We have had a couple of different systems over the years so I’ll try to add my $.02. Sorry this is long.
You have several options with the first being which provider. This is important because most of the dishes from one provider won’t work with the other provider. We have had Dish at the house for some time and went with them. So all the references from me will relate more to Dish than Direct but they are almost the same. We currently have a 211Z receiver but may move up shortly.
There are from what we have found 3 different styles of dishes to choose from, the portable fixed unit, the portable electric unit and the roof top system.
The portable fixed would be my choice if we stayed in one place for a long time because; it offers great reception and is the least expensive. The down side is every time you setup you have to go through the process of manually aiming the system, which can take a little while. About $100.00
Seems like the portable electric is the most popular option. Simply hookup the coax cable set it out with a good look at the southern sky and it finds the satellites. First downside is it will only look at one satellite at a time so everything you watch/record at a given time has to be on that particular satellite. (Not really a big deal)
You have several different styles to choose from with the Tailgater being the most popular. We had one for a short time. We found the reception to be less than ideal and had complete signal loss when it had to change satellites. So we took it back and got a Winegard Pathway X2 and used it for over a year and it worked well but again had to move from one satellite to the other and set it up and take it down. They are around $3-400.00.
2015 was a good year for business so I gave myself a bonus of the Winegard Trav’ler right after the first of the year. (We use the trailer both for business and pleasure.) Mr.T this is also for you. My 36CKTS was prewired for the Trav’ler.
CC ran coax from the living room TV and the bedroom TV to a spot on the roof kinda above the front door. They also ran a control wire harness from that same location to the little closet in the bedroom.
I did a lot of research and decided to do the install myself. (Get a PDF of the wiring diagram.) I unscrewed the plate from the closet and my wife fished out the harness. (smaller hands) I had gone up on the roof a couple of times and knew about the sticker that said cut here.
My wife and I hoisted the dish up on the roof (the most difficult part) and I found a good spot to mount the system and followed the instructions and you tube video’s to the letter. I spent more time on placement than anything else. I screwed down the Trav’ler by hand so as to not strip anything then ran all the wires, plugged everything in and used a couple of tubes of Dicor. Tested the system and it was perfect.
The Trav’ler has been by far the best system and the easiest to setup and take down (just push a button). The reception is the same as the dish on the house. But it is by far the most expensive at +$1200.00 for the Trav’ler and plate and a couple of hours to install. (The install really takes less than an hour but I took it real slow before I poked a hole in the roof.) I probably have a little over $1300.00 in this.
There a bunch of other options to choose from but this should get you started.