What you see above you is a Broadband DECA. Residential customers use it for all the fancy interactive features of DIRECTV DVRs, but commercial customers can use it too… so that the free Commercial App for iPad can control all your receivers easily without a bucket ‘o remotes. However, if you have more than 15 receivers there’s something you need to know.
The app itself communicates with the receivers using a technology called “MoCA.” MoCA lets internet information travel over the same coax cable used for video. The 1.0 version of MoCA, used by DIRECTV, allows for only 16 devices to work together, meaning you can have 15 receivers and one Broadband DECA. The Broadband DECA connects to coax and also to your wired network to let them work together. It’s like the tollbooth between the “information superhighway” and the local roads that connect your receivers.
In order to use MoCA, you must be using SWM multiswitches, but that’s not a problem since that’s the way pretty much every install in the last five years has been done. However, you can’t share Broadband DECAs between SWM multiswitches… [i]you need one Broadband DECA for every SWM.[/size] Also even though you can run up to 16 receivers off one SWM, you can’t run 16 receivers together through MoCA so that means you’ll have to plan for 15 receivers per SWM.
If you want to control more than 15 receivers, connect multiple Broadband DECAs to a cheap network switch and then to your router. Keeping the DECAs close together makes them work better in most cases.
I have heard of some people having problems with more than 24 receivers working together, and one way to make sure they do is to manually set the IP address of every receiver by going into the Menu, choosing Settings&Help, then Settings, then Internet Setup, then Advanced Setup. If you’re still having trouble, it might be worth having a tech come in to diagnose what’s actually going on.