NICE AND EASY: DIRECTV and DISH on the same wire?

A few weeks ago I was contacted by one of our support staff. There was a customer on the line who operated an RV park and wanted to know,

I want to offer my guests a choice of DIRECTV or DISH. How can I put both on the same cable so they can just choose the one they want?

Easy answer: you can’t. DIRECTV and DISH share the same frequencies so you can’t put both on the same cable. Neither would work. If the RV park wanted to put either satellite or TV antenna on the same cable, there are some options (although it’s still hard.) But two different satellite services aren’t going to live on the same cable, period.

It does bring up some other questions, though:

Can an RV park even do that?

As a private person, you can’t share DIRECTV service with anyone, and you can’t charge for it. However owners of campgrounds and other hospitality services like that can do so, as long as they follow certain rules and the account is set up right. If you’re an RV park owner who’s interested in something like this, give us a call at 888-233-7563.

Can you even have DIRECTV and DISH in the same building?

You sure can. Not only is there no rule against it but it happens a lot, especially in situations where there are channels that aren’t carried on both. A sports bar whose customers really want to see the PAC-12 channel but still want Sunday Ticket will have two different providers. It’s expensive, but it happens all the time.

Bar and restaurant owners use matrix switchers to distribute programming from many different sources to many different televisions. If you’d like to know more, that’s right the number is 888-233-7563.

Is there any solution that would work for a single wire in this case?

Absolutely. It’s called a headend and it’s like a cable TV setup just for you and your customers. You connect the DIRECTV and DISH receivers, plus over-the-air antenna if you want, into a setup that puts the channels you want onto one wire. The downside is that the number of channels is limited to the number of receivers you have, but then you can easily distribute TV over a single wire and anyone with a fairly modern TV (last 15 years) can get it. You’ve probably seen setups like this in hotels before where there are 15-20 channels. If you want to put in a headend, you guessed it 888-233-7563.

Your commercial TV solution

No matter what you’re looking for, Solid Signal can help. We’re experts in helping businesses provide the entertainment options they want, and heck… I’m not even going to give you the number again.

I lied, 888-233-7563


About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.