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UK Digital switchover ends - Northern Ireland completes on 24th October 2012

If you live in the Brougher Mountain, Divis, or Limavady transmitter areas - you will need to perform a 'first time' retune on your Freeview TV or set-top box when you get up for breakfast on this Wednesday morning.

If you live in the Brougher Mountain, Divis, or Limavady  trans
published on UK Free TV
Starting just after midnight on Wednesday 24th October, the next switchover of 2012 will see the number of homes with digital-only terrestrial reception in the UK go up by 647,500 from 97.54% to completed.

Viewers in Northern Ireland who use the Brougher Mountain, Divis, or Limavady "full Freeview" transmitters (and about 43 smaller relay transmitters) will have no analogue television from Wednesday 24th October 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.

Do not expect ANY FREEVIEW television service from midnight until 6am - or a late as mid-afternoon on some relay transmitters (see below for timetable). This means you will not be able to record Freeview programmes overnight. --- but you can watch online here - Watch live UK TV channels and listen to live radio now.

Most people need only perform a "full retune" (or "factory reset" or "shipping condition") on their Freeview box or TV, but it would be impossible with five million homes covered by the transmitters, for no-one to have a problem.

RTE One, RTE Two and TG4

Viewers with Freeview HD (DVB-T2) equipment who receive a signal from the Brougher Mountain, Black Mountain and Carnmoney Hill will also receive the "Northern Ireland Mini-Multiplex" and will receive RTE One and RTE Two and TG4. See Northern Ireland RTE1, RTE2, TG4 special mini-multiplex from 24 October. Most other viewers will be able to watch services directly from transmitters in the republic. You will need the correct equipment:

Set top box compatibility for Freeview, Freeview HD, Saorview and the NIMM



Coverage Maps







From Wednesday 24th October 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.

You will be served by the Freeview HD service from Wednesday, 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?

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 10th October 2012 - you will have to do it again on Wednesday 24th October 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 with no Freeview at all will now have Freeview Light

If you had no Freeview service before, you will have the BBC channels digitally from Wednesday 10th October 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 10th October 2012 then you may need a new aerial.

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

Armagh (9am), Ballintoy (3pm), Ballycastle (9am), Banbridge (noon), Bangor (noon), Belcoo (noon), Bellair (9am), Benagh (3pm), Black Mountain (6am), Buckna (noon), Bushmills (noon), Camlough (9am), Carnmoney Hill (9am), Castlederg (9am), Claudy (3pm), Conlig (6am), Cushendall (noon), Cushendun (9am), Derrygonnelly (3pm), Draperstown (9am), Dromore (3pm), Ederny (noon), Glenariff (3pm), Glenelly Valley (2pm), Glynn (2pm), Gortnageeragh (6am), Gortnalee (3pm), Kilkeel (noon), Killowen Mountain (9am), Larne (7:30am), Leitrim (3pm), Lisbellaw (9am), Londonderry (6am), Moneymore (3pm), Muldonagh (noon), Newcastle (noon), Newry North (noon), Newry South (3pm), Newtownards (9am), Plumbridge (11am), Rostrevor (9am), Strabane (7:30am), Whitehead (11am)

...you now need, from around from 9am (unless shown otherwise) on 24th October 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.

Overlap with other regions

Because of the location of the transmitters, some viewers will find that they can pick up the signal from other BBC and ITV 1 regional studios.

Those viewers with "Freeview HD" (or other so called D-Book 7) receivers will find they are presented with a menu to allow them to pick which BBC One region is shown on "button 1", and which ITV 1 regions appears as channel 3.



Viewers with older equipment may have to resort to doing a manual to get the correct signal for the desired transmitter.

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 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".

For more details, see: Digital Region Overlap


Originally published on 11th October 2012 at 00:00 by Brian Butterworth

Help with Freeview, aerials?
How do I get a test card with Freeview1
I would like to know if it is possible to receive UK terrestrial Freeview servic2
I have been told I would receive too much singal from my Freeview tansmitter as 3
Can my Freeview box receive more than one BBC and ITV region?4
Is it true that my 87 year old mother is entitled to a FREE upgrade when the ana5
In this section
Should the UK close down the TV networks to allow for more mobile broadband? 1
The last day of analogue television in the UK - goodbye PAL2
2 days left of analogue television - goodbye teletext3
3 days of analogue to go - goodbye to NICAM 7284
Changes to Saorview frequencies and power levels, 24th October 20125
Northern Ireland RTE1, RTE2, TG4 special mini-multiplex from 24 October6

Comments
Tuesday, 23 October 2012
R
Rob James
8:17 PM

On this last day of the digital switchover I think it is time to post a big vote of thanks to "Briantist" for leading us safely through these sometimes murky waters.
I am far from technically challenged and i have had good cause to be grateful. I am sure many thousands of others less fortunate have even more reason to be thankful.
So, thank you Brian for all the tireless hard work. It is much appreciated!!!

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Rob James's 1 post GB flag
J
Jim Cassidy
11:29 PM

Hear Hear!
But don't go away please, we might need you tomorrow and beyond for a while.
Many thanks.

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Jim Cassidy's 18 posts GB flag
M
Mark
11:46 PM
Ballymena

Channel 5 analogue still on-air at 11.45pm. All other channels already switched off.

link to this comment
Mark's 13 posts GB flag
Mark's: mapM's Freeview map terrainM's terrain plot wavesM's frequency data M's Freeview Detailed Coverage
G
gerry
sentiment_satisfiedBronze

11:59 PM
Londonderry

Moville -Tranmitter Think 10am Jim there is going to be a live broadcast on RTE 1 at 9.55am,My Aerial is pointing to Moville quality only 70% compared to 100% for Freeview, Picture is breaking up and Moville would need further boosted To Max Power by RTE tomorrow if you are having any problems get in contact with RTE and your local TD i suggest

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gerry's 21 posts IE flag
gerry's: mapG's Freeview map terrainG's terrain plot wavesG's frequency data G's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Wednesday, 24 October 2012
M
Mark
12:07 AM
Ballymena

Channel 5 analogue switched off at 12.05am. Cheerio analogue TV!

link to this comment
Mark's 13 posts GB flag
Mark's: mapM's Freeview map terrainM's terrain plot wavesM's frequency data M's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Briantist
sentiment_very_satisfiedOwner

8:18 AM

Mark: I was watching the BBC UTV programme... on satellite.

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Briantist's 38,910 posts GB flag
N
Nicholas Willmott
sentiment_satisfiedBronze

10:24 AM

Gerry, I'd try retuning again this evening. Perhaps not all the muxes at Limavady were ready at 6:30am.

The day of DSO Stage 2 in April 2010, I tried retuning breakfast time and got nothing from the Bath relay. Even the BBC SD channels which I had from Bath the previous fortnight had gone. When I tried retuning again in the evening I got PSB1 (ch. 25) and PSB2 (ch. 28) from Bath relay successfully.

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Nicholas Willmott's 80 posts GB flag
Sean
11:15 AM

HI, I currently have an ariel to receive my BBC and ITV coverage from Brouger mt. I also have a saorview box to get my rte's from cairnhill. I live in Roosky co leitrim. I did a scan on saturday and was able to get BBC1, 2, 3, and 4, a lot of radio channels bbc news etc, as well as all the saorview channels. Will i be able to get the full signal now if i do a rescan? (54.22671,-7.704) 

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Sean's 2 posts IE flag
Dave Lindsay
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

11:17 AM

gerry: Have you tried manually tuning?

PSB2 mux carries UTV, C4, C5 etc and is on UHF channel 59.

COM4 mux carries ITV3, QVC etc and is on UHF channel 54.

COM5 mux carries Pick TV, Dave, Really etc and is on UHF channel 58.

Try going to the manual tune function and selecting/entering the relevant UHF channel number but don't press the button to scan/search. A lot of receivers give an indication as to signal strength (and maybe quality) at this point.

If it shows a signal is present, press the button to scan/search the channel.

link to this comment
Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB flag
Dave Lindsay
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

11:24 AM

Sean: Yes, do a rescan now; all Brougher Mountain channels (should be) on air.

Brougher Mountain transmits a special multiplex which carries RT 1 and 2 and TG4. They are in standard definition but a high definition (Freeview HD) will be required to receive them. As you have Saorview, the Brougher Mountain mux may not be required.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB flag
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