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Signal/Dish Peaking Question

1371 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  RaymondT
I've been around dishes for some time and my own setup is now acting up and it has me stumped. I have an oval dish with the standard quad LNB. Three lines running into my house, one goes to a 505 and the other two go to a 630. Last week I noticed that on some channels my 630 would lose signal on one of it's tuners. This resulted in the usual problems with the 630. I soon discovered that it was specific channels that were not coming in and by doing some research I found that I had very low signal strength on any vertical transponder from F1. Same was true for my 505 so I knew it wasn't a 630 problem. Since I was getting a good signal from the F1 H I as well as the other satellite I suspected the LNB, so I changed it out with a spare I had. No improvement. Next, up the ladder on Christmas morning with my signal meter. I tuned all three lines to channel 302 CTV HD which is on an F1 V transponder, moved the dish very slightly to the west and a second minor elevation adjust and got a good stong signal from F1. I then checked the other 3 possiblities and found good signals with each. I now have signal levels in the high 70's and db levels of 6.5 to 8 on any channel I select from either satellite. My problem is that since I peaked the dish I am now giving pixalation on all channels with either receiver, any satellite/channel. Before I adjusted I was not getting pixalation, just loss of signal from any F1 V channel. Right now on on Speed HD channel 318 the pixalation is nearly constant. On the status screen line C I have 93,(Echb/No:7.3dB). Now I'm assuming that the a high dB number is better then a lower one? If that is the case I am stumped. Perhaps its time for a service call however any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.
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I peak my dishes every few years using the SF-100 device from SD. What I've found is that the skew is not something easily measured like the azimuth or elevation. So the trick is make sure the mast is absolutely plumb and then set the skew using the guide settings and the numbers imprinted on the backside of the dish. Then forget about it.

Then you can peak the dish and get pretty even results throughout the channels. I use the SF-100 on the recommended channel of 299 and do side-to-side, up-down, then once more side-to-side. A week ago, I got 96 on a 75E and 93 on a 60 dish. Good ebno #'s on all the channels I tried.

You read of all sorts of complaints of pixelization on the new 630's. I noticed this a bit on mine but once I peaked the dish, it's been rock solid. I suspect that's probably a big cause of the complaints. Years of heat cycles on your dish mounts can cause the dish to droop ever so slightly. Peaking a dish is a good maintenance practice.
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