Sky Digibox
Sky Analogue


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NOTE: This analogue receiver is obsolete. Most accessories and modifications mentioned on this page are no longer available.

Pace PRD and Churchill kits explained


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Read this before fitting a kit. In fact it's a good idea to read it before ordering a kit.
Please also read the relevant FAQ page for your specific receiver.

Download my FREE book. The second part deals with repairs.

SATKIT 7 for the Churchill is identical to SATKIT 1 except that the component board numbers are different. Where relevant, I have put the (Churchill) number in brackets ().
There is no "RELKIT" for the Churchill decoder but individual capacitors may be ordered separately.

Power Supply Kits and Reliability Upgrade Kits
DO NOT SIMPLY REPLACE THE FUSE! It is there to protect YOU and the receiver. If you replace it you can make the damage worse and put yourself at risk!

RELKITs contain mostly high-reliability capacitors which help get rid of streaks and lines that were not present when the receiver was new. Often the capacitors fail after the receiver has been left to cool down.

RELKITs can also repair a "dead" receiver. This is most likely when:

  • The receiver makes a noise - "ticking" or "whistling"
  • The fuse has not melted
  • The 1R fusible resistor R8 (R147) still measures 1R

In the case of Churchill decoders, if the fuse has not melted and R147 measures 1 Ohm then try replacing C51 (22uF) C34, C36 (both 10uF) and C88 (47uF/400v).

SATKITs are intended to fix a completely dead power supply that gives no output voltages. In almost all cases, the fuse FS1 (F1A) will have melted and/or the 1R fusible resistor R8 (R147) will be damaged. R14 (R146) may also burn up big time!

If your receiver is dead but you think you should fit BOTH kits, you should order "PRDKIT 1". This way you will still receive SATKIT 1 and RELKIT 1 but those parts which are duplicated in one kit will be omitted and you will get a discount. (This does not apply to Churchill decoder for which only SATKIT 7 is available).

Please read the notes that come with each kit. They are short and concise to fit on one sheet but they are designed to help you. I get a few people who mail me to say "I fitted your kit but the PSU went bang again". When I ask "did you make the checks and measurements, described in the notes, before applying power?" they reply:


Fitting the kit is not sufficient. It's too easy to make mistakes. DO check your work for solder-shorts, cracked tracks (use a meter) and measure those low-value resistors and diodes that are not supplied in the kit. It's too late after the "bang". Be patient and do those checks!

Note: C2 (C88) is NOT in the SATKIT but is in the RELKIT or available separately. C2 is a common cause of power supply failure but not so common that I want to add it to the SATKIT. If this capacitor has failed then it's likely that many others have, too. A capacitor meter will show when an electrolytic is totally dead but will not necessarily show a "borderline" device. Electrolytic capacitors should be measured with an ESR meter. All good workshops have one but you at home will not. If in doubt, replace capacitors.

Dry or broken solder joints are a common cause of problems
Check the connections to regulator REG1 which has a black metal heatsink attached. If you put the board upside down you can easily break the pads or tracks to which REG1 is soldered.
Check the solder joints of the mains input power socket and the Audio output sockets.

"My transformer whistles. I think it is faulty". It probably is not. In the 20,000 repairs I've done, I've only found three faulty transformers and these were all clearly smashed or cracked. Replacing a transformer to cure a whistle is the same as replacing the loudspeaker in a radio to cure a whistle. It makes the noise but it doesn't cause it. A whistling noise indicates that the power supply is operating at the wrong frequency (normally it operates at an inaudible ultrasonic frequency). The fault cause can be a capacitor, resistor, diode, IC or transistor. Measure everything.

Resistors can be measured on the resistance range of a multimeter. Sometimes other components affect the reading and you must desolder one end. Diodes can be measured with the diode range of a multimeter. Low-power diodes usually give a reading of 500 to 600 millivolts in one direction and infinitely high in the other. Higher power diodes give a reading of 200 to 500 millivolts in one direction. Diodes usually go short-circuit in both directions when they fail. If the reading is very low in both directions, disconnect one leg and measure the diode again. Electrolytic capacitors can be measured in-circuit with an ESR meter or out of circuit with a capacitance meter. However, the capacitance meter is not a reliable guide. If it reads very low then the capacitor is definitely faulty. If it reads correctly then the capacitor might still be faulty. Power transistors often go short-circuit when they fail and this will show up on a diode testing range, provided that you understand how to use it! I.C.s are difficult to measure but, in the case of the PRD power supply, measure diode D10 after replacing all other faulty components (including D10 if faulty). If D10 now reads low (300 millivolts instead of 500 millivolts approximately) then the TEA2018A is probably faulty.

Pace receivers use metal covers held by 3mm "Taptite" cross-head Pozidriv screws. Be sure to use a #1 Pozidriv screwdriver or you will damage the screw head. Pace Printed Circuit Boards are held by two-part plastic rivets. The first part of the rivet is a hollow base with legs that are forced out beneath the board by the second part which is shaped like a mushroom. Lift the mushroom head with small, sharp cutters or a knife blade. You will then be able to lift out the lower part of the plastic rivet quite easily. There is NO need to cut it, drill it or melt it with a soldering iron!
The PCB rests on white plastic pillars with a bifurcated (split) end. Squeeze together the split end of each pillar with pliers and lift the PCB carefully. Do not bend or twist the board or you will damage the brittle surface mount components soldered underneath.
When you replace the board, push down close to the white supports. Fit the two-part rivets through the board. Do NOT fit half of the rivet beneath the board as some people do - it won't hold it and presents a safety hazard.
If the front panel side tabs snap off, repair them as shown in the PRD FAQ.

Churchill decoders are held by self-tapping screws plus two threaded screws at sides. Don't mix these up. Look for a plastic screw near the fuse which MUST be replaced here for safety. Also a fibre washer beneath the screw at the centre of the board.

The copper tracks are very thin and are held to the board with something like "Araldite" adhesive. Excessive heat applied for too long will degrade this adhesive and lift the copper track and solder pad. It is important to work quickly but carefully to avoid damage. You can use "Multicore desolder wick®" (copper braid impregnated with flux) to remove solder but you must NOT use a pump-action solder sucker. If you DO damage a track, you should repair it with Teflon-covered wire which should be glued down to avoid the risk that it might break and touch a live mains connection. Have a look at our Solder Kit. It's supplied at no profit to help you be successful.

The "tuner" is the metal box with screw connector at the rear of the receiver. If you want to discuss upgrades with us PLEASE quote the part number which begins 221-. You will find it printed on your tuner. Later tuners with "77" in the part number have a tuning range of 2GHz.
Early tuners have "75" in the part number which is printed on the tuner.
The latest tuners have "78" and extend to 2.15 GHz.

If your receiver has a 1.75GHz range tuner and an old "standard 10.0GHz" LNB (see LNB FAQ) you will NOT receive the full range of Astra satellite programmes unless you attach a "Channel Expander" (which shifts ALL frequencies by 500MHz). However, a "Channel Expander" has to be selected for some channels and not for others. In addition, it relies upon your old LNB passing the Astra 1D frequencies (which it was not designed to do). The "Channel Expander" is worth a try but is not the ideal solution.

What you really want is to use an "Enhanced LNB" (which shifts all channels up by 250MHz) but you'll need an increased tuning range if you want to receive the highest frequencies such as "Sky Sports 3".

The tuning range can be increased by changing the value of one surface mount resistor. This is marked "224" and sits beneath the board close to the lugs of the tuner furthest from the screw connector. This resistor should be removed and replaced with a higher value. Anything from 470k ("474") to 680k ("684") will do. You can then fit an "Enhanced" LNB to your dish and tune in all available Astra (analogue) channels. Tune each channel 250 higher than the frequency listed in the magazines. This upgrade costs nothing if you ask for the resistor as part of an order. Alternatively, send us two 26p stamps (uk only) with a note explaining what you want to do.

In addition, if you do not want the work of retuning each channel by 250MHz, you can fit an "Enhanced" microprocessor kit. This includes a 40 pin I.C. which replaces the existing U2 chip. You will also need to fit additional surface mount components. The new micro gives you the option to select either 10.0, 10.75 or 9.75GHz to match your LNB. The "Enhanced Micro Kit" 808-8663032 costs £18.24 plus postage (per order).
Very early PRD receivers had a square micro and an Eprom on an upside-down board which was plugged in place of U2. It is possible to change the Eprom and to modify the upside-down board so that it works as an "Enhanced micro." (An Eprom is a chip with a glass window covered by a label). Unplug and send this board to us, very carefully packed, for modification at a cost of £15.00 plus postage. Alternatively, if the Eprom itself is in a socket on the upside-down board, we can post you an "Enhanced" one with instructions at a cost of 10.00 ukp plus postage. If the Eprom is soldered into the board *please* do not attempt to desolder it. The equipment that we use cost 800.00.

If you need a tuning range of 2.0 GHz we can supply a replacement PRD800 tuner kit at a cost of £23.75 plus postage. Twin input version for PRD900 £25.75. These kits include surface mount components. You should not attempt to fit these unless you already have experience in dealing with them. You need good eyesight, 0.4mm solder (very thin!) a soldering iron with a 1mm tip and suitable tweezers.

Channel increase
If you want to increase your PRD800 (or equivalent) to 199 channels, we can supply a kit. This kit works only in receivers which have a microprocessor U2 marked 809-8661006. If your U2 has a different number, you will need to fit an 809-8661006 micro (occasionally we might have a used one available) or else fit kit 808-8663032 to give Enhanced menu options as well.

If you want to listen to none-Astra programmes which use wideband audio then we can supply a "J17" kit of parts (mostly surface mount) for £14.95 plus postage. This is a pig to fit so please order it only if you are confident that you can handle these tiny Surface Mount components.

If you fit a "Universal" LNB to your dish, you may wish to select "high band" which uses the 10.6GHz local oscillator instead of 9.75GHz. This requires the insertion of a 22kHz tone into the LNB cable. We can supply an internal 22kHz tone inserter board.

If you don't understand what a "Universal" LNB does, you should read the LNB FAQ.

Pace PRD modification - LNB voltage OFF in standby

Most satellite receivers run too warm for their own good and mine was no exception. I had already fitted the reliability upgrade, RELKIT 2 and mounted the receiver on an open shelf, but still it felt very hot to the touch.

Pace receivers continue to supply current to the LNB, even in standby. The original reason was to protect the LNB from sudden temperature changes. Amstrad receivers and a few other makes turn the LNB supply off in standby so I could see no reason why my Pace shouldn't. Since most modern LNBs require 200 - 250mA at 13 volts, the power saving would be significant. In addition, nobody would be able to send a signal to my smart card while the receiver was "off".

A simple modification to the receiver will cause the LNB voltage to be switched to zero in standby.

ORDER "PRD LNB Volts Off" kit

With my receiver there was a significant reduction in heat from the power supply but, if you insist on keeping yours in a nice warm cabinet on top of a video recorder or, if - as with most modern houses - your room temperature is quite high, then you might also consider fitting the miniature cooling fan kit.

>I have a question for you.
>I have a Pace PRD800 and am thinking of upgrading it. (I realise that a
>newer unit would be the best way, but funds, and the fact that the
>picture quality is the best I`ve seen from satellite, dictates that it
>has to be an upgrade)
>I want to achieve 3 things.
>1. Receive Astra 1D without External ADX.

Fit an Enhanced 9.75GHz or a Universal 9.75+10.6GHz LNB to your dish.
You might also need to change the tuning limit resistor (surface mount) which I supply free on request (together with instructions) with any order. It's probably not needed however because I see you have the 2GHz tuner. Then tune each channel 250MHz higher in the menu.
If you don't want to have the hassle of making a 250+ calculation each time you retune you can fit my (19.95) Enhanced Micro instead of the 809-8661006.

>2. Receive high frequency channels, i.e. frequencies in the telecom
>band, as some newer satellites are transmitting in the 12.100 upward

You need a 22kHz tone inserter to activate Hi Band on the Universal LNB.
This is easily achieved by adding 3 resistors inside the receiver (See PRD FAQ). You can connect through pin 14 of the decoder Scart and disconnect the wire already in the decoder plug or you can simply lead the wire out through any convenient slot. This wire controls an external 22kHz tone inserter box which you can buy from me or from your local accessory shop.
Or you can buy our internal 22kHz kit which includes these resistors plus a ready-made tone board assembly.

>3. Increase the amount of channels on my receiver.
>What, in your opinion, is the best course for me to upgrade

On the PRD800 this is simply a matter of fitting the 199 channel kit comprising one IC and one surface mount resistor.

>My PRD800 has a serial no. RBLAY ZA3191xxxxx and, if I read your
>instructions correctly, was manufactured Monday 19th week 1991?

No, 1993. It goes 199(3) week (19) day (1).

>The U2 Micro chip carries the number 809-8661006
>and it has the 2GHZ tuner. Number 221-2077011

>Although I have read your PRD upgrade sheets
(above), I must confess that the
>more I read it the more I get confused as to what is and isn`t required
>to get my preferred upgrades done. There are some other factors that
>need to be taken into account.

>1. I have a d2mac decoder, which makes the use of the decoder socket difficult.

Not really. You can cut the existing wire off pin 14 and solder an extension wire to that plug pin instead. The extension wire can then be connected to your 22kHz inserter box.

>2. As I will have to change my LNB and need to insert a 22KHz tone, how
>will it affect also putting in an upgrade to control an ADX (which I
>already have) or frequency extender for Astra 1D?

You won't need the ADX. The Universal LNB will pull in just about everything.

Dear Martin.

Once again your expertise has solved my problems.
I've fitted your "miniature silent fan" in my Pace MSS300 and in the Phillips decoder, dropped the voltage with the resistors till they were just running and starting ok. The difference in running temperatures is tremendous.

Everyone who owns a CTU900 or a Pace Receiver MUST fit one of these fans.

Many thanks, especially for your patience.

Tommy O'Connor

Copyright ©1998 SatCure
Version 1.3 updated on December 18, 2000
This file may be downloaded for private and personal use but NO part of it may be published in any form without the prior permission of the author.



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