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Wednesday, 11 January 2012
3:07 PM


I have just recently moved to Clapton E5, and I my set top box broke in the move. I have set my tv up with just an aerial and I can only receive channel 5 anywhere in the house. Is there any point in me buying a new set top box if I can't receive signal now? Will having a set top box enhance the signal or will I have to get an aerial set up on the exterior of the house? Many thanks!

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Hannah's 1 post GB flag
Mike Dimmick

6:09 PM

Hannah: If the TV doesn't have a digital tuner built in, you will need a new set-top box before switchover happens in April. If you could previously get ITV2, BBC Three or similar on the TV itself, more than just BBC One, Two, ITV1, C4 and C5, it has a digital tuner.

Only getting Channel 5 is unusual. Have you retuned your TV's analogue tuner since moving? Some apartment blocks with a distribution system - often called a Master Antenna TV system - use transposers to reduce ghosting problems which occur when the direct signal from the transmitter is pretty strong, but not strong enough to use directly. The transposer puts the signal from the wall socket on a different frequency from the one broadcast from the transmitter. That might mean that your TV would need to be tuned to different frequencies than the ones listed at the Crystal Palace web page.

It's also possible that you were using a relay transmitter before; in this case, again you would need to retune the TV's analogue tuner.

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Mike Dimmick's 2,486 posts GB flag
Sunday, 29 January 2012
2:07 PM

2 digital tv's, pictures freeze, pixelating and on accasions have lost signal totally. TV aerial people have been, retuned to another supposedly stonger signal, supplied booster but still pixelating, says they use the the best cable (which is very stiff, driving me mad, please can someone advise me

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Trish's 1 post GB flag

8:10 PM

Trish: As your question is one involving reception then its impossible for anyone to offer assistance unless your location (pref: post code) is known, as that would then enable checking of the signal strengths expected wherever you might be located, plus any other advice that may be of help with your problem.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB flag
Monday, 30 January 2012
Monday, 6 February 2012
Mick Bull
4:01 PM

When ever my granddaughter visits, we have problems with freeview receptionon all televisions in the house. We have worked out it is when she is using her BLACKBERRY mobile phone.
Can we do anything to stop this interference.

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Mick Bull's 1 post GB flag
Dave Lindsay

4:10 PM

Mick Bull: Ensure that she leaves the Blackberry along with her shoes on the way in.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB flag
Mike Dimmick

5:32 PM

Mick Bull: It may be that the cable is relatively old and of the 'low-loss coax' type. This traditional type of cable isn't actually very low-loss, and it picks up a lot of interference.

It's now recommended that systems use 'satellite-grade' cable such as Webro WF100, which has a dense copper braid over copper foil screening. These are much less likely to pick up interference.

The aerial itself can help - an older cheap aerial typically wasn't matched to the cable properly. The signal on the cable is supposed to be 'unbalanced', but the aerial elements are balanced. If connected directly, the cable ('feeder') picks up interference. To convert from one to the other, the aerial should include a balun (balanced-to-unbalanced transformer). This can be a printed circuit or a few turns of wire, and is pretty cheap, but the cheapest aerials didn't include them. These aerials are often known as 'contract' types as they were usually bulk-bought for fitting on new housing estates, but some installers would also use them for individual jobs.

A balun, and a feeder pickup test, are now required to pass the CAI Benchmark test, so they are usually included in new aerials.

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Mike Dimmick's 2,486 posts GB flag
Steve P

5:46 PM

Mick Bull - put the blackberry in a biscuit tin.

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Steve P's 1,173 posts GB flag

6:49 PM

mike bull,report it to ofcom.

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sharealam's 226 posts GB flag
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