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Test Report for SKYCOM SCM-9900 Digital Satellite Receiver

SKYCOM SCM-9900 Digital Satellite Receiver

Dish channels introduced the SCM-7270 from Skycom last month. It caught the attention of users due to easy use and operation. When we saw the SCM-9900, it was curious. It is the larger brother of SCM-7270.

No doubt, the receiver has an elegant design. The front panel of the SCM-9900 comes with five buttons for receiver operation. An easy to read four digit display shows either the current channel or the current mode. In case the remote control is not immediately at hand, the most critical functions of the receiver can be controlled by the receiver’s front panel buttons. The rear panel is a familiar sight, two scart connectors, three RCA Jacks, an optical digital audio output, an optical digital audio output, an RS-232 interface as well as a programmable 0/12 – volt output are there to be found. The remote control sits nicely in your hand with buttons that are large enough and easy to reach. In short, the appearance of this receiver left a positive impression on us.

After turning on the receiver for the first time, the user is unfortunately not greeted with an installation assistant. The SCM-9900 however have a very up-to-date channel list for multiple satellites with preprogrammed channels. The main menu is appealing and clearly laid out. The SCM-9900 comes with an international selection of Ten languages. Setting up the receiver to your personal tastes involves selecting a language for the menus, the subtitles and the audio tracks. The two scart connectors link the Skycom to a TV and VCR. For better results, the TV standard can be switched in Auto. In this case, the receiver will automatically switch between PAL and NTSC. The video output can be switched between CVBS and RGB. The same is true for the picture format (4:3 / 16:9).

DiSEqC 1.0 and 1.2 allow the use of this receiver with up to four LNB’s or antennas. 4,000 TV and radio channels are already preprogrammed. Standard local oscillator frequency (LOF) values are already available for C-Band and Ku-band. However, if a non-standard value is needed, it can easily be entered manually. Unfortunately, there is no S-VHS output.

The automatic channel scan function allows the search for all channels, all channels plus data services, only FTA channels, all NIT, all NIT plus data, NIT FTA, all transponders, all transponder plus data or just FTA transponders. We scanned the Hotbird first. It took three minutes for 534 TV and 253 radio channels. A manual scan is also possible. In addition to channel packages, SCPC and MCPC signals starting at 1.45 Ms/sec were recognized and processed easily during our tests. Individual transponders and satellites can be edited. This box also comes with a sensitive tuner. The more usefriendly DiSEqC 1.3 (USALS) protocol is also supported. So owners of multifeed antennas with more than four LNB’s are also out of Luck, since this box does not support DiSEqC 1.1. The current time can be either set manually or enter in the time difference. The receiver will then take care of setting the clock. More experienced users have the ability of PID’s manually.

After a successful channel scan, the edit menu serves to bring organization to the array of channel. Unwanted channels can be deleted, others can be moved or skipped over. Popular TV and radio channels can be grouped into favourites list. This allows you to find your favourite channels with the push of a button. The video of the current channel appears as an insert in the menus.

Switching between channels is quite fast. SCM-9900 is based on windows 95/98/2000 an is able to upload and download. A YUV output for connection to a flat screen TV or projection system is missing. The operation of this receiver is very easy. The channel list can be directly worked on during normal operation. Additionally there are a number of symbols displayed at the bottom of the channel list that can be directly accessed via one of the function buttons on the remote control. With the help of these function buttons, the channel lit can be limited to specific satellites or sorted alphabetically. Channels not suitable for children can just as easily be locked with a PIN code.

The SCM-9900 had no problems handling EPG data. It was all clearly and properly displayed. Timer settings can easily be set up directly from the EPG with the push of a button. If the TV being used does not have its own teletext decoder, then you can simply use the integrated in the SCM-9900. If you are going on vacations and don’t want to miss any of your favourite TV series, the included event-timer can be programmed to your needs is just the thing you need. New software or a modified channel list can be upload via the RS-232 serial interface. The LNB power overload protections function and S/PDIF support will really give you a magnificent touch, while using this receiver. SCM-9900 showed good results for free to air channels as well as scrambled and pay TV channels. This receiver is perfectly MPEG-2 and DVB compliant. It is best for Dolby digital sound track system, you may enjoy the higher quality sound.

The on-screen display (OSD) of this receiver is easy to read and logically designed. It is a special type of hard drive receiver. It is handy with well designed channels. SCM-9900 comes up with every thing that a grown up receiver should have.

Model : SCM-9900 Function : Digital Satellite Receiver Channel Memory : 4000 (TV and Radio) Satellites : Multiple Symbolrate : 1.45 Ms/sec SCPC/MCPC Compatible : yes DiSEqC : 1.0, 1.2 EPG : Yes Teletext : Yes S-VHS Output : No C/Ku-band compatible : Yes Modulator : Yes Programmable 0/12 V Output : Yes Color System :PAL/NTSC/SECAM7



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