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Thread: Waayy off Topic, Stacker/Destacker Q

  1. #1
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    Question Waayy off Topic, Stacker/Destacker Q

    Well I've got a second DSR6K coming, and want to put it upstairs. Unfortunately my sat. feed comes in downstairs. This is what I'm thinking of doing, let me know if I'm off my rocker.

    Run the dual-LNB feeds to a powered 2x4 multiswitch.

    Put a stacker on two of the outputs. Hook the stacker output to my existing in-wall cable TV wiring (RG6).

    Disconnect the two cables where they come together at the front out the house and connect them directly to one another, bypassing the splitter.

    Put the destacker on the cable upstairs and connect to new DSR.

    Total cable length from multiswitch thru the house wiring to the new TiVo will be <100 feet.

    Assuming that will all work, I'd like recommendations on a reasonably priced multiswitch (Spauns are too much $$) and stacker/destacker.

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    I've had good luck with
    http://www.stores.ebay.com/id=5278851
    for multiswitch. It might be cheaper to run more coax.
    Never ordered but
    http://www.9thtee.com/dssstuff.htm
    hast stackers/destackers

  3. #3
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    What do you mean, "stacker"? Are you talking about re-modulating one of the feeds to a different freq range and combining then splitting and demodulating at the distribution end upstairs?

    Maybe you should check with these guys:

    Worthington Distribution
    http://www.worthdist.com

    Some of the stuff is pricey, some is really good. They had the best deal on coax ground loop isolators at $7 (or something like that) when everybody else wanted $15 for the same item. So many of the people in this market charge too much. These guys are pretty good.

    Orbit
    http://www.orbitsat.com

    Radio Shack has the cheapest universal transformers.

    You might want to poke around this forum:

    http://www.diyaudio.com

    There's some good background info on coax sharing at:

    http://www.avcast.com

    Make sure your coax can handle the bandwidth with extra room. If you use a cable modem, don' t forget about that. Mine is at channel 66 (I think, they checked that level last week.) Don't know if that's standard, I assume it is.

    And I'll sneak this link in:

    Free Norton Systemworks 2003 Pro (U.S. only, sorry Canada)

    https://www-secure.symantec.com/specprog/freesysworks/

    Last edited by FredThompson; 10-17-2002 at 01:40 PM.
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  4. #4
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    You may not need the stacker...this sounds like my installation

    I have a pair of cables running throughout the house and I wanted dual setups in each location I use two switches:

    So it goes

    dish to multiswitch - (Two goto receiver in basement and two go into wall) then on the mid level take the two that came from the multiswitch and add another multi switch. Two go into the receiver on the middle level the other two go into the wall which runs upstairs.

    Most of the houses in my area are built for cable so they have a pair of rg 6 (actually I think it's rg 59 but it works run throughout the house. (Not a star pattern like Twisted Pair ethernet more like the old coax days of networking)

    Also smarthome.com has pretty cheap 4x2 switches (for like 39 bucks) (http://www.smarthome.com/7792.html)

  5. #5
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    A stacker modulates one of the sat LNB outputs so that you can piggyback both feeds onto a single RG-6 cable. A destacker (?) is required at the other end to split the signals apart. It works very much like a diplexer buyt at higher frequencies. They can also be very expensive.

    Spaun multiswitches run all price ranges. If your total cable run is less than 100 feet then you probably doon't need a powered multiswitch. I picked up a 2X8 passive Spaun multiswitch on one of the eBay stores for about $60. The powered version runs about $250.

    The link to 9thTee DSS Stuff provides a good illustration of what you'll need for your setup. Based on your description it sounds like a viable method for adding your 2nd DTivo. Personally, I would have run more coax. I wired up every room in my house for cable, satellite feeds, and phone lines.

    And now for the "This Old Satellite Setup" portion of our program.

    If you can run your sat feed from the basement up to the attic it's pretty simple to drop a coax line through the 2X4 header at the top of the wall in the attic. Look around and see if the builder provided some sort of access to a wiring run through the basement ceiling to the upper floors. Otherwise you might consider running the coax on the outside of the house and bringing it into the attic through the outside wall. Make sure you seal any openings you create to prevent moisture and insects from getting in.

    Get yourself an electronic stud finder (about $15 at Home Depot the last time I checked) to locate the wall studs in the room where you want to install the sat feed. Pick out a spot on the wall where you plan on setting up the receiver and find the closest stud with the stud finder. Try to avoid using an outside wall because the space between the drywall and the outside sheathing is full of insulation and would be a royal pain to attempt a cable drop. Besides, the top of the wall would probably be under the eaves of the sloped roof and you'd have to be a dwarf to get to it.

    Measure along the wall to the spot where the new outlet box will be located. Use an inside wall that intersects with the wall you are installing the box in. Measure up from the floor the same height as the other outlets in the room for aesthetic reasons. Place an outlet box on the wall and trace the outline of the box onto the drywall. You will need to decide whether or not you want to install a single or dual-gang box in the wall. Make sure the box is level when you do it. I would recommend a dual-gang box if you think you might also want to install another coax line for cable TV or possibly a phone line later on. Carefully cut an opening in the wall using a drywall saw. BE CAREFULL NOT TO CUT INTO ANY ELECTRICAL WIRES. Poke the saw through first and wiggle it up and down gently to feel if any wires are present behind the wall. Finish cutting the box outline and remove the drywall rectangle.

    Go into the attic and find the top of the reference wall that you measured from. Locate the spot along the wall header where the stud is located. You will see the nails driven through the top plate into the stud as a reference point. Make sure you are on the same side of the wall stud as the hole you just cut in the drywall. Drill a hole in the top of the 2X4 header (it may be a double thickness plate so use a long bit) at least 3/8" in diameter. Avoid drilling too close to any nail heads or you'll screw up the drill bit. If you're going to run more than one cable into a room you may want to make the hole slightly larger.

    Run your RG-6 coax from the basement up into the attic by whatever method you choose. If you plan on installing sat feeds to multiple rooms on the 2nd floor then you may want to consider placing the multi-switch in the attic. If your basement is unfinished and you want to also run sat feeds to the first floor then you can simply drill up through the floor and run the wires from underneath using the same method I'm outlining here. If your basement is finished with drywall ceilings then it gets a lot trickier but I'll leave that for another session.

    Once you've decided where you want your multi-switch located, run suitable lengths of coax from the multi-switch so that it can be routed neatly with no kinks through the attic, through the hole in the wall header you drilled, and down through the opening in the wall. Allow yourself a couple of extra feet to play with and trim the excess later. Run the coax through the hole in the header and down through the wall. You should be able to reach into the hole in the drywall and retrieve the end of the cable quite easily.
    Please don't PM me or any other members looking for personal assistance. You'll do better by posting (after you've exhausted the search feature, of course) and taking advantage of the collective expertise of the membership instead of a single individual that may or may not be able to help you. Thank you and enjoy your stay at DDB!

  6. #6
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    "This Old Satellite Setup, Part 2"

    You can get outlet boxes at any Home Depot or hardware store that have tabs on them that swing out when the screws are tightened. Pry open one or more of the cable ports on the outlet box and feed the coax through the opening (some have small tabs that need to be broken off to open them up). Repeat for each cable that will be accessed via this outlet. Insert the box so the top and bottom flanges are flush against the drywall and tighten the screws until the tabs are snug against the inside of the wallboard. Don't overtighten them or you'll crush the drywall and then you'll have a real patch job to deal with.

    Get an outlet cover with F-81 coax barrel connectors or use a wallplate that accepts keystone connectors (9th Tee sells these; check out their networking stuff and you'll find F-insert coax keystone jacks; keystone jack coverplates are generally limited to a single width box so make sure you get the right sized box). Cut the coax, leaving a short service loop to work with and install F-56 coax connectors on the end(s). Connect the coax to the wallplate and secure the wallplate. Complete all your connections to the satellite and multi-switch and you should be good to go.
    Please don't PM me or any other members looking for personal assistance. You'll do better by posting (after you've exhausted the search feature, of course) and taking advantage of the collective expertise of the membership instead of a single individual that may or may not be able to help you. Thank you and enjoy your stay at DDB!

  7. #7
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    Wow, I fee I should pay you for that Cap'n! Actually, I'm not planning to do any added cable runs, it's just not worth it to me. (Don't plan to be in this house too many more years.)

    I don't have a pair of cables in the wall, that would make things easier, hence the stacker/destacker route.

    I'd be bypassing the incoming cable modem line, that'd just stay straight wired to my room.

    PS Fred, I get about 20 spam messages a day about SW 2003, never thought I'd get hit with it here.

  8. #8
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    PS Fred, I get about 20 spam messages a day about SW 2003, never thought I'd get hit with it here.
    You may get spam from resellers who want to SELL you a copy of the STANDARD version.

    Look at the URL, it's Symantec giving out free copies of the PRO version, no strings attached. Big difference.

    This just started and Symantec rarely sends advertising email.
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  9. #9
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    Originally posted by FredThompson
    There's some good background info on coax sharing at:

    http://www.avcast.com
    Heh Fred, you ever use one of these? They seem pretty inexpensive.


    Also, anyone know why these Spaun boxes are so cheap?

  10. #10
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    No, I'd never heard of AVCast until a few days ago. I think it was in one of the threads here but I also hang out on doom9, everwicked, and a few other A/V places so can't tell you for sure.

    The IR aspect looks very interesting. I've collected lots of stuff on boosting IR and universal controllers and the like. Starting to make me wonder what could be done.

    If you want those things, let me know. They're all mirrored here but I can probably cobble together another link list. The best PC IR stuff seems to be girder. I've been toying with the idea of putting that and an IR transmitter on the BookPC that is by my DTivo so it could control everything in the A/V cabinet. Would be cool if it could work with the TiVo doing overlay (a la the caller id and im apps.) Everything could be hidden except a little IR receiver.
    Collecting 9/11, Afghan/Iraq, Mail Call, Trains, Cooking, Woodworking, Fighting Illini - Let's chat
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  11. #11
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    BL,

    The passive spaun multi-switches are all fairly inexpensice. It's when you get into their active models that they go through the roof. I bought a 2X8 passive Spaun and it wa only about $60.00. The active models seem to be a bit larger and are probably much more complex than the passive designs. I think most powered models just use some sort of in-line booster that compensates for the loss in the switch. The Spauns must be using some sort of electronic switch matrix instead of just splitters and A/B switches. I'd love to crack the case on one of these puppies and take a gander inside to see what makes them tick. I was amazed to see what makes up a passive multi-switch when I opened one of them up. It literally was a bunch of splitters and powered A/B switches crammed in a box with short coax cables connecting them all together.
    Please don't PM me or any other members looking for personal assistance. You'll do better by posting (after you've exhausted the search feature, of course) and taking advantage of the collective expertise of the membership instead of a single individual that may or may not be able to help you. Thank you and enjoy your stay at DDB!

  12. #12
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    I need to do the stacker trick for my downstairs DTivo. I only have one cable in the wall and because of where the outlet is, the only way to get another one down would be to tear up a bunch of sheetrock.

    My main issue is that I allready have a spaun 5x8 multiswitch and a 3 LNB oval dish. The 9th tee site says only works with one dual LNB, so I'm guessing that means it can't take 2 inputs from a multiswitch. If that's the case, the only way I could do it would be to stack the dual LNB on the 101 sat before it gets to the multi-switch, split the output into 2 and then de-stack one to the multiswitch and the other to the DTivo downstairs.

    It would almost be worth it just in cost savings to put up another dish on the 101 sat so I would only have to de-stack once and not have to split the stacked signal into 2.

    Anyone have any more insight on this or how I could possibly do it cheaper, let me know.
    Information wants to be free....

  13. #13
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    Just a quick update for those that give a hoot. I got my Spaun passive 2X4 switch today. Hooked it to my sat, then took one output and connected it to my existing in-wall cable wiring (RG6). Went to the demarc and tied the cable from the living room to the cable to my upstairs bedroom, bypassing the filters and splitter. Ran upstairs and connected a Sony SAT-B3 using RG-59 (all I had) and got signal strength nearly identical to downstairs. Woohoo!! No stackers yet, too much $$, but at least now I can have one tuner's worth of DTiVo upstairs.

  14. #14
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    Question

    Would the cheaper multiswitches ($39) at http://www.stores.ebay.com/id=5278851 do well for a short run of about 50 ft? Whats the difference if any between the different manufacturers?

  15. #15
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    Originally posted by genepool
    Would the cheaper multiswitches ($39) at http://www.stores.ebay.com/id=5278851 do well for a short run of about 50 ft? Whats the difference if any between the different manufacturers?
    I got my Spaun from that dealer. I was worried a passive switch wouldn't work for me, but it's fine. There are a lot of really cheap multiswitches out there, and I'd be leery of some of them. Spaun has a great rep., so I felt confident buying it.

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