While RVers often head into the outdoors to take a break from life, many don’t want to cut themself off from modern-day entertainment. That is why for countless owners of recreational vehicles, having a solid portable satellite dish onboard is of utmost importance.
By keeping a high-quality dish around, you should be able to enjoy your favorite TV shows after a long day behind the wheel which definitely increases your comfort level. However, as the market packs numerous models, getting the best portable satellite dish for RV is hard if you don’t know what to expect.
- Best Portable Satellite Dishes For Your RV: Pros And Cons
- 1. KING VQ4500 Tailgater – Best Of The Best
- 2. Winegard GM-6035 Carryout G2+ – Editor’s Choice
- 3. Winegard PL-7000R DISH Playmaker – Editor’s Choice
- 4. Winegard SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline
- 5. Satellite Oasis DIRECTV SWM SL3S
- 6. Winegard PA-1000 DISH Playmaker
- 7. Winegard PA6002R Pathway X2
- 8. Winegard RT2035T Roadtrip T4
- 9. Winegard SK-1000
- 10. Winegard PA2000R Pathway X1
- 11. KING VQ4900 DISH Tailgater Pro
- How to Choose the Best Portable Satellite Dish For Your Rig
- FAQs about Portable Satellite Dishes For RV
- Useful Tips for Setting Up Portable Satellite Dishes
Best Portable Satellite Dishes For Your RV: Pros And Cons
The TV sets on your rig have less than stable connections so you intend to grab a portable satellite dish to boost the signal receptions? If that is your plan then you would find the reviews presented down below useful. They analyze the features and operations of first-rate models that show up in various discussions regarding ideal dishes for recreational vehicles, check them out to make a worthwhile investment.
1. KING VQ4500 Tailgater – Best Of The Best
- Powered via coax
- Dual signal output
- Automatic acquisition
Why This Is The Best
Designed for outdoor enthusiasts, KING VQ4500 Tailgater could guarantee constant access to daily news, big games, weather forecasts and so on regardless of the locations. Since the KING antenna offers automatic satellite acquisition, the setup process is going to be a walk in the park.
In addition to that, at just 8 pounds, VQ4500 Tailgater is considered to be the best portable satellite dish for RV in terms of handling nowadays. That means you would be able to move KING VQ4500 Tailgater from spot to spot at will, a major plus.
Accompanied by the pay-as-you-go plan from DISH, the model of King gives you full control of your viewing experience on the road. Using the DISH plan, you don’t have to sign lengthy contracts, pay multiple fees, … to watch TVs while traveling. DISH only bills you for the months you use the service so it’s possible to cancel at the end of the season without penalty. If you have DISH at home, it’s widely advised that you add the satellite receiver on your rig to your account for one bill.
Like other satellite antennas made for recreational vehicles, KING VQ4500 Tailgater supports multiple TV viewing. But to get VQ4500 Tailgater to accommodate many sets at the same time, RVers must purchase more than one receiver.
AWESOME!! I was so tired of setting up my tripod dish and then putting everything away while camping. So I decided to get the King Quest to make my set ups a breeze. With this dish I receive all of my programming including my local channels. Set up is a breeze now. Just put the Portable dish outside with a view to the satellites, turn everything on and BAM! you will have TV within a few minutes. Granted I have lost HD programming, but while in my RV I can live with it. It is not the manufactures of these dishes fault for the loss of HD, but it it the way DirecTV delivers their signal. If you must have HD with DirectTV you must purchase a Winegard Traveler which will cost more then a grand more then this dish and it will have to be permanently mounted on the roof of your RV. There are a lot of trees were I camp, and being limited to a permanently mounted dish was something I was not willing to do. You can use this model with dish network, but you will need to by the King UC1000 universal controller for less then a hundred dollars.Shared by EricNSTL
- Fast setup
- Clear and precise manual
- Reliable and dependable
- Inconsistent performance
- For stationary use
2. Winegard GM-6035 Carryout G2+ – Editor’s Choice
- Aluminum reflector
- Glass infused base
- Integrated satellite tuner
Why It’s An Editor’s Choice
Boasting a rugged construction, Winegard GM-6035 Carryout G2+ could take a lot of abuse which makes it a fine model for off-roading on RV. Featuring a power inserter for cable coax entry, GM-6035 Carryout G2+ facilities installation as well as operations in usual setups. As the antenna of Winegard acquires satellites automatically, it delivers signals moments after being installed. Furthermore, because of the automatic satellite acquisition, Winegard GM-6035 Carryout G2+ reorients all by itself as you move between locations so manual aiming is unneeded.
About the provider, the Winegard model works with DIRECTV (Standard Definition), DISH (Standard & HD Definition) and BellTV (Standard & HD Definition). Hence, GM-6035 Carryout G2+ tends to be called the best portable satellite dish for RV available for purchase regarding versatility. By keeping Winegard GM-6035 Carryout G2+ in your rig, you should be able to watch every TV program you like. Though the price of the antenna from Winegard seems to be a bit steep, its robust performance justifies the cost.
As for post-purchase support, Winegard provides users of GM-6035 Carryout G2+ with an excellent warranty: 2-year parts, 1-year labor. If you have issues, you could contact Winegard for technical assistance through phone and email.
This satellite dish worked as advertised. It is a breeze to set up, and once the receiver is activated, the reception of Direct TV came in very strong. The signal it got was very strong. This unit worked well in a strong thunderstorm when the RV was shaking with the wind. Remember, this unit only receives standard definition, but in our RV, with a 26″ TV, the picture is very good. Also bear in mind, you need the older Direct TV receiver, for the standard definition. Do not buy an old standard def receiver from anyone, it might not be deactivated.Shared by J. E. Hedquist
- Well-built and compact
- Lots of mounting options
- Outstanding versatility
- A couple of users complain about connectivity troubles
- HD definition is inaccessible on DIRECTV
3. Winegard PL-7000R DISH Playmaker – Editor’s Choice
- Sleek design
- Aluminum alloy reflector
- Single coax connection
Why It’s An Editor’s Choice
Coming at an affordable price, Winegard PL-7000R DISH Playmaker truly proves to be a splendid RV-oriented satellite antenna for most budget-minded RVers. Thanks to the integration of high-strength military-grade aluminum alloy reflector, the signal strength of the Winegard model is superior to the average antennas Thus, it’s going to be a breeze for you to follow your favorite TV shows as you move around. Additionally, the lightweight and sleek body of PL-7000R DISH Playmaker would let people put it to good use in a wide range of settings.
Capable of finding the locations of satellites in orbit essentially on its own, the dish of Winegard presents smooth, uninterrupted viewing experience throughout the trips. About payment, PL-7000R DISH Playmaker comes alongside the pay-as-you-go plan of DISH that removes the need to sign long-term contracts. In terms of installation, you could set up Winegard PL-7000R DISH Playmaker in virtually whatever way you see fit. You plan to put the Winegard antenna on the roof? Then it’s strongly recommended that you grab the roof mount kit from Winegard too.
Since it packs a UV-protected plastic dome, Winegard PL-7000R DISH Playmaker holds together well under the scorching sun. Therefore, the Winegard satellite antenna is undoubtedly the best portable satellite dish for RV on the market for summer travels.
We went from an auto satellite finder on the roof of our RV to this one, and we prefer it. It can be placed away from trees to get a signal, and it usually does find it. We use it with a Dish Wally, and the only downside is how it finds satellites is a mystery, it either finds them or it doesn’t, there’s no way to see what kind of satellite signal is coming in like we used to do on our other dish DVR’s; either we get TV or we don’t, and we’re not sure which direction to move it for a stronger signal. Perhaps we have more to learn. Despite being very lightweight its shape makes it withstand high winds (I don’t guarantee that, it’s just our experience). Also it sheds water nicely; previous dome Dishes wouldn’t work in the rain. We put it on 4 plastic leveler blocks to keep it out of dirt/mud/puddles. It has a loop to put a cable through, and we always keep it locked up. Make sure to get as long of a cable as you can find, since you may have to put it away from your rig to get a signal and still have it locked.Shared by Love2bike
- Affordable price
- Marvelous payment plan
- Straightforward installation
- Some dishes arrive damaged
- Quality control should be overhauled
4. Winegard SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline
- Fully automatic
- Simultaneous signal reception
- Supports all new DIRECTV HD receivers
Why We Love It
Desire a home viewing experience and have money to spend? In that case, you should take a closer look at Winegard SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline. Unlike typical models, the expensive satellite antenna of Winegard possesses a broad reception (99, 101 and 103 degrees). As a result, SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline could connect with multiple satellites at once so RVer may enjoy all programs on all TV sets simultaneously. Also, Winegard SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline accommodates up to a maximum of 4 TVs, more than enough for classic family travels.
Utilizing reflectors designed for household uses, SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline is second to none once it comes to signal strength. Numerous RV satellite dish reviews praise the ability of the Winegard model to maintain consistent signals for TVs even if it’s facing rain fades.
Aside from that, Winegard SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline works well along with DVRs so recording programs from various satellites is a walk in the park. Considering everything, Winegard SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline is the best portable satellite dish for RV in the category of performance.
At slightly more than 50 pounds, Winegard SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline is on the heavy side compared to standard antennas for recreational vehicles so be careful. If you lack confidence in your skills then it would be wise to just leave the installation for an expert.
- Superb durability
- Solid signal strengths
- Offer multiple programs to multiple TVs
- Quite expensive
5. Satellite Oasis DIRECTV SWM SL3S
- Carrying case
- Tripod, coax, compass, … included
- Power inserter
Why We Love It
Adaptable and low-priced, Satellite Oasis DIRECTV SWM SL3S comes with everything RVers to secure signals for TV sets. Containing a 50-feet coax cable, the kit of Satellite Oasis gives users lots of flexibility in setting up the antenna.
Besides that, the accompanying tripod permits RVers to stabilize the antenna for fine-tuning, a pivotal process as DIRECTV SWM SL3S requires manual aiming. To help you get your bearing, Satellite Oasis DIRECTV SWM SL3S also provides a rugged compass with metal housing.
Since DIRECTV SWM SL3S features one output for one receiver, it’s restricted to one TV at a time. Still, if you like to add more receivers for multiple viewing, you could get a SWiM splitter from Satellite Oasis.
Keep in mind that SD receivers only receive SD programs. To show RVers how things work, the manufacturer included a booklet that contains informative instructions. Follow the instructions and you would be able to get Satellite Oasis DIRECTV SWM SL3S up and running in the blink of an eye.
As for size, Satellite Oasis DIRECTV SWM SL3S is bulky which creates certain troubles. However, if you look for a basic but practical satellite antenna for your rig, the Satellite Oasis is your best portable satellite dish for RV.
- Top-notch adaptability
- Nice values for the price
- User-friendly instructions
- Must be aimed manually
- Customer service is less than ideal
6. Winegard PA-1000 DISH Playmaker
- Single coax connector
- Ergonomic grip handle
- Optional mount
Why We Love It
For camping, tailgating, boondocking and similar outdoor activities, PA-1000 DISH Playmaker of Winegard is the preferred choice of a variety of RVers around the globe. Being fully automatic, the Winegard antenna could be set up in minutes so you don’t have to wait long to watch your beloved programs. The setup consists of three steps: connect Playmaker to the receiver, connect the receiver to the TV and power them up to complete the process. In general, Playmaker is the best portable satellite dish for RV regarding ease of installation.
In use, the simple but rugged handle of Winegard PA-1000 DISH Playmaker lets you move the antenna as you like. The handle would double as a secured spot to attach to locking systems if you often leave the antenna unattended and want to deter thefts. About signal strength, due to the integration of military-grade aluminum reflector, the reception of the Winegard antenna remains consistent despite changes in the surroundings. Featuring the pay-as-you-go plan from DISH, Playmaker allows RV to take care of the TV bills conveniently.
Because it’s available at a relatively affordable price, Winegard PA-1000 DISH Playmaker matches the wallet of most ordinary RVers these kinds of days. If you need good all-round antennas that come at fair prices, Playmaker is the best RV satellite system for you.
- Excellent handling
- Automatic acquisition
- Lightweight construction
- A bit noisy during self-adjustments
- Many users report issues with software
7. Winegard PA6002R Pathway X2
- Dual Arc technology
- Two coax inputs
- Security molded eyelet
Why We Love It
Utilizing the state-of-the-art Dual Arc technology, Winegard PA6002R Pathway X2 could receive signals from satellites on both Western and Eastern arcs. Because of that, the Winegard dish is well-liked by full-time RVers that travel extensively and want consistent receptions. In addition, the large-sized reflector of PA6002R Pathway X2 guarantees outstanding signal strengths. With Winegard PA6002R Pathway X2, it’s possible for you to follow SD/HD programs of DISH throughout the US in all weather conditions.
With up to two coax inputs, the antenna of Winegard may pair with two satellite receivers for two TV sets. Being powered through the coax, Winegard PA6002R Pathway X2 saves people that headache of setting up extra power lines. Once installed, PA6002R Pathway X2 would automatically orient itself to acquire satellites so don’t bother aiming it manually. Remember that to activate the receiver, you need a DISH account but if you don’t have one, you could always sign up for the pay-as-you-go plan.
In terms of handling, PA6002R Pathway X2 of Winegard packs a grip carry handle that lets you get a good hold of the antenna. Moreover, thanks to the security eyelet molded into the base, the Winegard model could be locked up securely at will. That is why Winegard PA6002R Pathway X2 is the best portable satellite dish for RV if security is concerned.
- Undemanding setup
- Consistent performance
- Nice packagings
- High cost
- Bulky and unwieldy
8. Winegard RT2035T Roadtrip T4
- One button on/off operation
- In-motion tracking
- UV-protected dome
Why We Love It
As a fully automatic antenna with in-motion tracking, Winegard RT2035T Roadtrip T4 is highly sought after by RVers that wish to follow live programs while on the move. Upon installation, Roadtrip T4 would let you watch various shows DISH, DIRECTV and BellTV as you travel down the highways. Using a high gloss rounded dome, the antenna Winegard is considered to be unmatched in its price range if it comes to signal strength. The dome of Winegard RT2035T Roadtrip T4 is also UV-protected, hence, it handles UV rays from the sun well.
With its straightforward, no-nonsense one button on/off operation, Roadtrip T4 performs admirably in a wide range of applications. Able to lock up to satellites virtually everywhere, the model of Winegard delivers unlimited TV viewing with no data overages, buffering and so on. Since it uses an updated design, Winegard RT2035T Roadtrip T4 makes negligible noises in use. As a result, for outdoor enthusiasts that desire peace of mind while watching TV, Roadtrip T4 is the best satellite for RV on the market.
About receiver capability, Winegard RT2035T Roadtrip T4 could work with a maximum of two receivers for two TV sets.
- Fast shipping
- Acquire satellites automatically
- Pretty costly
- Several users report periodic signal losses
9. Winegard SK-1000
- Multi-satellite viewing
- Household reflectors
Why We Love It
So you like Winegard SK-SWM3 DIRECTV Slimline but need an antenna designed for DISH? Well, in that case, Winegard SK-1000 would suit you nicely. Made to connect with up to three satellites simultaneously, SK-1000 ensures that you would never miss your favorite shows. Furthermore, as it’s capable of accommodating three separate receivers, the Winegard antenna could support three TVs at the same time. That is certainly sufficient for the average families of RVer.
Similar to SK-SWM3, SK-1000 features automatic satellite acquisition which means it orient by itself. Therefore, after you power up Winegard SK-1000 you could focus on setting up your TVs instead of aiming the antenna. Keep in mind that SK-1000 is a model for stationary uses only so your rig must come to a stop first for it to work. Besides that particular issue, the model of Winegard proves itself to be a robust portable satellite dish for RV that could be put to good use in lots of settings.
So as to reassure the users about the quality of SK-1000, Winegard back it with a solid warranty: 2 years for parts and 1 year for labors. If you want peace of mind, Winegard SK-1000 is going to be a fine option.
- Intuitive setup
- Well-built and rugged
- Marvelous reliability
- Comes at a high price
- A few RVers complain about receiving old stocks.
10. Winegard PA2000R Pathway X1
- 100% automatic and self-installed
- Resist vibration and shock
- Powered through the receiver
Why We Love It
Comprehensively tested to stay operational after more than 600,000 miles, Winegard PA2000R Pathway X1 is by all accounts an excellent investment in the long term. Being completely automatic and self-installed, PA2000R Pathway X1 only requires a couple of moments to set up properly. By integrating aluminum reflector into the design, the antenna of Winegard offers strong and constant signals in multiple weather conditions. Also, Winegard PA2000R Pathway X1 possesses a premium stepper motor that accelerates satellite acquisition.
As the Winegard model is powered through coax, a new power arrangement is essentially unneeded. Due to the lightweight and compact body, PA2000R Pathway X1 packs superb handling characteristics. Storage is a breeze as well since Winegard PA2000R Pathway X1 occupies insignificant spaces. In terms of payment, the antenna of Winegard allows you to add your DISH account from home so you don’t have to pay separately. For those that don’t have an account, DISH offers the pay-as-you-go plan that involves paying monthly.
You could set up PA2000R Pathway X1 in whatever way you see fit but if you prefer dedicated installations, it’s wise to pick up optional mounts from Winegard.
- The price is reasonable
- Various mounting options
- Undemanding operations
- A couple of antennas seem used on arrival
- Signal loss is a notable issue
11. KING VQ4900 DISH Tailgater Pro
- Internal indicator lights
- Supports multiple TV viewing
Why We Love It
Boasting an industrial design with top-of-the-line materials, KING VQ4900 DISH Tailgater Pro is a resilient model that could withstand extreme heats/colds. As a result, for RVers that desire a tough, long-lasting satellite antenna, Tailgater Pro would be an outstanding purchase. With automatic satellite acquisition and switching, the KING antenna is able to provide the users with a smooth viewing experience. Since KING VQ4900 DISH Tailgater Pro is highly portable, setting it up should be just a walk in the park.
Due to the incorporation of the dual coax output, Tailgater Pro may accommodate up to two satellite receivers at once. That means it’s possible for the KING antenna to support two TV sets simultaneously. That being said, KING VQ4900 DISH Tailgater Pro only connects with one satellite at a time which is why your TVs would be restricted to programs on the same satellite. As for definition, the KING model could get both HD and SD programs on DISH.
Regarding the price, KING VQ4900 DISH Tailgater Pro costs a bit more than the average models on the market nowadays. Still, considering its splendid values, the KING antenna is a good buy for RV travels.
- Stable signal reception
- Installation is a cakewalk
- Mediocre technical supports
- Less than ideal shipping service
How to Choose the Best Portable Satellite Dish For Your Rig
Generally speaking, preferences change markedly from person to person so RVers tend to be at odds once it comes to the best portable satellite dish for RV available for purchase. That being said, if you wish to pick up a decent model, you must keep in mind the following criteria.
To put it plainly, the more service providers your dish could connect with in the outdoors, the more programs you could watch on your TVs. Thus, during evaluations of models on the market, it’s essential that you take a look at the service provider. For your information, versatile satellite dishes these kinds of days may access programs of up to three providers but they also come at high prices. So to buy a dish that matches your viewing tastes, you should think about programs you like to watch and the providers that air them.
Overall, portable satellite dishes for RV that pack in-motion tracking allow RVers to follow live programs while the vehicle is moving down the highways. That is by all accounts a major plus for extended trips with multiple people onboard. As the passengers watch TVs peacefully instead of causing commotions, the drivers would be able to focus on the road. Of course, models that support in-motion tracking cost more than traditional ones but lots of RVers still feel willing to spend the extra money. Altogether, for an enjoyable time in front of the TVs, in-motion tracking is key.
Number Of TV Sets
In the case you have more than one TV in your rig, you need a dish that could handle many sets at the same time. Fortunately, for the average market models, splitting signals between TV sets is just a cakewalk. Nonetheless, to be on the safe side, it’s strongly recommended that you go through customer opinions to assess the performance of specific satellite dishes. In certain models, the quality of images takes big drops as the number of TVs increases, hence, it’s a good idea to choose a capable dish for your rig.
Normally, RV-oriented portable satellite dishes don’t exactly create too much noise in use but some models unquestionably outperform others in terms of quietness. Since it’s going to be tough to fully enjoy your beloved shows next to a dish that creaks occasionally, you should make quiet operation one of your top priorities. By inspecting the design of the satellite dishes, you would likely get a general idea about the noise they produce. Always pay attention to details if you want the best portable satellite dish for RV.
Ease Of Installation
Obviously, you could hire professionals from workshops to set up the satellite dish from A to Z in your stead.That being said, it’s worth noting that as an RVers, you likely have a variety of expenses to take care of so you must cut optional spendings if possible. Therefore, you ought to grab a straightforward, no-nonsense portable satellite dish for RV that lets you install it by yourself and save some bucks. In addition to that, a model that features an undemanding setup often facilitates checkups, adjustments and so on which saves lots of time and effort.
FAQs about Portable Satellite Dishes For RV
- So how much should I spend on a satellite dish?
The market offers fair models for a wide range of budgets from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. Though price is partially linked to performance, you don’t have to strain your finance just to get premium dishes. By looking around, you would be able to locate a couple of decent models that come at relatively affordable prices. Still, it’s best to steer clear of dirt-cheap satellite dishes as they tend to have substandard build qualities. All in all, take your needs into account, narrow the models to check then proceed to calculate a proper budget.
- Do I need to keep an eye out for particular brands of portable satellite dishes?
Plenty of companies manufacture satellite dishes for recreational vehicles nowadays but once it comes to prominence, Winegard and KING definitely stand out from the rest. Using innovative designs and advanced technologies, Winegard is held in high esteem by a lot of RVers around the globe. As for KING, by offering well-made portable satellite dishes that everyone could install in a blink of an eye, it earns numerous praises from RVers, novices and veterans alike. Altogether, if you prefer to play it safe, get your dish from Winegard and KING.
- Is it a good idea to purchase satellite dishes for recreational vehicles through online retailers?
Due to the growth of e-commerce, it’s possible to buy an assortment of goods solely through the Internet. In the case you don’t have a chance to visit physical shops for certain reasons, feel free to order your dish using online retailers. Actually, as models may be distributed by several retailers simultaneously, you could even get your desired portable satellite dish at a lower price than anticipated. But to avoid troubles down the line, prioritize reputable retailers like Amazon, eBay, Camping World,…
- Would trees decrease the signal range of portable satellite dishes?
Vegetations partially influence the signal strength of satellite dishes so it’s essential that before heading out, you need to carefully map suitable camping spots. Usually, trees that have full leaves should be the ones that obstruct signals the most.
- Is there a connection between the size of the satellite dish and the signal strength?
Technically, as the size of the satellite dish increases, the strength of the signal rises. Nonetheless, in the typical RV settings, it’s of extreme importance to keep things, including the satellite dish, compact and lightweight for ease of handling. Besides, as the dish satellite approaches the equator, the signal strength often receives notable boosts.
Useful Tips for Setting Up Portable Satellite Dishes
Different models possess different setup requirements but you should be able to get your satellite dish up and running by following the hints down below.
- Always Stick To The Manual: Many RVers like to go by instinct while installing satellite dishes and only turn to the owner’s manual ounce things have already gone south. Don’t want to accidentally wreck your new fancy dish? Then it’s strongly recommended that you read through the manual that accompanies your satellite dish before setting it up. The manufacturer includes the owner’s manual to show you key information about the dish, including the installation process, therefore, it’s wise to read it from start to finish.
- Stuck In A Tough Spot? Look For Some Visual Presentations: Though manufacturers of satellite dishes definitely mean well by putting together the owner’s manual, the included instructions prove too confusing to follow on occasions. In such cases, direct and to the point visual presentations would undoubtedly come in handy. Knowing that, quite a few manufacturers have prepared factual videos that contain step-by-step directions on the installation process. So search around on the Internet to see if you could find clips that show what needs to be done.
- Contact The Manufacturer If Required: During the setup, if you fail to work out an issue, it’s widely advised that you call the manufacturer so as to get answers. The market is highly competitive which is why to survive, the manufacturers must do everything to keep the customers happy. As a result, don’t hesitate to contact the manufacturer of your dish if necessary.
You can also find other in-depth reviews and buyer’s guides on best RV backup camera, best Wifi boosters for RV, best RV tire pressure monitoring system in RV Electronics category where we provide you the handpicked list of top-rated products on the market with specific reviews, pros and cons to help you easily choose the best products for your needs and preference.
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