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TV on the Road


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#1 whj

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 08:37 AM

I need help with TV options on the road. Picked up new 5er In February 2012. During the PDI
at the dealer less then 12 miles from my small ranch, they had both TV's working and a number of
chanels on both. Excellent reception and enought chanels so that better half could watch her show and I go to bedroom
and watch baseball. I was happy, thinking that this will do for TV! Got home and only two chanels, NBC and some chanel that I never
heard about about playing old black and white movies.

We set out to Excapees in Livingston, TX and got a great site and no TV, they warn you at the office about being at the outer limits
for TV reception. I have that standard TV antenna that comes with many RVs, no extra boster on it. Some of the fellow RV's near us
did get the NBC chanel, but not us, maybe they that boster that can be attached to the antenna that I have read about?

I have Direct TV at home and that is my only option there, or Dish TV, as I live to far out in a rural area. I find that our Direct TV monthly bill is to high,
more then $150, and I am willing to reduce the number of chanels that we receive to cut the bill. I have been told that for HD TV from Direct, you must have a
high cost dish? Also been told that you can get by for much less for HD from Dish.

I could use any help that you are willing to provide. Thank You

Edited by whj, 10 August 2012 - 09:02 AM.


#2 Clay L

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 09:26 AM

The Wingman antenna add-on from Winegard will increase the number of over the air TV stations you can receive in many places. Also make sure the booster amp switch is on. It is usually found on the Winegard wall plate. An LED lights up when the button is pushed. IF you have the usual bat wing antenna made by Winegard you do have the antenna booster amp.

Regarding satellite. Direct requires a dish that can pick up at least three satellites to get HD. The automatic rooftop dish is a Winegard SK3005 or one made by one of two other companies. The SK3005 cost me about $1700 installed. The automatic rooftop dish for Dish is a little cheaper.

The dome type automatic dish that are are on many RVs will pick up Dish HD but will have to switch between different satellites when you switch channels and that can take a little time.

There are some portable domes/dishes that are cheaper than the roof mounted automatic dishes that can receive Dish HD but have the same satellite switching issue.

Clay(WA5NMR), Lee(Wife), Katie & Kelli (cats)
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#3 nana25k

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 09:30 AM

We have Direct TV...no HD/DVR/Tivo etc, pretty plain Jane stuff. We carry a portable dish that we took from our house. Our equipment is over 7 years old but it works for less than $90 a month and still has more channels than we ever watch. When on the road we have a regular antenna, (but it is old and doesnt' work well)..for over night stops with shore power hook-up we just get what we get..and in west Texas between El Paso and Austin that ain't much if anything.

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#4 Mark & Dale Bruss

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 09:32 AM

For one if you have the standard Winegard Sensar antenna, then you should add the Wingman which boosts UHF signals which most OTA TV channels are today regardless of the channel number.

Since it appears that you are just going to be a part-timer, one option for you is the Dish Pay-As-You-Go plan where you only pay for the months you use. You do have to buy the receivers since Dish wouldn't have a subscription flow to offset the cost.

Since you mention watching different programming in the bedroom from the living room, you will need two receivers or a Dish VIP 622/722/722K or a Hopper 2000, Two VIP211Ks should be the lower cost option.

In any case for separate satellite programing reception you are going to either use a ground tripod with either a Dish Pro Plus 1000.2 or 1000.4 dish or a roof mounted Winegard Trav'ler automatic dish.

Since you are a DirecTV user, you could take a receiver or two with you. The cost of a ground tripod DirecTV dish isn't all that much, about equal to a similar Dish setup. The automatic roof Trav'ler version for DirecTV costs a little more than the Dish version.

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#5 Zulu

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 09:59 AM

I have been told that for HD TV from Direct, you must have a
high cost dish? Also been told that you can get by for much less for HD from Dish.

I have DirecTV HD at my stick house and DishTV HD in my RV. I have a Winegard Travler rooftop automatic and an HD portable dish when the trees get in the way of the rooftop dish.

If you want affordable HD, I'd suggest the Dish Tailgater. It's HD, it's portable and automatic, and using Dish's pay-as-you go program, you can turn it "on" and "off" when you want.

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#6 whj

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 10:10 AM

Thank you all so much! I knew that the wonderful people on this
forum would deliver. Your knowledge and experience is so helpful.
This is what I needed. Thank you and happly trails.

#7 Bill Adams

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 01:14 PM

The simple solution is to use an existing receiver from your house and that it into the RV when you travel. If you don't care about HD while in the RV you can get a very simple antenna setup that you can move where you need it when you get where you are going. Automatic, semi-automatic and manual systems are available depending upon how much work you want to do.
As mentioned above, if you have the Winegard Sensar antenna (Bat-wing) you need to add the Wingman attachment for the best reception and you must point it in the direction the signal is coming from. If you are too far from the signal nothing will help but that antenna will give you the best chance and the longest range. Be sure the power supply is turned on inside the coach. I usually looks like a regular wall plate with either a tiny button or slide switch which lights a little LED when on. Some coaches also have it built into the Video Control Center if you have one of those instead.

Bill Adams
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