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DStv Releases 6 Series HD Decoder

DStv launches new 6 Series HD decoder on 2nd May 2019.

23 May 2019

Multichoice launched the new DStv 6-series HD decoder on the 2nd of May 2019. This model 6S HD decoder replaces the previous model 5S HD decoder and has the same features and functionality except for the remote control. Gone are the 3 different colours for mode 1, 2 and 3 on the standby button of the 5S remote control. This shouldn't be a problem in a home with only one decoder, but could be confusing where multiple decoders are used, as in a guest house.

The 6S HD decoder is slimmer and more compact than it's predecessor and MultiChoice has gone "Green" as the 6S HD decoder is made up of recycled components. Another interesting fact is that all MultiChoice decoders are manufactured locally - Proudly South African - and the HD decoders are put through high-level manufacturing processes and assembly chains.

If you currently own an HD decoder model 4U, 4S or 5S or Explora model 1, 2A or 3A you will not need to replace or upgrade your existing HD decoder and it remains fully compatible with the new model 6S for XtraView installations of up to 3 decoders which can be linked on one subscription, giving you a 3 viewing environment. (Watch 3 different channels in 3 different rooms at the same time)


DStv Explora 3A Vs. Explora 2A

What are the diffferences between the new DStv Explora 3A decoder and the older Dstv Explora 2A decoder?

27 March 2019

The most visible change to the new DStv Explora model 3A is its reduced size, including a SIM-sized smart card, which was achieved by reducing the component count which we will discuss further. The recording time is unchanged at 110 hours and both the DStv Explora 3A and 2A decoders support A5, A6 & A7 remote controls.

A major change to the Explora 3A is that it has no RF modulator and no RF-IN or RF-Out socket. The RF socket was for the distribution of the heartbeat and RF signals. Now you need to connect your TV to the Explora 3A decoder with an HDMI cable and the Explora 3A sends the heartbeat signal through the Unicable (satellite connection) port via a Smart LNB to your XtraView decoder. No problem here unless you already have your house wired with Tv aerial cable to extra Tv points in your bedrooms. If so you will now need an external RF modulator driven from the RCA sockets of the Explora 3A which is an extra cost.

Another major change is the front display panel that falls away. The smaller, sleeker design of the A3 does not show the channel number which is available on the Tv on-screen menu. How could this be a good thing? When viewing the decoders in an entertainment cabinet, the DStv Explora 2A is something that maybe looks outdated due to it showing a digital number. With only a LED light indicating power on or off, the Explora A3 has less distracting lights. However with the Explora 2A, if your Tv was not connected to the decoder or if something was wrong with your Tv, it was comforting to know that your DStv decoder was working and properly connected to your dish.

The new DStv Explora 3A when sold as Price Lock deal or with an installation voucher, is installed standard with a 2 port Smart LNB (model LNX 502W) which allows for one XtraView decoder but not two. Should you want a second XtraView decoder in your home (3 decoders in total) you will need the 4 port Smart LNB (model LNX 501) which was the standard LNB used with Explora A2 installations. The 4th port of the 4 port Smart LNB was useful in that it could be used for older models of DStv or OVHD decoders.

Cooling also changed with the new DStv Explora 3A decoder, because with fewer sources of heat, the 3A decoder has no fan and only a heatsink for cooling. It is still good practice to keep the area around your 3A decoder well ventilated at all times. It is important not to place any decoder on top of another electronic device without spacers otherwise it may overheat.


Protect your home from lightning damage

What can you do to protect your home from lightning damage?

12 January 2019

Lightning and mains power surge have been a source of much damage to TVs and electronic appliances in South African homes. Thunderstorms are more violent on the highveld than at the coast and lightning does not ask questions, it simply destroys all electrical devices that are in its path. The cost of repair to lightning damaged goods is high and often the damage is so severe that a repair is not possible.

So how do we prevent this? Firstly, we need to know more about what happens when lightning strikes. The electrical sockets in South African homes supply 220 volts alternating current and this is what your electrical appliance is designed to run on. However when lightning strikes power cables it produces a voltage much higher than 220 volts - many thousand volts in fact - and this high voltage is what causes the damage.

It's important to realise that lightning does not have to strike your home directly to cause damage. It can strike the overhead Eskom or Municipal power cables kilometres away and travel through the electrical grid until it reaches the wiring in your home. Static electricity can be picked up by your satellite dish or TV aerial and an electromagnetic pulse can be picked up by any wires in your house, not just mains power wires. This means you should have measures in place to prevent lightning damage from all possibilities.

Here are a few tips to prevent lightning damage: When you notice a storm approaching, it's safest to unplug all appliances and electronic devices from your electrical wall sockets. This is only temporary but can save you the hassle of an insurance claim and a few thousand rands excess payment. Fridges, dishwashers and tumble driers are more robust so people usually leave them connected but it's best not to risk sensitive devices like TVs, decoders and sound systems in a thunderstorm. Remember to also disconnect the cables from your satellite dish or aerial, and not just the power cable.

If disconnecting from the mains power is not possible due to you not being home, you can fit Surge Protection Plugs to your appliances. These plugs are designed to stop the surge of high voltage electricity caused by lightning strikes on power lines getting through your home wiring and into your electronic goods.

For your DStv decoder, you can install an in-line Lightning Protector on the cable from your satellite dish which will prevent the high voltage from reaching your decoder and television.


Get the most from your UHD 4K TV

Are you really watching 4K television on your Ultra HD Television?

5 December 2018

Many people buying a new UHD (Ultra High Definition) 4k Smart Television are disappointed when they get home and find it doesn't look as impressive as it did in the store. Most people live with this disappointment and don't realise they are not getting the 4k (3840 x 2160 pixels) picture they paid for. To see a 4K resolution picture on a 4K television set you need to be aware of the following:

Video Source:

UHD 4k video sources include some Netflix movies, (streaming on a 25meg internet line), some video game consoles, some Blu-ray players, smartphones and tablets. DStv and OVHD decoders do not show UHD 4k video. Outdated video sources do not support 4K viewing. eg. Xbox One X and One S and the PS4 Pro support 4K while the Switch, the original Xbox One and PS4 and the PS4 Slim do not.

Components:

All your hardware components need to be able to handle 4K video content. You should keep in mind that the components between the source and screen such as the HDMI cables and Soundbar should also be 4K capable for you to enjoy 4K viewing. HDMI cables manufactured after 2009 are 4K ready, and if you have older cables or cheap imports, it is a good idea to replace them as high-quality cables are a must.

Brand Names:

4K video content is subject to HDCP 2.2 copy protection. Brand Name manufacturers provide support via their later 4K models, but should you have a no-name brand component (including your TV) you should check the documentation to ensure that it supports HDCP 2.2

Viewing Distance:

Even with all the correct components and a 4k video source, many people who purchase a 4K TV will still not view 4k picture quality on the TV screen due to the viewing distance. (most people sit too far away from their Television). This is not the TV's fault because the TV is displaying a proper UHD 4K picture that is both sharper and clearer than conventional HD (1080 x 1920 pixels) The biomechanics of the human eye is the cause of this problem. Human eyes with perfect 20/20 vision are incapable of resolving all the detail in a UHD 4K image at the distance many people sit from their TV. The same applies to HD 1080 viewing although the distances are further. Below is a chart showing the maximum distance you can sit from your TV without losing picture resolution.

Optimum Viewing Distance Chart

Get the most out of your UHD 4K TV - Ensure that your viewing distance is optimal

By sitting at the optimal distance, you will see all the detail in the picture, if you're looking at a 4K picture, it will look much better than it would at 1080p. As your eyes move further away from the screen, the detail from the 4K image is lost.


HDMI Viewing Quality

Ensure that you are viewing programming in HD High-Definition

21 November 2018

HDMI is an abreviation for High Definition Multimedia Interface, and is a method of transferring digital Audio and Video. It allows transfer of audio and HD (1080) video on a single cable from your OVHD or DStv decoder to your HD Television. It has been used in the home since 2004 and is the most popular and convenient connection for HD TVs.

Did you know that just because your HD Television, DStv HD decoder or OpenView HD decoder supports HD, it does not mean you are in fact watching your programs in High-Definition? So could you get a better resolution image on your TV screen? Yes it's possible! To ensure that you are not missing out on HD viewing there are a few things you could check. Let's break this down into easy steps.

Step 01

Firstly, Check that your device is capable of showing High-Definition programs. Netflix can be viewed in HD if you have a 10 meg data line. OpenView decoders and the newer DStv HD decoders have programs that you can view in High-Definition. Many DVD players and Games Consoles also support HDMI. Check the back of your decoder or DVD and if you see an HDMI port that means you can send HD video from that port, via an HDMI cable to your HD Television. Some early Plasma TVs used VGA cables (Usually a blue plug with 15 tiny pins) or RCA cables (3 plugs - Red, White & Yellow) but these cables are not capable of sending a digital signal, meaning no HD content can travel across these cables. If you have one of these early Plasma TVs or the old box type TV you can unfortunately not view HD video.

Step 02

Secondly, ensure that you are using HDMI cables. An example of an HDMI cable can be seen on the left of the image above. The ordinary TV aerial cable is not capable of transfering HD video and you cannot see a High Definition picture even on the most modern Television if it is connected by the usual TV aerial cable. To see HD pictures you will need to replace your aerial cable with HDMI cable which can be bought in standard lengths of up to 20 meters. For longer distances it is possible to send HD video over CAT6 cable using appropriate converters, but this is a job for the professional installer and not recommended for the DIY homeowner.

Step 03

Confirm that the channel or program is being shown in HD. Usually, programs will notify you that they are being shown in HD, either in the name of the channel or on the actual screen in the corner. Check the DStv channel number you are viewing to be sure that you are viewing the program in HD and not normal/standard definition. Make sure the DVD you are playing is an HD movie.

Done.

Now you can rest assured that you are viewing your favourite shows in the best definition possible.


OVHD PVR Capability

OpenView HD - PVR funtionality now Available

06 November 2018

Did you know that the latest OpenView HD decoder has PVR (Personal Video Recorder) capabilities? This exclusive Open PVR premium feature was launched recently and also a new channel - Open News.

Because we aren’t always available to watch our favourite program at the scheduled time, OVHD was somewhat limiting. But users now have the option to record OVHD programs to view later. Open PVR allows you to schedule channels for timed recordings that can then be viewed at your leisure. Recording can be done on all channels expect SABC and Kruiskyk. You also have the ability to pause, fast forward and rewind recordings. Unfortunately, you cannot pause live TV programs as you can with DStv.

To make use of the Open PVR recording feature mentioned above, simply insert a programmed USB stick into your model NA9200 OpenView HD decoder.

Open PVR USB sticks are currently available in two sizes: 32GB (record up to 160 minutes of HD content) and 64GB (record up to 320 minutes of HD content).


DStv Now

DStv Now - View DStv from mobile devices and Smart TVs

18 October 2018

You can now view DStv on up to 5 devices with the DStv Now App for no extra charge if you are a premium subscriber. This app is available from the Android Play Store and Apple App Store and can be downloaded to most Smart TVs, Tablets and cellphones. The app allows you to stream DStv programs directly to your Smart TV, cellphone, Tablet, and Laptop provided you have one activated Explora DStv decoder. The DStv Now app is available to DStv subscribers, however even if you don't own a decoder, there is a free sign up option which allows limited access to some of the streaming content without the need to subscribe.

Media players that run Android can download DStv Now through the Android Play Store. This means that if you own an Android Set Top Box (smart box), you can enjoy DStv Now from there also. You can stream live sport, other live broadcasts and also movies in the DStv Catch Up library.

Mark Rayner, MultiChoice South Africa’s Chief Operating Officer said: “The idea when we launched DStv Now was to give DStv subscribers a way to catch the big game and their favourite shows while away from home. What’s surprised us is how popular it’s also been as a method of getting DStv content on to other TVs around the home. By adding these new apps we’ve made that process a whole lot easier and more convenient – no fussing with cables or casting, and no decoder needed,”.

It's important to keep in mind that streaming will use your internet connection to stream content to your device, so it's advisable to make use of your uncapped internet connection (DSL and Fibre) to view the content to avoid high data costs. It's possible to watch DStv on your Explora and stream on 4 separate devices simultaneously with DStv Now.

There is talk of the DStv Now app coming preloaded on Samsung, LG and Hisense Smart TVs in the near future, so keep an eye out for that. Meanwhile the DStv Now app can also be accessed through your favourite web browser.

If you feel uncertain about signing up to DStv Now, you can make use of a Free SignUp to get a taste of the full bouquet on offer. This will include some sport, Catch Up titles, the first few episodes of some of the series on DStv and kids programs. Start exploring the DStv Now features for yourself and avoid missing out.


DStv Ends Mobile Service

DStv ends Mobile Services 2018

03 October 2018

The DStv Mobile service will end on 31 October 2018, as announced by MultiChoice recently.

This means that DStv Walkas and DStv Driftas will no longer function after 31st October 2018

Launched in 2010, DStv Mobile used DVB-H (Digital Video Broadcast - Terrestrial) technology. This radio signal allowed users to access DStv channels from a DStv Walka handheld TV or from smartphones, notebooks and tablets using a DStv Drifta mobile decoder. The Drifta received the DVB-H radio signal and converted it to a Wi-Fi signal, allowing smart devices access.

"Over the last few years, technology has evolved as broadband access continues to grow. It's not feasible to continue to maintain a separate land-based, dedicated network for this service alone when an even better service can be offered to our customers on DStv Now via the Internet and Wi-Fi," said MultiChoice.

Multichoice is moving their Mobile services to the DStv Now App which can be downloaded from both the Google Play Store and the iPhone App Store. Using the DStv Now App it is possible to link up to 5 devices to your DStv subscription at no extra charge. For example, mom can watch Soapies on the main TV with Explora decoder in the lounge while dad watches rugby on his laptop in the garage, granny watches movies on her tablet in her flat, daughter watches MTV on her Samsung Note in her room, and son watches cartoons on his iPhone.

MultiChoice announced to customers who currently have a DStv Mobile subscription that they have already switched off certain transmitters, resulting in a loss of reception for some users. Accordingly, MultiChoice will not charge users their DStv Mobile subscription fee from 1st September 2018, and decoder insurance for Walka and Drifta will also be cancelled.

MultiChoice placed recycling bins at its branches in Randburg, Durban and Cape Town for users to dispose of their Walka and Drifta devices.


How to take care of your remote control

DStv Remote Controller Maintenance

29 December 2017

Remote controls are not always easy to replace. If your remote control is lost or broken it may be difficult to find a new original remote, and if you do it may be very expensive. Still worse, you could find that your remote is obsolete (no longer manufactured) A second option is to find a universal remote that will be fully compatible with your device and these often do not exist.

Most features on the electronic device of today are not accessible from the device itself, so a remote control is needed. Take a DSTV decoder for example; it can be switched on and off and you might be able to select channel up and down, but the rest of the functions have to be controlled on the decoder’s remote. Therefore, it is very important to take care of your remote control.

Here are a few tips:

  1. Place your remote control in a plastic cover or Ziploc bag. This will prevent any food, oil, dirt or liquids from damaging your remote control.
  2. Instead of placing the remote control on a chair or sofa where it could be sat on, rather place it on a table, wall unit or in a box.
  3. Do not leave your remote control on top of a warm object like your TV or decoder as this will shorten its life.
  4. Do not hit or bang the remote against something if it does not work, instead, try changing the batteries. Should the problem persist, bring your remote into our shop to be checked.
  5. Check in the user’s manual if the manufacturer recommends a specific type of battery to be used in your remote control. This information can also be found on some controls under the battery cover. Alkaline batteries are usually the best.
  6. Replacing the batteries on a yearly basis will prevent them from leaking and damaging the electronics inside your remote control.
  7. Gently press the buttons on your remote, do not force the buttons or agitate the buttons while pressed in as this may cause the buttons to wear out faster.

If you follow the above tips your remote control should last you a very long time.


DStv Decoder - Hardware & Software incompatibility

DStv Decoder Hardware & Software Incompatibility

22 November 2017

With the fast pace of changing technology, Multi-Choice is continuously writing new software for DStv decoders, allowing more HD channels and user features. This software is however not compatible with the older HDPVR, Dual view, SDPVR and Single View decoders.

If your decoder keeps rebooting, losing signal or missing channels, it is possible that your decoder is not compatible with the new software, which is automatically downloaded at +/- 4 AM every morning. However, it may also be a dish or cable issue. It is for this reason that you should let TV & Video Doctor send a qualified and experienced technician to your home to check your system.


Phasing out of old DSTV users equipment

Why Use newer DStv equipment?

30 October 2017

Frustration arises when you hear that you need to upgrade your decoder or dish and LNB. This is a very misunderstood subject. Let’s try to make it a little easier for you to understand:

Decoders:

The decoder is manufactured with the correct spec of hardware that is needed to run the latest system at that time and that is available on the market. As time progresses, technology changes, the main line being HD and broadcast information.

More and more clients request more channels be broadcast in HD as they have purchased HD tv’s and with the pace that technology changes broadcast information also has to change, it needs to become faster to increase the amount of information needed in short space of time.

So for this to happen Multichoice needs to constantly create new software that enables the decoders to broadcast faster and more HD channels. Your decoder does an automatic software update at around 3 AM every morning, this cannot be stopped as it is also used to repair system issues that may arise. Eventually, it will reach a point where the hardware (decoder) is too old to understand the new software so it shuts down as it cannot read what has been downloaded. At the moment this is the case with the HD PVR decoders.

Dish and LNB:

The dish that gets mounted on your roof or wall, cannot become outdated like the decoder however with the changes in the broadcast information, it is wise to ensure you have an 80cm or larger dish, this is so that it can receive a strong enough signal to allow uninterrupted viewing during bad weather. As for the LNB (the eye on in the front of the dish) this like the decoder can become outdated and needs to be changed, so it will be wise to ask your installer about the latest available LNBs. All the LNBs receive the same information from the broadcaster, however, the difference is the signal that the LNB sends to the connected device (decoder). The latest LNB is called a “smart” LNB which is used for the new 5 series single view decoder and Explora 2. The reason for the “smart” is due to it not only sending a signal to the decoder but can also be used to send and receive the heartbeat signal needed when setting up Extraview and 3rd view. This allows your system to run with fewer cables.


DStv HD Single-View Decoder (New 5-series)

DStv HD Sinlge-view 5-series HD Decoder

22 October 2017

From the 1st November 2017, MultiChoice offers a new version DStv HD single-view decoder. The new DStv is not only smaller in size, but also boasts an embedded Smartcard. This saves the hassle of having to carry around an extra small item that could be lost easily.

The DStv HD Decoder 5-series decoder also comes with a brand new B6 remote controller. DStv has made its new B6 control have the ability to program up to five buttons that will enable you to control your Television set and your home theatre system.

This decoder lacks an RF out socket which is not a problem for new TVs with HDMI or RCA connections but will require an additional RF converter in order to work with older TVs lacking these connections.

Multichoice DStv has recommended users to upgrade to the newer Smart LNB, this will enable users to make use of the new features that DStv has to offer. If you need to upgrade your LNB to the Smart LNB contact TV + Video Doctor!


DSTV XtraView now with 3rd View Capability

DStv XtraView - Now with 3rd View Capability - What you need to know

08 October 2017

Here’s what you need to be able to view DSTV XtraView in your home or business.

  • You’ll need two or three XtraView capable decoders and two or three TV sets – depending on the decoder combination you have chosen.
  • A qualifying bouquet subscription (currently all bouquets qualify).
  • An upgraded installation which must include a minimum of an 80cm dish & a Smart LNB.

Is your existing decoder XtraView compatible?

To find out, let’s have a look at the compatible models below:

  • Standard HD Decoders (1110, 1131 & 1132)
  • SD PVR
  • HD PVR
  • 4U & 4S
  • Explora

Although the above-mentioned decoders are XtraView compatible & are working in many homes, MultiChoice has no longer activated them since about June 2017. Current XtraView systems that use the above decoders will keep working but at some stage, they will need to be replaced with modern decoders.

Multi-Choice will no longer activate the 1110, SD PVR, HD PVR, 2 or 4 tuners on XtraView. We have replaced a few due to XtraView issues.

In any XtraView installation, the use of a smart LNB (Low Noise Block) is recommended.

Currently, if you want to do an XtraView activation you will need any of the new HD decoders – they are the 4u, 4s & the Explora.

In the case of a 3rd XtraView, at least one of the decoders must be an Explora.


Box Office & Catch-up – What to know

DStv Box Office & Catch-up Tips

13 September 2017

The Box Office & Catch-up titles on your decoder may differ from the titles on another person’s decoder. This does not mean that there is a signal issue. It is decided by Multi-Choice who allocates titles selectively according to the cost and rules of the copyright act. If, however, your decoder shows no Box Office or Catch-Up titles whatsoever, then it is possible that there is a signal, decoder or account issue.

Steps to rectify the issue:

  1. Call Multi-Choice to check if your Box Office & Catch-up is active on your selected package.
  2. If it is active, then call TV & Video Doctor to come out & check your equipment on site.
  3. If you would like to have a lot more Box Office and Catch-up titles, including all the latest titles, then let us assist you by connecting your Explora to the internet via your ADSL or LTE WiFi router.

What new features does the new 4U decoder have?

New features of the 4U HD Decoder from DStv

29 August 2017

Let’s take a look:

The Hardware:

The DSTV HD decoder is HD capable, this means better quality viewing for your enjoyment of channels broadcasting in High-Definition. The audio aspect also had a facelift, now offering Dolby Digital 5.1 - blending in perfectly with your surround sound in your entertainment area.

The DSTV 4U HD decoder is packaged with a B5 remote (batteries included). However, the 4U HD decoder is also compatible with the DSTV A5 & A6 remote controllers.

Usability:

The UI (User interface) is brand new and many would say much neater & more organized. The UI has changed for all the screens & menus that you use when watching Television.

There are some new search features, making viewing more accessible when looking for something to watch. Users can look forward to an updated TV Guide!

For XtraView use:

The DSTV 4U HD decoder is XtraView capable & can be linked to an Explora or 4S decoder.


DStv Aspect Ratio Changes

DStv Aspect Ratio - How to Change on all Decoders

09 August 2017

When you view a TV channel, and there is either black on the sides, or on the top and bottom of the picture, or you notice that some of the picture is being cut off, then you probably have an Aspect Ratio issue.

The definition of Aspect Ratio is: "the ratio of the width to the height of a picture or TV screen.

To change the aspect ratio of your DStv Decoder follow one of the procedures below:

For Explora or single view HD decoder (remote control has blue DStv button), you can set the aspect ratio with your DStv remote control.

  • Press the blue DStv button
  • Then use the left arrow button to select "Settings"
  • Then use the down arrow to select "User Preferences"
  • Then press the right arrow button to bring up the submenu.
  • Then use the down arrow button to select " Video & Audio".
  • Then press the "ok" button.
  • Then use the down arrow button to select "Aspect ratio"
  • Then by pressing the right arrow button, you can choose the aspect ratio to suit your viewing.
  • Then press the back button to save your settings.
  • Then press the tv button to return to your picture.

OR

While watching tv press the "ARC" button in the bottom left corner of the remote, however, this is not a permanent setting and will readjust when the decoder is switched off.

Older single view decoders (Remote control has a "shift" button)

  • Press the menu button.
  • Then use the down arrow button to select "Advanced options"
  • Then press the ok button
  • Then use the down arrow button to select "TV installation"
  • Then press the ok button
  • Then enter the code "9949"
  • Then use the right arrow to select the aspect ratio to suit your viewing.
  • Then press ok to save.
  • Then keep press the exit button until your picture returns.

OR

  • While watching tv, press the Shift button, it will light up.
  • Then press the tv guide button.

Repeat the above steps, to choose the aspect ratio to suit your viewing. However, this is not a permanent setting and will readjust when the decoder is switched off.

Older HD PVR decoders (Remote control has a "shift" button)

  • Press the menu button.
  • Then use the down arrow button to select "Personalise"
  • Then press the ok button.
  • Then press the white button to bring up the aspect ratio setup menu.
  • Then use the right arrow to select the aspect ratio to suit your viewing.
  • Then press ok to save.
  • Then keep press the exit button until your picture returns.

OR

  • While watching tv, press the Shift button, it will light up.
  • Then press the tv guide button.

Repeat the above steps, to choose the aspect ratio to suit your viewing. However, this is not a permanent setting and will readjust when the decoder is switched off.

Older dual view or SD PVR decoders (Remote control has a "shift" button)

  • Press the menu button.
  • Then use the down arrow button to select "Advanced options"
  • Then press the ok button.
  • Then use the down arrow button to select "TV installation"
  • Then press the ok button.
  • Then use the right arrow to select the aspect ratio to suit your viewing.
  • Then press ok to save.
  • Then keep press the exit button until your picture returns.

OR

  • While watching tv, press the Shift button, it will light up.
  • Then press the tv guide button.

Repeat the above steps, to choose the aspect ratio to suit your viewing. However, this is not a permanent setting and will readjust when the decoder is switched off.


Rain Fade Explained

The penomenon called Rain Fade - Explained

02 August 2017

If you are a subscriber to satellite TV services, you will know that bad weather often causes signal loss. This phenomenon is called Rain Fade & at the moment there is very little that broadcasters are able to do about it.

High-frequency signals are affected by Rain Fade. DStv & StarSat typically broadcast high-frequency signals to viewers. Rain Fade refers to moisture in the atmosphere absorbing the signals, causing them to attenuate. But it's not just rain that can cause signal loss, if there is snow or ice in the atmosphere, it will also cause the Rain Fade phenomenon.

The DStv broadcasting satellites transmit frequencies ranging from 10.7 GHz to 12.75 GHz

Did you know that it is not only the bad local weather than can cause Rain Fade? If the signal has been sent from another location, and the weather was troublesome, the chances that you will experience Rain Fade is quite high even if there is no cloud in the sky near you. The weather needs to be ideal from the point where it is being broadcasted from, to the point where it is being received. So both places play a role in possible Rain Fade problems.

Typically a 90cm dish is recommended to reduce the effects of Rain Fade. Ensure that your dish is not rusted and cables not cracked by the heat of the sun, as these are also contributing factors.

Often the signal loss is also due to a problem with your installation, in this case, we are fully accredited and ready to assist.


How to Reset your decoder

Resetting of MultiChoice DStv Decoders

19 April 2017

Resetting your DStv decoder is often a quick solution for viewing problems. Some of the symptoms you may experience are:

The remote control has stopped working or the picture is frozen or broken into blocks or channels can't change or audio is missing.

Resetting will clear the temporary data on the decoder RAM (Random-Access Memory) and restore standard settings.

If you've tried resetting multiple times without success, it could mean that your decoder is faulty. Before buying a new decoder you're welcome to bring it to our shop for a free test.

Besides the well-known method of switching your decoder power off and on again there are also specific resetting instructions per decoder model below:

HD PVR 2 Tuner

  • Press the TV guide button for about 5 seconds
  • Press UHF then Play/Pause button, this will take you to a Green screen
  • If you are prompted for a pin code, use 1649
  • Reset the 'Factory Default'

SD PVR

  • Press reset button combination on the decoder
  • Wait for DL to appear
  • Press & hold V- & Play buttons simultaneously
  • Keep holding in the buttons until lights flash on the front panel of the decoder followed with MSK ERASE
  • The decoder will display scan

1131/1132

  • Press & hold STANDBY & P+ buttons simultaneously
  • Wait for red & green lights to flash
  • The decoder will restart

Dual View 820

  • Press the Menu & Down Arrow buttons simultaneously
  • The decoder will display dL, as soon as the display shows 1 & scrolling cursor press down arrow & exit buttons simultaneously, until the three LED’s start flashing/Toggling then release the buttons
  • After the recovery is done, 8888/Scan will be displayed

DSD 720, 720i

  • Press the Power on/off & TV/Audio buttons simultaneously
  • The decoder will display dL, as soon as the display shows 1 & scrolling cursor press TV/Audio & P- simultaneously until the three LED’s start flashing/Toggling then release the buttons
  • The decoder will display scan
  • Remove the LNB cable
  • Boot up the decoder
  • Press the TV guide button for about 5 seconds
  • Press Exit then OK, this will take you to a green screen
  • If you are prompted for a pin code, use 1649
  • Reset the “Factory Default”
  • Press ok & then reconnect the LNB cables

DSD 1110

  • Press the reset button on the decoder
  • Wait for DL to appear
  • Once it appears – press & hold P+ & V- simultaneously until you see flashing lights followed by the message – DONE

DSD 910, 933, 990

  • Press the Power on/off & TV/Audio buttons simultaneously
  • The decoder will display dL, as soon as the display shows 1 & scrolling cursor press TV/Audio & P- simultaneously until the three LED’s start flashing/toggling then release the buttons
  • The decoder will display scan

OVHD Parental Settings

OVHD Parental Control Settings - We are OVHD Accredited Installers

05 April 2017

Did you know that OVHD is Free to View? Here are a few tips if you already have OVHD installed:

Parents can now lock certain mature rated programmes from being shown to their children.

Follow these steps to activate the parental control function:

  • Press the menu button
  • Select settings
  • Select parental control
  • Press OK
  • Enter PIN number 1234
  • Select lock level
  • Press OK
  • Select the level of your choice - PG, 13, 16, 18
  • Press OK
  • Select new PIN
  • Enter a new PIN number of your choice
  • Confirm new PIN
  • Press exit

Reset Parental Control PIN:

If you've forgotten your parental control PIN, please use your mobile phone to dial

  • SES Activation : *120*6843# (If you have a TopTv or Starsat dish)
  • IS20 Activation: *120*6843*1# (If you have a DSTV dish)
  • Select option 3 & follow the instructions.

Detune Your TV set & Save

De-tune your Television Set and Save Money off TV Licenses

28 March 2017

We all know that if you are in possession of a Television set, you need to have a valid TV license in South Africa. To define: This is any device (decoder & TV) designed or adapted to be capable of receiving a broadcast television signal.

But, did you know that you do not need to pay this license if none of your devices can receive broadcast television signal?

How does one accomplish this?

You need to remove the TV tuner from the device & rendering the device incapable of receiving a broadcast TV signal. At TV & Video Doctor we offer this service, bring your device into our shop, we then remove the TV tuner & guarantee our work or your money back.

Tip: Remember to make use of professionals for this service!

Once the TV tuner has been removed the device needs to be checked by an SABC inspector - who charge R300. To ensure that you comply with the Broadcasting Act, No 4 of 1999 - you need to send proof to the SABC yearly that your TV cannot receive a broadcast TV signal.


Extend your HDMI cables!

HDMI over Cat6 Cable Extender - How to Save Money

16 March 2017

Did you know that HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) cables are seldom longer than 15 meters? This is because an HDMI cable distance of more than 20 meters from your Explora to TV loses too much signal strength and so your TV will not display a 1080 HD (High Definition) picture. To make sure that you are using your television set to its full potential, you should run an HDMI cable to your TV and not the typical round coaxial cable which does not carry an HD signal.

That's the reason why the display televisions at shops seem of a better quality.

However, if you run an HDMI cable longer than 20 meters, you may experience loss of quality and sometimes it will not work at all.

The solution to this dilemma is an HDMI Extender, which consists of a transmitter and receiver with Cat6 (Catagory 6 Ethernet) cable between them.

The Cat6 cable can potentially carry the HDMI signal as far as 50 meters (or even 120 meters), depending on the transmitter unit. So you can run long cables to your second or third Television and still see a crystal clear 1080 HD picture.

The HDMI to Cat6 extender is a sure winner if you want to get the most from your expensive HD TV.


Link your DStv Explora Wirelessly

DStv WiFi Connector Installation in Pretoria East

09 March 2017

Did you know that is is possible to link your current DStv Explora to your Wireless router?

This device is called the DStv WiFi connector. To start the Automatic setup, follow the easy step-by-step instructions below.

  • Using the supplied power cable, insert one end into the USB port on the back of the DStv Explora & the other end into the power input on the back of the DStv WiFi Connector.
  • The Power LED on the front of the DStv WiFi Connector should glow solid amber & then change to solid white (confirming it has power).
  • Press the WPS button on your router, followed by the WPS button on the DStv WiFi Connector.
  • Wait two minutes.
  • The Wireless LED on the front of the DStv WiFi Connector will flash white (while the WPS is in progress) & change to solid white (once an internet connection has been established).

For more information about the DStv WiFi connector, contact us today!


Explora Decoders - Old Vs. New

DStv WiFi Comparing Old Decoders and New DStv Decoders

01 March 2017

What are the differences between the two models? It's important to know that there are two versions of the DStv Explora decoder, each with their own respective remote controls.

Here are some of the major changes.

  • The new Explora 2A decoder is much smaller in size & saves space.
  • The old Explora decoder had a 2TB drive, the new one has a 1TB drive.
  • High-Efficiency Video Coding H.265 has been built into the new Explora 2A decoder. Making better use of the smaller drive.
  • The new decoder has halved recording space, but the same space for BoxOffice & Catchup on-Demand.
  • The Explora 2A decoder offers a brand new A7 remote controller with a dedicated button for SHOWMAX.
  • 2-pin plug is the default for the new decoder, as opposed to 3-pin. This saves space.
  • The old decoder had 4xUSB ports, where the new decoder ships with 2xUSB ports, this also saves space and makes the new decoder more accessible.
  • The old decoder also has the Smartcard slot in front, this has shifted to the side on the new 2A Explora decoder.

Is your DSTV system compatible with the 2017 changes?

New Multichoice Satellite Bring Changes in 2017

30 October 2016

Change can be an exciting thing if you are prepared for it, but how will you know if your current DStv system will be compatible with the changes from Multichoice in 2017?

If you have an Unicable switch behind your decoder that has less than a 4 cable feed from the dish your decoder will not work. If you see only 2 cables coming from your dish into the Unicable switch you will need to upgrade your current infrastructure. And a Multichoice approved dish of minimum 80cm and larger will be required to ensure good reception.

Services such as BoxOffice and Catch up along with all channels will be sent on 4 different frequencies in vertical high, vertical low, horizontal low and horizontal high, meaning that your DSTV system needs to accommodate double the signal that it currently does.

If you already have a Quad LNB with multi-switch, a Smart LNB, an IP system or a fibre optic system you will be good to go when the switch overcomes in 2017.

If you still have one of the decoders listed below you will need to upgrade your system before then;

  • Single view decoder models – 660, 720, 720i, 910, 933, 990
  • Dual view decoders, SD PVR decoders, UEC 4-tuner HD PVR decoder

Should you require more information regarding the new changes to come or if you need an accredited installer to assist with upgrading your current system to accommodate this new changes to come, please do not hesitate to give us a call.


New Multichoice Satellite brings changes in 2017

New Multichoice Satellite Bring Changes in 2017

23 October 2016

On Wednesday, 24 August 2016 at 07:16 p.m. Multichoice launched a new satellite called the IS20B from the Guiana Space Center in Kourou, French Guiana.

The IS20B satellite is mainly a back up for the IS20 satellite should something go wrong with the current DSTV satellite.

The new IS20B satellite is located next to the current IS20 satellite to allow the dishes to face the same way. The new satellite will make way for more channels as it allows more bandwidth space.

The new IS20B satellite will use different frequency’s and would require that your current DSTV system needs to be upgraded to be able to see these new frequency’s. If you current decoder is still one of the old SD PVR decoders your decoder will not work on the new satellite and you may need to upgrade to the new Explora decoder with the new Smart LNB.

So how will you know if your current DStv system will be compatible with the changes to come in 2017?

Keep your eye on this space for our next post on "Is your DSTV system compatible for the change in 2017?"


The new Explora 2 & A7 remote

The new Explora 2 and A7 Remote Controller Announced

18 October 2016

Multichoice will be launching the new Explora 2 in mid-October 2016. The new Explora 2 has a much smaller hard-drive (1 TB) compared to the Explora 1 (2 TB) but will be almost 50% more efficient.

Multichoice said that they will be running 2 versions of catch-up services to support the older Explora as well as the new Explora 2 decoder and can record up to 80 hours of HD content.

The Explora 2 will have the same extensive Catch-up services and ability to rent up to 30 BoxOffice movies. It will also have internet connectivity for Catch-up Plus, remote recording and ShowMax.

The new Explora 2 will be launched with the new A7 remote that will have nifty features available. When you pick up the new A7 remote the buttons will illuminate, a feature that would be great for a person who likes to watch TV at night. It also has a function to notify you when the batteries are running low or need to be replaced.

There is also a ShowMax button for one-touch access. The new remote can also be programmed to control TV sets produced by major brands such as LG and Samsung as well as any other electronics such as amplifiers. The A7 remote can also be paired with all the current DStv decoders.

This new Explora 2 decoder and A7 remote will land in stores mid-October 2016 and will retail at R1499.00. This price will be fixed until the end of 2017.


Link 3 decoders in XtraView!

Link three HD decoders on your XtraView Subscription

13 July 2016

Multichoice has recently announced that you can now add a third XtraView decoder to your DSTV subscription. This means that it is possible to view three different channels in three different rooms, all on one subscription. You only pay R85 x 2!

Mark Rayner, CEO for MultiChoice South Africa commented 'We want to equip our customers to have a great entertainment experience in their homes. The ability to connect three decoders under one subscription gives our customers more flexibility to create a set up that suits their family,'

Remember, the older decoders do not support this 3 decoder arrangement feature through XtraView. As a DSTV subscriber you must use a DSTV Explora decoder as your primary decoder, then link any combination of DSTV HD decoders or DSTV Explora in this three decoder arrangement finally making it possible to have three independent viewing environments!

StarSat Installer
Accredited DStv Installer Centurion Midrand Pretoria
ElSat Accredited Installer Pretoria
Mulichoice Accredited Installer Lyttelton
OVHD Accredited Installer
TopTV Installer