Satellite TV - loadsa thoughts

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Re: Satellite TV - loadsa thoughts

Post by Ivan on Wed Sep 18, 2013 7:00 am

Hi Jalex,
most commercial satellites run in the 12 GHz band. Special parts, e.g. HEMT and GaAs MESFET, special designs and extra knowledge are required there. If you want to do experiments, it seems reasonable to use a commercial external unit and try to make your own internal equipment, beginning with the first IF. (It is usually still too frequency high to use "general purpose" transistors.)

BR from Ivan

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Re: Satellite TV - loadsa thoughts

Post by Jalex2 on Tue Sep 17, 2013 3:16 pm

Hi 
That sounds like fun.  I pay Dish for the 200 channel package and have for years now but I have always wondered if there are free channels I could still play around with on the satellites. I remember years ago my dad had a big 10' dish and he used to get a bunch of stations. I looked for info on the net for circuits and parts but found nothing. All my experimenting has been done with general purpose transistors and they are no good for experimenting in the gig bands.   There has been many times I thought about playing around but it seems I always get shot down by the lack of information in building equipment like this.

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Re: Satellite TV - loadsa thoughts

Post by Admin on Mon Sep 16, 2013 10:19 am

Hi Ivan, thank you very much, I will do just that.

The other point I was really interested in is that these satellite antennas are NOT so directional as you would believe. I was able to receive Astra, Thor and others all at the same time because the beam width is so wide. But this evening I will push it round 10 degrees and see what happens.

A guy at work pointed out that in the UK there is fierce competition between Satellite TV operators and one of them is offering most UK channels for free. All you have to do is buy a box for £59 and then feed your telly via an HDMI cable. They seem to be making money selling boxes for different uses (the BIG box being multi-channel HD recording, timers, etc).

I feel a VISA coming on!!

BR Harry

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Re: Satellite TV - loadsa thoughts

Post by Ivan on Sun Sep 15, 2013 8:16 pm

Hi Harry,
try to turn the dish more to the west. The TV satellites are placed not at the longitude they send to. The aim is to have sunlight on the solar cells during the time, when most people watch TV. You got many German transmissions, the British stations should be cca 5 or 10 degrees to the west.

VBR from Ivan OK1SIP

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Satellite TV - loadsa thoughts

Post by Admin on Sun Sep 15, 2013 4:59 pm

Hi all,
I know absolutely nothing practical about getting Satellite TV.

Over the past couple of months we have had a new road built so that we can dive our cars into the garage. I have even installed a couple of street-lamps to light the path during the forthcoming winter months. Naturally I had to get assistance from a good man with a mechanical digger. It seems that the big rock we thought was part of the mountain was nothing more that a 10-ton rock.

While the guys were here they also took away 8 trees that were 30 metres high. They sheltered the house from the part of the heavens where all the satellites are. So today I connected our satellite TV the dish and pointed it south.

From my experiments with the magnetron and the death-ray I discovered that satellite dishes are NOT perfect parabolas. If that were the case then the dishes would be so touchy and sensitive to the slightest nudge that it would be impossible to have long term uninterrupted service. I got better gain from Astra using a 50cm parabola than I got from a 1.5m "proper thing" satellite dish. The good news is that you do not need to point it at the satellite directly. If you are in the right vicinity then you are receiving several satellites at the same time :-).

I found that if I remove all the search parameters and scan the whole spectrum for non-pay-TV channels, then I can get Al Jazeerah in English and Arabic, the BBC news and world channels, but the other 436 channels were all German, Arabic, German, Turkish, German, French and German.

I am NOT prepared to subscribe to any expensive service or operator, but I would like to see UK free TV. Forget the Disney channel, but I had expected to find the BBC UK channels, ITV channels and perhaps a few local TV and radio channels. Here in Sweden we have BOXER who are very reasonable. They charge only £20 a month, plus £50 every 6 months, plus £60 every year plus an additional charge for the decoder card. This gives us all the Swedish channels we want, both of them.

Anyone any ideas?

Best regards from Harry - SM0VPO

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