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Using a Hopper 3 with a standard Winegard Travler

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I've been using Hopper 3 with a modified Winegard Travler for several months and all things considered it's working fine. Mostly. There have been a couple of issues, like the Crazy Ivan, but nothing that can't be worked around.

Anyway, DISH is finally releasing the DPH42 switch which promises to make life easier for RVers who want to use a Hopper 3.

Shoutout to Mark Bruss who told me that the DPH42 was finally available.

Some Hopper 3 possibilities . . .

Single Hopper 3

Dual Hopper 3s

 

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7 hours ago, Jim & Wilma said:

Zulu, we dry damp a lot.  Do you know how much power the DPH42 switch uses?

1.825A

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1 hour ago, Jim & Wilma said:

Is that at 12vdc or 120vac?

120VAC

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Thanks Zulu for checking on that for me.  I was afraid it was 120 and that load would be unsustainable for us when we're dry camping.  

At this years Tampa show, Winegard rep said they were working on a software mod to allow the Hopper 3, I assume with hybrid LNB.  So we'll wait and see if that materializes and in meantime we'll continue to tolerate the Crazy Ivan.

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1 hour ago, Jim & Wilma said:

So we'll wait and see if that materializes and in meantime we'll continue to tolerate the Crazy Ivan.

You too ???

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7 hours ago, Zulu said:

You too ???

The only issue we have is the time it takes to search.  Sometimes it'll look like it's fine tuning and then off it goes on a new scan.  All been very tolerable and currently not an issue at all in Alaska . . . we just don't get any TV, satelite or terrestrial. 

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My last communication with Winegard was that they had no intention of fixing the Hybrid LNBF issue.  I think the fix is more than just software and you have to balance the number of users versus the cost of an electrical redesign.

But then again, eventually Dish will standardize on the Hybrid LNBF.

Edited by Mark and Dale Bruss

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13 hours ago, Mark and Dale Bruss said:

My last communication with Winegard was that they had no intention of fixing the Hybrid LNBF issue.  I think the fix is more than just software and you have to balance the number of users versus the cost of an electrical redesign.

Yep. The SAT IN voltages for Hoppers 1 & 2 and 3 are different:

sat-in-hopper-1-2-3-differences.jpg

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Got back to the States and ordered the Dish DPH42 Hybrid Switch. A little challenge of finding space in the Bedroom TV Cabinet but I did.

Big difference, with the standard DPP LNBF installed on the Trav'ler, the satellite seek time has been cut in half.

The DPH42 switch is $80 but the DPH LNBF is $50.  The extra $30 is well worth it.

In the Maritimes, I got to spend a lot of time watching the Trav'ler do what I had called "crazy ivans".  I had thought the Trav'ler was repeatedly searching the same areas.  It wasn't.  When you get to the farther reaches of the Continent, the Trav'ler needs to look farther from the normal band in the sky.  What the Trav'ler does is a 360 sweep at an elevation looking for a satellite hit.  If no hit, the elevation is changed and not is a sequential method.  It is more like Up some, then Down more, then a Up. Eventually (hopefully) a satellite hit will happen and then the Trav'ler will peak and ID the satellite.  If 119, then the Trav'ler will peak Skew and then check satellite IDs.

In Prince Edward Island, this process could take almost an hour and sometimes the result was a Stowed dish.  Usually on the second try, I would get satellites.

What must be different with the DPH Hybrid LNBF compared to the DPP regular LNBF is signal strength, The DPP having more with the voltage delivered by the Trav'ler.

Bottom line if your want to use a Hopper 3 with a Trav'ler, get the DPH42 Hybrid Switch.

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28 minutes ago, Mark and Dale Bruss said:

Bottom line if your want to use a Hopper 3 with a Trav'ler, get the DPH42 Hybrid Switch.

x2

The DPH42 switch is a much better alternative than modifying your Winegard Traveler.

That said, here are some observations from a couple of months of using a DPH42 with a Hopper 3 . . .

You may have to do more than one Hopper 3 Diagnostic "Test Installation"s to acquire all three Travler sats (110, 119, and 129). Typically, I do a "Test Installation" after every move:

dph42-test-installation.jpg

On several occasions, I've even had to unplug/replug my Hopper 3 -- and my DPH42 switch -- in order to get all three sats.

This could be because of my particular setup, but just be prepared.

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