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Sky Digital problems- any advice?

Discussion in 'Sky Digital TV Forum' started by Alan Paterson, Jun 20, 2002.

  1. Alan Paterson

    Alan Paterson
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    We had Sky Digital installed about a week ago and compared to our NTL analog cable recepetion it is stunning. It's like watching DVDs all the time, so we're happy with that.
    We went for the full package- Movies. Sport etc £37/month deal.
    Two nights ago we started losing channels. I called Sky and they asked me to switch the box off and on to clear any static build up. This appeared to work, but today the same channels are missing again. The on screen message says ' No sattelite signal is being received'. The odd one channel says 'There is a technical fault with this channel, please try later'.
    I phoned Sky who have booked an engineer to call on 24th June (4 days time).
    It seems odd that it's not affecting all the channels.
    Any of you experienced hands ever seen this before?
    Alan
     
  2. bob007

    bob007
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    Try a re boot,

    * Put digibox in stand-by
    * Remove viewing card
    * Unplug from the mains and wait 15/20 seconds
    * Plug back in and wait for 1 minute
    * Turn on and wait for message "insert viewing card"

    If problem persists may be a faulty box/dish alignment/lnb

    As you have an engineer coming out he should be able to locate the problem * fingers crosed*

    On occasions my digibox went a bit loopy when first installed, but settled down after a while.

    bob
     
  3. Alan Paterson

    Alan Paterson
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    Bob,
    Thanks for the reply.
    Will give it a go.
    Alan
     
  4. markannis

    markannis
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    I have just recently experienced the same problem this week with my setup. I will be interested to hear how you get on...

    My problem sounds exactly the same as you described - interestingly I never seem to lose any of the MTV channels.

    Do you have any trees that could be getting in the way of the signal, when I had Sky installed two months back the enginer said they might cause problems.
     
  5. Alan Paterson

    Alan Paterson
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    Markannis,
    We don't seem to have a tree problem.
    Has your problem been resolved?
    Which Digibox do you have?
    Mine's a Grundig
    I think it must be a box problem as it was okay when installed. I suspect a component issue.
    Alan
     
  6. markannis

    markannis
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    Hi Cougar

    No my problems with sky has not been solved - the channels still seem to come and go as they like and I can not recreate the fault myself. If the problems continues this weekend I will be calling Sky for an engineer.

    I have a Pace box which has worked fine for the last two months. Recently though I have noticed the odd occation when the sound drops out for a split second - maybe the box is faulty. Or maybe its an atmospheric condition, I think Sky can be effected by heavy rain, - maybe my dish doesn't like it too sunny either...

    Mark
     
  7. Alan Paterson

    Alan Paterson
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    Markannis,
    I've noticed the occasional sound dropout on mine too, but it's only for a split second. I've checked that my dish hasn't moved and it's rock solid. There doesn't appear to be any obstruction.
    Today for a while, I got no satellite signal at all on any channel. I switched off and later on I got them all back including the ones I'd originally lost.
    Now, tonight, I've got the same old ones missing again.
    Isn't technology wonderful?
    Alan
     
  8. Mario Nicholas

    Mario Nicholas
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    the dish size 44cm is only just sufficient, there is negligable margin for poor weather, which is a calculated margin in the decision to use the dish size. Its was calculated by the marketing dept. not the engineers.
    Poor installation by the majority of "engineers" is generally to blame for digital drop-out.
    Poor alignment - cheap cable - connectors not crimped/waterproofed properly - insufficient centre core protruding from the f connector - tight bend radius on cable - lnb orientation - the list goes on...
    The easiest solution to most problems with Sky digital is to use the 60cm dish. check your signal level & quality in the menu.
    14 years as a commercial satellite engineer & that bit of advice is FOC
     
  9. Doubledoom

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    South of manchester the minidish should be fine.

    It is probable that the dish is slightly out of alignment.
     
  10. Mario Nicholas

    Mario Nicholas
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    The signal in London is fine with a 44cm dish, except in poor weather, electrical interferance, slight mis-alignment situations. The smaller the dish diameter the wider the beamwidth it looks at, hence when you increase the dish to a 60cm it is harder to mis-align & a good margin for poor weather is introduced.
    The majority of installers are using hand held meters, not spectrum analysers & are earning peanuts, their main concern is to leave within 45 minutes, hence problems occur.
     
  11. markannis

    markannis
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    HI

    I check my signal level & quality in the menu often and its usually around the 80% mark (the engineer who installed it said this was very good?). When I do lose channels, the signal level/quality is still at the 80% mark, I haven't lost any channels in the last 48 hours, so maybe things have sorted themselves out? But I still have the sound drop outs - most noticable are Sky 1 and Sky Sports 1 in the evenings...

    As for heavy rain - the signal level & quality goes down but I have never lost channels or had picture break up in the rain.

    Mark
     
  12. Alan Paterson

    Alan Paterson
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    I've checked my signal level and quality, but there is no indication at all on either - and it says it is not locked, yet we now have some channels back.
    This is all new territory for me and it's doing my head in.
    I hope the engineer fixes it on Monday. At least with NTL we had consistent channels , even if the quality was awful.
    Alan
     
  13. m@rk

    m@rk
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    I had a similar problem when I first got Sky (and it took months to get it sorted) with channels dropping out even though the signal strength was good.

    After an email to the board of directors (yes I found their email addresses), I got a visit from a 'head engineer' who travelled from Scotland to West Yorkshire to see me.

    He put a meter on the dish and said the strength was really low and that actually there are 2 different things the check power of the signal (horizontal and vertical I think) and that the on screen signal meter only showed one of them.

    A little bit more digging revealed a tree about 600 yards that was just getting in the way but only when the wind was blowing in a certain direction. All the other engineers (7 of them) had missed this.

    So don't just believe what the on screen signal meter is telling you. It only shows half of what is really going on.
     
  14. Mario Nicholas

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    if the signal strength & quality are 70/80% with a standard dish (ie: 44cm in London) then the lnb is the problem, change it.

    The receivers vary in their level indications, one may measure 50% change it for another make & it will show 75%, so this is a difficult comparison.

    If a tree is blowing across the signal path, your signal level will go up & down.

    If you want a good satellite engineer to rectify faults, a CAI member will have the necessary meter to fix it.
     
  15. markannis

    markannis
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    Thanks for the advice guys,

    I do live on the edge of a forest, and I expect that when the wind blows certain trees are effecting the signal. However since I have gone another day without losing channels, I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

    Mark
     
  16. Alan Paterson

    Alan Paterson
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    Chaps.
    The man from Sky Digital came today, looked at the lack of signal and said, " Oh yeah, LNB fault- I'll soon fix that".
    10 minutes later I had all my channels back.
    He just replaced the LNB, binned the old one and with a hearty 'Hi-yo Silver awaaaay" he was gone. Problem solved.
    Alan
     

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