? I have a couple on my HR23s and would like to move one to the HR34 if it will work.

  7. Feb 1, 2012 #7 of 55

    azarby Hall Of Fame

    Dec 15, 2006
    You should just power off each box (should do that when installing the new switch). When you power them back up with the DECA adapters attached, they should be good to go.

    AM21 works fine with the HR34. I have 2 of them set up that way.
  8. Feb 1, 2012 #8 of 55

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

    Nov 16, 2005
    Legacy DVRs can't, or at least they would have to run with only one active tuner if they did.

    It would for a legacy DVR, or even a SWiM capable DVR if running in "legacy mode."

    The HR20's chipset was designed to support SWiM when it was built, however as with many other things in this business it was originally released to the public ahead of the firmware to enable it which followed later.

    But outside of maybe external signal stacking devices at no time was there ever an ability for the HR20 or any other DVR to support two tuners on a single cable in a legacy setup.

    Perhaps if you study the attached excerpts from one of the old DIRECTV training documents on SWiM will help you grasp the concept better. Even though the SWiM-16 module is not specifically mentioned in this somewhat dated document, it is just the functional equivalent of two SWiM-8s on one platform connected by a DECA crossover bridge.

    Note: The SWiM-5 mentioned is obsolete.

    If you do the work yourself it will still be listed as "unsupported" even if you use DECA. DIRECTV must do the installation for it to be changed to "supported."

    After the SWiM module is powered up and thereafter all the receivers are restarted it should, if all was installed correctly of course.

    You can get by fine for now without it. Just how fine for the future though is questionable since like on the new H25 DIRECTV may to be moving away from wired ethernet options on future receivers.

    As the previous poster said, yes, though apparently somewhat differently than with as previous receivers in allowing actual OTA scanning. See the thread here for instance.

  9. Feb 1, 2012 #9 of 55

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    "Generally" what I've been reading is you don't understand how SWiM works.
    Maybe the best way to look at it is as a pre-tuner that is added before the receivers. It receives all the SAT signals, and then selects what the receiver/tuner requests. There are nine "channels", one being for the guide data [common to all receivers] and another eight [one for each tuner] that carry the programs. The DVRs do have an internal circuit that connects both tuners, when in SWiM mode.
    Both the H20 & HR20 came out before SWiM, and back then SWiM was called FTM [frequency translation module].
  10. Diana C

    Diana C Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

    Mar 30, 2007
    New Jersey
    As VOS points out in his post above, each SWiM leg supports 9 channels, 1 for guide data and 8 for general purpose tuner support. A SWM 8 has 1 leg (internally split to two outlets), a SWM 16 has 2 legs, and a SWM 32 has 4 legs.

    Upon startup, the receiver negotiates with the SWM module to obtain a channel for each tuner (5 for the HR34, 2 for other DVRs, 1 for regular receivers). They are assigned on a first come, first served basis. Once the receiver has its channels, it then requests a specific transponder be mapped to that channel, depending upon the programming requested by the user.

    So, in effect, the SWM technology is doing exactly what signal stackers did for years, just with a bit more selectivity and smarts. Instead of frequency switching an entire bank of transponders, it does just one at a time.
  11. hornmdt

    hornmdt AllStar

    Sep 8, 2008
    Thanks for all the replies. I am having a Directv tech come to do my work but I'm trying to get up to speed because at this point I'm not sure that I don't know more than him, and as you can tell that's not much.

    He had to order the SWiM 16 and will come mid next week to do the work. But he tried telling me that I didn't need the HR34 if I had 4 DVRs because that was 8 tuners I had at my disposal and if I wanted to schedule 3 things to record at the same time it would use the 2 availiable tuners in my local DVR then hunt a free tuner somewhere in the house at another DVR to record my 3rd show. That's why I asked that question because as you guys said, it doesn't work that way.

    I'm still not sure if I need DECA to go to supported MRV from unsupported and he hasn't mentioned that I need it or that he will be doing that type of work and he wasn't even aware there was an unsupported version of MRV. I'm halfway afraid to even bring DECA up because I might get it even if I don't need it if I do bring it up. I'm really concerned about how I get from unsupported to supported MRV from both an installer's view and Directv's view. I also don't have a great feel that he understands this balancing the # of tuners between the 2 legs of the SWiM 16 as you guys have mentioned.

    I've always done all my work myself through the years so the loss of control to turn it over to DirecTV is just a little frightening. If I understood the SWiM and DECA technology I would continue to do it myself but I don't.

    One question, how do you turn a legacy box into a SWM capable box so you can only run one coax into SAT 1 In and still get both tuners functional?

  12. cabletech

    cabletech Legend

    Jan 20, 2011
    The only way to change a older legacy box into a swm capable one, is to call DTV and ask for a reciever upgrade. Then you can use the old box for a door block or save for SD in the rv.
  13. doctrsnoop

    doctrsnoop Godfather

    Nov 20, 2007
    Why so afraid of DECA? If they DECA you up for no-charge it's a good thing, it's a little better to get the traffic off the home network.

    You need DECA to get a supported MRV, not from a technological standpoint, but more from a policy standpoint more or less. "Supported" is a status in the computer. You could get all DECA'd up, get converted to supported status, personally revert to ethernet, and still be "Supported" in the computer and they would not know the difference. don't know why you would but you could.
  14. carl6

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

    Nov 15, 2005
    Seattle, WA
    The D12 is the only SD receiver, and the R16 and R22 are the SD DVRs that are SWM capable. Anything older/prior to those is not, and will never be, SWM capable.
  15. hornmdt

    hornmdt AllStar

    Sep 8, 2008
    This is my point. With my existing legacy boxes (HR20, HR21, 2 HR23s) that are still supported by Directv and require 2 input coaxes (one for each tuner going into Sat 1 input and Sat 2 input on the back of the box) how does that work with SWiM? Are there still 2 coaxes run from the SWiM 16 (I obviously already have the coax in place to do this) or are there just one of the coaxes used (from the new SWiM 16) that is then run through some sort of a 2 way splitter at the box to split the one wire solution into 2 coaxes (one for each input) since that is required to get both tuners active? I know I don't trash the DVRs so with this one wire solution I'm switching to with SWiM seems to me it has to work one of the two ways I just mentioned - correct?

    This is exactly what I want, to get the traffic off my home network. But if DECA is using my existing Ethernet how am i getting the traffic off my existing network? Not that i would want to but how would one switch back to using your home network after being switched to DECA? I think the answer to this question will help me really understand how DECA works and what it is doing for me.

    I'm not afraid of DECA, just didn't want the MRV to continue to use my home network Ethernet and my limited knowledge of DECA is that it takes your existing ethernet and runs it through the coax up to the box where it then breaks it back out and then lets you plug it back into the RJ-45 connection on the back of the box. Am I way off here? If it works like I think why does supported MRV need your existing ethernet that is connected to your home network to work? Since I already have the ethernet wiring in place at each box is that wire at the box then not used at all and just the DECA one used?

    Bottom line is I want supported MRV and to use it the way Diirectv designed it and not use my home network any longer because I just don't get the speed through the ethernet wiring that I want. I also want completely converted over to SWiM. If getting a SWiM 16 and DECA accomplishes these 2 things I'm cool with it and only have the few questions I just asked. I don't know whether to ask the Directv installer to also convert me to DECA or not since I'm not sure of what DECA even does.

  16. Davenlr

    Davenlr Geek til I die

    Sep 16, 2006
    You just hook one coax to the box, and the software handles the rest. Every one of your listed DVRs supports 1 coax SWM and all of them will require a DECA adapter to break out the networking which will plug into the ethernet port.
  17. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    These aren't really "legacy" boxes, though they're currently running in legacy mode.
    Each of these work with a SWiM, and with one coax connected to the SAT #1 input. The two tuners in the HRs are fed off the one coax.
    DECA/MRV doesn't need to be connected to your home network to work. Connecting it gives all of the receivers internet access.
  18. doctrsnoop

    doctrsnoop Godfather

    Nov 20, 2007
    Yes you are way off in your understanding of DECA.

    DECA itself needs NO preexisting network, think of it like the SWM is it's own router, and packet traffic goes out over the coax (which then either needs to be broken out with DECA adapters for any pre Hx-24 units, built - in for Hx24 and H25) MRV will work fine if you had nothing else in the house.

    The only reason to connect to your home network is to provide an Internet connection for any VideoOnDemand and the TV Apps.
  19. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Dec 9, 2006
    While this may help to get an idea of how DECA works, the SWiM really has nothing to do with it, as the DECA is doing the routing.
    SWiM is needed for only two reasons:

    1. To free up the frequencies DECA uses.
    2. To be able to use splitters, instead of switches, so the coax has a common path for DECA signals to travel on.
  20. hornmdt

    hornmdt AllStar

    Sep 8, 2008
    Yes, this exactly what I want. I want dvr to dvr traffic to go over the DECA, not my network but still have my receivers connected to my home Internet network for VOD, TV Apps, etc. Sounds like DECA gives me that if a RJ-45 connected to my switch is also plugged into it (in the room downstairs where everything comes into the house), it then hitches a ride via the coax to the dvr and then is broken back out and plugged into the RJ-45 plug-in of the receiver. My existing RJ-45 that is there today won't be used anymore. SWiM/DECA is smart enough to use DECA/SWiM for dvr to dvr traffic and my home network for anything needing the Internet. Right?

    The only question I would have is since I am now using my home network for MRV traffic how would the dvr know to switch over and start using the coax for dvr to dvr traffic since DECA is connected to my network for Internet access? I don't see why it would not try to seek out my network since it's connected that way today (which it could find since DECA would be connected to my network.) Does a reboot do it?


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