Sky+ problems

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djidave

Guest
Hi all

I have gone through this forum looking for answers but I am still unsure what to do next.

The layout of my system is Dish-Quad LNB-2 cables-Wall socket-2small cables-SKy+ box (Thomson)

The main problem I am having is that recordings keep loosing sound and the picture becomes jumpy. The system was installed 4 weeks ago and for the first 2 weeks there were no problems, now 1 in 2 recordings have problems, 1 in 3 are just unwatchable. I have re-aligned the dish to get maximum signal. The signal strength for both channels is around 10% but the signal quality is about 80%!! I have swapped the channels over between the wall socket and the sky+ box and still getting it on the recordings. The software update earlier this week hasn't changed anything, apart from a major delay between pressing remote button and see something on screen. The live stream has got a little worse but not as bad as recordings.

I can't/haven't done a full system reset yet (too much stuff on HD), whould this make a massive amount of difference? The wall socket is a DIY type thing, how much would this effect it (maplin wallplate with sky and RF, then added second sky)

The box itself is from eBay, could it be a HD fault or box fault? The other problem is a major delay for channel changes, etc.

Thanks for any assistance

Dave R
 

pete252

Standard Member
Hello djidave, I'm new to this forum as well.

The signal strength of 10% is a bit worrying, I would check the satellite cable for shorts - i.e. 'whiskers' from the braid touching the inner core at each connector.

The latest software update will not be helping things - my box is really playing up, I thought the hard drive was failing. Bought a new one but not installed it because I now think it's due to the update, from reading on this forum.

Keep us updated on how you get on.

Pete
 
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djidave

Guest
Just an update, have checked dish and wiring and all seem ok, so pluged old standard box in and have 70% strength & 80%+ Quality on both channels, where as Sky+ box reports 15% strength & 80% Quality on both.

Also if I plug normal ariel RF cable into Sky+ box it interferes with the signal from the sky to the TV (as i use RF because sky remote can't put TV on AV).

Could this be a dodgy box, I bought it from eBay so is there any way I can someone to look at it? It is an Amstrad DRX180, I am reasonably technical and looking inside everything seems to be where it should.

%Thanks

Dave R
 
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djidave

Guest
I have also noted that the fan doesn't seem to be working, should it always be running or just when the unit gets hot?
 

nick270881

Active Member
It is possible that it is the box, bought blind as such, it could have been faulty / refurbished / anything!

Seriously consider the wall sockets though! The cables from the dish sould go DIRECTLY into the back of the box, many wall sockets can cause sharp bends in the cable, and for a start you are introducing a join in the system, Joins = Attenuation!!

My advice would be first to get it re-cabled with no wall plate, Properly installed cabling with wall grommits can look neater than a plate anyway!

Many people assume that as soon as you have a problem that it is the box straight away, when more often than not it is something else causing it!

If it was installed for you then it should be under warranty, get someone out to replace the lnb, check dish allignment, if not then you may have to fork out some extra money!!
 
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djidave

Guest
The box could have been refurbed. It is only 1 join in the cable and as I have said above this has been tested with a standard SKY system and has good signal strength and quality.

I didn't assume it was the box, I checked all other parts first before doing reset on box etc.

I installed the second line, the first was done by SKY about 3 months back under standard install, but my warrenty ran out on original SKY equipment last month, I presume this wouldn't have covered the new SKY+ ox anyway.

The dish is aligned fine (as checked by other system), LNB seems to be fine as well.

Thanks anyway

Dave R
 

Nick_UK

Banned
nick270881 said:
It is possible that it is the box, bought blind as such, it could have been faulty / refurbished / anything!

Seriously consider the wall sockets though! The cables from the dish sould go DIRECTLY into the back of the box, many wall sockets can cause sharp bends in the cable, and for a start you are introducing a join in the system, Joins = Attenuation!!
Joins are only a problem on extreme length cable runs. I have a 15 metre cable run on both Sky+ boxes, and both cable runs terminate in wall boxes, and the Sky boxes are connected to the wall via short cables. So, I have sharp bends, and joins, and have no problems at all. I repeat - unless the cable run is extreme (more than 30 metres) or the cables are inferior quality, bends and joins will have no effect whatsoever.
 

SamRadford

Novice Member
Nick_UK said:
unless the cable run is extreme (more than 30 metres) or the cables are inferior quality, bends and joins will have no effect whatsoever.
Forgive me for being blunt but this is rubbish. Any discontinuity in the cable can cause signal reflections that can partly or totally cancel out specific GHz frequencies coming from the LNB. The usual effect is total loss of one or more bouquets. This reflection can occur regardless of cable length. If you'd like to test it, just smack your coaxial cable once with a hammer. You'll find that specific frequencies are affected, but not all.

But, having clarified that point, it's obviously not the case here because a standard Digibox is working fine and no bouquets are missing. It seems to me that the Amstrad is at fault but the simple way to be sure is to connect it to a friend's dish system and test it.
 

Nick_UK

Banned
SamRadford said:
Forgive me for being blunt but this is rubbish. Any discontinuity in the cable can cause signal reflections that can partly or totally cancel out specific GHz frequencies coming from the LNB. The usual effect is total loss of one or more bouquets. This reflection can occur regardless of cable length. If you'd like to test it, just smack your coaxial cable once with a hammer. You'll find that specific frequencies are affected, but not all.
Well, I suppose that's the difference between quoting stuff verbatim from text books and 40 years experience working in the broadcast and electronics industry, including 23 years as a radio amateur. I'm well aware of what reflections in cables can do, and to my knowledge nobody was talking about smacking cables with hammers !

What we were talking about were the effects of joining cables, which (if the correct connectors are used) will just add a couple of dB's attenuation to the signal, which on short to medium cable runs is going to have no effect at all.
 
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av2diefor

Guest
A joint or two makes no difference, iv'e done dozens to no detriment at all.

Its been covered before on here, we all have our own ideas but in practise it works!

Cables need to be terminated , otherwise they are no use, a wall plate is a joint, as Nick says use the right parts to join it and thats it.
 
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