This post was most recently updated on August 22nd, 2019
DStv Xtraview setup errors can send any satellite installers into panic mode. luckily, all other things being equal, we have a solution for this error. The most dreaded of all the errors is the E143-0 and E143-4 errors. The error will display on your screen as “No communication from Primary Decoder E143-0” or as “waiting for communication from primary decoder” in this post, we shall be using our knowledge and experiences including the tips gathered on DStv forum to fix Xtraview E143-0 error which usually occurs during or after xtraview installation.
Types of E143 Errors
We have to common E143 errors during Dstv xtraview installation. These are:
- E143-0 which is commonly due to wrong installation/connection or failed authentication from DStv
- E143-4: Most of the time, this error is called “waiting for primary decoder error and it occurs when you combine mismatched decoders or incomplete connection
Forms of E143 Errors
- During installation: e.g, it didn’t work at all works and failed
- Post-Xtraview Installation: That is, it worked at first and failed later or it works only at certain times or distances.
What Exactly triggers the DSTV error e143-0/E143-4 Errors?
no communication from primary decoder error(e143) can happen after a power cut or if the decoder(s) were switched off at the power source.” OR after a software upgrade on either of the decoders
- First off, the problem could be caused by multichoice who may have not sent the required signal to your xtraview subscription. Certainly, DStv can tamper with the HB signal levels from their end. Hence if your previously working xtraview just stopped working after you change your decoder or upgrade/downgrade your subscription, Multichoice should be held responsible.
- The DSTV error e143-4 and e143-0 is triggered when the secondary decoders are not getting a signal from the primary decoder. This signal is called the heartbeat pulse and it travels along DSTV aerial cable to reach its destination.
Reasons why error 143 Occurs on DStv Xtraview Configurations
Basically, error 143 occurs as a kind of anti-piracy move. For example, old decoders will lose signal if place farther than 7-meters of the primary decoder while newer DStv decoders(like exploras) can survive and get signal from within 30-meters of the primary decoder.
- Multichoice uses the DSTV error e143-4/e143-0 to stop a secondary decoder from working when it’s not connected to the primary decoder.
- This prevents the secondary decoder from being placed too far away from the primary decoder like in someone else’s’ home in another suburb.
- Summarily, this keeps fraudulent users in check in case they want to share DSTV accounts across 2 households.
Causes Of Error E143-0/E143-4 During Xtraview Installation
These problem has mentioned earlier can be as a result of your hardware/connection setup or has a result of Software or within the decoder setup. We will first deal with the within the decoder setup before proceeding to that of the hardware.
Meanwhile, let us list some basic requirements for a successful DStv extra view/xtraview configuration.
What you need before Opting for Xtraview
- You must have a DStv Xtraview compliant/capable decoder. Such decoder inludes HD PVR 2P, single view 4-series 4S and 4U, Single view HD 5S and 5U, all explora models such as Explora 1, 2A and 3a. Then the new DStv 6-series decoder. older DStv decoders like the SD decoders can no longer do xtraview.
- Secondly, you need either a smart switch 24-1Z, Smart LNB(LMX500, 501 or 502). I will recommend you get the SLNB LMX501 if you don’t have any of the aforementioned devices.
- Pay for a Dstv Xtraview compliant bouquet and also pay for the additional extra view fees. Mind you, you need to pay for one subscription and 2 extra view fess if you want to connect 3 decoders.
- If you are using a DStv decoder that doesn’t come with an inbuilt diplexer for the heartbeat signal, you need to buy a diplexer for your older decoders. the decoders in this category include Explora 1, DStv single view 4-series and older. they have RF in/out but lack inbuilt diplexers.
it is a fallacy to write off the 143-4 errors as only due to a wiring issue. The primary cause of this error is first and foremost an issue with the XV setup! The XV setup MUST be eliminated first before scratching around in an existing installation that worked before an upgrade of a decoder.
Fix Xtraview E143-0 error with respect to Within-the-Decoder Settings
Now, certain settings must be correct before all your secondary decoders can communicate with the primary decoder. I will be given you hints on this. Your user bands and frequencies are important and they must not be in conflict with each other.
Similarly, you must setup the decoder from within the network settings correctly. For example, your decoder 2 must be set up as decoder 2 using the quick DStv installation wizard. same applies to decoder 3.
How to complete the within-the-decoder Xtraview setup
- Firstly, switch off all the decoders, then start with the primary and set the user band. Once you are done, switch off the primary decoder and do likewise to the secondary decoders individually. You can check if the user band setup was done correctly by pressing the help button of the remote, scroll down to General Information and then right to Information Central and press OK. The Decoder Setup Type should read Decoder 1 for The Primary and Decoder 2 for the first secondary decoder and Decoder 3 for the last one. If this is not so, restart the installation wizard for the secondary decoder(s)
- Secondly, check the Xtraview status of all the decoders by going to the “Extraview status” option right at the bottom of the “general information” drop-down menu. As a matter of fact, all decoders need to show their Extraview status as active. You have a problem if you have more than one primary decoders. Similarly, there’s also a problem if you have no primary decoder listed. If you have no primary decoders, you need to call Multichoice to rectify this before you continue onto the next stage of the fix
- Next, switch on the primary decoder, and after it is fully booted, switch on the secondary decoders. All the decoders should now complete the reboot cycle. And work receiving Dish on CH 100.
- Now call Multichoice to set up your Xtraview subscription if not already set up. Everything should work. If it doesn’t work, it means there is a problem with your hardware combination and connection. This shall be discussed in the section below.
fix Xtraview E143-0/E143-4 Error Caused by Incorrect Hardware Installations
Now that we are through with the software/system settings causes of E143 “No communication from Primary Decoder E143-0″ OR ” waiting for communication from primary decoder error” below are a comprehensive troubleshooting guide.
Check your Signal Quality
First off and the most important, check your signal quality. check for poor connections and also verify signal strength and quality on all tuners on all decoders involved in the xtraview setup. If you can’t use your DStv decoder to do this, you can use your sat-finder. The values need to be above 80% on all tuners. To troubleshoot signal loss, read this post
Set your Diplexer Correctly if using One
Secondly, check that you are setting up your diplexer correctly if you are using one with your setup. Below is a diagram showing how to connect a diplexer to an Explora 1 assuming the Explora 1 is your primary decoder for the XV. Always remember that your diplexer must be placed at the back of the decoder.
For the sake of clarity, you can set up any diplexer in the normal way or reverse method depending on the device.
ANT (S1) – connects to the RF In or Out port (depending on the user’s needs)
I/O (PX) – connects to the LNB’s cable coming from the dish see image above.
SAT (S2) – connects to the LNB input/unicable port
ANT (S1) – connects to the RF coaxial cable you will be routing
I/O (PX) – connects to the LNB input port
SAT (S2) – connects to the LNB’s cable coming from the dish.
Make sure you get the Heartbeat Cables right if Connected directly
For example, both Explora 1 and Explora 2A can use a cable connection between them. Sadly, the new Explora 3A doesn’t come with RF IN.OUT ports. In other words, you can’t use direct heartbeat connection with 3A and any other decoder. However, if you want to use two xtraview capable decoders the old way, you need to run a heartbeat cable from the RFout of the primary decoder to the RF-IN of the secondary decoder. This doesn’t require a diplexer.
Make sure this is the case. and it is done the right way if you choose to go this route. otherwise, either use a diplexer or use SLNB with two decoders that have builtin diplexers such as Explora 2a, 3a, 5s, 5u and 6s
Check the distance between the two Decoders
If you use two DStv exploras, you have the leverage of at most 30 meters distance between the primary and secondary decoders. By contrast, if you use the older decoders or the series 4 decoders, the distance may not be up to this. you can bring the two decoders closer and see if the signal is restored if this is the case, you can try the 7-meters distance and see what happens.
Check your heartbeat cable for faults
Check all cabling coming out of the decoders if this is the case for you.
The heartbeat cable that connects older model decoders uses the RFin/RFout ports of those decoders to send the heartbeat pulse while the same kind of cables does the similar job via DStv smart LNB on newer decoders. If any or some of these cables are faulty or damaged, you will surely get the e143 error code.
The LNBin and Heartbeat ports are the same on the newer model decoders and use a method call diplexing to achieve this.
Look out for the following Anomalies on the coaxial/heartbeat cables
- Exposed inner braiding or inner copper core
- Replace the cable if it is obviously damaged
- Bad crease on bends on the cables. Make sure you replace a bent cable
- Electrical Grounding and leaks
- Lastly, check that the outer braiding does not make contact with the inner copper coated conductor as even one strand will cause a ground leak and break the continuity of the signal.
Check the Cable Joints
Inspect joined stretches of cable and make sure that they are joined properly and don’t come loose easily when you tug at it.
The 143-0/143-4 Error may also be due to the Weather
You may also have other forms of signal problems. For instance, weather changes can affect older equipment more than it does to newer ones.
T-Pieces and F-Connecters
In the case of ROUT to RFIN heartbeat connection, you may need a T-piece connector.
Similarly, you need to be certain of what passes for a properly terminated f-connector. Badly joined connectors are one of the biggest problems facing DSTV and network installations. It’s not that it’s hard to do but it does take some mindfulness and consideration.
Inspect your connectors and re-fit them if they are loose or replace them if they seem too worn out.
If you join the cables, please eliminate them with connectors and barrels. Check on all connectors especially the ones at the LNB
Make sure your Diplexer(where applicable) is not faulty
A faulty diplexer can also cause 143 error code to pop-up. To fix this, make sure you are using a good one. Also, make sure you are not using a combiner in the place of a diplexer.
Smart LNB/Smart Switches ports
Another cause of error 143-0 is faulty SLNB ports. To fix Xtraview E143-0 error, change ports on the SLNB. But, make sure all the unused ports have terminations on them. These terminators help protect the universal ports from the weather.
Note that the 5 series decoder will not function properly if connected to the universal ports ever. Therefore connect it to the unicable port.
This is a bit complicated to understand. Newer decoders have one cable that transports both satellite incoming signal and heartbeat pulse down one length of cable through the smart LNB. This can be done because they have a built-in diplexer.
What to do When your Connection and Cabling is correct
If an installer is handling this for you, call back the installer, he must do what he’s been paid for.
- Secondly, call DStv/multichoice to make sure your xtraview is indeed active.
- When you call, you need to ask them for an XtraView (XV) specialist. This may, however, take a lot of “negotiating” before they agree to arrange that callback. Therefore, you may suggest you also get the operator’s name in case the call back doesn’t get done.
When you phone call DStv, ask for an XV specialist. Then you need to explain what you are trying to do. DStv may need to completely break all links between your decoders.