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Local stations or national networks only? An RV dealer or a store like Camping World is a better source for help in getting started with RV satellite TV service, but they tend to sell canned packages that may or may not be exactly what you want.

Network shows may also appear at different times.

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In most cases, you will need to get an antenna compatible with your chosen service, either Dish or Direct TV. You can also buy cheaply online, e. There is no way to receive a Ka band signal using a dome type satellite dish, so your choice of satellite antenna will be limited to an open-face dish more on this later.

This requirement affects your choice of equipment as well as your choice of campsite. Programming packages are offered at several different prices and you can select what you like and the amount your budget will handle.

If you travel widely, you may want a more sophisticated RV satellite dish that can automatically find the satellites needed in that area. Generally you have to buy the RV satellite dish or dome satellite antenna yourself, but basic open face dishes are often free.

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Ask about this before you buy. You must also purchase a satellite antenna dish or dome to capture the signal, and buy or lease the receiver that processes it for your TV. Chances are your RV TV is smaller than what you enjoy at home. Article Continues on the Next Page.

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The receiver connects to your TV via cables and you may have to route new cables for the hook-up. Dome type RV satellite TV antennas are more susceptible to rain and dew than are the open face dish types because carbon dating stone tablet background water droplets accumulate on the dome itself.

However, you have to buy your own equipment up front no lease. You probably know somebody who has an unused open dish left on their house or yard and that you can have just for the effort of removing it. For those of you who love to camp under trees or nestled in a mountain valley, you may find that the satellite is not visible from your location and, therefore, no RV satellite TV is available.

Click to Enlarge As mentioned previously, local TV channels for a metropolitan TV market area are broadcast only to that area. This can be a good cost-saver if you only need RV satellite TV during the summer months. And as you move further north, the satellite dish as to be pointed every lower in elevation upward angleplacing more things in the path of the signal.

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If you shine it at an angle to the wall, the lighted area distorts from a circle to an oval. All forms of RV satellite TV need a clear view of the southern sky the satellites are all located over the Equator, pretty much due south of Texas.

Automatic or manual set-up? In some areas you can pick up all local and major national channels with a single LNB dish but in others two or more may be needed for full service.

You will need to determine answers to these questions: The receiver for the satellite signals is extra and may be leased from the satellite provider or purchased outright.

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One service may excel at sports, or another may carry a favorite show, so look over the channel offerings closely. Another factor is that Dish currently is the only one with a Pay-As-You-Go plan that allows you to turn your service on for just a month at a time.

Dish has traditionally been a bit more friendly to RVers, so some choose Dish for that reason alone. The local channels for most regions are broadcast only to that region, and specialty channels such as HDTV programming or HBO may be handled by different satellites than the mainstream channels.

Getting set up for RV satellite service can be frustrating—the local satellite dealers rarely know much about mobile satellite service for RVs and many will not work on them at all. It also gets dimmer near the edges, until it is finally dark.

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Figuring out what will suit your TV-watching needs can be complex. In some northern areas it may be much larger. On the other hand, if you stay mostly in one local area and want only local network channels and a few popular national ones, you may be able to meet your needs with fairly basic — and inexpensive — equipment.

Will you stay in one area or travel widely? Buy or lease equipment? You have to be able to find the right satellite s for your current location and programming package, and you may have to receive signals from multiple satellites to get everything you want.

Portable antenna or fixed mount? Automatic equipment is available to handle most of these chores, but at a price, of course.

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RV Satellite Dish Options: Be careful when buying one of these in a retail store — the fee you pay may not give you actually ownership. If you stay close enough to home you can get all the same channels, but if you move out from under your spot beam, you no longer can see the signal for your area.

It also contains the DVR, if you want one. Equipment may also be present in a used RV, but you still have to contract with a satellite TV service to utilize it.

Think of a spot beam as a flashlight in a dark room.

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The RV satellite TV services charge a substantial premium to receive their special HD channels, so cost is a factor in this decision. So is the type of antenna required to receive HD more on this later. As the TV gets larger, the lines that paint the picture on the screen get further apart and picture quality worsens.