Spain has a lot to offer. Sun, sea, and sangria. Great food, wonderful culture, and delicious (and cheap!) wine. But most expats will agree that one thing Spain can't offer is great TV. Sure, you might get a chuckle or two out of "Camera Cafe" if your Spanish is up to scratch. And you might be secretly interested in the newest gossip about Princess Leticia on the many "rosa" programmes that dirty up the airwaves all afternoon. But when you sit down in front of the telly with your glass of cheap-but-delicious vino tinto, you probably feel that little ache of desire for some good British television. And the only way to stop that ache is to get Sky TV in Spain. Which, surprisingly enough, is pretty easy to do.
Heard About Problems with Sky TV in Spain?
I'm sure none of this is news. You know that some people are able to get Sky TV in Spain, and that you might be able to, as well-- that's why you're here. But you've probably also heard that Sky satellite reception in Spain is fraught with problems. Sometimes the sound of Ricky Gervais's voice is inaudible underneath all the static. Channel 5 doesn't work, or is constantly breaking up. During certain times of day, the reception is non-existent.
Should you expect to run into these sorts of problems if you get Sky?
The answer is no... with just a little bit of "yes" thrown in just to make things interesting. Because the Sky satellite signal that passes across Spain is rather weak, reception is not going to be just like it was when you subscribed to Sky at home. But the truth is, most problems that users experience with their Sky TV reception in Spain can be blamed on the installation itself-- not on the signal. Many installers of Sky TV in Spain simply do not have the experience or equipment they need to perfectly align your satellite dish to the Sky television signal. Why? Because a digital reception aligner is an expensive piece of equipment, and most companies that install Sky TV in Spain can't afford one.
While many Spanish satellite dish installation companies will claim to be able to do a full installation, many of them don't have the know-how or experience to effectively tune your dish to the Sky signal. And you'll end up with some or all of the problems mentioned here. This makes choosing a reputable company with experience installing Sky TV in Spain of key importance. If you choose a Spanish company that specializes in the installation of Sky, you should be able to have clear reception --and minimal problems-- in most locations within Spain.
The Equipment for Sky TV in Spain
Because of the positioning of the Sky television satellite in its orbit around Earth, the signal moves from north to south across a portion of Europe. This allows you to easily access the Sky TV signal in Spain... that is, as long as you have the right equipment.
The most important piece of equipment for receiving satellite television anywhere is, of course, the satellite dish. But your dish takes on even more importance when looking to install Sky TV in Spain. The size and type of dish that you used in the UK to receive your Sky television signal probably won't work in Spain. You need to be prepared to buy something larger and, as a matter of course, more expensive.
The size of satellite dish you'll need to receive Sky TV in Spain differs according to where you are in the country. Funnily enough, Southern Spain is where the reception is clearest. There, you'll need a 1.2 to 1.3 metre satellite dish. In Madrid, on the other hand, you'll need a 1.8 metre (or larger) dish. And always keep in mind that a larger dish will give you better reception-- you'll get the best reception by buying the best (and biggest) satellite dish you can reasonably afford. Be sure to speak with your Sky TV installer in Spain in order to determine the appropriate sized satellite dish for your area.
There's no reason to give up on all your favourite programmes just because you're sitting under a sparkling blue Spanish sky instead of all that depressing greyness back home. You can have the best of both worlds with Sky TV in Spain... just be sure to do your research and work only with qualified companies with experience installing Sky.
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