Call it a testament to good engineering. Even though the KVH Tracvision M1 satellite system dates back to 2008, there are a surprising number of them still in use. The M1 is a standard definition satellite system for boats with its own dedicate marine-grade receiver. The receiver combines a regular DIRECTV box with the antenna control hardware needed for a marine setup.
That’s all well and good until…
Since 2008 we’ve seen two things that have made it hard for M1 owners. First of course is that the dedicated receiver isn’t made anymore. If your receiver goes down, it takes the whole system with it because you can’t add a separate antenna control unit.
The other issue of course is that DIRECTV has continued to move away from both standard-definition TV and the MPEG-2 encoding scheme that was used since 1994. That means the M1 receiver can’t receive a lot of the channels that are out there.
Although this is only a single-satellite system, it’s still capable of getting a lot of DIRECTV programming. That’s why people still like it. But, over time, all the programming on the one satellite it sees will go to the MPEG-4 method. That means they M1 receiver won’t be able to decode it.
What can you do?
If you still have a working M1 receiver, you can use it as an antenna control unit and then attach a more modern receiver to output to the TV. That’s what most folks are doing with their M1s.
If you don’t have a working receiver all you can do is try to find one yourself and hope that it works. Sometimes trolling eBay doesn’t give you the results you really want.
Or, you can call Signal Connect.
Signal Connect is the commercial and activations arm of Solid Signal. It’s a team of professionals with decades of experience in marine electronics. No one handles more satellite problems than Signal Connect. No one activates more new accounts. And, when it comes to helping people with older equipment, no one does it better.
We have solutions. We can help you figure out the best and most cost-effective way to use the equipment you have. If there’s a way to keep it all going, we know it. Nobody has helped more M1 owners keep their older systems afloat. We have complete access to the DIRECTV computer systems that support these older systems, and no one knows their way around them better than our staff.
It starts with a call to 888-233-7563. You’ll get connected to a marine expert who can help you. We don’t have a big call center… we have a corporate office in the good old USA. Our Novi, Michigan-based operation is big enough to serve you but small enough to care. When you’re connected to an expert, you’ll get their contact information so you can reach out to them directly. Try that with any other satellite TV operation!
If it’s after hours or if you just prefer the online experience, we get it! All you have to do is fill out the form below and we’ll get back to you, usually within one business day.