I'll TRY to make this as brief as possible, but a lot has happened.
First, I started a year ago trying to learn how to get a decent HD signal in a TT. I learned a ton here, and I appreciate it. Some folks here know a WHOLE LOT. It's sad that dealers don't. I still think someone could get rich getting in this business.
Started out when we got the TT last year. We had Direct TV at home, and wanted to try and make it work on the TT. HD was/is a requirement. So I got the Slimline portable on a tripod and LNBF5 and used the H24 receiver from home when we upgraded to Genie there. Main goal is to get local channels, FSMW (Cardinal games), Weather, etc.
In a way........that works. Heck, I've actually gotten all of the channels I need one time in the last year! I had Direct TV send out a tech and he showed me how to use the little TV and receiver on a card table out by the portable dish to fine tune the signal. Seemed easy when he did it.
Turns out I'm an idiot, I suppose. Because since then, I've never been able (well there was that magic ONCE) to get everything. When I move the dish a TEENSY bit in any direction, some transponders increase and others decrease. And it takes 1-2 minutes to tell.
Couple of weeks ago we were 45 miles from home when the tornadoes hit central Arkansas. I spent hours that afternoon trying to ensure we had a signal, but same old thing.......one thing better, another worse. Never could get local channels. Got the Weather Channel, so we knew something bad was happening. Never mind getting FSMW, that was a lost cause.
I threw up my hands. I'm sure many here are rolling their eyes and saying "Boy, it ain't that hard". But it is for me, for some reason. But I don't go camping to spend hours trying to find a TV signal. Five minutes is plenty!!
So I threw in the towel, asked MORE info here and got it, and then called DISHFORMYRV and got a Pathway X2 and receiver, intending to activate Pay As You Go service.
Equipment showed up and I spent the day trying to make it work. Little dome thing, looks like R2/D2, spends its time spinning around and making little noises. It would try and try and finally get something. I finally got enough signal to call them to activate, and they said they did.
And nothing. The screen that says it's acquiring a signal, and "takes no more than 5 minutes" took 27 minutes one time and 29 another. But I finally got signal. ONLY to come right back to screen saying "Receiver not activated"!! YES IT IS! I paid to start service, picked a package, all that....and they activated my receiver (so they say).
Finally they told me "Sorry, you have to call Dish, not us". ARRGGHH.
I did, got a nice guy. He worked with me for over 2 hours, and every time it would find signal, then come back to "Receiver Needs Activated". Finally I went out at that point and looked, and the Pathway unit is pointed STRAIGHT UP! Unless I'm on the equator, ain't no sats up there! Then it would move and point north. WHY? It found the signal, why did it move?
DISH has me on hold forever, finally they come back and say "Sorry sir, but that model of (physical) dish cannot aquire the INITIAL signal. You'll have to take it to Camping World or somewhere like that"!
I called DISHFORMYRV and blew up (nicely as I could). Lady said Management would call me. Someone did, but it was the tech guy I'd already talked to. I told him what was going on, and he said he was lost, but he'd send out an entirely new dish and receiver. Great! Except I'm going camping next Monday and a) this has to get here and b) I have to go through all this again sometime before I go! (They said they'd activated 3 of these Pathway units today, so DISH's comments were bunk).
And no guarantee it won't do the same thing again.
I swear, if I had it to do over, I'd have bit the bullet and got the Travl'r or whatever it is and let it find Direct TV signal! Now I have a Slimline and LNBF that I can't use, and a Pathway X2 that won't work, at least one month paid for PayAsYouGo, and no TV signal.
I don't know what anyone here can learn from this, but I will tell you I believe I now know more about how this is SUPPOSED to work than anyone I've talked to in weeks. Maybe I should be a paid consultant.