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Old 06-04-2016, 09:49 PM   #1
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DirecTV Reception in Alaska

Planning a trip to Alaska and putting together a list of things to take. One item in question is the DirecTV antenna and receiver. Anyone have experience with DirecTV reception through Canada and Alaska? Is it worthwhile packing the DirecTV equipment or will it be a waste of time (and valuable space)??
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Old 06-04-2016, 10:31 PM   #2
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I have not used direct tv in Alaska, but they sell it there. Only issue I could envision would be a low angle to get the satellite, so trees etc could be an issue. You may be able to input a zip code in Alaska and get satellite coordinates and see what issues it may bring up.. Or, call direct Tv Tech support and ask the question. Good Luck and have a great trip. !
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Old 06-05-2016, 04:15 AM   #3
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IIRC they require a much larger dish. We had trouble getting a consistent signal as we ventured across Canada because of the low angle.
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Old 06-05-2016, 06:54 AM   #4
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Good idea to check zipcodes for the settings. The first trip to Ak we noticed a few dishes next to buildings and wondered why they all seem to be drooping all the way to the ground. The angle is very very very low up there so any obstruction will prevent a signal. As a result location and position on high ground facing toward the satalite is necessary. We were renting the RV and it did not have sat tv so we did not actually test for a signal. I would also contact Direct and ask them about Ak.
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Old 06-05-2016, 08:13 AM   #5
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From what I understand, it's not only an issue with LOS (line of sight) but also on signal strength as well as ease of alignment because even a slight misalignment can cause very large signal differences that far north. The larger 1.2m dishes are meant to compensate, at least partially, for the signal loss by being so far north. I have read that the larger dishes give you about 6db more in signal strength than the standard Slimline dish. Like others have mentioned, you might get lucky and be able to use a standard slimline dish, but I would think that if you were successful in getting the dish aligned and receiving a signal, you also would be much more prone to rain fade or other interference, at least when trying to view HD channels, and your signal reliability might be problematic at best. If you decide to give it a try, you could also try viewing SD channels instead of HD since their signals (Ku) are less prone to interference and are generally viewable with lower signal strengths than DirecTV's HD (Ka) channels.
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Old 06-05-2016, 08:31 AM   #6
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Thanks for your responses! Did a little more searching and found posts on another forum that kind of answers my concerns. Seems the consensus is "Leave it at home". If anyone else is interested, check the link below.
RV.Net Open Roads Forum: DirecTV reception along the Alaska Highway
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Old 06-05-2016, 07:18 PM   #7
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Not to change the direction of your post, but why are you trying to watch television in Alaska? I spent two weeks in an RV in Alaska and we were on the go from the time we got up until we went to bed at night. With close to 20 hours of daylight and plenty to see, why spend your time in front of the TV? Alaska is twice the size of Texas and you never know what animal orview is around the corner
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Old 06-06-2016, 08:34 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by us71na View Post
Not to change the direction of your post, but why are you trying to watch television in Alaska? I spent two weeks in an RV in Alaska and we were on the go from the time we got up until we went to bed at night. With close to 20 hours of daylight and plenty to see, why spend your time in front of the TV? Alaska is twice the size of Texas and you never know what animal orview is around the corner
X2 Have spent a total of 5 weeks in Ak without TV and never missed it. Understand my wife says I have an obsession with TV and have multi dish mounts, tripods, and now a winegard mobile auto antennae system. I have 2 separate Dish antennae mounted on my houseboat [one front and one stern]. If this is your first visit to Ak, it may be difficult to understand exactly what you are going to witness. Be prepared to make numerous stops to look on in amazement, often in several directions during the same stop. I would not have wasted even 15 min trying to tune in a signal. You will sit and stare at what is all around you. Forget the sat tv equipment and just pack your binocs and camera.
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Old 06-10-2016, 07:27 AM   #9
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You make a good point. I probably won't have time for TV. I do like to keep up with news programs though. We plan on taking our time being there maybe 2-3 months.
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