Help for sat noob


Sep 3, 2012
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My Satellite Setup
My Location
West Berkshire, UK
Hello, I'm looking for some kind and helpful members to give me some basic info. Although I am technically competent I really know nothing about satellites, dishes and LNBs. I started reading threads in the forum but have got frustrated in trying to find the threads I need. So I'm looking for some good links, for either threads here or resources elsewhere.

My situation is that I have just started to have an interest in Freesat. I have just got a new TV which has a freesat HD tuner as well as a freeview HD tuner, so I am inclined to hook up a dish to see what the content/quality is like (there is also a technical reason why I need a freesat signal which I won't go into here). I already have new PF100 cable installed and I have an old dish & LNB which I removed from the wall when I had an extension built. I am assuming that the previous owner used it for sky. It seemed like a relatively simple idea for me to bolt it on the wall and see if I could get a freesat signal.

Now I know that to do this job I need (other than a ladder :)) a compass and a signal strength meter. I started looking on ebay for the latter and that's when I started looking at satellite finders, and looking into some of them lead me to this site. This has made me realise what I don't know, and that I ought to educate myself a bit more. Whilst I may be content with just getting freesat signals, it is becoming clear to me that I could become interested in other satellites and content.

So can anyone provide me pointers to where I can learn about what (available) satellites there are and what content they provide, and then what are the requirements for receiving equipment (dish size etc.) for each?


Super Moderator
Staff member
Dec 10, 2004
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My Satellite Setup
1.2M Channel Master, 1224 motor, VU+ Duo 2
My Location
North West
Welcome to the forum.
What you're asking is not that difficult, but does depend on your budget.
You are legally allowed upto a 1 Metre satellite dish, without needing to apply for planning permission, but if you want something smaller then consider the TD 88cm or the Penta 85cm.
I suggest you fit a motorized system, as this will give you access to a lot of satellites, usually ranging from 42E to 30W, but you can get even more.
First off I would suggest you check our dish pointer application, to see where to site your dish:
DishPointer | Satellite TV - Digital TV News & Help Forums
Just type in your postcode and you will get your Latitude, and Longitude.
I would also suggest you put up a Sky dish, for your freesat TV, and use the new, motorized dish, with a dedicated satellite receiver.

Have a read through the satellite dish set up guides:
Dish Setup Guides, Information threads and FAQs | Satellite TV & Digital TV support forums

Many of us update/change our satellite receiver but tend to stick with the same dish/motor, so first work out where you would need to install a motorized dish. Use the dish pointer application, select Thor, 0.8W, probably your nearest true south satellite, enter your postcode, and zoom in, on the map, to your house.
By using this you should quickly learn where you will need to site your dish, which is important, not only for installation, but also maintenance. If you're lucky, and have an open, south facing, rear garden, then a ground mount is easier to install.

Have a read through one of vipersan's installation threads: