Coax Cables Connector... 2 to 1 input?

Shabangle

Novice Member
Hi all,

I've just moved into the house and have an old tv (with Freeview installed) with a single cable input (male).

However I'm faced with these two cables coming from the wall!

I'm struggling with the info online - apparently this is normal and/or could be connected to a Satellite dish.

I'd really appreciate some advice on 1) a suitable connector I can purchase online to allow this to plug into the back of my TV and 2) whether the connector is just applied to one of the Coax cables... if that's the case do I just leave the other alone?!

Any help really appreciated, my newbiness must be glowing right now 😂

All the best
 

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mikej

Well-known Member
Hi and welcome to the forum. Don't worry - you're not the first to ask this question and probably won't be the last !

As you've read, it's highly likely that those cables are connected to a satellite dish, so you would need a TV or set-top box equipped with a Freesat or satellite tuner in order to pick up any channels.

For a TV equipped with a Freeview tuner like yours, you'll need a terrestrial TV aerial. Have you checked the outside of the house to see if there is one on the roof or chimney ?
 
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ChuckMountain

Distinguished Member
Welcome onboard.

As @mikej stated, those are more than likely to be a feed from a satellite dish.

Assuming the dish is still there, then the cables might well be in full working order. However, unless your TV has an F connector that accepts one of these cables they will not work. While you can physically buy an adapter to plug it in, this will not convert the underlying signal if it is from a satellite dish.

If the TV has one of these inputs you can plug either cable in and then make sure the tuner is set to Freesat and tune the TV in following the manual. (often easier if the TV is connected to the Internet as it will use online data to tune in). The second connector was needed for Sky to allow watch\record more than one program at once.

The other issue is if the previous occupant upgraded to Sky Q (but the cables would normally have slightly different style of connectors) then this won't work with a TV anyway.
 

Shabangle

Novice Member
Thanks for the quick response and great to be on the forums.

Yep, big dish on the side of the house.

It seems to me that for £3 I could take a chance on F connectors such as (Amazon product) and I may get lucky.

If they don't work - is it a job for an electrician to install a normal terrestrial cable?

Cheers All
 

ChuckMountain

Distinguished Member
No those won't work, unfortunately. The linked ones are the wrong gender anyway, you would want this one anyway

Amazon product

What model TV do you have, we can check if it would be compatible.

If you don't have one of the F type female sockets on the back of your TV that would accept the cables you already have without an adapter, it's going to be a waste of money.

It's like putting diesel in a petrol car, you can do it, but it never ends well :nono:

If you don't have an aerial then you would have to get an aerial installer to fit one for you. Just replacing the cable from the dish by an electrician or anybody else is not going to work. Most electricians will not carry the right ladders to do an aerial job at the heights normally involved.
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
Thanks for the quick response and great to be on the forums.

Yep, big dish on the side of the house.

It seems to me that for £3 I could take a chance on F connectors such as (Amazon product) and I may get lucky.

If they don't work - is it a job for an electrician to install a normal terrestrial cable?

Cheers All


The problem isn't the cable. The issue is that the satellite broadcast is a different format to the terrestrial one. The cable and the connectors will carry both, but unless you're picking up the signal from a terrestrial transmitter your TV isn't going to be able to parse it even if you connect it up.

Picking up the signal depends on the design and alignment of the aerial/dish so if your dish is designed and aligned to pick up satellite broadcasts then you either need to replace it with a terrestrial aerial, or get a set top box with a satellite tuner - such as the freesat one.
 

Shabangle

Novice Member
No those won't work, unfortunately. The linked ones are the wrong gender anyway, you would want this one anyway

Amazon product

What model TV do you have, we can check if it would be compatible.

If you don't have one of the F type female sockets on the back of your TV that would accept the cables you already have without an adapter, it's going to be a waste of money.

It's like putting diesel in a petrol car, you can do it, but it never ends well :nono:

If you don't have an aerial then you would have to get an aerial installer to fit one for you. Just replacing the cable from the dish by an electrician or anybody else is not going to work. Most electricians will not carry the right ladders to do an aerial job at the heights normally involved.

Here is the back of the tv and the make (v old model). So it sounds like they can't be joined to the cables and I will need professional help?

Many thanks
 

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Shabangle

Novice Member
The problem isn't the cable. The issue is that the satellite broadcast is a different format to the terrestrial one. The cable and the connectors will carry both, but unless you're picking up the signal from a terrestrial transmitter your TV isn't going to be able to parse it even if you connect it up.

Picking up the signal depends on the design and alignment of the aerial/dish so if your dish is designed and aligned to pick up satellite broadcasts then you either need to replace it with a terrestrial aerial, or get a set top box with a satellite tuner - such as the freesat one.
Hmmm how might I know how the dish is aligned, are there any ways of telling?
Many thanks
 

ChuckMountain

Distinguished Member
Yep no chance, unless you have an aerial already in the house with a connection on the wall or a loose aerial lead then you would need to get an aerial installer.

Are you sure the house doesn't have one already? Do the surrounding houses as you need to make sure you are not living in a dip or something.

Otherwise buy a Freesat box and plug it in the TV via the HDMI cable.
 

Shabangle

Novice Member
Yep no chance, unless you have an aerial already in the house with a connection on the wall or a loose aerial lead then you would need to get an aerial installer.

Are you sure the house doesn't have one already? Do the surrounding houses as you need to make sure you are not living in a dip or something.

Otherwise buy a Freesat box and plug it in the TV via the HDMI cable.
Hi Chuck,
Interesting. There is a regular aerial cable in the top room of the house. So I'm guessing one painful option is a super long extension cable.
I also wondered if a freesat box (cheap/refurbished) isn't a simpler solution than trying to bag an installer's time this close to christmas!!

Many thanks
 

ChuckMountain

Distinguished Member
Yep, extension and joints can be problematic.

No guarantee that the dish is aligned (or even pointed at the right satellite) but it's properly going to be the easiest thing to try. As you say getting somebody out could be a pain in the bum. :)

Just be careful that your TV looks older it might not support 1080P so you would need to make sure the output of the freesat box is set to 1080i or 720P. If you are buying used and it hasn't been reset you might not get a picture.

Good luck :)
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
Hmmm how might I know how the dish is aligned, are there any ways of telling?
Many thanks

It's very unusual to see a dish antennas for terrestrial TV frequencies used in the UK so it's highly unlikely to be for anything other than satellite TV.

If you want to double check with alignment you can generally look around at other houses as in many areas the dishes and aerials will be pointed in different directions (dishes are always southeast, aerial direction will vary across the country depending on where the nearest transmitter is).
 

Shabangle

Novice Member
It's very unusual to see a dish antennas for terrestrial TV frequencies used in the UK so it's highly unlikely to be for anything other than satellite TV.

If you want to double check with alignment you can generally look around at other houses as in many areas the dishes and aerials will be pointed in different directions (dishes are always southeast, aerial direction will vary across the country depending on where the nearest transmitter is).
I'm sure you're right - it was a young couple and it'd be no surprise if they had a freesat/sky box on the go. I've every reason to believe the dish/cables are fully working so will pursue a solution that works for the cables.

Thanks for your help
 

Shabangle

Novice Member
Yep, extension and joints can be problematic.

No guarantee that the dish is aligned (or even pointed at the right satellite) but it's properly going to be the easiest thing to try. As you say getting somebody out could be a pain in the bum. :)

Just be careful that your TV looks older it might not support 1080P so you would need to make sure the output of the freesat box is set to 1080i or 720P. If you are buying used and it hasn't been reset you might not get a picture.

Good luck :)
Cheers Chuck - I'm confident the dish is fully operational - the TV was on during the viewing!

I'm tempted to buy a new TV or at the least the Freesat box. Would something like this receive the cables I have? Amazon product

And is it common for TVs (with Freesat built in) to have the required inputs?

Many Thanks, and all the best
 

ChuckMountain

Distinguished Member
That's good on the TV, the only other issue is if they had Sky Q (which has a new LNB, the bit at the end) but I suspect from those connectors it won't. If you can get a picture of the dish and LNB (the bit at the end) might be possible to check

The higher model TV's will often have a Freesat connection built-in but you can check the specs. I would imagine you get a better Programme guide on the TV and it will be quicker.
 

Shabangle

Novice Member
That's good on the TV, the only other issue is if they had Sky Q (which has a new LNB, the bit at the end) but I suspect from those connectors it won't. If you can get a picture of the dish and LNB (the bit at the end) might be possible to check

The higher model TV's will often have a Freesat connection built-in but you can check the specs. I would imagine you get a better Programme guide on the TV and it will be quicker.
Righto - just so I'm clear - a TV with a Freesat connection will have inputs that those cables should plug directly into, whereas others would need a box like the one I showed (and as such would lose the benefit of the in-built TV guide)

Having perused TVs on Amazon/Argos, they don't appear to reference Freesat cables on the inputs. Would something like this would be suitable? Amazon product
Just a bit annoying as they don't have pictures of the inputs on the back! Is there a name for these cable inputs?

Many Thanks
 

ChuckMountain

Distinguished Member
Yes, it will typically have one input that one of the cables can plug into (doesn't matter which).

Satellite input is normally an f type connector and uses a DVB-S/S2 tuner.

This one at Argos claims to have one


Just be careful buying at the lower end of the market as there is some real crud out there. That 32" isn't even full HD and often they have issues like bad off-angle viewing.
 

mikej

Well-known Member
TVs with in-built satellite tuners (for Freesat) have 'DVB-S2/S' listed in their specifications.

So the LG TV you linked to is listed as having...

Terrestrial DVB-T2/T (for the Freeview channels)
Satellite DVB-S2/S (for satellite/Freesat channels)

It's always worth checking on the manufacturer's website, as retailers spec tables are often wrong.

LG TVs do generally still seem to support Freesat, while other manufacturers like Panasonic (who still have certain models with a DVB-S2/S tuner) don't, so it's always worth double-checking. Those without official Freesat support will lack an EPG, which is obviously less than ideal.

You would only need to use one of those cables for any TVs with a single satellite tuner, but I would get in touch with the previous occupants if you can and find out whether they had Sky Q because if they did, using the dish for Freesat will incur additional hassle and cost with an LNB change, as previously mentioned.
 

mikej

Well-known Member
I'm tempted to buy a new TV or at the least the Freesat box. Would something like this receive the cables I have? Amazon product

If you want an easy life, I would avoid cheap boxes like that like the plague.

You should either stick to a Freesat box from a recognised manufacturer such as Manhattan (£49 @ Argos) or a better option would be to put the money towards a newer TV with Freesat built-in, such as the LG model you linked to.

As for that LG 32LM637B, they also do a 1080p version but it's a bit more expensive @ £250 and (annoyingly) limited to Currys at the moment - LG 32LM6370.

FWIW, I bought LG's 28" smart TV/monitor hybrid for the bedroom recently and it's been much better than I was expecting. While small, cheap TVs like this are clearly far from ideal in terms of movie viewing, for day-to-day TV watching, the picture quality on the HD channels is surprisingly good. Just be aware that many LG models (including the one I bought) have occasional memory issues when watching apps - mine only does this occasionally and only with Netflix, but it's worth bearing in mind. A cheap streaming stick would solve the problem.
 

Shabangle

Novice Member
Hi All, yes to be clear I am simply after the easy life here!! :)

I think Chuck and Mikej you are essentially saying the same thing - don't go with the cheapest, the Manhattan is the minimum standard for box OR provided the spec from the brand has DVB-S2/S I should be good to plug in one of those cables to a new TV.

I'm still wondering whether 32in or 40in best for my space but with the above steer I am much more confident.

Really appreciated, all the best
 

mikej

Well-known Member
If you can afford it, upgrading to a modern TV with an in-built Freesat tuner really will be your easiest option - just one box to turn on and one remote for starters !

The coax SPDIF (RCA) audio-out socket on the rear of your Hitachi TV probably dates it back to the mid to late 2000s so you've definitely had your money's worth from that set ! :D

Please don't forget about the potential dish issue though - if you're able to confirm that the previous occupants had a working SkyHD (not Sky Q) set-up, then you stand a much better chance at a successful / plug-and-play outcome with no additional cost.
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
Bear in mind that terrestrial broadcasts are better supported so I'd only go for the satellite if it's a fairly easy option - buying a box.

If you end up replacing the TV or modifying the dish with a different receiver then you may be better just biting the bullet and getting a terrestrial aerial fitted.
 

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