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All posts by Willie Bone

Below are all of Willie Bone's postings, with the most recent are at the bottom of the page.


BBC One Scotland HD is currently screening upscaled versions of its flagship news programme 'Reporting Scotland'. Too early to comment on sports coverage picture quality.

I spent last Christmas in Northern Ireland and can confirm that BBC NI HD is on the Sky Digital EPG..

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Hello Michael, I viewed The Ten O'Clock News followed by a short Reporting Scotland news bulletin on Monday, January 14th. Both news programmes were not in HD and I double checked the Sky+HD programme details flag for the Tuesday evening lineup which lists both programmes as widescreen (only).
However, I did check BBC Breakfast Time this morning and discovered the Scottish regional opt out news bulletin was indeed partly in high definition. Kind Regards..Willie

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Hello Alan, Yes! BBC 2HD will be a national network channel, rumoured launch date sometime in March! BBC 2 Scotland will be standard definition only until 2015, at least..

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Hello Folks, The shouting is nearly over, the government will probably announce a five year notice to the listening public for a FM shutdown for most radio services on the run up to Christmas. Audio philes like myself have already bought internet radio units for the kitchen and hifi plug ins to receive better audio quality through internet radio. I would always recommend buying internet radio with an integrated DAB tuner as back up! (Okay! DAB will become the new medium wave, eventually!)
Would it not be a good idea to phase in a DAB+ service and marry it up to the DNS technology? A bit like Freeview HD with connected tv potential on MP4 with the carriage of some MP2 services.
Freeview on MP4 may become exclusive by 2020, along with a DAB only system. So, it would be sensible to include a DAB+ phase in as part of the Culture Secretary's speech in December.
I honestly do not think analogue radio will be around by the next decade! A large chunk of FM spectrum will probably be auctioned off after 2018!




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Away from mainstream radio, there is also a very emotional tide about the demise of shortwave as an external radio service carrier.
Shortwave's delivery patform was under attack before the onslaught of internet radio. Domestic satellite was already starting to carry studio quality versions of short wave radio broadcasters at 96kbps (MP2) mono. WRN still carries public service broadcasting output on satellite to the UK, sourced from China, Russia, Korea, most of Europe and elsewhere.
Now internet radio is bringing in stereo versions of the Voice Of Russia, Voice Of America and China Radio International. A dream come true from the far off days of listening to cold war radio in the 1960s through to the 1980s.
The shortwave diehards of today love shortwave as other people appreciate steam navigation and steam locomotion! They know deep down that shortwave has not a place in the modern world!!

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Should the UK close down the TV networks to allow for more mobile broadband?
ANSWER: NO

Freeview entered its first phase as the defunct ONDIGITAL replacement followed by an exclusive roll on the terrestrial television system with analogue switch off by 2012, heralding the start of phase two.
Freeview phase three should begin around year 2019/2020 as an exclusive dtt delivery system encoded on a MP4 compression layer. This will allow HD2/HD3 to be available to over 98% per cent of the UK population while some vacated frequencies can be auction off to telcos.
A fourth phase of Freeview or system closure should not be considered until year 2030.
Let us face it! If super broadband availability is not universal by the year 2030, it never will be at any time!!

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Digital radio section | Digital radio
Tuesday 28 January 2014 7:45PM

Nedbod, If the regulator has any sense, the national Digital 2 DAB multiplex should be gifted to the BBC to allow greater bandwidth on the eleven (including secondary) BBC national radio services and bring stereo to Radio 4Extra and the Asian Service. That is, if DAB+ (mp4) is kicked to the kerb in the short term.
The DAB transmission system is forward compatible and is compliant if the old DAB revision is upgraded to DAB+.. So it is a worthwhile effort to expand BBC National DAB on its current phase 4 transmitter roll out!
As you may know, London 3 multiplex is the first all mono service in the UK and possibly the world. Not much to brag about by the DAB purists!
Better purchasing an internet receiver with DAB+ integrated and it will allow all the popular music stations to stream to your receiver on 128kbps MP3 stereo as minimum standard with most services. You can use the DAB tuner if the server keels over..

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Digital radio section | Digital radio
Wednesday 29 January 2014 8:13PM

Mark & Nedbod, I think Digital 2 will be the litmus test for the future of DAB in the UK.
If all channels carried are to be original DAB rather than DAB+ on Digital 2, DAB+ will be a non-starter.
It does look very much like that the Republic Of Ireland may change direction in the short term and go for DAB+. Tests are already taking place for DAB+ on a multiplex in Ireland with the test signal coverage area recently extended..

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Brian, Viewing Scottish programmes from Calbeck have ITV Border (Scotland) available in standard definition with ITV Granada (currently) as the high definition ITV service,
I did a tuner scan in earlyJanuary to capture the regional enhancement of ITV Border (Scotland) which now screens Scottish Border political programmes to Scotland only.
Point is, STV HD was not included as in the channel line up from Caldbeck!

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DISCRIMINATION OF BBC THREE TELEVISION VIEWERS.
The only viewers in Britain who are forced to pay twice with the licence fee charge and then a broadband charge to allow access to BBC Three television programming from autumn 2015.. Surely, that is a contradiction of a public service ethos!!.

There is always this banging of the big bass drum with criticism of internet radio over DAB where the former requires an additional charge while the latter DAB radio services are free at point of reception. So why discriminate against less well off young people who like BBC Three and are forced to pay an additional price to receive it?

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