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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, looks like I'm finally moving into a new condo.

It's a gut rehab with 37 units.

MDU is in building.

It's a new install, 50% sold, no condo association yet. Looks like they have a 7 year contract with the developer. 1 receiver + Total Choice paid for as part of assessment.

I called to get info, looks like they installed older system, only 5 HD channels.

I have 2 HD directivos, 1 HR-20, 2 H20's.

As soon as logically possible I want to dump the HR-20 and the H-20's (and possibly the HR-10's) as soon as the new HDPC-20's come out.

They've quoted me $45 EACH to install my receivers +8/month admin fee.

I tried to see what it would cost to just hookup to their wiring and dish and they wouldn't even talk to me.

They also want me to convert my account. If I convert, I lose my grandfathered DNS locals from NY and LA.


Scenario 1:

I have a big honking S/SW facing terrace. Put my own Slimline dish and buy the swm hardware and run the wiring through the window or patio door. Leave everything the way it is for now. Use the wiring they put in to distribute it through the condo. Don't tell DTV I moved.

As soon as condo board is formed get on board and get system upgraded or get the cost down or get someone else in there.



Actually scenario 1 is the only one I'm looking towards at this point, since they are being such jerks about it. I don't have a problem paying a reasonable cost, but $200 to "install" my own equipment and $8/month so they can get a spiff off of my "new" account doesn't seem fair to me. I'd be willing to pay for the "downconverters" that they told me that they had to install.....



Any thoughts?
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
bobnielsen said:
That sounds like a MFH-1 installation. I'm surprised that a new MDU installation from scratch would not use MFH-2, which would give you all of the HD channels.
I was surprised too. I even talked to one of their techie guys and he said there was no plan to upgrade....

*sigh*
 

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Legend
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If you already have a southwest facing balcony, I'd just get your own dish and go for it. (WARNING: I have been told by a couple of coworkers that putting up a 5LNB dish with flat cabling to avoid holes will kill your HD signal.) The operator in my complex makes no mention of if there's a way to just lease the wires, and I'm sure if I ask regular customer service they'll either plead ignorance or just tell me "no." I'm not sure why operators are so big on converting accounts; I'd be happy to pay $10-$20/month just to lease the wires from the dish (they're already in my apartment) and NOT convert my account. I guess it's such a one-off scenario--most people probably treat it like cable with a cable box and such--that it's not worth their time to bother.

One other thing: My apartment (leased; might be different for owned) specifically prohibits connecting into their coax, so you might want to be cautious of that.

Other tip: the DirecTiVos don't understand SWM. (In case you didn't know; sounds like you might)
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
wesmills said:
If you already have a southwest facing balcony, I'd just get your own dish and go for it. (WARNING: I have been told by a couple of coworkers that putting up a 5LNB dish with flat cabling to avoid holes will kill your HD signal.) The operator in my complex makes no mention of if there's a way to just lease the wires, and I'm sure if I ask regular customer service they'll either plead ignorance or just tell me "no." I'm not sure why operators are so big on converting accounts; I'd be happy to pay $10-$20/month just to lease the wires from the dish (they're already in my apartment) and NOT convert my account. I guess it's such a one-off scenario--most people probably treat it like cable with a cable box and such--that it's not worth their time to bother.

One other thing: My apartment (leased; might be different for owned) specifically prohibits connecting into their coax, so you might want to be cautious of that.

Other tip: the DirecTiVos don't understand SWM. (In case you didn't know; sounds like you might)
Yeah, I'm the same way...don't mind paying them for the use of their dish. The coax I was talking about was the wiring inside the condo...legally I think that's mine...

From the wiring diagrams I've seen there are legacy ports on the swm8 or I can just run a 6x8 in parallel with the dish. If I'm wrong, please correct.

Looks like scenario one unless I can make nice with an installer in the building ;)
I guess I can see what a neighbor has and then there's always a midnight visit to the wiring closet :)

The flat coax cable I'm looking at is:

Flat Coaxial RG6 Cable Window/Door Satellite HDTV 3 GHz High Frequency White Flexible Coax RG-6 8" F to F Jumper Eagle Aspen Digital RV Camper Portable Satellite Dish TV Antenna Coax Cable Adapter, Part # 8FC-300LX-8

From what I can see this would take care of the HD part and has the frequency range needed.

I just wish the usb tuners for my media center PC were out....would make this a lot easier and I'd only have to run one wire for everything ....*sigh*.
 

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The flat cables work fine from a signal point of view - this idea that flat cable kills your HD is an installer "urban legend". However FYI DirecTV has apparently told its installers to stop using flat cable, because of some problem in one (or more?) installations where (as far as I can tell) a flat cable was damaged by the door sliding over it, caused a short and there was a fire.
 

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Legend
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MDU truly makes me laugh sometimes. A couple quick things here. You will need to convert your account over to their MDU account and to the PID of the building regardless in order to receive the TMU programming. If you don't then you will just continue to pay retail (unless you are coming from a building with a similar plan). A standard CSR with DirecTV will not be able to change this. Also you are not techncially eligible for the bulk rate if you have your own dish. So make sure you get that transfered first before you have the dish installed. You won't initially just lose those East/West HD channels, that is dependent on how they transfer it.

Remember that the MFH2 system only really came out in true quantity in Feb 2008.
So depending on when the system was intitially installed it may have been the best system available but obviously that has changed. If they refuse to upgrade the system look at other options once the board takes over. I believe the current legislation in Illinois allows you 6 months to void all contracts from the date the board officially takes effect.

Also if they have a stacked system you will need a conversion kit which will run about $300.00, if they have MFH1 figure a cost of $50 or so per tuner is about what they may charge.
 

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Legend
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Yes, you can run a DirecTiVo off the legacy ports, but if you have more than one, you'll want to run a 6x8 in parallel.

It is possible to buy the destackers "in the wild," but Solid Signal wants almost $200 for a two-output Sonora destacker; I'd check Craigslist first (I got mine, which I then run into a multiswitch just for 101W, for $85).

As for flat cables and HD, one instance I know of firsthand. The cable worked great when the window was open, but closed killed the HD satellites. Your mileage may vary, as always. :)

Regarding the midnight run to the wiring closet, I'd rather you hang around until you see one of their installer's vans parked in the parking lot, if that's how they do it. :D

(For me, I'm praying my complex keeps its MFH1 system running as long as possible...)
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Ok, finally got moved into my new building yesterday but no appt with MDU until the 6th of September.


I hooked up a HDdirectivo(HR10-250) to the internal wiring, and I can see the odd numbered transponders but it won't finish the guided setup. I have a SCD-4P5W that I picked p off off e-bay.

Is there something they still need to do in the closet or is there something I'm not doing in the setup correctly?


Thanks,

Kevin
 

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grizzly said:
bump...anybody
Sounds like wiring in closet not setup.
Too many variables to know without a Super Buddy meter testing your condo's signals.
Can't be much help with want you know so far.

Doctor j
 

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grizzly said:
Ok, finally got moved into my new building yesterday but no appt with MDU until the 6th of September.

I hooked up a HDdirectivo(HR10-250) to the internal wiring, and I can see the odd numbered transponders but it won't finish the guided setup. I have a SCD-4P5W that I picked p off off e-bay.

Is there something they still need to do in the closet or is there something I'm not doing in the setup correctly?

Thanks,

Kevin
Without knowing what the manufacturers of the stackers are in the closet it is not possible to give you a definite answer. Different manufacturers such as Sonora and NAS have different stacking frequencies. There are offsets. That is why a Sonora destacker will not work with a NAS stacker.

How many wires are run from the closet to the unit? If there are two then maybe they are running the odds on one cable and the evens on the other.

Slowhand
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Slowhand said:
Without knowing what the manufacturers of the stackers are in the closet it is not possible to give you a definite answer. Different manufacturers such as Sonora and NAS have different stacking frequencies. There are offsets. That is why a Sonora destacker will not work with a NAS stacker.

How many wires are run from the closet to the unit? If there are two then maybe they are running the odds on one cable and the evens on the other.

Slowhand
Ok, got a look in the closet (and took some pictures) and went to my local DTV source and picked up some sonora D575P destackers and I'm working :)

I have one more question about distribution....I have one wire coming in to my unit and going to a distributution box (none of them were hooked up to anything, just loose in the junction box) and one wire going to each of 4 rooms. I have a stack of destackers...is there a way to distribute(split) the signal to each of the 4 rooms and then split it again from there to use two of the D575Ps to provide signals to each of the tuners on a hr2x?

If there is, what kind of splitter do I need? (specs, model #s, freq ranges?).

Thanks,

Kevin
 

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Legend
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grizzly said:
I have one more question about distribution....I have one wire coming in to my unit and going to a distributution box (none of them were hooked up to anything, just loose in the junction box) and one wire going to each of 4 rooms. I have a stack of destackers...is there a way to distribute(split) the signal to each of the 4 rooms and then split it again from there to use two of the D575Ps to provide signals to each of the tuners on a hr2x?

If there is, what kind of splitter do I need? (specs, model #s, freq ranges?).
A wide band splitter should work here; that's what my apartment has in its little coax chamber of doom. Stacked signals (i.e. MFH1, like my complex also uses) can be split as normal. The "whole point" of a MDU setup is to have one cable running to each individual unit which can then be split as needed. However, you may wind up splitting the signal so much that it drops below the usable level for the receivers. If possible, I would see if your "local DTV source" can provide you with D575D units. These have two outputs and are designed for use with dual-input DVRs.

Note: On a D575/D575P/D575D you will not receive anything other than 101W. This means that the (very limited) HD content on the other sats will not be visible to you.
 

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Legend
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
wesmills said:
Note: On a D575/D575P/D575D you will not receive anything other than 101W. This means that the (very limited) HD content on the other sats will not be visible to you.
I knew about the limited HD content. I can't do anything about that until the condo association is formed and we can look at negating/renegotiation of the contract with the MDU to upgrade to an MFH2 or 3 system. I can at least feed my legacy systems (2 HD Directivos) in other rooms with this setup.

The plan is to put a dish using a sled/non-penetrating mount on my terrace and feed a wire through the patio door about 10 feet to feed 3 HR2Xs using a SWM8 and use the internal rgu6 wire in reverse to feed a HR2x in my computer room.

It's not the best of situations, but will work for now. Gotta have my DTV.

Thanks for the help.

Kevin
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
sattec said:
split yes, normal no, for MFH1 you need an lmx-2 splitter, not cheap.
Actually I just used a power passing skywalker 2 way splitter to split into two rooms and then another one at each of the ends to connect up two tuners and it seems to work just fine...

Kevin
 
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