Advice Needed What to buy. For good reception in Poland

Mark_C89

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What I have at the moment is a 1.1M Maxx Digital Dish, and a Titanium Smart Twin LNB,
this connection is for my SKY+HD standard 500GB, box which I get so so signal on at the moment.

I'm looking for some advice on what equipment to get, including a reliable upgraded box.

Basically I live in northern Poland (Gdańsk area), and at the moment I get varied signal dependent on the channel I am on. Some channels are fanstastic signal quality and reception others not so good can even be as low as 20% but rather strangely I still receieve them with no problems. To give you an idea of what I get

:- Anything BBC or ITV (CH4 too) I don't receive.
I get all sky channels E.G. sky 1 HD, sky living it, all sky movies (in standard def only) apart from sky showcase which I oddly get in HD.
I get most disney children channels minus and quite a few others (boomerang etc.)
Also receiving channels like DMAX, quest, most discovery science stuff again as long as it's not in HD.
I can no longer recieve DAVE HD or now even dave SD, and have recently lost GOLD.

When I installed this at christmas time just gone, reception was steady and mostly 80% at most times regardless of channel (give or take a few), everything was fine up until a few months ago when I was watching dave hd, turned over them back again and gone ever since. I also then lost a few more a month later with things like gold being intermittent, however after a recent problem the list above is what I am left with. I looked for any transponder changes on the KINGOFSAT website and couldn't see any changes for the channels I have lost (after the date I lost them of course).

I had a chat with an installer before I made the install as I originally wanted him to do it, but after a few days he got back to me with "Oh you will need a 3M dish I've checked". I immediately thought codswallop as I had seen on a few polish forums people had received the channels with a much smaller dish some reporting perfect reception with 2.4M. Anyway on a whim and due to cost I went for the 1.1M because I got everything included, at the time I would say I got between 80 and 90% of what was available, so what I would like is some advice on what you guys think would do it to receive everything! If not pretty much everything. I couldn't go as far as 3M that would cost a fortune and I could only imagine putting that on the roof somehow (it's a flat roof).
I was hoping that maybe 1.8M could do it, as at the moment the 1.1M I have is on a pole on the balcony and 1.8M I would be quite happy installing stronger support, maybe a stand up pole on the back of the balcony (what kind of price would I be looking at)

Of course I am also looking to do a box upgrade possibly 1 - 2TB with built in WI-FI (I use a VPN for the box connection, so tracking the box is no problem, if sky even do that)

Much obliged for your time

Mark
 

Lazarus

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Many of the changes you report are likely to have coincided with Astra 2E coming into operation earlier this year.

And further change will come towards the end of this year when Astra 2G comes into service.

So it might be wise, if you have the patience, to wait until the overall situation stabilises: It would be a shame to install a bigger dish that gets a worthwhile array of Channels now, only to find that some "must haves" disappear in a few months time.
 

timo_w2s

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Dave HD, Watch, HD, Alibi HD and TCM SD are now on the UK spot so it would make sense that you can't receive those on your setup.

What does seem very odd is that you've lost Dave SD and Gold. Something is not right with your setup. These are still transmitting from Astra 2A and have been pretty much from the day they started. Astra 2A should be one of the strongest satellites for you, as the main footprint covers Poland easily on both north and south beams with a standard Sky minidish. Even in Finland I can get Dave SD, Watch SD, Alibi SD, Gold, etc on an 80cm dish.

The newer Astra 2F and Astra 2E may not be quite as strong but they still have a Polish "hotspot" which should mean you get the European beams on an 80cm dish. The new Astra 2G European beam should be stronger again for you (similar to 2A) but no one knows how the UK beam will behave in the fringes until it goes live as Tivu says.

For the UK spot beam reception, that's going to be tricky if I remember correctly. There are various threads on here detailing people's problems with it in Poland. If you are lucky you might just get the "Swedish sidelobe" which would help keep the dish down to more sensible sizes.

These two threads have some reports from Poland:
http://www.satellites.co.uk/forums/threads/astra-2e-central-east-europe-reports.159947/
http://www.satellites.co.uk/forums/threads/astra-2f-central-east-europe-discussion.156872/
 

Mark_C89

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Thanks for both replys.

I found the links useful in understanding some changes and how they effected certain areas, I was also aware of some of the bigger changes in the previous years but wasn't aware of the change earlier this year to 2E.
If I have to install a bigger dish I will however I wouldn't really like to go over 2M because the only place to put that would be the roof no question about it (we have a big garden but the lay out of everything wouldn't warrant a large dish with the foliage and objects in the way).

Worst case scenario here and of course I know this is speculation, What would happen? would I lose pretty much most things? everything? or?
Also after this due change to ASTRA 2G is that going to be it for a long time hopefully? or atleast that's going to be it for anything that would effect my area?

As for the DAVE sd and GOLD, well lately I had some problems with my setup as I mentioned in another thread. However since getting in back up and running again its not really going smoothly! but I am a little scared to fiddle with it anymore incase I lose the lot
 

Lazarus

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Yes, after 2G things should be settled for a few years.
 

timo_w2s

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And the big dish is only needed for the UK spot beam (mainly BBC/ITV/Channel 4, etc). The vast majority of Sky pay channels are on the European beams which easily cover Poland on an 80cm or so sized dish.

Worst case scenario is when 2G comes along they don't bother using the 2G European beam and put more content on the UK beam. However, there will always be plenty of stuff on some of the other European beams, that I'm pretty certain (but annoying if the particular channel you like is not)!
 

Lazarus

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That's the thing, timo_w2s: My assumptions over what might be on which Beam are no doubt the same as yours, but we don't actually know ....................
 

Mark_C89

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Well thanks again for the advice. I will wait and see.

I'm not in any desperate rush, and I'm sure the change to 2G will come soon enough.
However when it comes I'll weigh up what the likeliness of what I will get, Also basing this on other people's dish sizes in Europe and what channels are on the new transponder. If the chance is I can get this content with a larger dish I'll most likely go for it dependent on the size. If the chance is I would not likely receive this at all I won't bother, although I will most likely upgrade to a 1.8M just to improve the quality of the reception of what I'm getting and the occasional fluttering of the channels if you understand what I mean (and improve reception in bad weather).

Dave HD, Watch, HD, Alibi HD and TCM SD are now on the UK spot so it would make sense that you can't receive those on your setup.

What does seem very odd is that you've lost Dave SD and Gold. Something is not right with your setup. These are still transmitting from Astra 2A and have been pretty much from the day they started. Astra 2A should be one of the strongest satellites for you, as the main footprint covers Poland easily on both north and south beams with a standard Sky minidish. Even in Finland I can get Dave SD, Watch SD, Alibi SD, Gold, etc on an 80cm dish.

This is interesting, do you think the dish maybe slightly off a couple of mm possibly?
 

timo_w2s

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This is interesting, do you think the dish maybe slightly off a couple of mm possibly?
Possibly, if I had to guess I'd say the dish was a fraction too far east.

But there are many other possibilities, like damaged/damp/kinked cable, faulty LNB, or faulty receiver that could produce similar issues.
 
A

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This is interesting, do you think the dish maybe slightly off a couple of mm possibly?

to be honest, you need to get hold of a proper satellite meter to check this.

You need to first ascertain that the Azimuth is correct (max Power level).
Then check elevation (again max Power level),
Then LNB in-out placement (if your LNB allows this; some have are so short-necked therer is no room) for max strength and best Carrier-to-Noise-ratio.
Then skew-adjustment (rotation of LNB in holder) to achieve best C/N ratio, and lowest BER.

Your average STB with auto-gain circuitry and "everything-is-relative-to-100%" is not quite enough...
Beg, steal, even borrow one. It's usually worth it.
 

Mark_C89

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to be honest, you need to get hold of a proper satellite meter to check this.

You need to first ascertain that the Azimuth is correct (max Power level).
Then check elevation (again max Power level),
Then LNB in-out placement (if your LNB allows this; some have are so short-necked therer is no room) for max strength and best Carrier-to-Noise-ratio.
Then skew-adjustment (rotation of LNB in holder) to achieve best C/N ratio, and lowest BER.

Your average STB with auto-gain circuitry and "everything-is-relative-to-100%" is not quite enough...
Beg, steal, even borrow one. It's usually worth it.
Possibly, if I had to guess I'd say the dish was a fraction too far east.

But there are many other possibilities, like damaged/damp/kinked cable, faulty LNB, or faulty receiver that could produce similar issues.

Well I will do some investigating as for Azimuth I have a feeling this could be slightly out, as for elevation I think this is correct as there's very small room for error when I was setting elevation. Slightly wrong and if would lose enough signal to lose picture on my box!
My LNB has quite a long enough neck for in-out placement to be adjusted, when I first set this up I had this all the way out and everything was as best as I could get it.
The skew adjustment may also be the culprit as it seems to me to have a lot of room for error on my dish, I could actually turn it quite alot before losing picture on my box (but the skew adjustment for my location is 0.7 so practically straight.

I will somehow get hold of a metre if not now definitely when I see about a future improvement to my set-up
as your right the standard DIY SAT KIT is not quite enough! especially for me when my signal isn't fantastically strong

Thanks Guys
 
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