How Receiving DISH Network Digital TV Channels Works
Here at InternetLion.com we’re perfectly happy that you’re receiving or are considering receiving DISH Network®’s digital TV channels in crystal clarity. DISH Network has the highest quality picture in the business!
But have you ever considered the mammoth effort it takes to get those very same digital TV channels into your home? Seriously, what actually happens between DISH Network’s broadcasting headquarters, the company’s geo-synchronous satellite, your digital satellite dish LNB and your digital satellite receiver? At InternetLion.com we thought you’d not only like, but want to know. And that’s why we put together the following article explaining everything you’ve ever wanted to know about how receiving digital TV channels works.
How Receiving Digital TV Channels Works
The first thing you should know about digital television channels is how they differ from what you used to watch on your old analog TV. Analog TV signals, you see, used to travel through the air with both the peaks and troughs of their radio waves intact. But this system was extremely inefficient, limiting TV network broadcasters and limiting information transfer speeds in landlines. For these reasons, among others, the U.S. government phased out analog transmissions in 2008 and ordered all TV broadcasters to begin transmitting digital television stations exclusively.
As for digital television stations, they are decidedly different from their analog precursors. Whereas analog signals ate up tons of space with their large signal waves, computerization allowed broadcasters to compress digital television channels before sending them out. This effectively sliced the crests and troughs of the signals’ waves off pre-transmission and opened up tons of bandwidth, allowing more broadcasters to transmit simultaneously. And this, in turn, made it possible for satellite TV providers to offer their customers ever-larger TV lineups of digital television stations.
Now, this doesn’t mean that digital television channels originate with satellite TV providers. Rather, individual networks produce their own programming and program scheduling, then package this in digital signals they “beam” to satellite TV providers via satellite themselves. Satellite TV providers then capture these signals and organize them into lineups, which they then transmit via uplink antenna over a specific frequency range. Often the size of such lineups requires that satellite TV providers break them up and transmit them to multiple satellite transponders using multiple frequency ranges.
Once the service providers’ signals arrive at their geo-synchronous satellites, the satellites’ transponders “retransmit” them toward the Earth. These retransmitted signals are far weaker after having travelled such far distances so service subscribers must use parabolic antennae to receive them. These antennae have relatively large dishes that collect the signals and reflect them to a digital satellite dish LNB located on the antenna’s horn (the portion that juts out over the dish).
Usually satellite dishes have multiple digital satellite dish LNBs in order to capture signals from multiple satellites and on multiple Ku band frequency ranges. These, then, convert the satellite signals into wire signals that can travel over coaxial cable to a customer’s digital satellite receiver in the customer’s home.
Finally, the customer’s digital satellite receiver translates the received signals into something the customer’s TV set can display. This process is a little more complicated than that because it is up to the digital satellite receiver to decrypt the signals, which are naturally encrypted by the service provider to minimize piracy. Then, the digital satellite receiver must convert both the received data and meta-data into the programming experience the service provider intended. But once these processes are complete, the programming travels through one final set of wires to the customer’s TV set where you, the viewer, can finally enjoy them!
The DISH Difference
Now that you better understand the journey that your TV signals go through to reach you, you can appreciate all the more what DISH Network has to offer to their customers. Not only does DISH Network have the highest quality picture in the business and 99.9% signal reliability, DISH Network also offers this on a large scale with the most HD channels in the business, 8 channel packages under $50 and twice as many choices as any other TV provider. Click here to get more information about the benefits of switching to DISH Network today...
Disclaimer: Please note that this article was written when the satellite TV provider DISH was branded as DISH Network. As of 2/1/2012 DISH Network has changed their branding name to DISH. Article post date: 02/06/2011.