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Choosing a Satellite Dish Size
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Satellite reception depends on several factors.  One of the most important factors is DISH SIZE.  Most of the satellites over North America can be received with the dish that is included in a satellite system purchase.  Occasionally, customers want access to a channel on a satellite that is either further away on the arc (signal is weak) or the footprint is limited (signal strength varies within the footprint).

The best way to choose a dish size is to look at the footprint for the satellite you will be aiming for.  On our free-to-air channel-listing page at http://americansatellitedistributors.com/main/loading-free-to-air-channels.html, there are links to the footprints for the satellite.  See below:

FRENCH

EURO NEWS

TELSTAR 5

KU DVB

Complete System #1, 2, 3, 4,4A, 5, 6 or 7

 By clicking on ‘Telstar 5’ in the third column, you will get a map of the satellite footprint.  The footprint shows dB values for the geography of the footprint.  The map below shows that Dallas receives a dB value of about 50.  But San Juan, Puerto Rico receives a value of 44.

 Importantly, once the dB value is discovered, the required dish size for the location and desired satellite must be determined. 

C-Band

Ku-Band DVB

EIRP

dB

Residential

Commercial

EIRP

dB

Residential

Commercial

42

1.2m

2m

50

55cm

75cm

41

1.5m

2m

48

75cm

90cm

40

1.5m

7.5ft

46

80cm

90cm

39

180cm

10 ft

44

90cm

1m

38

2.0m

10 ft

42

1m

1.2m

37

7.5 ft

12 ft

41

1.2m

1.5m

36

8.5 ft

12 ft

40

1.5m

1.8m

35

10 ft

16 ft

39

1.8m

2.0m

34

10-12 ft

16 ft

38

1.8m

2.4m

 As always, make sure that your dish will have a sure aim toward the satellite you will be aiming for.  Low elevation angles for your dish are tricky.  Houses, trees and other objects can obstruct the signal pathway to the satellite dish.  Dishes above 1 meter are subject to the zoning restrictions provided for by HOA and city ordinances.  Dishes that are 1 meter in diameter and smaller are excluded from those restrictions.  Your legal right to own and reveal a satellite dish that is 1 meter or smaller in diameter is provided for by the Telecommunications Act of 1996.  *Homeowners only.  Apartment and condominium residents and all renters should always consult with their landlord or management company.

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