In one of my articles recently, I discussed how you can setup a C-band or a Ku band lnb on your decoder. In today’s article, I shall be talking about ways by which you can identify(at a glance, the difference between a Ku Band frequency and its, C band counterpart.
For you to be a guru in free to air channels, you need to be versed with the ku band and Cband frequencies. Many Free to Air satellite TV newbies usually struggle to know the difference between Ku band and C band frequencies. But today I will explain the difference between Ku Band and C band frequencies. It’s obvious that Satellite communication is used for a wide range of applications like Vsat and Weather Applications and lots more.However, in this context, I shall be limiting myself to Satellite TV reception only.
NOW THE DIFFERENCES FULLY EXPLAINED
Below is a typical C band frequency:
Characteristics of C band frequencies
- They only have four digits. You can count them literally.
- The C band frequency range is 3.7 – 4.2 GHz (or 3700 to 4200 MHz) GHz and MHz stand for Gigahertz and megahertz respectively.
- Because of the low frequencies, C band waves have longer wavelengths.
- Since we are talking bigger wavelengths, then a bigger dish is required to receive such frequencies.
- Prime focus dishes are used to receive C band frequencies.
- The smallest commercially available Prime focus dish is 1.8 metres.
Like the Cband below is a typical Ku band frequency:
Characteristics of Ku band frequencies
- They have five digits, one more than C band frequencies. This is the most noticeable difference.
- The Ku band frequency range is 11.7 – 12.2 GHz (or 11700 to 12220 MHz) Notice how these frequencies are higher than the C band frequency range.
- Because of the higher frequencies, Ku band waves have shorter wavelengths.
- Shorter wavelengths mean that you need a smaller dish to receive these frequencies.
- Offset dishes are used to receive Ku band frequencies.
- The smallest commercially available Offset dish is only 65cm in diameter.
Now we are going to get into more details about reading frequencies provided by a satellite TV company. The two frequencies I have mentioned above are supplied by Intelsat 20 satellite positioned at 68.5 degrees East. This satellite has both C band and Ku band transponders. You can receive the C band TV stations by installing a 1.8 metre Prime focus dish. There are universal LNB’s that can get both C band and Ku band Frequencies.
Now if a satellite TV company provided you with something like this(In this case you have a Ku Band):-
11801 V 27500 or
11801 Polarity, V Symbol Rate 27500 or
11801 V 27500 ¾
Whatever method the TV Company uses it’s somehow universally accepted that the first batch of numbers is the frequency. In this case, it is 11801. The next thing that comes is the Polarity (either V or H for Ku band) and lastly the symbol rate. Although not needed some TV providers usually provide the FEC Rate like the third freq above.. (FEC rate stands for Forwarding Error Correction rate)
This is another Frequency that may be provided, in this case a C band frequency:
4137 R 5530
Notice how the Polarity is now R. (C band frequencies can either be V, H, R or L)
Now you know how to recognise at a glance a ku band or a cband frequency band. You will no longer get confused as a beginner.