IT Development Consulting

IT Development Consulting

TITC Africa is providing IT Consulting Services for Comercial and Residential Development. The TITC Team has been involved in project of various sizes, from National to residential Fibre Rollouts providing the solutions to maximise the leap forward for connectivity in Africa.

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Body Corporates and Home Owners Fibre

Body Corporates and Home Owners Fibre

TITC is providing IT Consulting Services for the Body Corporates, Home Owners Associations and Trustees. The TITC Team has been involved in various Fibre to the Home projects and is able to provide sound advise on residential as well as Suburban Fibre Rollouts.

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DSTV Signal Changes

Multichoice is in the process of upgrading their channel capacity and quality. This change that is scheduled to occur somewhere between 2016 and 2017 will require that all subscribers receive the four different polarities or quadrants down to their decoders, which will need to arrive in 4 separate coax cables. The preparation for these changes has already been done in the form of the new decoder and accessory devices, specifically the new DSTV explorer and its requirements to use the 5-in-1 or 5-in-2 switch which converts the 4 cables onto 1 cable which uses a different signalling type called Unicable or SATCR.

Please note that currently only two are required, but not heeding the recommendations by Multi-Choice may require additional re-installation within the next year or two.

The four quadrants or polarities are:

  • Vertical High ( Y axis + )
  • Vertical Low ( Y axis – )
  • Horizontal High ( X axis + )
  • Horizontal Low ( X axis – )

Multi-unit Dwelling Requirements

Head of Multi-Choice Field services has issued a letter to all installers to with guidelines/requirements for installations:

Multi-Choice Letter


Most installations of DSTV will not meet the requirements going forward, even for single home installations. We have a table below to provide guidelines on when upgrades will be required:

Installation type LNB Cable Switch Remark
Any single non-PVR decoder Single One Current installations need no modification
Two non-PVR decoders on XtraView Twin Two For new installations, a quad LNB is recommended for future-proofing
A dual view decoder Twin Two For new installations, a quad LNB is recommended for future-proofing
An SD PVR Twin Two For new installations, a quad LNB is recommended for future-proofing
Any XtraView combination containing an SD PVR Quad Four ? Depending on the inputs required, a multiswitch may be needed
A 4-tuner HD PVR (model 850 or 4660) Quad Four A SatCR LNB or DStv switch may be used to reduce the number of cables required
A 2-tuner HD PVR (model 2P or 2U) Quad Four A twin LNB could be used, but a quad is recommended for future-proofing
Any XtraView combination contained an HD PVR Quad Four ? Depending on the inputs required, a multiswitch may be needed. A DStv switch could be used to reduce the cabling (place the switch close to the dish or inside the roof and use the Unicable outputs through the conduit to the HD PVRs)
An Explora Quad One DStv Connect 4 cables to the DStv switch and one cable from the switch to the Explora
Any XtraView combination containing an Explore Quad One DStv Connect 4 cables to the DStv switch and then use the relevant outputs from the switch to the decoders

Common challenges with cabling

Often we find that buildings face challenges with their cable paths, simply because of a lack of channels or PVC conduiting. The new requirements for DSTV cabling further complicates this because of the 4 cable coax cable requirement, necessitating the adoption of fibre and related methods of bringing services to each apartment/residence.

Installation Methodologies

Below is a basic graphic of the issue. Fitting 4 cables into a 25mm conduit is possible, but bends or corners makes installation more difficult. Often cables get snagged and stuck, as such filling conduit to capacity is not advised.

Coax Vs Fibre


Fiber can be pulled off a reel and cut onsite to length requiring the services of a third party fiber splicing company. Alternatively it can be pre-made prior to installation, after measurements have been taken. In our experience, pre-made cables generally have less loss on them, and the installation ends requiring less downtime in a building or environment where services are already running. This is only possible if the ducting or conduit is conducive to pulling cable with a pre-terminated end through, and certain 90’ bends may prevent the connector from going through.

Fibre Equipment

Fibre is the new next generation means of transmitting data, voice and multimedia. DSTV or satellite TV in general also benefits from the use of this technology using a standard called Passive Optical Networking. This means that no active equipment is required to redistribute the signal, meaning less maintenance and near zero power consumption.

Recommended DSTV Passive Optical Distribution Hardware
Fiber LNB


Fiber Optical 32-way Splitter


DSTV Antenna Wall Converter Box dSCR



Optical Strengths

Fiber installations deal with optical strengths which is measured in Decibels. The ratings start a positive 8 (+8) and then go to negative 50 (-50). However once your signal strength degrades past -15, it is already un-useable and signals near this reading should be double checked, considering insertion losses, cable or other connector losses or un-due tension etc.

Fiber information

The fiber light wave is based on 1310 Nano meters, and uses FC/PC type connectors.

Dish Sizing Considerations

Current recommendations for Multi-Choice satellite dish sizes are a minimum size of 60CM for standard definition installations and 90CM or bigger for High Definition installations.

For Multi-dwelling units, the larger 1.2M dishes are recommended, but not required. The signal that the satellite emits is strongest in the middle of South Africa, with a slightly weaker signal for Cape Town and western parts of South Africa.

A bigger dish achieves a bigger signal gain, as well as being a more focused receiver. This is mostly required to avoid interference and to avoid bad weather signal degradation however all dishes are prone to weather.


Typical 100+ Apartment cabling diagram

TITC SA-DSTV over Fibre - Apartment Rollout

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