Freesat not giving complete or permanent pictures

Am I the only one to have problems with Freesat?
No HD at all and very patchy tv in the day; in the evening it gets better…

It is noticeable that HD channels are more sensitive to poor signal conditions.
Maybe your dish needs realigning, or perhaps you need a bigger dish? Possibly your co-ax cable is deteriorating and needs replacement?
Lots of things to think about. Have you checked the signal strength?


No major issues here other than the usual ones (storms, or excessively clear weather).

Something like this ?

thank you very much, How do I check the signal strength. I am in the Lot et Garonne, doesthat makes a difference?

Your satellite terminal (usually in the setup dialogs) should give you an indication of both signal strength and signal quality, if not a quantitative one with numbers (well a percentage value), then at least a graphic that will fluctuate slightly to give an approximate one.
Otherwise, you’ll have to get a signal meter and get up to your antenna and plug it inline to the output of the dish (usually at the LNB exit).

The further south you are, and depending on your geographical orientation and environment (valleys, woods, etc), the more likely you are to have issues, especially if you only have an 80-85cm dish (or dare I say it a 60cm dish). The footprint for signal reception has been continuously narrowed over the years to move optimum signal reception closer to the UK (broadcasting rights issues), hence those living further south needing bigger dishes to pick up the signals.

1 Like

Footprint maps for various UK satellite channels:

1 Like

The important ones for Freesat are 2F/2G, slightly ironically reception in northern France improved with the switch to these transponders.

Down in Lot & Garonne you will need bigger than a 60cm dish.

If the deterioration is recent things to check are - dish alignment, all connections & joints, and whether there has been any water ingress into the LNB or cables (dodgy installers don’t always waterproof things correctly). Water ingress into cables pretty much destroys their ability to carry the very high frequencies needed for a good picture.

1 Like

thank you to you all. I will contact my dish person who has always been very good and tell him to check and replace my 60cm dish by 85? bigger than that the neighbour might object… I am on the top of a hill looking south.

As Alex has said, there is a signal strength/quality meter in your satellite receiver setup software.
For example, with a Sky box, you would tap “Services”, then navigate to “Settings” then “Signal.”
That will give you an indication of what is actually getting into your TV. In good weather, I get around 60% Strength and 85% Quality.
The separate Signal Strength Meter (very cheap on eBay) is a small device that can be connected directly to the LNB on the dish and so is useful for accurately setting the positioning of the dish. It needs a bit of technical knowledge to use this, but accurate pointing of the dish is important.
If you get a good signal at the dish, but not at the TV, that would be an indication that you have a problem with the cable.
Another thing worth looking at, is if there are trees between the dish and the satellite. They could have grown over the years to a point where they obstruct the signal.
Is your dish clean? Rust or lichen could reduce its efficiency.

thanks for your help, TV man coming this evening, I have a Humax, I went to settings, but no signal on the list…
Kind regards

Signal Detection
MENU - Settings - System - Signal Detection
You can check the signal strength and quality of
the searched channels.
Note: We recommend that the Signal Strength
is above 30% and the Signal Quality is
above 70% in order to receive the channels
without picture/sound breakup.

For those interested in the effects of the atmosphere on radio wave / microwave and TV anomalous propagation, I give you this:

As I said, thank you to all of you, TV Man came and sorted it all apparently it needed just a little tweak to the dish. and me who thought it was all the doing of Boris!

We have a Humax decoder for Freesat and it works just fine (including High Def) here on the Vendee / Deux-Sevres border. Sounds like the problem is one of dish size / orientation.

We have had similar probs., but because our dish is ground-mounted it’s easy to get to it. I checked various googles on the subject and found that the ‘skew’ angle on the LNB was a bit out. For around here (Eymet) skew angle is about -17degrees. Degrees are marked on the LNB so it was easy to loosen 2 screws and move it. Incidentally, sig strength and quality are displayed on our Humax ‘foxsat’ (the recording one). When you change to another channel, in the bottom r.h. corner you will see them displayed as horizontal bars, with 3 bands - red, orange, green. They are only displayed for about 5 seconds. The definitive website on TVs satellite and generally anything electronic is satcure dot co dot uk. Terrific website tells you everuthing you might need to know.

dishpointer dot com is an incredible help in checking just what direction the satellite is from your dish and also what height any obstructions in the path will cause a problem. You do need to know your lat. and long. because it presents a googlemaps satellite view of your house with the direction to the ASTRA 2E satellite (you need to select the satellite). As an astronomer I have our lat./long. to 4dp so it was a doddle to check.

Agreed, but in this case Dominique is getting a picture some of the time, so if the dishis is misaligned, it will only be by a fraction of a degree. Fine adkustment is best done with a signal strength meter connected to the LNB.

thanks, that what it was, now fixed.

Where can I buy one of these, in France?