Sky Channels in Damascus?

jonnymaserati

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Hi there

I'm about to move to Damascus Syria (not too far from Cyprus) and I'm wondering if I'll be able to pick up UK TV?

Presumably I'll need a similar sized dish? I have a Digital Everywhere FireDTV DVB-S2 box connected to a Mac and using Elgato EyeTV software. Will I need a card to receive channels (sorry, I'm new to satellite, used to cable).

I've got a Sky Freeview card, but seems it has to be registered in a Sky box?

I'm also interested in picking up some Dutch channels. Do I need a Canal+ subscription?

Thanks in advance.

Regards... Jonny.
 

deepbluesky

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It's rather hard not to say impossible to predict the exact minimum dish size you'll need in Damascus. Often even small distances in out of footprint areas show a huge difference in signal.

Starting with the dutch channels:
Forget _http://www.lyngsat.com/packages/canaldigitaal23.html. 23.5E must be far too weak there. I doubt if a 5m dish would suffice.

For _http://www.lyngsat.com/packages/canaldigitaal19.html you've got chances to get it. A 3m dish (not hit, not mesh, good quality) should do the job and get also the other frequencies of 19.2E except of Astra 1F. Of course you will need a subscription running under somebody's address in the Netherlands.

For the UK programming i would recommend either a 2nd 3m dish or making the other dish motorized. This will bring you also other satellites. This has to be done by professionals. I cannot guarantee that you will get all frequencies of Astra 2A/B and Eurobird 1. Forget Astra 2D which maybe is receivable on 5m, maybe not. For Sky UK you will need a dedicated Sky receiver with a sensitive tuner and subscription running on a british address as many Expats do.

More information i am sure can give you other people here on the board.
 

Robbiewright

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Jonny,
You might have to be a bit sneaky when setting up you dish in Syria, I'm sure bring a big dish into the country will have it problems, it might be worth looking into or see what the local market is like, I would of thought 2.4 will be about the biggest you will be able to get there, it might be big enough to get the bigger foot prints. A big dish pointed in a diffrent direction to all the others could cause you to be accused of spying.
Robbie.
 

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deepbluesky said:
. Forget Astra 2D which maybe is receivable on 5m, maybe not.

The only report for that area for Astra 2D is in Israel and a 7m dish was needed!
 

deepbluesky

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Analoguesat said:
The only report for that area for Astra 2D is in Israel and a 7m dish was needed!

That's why i have written "maybe". Wasn't the 7m in Amman/Jordan ?
 

Analoguesat

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Umm it might well have been Jordan - somewhere on that part of the eastern Mediterranean anyway.
 

deepbluesky

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Anyway, the risk would be too high to try such a monster dish and become aware that you are located in a black hole for Astra 2D. I just wanted to point out that for a private person it's practically not recommended in hunting this low power satellite just for watching TV. 19.2E and 28.2E are stronger. The bigger the dish diameter the more frequencies can be gotten.
 

jonnymaserati

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guys

appreciate the feedback!

i'm off back towards the end of the month so will test out the local options with the contact i've been given.

the guy who previously lived in the apartment has left a dish on the roof and recommended me the installer. he had this dish motorised but has taken the motor with him (actually said he never used it). however, he did say that the installer had told him that it was possible to receive sky channels, so my hopes are raised a bit from this.

i'll let you know what i discover!

regarding dishes... i'll have to send you a picture. every roof in the city has at least one dish on it! some of them are pretty large. although it's supposed to be illegal, everyone has them. i don't think it will be too tricky getting the equipment... quality may be a different issue though.

thanks again...

jonny.
 

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Dont forget you are a foreigner-you may have to get permission for a large dish. Hotbird, Arabsat and Astra are all available. Yes the Syrians all have dishes too,remember though - Syria is a dictatorship, they have little respect for anyone. The Baath party are a law unto themselves. Watch what you talk about with the locals or out in the town, and avoid politics at all costs.
Good Luck
 

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jonnymaserati

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guys

thanks for the responses.

i'm now in damascus and indeed it is not possible to install a dish larger than 2m without government approval and since the landlord lives in the apartment i'm living in and has the key to the roof, there's not much chance of stealthily installing anything bigger.

i have just had an "astra 2 special" 1.8m dish installed and i'm picking up all the big footprint stuff (i did a scan and got over 200 channels including radio), but to be honest that's not a great deal on freeview since 90% of these channels are encrypted. however, all the sky channels seem to be there.

so... since i kind of have a UK address (my father lives in the UK and is a sky subscriber), is it possible to order a sky box and card, get it activated in the UK and then use it uninterrupted in damascus?

i know you used to be able to, but i also read that sky are clamping down and required the box to be connected to the phone line?

can anyone advise (also on what's the best box to get since the signal quality is pretty poor registering at 2-16% on my firedtv s2 card connected to my mac computer).

also... i have a 68cm dish at home that i will bring over... any recommendations on what i could pick up with this here with freeview, preferrably english speaking?

regards... jonny.
 

Analoguesat

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Yes you can subscribe quite easily, but make sure the channels you are interested in are available in Damascus.

Then get a full sky sub for whatever package you are interested in at your folks house and make sure you pay the 25quid fee for not having it connected to a phone line.

DONT try and get a multiroom package - that needs the phone line.
 

deepbluesky

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For Sky related stuff surely other members can help you precisely. I'm gonna answer what you should be able to receive there with your 68cm. I really hope it's a solid dish and not mesh which gain is a bit lower. Here we go:

42E: lots of turkish channels showing also english content
39E: greek channel SKAI
26E: lots of arabian channels showing also english content, Orbit Network as PayTV is worth it
7E: encrypted Digitürk
4W ME Beam: except of the encrypted Yes stuff, maybe the israeli state channels
7W: lots of arabian channels showing also english content, Showtime as PayTV is worth it

I cannot guarantee if your small dish will all get with sufficient signal. With a bigger dish of course you will get also other positions. If possible, make your 1.80m motorized if it's only for you and not also feeding other people.
 
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