Understanding DStv Extra View: A Comprehensive Guide

As a tech enthusiast and an expert in home entertainment setups, I’ve delved deep into the world of satellite TV to bring you a thorough understanding of DStv Extra View. This innovative feature from MultiChoice’s digital satellite TV service, DStv, is a game-changer for households looking to maximize their viewing experience. In this first part of our comprehensive guide, we’ll cover the basics of Extra View, including what it is, the costs involved, and the types of decoders compatible with this setup. For an in-depth exploration of extending the DStv Extra View service to remote areas, such as a flatlet on a small holding, be sure to read our detailed article on maximizing the reach of DStv Extra View.

What is DStv Extra View?

DStv Extra View is an economical and convenient solution for households where different family members wish to watch separate channels simultaneously. Imagine this: you’re keen on catching the latest sports match, but at the same time, another family member wants to dive into a drama series. With Extra View, such conflicts over the TV remote are a thing of the past. This feature allows you to link multiple decoders under one DStv subscription, enabling different channels to be viewed on separate screens.

2024 DStv Extra View Pricing

The pricing for DStv Extra View in 2024 is straightforward. In addition to your regular DStv subscription fee, there’s a monthly access fee of R105 for each additional decoder included in your Extra View setup. This fee is a small price to pay for the convenience and flexibility it offers.

Decoders Compatible with Extra View

For those wondering about the types of decoders suitable for Extra View, here’s the breakdown:

  • Explora Decoders: All versions of the Explora decoder are compatible with Extra View.
  • HD Decoders: Newer models of HD decoders (5s and 6s) work seamlessly with Extra View.
  • SD Decoders: Older models, including standard definition (SD) decoders, may present compatibility issues.

Cost of Installing Extra View

The cost of installation can vary based on the complexity of your DStv setup. On average, installation prices range between R350 and R400, assuming you have all the necessary accessories. Factors influencing this cost include the type and number of decoders and the need for additional equipment like splitters, especially in mixed-model setups.

How Does Extra View Work?

The magic of Extra View lies in its ability to link secondary decoders to a primary decoder under a single subscription. Here’s a simplified explanation:

  1. Primary and Secondary Decoders: Your primary decoder holds the DStv subscription. Secondary decoders, connected to the primary, get access to the same subscription.
  2. Heartbeat Signal: The primary decoder sends a ‘heartbeat’ signal to secondary decoders every 90 seconds, ensuring continuous communication.
  3. Limitations: A maximum of two secondary decoders can be linked to one primary decoder.

Installation Basics

If you’re tech-savvy, installing DStv Extra View can be a DIY project. However, for those less confident in their technical skills, it’s advisable to seek professional installation services. Remember, a correct installation is crucial for smooth functioning.

Summary Table: Key Aspects of DStv Extra View

Feature Description
What is it? A feature allowing multiple decoders under one subscription
2024 Price Regular subscription fee + R105/month for each extra decoder
Compatible Decoders Explora, HD (new models), SD (older models may have issues)
Installation Cost Ranges between R350 – R400, varies with setup complexity
Functionality Links up to 2 secondary decoders to a primary decoder
Heartbeat Signal Ensures communication between primary and secondary decoders

Dive into DStv Extra View Installation

Continuing our exploration into DStv Extra View, this section will focus on the installation process, including the types of LNBs suitable for this setup and the intricacies of cable connections. Understanding these aspects is crucial for a seamless Extra View experience.

Types of LNBs for Extra View

The Low-Noise Block downconverter (LNB) is a critical component in satellite TV reception. For Extra View, the type of LNB you use depends on your decoder models:

  • Smart LNB: Ideal for the latest decoders (Explora One, Two, Three, and HD decoders 6s or 5s). It simplifies the installation process by reducing cabling needs.
  • Universal Twin LNB: Suitable for older decoder models. A DStv smart switch may be necessary for these setups.

Remember, an 80cm dish is recommended for optimal signal reception, regardless of the LNB type.

Connecting DStv Extra View Cables

Proper cable connection is essential for Extra View. Here’s a simplified guide:

  1. Coaxial Cable Connection: Connect each decoder to the LNB using a coaxial cable.
    • For recent models: Use the uni-cable ports on the smart LNB.
    • For older models: Use the universal port.
  2. Heartbeat Cable: In setups with a universal twin LNB, connect a communication cable from the RF port of the primary decoder to the secondary decoders to transmit the heartbeat signal.
  3. No Cable for Smart LNB: If you’re using a smart LNB, there’s no need for a separate heartbeat cable, as the signal is transmitted through the LNB.

The Heartbeat Connection

Understanding the heartbeat connection is key:

  • Frequency: The main decoder transmits a periodic signal, commonly known as a ‘heartbeat’, at intervals of two to three minutes.
  • Purpose: This signal confirms the connection between the primary and secondary decoders.
  • Error Messages: If the secondary decoder doesn’t receive this signal, it will display an E143 error, indicating communication issues.

Activating DStv Extra View

Once installation is complete, activation is the final step. Before proceeding, ensure all decoders are playing channel 100 and receiving the heartbeat signal. Then, you can contact MultiChoice to activate Extra View.

How to Check Extra View Status

To monitor the status of your Extra View setup:

  1. Press the “Help” button on your remote control.
  2. Navigate to “General Information” and then to “Extra View.”

If you encounter any technical difficulties, professional assistance is recommended.

Troubleshooting Common Extra View Issues

  1. E143 Error Message: This suggests a disruption in the reception of the heartbeat signal, typically caused by either a malfunctioning communication cable or improper settings on the decoder.
  2. Signal Interruptions: If you’re using Explora decoders and experience intermittent signal loss, check the userband settings in the decoder’s menu. Incorrect userband numbers can cause signal clashes.

Summary Table: Installation and Activation

Aspect Details
LNB Types Smart LNB for new decoders, Universal Twin LNB for older models
Cable Connection Coaxial cables to LNB, heartbeat cable for universal twin LNB setups
Activation Process Ensure proper setup, then contact MultiChoice for activation
Status Check Use the “Help” button on the remote to access Extra View information
Troubleshooting Address E143 errors and signal interruptions as needed

Frequently Asked Questions

In this final segment of our guide, we’ll address some of the most common queries related to DStv Extra View. This section aims to clarify any remaining doubts and ensure you have a complete understanding of how to optimize your DStv viewing experience using Extra View.

Can I Connect Three DStv Decoders in XtraView?

Yes, it is possible to connect up to three DStv decoders in an XtraView setup. Typically, this includes any combination of Explora and HD decoders. This setup, known as “Triple View,” allows for even more viewing flexibility in larger households.

What if My Explora Decoders Lose Picture Intermittently?

If your Explora decoders in an Extra View setup are losing signal intermittently, it’s likely due to incorrect userband settings in the decoder’s menu. Each decoder should be configured to use different userbands on the LNB. Correcting these settings should resolve the issue.

Why Am I Seeing an E143 Error Message?

The E143 error message indicates that your secondary decoder is not receiving the heartbeat signal from the primary decoder. This issue may arise from several factors, such as a defective communication cable or inaccurately configured settings on the decoder. Make certain that the main decoder is active and that the heartbeat cable is properly connected to both decoders.

What Happens If the Primary Decoder Is Off?

It’s essential to keep the primary decoder on at all times for the Extra View setup to function correctly. If the primary decoder is turned off, the secondary decoders will display an error message indicating a lack of communication from the primary decoder.

Summary Table: Frequently Asked Questions

Question Answer
Can I connect three DStv decoders in XtraView? Yes, up to three decoders (Explora and HD) can be connected.
Why are my Explora decoders losing picture intermittently? This may be due to incorrect userband settings on the LNB.
What does the E143 error message mean? It indicates a lack of heartbeat signal from the primary decoder.
What happens if the primary decoder is off? Secondary decoders will not function correctly.

Final Thoughts on DStv Extra View

DStv Extra View is a fantastic feature for households with diverse viewing preferences. It provides the flexibility to watch different channels on multiple TVs under one subscription. While the setup requires some technical know-how, the convenience and enhanced viewing experience it offers are well worth the effort.

For those who may find the installation process daunting, professional assistance is readily available. Remember, a correctly installed Extra View setup not only enhances your viewing experience but also ensures consistent performance without interruptions.

As we wrap up this comprehensive guide, I hope you’ve gained valuable insights into DStv Extra View. Whether it’s understanding the pricing, installation process, or troubleshooting common issues, this guide is designed to provide you with a thorough understanding of how to maximize your DStv subscription with Extra View.


With over a decade of experience in satellite installation, Mthunzi is a seasoned Satellite Installation Technician at DStv Pro Installation. Recognized for his meticulous attention to detail and expert knowledge in signal troubleshooting, Mthunzi has successfully completed over 1,000 installations, earning a reputation for reliability and excellence. Certified and constantly updated on the latest technology, he’s the go-to professional you can trust for a seamless DStv experience.

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