iDirect Satellite Internet / Intranet Systems and Services
iDirect is not very well known in the residential and small business market for several reasons, however, it is one of the most powerful, capable and feature-packed satellite internet solution on the market today! iDirect equipment and services are offered by a variety of dealers around the World, however, Montana Satellite Services & Montana Satellite Supply are one of the only iDirect equipment and service providers and resellers who cater to residential, home-office, and small business applications! Most of the iDirect service providers out there are after the larger contracts, 40 accounts or more! We work with several different iDirect Network Operation Centers directly in order to provide some of the lowest pricing and best support on the planet!
Applications: We usually recommend iDirect when someone contacts us for good, reliable VoIP (Phone Service) at a remote site! We also recommend it for VPN and other bandwidth intense applications where HughesNet and Viasat fall short! Most of the mobile satellite internet systems on the market today are powered by the iDirect platform as well! If you have a rural business, man camp, dude ranch, construction site, resort, or community, etc. where you want to provide internet access to 20, 50, 300 + people, then iDirect is probably the best solution for you for that as well! iDirect offers the highest uptime and reliability of any satellite internet service provider out there! The larger antennas and transmitters used with most iDirect equipment configurations provide connectivity even during bad weather when other satellite internet services would be offline!
Speeds: We offer iDirect service plans that vary in speed from 64k x 64k up to 20Mbps x 5Mbps. Many of our iDirect customers are using a 512k x 128k plan at anywhere from $180 – $280+ per month just to provide reliable VoIP phone service that they can count on to be there when they need it since the other satellite internet solutions out there like HughesNet and Viasat simply do not offer reliable VoIP services! We also offer iDirect service for SCADA and other M2M (Machine-to-Machine) applications at are only using 64k x 64k service plans for <$80 per month! We offer larger, faster plans for around $2000 – $3000 or so per month that can support 300+ concurrent users as well and even larger plans that can support the broadcast of a live sporting event in HD quality!
Service Plans/Contention Ratios: iDirect service isn’t all about speeds! What if I told you that we offer a monthly service plan that offers 1mb x 200k speeds for around $180 per month, but that we also offer a 1mb x 200k plan that is $1800 per month? It’s true! On the iDirect platform, speed may not be your biggest concern! With the iDirect platform, the contention ratio can be a much more important factor and can determine service plan pricing more than speeds do typically! So what is contention? Imagine there is a garden hose sized pipe connecting your satellite modem to the internet. Now imagine that you are using a garden hose to provide water to 1 RV. That would be a 1:1 contention. Now imagine you had T’s in the hose and there were 5 RV’s using that one hose for water! That would be a 5:1 contention. Needless to say, the 1:1 contention with 1 user is going to handle much more volume and pressure! The same applies to satellite internet! There is a “pipe” that the information travels on between the satellite modem and the internet. Some companies, like HughesNet crap 400 – 700 or more people into that pipe to share the bandwidth, while companies like iDirect only allow 60, or 40, or even 20, or 10 people to use that same pipe. A 1:1 contention can broadcast a live sports event or maybe even support 300 – 500 concurrent uses for internet/intranet access, while a 60:1 contention will start slowing down after 3 or 4 concurrent users and will only support a few simultaneous applications! As a result, the higher the contention, the less expensive the plan is since more people are using it and contributing to footing the bill for that pipe! That’s how HughesNet and Viasat can offer internet access for $60 – $90+ per month but it’s also why HughesNet and Viast do not do well at supporting things like VoIP, VPN, etc. and it’s also why the speeds change so much at different times of the day over those networks depending on how many other users are online at the same time! For example, our most popular iDirect Contention is probably 10:1 or 15:1 for a VOIP line. You can save money by getting a 15:1 plan over a 10:1 plan, but when the network is busy, your phone might not work as well on a pipe that has 14 other people using it than a pipe that only has 9 other people using it! So, speed isn’t everything and it’s VERY IMPORTANT to consider the contention ratio of your monthly service plan as it can have a drastic effect on your capabilities and cost per month!
Service Providers: We work with many different iDirect service providers that seem to cater better to a specific application and use than others! For example, there are some that offer 24/7 support, others who don’t! There are some who allow month-to-month service without contract or commitment, and others who don’t! There are some that offer coverage in most of Canada and some who don’t! There are some that offer unlimited data plans and others who limit your data and bill for overages! There are some that cater to emergency services or special applications or support VPN better than others. We have service providers that have highly secured network operations centers that provide internet and intranet access and service to banks, government agencies, our military, homeland security and other organizations that need it!
Our job is to help you find the best service plan, service provider, and equipment solution for your needs!
Capabilities: iDirect is known for its’ ability to properly support VoIP (voice/telephone over Internet), VPN (virtual private networking), RDP (Remote Desktop) and other bandwidth intense applications that others such as HughesNet and Viasat struggle with! iDirect is also a powerhouse for providing internet access to many concurrent users at once at a mine, oil rig, construction site, and other remote businesses, facilities, and sites! iDirect also offers some of the lowest latency (delay) in the industry at around 600ms compared to other satellite-based solutions that are suffering from 800ms – 1200ms latency!
Options/Configurations: Most iDirect systems require 3 basic components that are available in a variety of types, sizes, and configurations! Each modem, antenna, transmitter, and LNB type and size offers a slightly different capability or reliability and our recommendations to you would depend on many factors including the site location, speeds requested, level of reliability, and more! For example, an X1, 4-watt, 1.0m system is the most affordable iDirect equipment configuration and it’s typically used in SCADA or M2M applications, however, X1 modems are limited to 512k upload speeds and a 4-watt 1.0m antenna has a smaller satellite footprint/coverage area and decreased reliability factor during bad weather than say 6-watt, 1.2m configuration. The X3 and X5 modems support faster speeds and the X5 is mobile capable so it is commonly used for mobile applications with .84m or .98m antennas typically! There are satellite dish antennas available that are meant to handle high-winds and other others that are not! So, it’s very important to go over your needs and pick the right equipment configuration for your application for sure!
- iDirect Satellite Modem/Router (IDU) which is installed inside or in a dry place and provides ethernet connectivity to your device(s).
- Models available include: X1, X3, X5, and the newest X7 satellite modem/router
- iDirect Satellite Dish/Antennas
- Sizes available include: .84m, .98m, 1.0m, 1.2m, 1.8m, 2.4m and 3.8m and more! Types Available: Class I & II and HD
- iDirect Transmitter/LNB assembly which is the part on the dish that sends and receives the data
- Transmitter options include: 4-watt, 6-watt, 8-watt, 12-watt and higher. LNB options include DRO & PLL
Fixed/Portable/Mobile Applications: The iDirect platform and services are available in fixed, portable, mobile-automatic and fly-away equipment configurations! We offer temporary and permanent mounts and mounting solutions as well as custom mounting options for iDirect equipment and services! We also offer equipment solutions from RVDataSat, Winegard, General Dynamics, Virgin, AVL, and iNetVu that go up and lock onto the satellite and give you internet access at the touch of a button! Our fly-away equipment solutions can be shipped directly to a site or event and be quickly set up and brought online within minutes!
Installation: We (Montana Satellite Services / Montana Satellite Supply) offer installation and support services in our local service areas and around the World! Contact us at (888) 608-2299 or at [email protected] for a quote if you wish to have us do so! We can also work with our customers directly to assist them with self-installation and self-maintenance options as well! We can ship the iDirect Satellite Modem/Router to you pre-programmed and ready to connect once you have the antenna pointed to the satellite and have verified the connection with the network operations center!
- Mounts: Most iDirect 1.2m antennas which are the most common size for use in the Continental US, require either a 2″ or 2 1/2″ schedule 40 steel ground pole mount for the antenna to slide down onto for permanent installation. The size required actually depends on the type of antenna we recommend to you, but most require a 2 1/2″ schedule 40 steel mount now-days! We usually get a 9 foot piece of pipe and bury it 4 feet in the ground in approx. 280 – 320 pounds of concrete! Make sure you put something through the pipe or weld something onto it so that it can’t spin in the concrete once it sets up! We also offer flat non-pen mounts that can be used on a stable flat surface and are secured using ballast such as concrete blocks, etc. We offer a ridge-roof version of these mounts that works on a peaked roof as well! We also have attached wall mount and roof mount options as well! Check out www.montanasatellitesupply.com for the different mounts that we offer!
- Cabling: iDirect VSAT Systems typically use a good quality RG6 or RG6 coaxial cable between the satellite dish and the modem/router! Two cables or a dual cable run are required, one for Rx (receive) and one for Tx (transmit) RG6 is commonly used for cable runs up to 150′ in length, while RG11 will need to be used for longer 200′ – 300′ runs!
- Pointing: While there is a signal meter built into the user-interface of the iDirect modems, it is handy to have a satellite signal meter such as an Allied XR-3 or a SatBuddy, Birdog, etc. to help you get the antenna pointed. Once you have found the satellite and have a green Rx light on the modem you must make a call to the network operations center to peak the antenna and verify connectivity before they will bring your system online! So you will need a landline, cellular or satellite phone service at the dish in order to make that happen! This call can take anywhere from 10 – 15 minutes to an hour or so depending on the service provider and your pointing/adjusting abilities!
- Accessories: If you are connecting more than one device to your iDirect system, you will need a wired or wireless router or access point, and/or switch, hub, etc.. Most service plans provide 1 IP address, but you can get additional if necessary! ($$) We also offer satellite dish covers to prevent snow and ice from blocking your signal, and we also offer heated satellite dishes that do a bit better job than a cover at preventing snow and ice buildup on the antenna! If you feel this could be an issue for you, please contact us for more information!
Why choose Montana Satellite?
We can save you $$: We have people call us all the time that are/were spending way too much for a low contention plan that they really didn’t even need for their application! We are usually able to save them tens, hundreds and in some cases even thousands of dollars on service by recommending the right service plan and contention for their needs! Example 1: There were a bunch of windmill farms around the country that were sold service from a Nation-wide company at $320 or so per month! They contacted us and we were able to save one local windmill farm over 50% per month by switching them to a $150 plan that does everything they needed to do! Example 2: A resort north of Cabo was paying over $2200 a month to provide internet access to maybe 60 concurrent users! We were able to find them a $1200 monthly plan that does everything they needed it to do! Our working relationship with several different iDirect service providers allows us to recommend the best plan, pricing and provider for YOUR needs! And even after we do so, we will be paying attention to the market, the providers and the plans and recommend any changes to you that we feel may benefit you including changing plans or providers from one iDirect service provider to another using your same universal Ku-band equipment! I don’t know of any iDirect service providers or resellers out there that would say, “Hey, thanks for being our customer, but you could save $50 a month if you switched to our competition!” We don’t work for them, we work for YOU, so we have YOUR back, and we will tell you if that’s the case because we prefer happy customers! Also, it doesn’t cost you any more to go through us to find and sign up for service, you’re still billed by the service provider, and any commissions or referral fees that we make are paid to us out of their side, not yours! We do not markup and resell service like most other iDirect resellers out there!
Many Service Plans & Providers to choose from: You will rarely find anyone listing/advertising monthly service plans and pricing for the iDirect platform, and if you do, you should probably avoid them because they might push you into a standard plan that they offer that could cost you 10, 20, even 50% or so more per month! We offer hundreds of different service plans and contention ratios via several different service providers, so we can help you choose the best service provider, speed and contention for your needs and budget!
Equipment quality and options: iDirect service providers use and require iDirect modems, however, the modems can be used with a variety of different brands and models of transmitters, LNB’s and satellite dish antennas on the market! Many equipment and service providers offer cheap equipment to get you tied to a contract because most of them make their money on service! While you might consider that an advantage in some cases, it’s not at all an advantage when you have to replace a flimsy antenna after just a few years of service or when an expensive transmitter or LNB fails on you and leaves you hanging! Some service providers offer discounts on equipment because they LOCK the satellite modems to their network, so if you ever find a better, more affordable iDirect service provider and plan, it’s hard and sometimes impossible to escape and you may even have to purchase a new satellite modem in order to simply switch to a different iDirect service provider! The equipment that we offer is high-quality at a fair price and we don’t lock anything! In fact, we will actually pay attention to the market, providers, and plans and recommend any changes to you that we feel may benefit you including changing plans or providers from one iDirect service provider to another using your same universal Ku-band equipment!
Support: While we do not officially offer 24/7 Support, we do go out of our way to return calls, texts, and emails in the evenings, on weekends and even on holidays! Also, most of our equipment and service providers offer their own support as well once we get you signed up with them in the event that you are unable to contact us!
We encourage you to contact us prior to ordering to ensure you have the right equipment for your needs! We can also offer custom estimates and shipping quotes if you contact us! Please only use these links to purchase if we have advised you to do so: