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Vol. 7 - No.9


No sooner did we published our newsletter last month when we got a reply from a reader affirming that he also experienced errors in the receiver software and noted another source for getting incorrect coordinates to aim your dish.  He observed that many campgrounds provide coordinates for both Dish Network and DirecTV in the lIterature they provide when checking in.  He noted that often these coordinates are inaccurate.

To further illustrate how the coordinates built into the satellite receiver are often wrong, we would like to relate a recent experience we had with exactly that problem.

A little over a year ago we upgraded the satellite receiver in our RV to HD.  We purchased a new, VIP-211 receiver from our local Dish installer.  This upgrade was in preparation for some family who would use the RV while staying with us.  Since we don't have a clear spot to set up the dish near the RV when it is parked on our property, we simply added a splitter to our home's dish and got the signal from there.  So, we never looked at the dish setup program for the receiver.

We recently began to make some instructional videos to post on the website.  One segment dealt with getting the dish aiming coordinates from the receiver, so we checked our VIP-211 for that information.  We were surprised at the different results we got, depending upon how we searched.

We first checked the website  We used our Zip Code 97526 and picked our primary Western Arc satellite - 119.  Dishpointer returned coordinates of AZ 159, EL 41 and SK 85.  These compared closely with the coordinates found on the Dish Network website and in the manual for the D1000.2 dish - AZ 157, EL 40, and SK 86.

When we went into the setup portion of the receiver we found a lot of variations on where to aim the dish.  We know that we need to aim for our primary satellite, 119, and it states this in the D1000.2 manual.  In the setup software there is a place to plug in the Zip Code, which we did.  We then selected satellite 119 from the selection of satellites.  Now here is where it starts to get tricky.  We are setting up a HD dish and they call it a Super dish in the software.  When we select the Super dish it won't return settings for satellite 119.  Instead, it directs you to choose either satellite 105 or satellite 121, neither of which are used for Dishnet HD.  Satellite 121 came the closest with AZ 159, EL 41, and SK 88.  Satellite 105 was way off with AZ 136, EL38 and SK 71

When changing the dish selection to a Dish 500 and selecting satellite 119 we got AZ 149, EL 40 and SK 81.  Picking a Dish 300 we got AZ 156, EL 41 and SK N/A since a Dish 300 is a single LNB dish with no skew.

So, it is easy to see that while they all point in the correct general direction, there is a wide difference in the coordinates.  The Dishpointer coordinates proved to be the most accurate.