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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here I thought when I moved into my new home that I was all set with AV distribution. I've got 2 coax home runs, ethernet, and 2 phone connections from each room to the closet in the garage. Seems like plenty, right?


Well, then I got this DirecTiVo receiver. This DSS receiver requires (for full functionality) two, yes, two independent satellite inputs from my dish. This is b/c it has two tuners, so you can record 2 programs at once. Pretty cool. Anyhow, so now I've got both home runs from my living room feeding the SAT signal into the DirecTiVo receiver. This leaves me with no "empty" coax back to the garage. The problem is that I want to feed the output of the DirecTiVo back to all the other TV's in the house. Since I've only got two home runs from the living room to the garage, and they both drive the SAT signal, I'm screwed! The ethernet is being used by my HTPC, and the phone line is used by the DirecTiVo to phone home to DirecTV. So....


What I'm looking for is suggestions on how to feed the output up my satellite receiver (DirecTiVo) back to my garage closet so I can feed the rest of my house with audio+video. Any ideas? I was thinking wireless perhaps. Are there any good solutions for that with decent quality and little interference problems? Another homerun to the room is 99% impossible, I've got concrete floors and have no way to run another cable that I can think of.


Thanks folks, any suggestions are much appreciated.


Adam
 

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Can you get two RG6's snaked from your Dish to the Garage? If so, you could locate your Tivo receiver in the garage, modulate its output and distribute to all your TV's including your LR over a single RG6 to each room. As for IR control of the Tivo, you can use the same RG6 and inject IR through IR receivers in each room, back to the Tivo located in the garage.


In a typical 'headend' installation, this is usually the case anyway where all your video/audio source equipment is located remotely, not in a particular zone such as your living room.


I would not suggest wireless...The quality is just not there with the consumer models.
 

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Assuming you are not using an OTA antenna or cable TV, you could try using two diplexers and run the modulated output "backwards" on one of the sat cables back to the garage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the replies!


Robermee - Actually, I do have 2 RG6's going from the dish to the garage, where they connect to the two home runs to the living room, and that's how the DTiVo gets the SAT signals. I was drawing up some plans last night, and considering the modulation with a ChannelPlus 3025 (I think that was the model).. But I'm curious how the quality is of the modulated outputs versus using something like SVideo directly to my television. I'm also a little worried the DTiVo may overheat in the garage in the summer. Hmm..


Jim - Great idea. Unfortunately I tried it already and it didn't work. :( The sat signal died when I connected up the modulated output of the TiVo to send it "backwards" down the pipe. I was really excited about this too, I thought it was going to work. Still not sure why it didn't.


Adam
 

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I'm using the 3025 with one channel being my primary satellite receiver and the other being the Room 2 output of my A/V receiver (where I can select from 2nd Sat, VCR, DVD, or TV).


PQ off of the 3025 is excellent (as long as you can create a sufficient channel buffer) - at least as good as the original source. Your major disadvantage is that it has mono modulators - you can get stereo with the 5601 between the source and the 3025. And the IR feature of the 3025 is nice to (although emitters are $10 and targets are $50 each).
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hey scooper.. Ah, I didn't know the 3025 was mono only? I thought it had Video, and L/R Audio inputs. Does it just mix down to mono, or did I misunderstand your message?


Well, now I'm riding the fence between moving my HTPC and TiVo down to the head unit in the garage and just modulating them, or keeping them in the living room... I've got a new idea here. Stick the HTPC on 802.11b, which frees up the ethernet home run. Then use a AV to CAT5 converter to get the SAT output back down to the garage, send it into a 3025 or some other modulator, and then pipe it to the bedroom. I don't mind watching a modulated signal in the bedroom, but in the main living space, I'd really like to have the SVideo and digital audio connections....


Wis
 

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When I implied modulated output, I didn't mean to imply that you should use the RF ch 3/4 output of the Tivo. I suspect that the ground is shared on the antenna and satellite and floating between the RCA connectors and antenna/sat.


I have used diplexers with an external "agile" modulator that took the composite/rca audio Tivo outputs into (in my case) channel 17 output for my in house CCTV circuit for the bedrooms and office. I don't share the antenna or cable with anything else on the CCTV circuits, but it should be possible with low/high/notch filters.


I would NOT use a modulated output for any RPTV/FP/HDTV or any tube larger than 36". S-Video and SPDIF input is much better!


One can extend the distances to at least 100 feet by using three RG6 cables, two for the S-Video (with adapters) and one for the SPDIF.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hey Jim. Thanks for the quick reply. So are you suggesting taking the TiVo composite video and L/R audio outputs and running them into a separate modulator, then sending that "backwards" over one of the two SAT coax signals? Do you think this may work better than what I did before (using the TiVo modulator) b/c of the floating ground? This is an interesting idea. Could I just used the crappy modulator built in to my VCR?


Thanks...

Adam
 

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In general, the built in Ch 3/4 modulators are crap and bleed onto other channels much worse than dedicated modulators and not only that, they provide a crappy signal.
 

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The 3025 mixes down to mono - the 5601 does the proper encoding to keep it stereo.
 

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What about 'stealing' one of the RG6 cables from an adjacent room and using that to send the video back to the garage. And if the walls/floors are concrete, well, that's why they make masonry bits.


Are you sure there isn't a conduit somewhere that you could run through? Were these cables run before the concrete was poured?
 

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You have a couple of options here. First, I don't see why the idea of using a separate modulator to multiplex the upstream signal on one of the satellite cables wouldn't work. That sounds like your best and most painless option. If that doesn't work for some reason, then try to steal a cable from an adjacent room. I did that in my first house with video distribution (just moved and am wiring my second house for video distribution). I had the exact same problem - bought an UltimateTV receiver, needed 2 SAT cables, and ended up stealing a cable from the master bedroom which was just the other side of the wall from where the receiver was.


I would strongly advise against moving the equipment to the headend for a couple of reasons. For one, the garage is a terrible place for a headend because of the heat, and it will be even worse for a satellite receiver. But aside from that, putting your equipment at the headend means you can't make the best video/audio connections to your main equipment. I have all my equipment in the family room, because I want direct S-Video/Composite Video and fiber optic connections to all my AV equipment, so I get the best picture and sound in the main viewing area. The stuff that gets modulated is not even SVideo quality, and most of the times it's not even stereo (unless you pay twice as much for stereo modulators, but even that's still nothing compared to a digital connection).
 

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I am in the process of doing this myself. As I began researching I became more and more ambitious about the project. I am not looking at modulating my Family Room DirecTivo unit, dvd player and HD Satellite receiver (Sat 200) and my Master Bedroom DirecTivo, dvd player as well as a camera in my baby daughter's room. I've decided to use the ChannelPlus SVM-24 in the Family Room and the Master Bedroom. The SVM-24 is the only modulator I've seen that accepts S-Video input as well as composite. It accepts up to four inputs (there is also the SVM-22 which is a two input model), as well as feeding full MTS stereo and IR signals for controlling the units from the target rooms. The camera I will be using comes with it's own built in modulator. I'll feed the modulators to a ChannelPlus Distribution Panel (like the DA-800) and then out to the TVs in each of those rooms as wells as three in other rooms. Both DirecTivos, both dvd players, the vcr and the camera will be modulated to spec unused channels. The distribution panel also feeds the antenna feed to all sites as well if ever decide to add HDTV to other rooms. I am scheduled for install next Friday.
 

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Couldn't you try stacking/destacking the sat signal onto one coax? I.e., put a stacker at the head-end, run the output down one line, de-stack at the TiVo location, and then use the other free line as the return?


Stackers/destackers are expensive, but they should solve your problem. http://www.9thtee.com/dssstuff.htm
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Wow, thanks for all the replies! I agree that I would much prefer the direct SVid connection from the DTiVo to the TV, as well as the optical audio, and would therefore prefer to keep the equipment in my living room. (Well, except for the noise it creates, damn DTiVo harddrive)..


Anyhow, regarding stealing another cable.. I wish I could. There's no adjacent room, and I've got hardwood floors making it hard to run cables to another room. Even through the wall wouldn't work. My only hope is conduits through the concrete, but I just don't have any clue how the place was put together. I'd have to get in touch with my builder...


The stacker is very cool, I've never seen anything like that. Great idea, but DAMN, that is pricey! I'll consider that though...


And Rik, how do you find the output of your modulated DTiVo signal(s), and other signals (DVD, etc...)?


Finally, I would prefer to send the modulated output of the DTiVo "back down" one of the two SAT cables. It just plain didn't work for me. Has anyone done this before successfully, or have any suggestions on what I may have done wrong? I took the DTiVo modulated (crappy) output on channel 3, ran it through a diplexor, and then split it out at the other end. Could it be the floating ground issue? Maybe I should try with a real powered modulator instead of the DTiVo coax output.. Trouble is I don't want to buy a 3025 and then find out it won't work..


Adam
 

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You should take a look at something called Leap Frog. It uses phone wiring to send the signal to another TV. This does not interfere with the phones, so you can use the DSS phone line for this and send the signal to your modulator or distribution panel.
 

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If your DSL modem is on a dedicated run from a splitter in your NID, leapfrog should work just fine. If you are using filters for your regular phones since getting the DSL, leapfrog won't work.
 
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