Sudbury transmitter group switchover "ends".
Viewers in Essex and parts of Suffolk will have no analogue television from Wednesday 20th July 2011. Unless you use cable or satellite to watch television, if you don't use a Freeview box or set, your screen will be blank.
Most people need only perform a "full retune" on their Freeview box or TV, but it would be impossible with 460,700 homes covered by the transmitters, for no-one to have a problem.
From Wednesday 20th July 2011 you MUST have a digital television device to watch TV. If you do not have a digital receiver, from Wednesday will have a blank screen.
Do not expect a terrestrial television service from midnight until 6am - or a late as lunchtime on relay transmitters.
Switchover help schemeIf you are over 75, get (or could get) Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance, Constant Attendance Allowance or mobility supplement; or have lived in a care home for six months or more; or are registered blind or partially sighted and need assistance, please see The Switchover Help Scheme.
Cable and satelliteCable (Virgin Media) and satellite (Sky, Freesat, fSfS) viewers are not affected by the changes. Remember, however, that you may be using analogue TV to watch on a second or third set and it might need a Freeview box.
Existing "full" Freeview usersIf you already use Freeview, and can receive all the channels now, check your TV or box is not listed here - TVs and boxes that do not support the 8k-mode. If it is, you will need a new Freeview box.
If you are not on the list, you should scan your box from around 6am.
When you now rescan, you MUST do a "first time installation" or "factory reset" scan (sometimes called "shipping state"), not a simple "add channels". Do the procedure you did on September 30th 2009.
If you can't recall what this was, please see generic clear and rescan procedure.
If you scanned during the first phase of switchover on Wednesday 6th July 2011 - you will have to do it again on Wednesday 20th July 2011.
Restrictions on SDN, Arqiva A and Arqiva B multiplexesThe SDN multiplex will temporarily operate on channel 49 (at 14kW ERP) from the first stage of Sudbury's switchover until mid-2012. Arqiva A will remain on its pre-switchover channel (C54) from switchover until mid-2012. Arqiva B will remain on its pre-switchover channel (C50+) until late 2011, and then temporarily move to channel 63 (at 2.2kW ERP), before adopting its final allocation of channel 56 during mid-2012.
Using Freeview with Windows VistaPlease see Switch over and PC-based systems because you need some updates for your system to work.
Boosters and amplifiersIf you live close to the transmitter, you may have to disconnect any "boosters" from your aerial system. The new, more powerful digital signals may overload any amplifiers and result in no reception! When looking for them include a check for distribution amplifiers, loft boxes, set back amplifiers, bypass Amplifiers, hidden masthead amps in a loft space and any dodgy active splitters.
Homes without Freeview now have Freeview LightIf you had no Freeview service before, you will have the BBC channels digitally from Wednesday 6th July 2011. This is a single multiplex of the BBC channels (radio, television and text) for most people.
However, if you were on the fringes of reception from one of the main Freeview transmitters, you will now get all the Freeview channels.
If you didn't get this limited Freeview service on 1st June 2011 then you may need a new aerial.
If you are served by a public service (relay) transmitter - Felixstowe, Ipswich Stoke, Somersham, Wivenhoe Park or Woodbridge relay - you now need, from lunchtime on 15th June 2011 to rescan, and you will get a second Multiplex with ITV 1, ITV 2, ITV 1 +1, Channel 4, Channel 5, Channel 4+1, E4 and More4. And that's your lot if you have a standard Freeview receiver, see Freeview retune - poor public service transmitters.
In addition there are three new Freeview Light transmitters at Burnham on Crouch, Clacton, Rouncefall.
You may wish to install Freesat for more channels, see Compare Freeview Light and Freesat TV.
Everyone who has digital-only terrestrial TV now has the ability to receive Freeview HD, see below.
Digital regional overlapThe old analogue TV signals provided lots of nations and regions for the public service channels, and these have large areas of overlap.
The old low power digital TV signals were at very low levels and reception of signals from more than one transmitter was a rare event.
All Freeview boxes automatically scan the available broadcast frequencies looking for channels, and they do this from C21 to C69. Most older Freeview boxes will, if a duplicate version of a channel is found whilst scanning, such as another BBC One region, placed it in the 800-899 channel range.
Some of the latest Freeview boxes will pick the strongest signals for the "primary" number positions, and some will detect the different regions providing a choice when you perform a "scan for channels".
The 800-899 is easy to access by pressing CH- from 1, and in most programme guides is just a single scroll up.
Freeview HDFreeview HD will start on Wednesday 20th July 2011 from Sudbury and all the relay transmitters. You will need a Freeview HD - DVB-T2 receiver to watch the channels. An HD TV set with Freeview is not enough.
the headline: Sudbury transmitter group switchover "ends".
is not quite accurate, as there is a retune in November, and yet more changes next year in June 2012! when maybe we will get all of the channels they said we would get on 20th July 2011 !
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Steve Williams: That's why "ends" is in quote marks. Yes, the commercial multiplexes are often delayed as they have to have new frequencies allocated, which are often in use elsewhere.
Sudbury can't start using the channels ultimately allocated, because they're in use at Dover (BBC Two analogue and two low-power multiplexes). Dover BBC Two would cause a lot of interference to the multiplex using this frequency, and Sudbury high-power services would damage the two low-power ones at Dover, so you have to wait until after Dover switches over next June.
In the case of the change in November, Sudbury ArqB is currently using a frequency that will be needed by Tacolneston from 23 November, and so it takes over the one freed by Tacolneston on 9 November.
The problem mostly doesn't arise for the PSB multiplexes as they are generally taking over three of the four analogue frequencies, which are usually clear of interference for a large enough distance, because of the original analogue plans and the way that low-power digital was fitted around that.
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