Thank you for all your input about digital satelite and digital cable. I will probably go for the satelite option. But before I do, I was wondering what standard do the satelites use in this region of the world? Is it DVB-S. I am planning to set up a Linux based VDR system, and best driver support is for the Technotrend DVB-S PCI cards. Are those available in Taiwan, or shall I import one? Did anybody already have experiences with the Linux VDR here in Taiwan? As usual, any suggestions/comments are appreciated.
All digital television on satellites uses the same standard everywhere in the world. The standard is called “DVB-S”, which means “Digital Video Broadcasting, Satellite”. So you can use the same IRD (“integrated receiver and decoder”) everywhere in the world to receive digital television signals from satellites.
However, I don’t know anything about Linux VDR. I watch Ku-band satellite TV the traditional way, using an analog television, an IRD, a parabolic dish, a feedhorn, and an LNB.
Thanks for the reply Mark, I just was not 100% sure. As for a Linux VDR box, you just need a Linux PC and a Technotrend Satelite tuner card, and you can set up a really nice digital recorder with time shift and all the gimics. I will have check if they have any of those cards available in Taiwan.
Does the VDR box allow you to insert a “smart card” so that you can watch encrypted TV channels? Here in Taiwan, there are very few non-encrypted English channels on the satellites. In fact, the only FTA (“free to air”) English channels that you can get here are CNN, BBC, ABC Asia Pacific (from Australia), World Net, and Bloomberg. And all of these are on the C band, so you would need to have a dish at least 180 cm (6 feet) in diameter.
However, if you have the smart card for the “Dream TV” package on the Ku-band of Agila 2 at 146 degrees East (which is what I have), then you can get about 25 English channels, not counting the religious (Christian) channels. There’s ESPN, HBO, Cinemax, AXN, Discovery Channel, Fox News, and a whole bunch more. And since this package is on the Ku band, you only need a 60 cm (2 foot) dish. Also, since all 25 channels are on the same satellite, you never need to rotate the dish.
This is somewhat new information to me. I thought the satelite TV in Taiwan is free, at least free of monthly charges. I assume if you need a smart card then you will most likely have to pay for the channels. Do you have to pay for your DreamTV? If so, how much are the monthly fees?
Some guy told me earlier about DreamTV, UBCTV and DSTV, but did not mention anything about smart cards. And of course I am mainly interested in some english/german channels but if I have to pay for those, I might as well upgrade to digital cable, that would be easier. But there I might need a smart card as well.
As for the VDR, I will have to check if I can get a DVB-S PCI card that supports smart cards and that I can get driver for that work with VDR. VDR (Video Disk Recorder) is a software that runs under Linux. Linux drivers for Technotrend DVB-S PCI cards are available that will work with VDR.
You really need to have a smart card to see any channel that’s worth watching, and you’re right that smart cards aren’t free. But they’re definitely much cheaper than paying for cable TV in Taiwan.
Do you speak German? Deutche Welle is FTA on the C band of AsiaSat 2 at 100.5 degrees. But you might as well get the Dream TV package, because it includes Deutche Welle, and then you only need a 60 cm dish instead of a 180 cm dish.
Earlier, I said that the Dream package has about 25 English channels, not counting the religious channels. But actually, there are 48 channels total! There’s a total of about 30 channels in English if you include the religious channels. And there’s also Deutche Welle in German and “TV 5 Asie” in French and NHK in Japanese and Formosa TV (min2 shi4) in Chinese. Also, there’s about 10 channels in Tagalog and 4 pay-per-view channels.
The smart card for the Dream package only costs NT$2500 a year, which is much cheaper than cable TV. Cable TV costs NT$6840 a year (NT$570 a month), which is more than twice as much as the Dream package, and there’s only a few channels that are English. In fact, even the Discovery Channel on cable TV is usually dubbed in Chinese!
I’ve never heard of UBCTV or DSTV. How many English channels do they have?
Except in North America where Dish and DirecTV both use proprietary systems.
Here are the links for the other satelite providers. SatelliteTV guy posted those in an earlier thread.
It seems DreamTV sounds like a good offer for the english speaking population. I do have a roommate from Taiwan, and I bet he would like to see his local Taiwanese channels too. Is there some sort of compromising satelite TV provider who has both?
As far as the costs go, I will have to do some computation and consult with my roomate. Thanks for the info. Maybe I can get you a beer one of these days.
I thought so that the U.S. again has some non standard proprietary system, as they do have for cell phones etc.
I’m pretty sure that the UBC TV package is only on the Ku band of the Thaicom 3 satellite (78.5 degrees). (See this website for the frequency chart of Thaicom 3.
The UBC TV package is on a very narry Ku-band beam which is beamed towards Thailand. Well, the beam also covers Myanmar (Burma), Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, but Taiwan is definitely too far away to be able to pick up a signal, even with a very large dish. Look here to see the footprint:
The beam for the UBC TV package is the area which is orange on the map, titled “Ku band Spot Beam (Thailand)”.
On the other hand, as for the DSTV package, that’s on the Ku band of the PAS-7 satellite (68.5 degrees) beamed towards South Africa. (See this website, titled “Multichoice South Africa”.)
This website shows the footprints for the Ku band transponders for this satellite:
You can see that there are 8 different Ku band beams for this satellite! The first and fifth of these beams covers Taiwan. But unfortunately, according to the frequency chart for this satellite, the beam for the DSTV package is the beam called “South Africa”, which is the 4th and 8th maps at this website.
You can clearly see that these beams cover basically just South Africa and only go as far east as Madagascar, so DSTV is definitely not viewable in Taiwan.
Now as for the Dream TV package, it’s on the Ku band of the satellite called Agila 2 (at 146 degrees). Look here to see the frequency chart.
Now look here to see the footprint for the Ku-band beam for this satellite:
There’s only one Ku-band beam for this satellite, so there’s only one footprint. And you can see that Taiwan is definitely in this footprint. In fact, in Taiwan, the Ku-band signals are very strong because the EIRP (“effective isotropic radiated power”) is 54 decibal-watts in Taiwan!
This signal is so strong that according to the table at this website, if you have a high quality LNB (0.7 or less dB of noise), then your dish only needs to be 45 cm in diameter to receive a clear signal! And even if you have a low-quality LNB (1.1 to 1.3 dB of noise), then your dish still only needs to be 55 cm in diameter.
Wow, I am officially impressed. You seem to know a lot of this satelite stuff. I really have to do some more research and spend much more time with those pages you posted to fully comprehent them. I am just wondering why “Satelite TV” posted those webpages. Strange, if you cannot receive the signals here.
So the best bet seems to be this Dream TV satelite package. And since the signal is so strong, setting up a dish should not be a problem, just getting those smart cards would be. From what I heard you need a buddy in the Philippines.
Wow, I am officially impressed. You seem to know a lot of this satelite stuff. I really have to do some more research and spend much more time with those pages you posted to fully comprehent them.
I just got my satellite set up by by satellite tv yesterday. Good luck trying to do this without his set top box. Also good luck using a local tradesman to anchor the dish.
Great to get the Phillipines feed with almost no adverts. (I really can not stand the advert volume and use of loud static simulations, its disgusting they can get away with it) Some stuff was the same, some were different shows and I got hallmark back. Also TCM and a few new ones are good value.
Turned the ABC on loud this morning while making breakfast and had the australian voices floating around the house.
Wife is not sure about the R rated chanel but I accidentally watched a bit last night. Gets boring pretty quick, no story lines.
do you get Starworld? I am getting withdrawals from not watching any trash TV lately. e.g. copiuous amonts of Reality TV and Sitcoms.[/b]
I know the best way to set up a dish is to use some sort of meter that tells you where the signal is the strongest. But I have helped setting up dishes with just a TV before, although that was in the analog dark ages. So I will have to think about it some more if the NT$ 5000 is worse getting dirty and maybe loosing a few years of my lifespan.
So you also have the Dream TV programming, and you think it is worth the money. I know the commercials on regular cable are really bad. They at least doulbe the volume compared to the regular programming, I always find myself pressing the mute button to actually be able to talk to my girlfriend sitting next to me.
With rated R movies you mean adult TV or Splatter movies with lots of brain juice covering the floor?
However, if you have the smart card for the “Dream TV” package on the Ku-band of Agila 2 at 146 degrees East (which is what I have), then you can get about 25 English channels, not counting the religious (Christian) channels. There’s ESPN, HBO, Cinemax, AXN, Discovery Channel, Fox News, and a whole bunch more. And since this package is on the Ku band, you only need a 60 cm (2 foot) dish. Also, since all 25 channels are on the same satellite, you never need to rotate the dish.[/quote]
You don’t need a smart card for Dream TV. My software allows my decoder to wath this satellite without a pay card. oops
BTW Dream TV has 52 channels not 48. Only your crap nokia decoder gives you 48.
[quote]So you can use the same IRD (“integrated receiver and decoder”) everywhere in the world to receive digital television signals from satellites. [/quote] This is wrong.
You cannot use the same IRD to watch other sats unless you have the correct gear. You Nokia can only be used for Dream TV as the encryption system is Nagravision. Your Nokia only has this one sytem installed. Therefor you cannot use it for Irdeto 2, Viaccess, Conax, Mediguard Seca, Powervu, or other systems.
My decoder as 6 encryption systems pre-embedded and can take 3 pay TV cards, whereas yours can only take the one.
BTW we get all 52 Channels on Dream TV. So that means being able to watch the ODI Tri-nations cricket on Dcinema 2 Australia Pakistan today.
Also unlike the crap Nokia decoder we get digital audio out and can arrange the channels how we like them. Also my decoder can have 16 separate sattellite hooked into it at one time. Your Nokia can only have Dream. So it cant be used for other sats, even Free To Air programming.
So that means I have UBC 78.5E, DSTV 68E, Dream TV146 E, Asiasat 2 100.5 E & Asiasat 3 105.5 E, Telstar 10 76E, Panamsat 8 166 E, Intelsat 701 180 E ( Nasa TV ) Intelsat 804 at 174 E ( Pentagon Channel ) Intelsat 902 62 E ( Manchester United TV & Chelsea FC ) All these are one one satellite receiver.
[quote=“Mark Nagel”]I’m pretty sure that the UBC TV package is only on the Ku band of the Thaicom 3 satellite (78.5 degrees). (See this website for the frequency chart of Thaicom 3.
The UBC TV package is on a very narry Ku-band beam which is beamed towards Thailand. Well, the beam also covers Myanmar (Burma), Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, but Taiwan is definitely too far away to be able to pick up a signal, even with a very large dish.
You can clearly see that these beams cover basically just South Africa and only go as far east as Madagascar, so DSTV is definitely not viewable in Taiwan.[/quote]
You said this…
I’ve never heard of UBCTV or DSTV. How many English channels do they have?
Sorry Mark but you don’t know what you’re talking about. UBCTV and DSTV are both available in Taiwan. You can go to the Brass Monkey ( DSTV DREAM & Sky Japan), The Shannon ( UBCTV & DREAM ) and Tavern DSTV, UBC, Sky Japan, Telkom ) to see the systems I’ve put in there with these sats.
A 55cm dish for dream is only for good weather. It’ certainly won’t keep the signal in heavy rains or typhoons. My customers get a 1.2 or 1.8m dish and no rain fade, even with typhoons.
Footprint maps on lyngsat are not accurate. If you look on NSS6 for Dish TV India you would assume it’s not available outside of India. But it’s being picked up in Taiwan Thailand Malaysia.
Asiasat 2 and Asiasat 3 together only need one 1.2m dish. A 1.8m is not required, but it’s always better to have a dish bigger than the minimum requirement.
DSTV is even being picked up in Melbourne Australia with a 2.4m solid dish.
Dream TV Agila 2 is being picked up in Perth Australia with a 3m solid dish.
There are many types of PCI cards out there for satellites. Some can take pay cards for certain systems. Some cannot. There are several encryption systems.
Dream TV cards only work in the Nokia decoders. They cannot be transferred to other nokia decoders or DVB PCI cards as they are married to the decoder.
So Mark’s card can’t work in another Nokia decoder for Dream TV.
sorry for the late reply, I was a little busy, but I read your latest posts satelite TV, sounds really interesting. I will have to figure some things out first, before I purchase such a system. If everything goes alright I will contact you.