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Old 10-12-2016, 02:42 PM   #1
30+ year RV'er
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Manassas, VA
Posts: 24
Dish Wally requires all 3 sats - Beware, recommend 211z

The new Dish Wally receiver requires all three satellites be acquired on either the Western or Eastern arcs in order to view programming. If it can't find all three, then it just responds with something like service not available and becomes inoperable. This applies to Wallys that use portable dish antennas such as the Pathway X2, Tailgater, etc.

For example: the portable dish antenna is set up outside and cabled back to the RV, then the receiver is plugged in, it goes through a check-switch process to identify the portable dish antenna, and then locates and self-aligns to the three satellites on the selected or default arc. If during this initial start up process a Dish 211z receiver locates fewer than three satellites, then it gives an error that all satellites were not found, that some programming will not be available, and gives the user a choice to "Rescan" (to try and find all three satellites) or "View" (to watch the programming available on the satellites it did find).

The current Wally software has no option to "Rescan" or "View". The initial start up simply FAILS with NO user options. Therefore, in cases where all three satellites are not available during initial start up the Wally becomes inoperable.

[The only workaround is if the satellite at 72 orbit is available on the Eastern arc, then you can set the Wally for using two receivers (even if you only have one) and it will look for only the one satellite at 72 on the Eastern arc. Many portable dish antennas (such as the Tailgater) use only the Western arc, so this isn't an option.]

So until Dish upgrades the Wally's software, then the Dish 211 series receiver may remain the best option for RVers because when it finds fewer than 3 satellites, the receiver gives the option to "View" the satellites it CAN find. For most RVers, that's important because in many cases some satellites are obstructed!

The software can be considered fixed when someone can post that when fewer than three satellites are found, the Wally offers the Rescan/View option - as opposed to how it currently becomes inoperable now.

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Old 10-12-2016, 03:33 PM   #2
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That is a giant oversight in design. We recently stayed in 28 campgrounds with our Tailgater/211Z and in at least 5 we couldn't get the 129.

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Old 10-12-2016, 03:39 PM   #3
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Great info as I'm looking on adding Dish and the Wally seemed liked the latest greatest. Have you spoken to anyone at Dish to see if software upgrade is in works or if that's just the way it's going to be
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Old 10-12-2016, 04:11 PM   #4
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Thank you for your info. I was just getting ready to order a Wally for its' smaller size and RF remote which means I could keep it in a cabinet not alongside my TV. I'll stick with my old reliable 211k.
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Old 10-12-2016, 04:14 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by sgtlm17 View Post
Great info as I'm looking on adding Dish and the Wally seemed liked the latest greatest. Have you spoken to anyone at Dish to see if software upgrade is in works or if that's just the way it's going to be
I haven't spoken to anyone that knowledgeable at Dish - most just read from a script. The Wally though is very light and appears to have gone to a switching power supply. Why is any of this relevant? First, it appears to be basically a cpu driven by software - so I think this fix will be a software solution. That's good because it means there should be no hardware that interferes with making the Wally have options like the 211z. So an upgrade is possible, just enough Dish customers need to request it.

The switching power supply is neat because it is not as sensitive to voltage changes and pulls very little power. So little (15 watts typically, 25 watts when steering the Pathway 2X) that it can be run off a battery with a 150 watt inverter when dry camping. So we're hoping for that Wally upgrade because it is as you say, the latest greatest. In the meantime, we're back to the 211z.
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Old 10-13-2016, 12:32 PM   #6
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Concur! Pulled the trigger on my buy a tad early as well..... and would add a SOLID 3 SIGNALS is best for the initial sw download to the Wally! Took me forever to get past that screen !!

A good Internet connection for the apps/weather to function helps too!

My disappointment is the additional programming info (cast, reviews, etc) aren't functioning. .... and I think that shortfall contributes to why my SEARCH will only search channel names - no title or actor/cast member searches..... yet!
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Old 10-13-2016, 12:57 PM   #7
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I contacted DISH shortly after the Wally came out they advised me about the software issue and said they are working on a fix. Seems this should have been done before it it the market!
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:44 PM   #8
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Thank you for posting this information!
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Old 10-13-2016, 04:17 PM   #9
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Thanks for the info. Hope DISH is working on an update!
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Old 10-13-2016, 05:04 PM   #10
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Thanks for protecting me from the Wally-folly. I was just about to bite on the Camping World Wally sale that's going on now. Guess my 211Z will be good enough for my King Tailgater for now.

By the way, interesting reception anomalies while camping in Southeast OK the last 12 days. When first setup, I got 110 and 119 strong (but never 129). So I had CNN and a some others. Then on day 3 a bunch of channels disappeared (no weather or blockage or movement changes).

On day 6, I setup a 6 man tent next to the RV and just to the left of the table that I had my King Tailgater sitting on. Guess what the missing channels came back! So I figured I must be accidentally enjoying some kind of reflection that was benefitting the sat signal. But then with no changes to the setup, some days the additional channels were visible, other days gone. Remember the weather and obstructions were clear and unchanged from day to day (except that tent setup day).

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