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Post 1 made on Tuesday February 15, 2000 at 18:54
Peter Haworth
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I'm finally starting to look around at getting a satellite dish and would appreciate some help with a couple of questions.

First one concerns what I need to do to be able to watch different channels on two TV's, only one of which is connected to the dish. I believe there is a way to do this, but have no idea what equipment is involved and how much it costs.

Second question. I was under the impression that satellite providers were not allowed to broadcast local channels, except under some very specific exceptions. Some of the providers I'm talking to say that they can now provide local channels. Is that true? If so, are they likely to provide all local channels or do they pick and chose which ones they want to provide.

Final question relates to any Pronto users out there. Any advice as to which dish set up works best with the Pronto, considering things like discrete codes?

Thanks for any help anyone can provide.

OP | Post 2 made on Tuesday February 15, 2000 at 19:25
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I'll answer what I can...

If you only have a single LNBF dish and one receiver, it's possible to hook up more than one TV, but they will be required to watch the same satellite channel. You just need to run a splitter from the back of the satellite receiver to the TV's (or use different outputs for different TV's).

Depending on where you live, local channels are becoming available on both DirecTV and Dish. They're starting with the bigger cities. I think both companies' websites list the cities that currently have local channels available.

I have a Pronto with an RCA DirecTV system and have been very happy. The RCA's support discrete on/off. From what I've read here on Remote Central, the Sony x50 series do not. I don't know about the Dish receivers.

Hope this helps, feel free to ask more questions!
OP | Post 3 made on Wednesday February 16, 2000 at 08:55
Historic Forum Post
To take what Bryan said a little further, a single LNB dish will only work with one receiver, which means you can only watch one channel at a time. However, a two LNB dish, or Dual LNB as their called, allows a second receiver to be added to the same dish, requires only a second cable run in to the house and when connected to the second TV, it can now tune in any channel independent of the first TV and receiver. The added cost is usually about $5 a month more for the second receiver, and most dealers sell dual LNB satellite systems with two receivers for only a $100 more than a single system.
As Bryan noted, the web sites for DISH TV or Direct TV have a page listing what cities have local TV now, and details of upcoming cities for service. We have it here in Seattle, with ABC and CBS, FOX, NBC will be on soon, and for PBS, we have a Denver station, but I'm sure we'll eventually get our local PBS. The satellite companies want to have as many local channels as possible, in theory, but the local stations are the holdout, for a variety of reasons. In time, they will come around, too.
All of the various receivers available now work fine with the Pronto. True, some don't have discrete power on/off codes, but it's a moot point. They all are about 80% "on" anyway, even when powered off. The cost savings in electricity might be a few cents/month. I usually tell my customers to just leave it on. If that still creates a problem, the additional programming required to deal with it can be easily handled by the Pronto. The only other consideration, besides cost obviuosly, is the features you require and how they perform, which you can verify at any showroom. Usually, most people buy the top of the line receiver and a dual LNB setup, with all the whistles and bells, for their main TV, and a second "vanilla" receiver for the bedroom or second TV location, where easy, delayed recording from the satellite isn't a requirement. The difference in price between all the various configurations isn't great, either. Setup is not difficult, and, if you want, most dealers will do it for you for about $100.
In any case, you will find the picture, sound and benefits of the various services far superior to cable.
OP | Post 4 made on Wednesday February 16, 2000 at 15:51
Peter Haworth
Historic Forum Post
Thanks for the helpful replies. SOunds like I should check with the DirectTV, DISH, and others for exaclty which loacl channels they provide.

I'll probably have more questions when I get further into this!


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