Old SD - DTV Equipment Starting To Fail - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 11-06-2009, 08:18 AM - Thread Starter
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Well, I think the time is near for me to upgrade to HD equipment. I think the LNB on my 12 year old 18" dish is starting to act up. I replaced it once about 6 years ago. I recently noticed my signal strength has dropped to around 76%. I tried to realign the dish with no better out come than 76% on both tuners. I've been able to maintain around 96 to 98% since I first installed it back in '97. I have also lost channels I used to get, DIY, TLC, and a couple others. They are so pixulated you can not watch them. Both receivers experience the same issues. Tried straight runs from the LNB to each tuner, same issues. Has DTV changed compression on some of their channels?

Anyway all my equipment is owned and self installed and I don't want to throw money into old technology to trouble shoot. ( Even though a new dual LNB is only about $15 online ) I'll call DTV soon and see what the current subscriber offer is to take the HD plunge.

Any one have suggestions as to the best TV to get in the $1500 range? I'd like one in the 52" to 55" size range if possible. Any heads up on BlackFriday deals this year?

I know this may not be the place for this post, but the UTV'ers here have been a great wealth of advise over the years.

Thanks
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post #2 of 13 Old 11-06-2009, 09:22 AM
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Thanks for the reminder... Got a "weak" tuner feed on my Sony UTV I need to track down.

Hopefully it is just a back run. Got to remind myself I've been paying for the Protection Plan all these years and maybe just maybe I'll have to take advantage of it again. (If I find the cable run/LNB/Diplexer is bad or something. Save the $20 or whatever and have DTV "fix it"...)

Good luck with the HD upgrade.
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post #3 of 13 Old 11-06-2009, 02:03 PM
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If you pay for the protection plan, just have them come out and track the issue down. I recently had some bad reception on a Tivo box (both tuners had 0 signal). My Ultimate TV could get signal from either cable on it's one working tuner.

I called basically to get a new DVR. The guy plugged it in and said it had poor signal. Turns out most of the connectors on the muli-switch were hosed. He was surprised anything worked. He ran new cables where necessary and tucked the muli-switch under the eave to keep it protected a bit better. He also tweaked the dish for better signal.

1) The Ultimate TV tuners could pull a signal where nothing else could. One always fails, but that working one is awesome!

2) The protection plan may result in a better fix than you think.

EH
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post #4 of 13 Old 11-06-2009, 02:20 PM
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Hi,

Thanks for the tip. Having a Pro "tweak" my Sat Signal would be a good idea.

Only "concern" is having to share my "do it myself"/rats nest/self install setup with the "Pro". Can I accept any disapproval/comments they may have to throw my way?

You are correct to say that the Pro will have all the equipment to properly test my setup and diagnose/fix issues that as a "Self Installer" I'll never be able to achieve.
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post #5 of 13 Old 11-06-2009, 05:08 PM - Thread Starter
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In my case I bypassed the multi switch by running a back-up, on hand closet stored cable from the LNB through the back door & windows directly to the two turners on my two UTV's with no change to my troubles. Aligning a SD dish yourself is no problem at all. I'm sure my LNB is the culprit. Or, can extreme fading on the finish of the dish itself cause signal issues? I tried to clean the front of the LNB with a shot of windex along with the face of the dish. Pulled a lot of grey finish onto a wad of paper towels.

Side note: guess I may need to up my budget a bit for a new TV. Any thoughts on the Vizio XVT VF551XVT LED 240Hz ? The whole back lit LED panel that brightens the LCD panel, not side lit, seems to produce a fantastic picture. So a couple hours of internet searching reveals. A $2000 price point may be the ticket. The 120Hz .vs 240Hz refresh rates seem to be a wash as far as picture quality goes. Your eyes and broadcast content don't seem to need the extra refresh rate. But if you can get it why not? I need to find one of these locally and see if they will let me hook up my own media to judge the overall quality.

Any other TV suggestions?
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post #6 of 13 Old 11-06-2009, 07:39 PM - Thread Starter
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First contact with DTV for HD upgrade.... They offered 1 free HD DVR and one free HD receiver, free install of the 5 LNB dish to two rooms and $10 credit for 12 months to cover the HD programming. What I will loose is the SD feed of the East and West Coast network channels I now receive, as they stated the FCC only allows for the local network channels to be received in HD by local sources. ( The local channels I can get are all 60 to 100 miles away in every direction! Errr.. not very local in my opinion. ) I like the East and West Coast channels due to being able and recording network and cable channels at the same time at different times during the day. I'll need more than one HD DVR to cover my past viewing habits.

If they can cover two HD DVR's on the next call, I may take the plunge. May need to state I wish to cancel to get this though.. Well see. I don't want free movie channels, etc. A second free HD DVR will do.
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post #7 of 13 Old 11-07-2009, 06:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guitars911 View Post

First contact with DTV for HD upgrade.... They offered 1 free HD DVR and one free HD receiver, free install of the 5 LNB dish to two rooms and $10 credit for 12 months to cover the HD programming. What I will loose is the SD feed of the East and West Coast network channels I now receive, as they stated the FCC only allows for the local network channels to be received in HD by local sources. ( The local channels I can get are all 60 to 100 miles away in every direction! Errr.. not very local in my opinion. ) I like the East and West Coast channels due to being able and recording network and cable channels at the same time at different times during the day. I'll need more than one HD DVR to cover my past viewing habits.

If they can cover two HD DVR's on the next call, I may take the plunge. May need to state I wish to cancel to get this though.. Well see. I don't want free movie channels, etc. A second free HD DVR will do.

Please keep us posted on this. I have decided to let my UTV's die a natural death and will be moving to HD when it happens. Or sooner if the deal is good enough.


kazak

God split himself into a myriad parts that he might have friends.' This may not be true, but it sounds good - and is no sillier than any other theology. - Lazarus Long
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post #8 of 13 Old 11-16-2009, 01:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, finally pulled the trigger and have DTV coming to install the 5 LNB Dish this Saturday. They could do it tomorrow, but I want to be there to make sure the installer drops off the HR23 HD-DVR and not something else. The sales rep did not know which receiver model I would get. It depends on the installers stock. Bla, Bla, Bla.. Looks like you can just plug in an external esata hard drive and whalla, more room for HD shows.

Got the $10 credit for 12 months, but had to fork over $99 for the HD-DVR. Was told over the last two calls to DTV that the first guy I spoke to was way wrong in what he offered me. They do not offer free HD-Dvr's to existing customers at my programming level. ( I don't get the movie packages ) Oh well... DTV has provided me trouble free service since 1997. They have never goofed up a bill or called me to upgrade anything over the phone.

I also just picked up a Vizio VF551XVT 55" LED-LCD set from Sam's over the weekend. It's dying for an HD signal....
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post #9 of 13 Old 11-17-2009, 06:41 PM
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I think you probably rate as a premier custoemr sicne you have been around since 1997. Talk to retentions after they get teh equipment in and say its no better than your neighbors cable. Tell them you are going over if you don't get a free HD DVR. That will get things moving for you.
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post #10 of 13 Old 11-19-2009, 08:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Already a done deal. $99 for the latest HD-DVR isn't so bad. I live in the sticks, cable stops about 10 miles away. Thanks for the tip though.
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post #11 of 13 Old 11-25-2009, 02:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kazak View Post

Please keep us posted on this. I have decided to let my UTV's die a natural death and will be moving to HD when it happens. Or sooner if the deal is good enough.


kazak

Say it ain't so.
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post #12 of 13 Old 11-26-2009, 10:58 AM
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Originally Posted by eea123 View Post

Say it ain't so.

I know, I know. It's a sad day.


kazak

God split himself into a myriad parts that he might have friends.' This may not be true, but it sounds good - and is no sillier than any other theology. - Lazarus Long
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post #13 of 13 Old 12-01-2009, 02:20 PM - Thread Starter
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The HD upgrade is the way to go. I'm glad I waited for led backlit lcd panels to arrive on the scene. The Vizio 551 is a fantastic display. Blacks are black. The screen is incredibly bright and crystal clear when viewing 1080P content. I threw in a Blu-Ray player too. Man the Dark Knight looks good on Blu-Ray.

The HR22/HR23 HD-DVR's operate very similar the UTV. It will take some time to get used to the GUI change, but I can see I made the right choice in upgrading to HD vs. fixing up the old SD system.

Anyone on the HD fence should go ahead and take the plunge.
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