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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 26/02/2024 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, 83 Together TV, 89 ITV4 +1, 91 WildEarth, 209 Ketchup TV, 210 Ketchup Too, 211 YAAAS!, 267 Al Jazeera English, plus 30 others

 H -0.2dB
C36 (594.0MHz)289mDTG-8170,000W
Channel icons
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 TV 2, 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
12 Quest, 25 W, 27 Yesterday, 34 GREAT! movies, 39 DMAX, 44 HGTV, 52 GREAT! romance, 56 That's TV (UK), 61 GREAT! movies extra, 63 GREAT! romance mix, 71 That’s 60s, 73 HobbyMaker, 82 Talking Pictures TV, 84 PBS America, 235 Al Jazeera Eng, plus 18 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.

Friday, 8 July 2011
8:31 PM

Hi mike thanks for the reply, having taken a close look at the old aerial, i noticed both the bracket and mast are suffering badly with corrosion so to save the hassle i think i will replace the lot, but following your advise i will just use a basic wide band [probably yegar pattern] aerial. for the time being i have plugged an old 8inch indoor loop to the decoder [got the wife off my back] and have perfect picture on most channels [a few are missing]

Many thanks for your imput


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Brian's 2 posts SE flag
Steve P

11:46 PM

Mike D - I do not believe Wolfbane's ae choices - I can at home get a signal with a set top loop where they say "amplified high gain"

But they have a very clear presentation of what might be available and relative strength; bearing, etc.

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Steve P's 1,173 posts GB flag
Sunday, 10 July 2011
4:08 PM

bran having problem picking up channels up on frequency 24, reads str 7 quailty 4, but it isn't on my frequency detected list ???

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chris's 13 posts GB flag

5:15 PM

chris: The answer totally depends on where you are located and what your aerial set up might be, with neither being mentioned!

Ch24 being the high powered PSB2 Mux on the Sandy (Anglia) transmitter.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB flag
9:07 PM

i have a wide band aerial, situated at roof height plus. am located in cb25 0bb admittingly itv never has been the best where i am, i have a hill between us and sandy and the sudbury tx the other way. the fact is that sandy my nearest has always been dedicated to bbc. have a feeling my box is up the creek, i will try another box on there

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chris's 13 posts GB flag
chris's: mapC's Freeview map terrainC's terrain plot wavesC's frequency data C's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Friday, 15 July 2011
3:18 PM

hi I live in harlow ( cm187pb) and we are currently receiving our signal from sandy heath, a few weeks we lost mux: COM6 ArqB and from about 3 days ago we lost Mux: A..

nothing has changed with our set up, we are running 4 TV sets (3boxes 1freeview TV) from our outdoor ariel connected to. 4 way signal booster.

is it possible that our signal booster is boosting the week signals making them weeker? the problem with that is Mux C works perfectly, full signal. & no breakups.

any help/advice?

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Joe's 4 posts GB flag
Steve P

6:45 PM

Are neighbours getting the same?

Could your booster have been depowered? Can you power it on/off and see a difference?

Booster would not make weak signals WEAKER though it could feasibly make them noisier so less effective.

But your change seems to fit in with the timings Brian has noted above - as copied here

NOTE: The commercial multiplexes at Sandy Heath will remain on their pre-switchover channels and powers for a period after digital switchover. SDN will then temporarily move to channel 31 (at 20kW ERP) on 31 Aug 2011, before adopting its final allocation of channel 51 on 18th April 2012. Arqiva A will adopt its final allocation of channel 52 on 23 Nov 2011. Arqiva B will temporarily move to channel 67 (at 20kW ERP) at switchover and then it will adopt its final allocation of channel 48 on 14 Sept 2011. NOTE: D3&4 and HD use transitional S1 antenna until 27 June 2012. NOTE: Ofcom have projected that a local television service could use an Interleaved Frequency on the Sandy Heath transmitter using C49. NOTE: Ofcom have projected that a local television service could use an Interleaved Frequency on the Sandy Heath transmitter using C23.

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Steve P's 1,173 posts GB flag
Saturday, 16 July 2011
12:18 AM

with the booster off there is no picture on any tv 's so the booster is definitely doing its job,

all of our neibours are currently on sky/virgin..

we're just finding it hard to figure out what could be the problem.. we had every channel before switchover and then a few weeks ago 2 of the weaker mux's. decided to gradually drop out (was working at night for a few hours) . leeding us to believe there's a problem with the transmitter?

we can live with it for at least another month but then we'll prob move onto freesat

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joe's 4 posts GB flag

8:49 AM

joe: I do not think that there is any faults in your system to look for, although I do feel that the Mux's you are having problems with were being received at a level not that terribly far above the reception threshold in the first place, although the levels concerned were possibly of a reasonably stable nature and that's why everything appeared as being OK.

If, and taking with the proverbial pinch of salt, "genuinely" nothing has been altered at the transmitter, then I would say that your reception problem is simply caused by natural seasonally changing atmospheric conditions, something that occurred all the time with analogue transmissions but being relatively unnoticed, except maybe for the picture having slightly more speckles than usual.

Terrestrial digital TV reception with its receiving threshold known as the "digital cliff" effect, is always going to have more people complaining of problems than ever happened with analogue, and especially so where people are in non "line of sight" locations, this no matter at what distance they might be from the transmitter, although the further away the worse it gets, as the greater the distance from the transmitter the more the chances are of it being interfered with for all sorts of reasons.

That being said though, the trade predictions are that Mux A should improve on 31st August when it changes from Ch43 to 31, and this likewise with Mux C on 14th September when it changes from Ch40 to 67.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB flag
Sunday, 17 July 2011

12:09 PM

OS1: I would start by removing the booster box from your system, as you probably have a signal overload.

However, you will not get the SDN multiplex until 31 Aug 11 and ARQA on 14 Sep 11. ARQA may be problematic until the first date.

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Briantist's 38,910 posts GB flag
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