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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an HBO/HD Satellite question:

The last couple days my HBO HD signal (Channels 70 & 509) has been breaking up. I have the HD package and every other Hi-Def channel on there is fine, as well as my HD locals (which I get thru DTV).

I checked my connections and they were all fine. I called DTV customer service; the CSR had me reset the box, but the problem was still there. He then sent through a signal to unlock the Showtime package, to check THAT HD signal (channel 71); that was perfect as well. He then had me run a satellite strength check; all the transponders on 101 were in the mid to upper 70's. I then switched to satellite 110; I had three transponders active there (8, 10 & 12) and they were in the mid 70's.

The CSR then said “That is the problem; HBO HD comes off satellite 110 and from what you are telling me per transponders and signal strength, your dish is out of alignment. The only way to correct the problem is with a service call to realign your dish”.

Is this correct? As I said, every other channel I receive (including the new Showtime channels, HD and SD) is perfectly fine.

Thank you for your help.
 

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It is true that HBO HD and Showtime HD are beamed from the 110-deg W satellite ....
http://www.lyngsat.com/packages/directvusa110.html

But those signal readings are not really too low. They could perhaps be a bit higher. And if it was a dish alignment problem, then any channel from that satellite should be similarly affected.

What are your signal readings on the three transponders from the 110-deg satellite?
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
litzdog911 said:
It is true that HBO HD and Showtime HD are beamed from the 110-deg W satellite ....
http://www.lyngsat.com/packages/directvusa110.html

But those signal readings are not really too low. They could perhaps be a bit higher. And if it was a dish alignment problem, then any channel from that satellite should be similarly affected.

What are your signal readings on the three transponders from the 110-deg satellite?
#8 is 73, #10 is 70 and #12 is 71

And as I said, every other channel looks fine. It's just HBO HD that is freezing/pixilating.
 

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Hall Of Fame
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They are OK for an H20, arent' they? Don't they read about 20 points lower than an HR20?
 

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Éminence grise
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paulman182 said:
They are OK for an H20, arent' they? Don't they read about 20 points lower than an HR20?
Those are good levels--I am getting 58, 63 and 65 on the same transponders with my H20 and nothing is breaking up (I don't currently get HBO).
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
litzdog911 said:
Those levels are tad bit low, but should be OK. Are they steady or do they vary?
They are pretty much steady. All my readings off the various sats are as well. I don't get much fluctuation.
 

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paulman182 said:
They are OK for an H20, arent' they? Don't they read about 20 points lower than an HR20?
Not any more. A recent software download corrected the signal stregth meter inaccuracy, IIRC.
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well, I talked to one of the “Higher-Ups” in tech support at DirecTV this morning and he was totally baffled by the problem. He said he had never seen anything like this before.

One funny thing DID happen though. He said “So, I'm assuming we haven't had anyone out to your residence for quite a long time”. I replied “Well, of course the fellow was out here installing all the HD upgrade equipment (H20, 5LNB, etc.) about 5 weeks ago, but no, no one since”. There was a bit of a pause and he says “Well, a service call won't cost you anything then; any problems occurring within 90 days of the previous service are covered free of charge”.

I guess I wasn't aware of that, but it works for me. They're sending someone out Tuesday to look into it. I'll post the “solution” to the “problem” afterward.
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks to everyone for the responses and advice.

I DID have one thought, even before this problem came up: we originally had DTV installed back in 2003. The tech who hooked up the 5LNB and H20 used the same coax cable that the original setup had; should that have been changed out for higher, more up to date grade?

Just wondering.
 

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Three year old cable should work just fine. However, if there is a poorly installed connector, or moisture has gotten into the line someplace, or there is some other damage to the coax runs, it is possible that could contribute to your problem.

DirecTV specifies coax with solid copper center conductor for the 5-LNB dish, and I highly doubt that is what was previously installed, so from that perspective it should have been replaced (although I doubt many techs would do so).

Carl
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Here's an update on my saga:

As noted, I had talked to DirecTV and they told me they'd send someone out on Tuesday, October 24th, before noon to look at my problem.

My wife took the 24th off from work. No one showed or called all morning. Finally, about 12:30 she got a call saying the service person was running late, but would be there by 4:00 PM. Okay, stuff happens. Well, 4:00 comes and goes; by this time I was home from work and called to see what was going on; the woman I spoke with put me on hold to call the service tech; she came back and said he would be there shortly. Finally, about 7:45 the guy shows up. He determined that the problem was being caused by a bad LNB. Terrific! We have a solution. He then discovers he doesn't have any LNB's, so he can't repair the dish. He calls service up, tells them the problem and reschedules service for Thursday, the 26th, between noon and 4:00 PM. Okay, whatever.

So now it's MY turn to be at home and wait for the service call. I take a half day of vacation from MY job. Once again, 4:00 PM comes and goes. About 5:00 PM the phone rings; it's DTV service. They screwed something up in their service schedule and the service tech won't be out. Can they now come on SATURDAY morning?

What the hell? This is ridiculous. If there's a problem on Saturday (frankly, I'm pretty tempted to do so right now), I'm calling DTV up and saying "I don't care what I owe you in $$$ from a commitment standpoint, I'm canceling service and going to cable or Dish Network". Absurd.
 

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Could you at least wait until after Saturday when they hopefully fix your problem :)

We're curious to see if it's truly a defective LNB or not.

But on a more serious note, I don't think DirecTV, Dish or Cable Companies are much different when it comes to scheduling snafus with their techs and installers. Stuff happens. Switching to Dish or Cable won't change that situation.
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
litzdog911 said:
Could you at least wait until after Saturday when they hopefully fix your problem :)

We're curious to see if it's truly a defective LNB or not.

But on a more serious note, I don't think DirecTV, Dish or Cable Companies are much different when it comes to scheduling snafus with their techs and installers. Stuff happens. Switching to Dish or Cable won't change that situation.
I promise to stay with DirecTV...at least thru Saturday. ;)

Seriously, I called DTV and said "What the heck?". I got a credit on my bill and another four months free on the HD package. I realize these things happen with all the providers; just frustrating.

I hope it's the LNB; if not, they'll need to send in a "CSI" team to find out what's wrong. :)
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, the service tech was out yesterday. The dish alignment was fine, LNB's were fine, strength of signal was fine. He figured it was a problem with the H20 and/or B Band converter. DTV is sending out replacements tomorrow to arrive Wednesday. I'll try switching the converter first; if that fixes the problem I'll keep my current H20; if not, I'll swap out the receiver as well.

Stay tuned... :)
 

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Éminence grise
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You can take the B-Band converter out completely and it should work (if the receiver is o.k.) The converter won't actually be required until new satellites are in orbit next year (although it won't hurt to have the converter installed if it isn't defective).
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
bobnielsen said:
You can take the B-Band converter out completely and it should work (if the receiver is o.k.) The converter won't actually be required until new satellites are in orbit next year (although it won't hurt to have the converter installed if it isn't defective).
I removed the B Band converter; no change. Obviously that isn't the cause. I'll hook up the new receiver on Wednesday. If THAT doesn't do anything I'll call for an Exorcist. :bang

On a side note (sort of): shouldn't the technician who was out Saturday have known that the converter currently serves no critical purpose, and that we could have removed it right then, with no adverse effects, in case it WAS the cause of the problem I've been having? On each board I've been posting to, someone gave the same response as bobnielsen did above; why didn't the tech know that? :confused:
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Received the replacement H20 yesterday. Hooked it up, activated it...problem solved. HBO HD is back to just like looking out the window.

Odd that the receiver funked out on just one channel...but it appears that was the case.

:allthumbs
 
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