Connecting OTA antenna into cable system with Directv signal...? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 01-13-2004, 08:49 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi,

Not sure if this is the right forum, moderators please move if it is not.

I'd just like to check if what I want to do is mad or not!

I'd like to add a third line from my directv dish (it has 3 LNBs I
believe) and wire it into my current cable feed - thus giving any
room with a current cable point the ability to use that LNB. Is this
ok?

I'd also like to enable any of the cable points to access an OTA
signal. Could I combine an external antenna signal using some TERC
thing into this new line and therefore feed all the cable jacks in
the house with this combined signal and from any of them use another
TERC thing to split the signal appropriately?

I'm currently using really small indoor silver something (surfer?)
antenna (zenith) which works really well by the window. I presume I
just need a small outdoor antenna to do the same job. Does anyone
have any recommendations?

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, does anyone have a
recommendation for a south bay company/person who could do the
above? And any idea how much? (My zip is 95051)

Thanks
Jonathan
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post #2 of 10 Old 01-14-2004, 05:33 PM
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jotter:

Since you didn't get any responses to date, maybe my 2 cents worth is at least something... ((maybe less than 2 cents...)

The fact that you have 3 LNBs on your sat dish shouldn't affect the number of lead-ins from there. The only factor I'm aware of is how many STBs you are going to connect it to. I have a 3 LNB dish also, but I have 3 lead-ins only because I send it to 3 STBs, one of which is an HD model. If I had only one STB, there would be only one line to it for the dish. The 3 LNB feeds are integrated at the dish.

I think it depends on what kind of inputs are available on your TV as well as what kind of STB you have. On mine, a Mits 55" HDTV, fed by a Hughes E86 receiver, I can select the input on the TV, i.e. antenna, DTV, VCR, DVD, etc. by using the TV remote. Since I only have D* and OTA for TV viewing, cable is not an issue. (I dumped cable when I got D*)

For TV viewing , I have D* into the SAT input on the E86, and my OTA antenna into the ANT input on the E86. If I also wanted to have cable, The only way I think I could do that would be to connect the cable to the antenna input on the TV, and to then view cable, would have to change the input on the TV to that input. Cumbersome.

Unless I want to use my VCR or DVD player, I just leave the TV input set to DTV, and the E86 receiver integrates both the OTA and D* feeds to the TV, and also intregrates the channel menus as well. I then set up several channel lists to pull up, one with only D*, one only for OTA, and one showing both of those integrated. The latter shows duplicate channels, both OTA and D*, which for my wife can be confusing, so I don't use that often.

Maybe this is of no help at all, who knows......
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post #3 of 10 Old 01-14-2004, 05:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply!

I think I should clarify that my current cable system is NOT used - but (like everyone elses house) it's currently wired throughout my house.

I'd like to simply re-use that existing cabling and put either:
* an OTA signal from an external antenna directly into it
* an OTA signal from an external antenna AND a line from my directv multiswitch into the system

At that point ALL cable sockets my house should now have OTA ability (with a suitable decoder) and ONE of them should have directv capability (with a suitable decoder) (I realize you can't use the same connection for multiple dtv decoders).

So really my question amounts to whether (a) it is possible to use my current cable system (without any cable coming in) to carry OTA if I connect it appropriately and (b) whether I can also combine the OTA with a directv signal from the dish and plug that into the cable feed for my house (replacing the cable "in" in my house with this feed in both (a) and (b) ).

... and any recommendations for someone who could do the simple cable connections outside to inside and hang an antenna.

Jonathan
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post #4 of 10 Old 01-14-2004, 05:50 PM
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Now it MIGHT be possible to combine the OTA and the cable lines into whatever input you are now using for OTA, but I would have to experiment with that. I tend to think that wouldn't work. I haven't ever tried that.

But I see no way to integrate either one with D* unless there is a provision for that on your STB. Remember D* is a proprietary signal, and is "descrambled" by you STB that has a valid D*subscription. D* can control your use of their services via the dish.

I suspect D* and "cable" are not friendly, and want you to use only their services, so there may be roadblocks installed to thwart their integration.
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post #5 of 10 Old 01-14-2004, 06:05 PM
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Johnathan:
I just saw your reply after I posted above.
You can take any input signal you have and use your internal cabling to get to a TV, but integration of more than one source is a problem.
For as many cable connections you have in your house, it has been stepped on that many times at least through as many splitters (or one big one) which reduces the signal strength to each connection. That can be a reception problem.
OR...
You could hook up your dish to your house cabling and thereby feed it to each connection, but then need an STB for each TV. Again, whatever splitters are involved reduces the signal strength.

Assuming you want HDTV, you can't use that output from one STB to send through your house cabling, since it is a three-wire output to your HDTV.

Am I confusing you yet?......
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post #6 of 10 Old 01-14-2004, 06:07 PM
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Actually, it's 5 wire out of your STB for HD, 3 for video, 2 audio.
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post #7 of 10 Old 01-14-2004, 06:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the response.

So, I think if I use a diplexer to combine my OTA antenna signal with a new connection from my dish into a signal coax, then connect that coax to my internal cable then I'm ok (providing I can locate the internal cabling which directly feeds a particular room) with a second diplexer on the output side of the cable to a d* STB and OTA STB (maybe the same box).

What remains unclear is whether I could split off the OTA signal and feed it throughout the internal cabling system (as splitting the d* signal is not going to work - apparently a direct connection to the LNB is needed)...

Errr, is that right?

Jonathan
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post #8 of 10 Old 01-14-2004, 06:37 PM
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Johnathan:
Okay, I see the source of the confusion. After having re-read your posts, I see your are not talkling about "cable", such as Comcast, etc, but are referring only to your internal cabling in your house. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

You can use your internal cabling to distribute a feed from your antenna, wherever that is located. Signal strength at the various room connections may be an issue.

Your STB handles D* and OTA signals differently. You can't combine them into one cable, then connect that in any way to your STB. You would need two cables to each STB to have both OTA and D*, and then only if it would accommodate both feeds.

Simply: OTA is not scrambled. D* is. No way to combine them onto one cable, then somehow separate them elsewhere from that one cable.

You can't put gasoline and water in the same pipe, and expect to use either at the end.

If you wish no further replies from me, I'll understand....
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post #9 of 10 Old 01-14-2004, 07:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by jotter
Thanks for the response.

So, I think if I use a diplexer to combine my OTA antenna signal with a new connection from my dish into a signal coax, then connect that coax to my internal cable then I'm ok (providing I can locate the internal cabling which directly feeds a particular room) with a second diplexer on the output side of the cable to a d* STB and OTA STB (maybe the same box).

What remains unclear is whether I could split off the OTA signal and feed it throughout the internal cabling system (as splitting the d* signal is not going to work - apparently a direct connection to the LNB is needed)...

Errr, is that right?

Jonathan
Exactly right. OTA and D* can run over the same cable because they run on different frequencies. Diplexers can be used to combine the signals at the antenna/dish end and separate them at the receiver end. There is a small degradation of the signals in the process but it's rare to be a deal breaker. What you have to watch for is splitters in the line. Splitters work for OTA but not for D*.

Pat

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post #10 of 10 Old 01-14-2004, 07:12 PM
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Thanks Pat. I just learned something. But hard to imagine a cable distribution system in a house without one or more splitters.

Hey Jonathan. Disregard my comments. Sounds like I was wrong.

Go for it. Not much to lose trying.
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