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Switchover completes for non-coastal West Sussex

If you live in the Midhurst transmitter area (West Sussex, above the South Downs), you will need to take action on Wednesday morning as high power digital television services bring digital and high definition television to everyone.

If you live in the Midhurst transmitter area (West Sussex, abov
published on UK Free TV
Tonight, 14th March 2012, the next switchover of 2012 will see the number of homes with digital-only terrestrial reception in the UK goes up by 99,400 from 67.4% to 67.8%.

Viewers in the West Sussex, above the South Downs who use the Midhurst transmitter (and 2 relay transmitters) will have no analogue television from Wednesday 14th March 2012. 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 99,400 homes covered by the transmitters, for no-one to have a problem.

From Wednesday 14th March 2012 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 9am on relay transmitters (see below for timetable).

You will be served by the Freeview HD service from today, but please see this six-point checklist to ensure you really are watching in high definition: Are you really watching free TV in high definition?

Low power on ArqA and ArqB Multiplex for some months

The ArqB multiplex will, until 25 April 2012, be restricted to 1,000W (full power will be 10,000W)

The ArqA multiplex will, until 20 June 2012 may have a reactive power restriction to 5,000W (full power will be 10,000W).

Switchover help scheme

If 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 satellite

Cable (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 users

If 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 "national retune day", September 30th 2009, see Freeview Retune - list of manuals.

If you can't recall the procedure or find the manual, please see generic clear and rescan procedure.

If you scanned during the first phase of switchover on Wednesday 29th February 2012 - you will have to do it again on Wednesday 14th March 2012.

Using Freeview with Windows Vista

Please see Switch over and PC-based systems because you need some updates for your system to work.

Boosters and amplifiers

If 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.

For full details, see: Freeview signals: too much of a good thing is bad for you.

Homes without Freeview now have Freeview Light

If you had no Freeview service before, you will have the BBC channels digitally from Wednesday 29th February 2012. 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 Wednesday 29th February 2012 then you may need a new aerial.

If you are served by a public service (relay) transmitter, which are:

Haslemere (6am), Steyning (9am) now need, from around from 6am (unless shown otherwise) on 14th March 2012 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.

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 overlap

The 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. 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.

For more details, see: Digital Region Overlap

Freeview HD

Freeview HD will start on Wednesday 14th March 2012 from Midhurst and all 2 relay transmitters. You will need a Freeview HD - DVB-T2 receiver to watch the channels. An HD "Ready" TV set with Freeview is not enough.

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Tuesday, 13 March 2012
2:01 PM

I live in Bramble Close West Sussex and keep getting intermittent (no signals) from all bbc and itv channels on freeview will this be resolved when the switchover happens in April. Please don't tell me it our aerial because it isn't!!!

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Jenny.Delgado's 1 post EU

10:09 PM

The SOUTHERN logo reminds me of FREEWHEELERS & HOW when I was a kid in the 60s.

Is Fred Dineage (of HOW) still presenting the local news in this region, as far as I recall he has presented for SOUTHERN, TVS & MERIDIAN & WHATEVER IT'S CALLED NOW ? ITV1 SOUTH maybe?

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Nedbod's 619 posts GB
Wednesday, 14 March 2012

6:30 AM

Nedbod: The region is still called by the name of the licence it holds to broadcast, which is Meridian.

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Briantist's 38,844 posts GB
8:17 AM

I have re-tuned this morning (14th March) and have received extra channels but the Freeview HD channels on 58 are missing? I have a Humax HDR-FOX T2 HD 1080p. Does anyone know why I can't see the HD transmission? I live near Pulborough, West Sussex.

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Homestead's 2 posts GB

9:01 AM

Homestead: With the exception of the BBC mux Midhurst is not shown as being able to provide good reception at any time on your post code area, as both ITV and the HD service are both permanently indicated as having a variable status and with elements of this on the other muxes, however Crystal Palace does but only from April 18th when all six muxes are then indicated as giving good reception.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB

11:39 AM

From the Arqiva Press Office


Date: 14 March 2012

Midhurst transmitter group completes DSO

The Digital Switch Over process for the Midhurst transmitter group, serving much of West Sussex, has been successfully implemented by Arqiva.

Digital multiplexes are now being transmitted at full power from the main station at Midhurst and, for the first time, from its two dependent relays at Haslemere and Steyning.

The Arqiva B commercial multiplex at Midhurst does not reach its final DSO power until 25 April 2012, as planned.

Following the analogue switch-off for BBC Two on 29 February, the remaining analogue signals for BBC One, ITV1 and Channel 4 ceased from 00:06 on Wednesday 14 March. The new digital signals entered official service at Midhurst at 05:00, with the last of the relays completed by 08:56.

Arqiva is the transmission provider for all terrestrial TV and most radio services in the UK.

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Briantist's 38,844 posts GB
Friday, 16 March 2012
Mike Tidy
10:51 AM

I am surprised by your announcement: "Switchover complete for non-coastal West Sussex". I'm located near Cowfold West Sussex and have been trying to tune in since Wed 14 March using a TVONICS Digi Box. The box announces it has found a few channels but after tuning I get "no signal" for all channels. Please can you confirm that Midhurst is transmitting at full power.

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Mike Tidy's 3 posts GB

11:25 AM

Mike Tidy: Midhurt is at full power on the PSB1, PSB2, PSB3 and COM4 multiplexes, COM5 is at low power and COM6 is at pre-switchover power.

Please do My Freeview box has no EPG, is blank on FIVE, ITV3, ITV4, ITV2+1, has no sound or the channel line up is wrong | - independent free digital TV advice to your box.

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Briantist's 38,844 posts GB

11:42 AM

Mike Tidy: It is possible that weak signals from Rowridge and/or Hannington are detected during the scan and channels stored which are not strong enough to view. After doing the reset procedure, start the scan with the aerial unplugged. Plug it back in about C48 so that only Midhurst frequencies are scanned.

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KMJ,Derby's 1,811 posts GB
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