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BBC satellite services moving to Astra 1N on 24th February 2012

Between 3am and 5am on 24th February 2012 the BBC will be moving all their satellite television services from the Astra 2D satellite, which is being decommissioned.

Between 3am and 5am on 24th February 2012 the BBC will be movin
published on UK Free TV

As Astra 1N will be providing the services on the same frequencies with the same parameters, no action will need to be taken by Sky and Freesat viewers, but any programmes being recorded by Sky+ or Freesat+ devices during this period will be disrupted.

The following services are affected:

Details from BBC - About the BBC: Changes to BBC services on satellite on 24th February 2012.

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Tuesday, 21 February 2012
11:54 AM

Hi andyboy is that Freeview only thanks

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andy's 16 posts GB flag
andy's: ...

12:03 PM

will wee get our regional BBC1 in hd also

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Conor's 60 posts GB flag

12:10 PM

Briantist: I believe all the other channels have already moved onto Astra 1N, so when the BBC channels move over, Astra 2D will be empty. Where will Astra be moving 2D to when its empty?

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NottsUK's 345 posts GB flag
Mike Dimmick

2:10 PM

andy: Freeview is *not* affected by this change. Programmes are sent to the transmitters by fibre-optic cable, with a satellite fallback from a completely different satellite cluster (a different part of the sky).

Cable head-ends might be fed by terrestrial or satellite signals, or directly by the broadcasters, I'm not sure which.

Conor: BBC One Nations variants in HD (i.e. Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland) will be coming later this year, but no date is yet set.

NottsUK: That depends on whether it can actually be repurposed for anything else. The main problem is that 2D can *only* offer a spot beam footprint, it can't offer a Europe-wide service, while 1N has Europe-wide dishes as well as the spot beam. The most likely use would be feeds of some sort, or broadband - anything that can cope with a transponder failing at short notice!

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Mike Dimmick's 2,486 posts GB flag
Trevor Harris

3:28 PM


The BBC seems to have been very quite about regional variations in HD. We must remember that it took the BBC years to even go widescreen on local programs. It is quite unacceptable to keep having to switch to SD to watch local news. In any case BBC is not planning to make the news in HD till 2013. Thank goodness for Sky News HD.

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Trevor Harris's 367 posts GB flag

8:36 PM

What will happen with Windows 7's Media Centre centre and using DVB-S2 tuner cards? Because Windows 7 was released before Astra 1N even existed, it will not recognise Astra 1N's existance, so therefore no more FTA UK channels via satellite for Windows Media Centre viewers!

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Josh's 97 posts GB flag
Mike Dimmick

11:40 PM

Josh: The satellite is a relatively dumb relay device. It just transposes the signals sent up to it on a specific uplink frequency to a specific downlink frequency. Replacing one transponder with another is merely a case of sending a command to 2D to turn the old transponder off, and one to 1N to turn the new transponder on. Receiving equipment won't be able to tell the difference, because it's the same signal sent from the same uplink station.

Moving to 1N does *not* imply changing to DVB-S2. Channel 5 have been transmitting on 1N using DVB-S since before Christmas. You can generally expect SD channels to remain on DVB-S, for the widest possible compatibility, with HD channels generally moving to DVB-S2 transponders for the greater capacity. However, if a broadcaster doesn't have enough HD services to fill an -S2 transponder, they'll leave it DVB-S and fill it up with SD services.

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Mike Dimmick's 2,486 posts GB flag
Wednesday, 22 February 2012
4:00 PM


For Sky to have News HD they needed to equip one studio to transmit the one channel to the entirety of the UK using 1/5 of a transponder.

For the BBC they would need to equip every regional studio (how many do they have now?) with HD equipment and use (I guess) 3-4 transponders to provide the service.

It was the same with widescreen - there is the small matter of cost - it was the same with widescreen.

And for news - what does widescreen / HD / 3D really matter? Is the news different in HD?

The BBC has to absorb the cost with no increases in license fee over the next years - Sky can charge extra for HD and use HD (and 3D for that matter) as an USP to get more people to subscribe for £££.

Of course, if the BBC stopped regional programming then they could easily offer would be the same as Sky...


I'm using Windows Media Center 7 with DVB-S2 without any problems - I did have to change my receiver PCI card when the BBC changed from DVB-S to S2 though, but other than tthat I've had no problems - just needed to do a manual search on the associated transponders to pick up BBC1 HD and BBC HD.

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Peter's 18 posts GB flag
Peter's: mapP's Freeview map terrainP's terrain plot wavesP's frequency data P's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Thursday, 23 February 2012
7:38 PM

Hi, I'm Helmut and my location is in Austria near Salzburg. Since 2003 when BBC went to the clear in I'm watching all its programs with great passion using a 1,5m dish. After ITV's transition to Astra 1N I realized a tremendous increase in signal. From my point of view 1N is not using a spot beam as prev. Astra 2D did. I'm assuming same all the BBC services are improving their signal after the change over... How can responsibility be taken for any increase of coverage in mainland Europe legally?

Thanks Helmut

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Helmut's 1 post AT flag
Friday, 24 February 2012
2:11 PM

can we pick this astra 1N sat in cyprus so we can get the bbc chanels back thanks Dave

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Dave's 1 post CY flag
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