DD Free Dish


DD Free Dish is India's only Free Direct-To-Home Service primarily known as DD Direct +. This service was launched in December, 2004. DD Free Dish DTH service is owned and operated by Public Service Broadcaster Prasar Bharati (Doordarshan).

More about DTH

· What is DTH

· DD Free Dish

· Future of DD Free Dish

· Difference

· How to Receive

· FAQs

What is DTH

​In general, DTH service is the one in which a large number of channels are digitally compressed, encrypted, uplinked and beamed down over a territory from a very high power satellite. The DTH signals can be received directly at homes with the help of a small sized dish receive unit containing a Dish Antenna of diameter 60 to 90 cm installed at the building’s roof-top or on the wall facing clear south and one indoor

Set-Top-Box unit facilitating viewing of demultiplexed signals from DTH channel bouquet on TV set. The DTH signals can be received anywhere across the country irrespective of the terrain conditions provided the area comes under the footprint of the Satellite.

DTH transmission eliminates the intervening role of a local cable operator since a user is directly connected to the DTH service. DTH Transmission is most preferred in Ku- Band so as to avoid the need of larger Dish sizes for suitably receiving the DTH signals. As the DTH telecast is in the Digital mode, user is able to reap all the benefits of Digital transmission. Programs in the DTH bouquet are having higher resolution picture and better audio quality than traditional analog signals.

Direct-to-Home (DTH) satellite television is becoming a buzzword in the satellite broadcast industry due to the fact that DTH offers immense opportunities to both broadcasters and viewers. Thanks to the rapid development of digital technology, DTH broadcast operators worldwide have been able to introduce a large number of new interactive applications in the television market besides a large number of entertainment programmes over a single delivery platform. In addition, since digital technology permits a highly efficient exploitation of the frequency spectrum, the number of TV channels that can be broadcast using digital technology is significantly higher than with analogue technology. The increased number of television channels allows the operator to satisfy the demand of a number of niche markets with dedicated transmissions.

What is DD Free Dish?

Doordarshan’s DD Free Dish is a multi-channel Free-To-Air Direct to Home (DTH) service. This service was launched in December’2004 with the modest beginning of 33 channels. This service was inaugurated by Hon’ble Prime Minister of India. DD Free Dish has been upgraded time to time and at present Doordarshan’s DTH platform has the capacity of 64 SDTV channels along with 24 Radio channels. DD Free Dish is available in Ku-Band on INSAT-4B (at 93.5°E) having MPEG-2 DVB-S, 4 streams of channels with Downlink Frequencies -10990, 11070, 11150 and 11570 MHz. This Ku-Band DTH service provides the TV coverage throughout the Indian territory (except Andaman & Nicobar Islands). DTH signals can be received through a small sized dish receive system ( i.e. Set Top Box and Dish of size 60 to 90 cm in diameter) for which no monthly subscription fee is payable by the viewers.

A separate DTH service in C-Band with a bouquet of 10 channels has also been provided by Doordarshan exclusively for Andaman & Nicobar Islands, which is also Free-To-Air. This C-Band DTH service is available on INSAT-4B (at 93.5°E) with downlink frequency of 3925 MHz, 27500 Ksps, FEC-3/4, Pol-H, L.O.-5150MHz. This service can be received through a STB and small sized Dish Antenna (approximately 120 cm diameter) for which also no monthly subscription fee is payable by viewers.

Future of DD Free Dish?

Expansion of DD Free Dish has been carried out time to time. The present capacity is likely to be enhanced to 112 SDTV channels and 40 Radio channels in near future with the introduction of two new MPEG-4, DVB-S2 stream.

How DD Free Dish is different from other DTH systems?

Most of the DTH Services, operating all over the world and in India, provide paid DTH Service. In the paid service, the DTH operators uplink the encrypted TV signals to the satellite and the signals are received by subscribers through a Dish receive system having a Dish Antenna and one Customized Set Top Box (DIGITAL DECODER). By choosing the bunch of various desired TV channels viz-a-viz the respective payment plan options, subscribers are given a key-code to decode/decrypt the TV channels through customized set top box. The subscription charges for viewing these channels are collected by the DTH operator.

Whereas, DD Free Dish is absolutely different,as Doordarshan is not charging any monthly subscription fee from the viewers for complete bouquet of the DD Free Dish channels, making the system quite affordable for all as it requires only a small one time investment in purchasing of Dish Receive System containing Set-Top-Box and small sized Dish Antenna.

How to receive DD Free Dish?

Receive system of DD Free Dish contains three units: 1) One small sized Dish Antenna along with LNBF 2) Indoor Set-Top-Box (STB) also known as IRD (Integrated Receiver Decoder) and 3) Handy Remote control unit for STB. Dish Antenna installed at the roof top or on wall facing clear south receives the signal from satellite and transmits it to the indoor Set top box unit. The set top box further decodes the different TV channels from the DTH bouquet and feeds it to the TV set for viewing.

The complete DD Free Dish DTH system (Dish Antenna, Set Top Box and Remote control unit) is a one-time purchase from the open market with a nominal cost. There is absolutely no further recurring expenditure in terms of monthly subscription etc. for viewing DD Free Dish Channels.

Installation of the Receive System:

Installation of the DTH receive system is very easy and does not take much time. The viewers may take the services of skilled technical personnel to get the dish installed and oriented towards the desired Satellite, followed by tuning/configuring the Set-Top-Box unit. Dish Installation and STB-Tuning procedure is normally mentioned in the manual supplied by respective manufacturer along with their receive system. As a broad guideline, some of the parameters which may be required to be fed to the STB are indicated below.

Satellite in use:

INSAT series Geostationary Satellite INSAT-4B from ISRO is being used to provide the services of DD Free Dish in Ku-Band. Reception of DD Free Dish signal is available throughout the length and breadth of the Indian Territory except Andaman & Nicobar Islands.


Satellite’s Orbital location: 93.5° East

DTH Receive Parameters:

Receive parameters of the Doordarshan’s DTH bouquet of TV channels (spread in 4 streams), are as follows:



Downlink Frequency (MHz)

LNB Frequency


Symbol Rate



K13 (36 MHz)






K15 (36 MHz)






K17 (36 MHz)






K21 (36 MHz)






Following is the suggestive tuning procedure of STB for receiving the TV Channels. However if need be, the viewers may consult the installation manual supplied with STB or contact the nearest STB Dealer.

1. Satellite Name:

a) Go to Installation menu or setup Programme from remote.

b) Select Satellite Edit menu.

c) Select Add New Satellite menu

d) Select Sat Name Edit menu.

e) Enter Satellite Name as INSAT- 4B.

f) Enter Satellite Longitude as 93.5° E

g) Press Exit

2. LNB Configuration

a) Go to LNB Configuration menu. Ensure that satellite selected

is INSAT- 4B only.

b) Set LNB Types as Universal.

c) Set LNB Power on.

d) Press Exit

3. Transport streams of Transponder (TP) Edit:

a) Go to Transponder Edit menu. Ensure that satellite selected is


b) Select Add New TP menu.

c) Enter TP Frequency as 10990 MHz

d) Select Symbol rate as 28500 Ksps.

e) Select Polarization as Vertical.

f) Select Scan as FTA.

g) Press OK.

h) ‘22K’ OFF*

i) ‘Disc. Equal’. Off

After filling the above values Go to ‘Search’

Press ‘OK’

The new 16 TV and 06 Radio services will be displayed. Similarly add all other three Transport streams (TPs) by entering respective frequencies, symbol rate and polarization as given in Table above

Note: - The above-mentioned steps may be in different order in some of the STBs.


Q. What is DD Free Dish?

A. DD Free Dish is India's first and one and only Free-to-Air (FTA) Direct-To-Home (DTH) Service from Doordarshan.

Q. What is FTA DTH?

A. Normally all over the world the DTH operator charges the activation charges and monthly subscription charges depending upon the channels to be viewed. DD Free Dish is a unique Free-To-Air DTH in which the subscriber can buy the receive unit from open market and start viewing the programmes without paying a penny as subscription.

Q. What is the composition of DD Free Dish bouquet?

A. DD Free Dish bouquet is a fantastic combination of Doordarshan TV channels, Private TV Channels and Radio channels of All India Radio.

Q. What is the maximum number of channels, which can be put on DD Free Dish?

A. The number of channels would be increased in phases. At present DD Free Dish DTH platform has a capacity of 64 SDTV channels and 24 Radio channels.

Q. When the DD Free Dish service started?

A. The DD Free Dish bouquet was formally inaugurated by our Honorable Prime Minister of India on 16/12/2004. It was primarily known as DD Direct +. At present the transmission is 'ON' with 64 SDTV and 24 Radio channels.

Q. What is the reach of DD Free Dish?

A. DD Free Dish in Ku-Band is available throughout the country except in Andaman & Nicobar Islands and reaches even those places where Terrestrial or cable TV is not available like border, remote & tribal areas. A separate 10 channel DTH service in C-Band has been provided by Doordarshan exclusively for Andaman & Nicobar Islands, which is also Free- To-Air.

Q. What are the advantages of DD Free Dish over cable connection?

A. DD Free Dish ensures excellent Picture Quality for all the channels in the bouquet. There is no intermediary as one gets the signals directly from the broadcasters. There are no recurring charges to be paid by subscribers to view any of the programs.

Q. Can DD Free Dish be viewed without disconnecting existing cable connection?

A. Cable connection can be viewed in normal TV mode and DTH channels can be viewed in AV Mode by choosing the AV option from the remote of your TV set. DTH channels can be changed using STB remote control.

Q. Once the Dish & Decoder are installed, will it be possible to receive all channels?

A. Yes, all the channels available in the bouquet can be received once the receive equipment is installed.

Q. If there are more than one TV set in one house; will all TV sets require separate STBs/Dishes to receive DD Free Dish?

A. Yes, for each TV, a separate STB will be required.

Q. If one shifts his residence or moves to some other city, can he continue to use the same STB and the Dish to receive DD Free Dish?

A. Yes, one can carry the equipment anywhere in India and continue to enjoy DD Free Dish after installing the dish at the new location to track the satellite.

Q. Will the reception be affected by rains/snowfall?

A. Though provision exists in the uplink system to take care of fading of the signal due to rains, yet heavy rains may result into temporary outage in the DTH signal.

Q. Where can the Dish be installed?

A. Dish can be installed on the rooftop or on the wall surface facing clear south.

Q. Are any Audio (Radio) channels also available in DD Free Dish?

A. Yes, at present there are 24 Radio channels available in the bouquet

Q. Is Doordarshan marketing/selling/appointing dealers for the Receive Equipment?

A. No. The equipment is available in the open market and can be purchased from any TV Dealer. Doordarshan has not authorized anybody to sell the Receive Equipment nor has given any dealership, etc., for this purpose.

Q. Subscription Fee etc.?

A. It is clarified that no subscription fee is required to be paid to anybody for receiving the DD Free Dish signal. The service is totally free and the only expenditure involved is on one time purchase of Receive Equipment, which is available in the open market on nominal cost.

Q.Is Doordarshan appointing any dealer in future for marketing the platform/receive equipment/subscribers/customers?

A. No dealers have been appointed by Doordarshan so far.

Q. What should be the cost of the Receive Equipment for DD Free Dish?

A. The indicative price of a Receive System may be less than Rs.2000.

It may however vary with the make of equipment and will also depend upon the local taxes/prevailing custom duty, etc.

Q. Can the receive System be installed by the viewer himself?

A. Detailed procedure for installation is given in the website. However, it is advisable to take the help of skilled technical person for the installation of the system.

Q. What are the channels available on the DD FREE DISH platform?

A. The information is available on the Link: DD Free Dish Channel List.

Q. Can the Receive Dish be fixed on the window grill?

A. It may be possible to get the dish fixed on the window grill with slight modification on the grill or the fixtures but it is desirable to fix the dish on rigid wall (outside) or roof top .

Q. Will the DD Free Dish available in a particular city/locality?

A. The signal can be received anywhere in India.

Q. Which are the dealers of the equipment in a particular city/town?

A. DTH receive equipment is generally available with all the TV dealers / shops.

Q. Will DD Free Dish signal be available to my remote village, where no TV tower is installed?

A. Yes, the DD Free Dish signal is made available to you through satellite and doesn’t require any tower or cable for its distribution.

Q. Are you providing any value added service like Internet etc. over your DTH platform?

A. No, presently no such service is being provided.

Q. Channel name in TV channel list is different than the Actual TV program shown? in that case what shall I do ?

A. In the STB the change in program (TV channel) is detected but the information of changed channel name is not stored automatically. The required change of information can be stored by deleting the earlier information and reinstalling (scanning) the new channel information.

Q. How to update the changes in TV channel tuning manually?

A: The procedure to update the changes in program name varies from make to make of STBs. Follow the procedure mentioned in the installation manual supplied along-with the STB. However, as broad guidelines the steps involved are as indicated in the example given hereunder:


Following are the steps to be followed to scan or search the channels on DD Free Dish DTH bouquet.

Press ‘Menu’ Button on Remote of DD Free Dish Set-Top-Box

Go to ‘Installation’ or ‘Setup Programme’

Fill the details as below

‘Satellite’ INSAT 4B

‘T P Frequency’ 10990 MHz

‘LNB Frequency’ 09750 MHz

‘Symbol rate’ 28500 Ksps

‘Polarization’ V

‘22K’ OFF

‘Search mode’ FTA

‘Disc. Equal’. Off

After filling the above values go to ‘Search’

Press ‘OK’​


The new TV and Radio services will be displayed.

For other frequencies and related parameters refer to table below.

Note:-The above-mentioned steps may be in different order in some of the STBs. In case there is any difficulty, viewers are advised to contact the nearest STB dealer.

The different transponder frequency, LNB frequency, symbol rate etc. required to tune to the STBs for all the channels available in the DD Free Dish are summarized as below: - ​


​Transponder Frequency


Rate (Ksps)








































Q. How to delete TV channel programme in STB manually?

A. The procedure to delete TV Channel programme in the TV channel list varies from make to make of STBs. Follow the procedure mentioned in the installation manual supplied along-with the STB.


Following are the steps to be followed to delete channels in TV channel list.

Go to ‘Edit Programme’

Select the channel, using up down key.

Press ‘OK’

In case there is any difficulty, viewers are advised to contact the nearest STB dealer.​​