Any satellite tv experts

I got Freesat installed on Wednesday, just the dish and then got the receiver, a Humax Foxsat on Thursday.

Anyway, it can't find a satellite signal. Put my old Sky box on and that can't either. So, checking the manual, Humax say to manually set the transponder code to a particular setting. I did this but still nowt. However if I change to another transponder code I get a 100% signal but no channels found.

As I don't understand how transponder codes work, I'm guessing he's lined it up with the wrong satellite. I saw him using a meter but perhaps he had it set wrong. I've called them back out but they can't come until Monday but if I know it's lined up wrong I might just have a crack at re-aligning it myself.

Anyone guess at what the problem is?
 

rusky

CC Addict
Location
Hove
Unless you have a sat meter, I wouldn't bother! A couple of degrees makes a lot of difference.
 
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Crackle

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Uncle Mort said:
Crackle, when you say it doesn't find a satellite, is this when you run the freesat installation? (I have a Foxsat HDR, but I guess it's similar on a normal box)?
Well then and when you go to the manual tune option, which is where you can change the transponder code.

I did a bit more fiddling before and I seem to be able to get quite a few German channels on the transponder codes which work. I'm beginning to think he's pointed it at the Hotbird satellite.
 
You've not got polarity set to just Horizontal or Vertical instead of both by any chance.
I'm presuming only one receiver .. ie its not daisy chained off another receiver in another room.. this can give the impression of working with missing channels.
 
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Crackle

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Frustratingly, my ladder doesn't reach or I would. Just in case I figure a way of reaching it, what compass bearing do I need for Astra?
 
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Crackle

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meenaghman said:
You've not got polarity set to just Horizontal or Vertical instead of both by any chance.
I'm presuming only one receiver .. ie its not daisy chained off another receiver in another room.. this can give the impression of working with missing channels.
Yes just one receiver directly connected and the transponder options are preset in a list so you can't change the polarity.
 

Davidc

Guru
Location
Somerset UK
Crackle said:
Frustratingly, my ladder doesn't reach or I would. Just in case I figure a way of reaching it, what compass bearing do I need for Astra?
It depends where you live.

I've attached the SES information on bearings etc. to this post.

Edit: I think you have to right click it and tell your computer to open or save it, rather than just click on it.
 

Davidc

Guru
Location
Somerset UK
Uncle Mort said:
It depends a bit on your location, but you want to aim for 28 (and a bit) degrees East of South. I would usually take the LNB off the arm on the dish and then gaffa a compass to the arm - you can get it pretty accurate like this. I suspect you'll have problems with your ladder though...
Sorry Uncle Mort but that's wrong.

The 28 degrees is the orbital position, it's directly above the equator at a longitude of 28 degrees east.

The azimuth (horizontal angle) depends where you are. The nearest place to the UK where it's 28 deg east is in the North Sea half way between the Shetlands and Norway!

rather than work it out using 3D co-ordinate geometry I've posted the maps produced by SES! They also include the elevation and polarisation offsets.

It also shows where in Devon, Cornwall, West Wales, and so on you need the bigger dishes, either for signal strength or to avoid interference from other satellites.
 
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Crackle

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Thanks for that Davidc and Uncle Mort. I understand the lining up bit but as my ladder won't reach even if I do dangerous balancing acts with it, positioning the dog as a soft landing etc.. I'll have to wait until Monday.

As an aside though, I've never understood or found an explanation I understood of Transponder codes and polarities. I once had a portable dish and receiver which I tried to program manually for the UK but never got it to work, even though I thought I'd entered everything correctly. Do any of you know a decent web resource for explaining it or indeed offer a summary yourself?
 

Davidc

Guru
Location
Somerset UK
Crackle said:
Thanks for that Davidc and Uncle Mort. I understand the lining up bit but as my ladder won't reach even if I do dangerous balancing acts with it, positioning the dog as a soft landing etc.. I'll have to wait until Monday.

As an aside though, I've never understood or found an explanation I understood of Transponder codes and polarities. I once had a portable dish and receiver which I tried to program manually for the UK but never got it to work, even though I thought I'd entered everything correctly. Do any of you know a decent web resource for explaining it or indeed offer a summary yourself?
I think for most people if the things are in difficult places it's the same as for terrestrial TV aerials - stay safe and don't end up like Rod Hull of Emu fame.

If you don't get a link or reply PM me and I'll do a concise explanation - don't have time now though.

Uncle Mort said:
Oh, sorry, but it works for me. As I said, it depends where you are, but with a compass, you can do it roughly and then adjust manually by increments. Unless you've got a tiny dish, it works fine and you have plenty of play on either side of a pinpoint accurate measurement. My big dish can even get locks on 28.2 and 19.2 at the same time; I have four lnbs on it currently.

I'm not arguing that your data is much more accurate, though.
Yes - I've found that with a little Zone 1 dish it's not very critical. gets more fussy with a Zone 2 in West Devon, and more again with a 1 metre dish in the middle of France.

Dishes produce a real image, with different points in the sky in different places. All you need to do is put one LNB where the image of each satellite you want is. It's possible to set up a shaving mirror to do the same with light, so you can see how the principle works.

I can't vouch for the accuracy of that data, it came from SES (who own/ operate the satellite) so I just assume it's right.
 

marinyork

Resting in suspended Animation
Location
Logopolis
Crackle said:
As an aside though, I've never understood or found an explanation I understood of Transponder codes and polarities. I once had a portable dish and receiver which I tried to program manually for the UK but never got it to work, even though I thought I'd entered everything correctly. Do any of you know a decent web resource for explaining it or indeed offer a summary yourself?
King of sat. Tx means transponder.
 
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Crackle

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I was about to PM Davidc but thinking about I think I've sussed the basics.

What I think I know is that each geo-stationary satellite has a particular footprint aimed at certain regional areas. To receive a signal from said satellite the dish has to be pointing in the right place and at the right angle.

There tends to be clumps of satellites as well, such as Astra 2d, 2b etc... Each of these satellites carry's a number of transponders and each transponder carry's multiple channels of TV or radio or programme info etc.. Broadcasts from similar broadcasters may actually come from completely different satellites, according to available bandwidth and or contract agreements and they can move from satellite to satellite as feeds come and go. Broadcasts can also be encrypted or FTA

So if i wanted to manually configure a receiver, I'd first have to point it at the right satellites and then program in the transponder frequencies I wish to receive and have the right kind of receiver or card if it was encrypted.

Does that sound about right? The technical details of the satellites and transponder frequencies and polarity is not something I've got my head around though.
 

marinyork

Resting in suspended Animation
Location
Logopolis
Crackle said:
has a particular footprint aimed at certain regional areas.
Yes. Much of europe can get most of the astra 28.5, except 2D where a cult and lot of myths has grown up.

Crackle said:
There tends to be clumps of satellites as well, such as Astra 2d, 2b etc... Each of these satellites carry's a number of transponders and each transponder carry's multiple channels of TV or radio or programme info etc.. Broadcasts from similar broadcasters may actually come from completely different satellites, according to available bandwidth and or contract agreements and they can move from satellite to satellite as feeds come and go. Broadcasts can also be encrypted or FTA
Yes. Good examples of things that move/should are within Five's bouquet and ITV HD which wasn't on astra at all.

If you want to have a look kingofsat.net is the best. Generally speaking i.e. tx 50 Astra 2D people aren't interested that there are 7,8,9,10 SD channels on a transponder or whether they are on eurobird or astra.
 
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Crackle

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Hah fixed! 2cm out of alignment. He apologised profusely, mumbled something about doing it for 20 years etc... drank his tea and exited with good grace. So, now I can watch Le Tour live - cool :biggrin:
 
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