Aligning your satellite dish at a satellite 22 000 miles away can be a frustrating task. DishPointer with Google MAPS made it a lot easier by providing visual clues.

Now with Google Earth, it’s even a lot of fun. Switch on the Terrain and 3D Buildings layers and see in 3D how the signal comes down all the way from the satellite to your house. Are there any buildings in the way? Where is the best location for the dish for a clear line of sight? Can you receive the satellite at all? You’ll get the answers to all these questions.

Using the 3D DishPointer DishPointer map
Underneath the map, click on the Google Earth Icon once you’ve positioned the marker and selected the right satellite. If you have Google Earth installed on your machine (if not, download it from here), the DishPointer line will open up in Google Earth. Make sure that the Terrain and 3D Buildings layer are switched on.

DishPointer map in GE - blocked view
The red line shows the satellite signal. Your initial location (say, you are a news broadcaster and that’s where you stopped with your satellite uplink truck) is no good, the building is in the way. There is no clear line of sight to the satellite. But you can move to another location with the following steps:

right click
drag line
Right-click on the description “Alignment line to 91W”, select properties and then drag the end node to your new position. Finally, click ok.

Clear alignment line
That’s better. At your new location the line is clear, you’re ready to go.

What else can you do?

DishPointer map in GE - Clarke belt
Load up as many satellites as you like and see how the satellites are nicely aligned on the horizon along the clarke belt.

DishPointer map in GE - Negative Elevation
See which satellites are on the other side of the earth. The signal would have to go through the earth to reach you – which is impossible. That’s why you can’t get these satellites.

Hope you’ll have a bit of fun with this and maybe gain some new insights into satellite reception.

22 Responses to “Google Earth 3D DishPointer”
  1. David Bradley says:

    Hi have been in the game of aerial and satellite installations for 20 plus years. i am writing to say a BIG thankyou for and excellent site and service. Living in the U.K most installations are relatively easy with regards to finding the bird and locking down, but i always check on motorised, multi lnb and potentially tricky installs. I completed an install today 17/05/08 and without entering the postcode and satellite info beforehand and taking note of all parameters and the line of sight marker it would deffinately have been a nightmare job. Install was on a terraced house with THOR 1w as the required bird, problem being that the line of sight was smack bang down the center line of the terrace. 1 mtr dish and no dishes allowed on front of property, only option left was rear above slightly sloping extension roof. After checking line of sight today before leaving all indications shown that line of sight was exactly following edge of roof and gutter. To cut an already long story short, 12′ T&K 4′ by 2″ mast and BINGO locked onto signal with FSM 450 fine tuned and job was a good one. THanks again for an invaluable Tool.

  2. John Buatti says:

    Well, what can I say!
    You get the full picture with this dish pointer!!
    As well as getting all the coordinates that you need you also get a graphical positioning of the satellite from your location, but the best part is that if you are trying to tune to a satellite which is out of range (below the horizon) you get a red line as well as a red elevation value which means that you don’t waist your time in trying to tune in to it.
    Thank you for the very helpful tool!!

  3. allan angga says:

    i want to know the right positioning of my satellite disk

  4. bob says:

    I cant seem to find the dates the pictures are taken may you can help thanks

  5. Alan says:

    Bob: I think at the bottom of the imagery, the year is given.

  6. Magic says:

    That site works perfect and faster than lightning!

    Could see my place from the satellite in about one second.

  7. Majdi says:
  8. GS300 says:

    Need info for Echostar 5 from Baton Rouge Louisiana, elevation,azmith,skew

  9. Westone says:

    Hi, I’m just reading it to studies more about Satellite Installing Technical in order to surprise my family.
    After i submit this comment, I’m go in to buy satellite’s part & tools. I hope i can do it, but I’m not sure.
    I’ll come back and let all of your guy know, I’m trying the first time, be sure i need help part to part of from beginning to finished. I’m great thank full for your website, your time from beginning to publish. good bye and will come back let you know.

    West One 2008

  10. Andy says:

    I dont know how to set sattelite without anyone’s help.

  11. Andy says:

    I am waiting answer from you regarding sattelite, that how to line up dish to sattelite.


  12. Shailesh says:

    I want to see my home, city states clear & near

  13. Maze says:

    Could you please let me yous this program

  14. Rick Wiggins says:

    i need 3d pointers both static and animated

  15. manjeet says:

    i need this system how can i get . reply soon

  16. TGJackson says:

    Nifty program. BTW have any of you guys tried buying equipment online from various vendors? For example and

    I was wondering how their service is? seems to be the lowest prices I can find but was wondering how their service might be compared to others like sadon?

  17. Bazinbarna says:

    Your excellent site has confirmed graphically that I’ve set my dish up right and that there are no obstacles however I my decoder gives me a signal strength of 75-80% but no Quality. My basic Sat signal strength detector gives a strong signal. Is there anything basic that I might have missed? I’ve got a new mvision hd200 combo loaded with freesat channels from a reliable site for astra2d. cheers for any help….

  18. sentayehu says:

    It is a blessing to have great popele like u .

  19. ND-Trini says:

    Good day to you Alan,

    I take this opportunity to thank both you and Google for this excellent aid for persons, like myself, who live in parts of the world where things may be a little more tricky. This is particularly so when you have friends who did not take advice and placed equipment in almost the opposite direction to what was necessary. After a difficult afternoon with little success I took it upon myself to follow your directions with some input from the said friends, this time via the phone, and with the aid of my lady…..Bam!!

    Thanks so much

  20. koti says:

    i want to see the map

  21. manuel perez says:

    loking for a sat.

  22. Uğur Akgöz says:

    very cool apps,
    finding satellites can’t be easier, tahnks a lot,
    i have linked to this web site, so more people
    have the information for this.
    greetings from Ankara TR