Multiple TVs and D* STBs in one room w/ only one coax port? Possible SWM questions. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 23 Old 10-29-2012, 02:52 PM - Thread Starter
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So I would like to (in the future), have 2 additional TV's hooked up in my living room. Maybe multiple football games, or play xbox and watch football, whatever.

There is only one Coax outlet in that room. Would I run a 4 way splitter and just send one coax to each of the three cable/satellite boxes in the room and then you just have a remote for each box and it's all good?
I know there is a splitter in the cable box outside forking the incoming cable connection to all the rooms, would there be a big chance of a signal loss issue?

(I realize having the same model TVs may create another issue, researching that one still).


Option B, just run one cable box and an HDMI splitter from the box and I would have the same show on all 3 tvs ... would only be good at that point for video games while watching TV.
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post #2 of 23 Old 10-30-2012, 04:43 AM
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The real issue with multiple devices in the same room are the remote control codes overlapping the devices. Especially if there are more than one of the same device or from the same manufacture.
You mention cable TV and satellite. Which is it, or do you have both since they are not the same horse?

Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way.
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post #3 of 23 Old 10-30-2012, 06:11 PM
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Yes, you can use a 4-Way splitter to feed four devices in the same room, although
it will result in more than 7.5 dB of signal loss to each device. If this is a problem, you
should use an Amplified Splitter (aka "Cable Drop Amp") which must have a RETURN
path for the cable box to headend communications, so make sure it is designed for
Cable applications.

FYI: Some Cable Boxes will tell you the signal levels if you know how to access their
Diagnostic Menu. Acceptable signal levels for QAM256 are between -12 & +15 dBmV.
However the number that is even more important is whether CNR (aka C/N or SNR)
is 33 dB or greater....and 33 dB would be marginal...
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post #4 of 23 Old 10-30-2012, 09:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

Yes, you can use a 4-Way splitter to feed four devices in the same room, although
it will result in about 6 dB of signal loss to each device.

1->4 splitters typically have 7dB-8dB insertion loss per line. 6dB is more typical of 1->3 splitters.

http://www.pacificcable.com/Picture_Page.asp?DataName=201-284
http://www.pacificcable.com/Picture_Page.asp?DataName=201-104
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post #5 of 23 Old 10-31-2012, 02:20 PM - Thread Starter
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I need to adjust my forum settings, I didnt get my email notifications frown.gif

Satellite is what I have (D*). I beleive I can acess the diagnostic menus and will see what my signal is to my current H24 DVR. Additional TV's will run basic HD boxes H25's.

I mentioned using a 4-way splitter, even though I only plan on 3 TV's because it seems like 4-way's are more common, but if it appears through diagnostics that there may be a signal loss issue, I will search/spend for a 3-way.
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post #6 of 23 Old 10-31-2012, 05:22 PM
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Answer for DirecTV Receivers is different than for Cable: NO, you can't use a simple RF Splitter.
A Multiswitch responds to signals from each Receiver selecting desired LNB Polarity output.
A single cable runs from the Multiswitch to each Receiver. And it might be built into some Dish's:
http://www.highdefinitionblog.com/?page_id=19

H24 DirecTV Receivers are presumably capable of being setup to operate with different IR codes:
http://forums.directv.com/pe/elementDisplayRedirect.jsp?elementID=11119448
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post #7 of 23 Old 10-31-2012, 09:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrdeath2000 View Post

I need to adjust my forum settings, I didnt get my email notifications frown.gif

Satellite is what I have (DTV). I beleive I can acess the diagnostic menus and will see what my signal is to my current H24 DVR. Additional TV's will run basic HD boxes H25's.

I mentioned using a 4-way splitter, even though I only plan on 3 TV's because it seems like 4-way's are more common, but if it appears through diagnostics that there may be a signal loss issue, I will search/spend for a 3-way.

http://www.pacificcable.com/Picture_Page.asp?DataName=201-101
http://www.pacificcable.com/Picture_Page.asp?DataName=201-281
http://www.pacificcable.com/Picture_Page.asp?DataName=201-201
http://www.pacificcable.com/Picture_Page.asp?DataName=201-221
http://www.pacificcable.com/Picture_Page.asp?DataName=201-261
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post #8 of 23 Old 11-01-2012, 02:37 PM
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Those pacificable RF Splitters are for Cable and are NOT compatible with DirecTV Multiswitches.
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post #9 of 23 Old 11-01-2012, 09:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

Those pacificable RF Splitters are for Cable and are NOT compatible with DirecTV Multiswitches.

They are compatible with the DirecTV boxes if used in the output cabling. The OP wasn't real clear about his need when I suggested those. They were basically in reply to his "...search for a 3-way" comment.
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post #10 of 23 Old 11-02-2012, 11:14 AM - Thread Starter
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I see 3-ways are equally available. Excellent.

Are there different kinds of splitters? Because the cable from my dish runs to the cable box on the side of the house where it feeds into a 6 or 8 way splitter [similar to the pictures in the links above], the splitter then feeds all the rooms within the house, as I'm sure 98% of houses are like, using that point as a common fork. I would just be adding an additional fork from the inside coax outlet.

Does this work because that is off of the direct sattelite line and what I am proposing is splitting an already split signal?

My setup includes the Swm box and the ethernet to coax[deca] adapter by the DVR with the whole home dvr, 1 HR24 and 3 H25's.


SWM - http://www.ebay.com/itm/DIRECTV-PI-21R1-03-21V-VOLT-1-5A-PI-SWM-DTV-POWER-INVERTER-NEW-/120969852631?pt=US_Satellite_Signal_Multiswitches&hash=item1c2a5d76d7

Splitter (at the cable box before going into house) - http://www.ebay.com/itm/BRAND-NEW-DIRECTV-8-WAY-SWM-SPLITTER-/221126459088?pt=US_Splitters_Combiners&hash=item337c29fed0

Deca - http://www.ebay.com/itm/Directv-Broadband-Deca-Adapter-ON-Demand-Cinema-Plus-Satellite-TV-Internet-MRV-/170925966135?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item27cbfb4337

I cant verify the above part #'s but they look identical and I know the type of equipment is there.
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post #11 of 23 Old 11-02-2012, 01:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrdeath2000 View Post

I see 3-ways are equally available. Excellent.

Are there different kinds of splitters? Because the cable from my dish runs to the cable box on the side of the house where it feeds into a 6 or 8 way splitter [similar to the pictures in the links above], the splitter then feeds all the rooms within the house, as I'm sure 98% of houses are like, using that point as a common fork. I would just be adding an additional fork from the inside coax outlet.

This is where you're confusing us. In the same sentence you use the words "dish" and "cable box", and then "splitter." Your "dish" will not work plugged into a "cable box" or into a "splitter." A "dish" plugs into a receiver of some sort, or into a "multi-switch", which goes to multiple receivers. Since I now really don't know for sure what you have or what you're trying to do, I'm gonna bow out.
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post #12 of 23 Old 11-02-2012, 02:05 PM - Thread Starter
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By cable box I mean the box on the side of the house where your coax and phones lines from the house all originate. My satellite dish has a coax cable that runs to that box and into a splitter like above, that then branch out into the house and each room through the walls to a wall-plate. From the wall plate the receiver(s) are hooked up.

box like this - http://images.meredith.com/diy/images/2009/03/p_SCW_238_11.jpg
would junction box be a better term?

I do not recall seeing anything like a multi-switch. But I will take a close look at the dish and wiring tonight, maybe provide some actual pictures of what is there.



****I do apologize for making this painful, certainly not my intention, but may be a result.
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post #13 of 23 Old 11-02-2012, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrdeath2000 View Post

By cable box I mean the box on the side of the house where your coax and phones lines from the house all originate. My satellite dish has a coax cable that runs to that box and into a splitter like above, that then branch out into the house and each room through the walls to a wall-plate. From the wall plate the receiver(s) are hooked up.

box like this - http://images.meredith.com/diy/images/2009/03/p_SCW_238_11.jpg
would junction box be a better term?

I do not recall seeing anything like a multi-switch. But I will take a close look at the dish and wiring tonight, maybe provide some actual pictures of what is there.

A multi-switch might look a lot like a splitter. A 4-way and 8-way multi-switch:

http://www.pacificcable.com/Picture_Page.asp?DataName=202-044
http://www.pacificcable.com/Picture_Page.asp?DataName=202-058

Once the dish signal goes through a multi-switch, that output can't again go through another multi-switch, IIRC. To be sure, I'd have a satellite TV expert actually look at what you are trying to do.
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post #14 of 23 Old 11-03-2012, 06:39 AM
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You're probably going to have to read off the faceplate of that "splitter" that's in your "cable box" and tell us what it says. The fact you have just one line coming from the dish suggests what's known as a Single Wire Multiswitch installation. You still can't use regular cable splitters with that, but IIRC it can be configured to work with multiple receivers in the same room being fed off of the one line, assuming THAT line isn't split upstream. Note: I don't have an SWM installation, so I don't have hands-on experience. I'll fix the title and maybe drag some SWM experts in here.

I, too, have 4 - 5 sets on one wall of my basement for weekend sports. I have one cable box, three D* receivers and one HTPC. Every set on the wall can display DirecTV, cable or over-the-air. Even internet streaming via the HTPC. It's a nice setup, but required fishing a lot of cable, since each D* receiver has to have its own cable back to the multiswitch (in my case, a Zinwell 4 X 8) but the end result is nice. The 55-inch set displays whatever game we're paying rapt attention to. The other 3 - 4 sets will have other games, RedZone, NASCAR or what have you.

And, yes, D* receivers can be configured to work with different IR codes so they don't conflict. In my arrangement, I have one receiver using IR, one using RF and one that's a different brand altogether.

Grab a picture of your dish and of the box its line runs to.

Oh, and by the way DTV = over-the-air digital television. D* = DirecTV. Just some conventions we use here on AVS. No biggie.

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post #15 of 23 Old 11-03-2012, 06:41 AM
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Topic title changed.

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post #16 of 23 Old 11-06-2012, 02:05 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, I've done some more research and it appears I need to get a few more pictures. I just took one of my splitter I have behind the DVR, but after reading more about the SWM system, I should get more pictures of the crap that's all hooked up.

I may be using the term splitter incorrectly, and maybe it's a multiswitch, but it's not all high speed like whats been posted, it's very simple and I will provide a picture.

Looks like the dish runs its cable the "juntion box" with my 8-way splitter (not all ports used, looks like the one i provided below, but 8 ports) and it uses the input, then the cables from that splitter to inside the house (this junction box feeds to all the coax within the house) where the DVR is at. There is what appears to be a SWM box, which I beleive is a "power inserter", and a DECA (for the whole home dvr). There is a 2-way splitter there, which is used to feed the DECA. With luck being on my side, this 2-way might be able to be swapped with a 4-way to achieve my goal.

LL

2-2150mhz
2-way splitter
MSPLIT2R1-03

**Post above edited to change DTV to D*
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post #17 of 23 Old 11-07-2012, 10:13 AM - Thread Starter
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As promised.

Junction box/cable box:
LL

Open box:
LL

Close up of 8-way splitter: MSPLIT8R0-03
LL

The other splitter in there is from when I HAD cable tv (Cox). I'm not sure where all the lines from that one go, maybe one room that's now storage and one where my cable modem hooks up because I still have cable internet. All of the other Coax outlets are accounted for and are part of the D* setup on the 8-way.
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post #18 of 23 Old 11-08-2012, 09:46 AM
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The typical SWM setup will support up to 16 tuners. If you are using DVRs that is 2 per unit, so you should be ok. All the D receivers that are current models will allow you to assign a separate IR code for the remote, so again you are good. You should be able to add a SWM port in your main viewing area with out a problem. Just be sure to use the GREEN label equipment, get it either from ebay or Solid Signal
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post #19 of 23 Old 11-08-2012, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
The typical SWM setup will support up to 16 tuners
wrong. That setup posted will support only 8 tuners
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post #20 of 23 Old 11-08-2012, 12:57 PM
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OK, like the others said we now know that you have a DirecTV SWM install with a SWM LNB. This setup can only handle 8 tuners like unclehonkey said. So, we need to know exactly what model receivers/DVRs you have throughout your house so we can figure out how many tuner slots you have available. Then we can tell you what all would need done to get your setup working as you want.

By looking at your photo's I am going to guess that you will need to be switched over to a regular LNB with 4 coax wires running from it to a SWM16 that could be placed in the distribution box on the side of your house. Then you would have the ability to have 16 tuners active (8 on each output of the SWM 16). I'm guessing you will need the SWM 16 because you currently have 6 coax cables coming off of that 8 way splitter. And you have mentioned that the living room currently has a DVR in there. That means you most likely have at least 7 tuners in your current setup (2 for the DVR in the living room, and 5 boxes elsewhere throughout the house). Adding two more receivers in the Living room would put you at 9 tuners total (or 10 if you currently have 2 DVRS). That would mean you would have to have a SWM16.

All that said, if you get the receivers from DirecTV and have them come install it all of those changes should be included and they should know how to get it all up and running. You would most likely be better off just calling them and having them take care of all of that.
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post #21 of 23 Old 11-08-2012, 02:50 PM - Thread Starter
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8 connections should be all I need.

I use:
1x HR24 (DVR)
3x H25
[5 of 8 usable slots used]

I have one wired on that 8-way for our game room for when we have parties, so I can move the box from my daughters room to there. So it would still be the same setup above.
Adding the two additional TV's in the other room should put me at:
1x HR24
3x H25
2x ??? H25's as well?
[7 of 8 usable slots used]

So the DVR counts as 2 but only uses 1 coax port? If that is the case I do need to figure out which coax is extra on my splitter or at least mark each with a tag for what room they are for future reference.

Thanks!
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post #22 of 23 Old 11-09-2012, 07:42 AM
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Yes, with a SWM system a DVR only needs one coax cable and can still use both tuners (it splits the signal internally to the two tuners).

So if you only have one DVR and 5 Hd receivers then you will be fine with your current SWM LNB since you will only be using 7 tuners like you said.

The first step is to figure out what cables are what outside in the distribution box and label them all. If you don't have a coax tracing tool you can do this by disconecting one at a time and seeing which receiver inside loses it's signal. You have 6 coax going to the 8 way splitter though, so I'm guessing two aren't hooked up to a receiver. You'll probably have to move a receiver in order to figure out which of those are which. Also pay attention to which line has the black SWM power inserter on it. When you unplug that one from the splitter you actually lose signal to all of the receivers. The power inserter should be hooked up to the port on the top right I believe, so that is most likely the run to your living room. Once you have all your runs labelled you can start figuring out the best way to wire everything up.

You would probably be better off changing out some of your splitters. I personally would probably get rid of the 8 way splitter you currently have and put a two way splitter in it's place. Then from that 2 way splitter you would hook up one side (the one on the left that is labelled as Power Passing) to the coax run that goes to your living room. Then you would put a 4 way splitter in the living room to feed the HD-DVR and two new HD receivers, and the DECA and power inserter, again making sure to hook up the power inserter to the port labelled as power passing. You would take the other output from the two way splitter outside and use a really short piece of coax to another 4 way splitter in the same distribution box. That 4 way splitter would then feed the coax cables that go to the other locations throughout your house. The cable for your game room can just be left disconnected, and you can just hook it up in place of the cable for your daugter's room when you need it. Doing it this way it means all of your receivers should have about the same DB loss from going through the 2 way and 4 way splitters. Chances are if you try leaving the 8 way splitter in place outside and just replacing the 2 way splitter in your living room with a 4 way splitter you are going to end up with too much DB loss on the receivers in the living room and start having issues. Since you already have a 2 way splitter you can just move that one outside. Then you just need to get two 4 way splitters like this.
http://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?mc=02&p=SPLIT4MRV&d=DIRECTV-SWS4-Satellite-4Way-Wide-Band-MRV-Compatible-Splitter-(2-2150-MHz)&c=SatelliteSplitters&sku=8546300083
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post #23 of 23 Old 11-09-2012, 09:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Sounds good!!

Thank you EVERYONE for your patience and help in this. I've learned a lot.

I have some old network testing tools, but probably no coax tester. I' think the main room line was already tagged with a green or purple plastic piece, but I'll check them all out.
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