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North American Primestar Dish usage



Hello,

I have one of these primestar dishes and I use it as a regular
Ku dish.  Useful in picking up "The Houston AMSAT Net" and
"This Week in Amateur Radio" on SBS6 or EMWIN on G4 Ku.
You will need a TVRO satellite recever designed for use with
950-1450 MHz LNBs (Some early ones used other ranges or 70 MHz).
Depending on the receiver and setup you will need some other
odds and ends.  There is some other interesting stuff on Ku
like newsfeeds but not too many cable type channels.

For more info on the Houston AMSAT Net and the W0KIE network see:
http://www.ionet.net/~michaelr/index.html

This 3 foot dish has an offset feed. Frequency range is American
Ku band of 11.7 to 12.2 GHz.  From what I understand this LNB has
a NF of 1.0 db and since it is used on a digital system it has a
reasonably stable LO for low phase noise.  It is a dual lnb setup
with Horizontal and Vertical outputs.  It takes about 18 volts
(I think only the vertical is meant to have voltage on it, but it
does not hurt it to feed voltage to both).  Satellite receivers
meant for use with LNB units will output the proper voltage.

The feed and LNB are one unit.  I have not looked at it in terns of
ham frequency modification.  The LO is 10750 MHz and block converts
the band down to 950 to 1450 MHz.  There are two models, one that
has a round dish (that I have), and one with an oval dish.

You need to mount the dish on a 3 inch OD metal pipe.  The reason
they are somewhat available is when customers get rid of the
service the dealer may remove everything but generally Primestar
only wants the receiver returned.  Some primestar dealers have
a few of these dishes around.  No doubt a few will turn up in
fleamarkets.  I got mine for the $50 shipping charge but I would
not pay more than 50 or 60 dollars at a fleamarket.

73  Eric eac@shore.net  WB1HBU



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