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Hopper 3 Installation

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The problem is the cheapo meter relies on being connected to the Hopper 3 for power. With the receiver connected to the DPH Hybrid LNBF head, the head switches modes and the signal is not the same as what the cheapo meter expects. Even my First Strike FS1 meter did not respond well with the DPH.

 

I did get my ground tripod dish in the ballpark with the FS-1 by rough meter readings but the FS-1 can power the dish on its own and I had the Hopper 3 disconnected. That is when I bit the bullet and got a Super Buddy, the only meter qualified for the DPH head. I got it but have not had the time to play with it.

 

So far this summer I only had to use the tripod once. Park selection, site selection and the Trav'ler took care of the satellite setup.

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I normally have no problem finding 61.5 and 72 using a Dish 1000.2 mounted to surveyors tripod and with EA Hybrid LNB and Hopper3. i use audio to tune and never have to use a meter. I do use TV4RV.com mast with the tripod/dish and it works GREAT. If I have to set up the dish a distance from RV (have done it up to 100' to clear trees) I use a wireless headset to hear the tone.

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Thanks for 3 new responses, guys! I have nothing to report about sat finding since I found I have a bad cable and must rewire to the roof. Will report sat trials soon.

 

Jim: I think you mean "Not so!" or "Not so." since I think you mean that the Cheapo Meter doesn't work with DPH equipment. Am I right?

 

WeBeFulltimers: I will try the audio to tune. I have a baby cam, and I think I can hear thru it. Good tip! Thanks.

 

Mark: The new FS1 PRO is $350.00. Yikes! I still gonna try compasses and audio and video (I can see compass bar in baby cam pic.) when I can get up there to fix cables.

 

I sure appreciate you folks. MIkee

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Correction $300 from eBay

 

A good deal. Nice meter, isn't it?

 

I think it's the only meter that you can use with the VLA:

 

VLA.jpg

 

Seriously, it's a good time to pick up a used Super Buddy or Super Buddy 29 as it's now discontinued. The new meter is the very expensive modular XR-3.

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Zulu:

Another source for a satellite meter is Craigslist. I purchased a BirDog meter from a former satellite installer for $100. He showed me how to use it and emphasized to make sure the mast was absolutely vertical when sighting in the satellite.

 

The installer indicated there were many "former" installers in our area as the installation company was difficult to work for. My guy had moved on and just wanted some cash for his meter.

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Another source for a satellite meter is Craigslist.

 

Older Birdogs may not be a good idea for the new DISH Hybrid LNBFs used in Hopper 3 installs.

 

I asked Birdog tech support about using older BirDog meters and received this response:

 

Can all versions of the Birdog be configured to acquire sats using DISH's Hybrid LNBFs?

Essentially yes, but as more and more DishNetwork services are moving over to TurboCode (for HD) I would consider the Birdog Ultra.

 

Not exactly a glowing endorsement of their older meters. So, for the money, I'd opt for a SuperBuddy over a Birdog.

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Chatted with Winegard rep at Tampa RV show and asked about Dish hybrid plans. The are working on the software and it'll be backward compatible. Rep was surprised we are able to make it work today. User update will be through contoller port.

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If and when the DPH42 Hybrid Switch comes out from Dish, there will be a simplified way to use the Trav'ler.

 

I have two Trav'lers, one on the trailer and one on the motorhome. The older firmware level Trav'ler on the Trailer worked better with a Hybrid DPH LNBF than the newer firmware on the motorhome Trav'ler.

 

The Trav'ler doe find the satellites on the motorhome, eventually.

 

I look forward to the firmware upgrade or the DPH42 release.

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If and when the DPH42 Hybrid Switch comes out from Dish, there will be a simplified way to use the Trav'ler.

 

I look forward to the firmware upgrade or the DPH42 release.

 

I'm hoping the DPH42 switch comes first. IMHO, it's the better solution as the switch allows you to use the conventional DPP LNBFs (as opposed to the new "hybrid" LNBFs) + you'll be able to network two Hopper 3s on one dish:

 

single_rv_hopper3.jpg

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I too would prefer the DPH42 Switch solutions. Since Winegard never identified a problem exists with the DPH Hybrid LNBF head after numerous emails from me, I question whether Winegard is working on the problem or not.

 

Dish has a better economic driver for the DPH42 Switch but Soon at Dish can take a long time.

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When you say "disconnect" the Hopper 3, do you mean put a break in the RG-6 path, turn off the 120VAC power, or both? If the answer is break the RG-6, do you do that w an A-B selector or some other accessory?

 

Pebbledropper

2008 Country Coach Allure 470 37'

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Sorry. I read more of the Guide and found the answer to be an A-B switch.

 

Where can those be bought? I can't find them on Solid Signal's site.

 

Next: the Guide says to disconnect the Joeys from the Solo before re-connecting to the Trav'ler AND to re-connect the Joeysto the Solo one at a time. I really can't do that every time I stop and set up. The RG-6's and hub will be behind the covering board that you see when the OHC is opened. HOWEVER, I can put as many A-B switches on that board as I want.

 

So, am I correct that if I don't want to unscrew connections at the hub, I need to run RG-6 from the Solo hub to an A-B switch and back to the Hopper 3 and Joeys for each place I want a temporary disconnect?

 

Modification of above question: I'm not using wired Joeys but rather 2 wireless Joeys. So, my RG-6 from the bottom of the Solo will go to the Dish (or equivalent) wireless bridge. How, then, can I re-connect each wireless Joey one at a time? I can put an A-B switch breaking the connection between the Hopper 3 and bridge. Is that sufficient to isolate the Hopper 3 during it's re-connection.

 

While I'm at this: When Hoppers started being installed in our portable earthquake MH's, Dish Network and many installers said "don't" and even threatened warranty violations for people who got their equipment via a contract. Many RV'ers blazed a trail, anyway. However, I remember reading posts that said that damage to,Hoppers WAS occurring. Posted helps included being sure the Hopper was secured very well, putting some closed cell foam under the feet for shock absorbers, and MOST IMPORTANTLY, turning it off and then its 120VAC power. The latter, I believe, was to settle the hard drive and keep it from bouncing around during transit. I intend to do all of that with my new Hopper 3 (just to keep the urban legend alive if nothing else); but are there other safeguards I should do?

 

Pebbledropper

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The reason for the disconnect switch is to isolate the Trav'ler dish while it is seeking from the Hopper 3. There is no need to disconnect Joeys from the Solo after the initial installation. The disconnect is before the SOLO.

 

I have been using Dish DVRs since 2006. First a VIP622, then a VIP722K, then a Hopper, an now a Hopper 3. Over those years, I also have had non-laptop PCs running all the time. Not one disk failure yet. This is one of the worse urban legends around.

 

I did turn the DVRs off while traveling but it has nothing to do with protecting them. The biggest protection for a DVR in an RV is cooling. The cabinets we put DVRs in tend to be small and quite often in a slide where the roof insulation is smaller so the cabinets are hotter yet. Heat, not vibration, will kill a disk drive and that has been true since I started with computers in 1970.

 

So find a dual cooling fan setup on eBay for a Dish DVR that pulls air through the DVR. And then make sure there is a way for hot air to get out of the cabinet. In my current installation in a Bounder, I put a 6" fan in the base of the Bedroom TV Cabinet to get the hot air from the Hopper 3, two Joeys, router, and air-card amplifier. TV Compartment Fan.

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Zulu

 

Thank you so much for the instructions to upgrade the dish.

The dish installer had never heard of it. For a "few dollars more" he did the transformation and it worked perfectly.

 

I installed a 2 way switch in the line - I left the 2 one empty. When we put it up we make sure the switch is on the empty one.

 

Again, thanks for your help..

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Mark,

 

I'm curious why you are sucking the hot air down and out . It may depend on the cabinet; but not air rises.

 

My OHC had a plastic insert in the door. I replaced it with a nice looking black metal stamped grill with lots of holes; so, it's totally open to outside air. The factory a

Ready cut a hole in the back bottom of the cabinet that gets passive air up from the window valance below. I intend to put my 6" fan about 2/3's of the way up vertically and centered behind the components and blow air across them and out the grill. If the temps get more than I like, I can install another small fan in the bottom hole and suck forced air up and in.

 

Am I doing this backwards?

 

Pebledropper

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The top of the cabinet is the roof, there are cabinets on either side, and the front is the TV, that left down.

 

In my trailer, I replaced the plastic fake leaded glass panel with a mesh screen.

 

The reason for the 6" fan is to expel heat. I also have 3" fans on the end of the Hopper 3 and a 3" fan on the Sleek for individual cooling.

 

Each situation is different and whatever works, works.

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Dish is currently using the new DPH42 switches in PR, apparently as a real world pre-release test lab. Hopefully that means they'll be available nationally in the not too distant future. The DPH42 will permit multiple H3's to use a single existing non-hybrid eastern and western arc LNBF's. The DPH42 should also allow H3's to be installed using unmodified Trav'lers it seems.

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Judging by past evolution at Dish, the release of the DPH42 may well being withheld not for for the function of adding Hybrid functionality to a DPP LNBF assembly. That appears to be working in PR.

 

I believe the hold is because as soon as it is available, there will be constant squawking about not being able to connect two Hopper 3s and have interoperability between the two Hopper 3s.

 

It happened before when you could first order a second Hopper and people bitched because they where not integrated from the get-go,

 

So we sit here needing just the hardware function and waiting on the far more complex interoperability software.

 

That is what I think.

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I believe the hold is because as soon as it is available, there will be constant squawking about not being able to connect two Hopper 3s and have interoperability between the two Hopper 3s.

 

It happened before when you could first order a second Hopper and people bitched because they where not integrated from the get-go,

 

So we sit here needing just the hardware function and waiting on the far more complex interoperability software.

 

That is what I think.

 

You could well be right... I haven't found any info either way from PR detailing whether a two H3 setup there allows them to communicate as the earlier Hoppers do. I expect communication between H3's and earlier H's may be an even thornier software issue. Personally, I'll hold out for the DPH42 so I can continue to use my current 1K4 EA/WA capable setup with an H3. The multiple H3 issue is of much less importance to me, since we normally leave one of our two existing HWS's at our Adirondack cottage anyway, so we can record programs we would miss while underway for later viewing with the Dish Anywhere app. The additional tuners would be nice, but are not a must have for us so far.

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Just an FYI: I read all the posts, guides, and tips above before calling out my installer to do my Hopper 3 + wired Joey (front OHTV) + Dish wireless bridge + wireless Joey (bedroom & outside patio). When he began, I told him about the Dish glitch regarding the Hopper 3 and Trav'ler's crashing into each other when the RG6 cable was left connected between the two while the Trav'ler was scanning for satellites. I supplied an A-B switch which we connected properly. At the time, my Trav'ler was already up and aimed. He unplugged everything and attached the hybrid head.

 

Everything was moving so fast, I forgot to punch the B button when he plugged everything back together and powered the Hopper 3. So, I prepared for the blue screen of death but didn't execute correctly. Nothing bad happened; and the install went on without a hitch. I do believe the danger does exists (because you say it does). Somehow, I dodged the bullet, or Dish has fixed the problem in their latest Hopper 3 boxes, or . . . . I still intend to use the A-B in the recommended way; but I thought you ought to know my good luck.

 

Now, if I can just absorb all the instructions and complexities of coordinating the Hopper remote, my Sony Bravia and its remote, my Pioneer A/V remote, my front OH Sony Bravia and its remote, I might be able to learn to use all this stuff by football season!

 

Pebbledropper

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