SKY+ Freesat+ and Replacing your minidish LNB
1. Replacing your minidish LNB
2. Replacing the cable
3. Missing channels
4. Tuning the RF channel
5. I have only one LNB feed.
Quad-output" or "OCTO" LNB
This can feed up to four separate single-input receivers (eight with an OCTO) or two twin-input receivers or a combination. Each receiver has independent control of polarisation and band via 13/17 volt switching and 22 kHz on/off respectively.
This LNB is also used with the Sky+ or Freesat+ Digiboxes that have two LNB inputs and internal Hard Drives for recording a programme while you watch another. Two LNB outputs go to this "Plus" Digibox and the other two LNB outputs can go either to two standard Sky/Freesat Digiboxes or to one other "Plus" Digibox.
Note: An oval "minidish" requires a Sky minidish LNB with spigot fixing. A standard circular dish normally requires a standard 40 mm neck LNB. Please check the fitting before ordering.
Note: our OCTO LNB appears to be a poor match for the Triax Sky minidish. The supplied adapters aren't long enough to set it at its optimum focal position and they need to be secured with tape. (This is all we know at present).
Note: Sky have changed the design of the dish and LNB several times over the years. There is no guarantee that the LNB you buy will fit or, if it fits, will sit at the true focal point of the dish - unless you do your homework first.
For this reason, it's better to buy a complete dish and LNB kit. If you want to buy just the LNB, click here for more information. Measure your dish arm internal width and thickness.
You'll also need to add a cable run from the LNB to your Digibox. You can run a single cable or you can replace the existing cable with twin cable ("shotgun"). Shotgun cable comes in two sizes. A very thin type (CT63), which is OK for up to 20 metres and fits through the existing 10 mm hole in the wall, or a high quality WF100 type which is recommended.
Sky "Minidish" upgrades
We can supply an LNB upgrade kit for your existing dish or a complete dish kit. MORE INFO.
Some dealers, who are either unscrupulous or simply know no better, are offering a standard Twin-output or Quad output LNB with an adapter to fit the "minidish". The adapter fits a treat. Unfortunately, the LNB will not give optimum performance because it's designed for a circular dish - resulting in "rain dropout" during bad weather.
All the LNBs on our "Sky LNB" page are designed for use with an oval minidish.
However, you may prefer to buy a standard circular (as seen by the LNB) dish of, say, 60 cm diameter and use a standard 40 mm neck twin-output or quad-output or OCTO LNB with this. The match and fitting will be perfect and the "rain dropout" will be very rare in England.
For more information about the various types of LNB, click HERE and HERE
The only Sky LNBs available now (2013) are the MK4 type. These are distinguised by the plastic bracket that fits over the dish arm sadlle-fashion. (Earlier types slid inside the arm). To fit the MK4 LNB to a MK1 dish (with internal arm dimensions 23 x 10mm) you'll need to bodge it with a self-tapping screw. Later dishes (28 x 18.5mm) simply need an adapter.
Replacing the LNB
First, look in the onscreen menu and make a note of your current signal level and signal quality and write them down as a percentage. Note the rotational angle ("skew") of the LNB. This is most easily done by observing the angle at which the cable(s) come out. Normally this will be about "twenty to the hour". The new LNB must be fitted with the same "skew" position.
Ensure that your minidish is firmly fixed in place and no bolts are loose.
Later (MK4) LNBs have a plastic channel that fits over the arm, saddle-fashion. Some LNBs are secured to the arm with a little plastic pin under the dish arm. Pull this out with a pair of cutters or similar. Some LNBs have a little locking tab visible in a hole under the dish arm; pressing this tab or button into the arm can make removal easier.
For "spigot" LNBs, hold a piece of thick card or thin wood against the LNB face (the part nearest the dish) and tap it away from the dish with a mallet or block of wood. Its spigot should pop easily out of the hollow metal arm.
If a rubber "boot" is fitted, slide it down the cable. Otherwise, with a sharp blade, cut away the black self-amalgamating tape from the cable connector and unscrew the connector. You may need a suitable spanner (10 mm or 11 mm).
Fit the new LNB to the hollow dish arm (using the adapter provided if necessary.)
Reconnect the cable, fitted with weatherproof rubber boots, or seal it with self-amalgamating tape.
Most modern LNBs have a slide-down cover. These need no rubber boots or tape. Simply fill the inside of each "F" plug with silicone grease to keep out condensation. Make sure the copper wire is coated.
As the additional weight of the LNB and cables can make the arm sag, you may find that the dish needs adjustment now, and again after a week or two when the arm has sagged more. The best recommendation is to fix a piece of piano wire, fishing line, or strong non-stretchy nylon cord to a hole in the top lip of the dish. Pass the other end of the wire/cord around the LNB and adjust it so that it supports the additional weight.
The Sky MK4 LNB has a pull-down rain cover and a plastic bracket that fits saddle-fashion over the dish arm.
Always apply silicone grease to the copper wires inside the 'F' plugs. The grease will protect the connections from oxidisation, caused by condensation, which otherwise occurs and causes intermittent "no signal" problems.
For more information about aligning the dish and setting the LNB "skew" (if necessary) click HERE.
Read the rest of this page, below, for more information.
Replacing the cable
You can add another single cable or use twin cable. You can buy two types of twin ("shotgun") cable in black or white:
WF65 which is thin enough to pass through the original 10 mm hole in the wall. However, it has about double the signal attenuation compared with "normal" cable so it can only be used for about 20 metres maximum unless you fit a larger dish to compensate for the inevitable signal loss.
WF100 which is a 7 mm diameter high quality "CT100" equivalent with a foam plastic dielectric that resists kinking and prevents rainwater from running down the cable, as can happen with an air-spaced dielectric.
Click HERE for more info. about cables.
Are all the LNB outputs identical?
Yes, they are all the same (except on a Quattro LNB - but this type won't fit a Sky minidish).