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Old 07-08-2015, 01:06 PM   #1
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DirecTV and Local Channels

Will be departing from W Michigan to do the Great Loop late summer. Looking for some experience with receiving local channels through a KVH M3 antenna with a DirecTV subscription.
Background:
I am in W Michigan and DirecTV programming comes through satellite #101, except local W Michigan channels are on satellite #119.
Contrast that with say NYC, where all programing including local channels come on #101.
DirecTV will not say what areas the #119 covers but does show a huge area of coverage for #101.
Current thinking:
Sign up with a local address in NYC, thus eliminating the need to switch between satellites for local stations, plus have all the NYC "superstations" throughout the Loop.

Is my logic supported by real world experience of any Gold or current Loopers or other long distance cruisers? Thanks
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Old 07-08-2015, 01:15 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sum escape View Post
Will be departing from W Michigan to do the Great Loop late summer. Looking for some experience with receiving local channels through a KVH M3 antenna with a DirecTV subscription.
Background:
I am in W Michigan and DirecTV programming comes through satellite #101, except local W Michigan channels are on satellite #119.
Contrast that with say NYC, where all programing including local channels come on #101.
DirecTV will not say what areas the #119 covers but does show a huge area of coverage for #101.
Current thinking:
Sign up with a local address in NYC, thus eliminating the need to switch between satellites for local stations, plus have all the NYC "superstations" throughout the Loop.

Is my logic supported by real world experience of any Gold or current Loopers or other long distance cruisers? Thanks
No, your thinking is fine. About the only thing you will miss is the local news and weather in the area you are in. Most of that is available on line. Direct TV will give you local service most anywhere if you will call. They just need the address and zip code. We switch back and forth between home and the boat. Since college football games many times are broadcast regionally, and we have a grandson on a team it is important to us to get the games.
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Old 07-08-2015, 01:45 PM   #3
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I would urge you to call KVH and then Direct TV. Some of the KVH units of that vintage, if not all (I had an M2, and the M3 is basically a fully stabilized version of that), have a problem with local channels in several markets due to the switch to HD and digital broadcasting in particular, and how Direct reconfigured which satellites carried SD and which HD. In my case, locals were no longer available at all in most markets as the M2, and I am almost positive also the M3, is an SD system. Before the switch, by the way, I was able to pick up the local New Bern / Greenville channels all the way to Miami and up to New England, though signal quality degraded rapidly.
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Old 07-08-2015, 02:22 PM   #4
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A splitter (or an A/B switch, whatever) and a broadcast TV antenna could maybe solve local station access relatively easily... at least when local stations are within range.


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Old 07-08-2015, 02:30 PM   #5
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To get the national feeds with local NBC, CBS, etc, do this:

Change your service address to:80 Audrey Zapp Dr, Jersey City, NJ 07305. If they ask it is in Hudson County. That is Liberty Landing Marina but don't mention that.

It is very important that you don't mention a boat in the conversation with DTV or change your billing address. Change your service address only.

I told them I was a traveling construction worker that carried my own portable dish.

The only downside to the national feeds is that the local news will report on robberies and murders in NYC rather than Michigan.
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Old 07-08-2015, 02:52 PM   #6
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Everything that has been mentioned above is correct, but let me give you some background on it:


Twenty, thirty or whatever years ago when national feeds for DTV was being discussed in Congress, the RV industry was represented by a heads up lobbyist and they had a Congressman that was an RVer as their front man. As a result the RV industry got an exemption that allowed RV owners to get the national, ie NYC or LA feeds on their DTV system. All others could only get the feed provided by their local station unless you were too far out in the boondocks to get any local station.

The boating industry was asleep and didn't get that exemption as it should have. As a result you have to go through the subterfuge of giving DTV (or Dish) a NYC area address. I don't think that they care if you are on a boat, but it is probably better to keep that under the radar, because some unknowledgeable DTV guy can be anal about having your service address match your billing address. I don't think that is a legal requirement, but why push it.


FWIW, just about everything I did with satellite tv on a boat required me to talk to a supervisor to get it done. The average person who answered the phone didn't have a clue. One wanted to charge me a hardware cancellation fee when I terminated. I told them I bought my hardware from KVH and owned it outright. He couldn't understand that. He told me it was in my contract. I asked him to produce the contract which as a KVH owner I never signed. It took a supervisor to make sense out of it all.


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Old 07-08-2015, 03:36 PM   #7
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djmarchand.

Good information and spot on with RV's vs Boats. I used to really worry about boaters getting discriminated against so I decided to try to do something about it.

While crusing to Maine in 2002 I happened to have my boat at the Capital YC in Washington DC and this issue was very much on my mind.

I contacted BOAT?US and they contacted US Senator Breaux from Louisiana, who was a boater. The three of us drafted a letter to the National Association of Broadcasters protesting this discrimination. The NAB is the main lobbying group for local TV stations. I hand carried the letter to their office in downtown DC and asked for an audience with the head person. This was refused so I left the letter with the receptionist.

Later we all got a letter saying that things were not going to change.

But I tried.
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Old 07-08-2015, 04:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djmarchand View Post
Twenty, thirty or whatever years ago when national feeds for DTV was being discussed in Congress, the RV industry was represented by a heads up lobbyist and they had a Congressman that was an RVer as their front man. As a result the RV industry got an exemption that allowed RV owners to get the national, ie NYC or LA feeds on their DTV system. All others could only get the feed provided by their local station unless you were too far out in the boondocks to get any local station.

The boating industry was asleep and didn't get that exemption as it should have. As a result you have to go through the subterfuge of giving DTV (or Dish) a NYC area address. I don't think that they care if you are on a boat, but it is probably better to keep that under the radar, because some unknowledgeable DTV guy can be anal about having your service address match your billing address. I don't think that is a legal requirement, but why push it.

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Good information and spot on with RV's vs Boats.

I'd have thought it'd be fairly straightforward -- and strictly truthful -- to simply tell the DTV bubbas that we are traveling in our recreational vehicle.

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Old 07-08-2015, 04:09 PM   #9
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Sorry Ranger 42. They want to see the registration of the RV.
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Old 07-08-2015, 04:35 PM   #10
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Sorry Ranger 42. They want to see the registration of the RV.
Absolutely true. But if you happen to own an RV, then.......

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Old 07-08-2015, 05:39 PM   #11
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Ah, too bad.


Although I do have a state registration, too.


Although it does say "vessel" instead of vehicle.


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Old 07-08-2015, 05:39 PM   #12
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Have things changed back to the way they were 5 or 10 years ago? As recently as 2014 I found Direct had personnel that understood the issues with boats; you need to ask for someone, not all reps are trained that way, and KVH can also advise you on who to call.

They were very helpful, or at least tried to be, but it turned out my M2 was obsoleted for local channels due to the change in satellites and technology used in many markets. So went to the external antenna for that, our Panasonic TV had the ability and menu to accept either input and cable so it was very simple. Truth is, we very seldom had the need to use it as we were not very interested in watching TV while cruising (or in general for that matter), other than Ann's strong desire to watch her shows on HBO, Bravo, Showtime et al, and I the occasional horse race or two or three. If you have specific sports needs Direct or Dish as the case may be usually has a package to accommodate that. O f course nowadays, if you wait to be near a wifi hotspot, you folks with existing cable/sattelite at home can have your programming relayed to you via a Slingbox type set up or the various "over the top" services that have come out. For years, our boat was our home, so that was out until we swallowed the anchor last year.
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Old 07-08-2015, 08:08 PM   #13
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I use DishTV with a TailGator portable dish, And can travel about 400 miles before I lose local channels. A 10 to 15 minute call and local channels are changed. You have to provide a street address and zip code. (Google a local business if I'm anchored). Dish is fine with boats and even delivered a new box and helped me set it up on a transient dock.
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Old 07-08-2015, 08:20 PM   #14
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We have Dtv at home (Kansas), on the boat on the Mississippi River north of St. Louis I have a 2nd receiver and a Track me system that uses a regular 20" dish. I get the local Kansas City channels part of the time, 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm depending on the weather. I can watch the local and national news and a program or 2. In my talks with Dtv I've never mentioned a boat when I've had any problem and they have always helped when needed. The thing I like about the Track me is the ability to use any providers dish.


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