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· AllStar
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96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm in line for an upgrade to DTV's MPEG4 receiver, guessing an HR-21. It’s scheduled for install tomorrow, Wednesday, August 6.

I'm currently running an HR10-250 off a 3LNB dish with copper clad, steel core coax (quad shield). I've run across information today that suggests a run of solid copper core coax is required (or recommended?) for the new Slimline, 5LNB dishes to control voltage drops and switching issues.

Question: I currently have five lengths of the aforementioned cable leading to two different rooms in my house (one run is for OTA signals.) The longest run is <100 ft. in length (80 ft. is about the max). Will I need to replace the cabling with solid core runs or will the limited lengths required between the dish and receivers be a non-factor in regards to voltage drops?

Lastly, is it possible to verify that voltage drops and switching is not an issue prior to replacing all the runs? I've always purchased and installed my own equipment (including the current cabling that's less than two years old) and am not thrilled at the notion of having to replace the existing coax.

Will it work?

-Thank You!
 

· Hall Of Fame
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8,968 Posts
DirecTV forces their HSP installers to use nothing but solid copper cable, no matter how short the run. In reality, copper-clad steel is just fine for 100' runs, which would cover most installs. Only when you start getting to 125' and longer might you start having problems with voltage drop, and that's going to be extended if you use a powered multiswitch or locker. But most installs use unpowered WB68 switches, and DirecTV makes up for it by making their installers use cable that is 40% more expensive than necessary (for most installs).
 

· Godfather
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452 Posts
IIP said:
DirecTV makes up for it by making their installers use cable that is 40% more expensive than necessary (for most installs).
Here I was thinking our equipment was made by the lowest bidder.

The CCS cable should be just fine, especially since it's quad-shield. The only issue the installer should have will be replacing the connectors on the cable (it's required by d* on all work orders now).
 

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673 Posts
IIP said:
DirecTV forces their HSP installers to use nothing but solid copper cable, no matter how short the run. In reality, copper-clad steel is just fine for 100' runs, which would cover most installs. Only when you start getting to 125' and longer might you start having problems with voltage drop, and that's going to be extended if you use a powered multiswitch or locker. But most installs use unpowered WB68 switches, and DirecTV makes up for it by making their installers use cable that is 40% more expensive than necessary (for most installs).
I doubt cable we use is more expensive. It might be solid copper but quality is really bad. Any quad shield from a store even copper clad is much better in my opinion especially when it says its swept to 3 Gig.
 

· AllStar
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96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for all the replies.

Now that the Slimline's installed, I've got a couple questions (everything's operating fine BTW and I love the look of my new, black, HR21-200... nice box).

@IPP: Why would they have installed a multiswitch in an application where only two HD receivers require lines (two to each box, which is the case here)? The Slimline has four outs and in my situation, that's all that was required. Just guessing... has to do with possible customer added services sometime in the future i.e., additional receiver installs in other rooms.

@Ironwood: Thanks. That's exactly what my primary concern was regarding replacing my existing RG6 with Ironwood's (or any other contractor’s cable). When I'd first installed DTV at my home several years ago, I was planning on using existing runs of coax that the cable company had installed two years before. Upon inspection, the cable they'd run was quite weathered and worse, very heavily and deeply pitted along their entire lengths. They even had what appeared to be pin or nail punctures in the casing where careless tacking occurred. It had to have been reused coax lines from previous install(s). Although the cable I'd installed is CCS (not solid copper), I know it's quality cable and properly installed; I didn't want to take the chance of substandard wire replacing what I have which in the end, wasn‘t necessary. No knock on Ironwood’s cable quality, might have been fine. I just didn’t want to take the chance.

This boards a terrific resourse and with that said, have another question:

What's the primary difference between Sat's 99(c) and 99(s)?. I live in Northern California and according to a tech support rep at DTV, the C and S designations apply to areas of coverage with 99(c) being the sat. I'd want to concern myself with in terms of reception and signal strength readings I’m seeing on screen.

Can I disregard readings off of 99(s)?
 

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tweaked said:
Thanks for all the replies.

Now that the Slimline's installed, I've got a couple questions (everything's operating fine BTW and I love the look of my new, black, HR21-200... nice box).

@IPP: Why would they have installed a multiswitch in an application where only two HD receivers require lines (two to each box, which is the case here)? The Slimline has four outs and in my situation, that's all that was required. Just guessing... has to do with possible customer added services sometime in the future i.e., additional receiver installs in other rooms.

@Ironwood: Thanks. That's exactly what my primary concern was regarding replacing my existing RG6 with Ironwood's (or any other contractor's cable). When I'd first installed DTV at my home several years ago, I was planning on using existing runs of coax that the cable company had installed two years before. Upon inspection, the cable they'd run was quite weathered and worse, very heavily and deeply pitted along their entire lengths. They even had what appeared to be pin or nail punctures in the casing where careless tacking occurred. It had to have been reused coax lines from previous install(s). Although the cable I'd installed is CCS (not solid copper), I know it's quality cable and properly installed; I didn't want to take the chance of substandard wire replacing what I have which in the end, wasn't necessary. No knock on Ironwood's cable quality, might have been fine. I just didn't want to take the chance.

This boards a terrific resourse and with that said, have another question:

What's the primary difference between Sat's 99(c) and 99(s)?. I live in Northern California and according to a tech support rep at DTV, the C and S designations apply to areas of coverage with 99(c) being the sat. I'd want to concern myself with in terms of reception and signal strength readings I'm seeing on screen.

Can I disregard readings off of 99(s)?
Regarding multiswitch my quess would be: they either had it on the work order so they didnt want to "steal" equipment by not installing it, or they didnt have a ground block. In either case its nice to have extra ports available for expansion.

Weather wear and tear is exactly what I dont like about cable we get. It barely survives one summer in the desert. Gets all cracked. I am more comfortable with solid copper for my installs but for the long term stuff we get its unacceptable.

Regarding 99 sat we have no information so I would disregard.
 

· Hall Of Fame
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ironwood said:
I doubt cable we use is more expensive. It might be solid copper but quality is really bad. Any quad shield from a store even copper clad is much better in my opinion especially when it says its swept to 3 Gig.
Spoken like someone who doesn't have to buy their own cable... ;)

A 1000' box of Perfect-10 DirecTV approved 60% shield, single RG6 SCC currently costs $67.99 plus tax and shipping. That's just about as cheap as you'll find SCC cable anywhere.

By comparison, a box of CCS costs only $39.99 plus tax and shipping. That makes SCC 70% more expensive.

And since most techs in my area don't have a business account set up where they can buy their own cable directly, most are paying more like $80/box from the HSP.
 

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Sorry to hear that. I think what I meant is that cost of that cable is really cheap due to the fact that quiality is crappy. Thats doesnt prevent company from charging you as if it was a first grade product. They are selling a lemon. The only people who see it is technicians in the field, then again who are you gonna complain to?
 

· AllStar
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78 Posts
Isn't solid copper coax required to be used by installers? I think that it is even stated in Standard Professional Installation Guidelines. Local HSP here started using it sometime last year as a DTV requirement. They sell it for $60. @ 1000' which is at cost.
Solid copper is something I have been using on all my installs since being certified on DirecWay/HughesNet several years ago and DW required the use of solid copper.
 
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