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Old 07-01-2018, 05:48 AM   #1
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Advice please-Portable satellite dish antenna for Direct TV

I would like to take my home receiver on the road with me. I see there are many options for the portable antenna. From the basic dish on a tripod to Star Wars-looking domes. I humbly solicit your advice. Thanks.
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Old 07-01-2018, 06:50 AM   #2
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I ended up purchasing a refurbished King Dish Tailgater. Point the handle of the dishto the North with a clear view of the SouthWest sky and let it finds the satellites. The King Tailgater also has two cable leads so with two receivers I can watch two different channels in the lounge and the bedroom as long as the channels are on the same satellite. We also use the pay-as-you-go Dish plan and only pay for the months that we use the trailer.
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Old 07-01-2018, 08:45 AM   #3
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Back in the days of analog TV, I carried a simple dish on a stand. Now with the advent of HD, the dish has to find more than one satellite, making hand aiming complicated. I agree with the automatic dome type. Even on the ground.
Be aware, and correct me if I'm wrong, but providers use "spot beam" transponders, so you won't get local channels once you move out of your home area. Taking your home receiver is best kept quiet from Direct TV. They'd like to sell you a separate plan.
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Old 07-01-2018, 09:12 AM   #4
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i bought a Winegard x2 and portable Dish Network receiver combo. First time I set it up felt like Skynet was here - just with the coaxial cable for power, the dish automatically finds the satellites - amazing.

Now that I've had it for awhile, 2 gripes; 1) every time the receiver goes unused for a period of time (a month?) the Dish network forgets it exists, and you have to contact them to send some sort of signal to require service. Often the mobile service where we're camped is suspect, so this becomes annoying. Not a problem if you use it regularly. Not sure if this is a problem for Direct TV receivers.

2) Local channels can be a pain (linked to your account), which only matter for me when I'm trying to watch sports. As has been mentioned, you can get over air HD signals in some places.
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Old 07-01-2018, 10:55 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by WkendWarrior View Post
Not sure if this is a problem for Direct TV receivers.
It is. A friend has a second location, and he has to call Direct TV and claim he lost power or something and they reset the receiver.
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Old 07-01-2018, 01:19 PM   #6
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Anyone reccomend boltimg a dish on? I can’t imagine bolting anything to the roof.
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Old 07-01-2018, 02:18 PM   #7
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The original post asks about satellite dishes for DirecTV. My experience is only with DirecTV, so I can only comment on DirecTV.

If the box you intend to take in your Airstream is standard definition, you can buy one of those single LNB “round” satellite dishes for about $50. Then in the satellite box setup menu, make sure that you select “round” dish. Manual setup is very easy with standard definition, as only a single satellite is needed.

If the box you intend to take in your Airstream is hi-definition, it gets a little more complex, more expensive, and a little more difficult to setup at your campsite. As to your question, look at your box, the one you want to take from home, and check the "H" number on the box. When you're shopping, make sure that the dish is compatible with whatever "H" number that is on your satellite box (e.g., H25, H24, etc). Then when you travel, make sure the designated dish "shape" in the satellite box setup menu matches the satellite dish shape that you use in your Airstream.

In either standard def or hi-def, if it is an activated box, there is no need to call DirecTV. You might lose local channels, depending upon where you travel. If you're using a dedicated box in your Airstream, it is easy and inexpensive to turn it on and off over the phone with DirecTV.

I use standard def in my Airstream. I called Winegard, and they advised me that they did not make an RV model dish that would work with my hi-def box (H25), except their pricey, $1,500+), automatic dish. So, for now, I'm sticking with manual, standard def in the trailer. It is easy to setup, and with a small screen, the standard definition is satisfactory.

While Winegard told me that they don't make a RV model other than their expensive automatic model that is compatible with my H25 box, they may well make a "home" version HD dish that could be placed on a tripod and manually set up. Also, Winegard is not the only dish manufacturer. I didn't give that serious consideration because I didn't want to get into the gymnastics of manually finding multiple satellites. There are often trees where we take our Airstream, so it's possible that not all 3 satellites can be tuned in at a given RV site; consequently, some channels could be lost.

I hope this helps.
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Old 07-02-2018, 09:29 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Planenut View Post
Anyone reccomend boltimg a dish on? I can’t imagine bolting anything to the roof.
I have Dish and decided not to put it on the roof because the receiver has to be able to "see" the satellites. I just use a 20' cable and move it to where it gets good reception. Now I have filled the roof with solar panels so I would have had to remove it to place the solar panels up there. I also carry two 100 watt portable solar panels in case there are too many trees overhead. Works for me!
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Old 07-02-2018, 11:49 AM   #9
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King Quest

I have a King Quest for my Directv. I think the King Tailgater is for Dish. They also have a combo adapter that lets you get Dish, Bell and DTV.

The Quest is easy enough to set up and does find the sat if you have a view of the sat, but I never seem to with trees and all and now leave it home. It was an expensive and frustrating experiment, It also doesn't work if you add cable length to extend your placement capability.

I was also having issues with the OEM cable so I bought a heavier R6 one and it worked fine.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

My Quest can only "see" Sat 101 which is SD channels, which is fine but you have to have an SD capable receiver. I think you need one that is non-SWM.

My receiver has to go through a 20 minute set up everytime the power is off which is every day I travel. This is also a pain and also why I leave it at home collecting dust.

Need to list it on eBay.
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Old 07-02-2018, 12:28 PM   #10
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I have been taking my home DirecTV receiver in my rig for a number of years. My dish is a Winegard Carryout G2+ and the cable box is an HR24.

I use the Winegard app to find the birds. When selecting a site I use it to see if the site has visibility. If assigned a site, I use it to place the dish. It makes life much easier.

My home settings and trailer settings are different so I have both taped to the top of my cable box. Changing settings is not difficult but does take some time. My HR24-100 box recently failed and it was replaced with an HR24-400. The big difference is that if you have a SWM switch (home) the box will automatically change to the correct satellite settings. If the switch is manual (trailer, all Winegard Carryouts are multi switch) you have to manually load the settings.


The Carryout G2+ requires RG6 Quad Shield cable and does not like going thru a splitter. I ended up adding a separate cable input to the trailer specifically for the satellite. I reserve the original sat in for park cable.


After enduring manual dishes which sometimes worked like magic and sometimes were extremely frustrating I am extremely happy with my current setup. I must add that I used the manual dishes before the apps that locate the birds so current experience may be different.


As for DirecTV I have talked to several technical representatives concerning various issues being very clear that the box is moving from the house to the rig and back. To a one they have no problem with that and want to make sure it works correctly in both locations.


As to refreshing the receiver, that happens every so often. I just refresh it online. Since it lives in your house and probably recording on it, refreshing should not be a common issue. It typically happens when the box sits unused.


As a last comment, I usually move the box to the trailer a day or two before a trip and get everything set up and working. I find I have better patience when I am not in a rush, typically by myself and can work on other preparation items while the box does its slow thing.


Good luck
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Old 07-02-2018, 12:44 PM   #11
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I've had Directtv in my home since the day it started. When we looked last year for a Direct tv solution for the trailer, there really isn't a good one. DT requires the full-size dish (like at home) to get HD signals. The small automatic dish solutions will only get you Standard definition channels.

DT also is about $90/month for the receiver and monthly charge.

We switched to Dish at home and bought the Playmaker Dish Sattelite dome.

Dish charges $7 / month for the Walley receiver for your trailer. Our service at home went from $205 / month to $119 / month for essentially the same programming (minus NFL Games which I no longer care about). You can even shut off the service and save the $7 if you want. Once camp is set up, you make one call to Dish and in 3 minutes they set you up with all the local channels.

I bought the travel case to protect the dome and the tripod to set it on in camp. Most of the time you just need to set the dome without the tripod on level ground and use an app on your cell phone to make sure the skies are relatively clear with little or no trees. I have gotten a perfectly great signal through trees before. I have about 30 feet of cable I pug into the SAT connector on the trailer so I can find a spot that is clear to the south-west.

Dish is by far the best solution right now for us and probably anyone travelling in a trailer.
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Old 07-02-2018, 02:36 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Presitla99 View Post
I would like to take my home receiver on the road with me. I see there are many options for the portable antenna. From the basic dish on a tripod to Star Wars-looking domes. I humbly solicit your advice. Thanks.
Ditto what the others have said about DirecTV and Dish. I have DirecTV and two receivers in my rig. I use and Winegard G3(2?) carry out. First I suggest you to download the DirecTV app. You can use the app to reinitialize the receivers when left alone for a few weeks rather than call it in. Very Annoying. I also use the SatellitePointer free app to find satellites and "see" obstructions to satellite reception. Very Helpful.

I had a roof mount "auto seek" dish on my 25' AS. Although it worked well when it had a clear view to the satellites, but then you have the trees don't we? So...move the rig or no TV. Also didn't like the idea of holes being drilled in the roof. Bad idea. Sigh...tough choices?
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Old 07-02-2018, 04:18 PM   #13
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Manual setup is very easy with standard definition. In my Airstream, I carry an older model "round", single LNB dish (they're still available). If you're good at dead reckoning, you don't need a compass (though I carry one for unfamiliar areas), and you don't need a level. I just place the tripod wherever I think is a good spot on the ground with a good line of sight. Since I don’t bother to level the tripod, the elevation indicator on the dish is meaningless. You do need a satellite signal meter, then I simply point to about where I think a satellite is, understanding that the elevation setting changes with latitude, and the azimuth changes with longitude. I loosen the bolts to allow free movement of the dish. When I find one (1-2 minutes), I turn slightly east. If I find another one, that is DirecTV, and the first one is Dish. If I don't find one to the east, the first one was DirecTV. This is all very easy with standard def, and one person can do it, and there’s no protracted setup time while the system navigates through the various downloads. The standard definition simply downloads the “guide” data in a minute or two, and you’re all set.
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Old 07-02-2018, 08:57 PM   #14
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Since the discussion seems to be crossing the road and back, dishpointer.com seems to work at least in theory. I bought the tailgater/wally combo but won't activate the pay as you go and test until the next trip. Maybe directtvpointer?com????
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Old 07-03-2018, 12:58 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by CruizinDux View Post
Since the discussion seems to be crossing the road and back, dishpointer.com seems to work at least in theory. I bought the tailgater/wally combo but won't activate the pay as you go and test until the next trip. Maybe directtvpointer?com????
B
I'll have to try DirecTVpointer app. First time I heard of it. Hmmm, I don't understand your comment about pay-as-you-go. Dish has such a program, when I tried to do that with DirecTV it cost me more a year to do that than to pay the additional $5-6/receiver/month. Has DirecTV changed their policy to something more reasonable?
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Old 07-03-2018, 10:32 PM   #16
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I'll have to try DirecTVpointer app. First time I heard of it. Hmmm, I don't understand your comment about pay-as-you-go. Dish has such a program, when I tried to do that with DirecTV it cost me more a year to do that than to pay the additional $5-6/receiver/month. Has DirecTV changed their policy to something more reasonable?
Zapper, i'm not ure if DTV POINTER exists...jus saying as dishpointer does. Wishful thinking maybe.

I'm sorry that i was not clear. I am talking about dish. I bought the setup at CW but haven't set up the system. I'll do that before the next big trip. We have cable at home so opted for the dish pay as you go option. I called dish outdoors who CW indicated was their vendor. They suggested the smart pack...not on the dish website but to Google it. Memory is under $50 foe a 30 day period, renew as needed. Mostly stuff i don't care about, but it has fox news and bloomberg plus the local channels. Call or the app to change the zip for area local channels.

I will subscribe be 30 day periods as long as i'm traveling...let it expire...the subscribe when i'm OTRA. This is also how i use my verizon jetpack hotspot...pay, uze, expire....wait...repeat as needed. Since i don't have sat it home, use is sporadic, this for me is the cheapest solution.
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Old 07-03-2018, 10:47 PM   #17
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I have two different satellite finder apps on my phone. SAToolz DirecTV has been on my phone for several years and is what I typically use. Very simple. It was a purchase app and I don't remember what I paid for it, although it was long enough ago to be irrelevant now. Still available from app store.

The other app is Winegard which has both an antenna pointer and satellite pointer. It was free. The Winegard app works for DirecTV, Bell, Dish and Shaw.

Both work well and are accurate. The first one is my go to simply because I have used it the longest and it does only DirecTV. The Winegard for free is probably the way to go if getting a new app.

The apps make checking out a potential site a breeze as well as selecting a place to put the dish. Helps lower my frustration level
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Old 07-08-2018, 11:11 AM   #18
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We have Direct TV, and bring out HR 24 receiver from the home. It works well with standard definition and King Quest Satellite antenna. I have it hooked up to 50 feet of coaxial from King to Sat connection on Side of RB 26 Flying cloud. The key is make sure you have clear view of SW sky at least in eastern united states. We receive Sat 101 and 119 with UC 1000 controller. We have also used full portable dish on tripod that you have to aim carefully and align with 101 satellite using the Direct TV satellite antenna set up menu. This takes a lot more time, but if you need HD, it is cheap way to have it . We typically use automatic King Quest set up and live with standard definition.
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