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Thursday, 27 January 2011
8:02 PM

Recently we got the freesat box with HD chanells. We do not get Five usa or Fiver that are free on freeview or Sky FTA, is a way that we could get them on Freesat. Thanks

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A.Dimitropoulos's 4 posts GB flag
A.Dimitropoulos's: mapA's Freeview map terrainA's terrain plot wavesA's frequency data A's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Les Nicol

8:42 PM

A. Dimitropoukos - You wont' get Five USA or Fiver on "Freesat" as these channels are locked to a SKY contract at this time. They are available on Freeview as SKY is a partner on that platform. Depending on the "Freesat" receiver you have you might be able to switch options to non Freesat mode which will you to receive all FTA - Free to Air channels. The receivers handbook should show how to do this.

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Les Nicol's 991 posts GB flag
Friday, 28 January 2011
5:59 PM

I didn't even know that such a thing existed (non-Freesat mode on Freesat boxes).

Would this mean you can watch all free-to-air channels (e.g. GOLD), or is that further restricted to sky customers??

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Richard's 20 posts GB flag
Richard's: mapR's Freeview map terrainR's terrain plot wavesR's frequency data R's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Des Collier

7:10 PM

You can also buy non freesat fta receivers,i think MAPLINS sell them,but can't say for definite.

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Des Collier's 171 posts GB flag

9:45 PM

hi radio time on freeview teletext

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jamesbonnd's 49 posts GB flag
Saturday, 29 January 2011
3:33 AM

Advice please. I live in a large block of flats in a Freeview shadow. With switchover impending the site freeholder installed a communal satellite dish for "sky". I recently bought a Grundig Freesat SD box after reading in the freesat faq that I could receive the main terrestrial channels including Channel 4 and Film 4. Indeed the Program Guide includes these channels, but on selecting them I get "no signal", although sometimes there is an intial snippet of sound, and once, late at night I got some jerky still frames on channel 4. I have tried adding the channels as non-freesat channels to no avail as there seems to be no signal from the signal strength bar, although the set up signal strength is around 65%, and manually adding other channels shows nearly 100% strength. The site freeholder is generally hard to get hold of, and I have no access to or control of the satellite dish or LNBs. I am confused as to whether my box is faulty, obsolete (though I bought it from Curry's this Xmas), or whether there is anything I can actually do to receive Channel 4 and Film 4. (I can get channel 4+1). The Box is a Grundig GUFSATO2SD. The problematic channels seem to all be at Astra 2D 28.2 E 10714 H 22000 5/6, although I am only guessing that this is where Freesat is looking. I have tried switching off my wireless telephone and wireless broadband router but it makes no difference. I have tried using both LNB wall points and changing the drop cable. A possible irrelevence: there seems to be a closeby transmitter of some kind which broadcast a short burst of beeps at quarter hourly intervals which cut across FM radio - particularly radio 4 - and are also audible in DAB radio to a much lesser degree. Is it possible this or something else, e.g. a taxi company transmitter, say, is knocking out just this particular group of channels. I seem to be able to get everything except Channel 4 and Film 4.
Can I amplify the signal between the wall socket and the set top box?

Unfortunately freeview is not an option in this part of Cheltenham, and I don't really want to have to buy a second hand sky box and pay Murdoch £30 for a card everytime BSkyB decides to change their encryption.

Why is channel 4 different to other channels?

Thanks for any pointers.

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David's 1 post GB flag
Mike Dimmick

6:11 PM

David: if you're having trouble with Freesat you will have exactly the same trouble with the FTA channels with Sky. The easiest thing to do is to ask a neighbour who has a working Sky or Freesat box to check whether they get the channels you're missing. If they can, see if they will let you temporarily connect their box in your flat. That will indicate whether it's your box or the wiring.

Having problems with the lowest frequency is unusual. Usually the highest frequencies are the problem, as signals travel less well the higher the frequency is. It might indicate that the satellite and terrestrial signals are carried on the same cable from the head-end and split at your wall socket, and the filter to separate them again is cutting off at too high a frequency.

The intermittent interference is probably your mobile phone. Keep it well away from your TV, radio, set-top box, and any wiring. This could still be the cause of your problem: mobile phone signals are very close to the upper end of terrestrial TV frequencies and the lower end of satellite intermediate frequencies.

The LNB shifts down the satellite signals from the broadcast frequency (10714 MHz to 10936 MHz, for Astra 2D) to 964 - 1186 MHz. This is the centre frequency, bandwidth is 27 MHz so the C4 transponder covers about 10700 to 10727 MHz when broadcast, and 950 to 977 MHz on the dish-to-box cable. Terrestrial signals are anywhere from 470 to 854 MHz. The normal GSM frequency ranges for the '900 MHz' band are from 880 to 914.8 MHz, phone to tower, and 925.2 to 959.8 MHz, tower to phone. It's possible that there's a mobile phone tower nearby that uses the upper end of the frequency range, and that the cabling is somehow picking this up.

If you got good analogue terrestrial reception before, Freeview should be strong enough after switchover. However, the master aerial distribution equipment may well need to be replaced or retuned depending on exactly where you are, and therefore whther the local transmitter is using different frequencies after switchover, and how much signal distortion it introduces.

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Mike Dimmick's 2,486 posts GB flag
Mike's: mapM's Freeview map terrainM's terrain plot wavesM's frequency data M's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Monday, 31 January 2011
4:26 PM

A very comprehensive reply, it warms my heart to know that there are still people who know what they are talking about :-)

David, you've done all the right things so far, but considering you are in a block of flats try and find out if maybe your neighbour has his cordless phone or wi-fi router just the other side of the wall where your TV is.

Firstly ask your neighbours to find out if it's just you, and like David said if your neighbour has no problems try swapping boxes to see if the problem swaps.

The nearby transmitter shouldn't be interfering with anything, if you are sure the interference isn't more local, for instance your mobile, report the interference to ofcom. If the interference is predictable, every 15mins like you say, then that suggests it isn't mobile phone interference.

Page of interest, radio society beacons that TX every 15mins: Radio propagation beacon - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Some of theses are using frequencies too close for comfort.

Wireless alarm (pir) and smoke detector systems' sensors also TX an "alive" data packet every 15mins to their control panel. Has your building got those? (CF828ES)

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Spencer's 18 posts GB flag

6:40 PM

Richard: No, of course you can't watch encrypted channels without a subscription.

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Briantist's 38,915 posts GB flag

6:44 PM

Des Collier: Other places for non-branded generic free satellite receivers are B&Q and Lidl.

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Briantist's 38,915 posts GB flag
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