Help Please - Poor reception on random channels

Discussion in 'DirecTV TiVo Powered PVRs & Receivers' started by suzyq, Aug 30, 2007.

  1. suzyq

    suzyq Gettin' my mojo back

    Oct 31, 2003
    Ann Arbor, MI


    I need some help. All of a sudden we are having issues with some of the higher numbered channels. There are a few stations that are completely unwatchable because of the signal breakup. Our local channels, and really it seems anything under channel 100 is ok, anything above channel 100 is subject to have problems. 290 and 291 routinely have problems, and up until a couple of weeks ago, those were fine.

    We have had DTV for 4 years now and haven't had any signal problems except during a really bad storm, where we'll lose signals on both tuners, but will regain reception very quickly after the storm passes. We have a Hughes DirecTivo receiver, a dual line dish and a multiswitch with four lines - 2 to the Tivo, one each to two additional receivers. One of the additional receivers is not active any longer and one rarely gets used, but both cables are still hooked up to the multiswitch. The multiswitch is grounded to the ground bar in my electric box.

    Last night I checked signal strengths on the transponders, but I have no idea what I'm looking for. It defaulted to transponder 23 and 23 only had high 70's low 80's readings. One transponder had no signal (I don't remember which one - maybe 29?), and the readings for the others were all over. What should I be looking for when I check signal strength on the transponders?

    What else can I be doing to determine if my problem is related to the position of the dish, trees, the multiswitch, my unit or something else? Thanks!
  2. ADent

    ADent Active Member

    Jan 7, 2000
    Denver, CO
    The local channels (under 100) tend to be a stronger signal.

    Certain transponders are used for locals and you will not get any signal on other cities locals (ie if you are in Chicago, you will get no signal for the transponders used for Indianapolis locals).

    The main transponders should be 80s or above.

    Sounds like your dish moved or you have a cable going bad.
  3. suzyq

    suzyq Gettin' my mojo back

    Oct 31, 2003
    Ann Arbor, MI
    Ok, so what troubleshooting steps do I need to take? I've read that I should get a F/F adapter and take the multiswitch out of the picture. What can I do to tell me if my dish moved? What can I do to determine if it's a bad cable? I just don't know enough about this and it's driving me crazy to have channels that are so pixellated that I can't watch them. :(
  4. DevilDogs

    DevilDogs Steeler Fan

    Dec 29, 2002
    Des Moines,...
  5. dtvtivouser_9292

    dtvtivouser_9292 cfc62

    May 15, 2004


    Also, you can step through all of the transponders. Just get over to the transponder number and go up or down.

    I agree, sounds like the dish may have moved just a bit. The locals will generally have the highest signal strength.
  6. suzyq

    suzyq Gettin' my mojo back

    Oct 31, 2003
    Ann Arbor, MI
    I do have a HDVR2 and I suspect it is Tuner 2, but will need to do a little more testing. This morning - a beautiful clear morning - we were getting little blips of the Searching for Signal on Sat2 message. And, Sat2 is always the first one to go in a rain storm...does that make sense?

    Here's something weird though - when I got home last night I put the main TV (HDVR2) on 290 and of course, it was pixellated. So, I went downstairs to see what 290 looked like on a different unit in the house (Samsung non Tivo unit). But, when I typed in 290, it went to 290, the info bar said 290 but had no program info, and what was playing was CNBC. :confused: Other channels corrsponded just fine, but 290 which should have been Disney, was CNBC.

    I hope to do a little more investigating this weekend. I bought the F/F connectors so that I can bypass the multiswitch to see if that is the problem. I'll make sure to check out all of the transponders to see which ones are reading low and if it's tuner 1 or tuner 2. I'd really like to get the HDVR2 on a pixellating channel and get the Samsung on the same channel to see if it's doing it too. If it is, I'd be right to assume that my dish has moved or my trees have grown, right?

    Thanks for all of your help everyone!
  7. milo99

    milo99 Well-Known Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    count me in as someone who has this problem w/ the HDVR2. it really is like a light switch- as soon as i unplug the s-video, tuner 2 works. had it on the test signal strength screen to test it out...

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