Announcing Our New RVDatasat 840 Satellite Internet System

After nearly eight years of our love/hate relationship with MotoSat, we were very excited to learn about the new RVDataSat 840 satellite internet system now being offered by our service provider, Mobilsat (Mobil Satellite Technologies). I was even more excited to help with the install and be the first registered user on their new Insta-Sat network.

RV Datasat 840 Satellite Internet Dish Calibration

Watching new RVDataSat 840 perform first dish calibration.

I have a lot to say so about our new system already, so this will likely be the first of many rvdatasat tagged blog posts. Suffice it to say, however, I am very pleased with our purchase! Any full-time RVers who prefer to travel far beyond the well beaten path of cellular network reach should seriously consider the new RVDataSat 840 if they require reliable internet service from anywhere.

Pictured at Right: The roof-mounted RVDataSat 840 performs dish calibration at the touch of a button.

Why I Love Our New RVDataSat 840 Satellite Internet Dish

This is a beautiful sight:

RV Datasat 840 Satellite Internet Dish

RVDataSat 840 Satellite Internet Dish on Arctic Fox fifth Wheel

So is this:

RV Datasat 840 Satellite Internet Dish Controller

Satellite internet service locked in one and a half minutes.

I’ve been speaking with MobilSat about this new system since I had to repair our MotoSat mount last year. If only the RVDataSat 840 had been available then! But I digress…

We were familiar with the many features similar to our previous MotoSat system, but various benefits of the RVDataSat 840 convinced us to invest in this new system:

  • roof-mounted .84m satellite dish
  • easy to install mount and hardware
  • no modem commissioning required
  • one-touch controller with display and html interface
  • no contract, pay as you go bandwidth

MobilSat’s RVDataSat 840 is easy to install and includes all required networking hardware—iDirect modem, dish controller, wireless router, and cabling. Once we decided on our purchase, we called Don Marr at Oregon Satellite RV who installed our original MotoSat dish back in 2007. Installation is much easier with a lift, and we needed to do something with our old system. You may be able to get a deal on it since Don sells lots of used satellite internet equipment and MotoSat parts!

At $5995 the RVDataSat 840 is an investment. But this is not about having the latest and greatest internet gadget. This is a long term investment in the lifestyle we love to live! I can’t wait to really put this system to the test when we’re boondocking somewhere in Big Bend or the middle of nowhere once we head south for the winter. Until then, well, it has been performing beyond my expectations so far.

The first thing I noticed about the RVDataSat 840, is the incredible speed of the mount. With our old F2 dish, it would take anywhere from 10 to 40+ minutes to lock on to our satellite. This was always a strain on me and our batteries when out in the boonies.

DataSAT Dish Controller Interface

DataSAT ACU-1 Satellite Antenna Controller

With this new system, waiting to get online has yet to take longer than a few minutes. The calibration routine is much quicker, and satellite signal identification and optimization by the DataSAT controller can be described in one word: Fast!

Next, I had always known that iDirect satellite internet service was faster than our previous HughesNet connection. Having never used the former, I just had no idea how much faster. MobilSat promises maximum speeds of up to 4 Mbps download and 512 Kbps upload. Look at this speed test comparison I did one night when our new system was performing better than our Verizon Mifi wireless hotspot.

RVDataSat Broadband Speedtest

Broadband internet service results from speedtest.net.

For those who say satellite internet will never compare to wireless broadband, here’s our proof. Granted, there are many variables when performing such tests, and I could do more. But the true test lies in real life application. With our new Insta-Sat service, we are now able to stream YouTube movies, upload large files faster, and use intensive apps like Buffer, Tweetdeck and PicMonkey with much better success than we ever had in the past over HughesNet.

Doing these sort of things—and other online tasks we must perform daily to manage our business—from locations without cellular service are a must for us, and only possible with satellite internet service. The RVDataSat 840 is perfect for the job!

With MotoSat no longer in business, this new system from MobilSat is the only consumer level automatic satellite internet antenna currently available. There is a clear need for it, and RVers will surely be impressed! Having used the new system for just a couple weeks now, I am quite pleased with its performance and ease of use.

I could go on and on, and likely will in future posts. Stay tuned for details about the simple Insta-Sat registration process, helpful features of the DataSAT controller, and a bit of satellite internet industry history I learned while working with the fine folks at MobilSat and RF Mogul.

Any Questions?

RV Datasat 840 Satellite Internet Dish

Roof-mounted RV Datasat 840 Satellite Internet Dish

UPDATES:

1. After receiving a comment about the upload speed screenshot above, I’ve been periodically running additional tests. As I mentioned, various factors can affect actual speeds, and results may vary…

RVDataSat Speed Test

RVDataSat Upload Speed Test Results

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9 Responses to “Announcing Our New RVDatasat 840 Satellite Internet System”

  1. Hi,

    I’m curious if you still love your system and how your satellite dish has fared since its installation. My husband and I depend upon the internet for work but we plan on doing a lot of boondocking so reliable internet access and phone is a necessity. I’m looking at the RV DataSAT 840 and Singlepoint WiFi In Motion. Any advice is much appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Maryann

    • We love it MaryAnn! We simply would not be able to enjoy the lifestlye we do without MobilSat. We now have VoIP service that has kept us totally connected while boondocking way off the grid for weeks at a time. I am still thrilled with the speeds for satellite, and if/when we ever need more bandwidth, we just purchase the data we need. If you go with MobilSat, tell them Jim @LiveWorkDream referred you.

  2. Whats the monthly cost of this? I just briefly(like less than a minute) looked at the MobilSat website and their pricing seemed very HIGH. You mention you stream movies and such, at those rates on their website, that would be expensive streaming.

    • Whats the monthly cost of this? … that would be expensive streaming.

      “HIGH” is relative Lee. We use our internet service primarily for business purposes so it is a necessity, no matter where we are. I said that we can stream videos. Which is a vast improvement over our previous HughesNet service! This solution may not be for those who just want to stream videos…

      Our actual monthly cost will just depend on how much bandwidth we choose to purchase in advance, and how fast we decide to use it. Follow the link above to the Insta-SAT service plans for details. But that’s the beauty of this revolutionary service! Should we land somewhere with decent cellular broadband, we can just use up our MobilSat service or let it run out and turn it back on when we need it—without any contract or fee.

  3. Sweet, glad to see some real world experience! Will be curious to see some more speed results, the 400k upload is definitely better than the initial, would like to know how your ping time varies as well.

  4. Chris,

    The upload speeds are performing as advertised, speedtests are somewhat inaccurate over satellite due to the inherent latency in the network, an ftp test will show accurate upload speeds less overhead.

    As for the HughesNet tri-pod system, this is a very high latency, oversubscribed Gen 1 KA network, the pointing process is 1-3 hours of work and finding a place to carry a dish, tri-pod and feed assembly can be a challenge. The RVDataSat on the other hand is 1 button operation, 1-3 minutes of search time and success.

    We realize our product is not for everyone, it has hit it’s target market precisely, our product is for the owner who wants to be connected at all times, not effected by locally overloaded or missing cellular networks and horrible campground Wi-Fi systems.

    Our latency is the lowest in the industry with the use of iDirect HUB and remote hardware, VoIP is available for 49.95 per month with unlimited local and domestic long distance included, Skype and Face-time work as well.

    We are very proud of the RVDataSat 840 and the revolutionary InstaSat service, they will continue to gain acceptance and fulfill the need in the RV market for 100% connectivity.

    I welcome your response.

    Bud Burton
    President
    Mobil Satellite Technologies

    • Thank you for the feedback and clarification Bud!

    • Indeed – nothing beats one button convenience. For anyone who moves frequently, a roof system is absolutely invaluable. Tripods are only really well suited for seasonal moves – and even then there are plenty of headaches.

      Everyone needs to weigh their own personal tradeoffs to decide what is right for them – it is great to at last have some new options!

      Cheers,

      – Chris

  5. Hi Jim –

    It is great to see your hands-on experience with the RV DataSAT 840 – I will add a link to this page to our news story announcing it:
    http://www.rvmobileinternet.com/a-new-satellite-option-rv-datasat-840-antenna-insta-sat-service/

    For those who don’t want or can’t fit a roof-mounted system, there is a new tripod-based satellite option from RTC that was just announced. They are reselling mobile-enabled HughesNet Ka-band (spot beam) Spaceway service for $99/mo, with speeds of 5Mbps down and 1Mbps up.

    Here are the details on that option:
    http://www.rvmobileinternet.com/another-new-rv-satellite-internet-option-mobile-hughesnet-ka-band-service-from-rtc/

    I am surprised at the upload speediest you posted of just 250kbps – is that the normal you have been seeing the the DataSAT 840? Hopefully they can tweak things to get closer to the advertised target speed.

    It is once again an exciting time for RV satellite internet options!

    – Chris // http://www.technomadia.com & http://www.RVMobileInternet.com

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