Freeview retune - poor public service transmitters deal
The Freeview retune seems to have gone very well. The helpline has been helpful, interactive video and download manuals have sorted out twenty million Freeview bits. BBC One is statistically multiplexed, giving better BBC pictures.
If you can get all the Freeview multiplexes, as many can, nothing much has changed and the channel numbers are now logical. The picture quality on FIVE has dropped by 33%, and a few BBC Interactive screens are being closed, but little changed.
However, there is a small problem if you are oneof the 8.5% of the UK's population, 5.1 million people, who will be watching a public service transmitter.
The introduction of Freeview HD means that without a Freeview HD box if you are one of the 8.5% then you will only now receive two multiplexes of channels.
The BBC multiplex, BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Three/CBBC, BBC Four/CBeebies, BBC News, BBC Parliament, a few interactive screens and a text service plus all the BBC radio stations.
The Digital 3+4 multiples has ITV1, ITV2, Channel 4, More 4, E4 and ITV2+1 and Channel 4+1.
There is a really good reason why Channel 4+1 is on this multiplex - it is a regional multiplex. And ITV2+1 is on there because it was supposed to be ITV1+1, but ITV didn't have the rights.
I think that Channel 4+1 and ITV2+1 represents a poor selection when there is a limited number of channels.
The 8.5% can get a Freeview+ box if they want to time-shift, and to any time.
Channel 4+1 and ITV2+1 must be replaced by "alternative content" channels such as Film4 and ITV3. Such channels represent a choice for viewers, time-shift channels do not.
And what happens if the 8.5% go and grab a Freeview HD DVB-T2 MPEG4 box?
They will get Channel 4 for a third time but in HD, ITV 1 again in HD, FIVE simulcast in HD and a BBC HD that simulcasts some content and time-shifts others.
This will result in a high definition choice of the same content two or three times.
Another great idea would be to swap Sky News and BBC Parliament around. BBC Parliament has never registered any viewers by BARB. The 8.5% would be much better serve by a plurality of news providers over an unwatched parliamentary channel. Sky News could be declared a "public service"!
12:34 PM West Linton
I live in West Linton , just switched to Digital and now find we can't get most of the Freeview channels. I only want Dave, been looking forward to it for don't know how long and now find I can get total rubbish like Gay Rabbit and BBC Parliament but nothing new that I might actually watch. Why is it acceptable to provide full coverage to some people but not others? And why the bizarre choice of channels? Digital.co.uk says we should have good reception and all channels from Black Hill which is 40 miles away the other side of the Pentland hills, our alternative transmitter being West Linton which I can see from the house. So what's the chances of getting transmissions from Black Hill? Total disgrace.
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Richard's: Freeview map terrain plot frequency data R&TI Service digitaluk trade DAB coverage
Richard Barber: You are predicted to have good reception from Black Hill on all six muxes from 22nd June 2011, so one week to wait.Use a group 'B' receiving aerial set for horizontal polarisation to receive Black Hill. All muxes will be transmitted at 100kW so if you can receive Mux BBCA on C46 now, you should be able to receive the other muxes when switchover completes.
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I live in a little village nearest town being Penicuik. I have a free view box and free on the other TVs. Choices still very poor. Can't get a sky dish because planning won't allow dish only place I could get reception. Free view box was a waste of money. Can't access ariel to move or tweet. Any ideas welcome
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