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October 2008
Video Recorder

Q.1 : How does a digital video recorder work with cable or satellite TV? (Zafar Hakim, Karachi)

Ans: DVRs are compatible with most any cable, satellite or antenna setup. Your exact setup instructions will vary according to the type of DVR you purchase. You'll need to review your owner's manual for more information, but here are some tips: Depending on your current home entertainment arrangement, you'll basically hook up your cable line to your DVR, plug your DVR into an electrical outlet, and leave your cable box as is. If you have services like TiVo or replay, you'll follow on-screen instructions for setting up your program guide and recording your cable channels.

Satellite TV

Q.2 : How did satellite television originate? (Imran, via e-mail)

Ans: In 1945, scientist Arthur C. Clarke visualized the placement of objects 22,300 miles in orbit above the earth's surface, where these objects would supposedly hover above the earth without moving. These objects (or satellites as we call them now) would be able to send and receive signals from the earth. This vision came true and later the orbital belt above the earth where the satellites could be placed was named the "Clarke Belt" in honour of Arthur Clarke's original vision. In 1957, the first man-made satellite, "The Sputnik" was developed. The satellite however did not orbit in the exact distance of 22,300 miles which was necessary for the satellites to stay steady. This orbit is known as the geosynchronous orbit.

Sharing FTA Receivers

Q.3 : How do you share an FTA Receiver with more than one TV set with each viewer watching a different channel? ( Zafar, Peshawar)

Ans: It is not possible because the dish people or whichever provider you have does not want that to happen they want you to have to buy more from them so they can make more profit. I have tried but if you use a splitter and have wire to another room you can just be watching TV in your room when people are not watching on the other. It is very confusing to say but it is easy to get once you think about it.

Satellite Dish

Q.6 : What is the best size satellite dish for free to air? (Nasir Hakim, via e-mail)

Ans: You must be talking about C band dishes. Lots free channels come across the channels and satellites. They determine the size of the dish. On a smaller dish we got a snowy picture.

Satellite Communication

Q.7 : What is the function of satellite communication? (Khalid Usman, Abbotabad)

Ans: Satellite communication is a process where a radio signal is transmitted to a satellite above your horizon. That satellite rebroadcasts that signal, on a different frequency, either to a ground station, or to another satellite to be relayed further. It allows communications without any local infrastructure, such as wires, towers, or other equipment. All that is needed is a receiver/transmitter which operates in the correct frequency bands, and which has sufficient power and sensitivity to communicate with a satellite, and the satellites.

Orbiting satellites

Q.8 : Have there been any Earth-orbiting satellites or manned shuttle flights that have orbited the Earth around the poles, rather than the equator? (Amjad Iqbal, Dubai)

Ans: Most people think of satellites as flying east-west, circling the globe above the equator. While many satellites do fly in such low equatorial orbits, there also are many polar-orbiting satellites. which travel a north-south path across the poles. Different satellites fly around Earth on different orbital paths. The choice of north-south or east-west route depends upon the job assigned to the satellite. Polar-orbiting satellites provide a more global view of Earth. Polar satellites look down on Earth's entire surface, passing above the North and South Poles several times a day. As the satellite loops around the globe, Earth seems to rotate under the orbit.

TV Broadcast

Q.9 : Why are satellites used for TV broadcast and what do they do? (Hassan, via e-mail)

Ans: This is a simplified answer to help you understand. Since the earth is round, you can't transmit a signal across the United States without hitting the planet itself. The satellites are in a geosynchronous orbit, 22,300 miles above the equator. In other words, if the space shuttle puts the satellite over Kansas, the satellite will always remain over Kansas, travelling with the planet. The TV signal is digitally compressed and sent to the satellites, where it is amplified by about 120 watts and then sent back toward the middle of the United States at over 12 GHz. This means you can pick up the signal from anywhere in the country as long as you have a clear view of the satellite.

6000 HDTV receiver

Q.10 : Can I add an older receiver or a 6000 HDTV receiver to a new DishPro LNB? (Khalid Mustafa, Islamabad)

Ans: Any receiver that doesn't have 301, 501, 508, 510 or 721 in the part number is called a legacy receiver. You can use a legacy receiver with the new DishPro LNB, but you will need a Legacy adapter to change the frequency. The little adapter goes behind the receiver and is connected with a piece of RG-6 cable. Another piece of RG-6 cable goes from the adapter to the DP LNB.

EPG System

Q.11 : What are the differences in the various satellite receivers? (Aqeel Sarwar, Lahore)

Ans: The receiver electronics process information and change channels. The interactive TV Guide and Menu system is like a computer operating system. The hardware and the Guide/Menu system work together to continually retrieve programming information from the satellite. With up to 500 channels, you will be using the TV guide and Menus all the time, so ease of use and speed are very important. The early model receivers required a download from the satellite every time you wanted information on a listed program. The new DP301 has a memory chip that stores about 4 hours of the program guide information at a time. The DP510 and DP721 are fantastic because 7 to 9 days of program information is stored on the hard disk with every download.


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