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BBC HD to switch to DVB-S2 on 6th June 2011

The BBC will switch to the higher-capacity modern modulation scheme for the BBC HD and BBC One HD channels on satellite.

The BBC will switch to the higher-capacity modern modulation sc
published on UK Free TV

The high definition (HD) television channels on satellite require a lot more bandwidth (number of bits per second) than the standard definition (SD) ones, as you might expect.

However the additional capacity required is reduced in two ways. First the MPEG-4 compression system is used (rather than MPEG-2) and generally the DVB-S2 modulation system increases the bandwidth of each satellite transponder.

Generally speaking, around nine SD television channels can be carried on a transponder in DVB-S mode, and four HD channels on one in DVB-S2 mode.

For historical reasons, the BBC's Astra 2D transponder 50 has been providing BBC One HD and BBC HD (and also ITV1 HD Merdian South) in the DVB-S mode, and this has used all the capacity on the transponder, because of the lower bitrate.

The changes

One 6th June 2011, the BBC will switch the transponder to DVB-S2. If you watch using Sky+HD, Virgin Media or Freeview HD you will not have to do anything.

If you use a branded Freesat box (or TV set), you may need to put it into stand-by mode for 30 seconds on 6th June. If that doesn't work, perform a 'first time installation'.

Update: Some Panasonic Freesat boxes are unable to deal with the change - see comments below

If you are using a unbranded Freesat box, you may find that you also have to do a 'first time installation' to get the channels back.

Some older satellite equipment will not support DVB-S2. If you can't watch Channel 4 HD, then you will no longer be able to watch the BBC HD channels.

Sky HD, Freesat HD EPG issues

Currently BBC One HD cannot automatically replace BBC One in the Sky EPG at position 101, because there are 15 regional versions of BBC One, and only a single BBC One HD 'stream' on the satellite.

BBC Two carries four regions for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. For a BBC TWO HD to appear in the Sky EPG at position 102, the BBC would need to provide four versions of BBC TWO HD.

All the other BBC channels are national, and have no regional components. BBC Three timeshares with CBBC, BBC FOUR timeshares with CBeebies, plus there is BBC News, BBC Parliament and BBC Alba.

The extra capacity found by moving to DVB-S2 could allow the BBC to provide BBC Three, BBC Four, CBeebies and CBBC channel in HD, and these could be provided in the "usual" EPG slots for Sky HD and Freesat HD users, which would put them on the lower numbered channels nearer the top of the guide.

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Wednesday, 8 June 2011
Ian Batty
10:45 AM

Hi, I'm also having trouble with the new BBC HD. I've got a Pioneer KRP-500A (the one with the separate media box)

It picks up C4 HD, so I am pretty sure it supports DVB-S2 (backed up by the documentation) but when I do a full rescan I don't get any stations on Transponder 10847 (which is the one containing the BBC channels)

Any clues?

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Ian Batty's 1 post GB flag

11:12 AM

Hi NottsUK
Away at moment will look at Other Satellites and if there, they might be, on my return will delete and rescan Freesat.
Do not wish to go back to factory setting as this would mean a lot of work resetting up.
Why on earth did the BBC rock the boat, someone should be looking for a new job.

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David's 306 posts GB flag

11:39 AM

Ian Batty: Checking the KRP-500A manual on the Pioneer web site, it seems as though you can edit a satellite transponder. Check the information on pages 33 to 34. If you select manual setting put in a Frequency 10847, Polarization Vertical and Symbol Rate 23000. It shows that you can select a symbol rate of 22000 or 27500 or type in one using the 0 to 9 buttons.

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NottsUK's 345 posts GB flag
2:36 PM

Just carried out an auto scan on my Panasonic and all works ok again. The Panasonic DVD/Blue Ray recorder player sorted itself out

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Rong's 1 post GB flag

6:01 PM

Rong: I am pleased to hear that.

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Briantist's 38,915 posts GB flag
Thursday, 9 June 2011
3:29 PM

panny 850 ok after initialising

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paul's 7 posts GB flag
Friday, 10 June 2011

8:12 AM

paul: That's good to know.

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Briantist's 38,915 posts GB flag
8:23 PM

Panasonic DMR-XS350EB - BBCHD lost channels.
Auto scan didn't work nor did default settings nor did turning it off at the mains but thankfully shipping condition did. Go to system update, then initialize, then shipping condition, then turn the box off. When you switch back on all should be well but you'll have to reset your timed prog settings. Thanks for the agro BBC try telling us next time.

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Steve's 1 post GB flag
Graeme Hartley
9:42 PM

I have a Panasonic P46G20B and Panasonic Blu-ray BS750. I have lost BBC HD channels but have Channel 4HD. I have tried every permutation of set-up, shipping condition and retune with no success. Any other thoughts?

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Graeme Hartley's 2 posts GB flag
Saturday, 11 June 2011
andy duncan
6:57 AM

my daughter lives in notting hill in london. for some reason she has lost channels itv1 & channel 4. a full auto scan did not restore them. any ideas why this may have happened and how to get them back? cheers.

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andy duncan's 1 post GB flag
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