Old DStv decoders will likely become obsolete

By Jamie McKane for MyBroadband

MultiChoice recently announced the launch of its first channel being broadcast on high-band frequencies, utilising the company’s new DStv satellite it launched in 2016.

The new channel is a Nigerian channel named NTA International, which offers local news, current affairs, and general entertainment.

NTA International may not be accessible for DStv customers with older decoders due to the fact that it is broadcast on high-band frequencies.

Certain older decoders and installations are unable to access content on high-band frequencies, which could prove problematic as new channels come online.

MultiChoice said it was working with customers to upgrade their decoders to support high-band frequencies.

High-band frequencies
MultiChoice told MyBroadband that while it has no plans to move existing channels to high-band frequencies, new channels which launch on DStv may make use of the high-band frequencies.

“We have no plans to move existing channels to high-band frequencies, as they are already allocated to frequencies on our satellites,” MultiChoice said.

“New channels and services still to be launched may be broadcast from high-band frequencies as that is where additional satellite capacity is available.”

“It also depends on whether existing channels are terminated, freeing up space on low-band frequencies,” the company added.

MultiChoice said that while new DStv channels will not necessarily be launched on high-band frequencies, this is where they will most likely be broadcast.

“New channels and services still to be launched will most likely be broadcast from high-band frequencies.”

MultiChoice has been preparing to broadcast on high-band frequencies since 2016, and has upgraded many customers to installations which support the technology.

“We expect that the vast majority of our customers will be able to continue to enjoy their DStv, including any new channels and services added on high-band frequencies in future,” it said.

Outdated decoders
There are a number of older DStv decoders which will not be able to view DStv channels broadcast on high-band frequencies.

These include the DStv SD PVR decoder in addition to other PVR and Explora decoders in certain configurations.

“There are also a handful of installation types that cannot receive signals on both high and low-band frequencies,” MultiChoice said.

The models listed below need to be updated to receive both low and high-band frequencies:

DSR 3000 (SD PVR Decoder) in any installation.
TDS865IMC (2-tuner PVR) in an XtraView installation.
Explora 1 or 2 with a twin LNB installation.
TDS850IMC (4-Tuner decoders) with twin LNB installation.
Single cable installations in a multi-unit dwelling or complex with communal dish/distribution.

MultiChoice added that there are relatively few customers who still have these installation types, and the company offers these users “fantastic” upgrade deals which include product installation.

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