Satellite receiver power usage

waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
Just something to consider, is the quite wide range of voltages one can be presented with in an off grid solar system. In a 12 volt system, anywhere from 12 volts or less, to perhaps 16 volts during EQ during winter. That's a pretty major range, and why I leave my electronics to a Morningstar TS-300.
On another note, Satellite TV was mentioned. (Direct TV box) My Canadian Bell receiver sucks back 10 watts, turned on or not:grr. That's more than the average of my freezer converted to fridge. Had the bright idea (I thought) of using a timer to shut it off from midnight, to 5 PM the next day, during which time I never watch TV. Worked great for a short while, then started loosing programming. Had to get Bell to "give it a hit" to get my channels back, and they informed me their receivers do loose programming if not left connected 24/7. Has anyone else had similar problems with Satellite receivers?
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Comments

  • solarvicsolarvic Solar Expert Posts: 1,071 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    Thr lnbf on the satelite dish needs to be powered 24/7. The receiver sends either 14 or 18 VDC. One voltage gets you 1 polarity, other voltage gets you other polarity off the orbiting satelite. When you shut off the receiver it only shuts off the vidio audio part. usually just let my Starchoice receiver turned on 24/7. Solarvic
  • firerescue712firerescue712 Solar Expert Posts: 95 ✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    My DirecTv receiver uses the same wattage on or off. It does loose programming when left unplugged, but updates usually within an hour. I like the idea of using dc appliances, This alleviates the inverter, but usually adds a voltage regulator.
  • Logan5Logan5 Solar Expert Posts: 32
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    a few years back I used a kill-a-watt 110v device on my Satellite receiver, to find it uses about 24 watts regardless of it's on or in stand by state. when I look thru the vents on the box I can see what appears to be an AC to DC converter. Ideally I would find this output voltage to be 24volts, or less so as to step down near the device. regardless a Direct TV Satellite receiver must be turned off with the remote and not unplugged, otherwise takes several hours to repopulate the guide and loss of autotune selections., so will always draw some amps.
  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    Thanks guys re the dish question. So it's not just the Bell system that must be powered 24/7. Sucks, and the EPA or whatever, should force the manufactures to change that. This is 2012, soon to be 2013, and some dish receivers are real energy hogs. Mine is one of the better ones as far as energy consumption is concerned, but still it's a pig compared to what it could be.
    Apologies to the original poster, I didn't intend to hijack your thread.
    Wayne
  • Volvo FarmerVolvo Farmer Solar Expert Posts: 209 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    We used a Dish Network HDTV receiver for two years and unplugged it every night. It took about ten minutes to boot and load the guide every time we powered it up, but it suffered no ill effects. We upgraded to a Dish 722 DVR recently and I put it on a digital timer that shuts it off about 10PM and doesn't start it again until 10AM or so. Still no problems, other than a little longer wait for the thing to boot and load the guide. The old receiver used about 25W, the DVR was about 45 when I measured it.

    As for the OP, I am in Wayne's camp. I've seen voltages range from 22.8 to 32V on my batteries. How much efficiency are you really gaining running all electronics on DC, and what would the cost be if you blew a few of them up one day during an EQ, or low battery temp absorb? It's just so much easier to let the inverter do its job, live with the inefficiencies and know that anything with a 120V plug on it will work.
  • techntrektechntrek Solar Expert Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.
    ...Had to get Bell to "give it a hit" to get my channels back, and they informed me their receivers do loose programming if not left connected 24/7. Has anyone else had similar problems with Satellite receivers?

    I leave all of my non-DVR Directv receivers unplugged most of the time, and usually about every 6 weeks they will display an error code on-screen. Takes me 2 minutes to call Directv and enter that error code (722), which leads me through an automated process which resends the authorization sequence to the receiver.
    4.5 kw APC UPS powered by a Prius, 12 kw Generac, Honda EU3000is
  • techntrektechntrek Solar Expert Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.
    Logan5 wrote: »
    ... a Direct TV Satellite receiver must be turned off with the remote and not unplugged, otherwise takes several hours to repopulate the guide and loss of autotune selections., so will always draw some amps.

    My non-DVR Directv receivers only take about 60 seconds to come completely back (including reading the guide data), from unplugged. The DVR is another beast, taking at least 10 minutes and a long delay after that getting the guide completely back.
    4.5 kw APC UPS powered by a Prius, 12 kw Generac, Honda EU3000is
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    I'd like to be able to report on Telus's system power consumption as they were supposed to install yesterday, but they missed the address - by 450 kms. :p
    (Yep; they went to the old house which we haven't lived at in 3 years.)

    Shall we slice these receiver power posts off into their own thread? It's no trouble to do it.
  • Logan5Logan5 Solar Expert Posts: 32
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    yea, I just unplugged and restarted, 60sec. to viewable TV and the first hour of the guide shows up right away, the rest seems to fill in over a longer period of time. did not have an autotune set so IDK if it losses those setting or not? but it also maintained my custom channel list selection. seems I remember it was much longer on an older receiver I have since retired.
  • Logan5Logan5 Solar Expert Posts: 32
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    I wish I still owned that 110v Kill-A-Watt device, the watt measurements I quoted earlier, were also likely the older long since retired receiver.
  • Logan5Logan5 Solar Expert Posts: 32
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.
    Shall we slice these receiver power posts off into their own thread? It's no trouble to do it.

    sure, that may be helpful for those more interested in just the TV receiver issues. Thanks.
  • icarusicarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,436 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    My neighbor has a bell syst, ns he powers it down. He used to use a dish net system and also powereed down those as well. The and HD receivers seem to be a bit longer to boot, but he never has to call for a hit that I know of.

    Tony
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    i'll confirm the dish network took about 10min. every time we had a power bump back then it would reboot and if this was an ongoing occasional bump it made tv viewing a pain to do that day. our 2yr contract was up and we wanted to renew with another agreement and package deal, but they refused and wanted to charge very high rates for less programming. we dumped dish after their unwillingness to renew a contract with a good customer and soon found them trying to pull fast ones on us including making up that the service lasted longer than it did and trying to bill us for more months after they made us ship their equipment to them via ups as they refused to go get their stuff even though these same guys ride around putting it in. scheisters.

    we thought of comcast at the time and tried to get it, but after their blowing off many appointments and saying they couldn't find us we told them we changed our minds and told them forget it. funny as they showed up about a week or 2 later unannounced to give us an install after we already had our final and current selection installed, verizon fios. (fyi, we had verizon dsl while on dish)

    i found the fios dvr does also reboot, but it takes maybe a min at best and it has a full recovery of all info and programming. the drawback is an extra modem for the fiber optics that needs backed up. (note it does have a 7ah agm battery for that backup) i have not placed my killawatt meter on it to know the dvr's draw and i will do so today while i'm thinking of it. i do know one thing, the picture is far better than dish. my complaint for all of them is that they over charge for tv, but the other half got the net and phone too. i agree with the net in with it, but they give far more bandwidth than i'll probably ever need so if they had a smaller tier for the net i'd be on it. ftr it's supposed to be 15/5mb and we typically see 25/5mb. i was happy at 1mb.:roll:
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Satellite receiver power usage

    update with fios dvr pwr consumption info.

    model motorola qip7232 2
    standby (remote off)-20w 35va
    fully operational-22w 37va

    i should note that i should've checked if i was recording a show when i did this.:cry: for those that shut down for the night, this will interupt the recording during that off time. most of you using dish or direct tv or even comcast in addition to fios, i would imagine, already know this that the dvr actually does the recording real time, but i figure i should mention it.
  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    Thanks for shifting this topic to it's own thread. Appreciate that :)
    Further to my Bell problem, yes, it always takes a minute or two to reboot after power is interrupted, that's no big deal. My problem was that after starting to use the timer, all was great for a week or so, and I had the grin of the proverbial cat that got the canary. Then one day I noticed CNN was red (unavailable), I ignored it, then a few days later a whole bunch of channels had turned red, leaving only a very few useless channels I never watch but still have to pay for, still available. Waited a couple of days with the receiver on 24/7, nothing changed. That's when I had to call in for a "hit".
    Friend of mine has two receivers, was leaving one at his solar powered camp, but unplugged receiver when not there. After a week, when they go back, all channels are blocked, requiring a "hit". They tried a timer to turn it on for an hour once a day, but same thing. Now when they leave the camp, they bring the receiver home with them and leave it hooked up there, unused, till next time they go to the camp. Sucks.
    I'm going to try the timer again, but only have it shut down the receiver for 8 hours after midnight and see what happens. An extra 10 watts in daylight (PV) won't be a problem. It's the unnecessary night drain that bugs me.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    wayne,
    i think it would depend on when they hit it with updates and whatever else they do with them. if they do this during an off hour like 4am then you have a problem. dish, i believe, gave you an option of the time for such updates. i never bothered to leave it off for time periods to see if there was a problem in doing that, but i would imagine there wouldn't have been. maybe you should give them a call and talk it over with them so you know how you can save on unused tv time for that box.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    I had the Shaw receiver sitting around here (no longer in service: way too much money for very little program watching) so I tried it out.
    It's a Motorola DSR505 and it draws 16 Watts, off or on. No DVR in this so it probably doesn't suck down any more than that while watching.
  • PhilSPhilS Solar Expert Posts: 370 ✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    When Primestar (later bought by DirectTV) first came out, I was gonna get it but asked some questions first because of the "off-grid" situation. They said the receiver was "queried" during the middle of some nights and it was s'posed to 'phone home'. Without power all the time, after the third unsuccessful query, they'd shut it down and it would be a phone call to get it back authorized again.

    So I waited. When Dish first started, I asked them the same questions and they said no problem if it didn't have power all the time and no problem if it didn't have a phone line hooked to the receiver. We've been on Dish since (at least 15 years IIRC).

    All of our 'entertainment' is powered from a wall switch that feeds a couple of power strips (depending on what we want "on"). There's no power to any of it all night and usually most of the day unless it's a weekend or holiday.

    When powered up, it takes the Dish receiver about 5 minutes to acquire the 3 satellites. If it's been a week or so since the last program guide update, it'll do that too unless I don't want to wait the additional 5 or 8 minutes. It does not, however, forget any guide info or timers by being disconnected from power.

    Our VIP622 used about 25 watts, on or off. I assume the VIP722 we have now would be the same but I haven't measured it.

    Phil
  • Volvo FarmerVolvo Farmer Solar Expert Posts: 209 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    Dish will renegotiate a new 2 yr contract and loan you new equipment at no charge, especially now that the Hopper is out and they have a bunch of 722s coming through their refurb house. When I first contacted them they told me I had to purchase the new equipment but I called back three weeks later and got a rep that made it happen. You just have to keep trying till you get a CSR that knows their stuff. When we signed up, Dish was the only company that would let us run the thing without a phone line attached. Directv needed a phone line and wouldn't budge from their position. Once in two years, we lost a bunch of HD channels but a phone call got it set right in ten minutes. We never needed a rehit in all that time and unplugged it every night.

    I think Canadian providers might be quite different in this regard than USA providers.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    i believe it was a monthly charge (rent) for the dish receivers and you're right that they didn't care if my phone line was connected for they said i would be charged $5 a month extra if not. that charge would be for every receiver in the house.

    dish outright refused to renegotiate a new 1 or 2 year deal for me and i will hesitate ever going back to them seeing as how i was treated. don't get me wrong here as verizon was goofy too when it came to reliable dsl, but so far the fios is pretty darn good overall with few incidents going on just over 2 years now. believe me when i say the picture is far better on fios than dish.
  • techntrektechntrek Solar Expert Posts: 1,372 ✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.
    PhilS wrote: »
    When Primestart (later bought by DirectTV) first came out, I was gonna get it but asked some questions first because of the "off-grid" situation. They said the receiver was "queried" during the middle of some nights and it was s'posed to 'phone home'. Without power all the time, after the third unsuccessful query, they'd shut it down and it would be a phone call to get it back authorized again.

    Phoning home isn't an issue with Directv, they don't require a phone line attached to their boxes. I've been with them 8 years and never had one attached - now I don't even have a wired home line. The problem is they send authorization codes every so often via the sat, and eventually they expire if the box is off too long.
    4.5 kw APC UPS powered by a Prius, 12 kw Generac, Honda EU3000is
  • Volvo FarmerVolvo Farmer Solar Expert Posts: 209 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.
    niel wrote: »
    i believe it was a monthly charge (rent) for the dish receivers and you're right that they didn't care if my phone line was connected for they said i would be charged $5 a month extra if not. that charge would be for every receiver in the house.

    dish outright refused to renegotiate a new 1 or 2 year deal for me and i will hesitate ever going back to them seeing as how i was treated. don't get me wrong here as verizon was goofy too when it came to reliable dsl, but so far the fios is pretty darn good overall with few incidents going on just over 2 years now. believe me when i say the picture is far better on fios than dish.

    Boy, you got unlucky with the CSRs you dealt with. They will waive the $5/mo charge if you ask the right person. Maybe two years ago, the policies were different, but I got a free DVR with the new contract I signed in August. I don't blame you for holding a grudge though.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    The Telus satellite units have been installed and I've just measured their power consumption. Both are "Echostar".

    Non PVR model: rated at 50 Watts but draws 25 on or off.
    PVR model: rated at 80 Watts, draws 31 off, 37 while viewing or running the PVR (record or playback - the hard drive seems to be always spinning in this thing; you can hear it).

    For off-grid use that would add up to no small amount of power: 600 Watt hours for the non-PVR and at least 744 Watt hours for the PVR.
    As with other units, you have to keep it plugged in 'enough' to keep the programming up to date; if it is left disconnected for too long the company assumes it is out of service and will not update it without a service call.

    Still a few flaws to these things it seems. :roll:
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Satellite receiver power usage

    echostar eh. they used to have a place in the pittsburgh area in the city of mckeesport that i applied for work at many moons ago. they wanted me to do telemarketing and i refused to after my previous short lived job entailed telemarketing and that was due to selling cemetery plots to people in new york city around the time of 9-11. many of us thought it was in bad taste to do that, to say the least, and many of us soon quit. anyway getting back to echostar, i believe they may have done some manufacturing there in mckeesport of the sat boxes as the building was certainly big enough for it. it has been vacant now for a few years as they probably exported the electronics work and i am not sure of the relationship, but i think dish was associated or involved somehow. i really didn't pay that much attention to it all at the time.
  • solarvicsolarvic Solar Expert Posts: 1,071 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    Echostar was a big player that made Cband receivers for the older satelite big dishs. Also had another brand Houston Tracker. The owner of Echostar went off and started the Dish System. The dish system and direct tv enticed all the owners of the big cband satelite system to move over to thier little dish systems by lieing to them and using deceptive business practices. General Instruments come out with a receiver that would receive digital signals that allowed the owners of Big Satelite sishs to still make use of thier equipment. Notorola bought the cband system so they could get into the cable system and really didn,t want to suport the new big dish system called 4dtv, so let it die a slow death. People with the 4dtv receivers can still get some programing off a cable system that has a lot of channels on one satelite. 4dtv and Starchoice called had the same receiver first made bt General instrument that still used the big satelite. Starchoice went to the small stationary dish system and all receivers were built by Motorola. 4dtv receivers are no longer made and the diehard users are still buying them. If you still have a big dish you can still get a lot of programing free with an Mpeg receiver. A lot of people don,t know that as dish and direct tv told everyone that there is nothing there which is a lie. They receive first generation signals from the big satelite dish and descramble the programing and upload it to thier own satelite dish so they can charge you to make your direct tv or dish tv to work. The FTA receivers I previously mentioned can receive all the programing off the big satelite dish that hasn,t been encrypted yet. :Dsolarvic:D
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    well, that certainly filled in some blanks. thanks solarvic.
  • backroadbackroad Solar Expert Posts: 185 ✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.

    I'm wondering how this relates to my Wild BLUE internet satelite receiver and the amplifier for my cell phone booster/antenna......now where did I put those kill a watt thingees?
  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.
    Thanks for shifting this topic to it's own thread. Appreciate that :)
    Further to my Bell problem, yes, it always takes a minute or two to reboot after power is interrupted, that's no big deal. My problem was that after starting to use the timer, all was great for a week or so, and I had the grin of the proverbial cat that got the canary. Then one day I noticed CNN was red (unavailable), I ignored it, then a few days later a whole bunch of channels had turned red, leaving only a very few useless channels I never watch but still have to pay for, still available. Waited a couple of days with the receiver on 24/7, nothing changed. That's when I had to call in for a "hit".
    I'm going to try the timer again, but only have it shut down the receiver for 8 hours after midnight and see what happens. An extra 10 watts in daylight (PV) won't be a problem. It's the unnecessary night drain that bugs me.
    Well that was two months ago. Now after that two months of being shut down, all power removed 8 hours per night, some of the channels have again began to go red, unavailable. So there we go. Appears power must be totally uninterrupted 24/7 except for the occasional power outage, otherwise programming is lost. That really sucks as it uses more power than my fridge! Where is Energy Star when it comes to sat receivers?
  • Blackcherry04Blackcherry04 Solar Expert Posts: 2,490 ✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.
    Well that was two months ago. Now after that two months of being shut down, all power removed 8 hours per night, some of the channels have again began to go red, unavailable. So there we go. Appears power must be totally uninterrupted 24/7 except for the occasional power outage, otherwise programming is lost. That really sucks as it uses more power than my fridge! Where is Energy Star when it comes to sat receivers?
    What provider are you on ?? Do you know how to do a " Hard Re-set " on the box ?? Mine is holding down the up arrow key and using the on / off button. Some providers have a way with a on-line account where you can make it take a " New Hit " from the satellite. I keep mine off for days at a time and overnight with no problem. I have DTV.

    Something I have noticed lately is that for some reason the LNB use to be either on signal or completely off signal . Now for some reason it can get to a point where I only get half of the channels and I have to re-aim it. I don't have HD or multiple satellites, but it still gets off.

    They are huge power hogs.
  • inetdoginetdog Solar Expert Posts: 3,123 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: DC voltage TV's and Computer Monitors at Best Buy.
    be either on signal or completely off signal . Now for some reason it can get to a point where I only get half of the channels and I have to re-aim it. I don't have HD or multiple satellites, but it still gets off.

    If you have only a single feed horn on the antenna (only one satellite), then I would have to guess that either the dish itself is distorting from thermal changes or the mounting system is just not rigid and stable enough. Not much that the electronics could be doing to change the aim. :-)
    Do you end up having to change the elevation adjustment or only the azimuth? If the dish has an equatorial mount system rather than el/az and the adjustment of that portion is off, changing only the primary aiming adjustment may not be giving you the ideal aiming even when get the strongest signal. That would make the dish more sensitive to loss of signal by small changes in position.
    SMA SB 3000, old BP panels.
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