Glossary S-Z


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S-Video Jack:
Some televisions have an input for a S-Video cable. This is better than audio/video jacks or R/F connectors. It is for the video, not the sound. All DirecTV and Dish Network receivers have s-video output.


Satellite:
A sophisticated electronic communications relay station orbiting 22,237 miles above the equator moving in a fixed orbit at the same speed and direction of the earth (about 7,000 mph east to west).


Satellite Dish:
A satellite dish is used to collect signals from a satellite in orbit and focus them to the front of the dish where a feed horn collects them and passes the signals on to the LNB to be amplified and sent to a satellite receiver. The larger the dish the more signal collected. The total amount of signal collected is a combination of the strength of the broadcasting satellite, the foot print of the satellite and the amount of signal the dish can actual collect and focus. In a digital system, the larger the dish does not translate into a better picture. A larger dish will reduce the effects of rain fade but not provide a better picture in normal operating conditions.


Satellite Home Viewer Act:
(SHVA) See Satellite Home Viewer Act.

SBCA:
Satellite Broadcasting Communication Association. The SBCA is a organization of satellite TV manufactures, program providers, distributors and dealers. The SBCA is the leading voice for the satellite industry in congress and all across the country. In 2001 the SBCA began the National Standards and Testing Program.


SBCA Certification:
See National Standards and Testing Program


Smart Card:
See Access Card.


Solar Outage:
Solar outages occur when an satellite dish is looking at a satellite, and the sun passes behind the satellite and within the field of view of the dish antenna. Solar outages can be exactly predicted as to the timing for each site. The outage occurs during the spring and fall as the sun moves up down the sky during the equinox. The outages only last a few minutes for a few days a year.


Splitter:
A passive device (one with no active electronic components) which distributes a television signal carried on a cable in two or more paths and sends it to a number of receivers simultaneously.


Sports Subscription:
A seasonal package of professional or collegiate games. The current popular packages are NBA-League Pass, NFL-Sunday Ticket, NHL-Center Ice and MLB-Extra Innings.


Spot Beam
A spot beam is a satellite transmission that is focused on a specific area within the footprint of the satellite. To increase the capacity of channels they can provide. Both DISH Network and DirecTV started using spot beams in 2002. By using spot beams both providers can use the same frequencies in several markets simultaneously. The use of spot beams has allowed satellite TV providers to meet must carry requirements set fore by the FCC. Spot beams would be the reason you could receive your local networks at home but not when you travel more then a few hundred miles from home.


System Test:
This function provides a standard test sequence to help evaluate any problems with a Satellite TV system.


SW-21, SW-44, SW-64:
Multi-sat switches used by DISH Network systems. The first numbers references the number of satellite input connections and the second number indicates how many receivers that switch can accommodate. Switches can be confusing to setup and configure properly. You local service technician can help you determine what you have and or need, If you do not have a local technician please use your national database to locate one in your area.


Transponder:
A satellite component that receives, modulates, amplifies, and retransmits a signal. Through MPEG compression more then one television or audio channel are transmitted over a signal transponder. When you look at the signal strength screen from a satellite receiver, you are given the ability to check the signal strength on different transponders. Each transponder is responsible for a several or even a dozen or more satellite channels. Since each transponder is a separate electronic component on the satellite, you will see a difference in signal strength from one transponder to another. Some transponders will show no signal strength. This is a result of spot beams and is normal operation.


Twin 500 LNB:
A combination LNBF and multi-sat switch component for DISH 500 systems. Can accommodate up to 2 DISH Network receivers. If you need to connect more then 2 receivers, you will can switch to a QUAD LNBF


UHF Remote:
Ultra High Frequency remote control that can operate the receiver from another room. The IR (Infra Red) remote needs to be pointed at the receiver. Some manufactures including DISH, RCA, Hughs and Sony offer UHF remotes. UHF remotes to not require line of site to operate. They can control a satellite system from another room or in the same room if you wish to locate the satellite receiver out of site.
Some receivers have this function built in and others utilize a external box to receive the UHF signals and then pass the signals through a small cable that plugs into the back of the receiver. For satellite receivers that do not use a UHF remote you may be able to get a upgrade kit from your manufacture which will give you UHF capabilities. If a manufacture UHF remote kit is not available, Universal Remote Extenders can be used.

Widescreen:
Term given to picture displays with a wider aspect ratio than NTSC 4:3. Digital HDTV is 16:9 widescreen. Most motion pictures also have a widescreen aspect ratio, some even wider than 16:9.

 

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