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Q: Free to air Satellite systems....? ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: Free to air Satellite systems....?
Category: Arts and Entertainment > Television
Asked by: thomask1970-ga
List Price: $2.00
Posted: 19 Apr 2006 10:36 PDT
Expires: 19 May 2006 10:36 PDT
Question ID: 720647
Can someone PLEASE explain to me Free to Air satellite systems.  How
it differs from 'grey market' or 'black market' satellite systems.

Also can someone PLEASE explain to me how I can tell what Channels I
will be able to get.

I live in a country home and simply want to get some of the major
channels that are otherwise available 'free to air' by antenaa only
slightly outside of my range.

Alternatively provide a url that will give simple answers to these
questions if one is available.

Thank you

Subject: Re: Free to air Satellite systems....?
Answered By: denco-ga on 19 Apr 2006 20:16 PDT
Rated:4 out of 5 stars
Howdy Thomas,

The Sadoun Satellite Sales website has a great Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
page on Free To Air (FTA) systems.  You should read it in detail, but here are
some excerpts.

"Free to Air (FTA) channels are digital channels that are not encrypted by the
service provider and require no subscription or monthly payment. They are
provided free of charge by the provider and are perfectly legal to receive with
an FTA receiver.
- For the C-Band signal channels you will need a 6-10ft dish.
- For KU-band channels you will need a 30 inch dish and up."

The above page also references what is perhaps the definitive site on the FTA
channels that are available, LyngSat.  Here is the U.S. list for an example.

Keep in mind that FTA channels come and go, and they have a number of religious
and "home shopping" channels, but there might be something of interest to you.

The Sadoun website also has a good "Choosing" web page.

"This system will consist of a satellite receiver, HH Motor, dish and an LNBF."

Sadoun also have a page of U.S. based FTA station listings.

All sorts of places sell FTA systems.  Here is an example of a motorized
system from the above website.

System Includes:
~ Fortec Star Lifetime CLASSIC NA FTA Digital satellite receiver
~ Stab HH90 Motor
~ 31" FS80P Dish
~ Universal 0.4dB Single KU LNBF.
Sale $249

You might want to read this other question that I answered on FTA systems.

"Purchasing a Free-to-Air television receiver"

If you need any clarification, please feel free to ask.

Search strategy: Bookmarks and personal experience of the subject.

Looking Forward, denco-ga - Google Answers Researcher

Clarification of Answer by denco-ga on 10 May 2006 11:33 PDT
Howdy Thomas,

If a local channel is available via satellite and it is FTA, then it
should show on the LyngSat listings, as dozens are already listed.

As an alternative, a call to the station should provide the information.

You could ask for the station's engineer for details.

For future reference, you should avail yourself of the Clarification
process before rating an Answer so you can make sure you get all the
details you desire.

Please note my comment of "If you need any clarification, please feel
free to ask" at the end of my answer.

Looking Forward, denco-ga - Google Answers Researcher
thomask1970-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $1.00
The only question remains, who at my local stations would know if they
are available on the free to air systems?  You've helped me understand
some more of what FTA is exactly, however if a station is available on
satelite, should someone in the offices know if their signal is
encrypted/digitalized or 'free' to anyone that can catch the signal?

Subject: Re: Free to air Satellite systems....?
From: neilzero-ga on 19 Apr 2006 16:53 PDT
My C band = big dish system quit working two years ago, so I clicked
on the ad at the top of this page Many of the
channels are still available alacart for perhaps $20 dollars per
month. Packages are slightly more expensive than Dish network or
Direct TV which are less flexible than C band. You can likely buy a
used C band system from a neighbor for $100 or less, but it may cost
you another $100 to get it installed properly even if you do the hard
work such as moving the mast, dish, and wires.
Learning to use the system takes longer and changing channel is slower
than Dish, Direct, or a cable company. Big dish can give you a better
picture than any of the compitition, but snow is a problem if trees
block some of the satellites. With rare exceptions major channels are
not available free, unless you can get them directly with a large and
costly antenna system. Many channels (not interesting to most people)
are available free with a C band system. The black or grey market is
ilegal and you could be prosecuted if you go this route.   Neil
Subject: Re: Free to air Satellite systems....?
From: denco-ga on 10 May 2006 11:20 PDT
Thanks for the tip, thomask1970-ga.

Looking Forward, denco-ga - Google Answers Researcher

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