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Wednesday, 24 July 2013
R
R.J.Savage
6:03 PM Swansea

At my home address, SA4 9EQ I receive my digital transmissions from the Carmel transmitter at Cross Hands.I own a static caravan in llansteffan and also receive transmissions from the same transmitter, albeit from a different direction. Can you please advise me as to why I only receive a limited number of freeview channels at Llansteffan compaired with my home. Considering we at llansteffan took part in the digital trials way back in 2002 and yet we do not receive all the channels. When can we expect an update?

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Dave Lindsay
6:57 PM Carmarthen

R.J.Savage: There is a two-tier terrestrial television system in the UK. The Public Service (PSB) channels have the same degree of coverage as the former four-channel analogue network and the Commercial (COM) channels fit in where they can with inferior coverage to the PSBs.

Only the largest transmitters carry the COM channels. Of the viewers that use these transmitters a small proportion are only likely to pick up the PSBs. See here for an explanation:

Londonderry (Northern Ireland) Freeview Light transmitter | ukfree.tv - 11 years of independent, free digital TV advice

In the case of Carmel, the COM channels are half transmission power to the PSBs. This in no way means that the signal will only go half as far!

In the case of the caravan park I suggest that the fact that it's lower down and doesn't have line-of-sight to the transmitter is the reason for the difficulty of reception of its COM channels. Have a word with neighbours and see whether they can get the COM channels from Carmel.

I have assumed the location to be Sunrise Bay Caravan Park, SA33 5LP.

The aerials on the adjacent homes point to the Ferryside transmitter. It formed part of the digital pilot and for that reason carries the PSBs and COM4. Whilst it is missing COM5 and COM6, it will, if you can pick up from it, give you a few more channels. For it you will need your aerial switching to vertical.

The other possibility might be to turn your aerial to 168 degrees horizontal, this facing Huntshaw Cross. This carries BBC One South West and ITV West Country, but may give you the COMs.

If you can receive the COM channels from Huntshaw Cross and the Welsh PSBs from Ferryside then you could conceivably have an aerial on each and combine the feeds so as to get the full service and Wales regional programming.

For a list of Freeview services by PSB/COM, see:

DTG :: DTT Services by Multiplex

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