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Full Freeview on the Sandy Heath (Central Bedfordshire, England) transmitter

first published this on - UK Free TV
sa_streetviewGoogle Streetviewsa_gmapsGoogle mapsa_bingBing mapsa_gearthGoogle Earthsa_gps52.130,-0.242 or 52°7'47"N 0°14'33"Wsa_postcodeSG19 2NH


The symbol shows the location of the Sandy Heath (Central Bedfordshire, England) transmitter which serves 920,000 homes. The bright green areas shown where the signal from this transmitter is strong, dark green areas are poorer signals. Those parts shown in yellow may have interference on the same frequency from other masts.

Are there any planned engineering works or unexpected transmitter faults on the Sandy Heath (Central Bedfordshire, England) mast?

Sandy Heath transmitter - Sandy Heath transmitter: Possible effect on TV reception week commencing 27/11/2023 Pixelation or flickering on some or all channels Digital tick

Choose from three options: ■ List by multiplex ■ List by channel number ■ List by channel name

Which Freeview channels does the Sandy Heath transmitter broadcast?

If you have any kind of Freeview fault, follow this Freeview reset procedure first.

Digital television services are broadcast on a multiplexes (or Mux) where many stations occupy a single broadcast frequency, as shown below.

 H max
C27 (522.0MHz)291mDTG-180,000W
Channel icons
1 BBC One (SD) Cambridge, 2 BBC Two England, 9 BBC Four, 23 BBC Three, 201 CBBC, 202 CBeebies, 231 BBC News, 232 BBC Parliament, plus 16 others

 H max
C24 (498.0MHz)291mDTG-180,000W
Channel icons
3 ITV 1 (SD) (Anglia (West micro region)), 4 Channel 4 (SD) South ads, 5 Channel 5, 6 ITV 2, 10 ITV3, 13 E4, 14 Film4, 15 Channel 4 +1 South ads, 18 More4, 26 ITV4, 28 ITVBe, 30 E4 +1, 35 ITV1 +1 (Anglia east),

 H max
C21+ (474.2MHz)291mDTG-180,000W
Channel icons
46 5SELECT, 101 BBC One HD Cambridge, 102 BBC Two HD England, 103 ITV 1 HD (ITV Meridian Southampton), 104 Channel 4 HD South ads, 105 Channel 5 HD, 106 BBC Four HD, 107 BBC Three HD, 204 CBBC HD, 205 CBeebies HD, plus 1 others

 H -0.2dB
C33 (570.0MHz)291mDTG-8170,000W
Channel icons
20 Drama, 21 5USA, 29 ITV2 +1, 32 5STAR, 33 5Action, 38 Channel 5 +1, 41 Legend, 42 GREAT! action, 57 Dave ja vu, 58 ITVBe +1, 59 ITV3 +1, 64 Blaze, 67 TRUE CRIME, 68 TRUE CRIME XTRA, 78 TCC, 81 Blaze +1, 89 ITV4 +1, 91 WildEarth, 209 Ketchup TV, 210 Ketchup Too, 211 YAAAS!, 267 Al Jazeera English, plus 35 others

 H -0.2dB
C36 (594.0MHz)289mDTG-8170,000W
Channel icons
 Smithsonian Channel, 11 Sky Mix, 17 Really, 19 Dave, 31 E4 Extra, 36 Sky Arts, 40 Quest Red, 43 Food Network, 47 Film4 +1, 48 Challenge, 49 4seven, 60 Drama +1, 65 That's Christmas, 70 Quest +1, 74 Yesterday +1, 75 That's 90s, 233 Sky News, plus 11 others

 H -0.2dB
C48 (690.0MHz)289mDTG-8170,000W
Channel icons
 Quest Red +1,  Classic Hits, 12 Quest, 25 W, 27 Yesterday, 34 GREAT! movies, 39 DMAX, 44 HGTV, 52 GREAT! christmas, 56 That's TV (UK), 61 GREAT! movies extra, 63 GREAT! christmas mix, 71 That’s 60s, 73 HobbyMaker, 82 Talking Pictures TV, 83 Together TV, 84 PBS America, 235 Al Jazeera Eng, plus 20 others

DTG-8 64QAM 8K 3/4 27.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
H/V: aerial position (horizontal or vertical)

Which BBC and ITV regional news can I watch from the Sandy Heath transmitter?

regional news image
BBC Look East (West) 1.0m homes 3.7%
from Cambridge CB4 0WZ, 29km east-northeast (65°)
to BBC Cambridge region - 4 masts.
70% of BBC East (East) and BBC East (West) is shared output
regional news image
ITV Anglia News 1.0m homes 3.7%
from Norwich NR1 3JG, 119km east-northeast (60°)
to ITV Anglia (West) region - 5 masts.
All of lunch, weekend and 80% evening news is shared with Anglia (East)

How will the Sandy Heath (Central Bedfordshire, England) transmission frequencies change over time?

1965-80s1984-971997-981998-20112011-1312 Feb 2020

tv_off Being removed from Freeview (for 5G use) after November 2020 / June 2022 - more
Table shows multiplexes names see this article;
green background for transmission frequencies
Notes: + and - denote 166kHz offset; aerial group are shown as A B C/D E K W T
waves denotes analogue; digital switchover was 30 Mar 11 and 13 Apr 11.

How do the old analogue and currrent digital signal levels compare?

Analogue 1-4 1000kW
BBCA, D3+4, BBCB(-7.4dB) 180kW
SDN, ARQA, ARQB(-7.7dB) 170kW
com7(-13dB) 49.6kW
com8(-13.1dB) 49.1kW
Mux 1*, Mux 2*, Mux A*, Mux B*, Mux C*, Mux D*(-17dB) 20kW
Analogue 5(-20dB) 10kW

Which companies have run the Channel 3 services in the Sandy Heath transmitter area

Oct 1959-Feb 2004Anglia Television
Feb 2004-Dec 2014ITV plc
Feb 1983-Dec 1992TV-am•
Jan 1993-Sep 2010GMTV•
Sep 2010-Dec 2014ITV Daybreak•
• Breakfast ◊ Weekends ♦ Friday night and weekends † Weekdays only.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013
Brian Greensides
11:39 AM

jb38, Thank you for taking time to comment on my Mondays posting. I have not as yet reverted to my Amp/Distributor original setup. Also I have not heard of any local installations as you suggest (I did wonder about the new G4 800 mhz interference and even called their help line but they were adamant that as yet there are no masts in this area) I know you said the frequencies are different, but Sandy Heath Com 4/5/6 are close 714, 722, and 690 Mhz. I guess we need to consider harmonics and the fact the loft aerial is the wide band variety. I'm no expert but stranger things happen at sea (so I was lead to believe when I was in the navy)

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Brian Greensides's 17 posts GB flag

3:25 PM

Hi KMJ,Derby, sorry I did omit to say that it could also be adjacent transmitters that were causing the problem. Due to all the blame being placed on the poor old Sandy heath transmitter in so many previous posts I was just trying to shift the blame onto tropo and try to explain that the engineers at Sandy were not to blame. The signal strength seems to be good even at times of interference. I guess that's one of the problems with digital transmissions (less capture effect) and why the Air band will never be converted to digital; it just wouldn't work. Mike.

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MikeG's 31 posts GB flag
7:55 PM

Unfortunately both myself and the neighbours i have spoken to are having dire reception problems with this so called better quality programme reception (i spent a fortune on replacing perfectly good tvs) . can you let us know why we are getting very bad distortion

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LYNN STOKES's 1 post GB flag

8:19 PM

LYNN STOKES: We need a postcode.

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MikeB's 2,579 posts GB flag

8:36 PM

Brian Greensides: Just looking at your 30/9 post, the fact that bypassing the amp seemed to cure the problem makes me think it was my now standard reply to reception problems - too much signal!

Although your a fair distance from the transmitter, power levels seem to have gone up recently, and so 70% strength, 100% quality sounds perfect.

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MikeB's 2,579 posts GB flag

9:08 PM

Brian Greensides: Although the frequencies of Sandy's COM 4 / 5 are indeed close together this is neither here nor there with digital receivers and especially so when they are being radiated from the same mast. However there is one type of situation that such as this would (or might!) apply, and being, if some viewer was attempting to receive a channel from a distant station whilst one of the local stations muxes was operating on an adjacent channel from the one required from the distant station, because if the signal level received from the local mux transmitter was reasonably high then this would result in the receivers auto-gain control circuitry coming into play thereby desensitising the receiver.

It should be said though that breakthrough as such would not occur, as that is something more associated with wider bandwidth analogue reception.

The point I was really trying to make is, that provided that the time factor involved between witnessing the poor quality and rectifying same by removing the splitter / booster was not excessive, meaning more than 15 minutes, because if it was then any high pressure induced interference being experienced could possibly have dropped off during the time taken to bypass the device, however if gap was relatively short then its undeniable that something changed, but whatever it was is definitely not connected with the Waltham or Tacolneston transmitters.

By the way, my reference to the possibility of a new phone mast wasn't specifically a reference to 4G but more along the lines of possible interference caused by a local mast, that said being based on Briantists reception map showing an EE facility between the B1101 and Gas Road near to Springfield Avenue that I did not see listed on the mobile phone mast location site, albeit that this in many cases is out of date as they are not obliged to publish this information.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB flag

9:22 PM

mark: Your in North Norfolk, which is always a problem for TV reception, and according to the terrain plot, you've got something blocking the signal about 3-5km away no matter which transmitter you use.

Your licence allows you to own/watch TV, it does not mean your going to get a decent signal - thats geography and physics. My advice - go Freesat.

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MikeB's 2,579 posts GB flag
Thursday, 3 October 2013

8:57 PM

viclaw: As MK42 could represent a distance of only 10 miles away from the Sandy transmitter if you are using any form of powered booster / splitter then try by passing it by connecting the aerial directly into the Freeview box, if though you do not use such a device then you should check with a neighbour to find out if they are being similarly affected, however if it transpires they are not then your aerial system requires checking.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB flag

10:27 PM

JB38: viclaw has supplied a postcode on this thread

Expecting 4G interference? Tests now show that you have a one in 300 chance | 4G-at-800 | - 11 years of independent, free digital TV advice

Its 16km - so yep - too much signal might be a problem. Also a shared aerial, so might be a problem there.

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MikeB's 2,579 posts GB flag

11:36 PM

MikeB: Thanks for pointing this out, as I failed to notice that viclaw had already made a posting on the same subject under a different heading, his reply to your request for a location having been made 2 minutes after the posting I had replied to.

However now its known (or appears to be) that a communal aerial is involved then I would have thought that most people would have considered that making a quick with a neighbour or anyone else who resides in the block as being the number one thing to do for an instant answer to the problem, because if others are involved then the complaint should be addressed to the management companies maintenance department as the cure for said problem is outwith the control of the resident.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB flag
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