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RG-59 Cable

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Old 03-30-2010, 08:57 AM   #1
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Default RG-59 Cable

I just moved into a new house and have discovered that the house is wired with RG-59 cable. I had direct tv out to do my install last week and they informed me that they could not do the install with the RG-59 cable. I was then looking into getting the places where I want TVs placed, rewired with RG-6 cable and the technician I talked to on the phone informed me that they could install my direct tv with the RG-59and it should work just fine. So now I am confused.

The previous owners of the house had direct tv installed and there is an RG-6 cable running from the satellite into my furnace room downstairs. There is also another grey RG-6 cable going into my furnace room which I think is a signal amplifier.

From my furnace room to the two rooms where I want the TVs placed is only about 12 ft and 24 feet. There is RG-59 run to these two locations.

My questions are:

1: Should I just rewire the two runs that are RG-59 with RG-6 cable and be done with it? This will require some holes to be put in the drywall as the RG-59 cable seem to be stapled down.

2: Should I just have the direct tv installed using the existing RG-59 cables and hope that it works and I don't have too much signal loss?

3: If I decided to go with Dish Network instead of Direct TV would my situation be any different using the RG-59 cable?

Thanks for your time.

Ben
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Old 03-30-2010, 12:49 PM   #2
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You need to have rg6 cable for DIRECTV.

It's always been that way.

I'm not sure why the technician on the phone said rg-59 was ok.
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Old 03-30-2010, 01:26 PM   #3
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RG59 has a higher signal loss, and shouldnt be used AT ALL. But shouldnt doesnt mean it cant. Your experience will vary. But dont expect an install tech to try to use it because if anything goes wrong, he will be held responsible.
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Old 03-30-2010, 01:38 PM   #4
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I believe the tech that gave the info that we could use the RG-59 said he would use an SWM 8 or single wire multiswitch.
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Old 03-31-2010, 07:29 AM   #5
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Before my upgrade, used existing cable system rg59, probably because I didnt know any better and the installer was allowed to take a shortcut. Watched the training videos for installs of new 5lnb and mpeg4 systems and they stressed that rg-6 be used. Installer of my upgrade also insisted on using new rg-6 run and shook his head when he saw what was in place. I would say do it correctly now, any problems down the road and you will be second guessing if the wire is to blame. Like drinking bourbon from a paper cup vs. the bottle. Maybe you notice a difference, maybe you dont, or maybe it eats a hole through the bottom! cd
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Old 03-31-2010, 09:02 AM   #6
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The self install training videos for the 18 inch dish I installed in 1996 said to only use RG6.
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Old 03-31-2010, 09:44 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johns70 View Post
You need to have rg6 cable for DIRECTV.

It's always been that way.

I'm not sure why the technician on the phone said rg-59 was ok.
No... you don't. While using RG6 is better, it's not necessary for DirecTV. As long as the signal comes through ok, the OP will be fine with RG59. Way back when I was a DirecTV customer, I ran some RG59 cable by myself. It was a good length run (at least 20') and I had no issues whatsoever with the signal.

To the OP - just call DirecTV to do the install. The installer will check the signal levels, and if everything's fine, you should be good to go. If not, then he'll replace the cabling for you.
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Old 03-31-2010, 02:35 PM   #8
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You're absolutely right.
Thanks for correcting me.

While using RG6 is what all the DIRECTV documentation says you have to use, I guess you could use speaker wire as long as the signal comes thru OK.

To the OP - If another DIRECTV installer comes out to do the install they'll probably refuse to do the install using RG59.

Last edited by johns70; 03-31-2010 at 04:50 PM.
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Old 03-31-2010, 05:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johns70 View Post
You're absolutely right.
Thanks for correcting me.

While using RG6 is what all the DIRECTV documentation says you have to use, I guess you could use speaker wire as long as the signal comes thru OK.

To the OP - If another DIRECTV installer comes out to do the install they'll probably refuse to do the install using RG59.
No, speaker wire won't work. As for installers refusing to do the install... if the RG59 is already there and there's no signal degredation as a result, I can't imagine they would. In fact, I had that very situation. When I first got my DirecTV TiVo, the installer had to run a second line to my main TV. He looked at the line that was there already (the RG59) and was surprised to see it. I mentioned that I installed it myself, and he asked if I was having any signal issues. I said 'nope'. He then asked if I wanted it replaced with RG6. I said 'no need'. It was really late, and I just wanted the install done, knowing that I could upgrade to RG6 at a later time, myself, if I wanted. He just shrugged, and installed the second cable.
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Old 04-01-2010, 10:11 PM   #10
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The quality of wiring whether RG6 or RG59 play a large role. Quad shielding keeps signal loss and ingress to a minimun. The quality of the core, Solid copper is better than plated.
And over time, all wire degrades. One tech will talk you into replacing it, if he benefits, ie custom money, more hourly labor, etc. Another tech will offer to replace it or do it for free because he doesnt want a trouble call after install if the line doesnt hold up. And another will leave it since it is currenly working. It should primarily fall upon the subscriber, If you choose to have the line replaced, be expected to pay for it, If you choose to not pay for it and leave it, If it does cause problems down the road, you should be held responcible for replace cost and a truck roll at that time.
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