Prime Focus Satellite Dishes on the Costa Blanca in Spain
There are two types of satellite dishes used for the reception of UK TV in Spain: Prime Focus satellite dishes and Offset satellite dishes.
The Prime Focus satellite dishes were, until February 2012, used mainly in the Valencia and Costa Blanca area for the reception of UK TV channels from BBC ITV and C4. These satellite dishes have the LNB located in the centre of the satellite dish
One of the more popular make of Prime Focus Satellite Dishes used in the Valencia and Costa Blanca area for the reception of UK TV channels is the Famaval Prime Focus Satellite Dish range.
For information, here are the official sizes for the Famaval satellite dishes.
1.4m (140cm) prime focus satellite dish
Outside diameter: 1440mm x 1440mm
Reflector diameter: 1330mm x 1330mm
1.8m (180cm) / 1.9m (190cm) satellite dish prime focus
Outside diameter: 1940mm x 1940mm
Reflector diameter: 1790mm x 1790mm
2.4m (240cm) prime focus satellite dish
Outside diameter: 2470mm x 2470mm
Reflector diameter: 2290mm x 2290mm
The 2.4m Famaval has the additional bonus of being future proof, as it is able to be extended to a 3.1m satellite dish by the use of extension panels
However, personally, I have found that in my service area the Maraffa 1.8m satellite dish performs better than the Famaval 1.8m (1.9m) satellite dish (despite the claims you read about in the local expat newspapers!)
Prime Focus Satellite Dish Size Confusions
There can be some confusion between installers supplying Prime Focus Satellite Dishes used in the Valencia and Costa Blanca area. Is a satellite dish a 1.8m satellite dishes or a 1.9m satellite dishes. The official measurements for satellite dishes are actually taken by the size of the reflector part of the dish, and should not include the outer rim of the dish. So a 1.8m satellite dish is the same as a 1.9m satellite dish. The difference is simply how you interpret the measurements.
Other Manufacturers of Prime Focus Satellite Dishes
I have tested other Prime Focus Satellite Dishes by other manufacturers, and although they have a lower cost this is reflected in their lower manufacturing quality and levels of signal received
One satellite dish manufacturer, Pasat (?) is located in Eastern Europe (Turkey or Bulgarian?), and are generally regarded as being a poor performer compared to those satellite dishes made in Portugal.
Avoid at all costs “petal” or “segment” satellite dishes – although cheap it has been reported that the Fortecstar 2.4m petal dish has the same ability as a 1.5m dish! So you may think you are getting a bargain Fortec Star satellte dish from a supplier like Maplins, but they are really not worth buying, due to their poor performance
Do I have a Portuguese or Eastern Europe (Bulgarian) Pasat satellite dish?
An Eastern European 2.4m dish is identifiable by:
a large hole in the middle. The Famaval Prime Focus Satellite Dishes do not have a centre hole.
“spin circles” on the back where you can see the dish has been made from spun steel. The Portuguese Prime Focus Satellite Dishes don’t have these as they are pressed aluminium.
5 bolts to hold the dish support ring to the ground stand, the Portuguese Prime Focus Satellite Dishes clamp onto the ground stand.
A 2.4m Famaval Prime Focus Satellite Dishes can also be distinguished from other dishes by the 24 small holes around the rim which can be used to install extension petals, making the 2.4m Famaval satellite dish a 3.1m satellite dish.
A Famaval 2.4m Prime Focus Satellite Dish (left) and a Pasat Bulgarian 2.4m Prime Focus Satellite Dish (right). Note the large hole in the centre of the Turkish dish.