The Kathrein CAP 900 satellite dish and it’s UFS 740 receiver were both removed from the previous motorhome. The pair were duly installed onto the present motorhome. One problem however with a roof mounted satellite dish relates to the weather. During periods of high winds, I generally lower the satellite dish. Consequently, this results in a loss of signal and a loss of TV! Equally, pitching near trees or buildings may present a problem if the satellite is unable to “lock on”. With these two factors in mind, and due to the relatively low-cost, we had arranged for a Vision Plus 550 TV aerial to be installed prior to collecting our ‘van. This all sounds simple enough, having two different methods for receiving TV signals. However, it does create a slight problem inside the motorhome in so far as cables and wires etc.
As a work around and to offer the maximum flexibility, I set up the Kathrein and Vision Plus system as follows.
The Vision Plus system comes with one external aerial “in” and two “co-ax” cables out. The first co-ax cable runs to the front of the motorhome. The second “out line” runs towards the rear, close to the bed. This is perfect for late night movies. I left the Vision Plus co-ax providing TV to the front of the motorhome as per original spec. The co-ax that ran to the rear of the motorhome was disconnected, and instead of delivering signals via the Vision Plus to the rear of the van, this co-ax now carries signals from the SKY receiver. So, at this stage, we have SKY TV at the back-end, with digital TV at the front.
In order to run a signal from the SKY box to the TV point at the front of the motorhome, I used a five metre length of RCA cable – these are the ones with a red, white and yellow connector at each end.
The Kathrein CAP 900 comes with a UFS receiver that will deliver hundreds of channels, from the UK and overseas to your TV. The UFS 740 is connected to the SKY receiver using a standard scart lead.
In summary then, the TV choices are now as follows.
Front TV location – SKY TV, various channels via the UFS 740 receiver, or conventional TV via the Vision Plus aerial.
Rear TV location – SKY TV or channels via the UFS receiver.
Running the RCA cable to the front of the motorhome is easy enough. It just takes a bit of jiggling and juggling to get the cables through some tight spaces. However, it would have been possible to avoid this part of the process. In this scenario, the two co-ax cables would come from the SKY box “out” connections. The co-ax connections then delivers SKY TV via co-ax to the front and rear. In the event of no satellite signal, such as very windy weather or the signal obscured, then these two co-ax cables could be disconnected from the SKY box and be re-connected to the Vision Plus booster box. However, I find that jiggling about with wires in the restricted space of the cabinet above the fridge is not the easiest thing to do. As a result, I felt a one hit solution was best.
A small amount of rubber matting was stuck to the top of the SKY box, taking care not to block any air vents. This allowed the Kathrein UFS 740 to sit still and behave itself when travelling, and avoid sliding about.
UFS 740 – connect a magic eye?
The final thing to do was to connect a “magic eye” to the back of the Kathrein receiver. This allows operation of the remote control even though the receiver is out of sight, and tucked away in a cupboard. A further magic eye can be connected to the TV locations allowing the SKY remove to be used, even though the receiver is not within the line of sight.
I said final thing, but there are a couple of other jobs to do. The mains 230 power lead to the SKY box is presently about one metre long. This will be cut to the minimum just to help keep the cables neat and tidy. Equally, the scart lead from the SKY box to the UFS 740 is overly long. As a result, we are looking for a much shorter version.