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Hotbird & Astra dual reception.

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Advice please before I have to demount my latest purchase and drive back to Leroy Merlin!

Previously we had  two 80 cm  dishes , one pointed to Astra for BBC etc the other to Hotbird at 13 . On moving house the possibilities for mounting were more limited and less sightly so I delayed the task . Then just before Christmas I spotted a Titan 3 kit which offered a twin LNB head which was programmed for both Hotbird and Astra and seemed to be the perfect solution - two satellites through the same dish . Most of Christmas eve was spent up a ladder in chilly conditions but sans success. The theory is that you adjust the dish on Hotbird LNB and once that signal is in place Astra is automatically located since the dual head is a fixed monobloc . Stage 1 went ok and I was able to locate Hotbird and find a reasonable strength signal . However on switching the remote gun to Astra there was a strength of less than 30% and pas de picture . After two hours of tweaking I couldnt improve on the 30% reading . I plan to have another attempt before giving up and wondered if anyone can suggest what may be happening or if there is something obvious I am missing .?

                                                                                           Finally I expected to have to switch signals between the new remote receiver (for Hotbird ) and the old Skybox ( for FTA bbc) - the perceived advantage was to avoid two dishes and cable sets . I hope I havent also made a second mistake in assuming that this system will carry the Sky FTA signal . It says ( on the box ) that it shows a very limited number of BBC Channels ( BBC World etc.). Ive assumed that thats a limitation of the decoder and that the dish direction is universal?. When I set up the TEST mode the Channel Display on the Astra setting  it included all the usual  BBC channels ( but perhaps it would anyway ? )                

                Anything that can limit my ladder time much appreciated ( another chilly one forecast for tomorrow !)


                                          Regards    Mike

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How can I break this to you gently at this Christmas time - it sounds to me as if you've bought a system for Hotbird 13east and Astra 19east - the French bricos are full of them. If you want the UK channels you need Astra 28east. You have BBC World etc - these are not on 28east so I'm pretty sure I'm right about this.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news - Tim

p.s. I should also add that Sky boxes are very bad at sharing dishes with other boxes - they are designed to work with a dish set permanentely at 28.2 and do not take kindly to looking at anything else.

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As above agree. Sky boxes are bad news when using mobile dishes, if you have a mobile dish you must park it on Astra 28 each night / when not in use. When BBC first went FTA (free to air) Proe and Cie offered a bracket to hold a third LNB in the right position for Sky. SATCURE have the details of what you need to set up. 

If there was a local planning limit of one dish per house I would buy a 90 cm dish and install 3 LNB. Otherwise I would have a separate dish and LNB for SKY.

Link below shows a photo os what you need to do to get French digital and Sky with the same dish



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Thanks to you both for the very helpful (if unwelcome !) news. Thought it sounded too easy!

Will ponder the solutions you have suggested and may reseek advice.

Another question you may be able to answer . The reason for the hotbird link is for the OH to be able to pick up NHK fta news . This was being transmitted under the JSTV brand (japanese Satellite TV ) earlier in the year at our old abode. I've been all through the station listings three times and cant find it (it used to be around 250 ). Rechecked both the hotbird and JSTVwebsites  and  jstv is listed under hotbird 6 at 13 degees . Is there a quick way to check which is the current number/prefix on the TV display list ?


                                                                  Many thanks     Mike

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I've just looked at


and can only see JSTV encrypted in Cryptoworks.

This can be a problem;   broadcasters have been known to cynically build up an audience with free to air stuff and then shaft their viewers by demanding a sub.

I don't know if that's what's happened here.

The channel list on your box is probably peculiar to you and you alone,  depends on the type of box,  when you do the scan,  how up to date the transponder library on your box is,  etc etc.   If you can find a frequency for JSTV you can then do a new scan (on just that freqency if you wish) and the box will memorise the new parameters.    But not on ch 250 probably!

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