Lost Freesat Channels since since adding a Mux. Lost as to why?

chalk40

Distinguished Member
Morning all, I have a long installed garage roof mounted sat dish fitted with an Octo. Worked a treat for years.

But we needed more feeds so I was advised to get a Mux and take 4 of those feeds into the Mux and 16 out.

This worked well but since doing that, certain channels have disappeared e.g. Quest, Sky News and a few of those documentary type channels. I don't know why.

I had the dish and terminations checked last week with an Horizon box and the guy said they were absolutely perfect and strong. He found one questionable termination and remade that off.

Just to note I still have 8 feeds connected to the Octo but I'm only using the 4 into the Mux.

I've attached a couple of pics of the Mux. I'm told it's an OK one. There is a bad cable on the RHS that needs re-terminating you can see but it's just a line out to one of the TV's. The input feeds at the top look solid.

I'm wandering if anyone can help as to why the missing channels? The sat guy who came to check said he'd heard that polarity can cause a problem and that Sky News was at the top end of the range. but he didn't really know how to progress further than that.

Appreciate any help or knowledge anyone has on this one. It's been like it over a year and I've managed make no progress.
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Rodders53

Distinguished Member
As I Understand It:
Mux = Multiplex usually.
You have a Multiswitch.


Multiswitch inputs from the lnb have an insertion loss of -2dB +/- 2 dB (= 0dB to -4dB)

Advice with using a multiswitch is to go up one dish size cf the LNB alone (due to those insertion losses). http://www.satcure.co.uk/tech/multiswitches.htm

An installer with a meter with no idea - must have arrived on a horse with chamois leathers on the ladder? What signal levels and Carrier to Noise figures?

The pics aren't too clear but #7 cable connector ain't at right angles so cross-threaded at best. I can't see the LNB input cables at all.

Cable losses are higher at higher frequencies:
Quest/+1, Quest Red/+1 in SD are on 12382 H
Sky News SD is on 12207 V

They are some of the highest frequencies

Possibly try the 'spares' from the Octo as alternative inputs on the Hi H & V inputs to the multiswitch. Especially if any are the thin WF65 type rather than WF 100.

I'm not sure if a quad LNB would have a better signal out or improved C/N figure over an octo (others may advise accurately). But a bigger Zone 2 dish cf a Zone 1 should improve signal levels and reduce noise.
Fine LNB Skew adjustment can help with H/V crosstalk (noise) issues, too.
 

chalk40

Distinguished Member
Quality advice Sir .... that's a great work through list.

And indeed we have the space put a bigger dish with ease and will do exactly that. Do you have a larger Zone 2 dish you might recommend?

The link you kindly sent I think (ages back) was indeed the very source I read to source the multi-switch .... and yes it is a multi switch you are right ... not sure where I got multiplexer from.

Yes trying the alternatives on the Octo is also an excellent idea. Will do that, we know all 8 are solid even though one was found poor last inspection.

Yes the switch has a couple of poorer quality connections on it .... added as temps at speed and they should be re-terminated. I will work through that as well. That area is awaiting to be properly racked up .... a Winter project I've been promising to do for several years. This year will be the year.

I also wandered about the Octo. I'd prefer keep it if possible as it feeds other areas but if it was the case an Octo might provide a better signal then of course we could change it.

I will check the LNB input cables. They are all WF100 but again a re- termination might be in order ... a couple of the inputs whilst looking solid have some strain on them .... they bend a little more than might be ideal.

Brilliant, as I say a great list be working through. I appreciate you taking the time do that. As I say if you do know of a better dish that would be great as well. I don't mind to spend a bit to step up some. Has been plaguing me ages this one.

Thanks again


Rodders hi again, yes it was Satcure we bought all our bits from to do this. They have shut a good while back .... shame as they were a really good one stop.

Do you know anyone else you can recommend who provide a similar one stop service for components etc?

Cheers
 

grahamlthompson

Distinguished Member
Quality advice Sir .... that's a great work through list.

And indeed we have the space put a bigger dish with ease and will do exactly that. Do you have a larger Zone 2 dish you might recommend?

The link you kindly sent I think (ages back) was indeed the very source I read to source the multi-switch .... and yes it is a multi switch you are right ... not sure where I got multiplexer from.

Yes trying the alternatives on the Octo is also an excellent idea. Will do that, we know all 8 are solid even though one was found poor last inspection.

Yes the switch has a couple of poorer quality connections on it .... added as temps at speed and they should be re-terminated. I will work through that as well. That area is awaiting to be properly racked up .... a Winter project I've been promising to do for several years. This year will be the year.

I also wandered about the Octo. I'd prefer keep it if possible as it feeds other areas but if it was the case an Octo might provide a better signal then of course we could change it.

I will check the LNB input cables. They are all WF100 but again a re- termination might be in order ... a couple of the inputs whilst looking solid have some strain on them .... they bend a little more than might be ideal.

Brilliant, as I say a great list be working through. I appreciate you taking the time do that. As I say if you do know of a better dish that would be great as well. I don't mind to spend a bit to step up some. Has been plaguing me ages this one.

Thanks again


Not all multiswitches can use a universal lnb. If your is not one of these you will need to replace the lnb with a quattro lnb.

EDIT

Yours is OK. Supports quattro and quad lnbs.

https://cpc.farnell.com/triax/31812...PING&s_kwcid=AL!5616!3!224680055011!!!network}!836055798603!&gclid=CjwKCAjwgOGCBhAlEiwA7FUXkp8kD8ABj40p4SNI71QtblYUYtLcxUHsXwaBFmB0NNCaG_8dqe92-RoCptUQAvD_BwE
 

chalk40

Distinguished Member
Not all multiswitches can use a universal lnb. If your is not one of these you will need to replace the lnb with a quattro lnb.

Graham hi there .... I remember you from the Humax.org days. :)

Ok also useful data. And would you know of a switch lnb combo that does play well together? I don't mind replacing or upgrading to rid of this problem.

The switch currently being used is this one ....

thumbnail_DSC_0414.jpg
 

grahamlthompson

Distinguished Member
Graham hi there .... I remember you from the Humax.org days. :)

Ok also useful data. And would you know of a switch lnb combo that does play well together? I don't mind replacing or upgrading to rid of this problem.

The switch currently being used is this one ....

View attachment 1480478

I have checked the switch spec. It should work OK with a properly aligned zone 2 dish and a quad lnb. Do you need 8 outputs to support other legacy kit. You can cascade multiswitches to get more outputs.
 

chalk40

Distinguished Member
I have checked the switch spec. It should work OK with a properly aligned zone 2 dish and a quad lnb. Do you need 8 outputs to support other legacy kit. You can cascade multiswitches to get more outputs.

Many thanks Graham.

Not essential to have the 8 .... that was more when I fed them to the office node zero and then routed them out to rooms and wall plates.

We ran out of lines then installed the switch but did not upgrade the dish.

The extra lines from the Octo are useful but not essential if we can add switches.

There is a locational benefit in having an individual line from the Octo to an odd ball location of the property but not essential.

I think the dish that's installed at present is a 60cm entry level one. A zone 2 one is larger. Can you recommend a supplier and model that will be a good quality fit and forget one?

Thanks for the research Graham
 

Rodders53

Distinguished Member
Hang on. That's drip-feeding information by omission.

How long have you had this kit? As you say Satcure ceased trading FOUR years ago.

It was working all ok, as installed back then up until recently?
I'd doubt the Triax Multiswitch can be bettered significantly (if at all?)

Look at dish obstruction? Tree growth may be part obstructing the view and affecting higher frequencies most?

Dish alignment and /or damage? (We've had storms. strong winds and lots of rain.)
Cable damage/aging/uv degradation letting water in etc.,.
Sharply kinked cables can cause reflections and odd frequency selective things so as it's (relatively) cheap to replace bits do consider that - especially at the time of tidying up the install as you plan.

Triax $ky dishes used to have a better than average reputation, but I'm too long out of the game to give any other suggestion.

NB If this 'problem' has appeared due to 'new receivers' being introduced - suspect 'deafer' tuners cf what they replaced?
 

chalk40

Distinguished Member
No, no I did say 'long installed' in my opening line of opening post. Yes I guess 10 years back for the dish and Octo (more in fact) and for the switch maybe 2015 ish. Same feeds.

No, no, the missing channels were after the switch installed. For sure it's related to the switch going in. And I have not re-visited until now.

Yes the dish was blown last Summer and we lost all channels. Is why the guy came to check, test and adjust. So we are back to majority of channels fine and the same issue that was introduced at the time of the switch going in.

No there is no dish obstruction. It's on a garage roof with a large heavy slab 4 way stand. And the Octo and terminations are solid as mentioned. Again is what was checked over ... we had one suspect but that was not connected to the switch and is now fixed.

The input wired are definitely under a little stress though. They look fine but are twisted.

Apols not fully understanding your last line there.
 

Rodders53

Distinguished Member
<Drip> So it's always been an inadequate installation. (One tends to assume that a post seeking help is due to something recently changing... you can ignore the last para of my previous post as nothing has recently changed.)

Please confirm that with the octo outs direct to the receiver (i.e. no switch losses) you have no problem with the high frequency TV channels you listed, and the switch losses (of 2-4 dB) are the problem?

Hi band is 1,100 – 2,150 MHz in the cable cf Lo band 950 – 1,950 MHz. Coaxial Cable Specifications WF100 CT100 WF65 RG6 gives some numbers, so longer cable lengths will be important and adding to the problem.

How long would you estimate for each cable from LNB to switch and also from switch to receiver(s) as both will introduce loss?

The Triax manual Page 3 for your switch:

Installation:
 First rule in any Multiswitch installation are: NEVER use a too small size satellite Dish, and
 NEVER use the compromise of a dual mount LNB for a multi satellite position reception on one Dish.
 Correct Dish size for each position ensures sufficient reserves in bad weather conditions and the best possible C/N for the rest of the installation. Making compromises here CANNOT be fixed later in the network by adding Amplifiers!
 A High Gain LNB only gives more Signal Level, but not Signal Quality.
That only comes from Dish Size!

LOCATION? Within the UK or out ???

A larger dish (needing more accurate alignment) should have been the installers' first suggestion to improve signal and noise.
Satellite reception ain't rocket science (unlike getting them into orbit); but some installers, confronted with anything "unusual" are as useful as chocolate teapots.

You may be best to bite the bullet and get a pro multi-dwelling type installer in to advise? It may require a larger circular dish (80 cm to 1 metre) with quattro LNB on a 'patio mount' on a garage roof may be too prone to wind movement and also need upgrading; but may be the best way forward?

There are one or two satellite installation specialists that come here from time to time and I hope they may comment, soon.
 

chalk40

Distinguished Member
No I was that I reasonably clear I think Rodders .... this was my opening text of the thread ....

"I have a long installed garage roof mounted sat dish fitted with an Octo. Worked a treat for years.
But we needed more feeds so I was advised to get a Mux and take 4 of those feeds into the Mux and 16 out. This worked well but since doing that, certain channels have disappeared e.g. Quest, Sky News and a few of those documentary type channels. I don't know why
"

But if it came across confusing then apologies.

Is a good point .... yes I will test the Octo direct to TV (avoiding the switch) and report back. Yes is a great test.

Distances are quite long ... would estimate 12 meters from dish to connection point. Then similar again to TV. The switch has not introduced any extra length to runs. The position of the switch was were the coax's were connected .... plan was to put them into a patch panel together with all other audio and data .... and indeed still is later on.

Yes UK Midlands .... with good line of site but dish is only 60cm.

In fairness to the guy testing and checking, he was not tasked to look at the channels, (in retrospect I should have done) just to realign and check connections and signals. Apparently these were strong.

Would be very happy upgrade dish and/or mount if it's required. Absolutely no problem to that ... or indeed any of the components.

It was one of those jobs that we just lived with instead of drilling down better at the time. Is true to say we should have done that.

Appreciate your time and suggestions again and you given me some more to work through again tomorrow. many thanks
 

chalk40

Distinguished Member
Thought I'd feedback with the results of the corrective work in case it's helpful to others.

It wasn't the dish nor the installation or cables lengths.

It was as suspected all along the the Octo which of course should have been a quad but a quad with the High and Low connections incorrectly made.

Pleasing in a way that it was not my internal wiring but frustrating I put up with it for so long.

So it seems be (for anyone seeing similar) that the LNB being a decent quality Quad and connected correctly will be the most likely cause.

But many thanks for those helping me work through the problem to the solution. All good learning stuff.
 

chalk40

Distinguished Member
I use 4 core coloured cable (plastic covered) which makes it much simpler.
Have to say, that would have been by far the best way to go Repassac.

I didn't realise at the time on connecting up that there was any difference between the 4 wires to be honest.

Think I will heat shrink some coloured sleeve on. I'd hate to go through that painful loop again.
 

chalk40

Distinguished Member
Good idea - remember to do both ends.

Here is what I use from (I am in France) 4 X 17PAtC 100 dB ELBAC CABLE

100% that .... yes and before I forget ... with good intentions :)

That cable would have been great to have used and interesting to be aware of.

It's unlikely I will do the installation here again but at another location, very likely, and would definitely go with that.

I really did not understand the importance of the colours before. And probably just have been lucky previously.
 

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