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Full Freeview on the Bilsdale (North Yorkshire, England) transmitter

first published this on - UK Free TV
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The symbol shows the location of the Bilsdale (North Yorkshire, England) transmitter which serves 570,000 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 Bilsdale (North Yorkshire, England) mast?

BILSDALE transmitter - Freeview: Off air due to a fire. Go to our Works and Warnings section for more information. from 10 Aug 13:26. . DAB: Off the air due to a fault from 10 Aug 13:41. . FM: Off the air due to a fault from 10 Aug 13:20. . BBC


Choose from three options: ■ List by multiplex ■ List by channel number ■ List by channel name
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Which Freeview channels does the Bilsdale 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.

MuxH/VFrequencyHeightModeWatts
PSB1
BBCA
 H max
C21 (474.0MHz)676mDTG-3100,000W
Channel icons
1 BBC One (SD) North East and Cumbria, 2 BBC Two England, 9 BBC Four, 23 BBC Three, 201 CBBC, 202 CBeebies, 231 BBC News, 232 BBC Parliament, 250 BBC Red Button, plus 15 others

PSB2
D3+4
 H max
C24 (498.0MHz)676mDTG-3100,000W
Channel icons
3 ITV 1 (SD) (Tyne Tees), 4 Channel 4 (SD) North ads, 5 Channel 5, 6 ITV 2, 10 ITV3, 13 E4, 14 Film4, 15 Channel 4 +1 North ads, 18 More4, 26 ITV4, 30 E4 +1, 35 ITV1 +1 (Tyne Tees),

PSB3
BBCB
 H max
C27 (522.0MHz)676mDTG-6100,000W
Channel icons
56 5SELECT, 101 BBC One HD (England no regional news), 102 BBC Two HD (England), 103 ITV 1 HD (ITV Granada), 104 Channel 4 HD North ads, 105 Channel 5 HD, 106 BBC Four HD, 109 BBC Three HD, 204 CBBC HD, 205 CBeebies HD, plus 1 others

COM4
SDN
 H -3dB
C43 (650.0MHz)676mDTG-850,000W
Channel icons
12 Quest, 20 Drama, 21 5USA, 29 ITV2 +1, 32 5STAR, 33 5Action, 41 Legend, 42 GREAT! movies action, 46 Channel 5 +1, 58 ITVBe +1, 59 ITV3 +1, 64 Blaze, 67 CBS Reality, 74 Dave ja vu, 78 TCC, 81 Blaze +1, 89 ITV4 +1, 203 CITV, 208 POP MAX, 209 Ketchup TV, 210 Ketchup Too, 211 YAAAS!, plus 15 others

COM5
ArqA
 H -3dB
C46 (674.0MHz)681mDTG-850,000W
Channel icons
11 Sky Arts, 17 Really, 19 Dave, 31 E4 Extra, 36 pick, 40 Quest Red, 43 Food Network, 47 Film4 +1, 48 Challenge, 49 4seven, 57 Smithsonian Channel, 60 Drama +1, 70 Quest +1, 75 Yesterday +1, 83 Together TV, 233 Sky News, plus 8 others

COM6
ArqB
 H -3dB
C40 (626.0MHz)681mDTG-850,000W
Channel icons
 FreeSports, 25 W, 27 Yesterday, 34 GREAT! movies, 39 DMAX, 44 HGTV, 71 Quest Red +1, 73 HobbyMaker, 82 Talking Pictures TV, 84 PBS America, 88 Classic Hits, 235 Aljazeera English, plus 19 others

DTG-3 64QAM 8K 2/3 24.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
DTG-6 256QAM 32KE 2/3 40.2Mb/s DVB-T2 MPEG4
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 Bilsdale transmitter?

regional news image
BBC Look North (Newcastle) 1.6m homes 6.0%
from Newcastle NE99 2NE, 74km north-northwest (336°)
to BBC North East and Cumbria region - 70 masts.
regional news image
ITV Tyne Tees News 1.4m homes 5.4%
from Gateshead NE11 9SZ, 75km north-northwest (333°)
to ITV Tyne Tees region - 47 masts.
All of lunch, weekend and 50% evening news is shared with Border

Are there any self-help relays?

Garsdale (pin Fold)Transposer63 homes (coverage together with SH34)
Hawsker BottomActive deflector 150 caravans
LangthwaiteActive deflector30 homes

How will the Bilsdale (North Yorkshire, England) transmission frequencies change over time?

1984-971997-981998-20122012-1313 Nov 2019
A K TA K TA K TK TW T
C21BBCA
C23C4wavesC4wavesC4wavesBBCB
C24_localD3+4
C26BBC2wavesBBC2wavesBBC2wavesBBCA
C27BBCB
C29ITVwavesITVwavesITVwavesD3+4
C30_local
C31com7
C33BBC1wavesBBC1wavesBBC1waves
C35C5wavesC5waves
C37com8
C40ArqBArqB
C43SDNSDN
C46ArqAArqA
C55tv_offcom7tv_off
C56tv_offCOM8tv_off

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 12 Sep 12 and 26 Sep 12.

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

Analogue 1-5 500kW
BBCA, D3+4, BBCB(-7dB) 100kW
SDN, ARQA, ARQB(-10dB) 50kW
com7(-14.3dB) 18.5kW
com8(-14.4dB) 18.1kW
Mux 2*, Mux A*, Mux B*, Mux C*(-19.2dB) 6kW
Mux 1*(-20.2dB) 4.8kW
Mux D*(-24.9dB) 1.6kW

Which companies have run the Channel 3 services in the Bilsdale transmitter area

May 1956-Jul 1968Granada Television†
May 1956-Jul 1968Associated British Corporation◊
Jul 1968-Jul 1974Yorkshire Television
Jul 1974-Feb 2004Tyne Tees 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. Bilsdale was not an original Channel 3 VHF 405-line mast: the historical information shown is the details of the company responsible for the transmitter when it began transmitting Channel 3.

Is the transmitter output the same in all directions?

Radiation patterns withheld

Comments
Thursday, 27 September 2012
Dave Lindsay
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

1:56 PM

Alan: Different receivers have differing tollerances and therefore I wouldn't jump to the conclusion that there is a fault.

The thing to be aware of about Bilsdale is that aerials may require replacement because some channels are out of the former analogue group.

In the days of four-channel analogue, each transmitter used four UHF channels (frequencies) from within the same "group". Each group is a portion of the band of frequencies used for TV.

Aerials that were installed were usually grouped meaning that they are most sensitive of one particular group and that they drop off in sensitivity outside of the group.

Bilsdale was Group A (C21 to C37) for all five analogue channels and all pre-switchover digital multiplexes, except for one (Mux D which carried Film4, Yesterday etc). Group A is the bottom third of the band.

Post-switchover the Public Service (PSB) channels are on Group A channels, but the three Commercial (COM) channels are in Group B (middle third of the band). COM5 is the highest of the COMs which is on C46.

The channels are (those in brackets are the pre-switchover channels of the equivalent multiplexes):

PSB1 | BBC One | C26 (C34)
PSB2 | ITV1 | C29 (C21)
PSB3 | BBC One HD | C23 (n/a)
COM4 | ITV3 | C43 (C31)
COM5 | Pick TV | C46 (C27)
COM6 | Film4 | C40 (C42)

Prior to switchover the booster may have been needed because the digital signals were on much lower power. It is, of course, always worth a try without it. But I wonder if it may in practice be being used now to compensate for the weaker signals due to them being out of group.

To understand the sensitivities of aerials, see these example gain curves:

Gain (curves), Again

If, having tried removing the booster, it doesn't work and you decide to replace the aerial I suggest that you get a Group K aerial if you get a yagi type or if it's a log periodic, then these are wideband but have a flatter response than yagis (see gain curves on above link).

See here for some pointers:

Bilsdale TV Transmitter

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
J
Jan
7:28 PM

Please help me I live in whitby and have always recieved my signal from bilsdale after the switchover on the 26th I have now lost channels like 5+1 5usa 5* dave challange quest and im gutted why is this why have they gone i have retuned 3 times since yesterday and its still not there!!!! help

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Jan's 4 posts GB
Dave Lindsay
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

7:41 PM

Jan: Try manually tuning for them. 5+1, 5USA, 5* and Quest are carried on COM4 which is on UHF channel 43 from Bilsdale and Dave and Challenge are on COM5 which are on C46.

Perhaps you need your aerial replacing to receive the COM channels. I covered this in response to Alan in the posting immediately before yours.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
M
Matt
10:03 PM

I live in Pickering, and have had an acceptable signal on all channels until the switchover. Now PSB1 experineces freezing and breakup. I am using a standard digital aerial and a 4 way booster. I believe this is caused by too strong a signal from BBCA, so I have reduced the gain on the booster. However, the signal is not at all maxing out, (strength 8 quality 7.) If anyone can help with this please. I am using a Thomspon top up tv box

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Matt's 3 posts GB
Friday, 28 September 2012
Dave Lindsay
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

11:21 AM

Matt: Have you confirmed that it is not picking up Emley Moor's BBCA on C47 instead of Bilsdale's which is on C26?

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
Dave Lindsay
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

11:36 AM

Could someone suggest why it might be that the DUK Postcode Checker "thinks" that the Bilsdale PSBs aren't as good as the COMs in the Saltburn-by-the-Sea area?

There appears to be no co-channel transmitters that could degrade reception and the COMs are on half-power to the PSBs. So surely the COMs would be most likely to be not as good as the PSBs, if any.

Postcode Checker - Detailed View

Postcode Checker - Detailed View

Up the coast at Seaham, all are "good", but the figures for served and marginal are slightly down for the PSBs:

Postcode Checker - Detailed View


I appreciate that the DUK is a calculation and therefore there may be variables that aren't totally correct. But what could make the predictor give this result. Could it be Caldbeck?

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
T
Tony
1:20 PM
Darlington

First off, just wanted to say what an excellent site this is, and it's been very informative.

I'm really p'd off right now, as I don't think there's been any publicity given to the change of frequencies on Bilsdale transmitter post-cutover - so for people such as my parents, who had a decent freeview signal on all but Mux6 pre-cutover - suddenly find they've got fewer channels than before, and are unexpectedly having to think about having the aerial replaced.

So, with that in mind, looking at the frequencies table above I see that the current aerial group recommended for bilsdale is K, but for 2013 onwards it says W. Is there yet another frequency change coming next year?

Is a K still the recommended type, or should they be looking at a W type?

Thanks.



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Tony's 2 posts EU
Dave Lindsay
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

2:59 PM

Tony: My sympathies go to you.

Before replacing the aerial, try manually tuning if the receiver allows.


There are also a proportion who receive from PSB-only relays, such as in Whitby and Guisborough, who have had to wait to switchover to get any Freeview at all. These people will be disappointed that they have limited channels.

The nonsense of so many wideband or semi-wideband transmitters (where PSBs are in one group and COMs in another) is caused by the fact that channels 31 to 37 have been ringfenced to be sold off for more multiplexes... or maybe not depending on what the powers that be decide.

Consequently, where previously Group A channels available were 21 to 35 (or perhaps you could say 21 to 37) are now 21 to 30 (but only a handful of transmitters use C30).

At the top end (C/D), C61 to C68 have been ringfenced to be sold off to 4G mobile operators, so this is now a smaller group as well.

The silly nonsense of prospectively putting three new muliplexes in the 31 to 37 gap means that some Group C/D aerials (on C/D transmitters) may have to be replaced.

When it was all planned out, the vast majority of transmitters had four channels all in the same group. Queue the introduction of Channel 5 in 1997 and the insistence that logical planning and universal coverage should go out the window in order to cram in as many as possible.

The objective has always been that post-switchover the PSB services are available in all areas that four-channel analogue was, and without the need to change aerials. This has been achieved in all but a small number of cases.


In answer to your question, in signal areas where a log periodic will work, use one. These are naturally wideband and have a much flatter response than yagis.

Where more gain is needed, a yagi must be used. Because the gain curve of yagis always peak at a relatively high channel and slope off downwards, wideband yagis have less gain on Group A channels. This means that a "high-gain" wideband aerial isn't "high-gain" on Group A channels:

Aerials, TV Aerial and Digital Aerial

See this page for some examples to understand this point:

Gain (curves), Again

It is really a compromise. The more channels you design the aerial to operate across, the more the curve stretches and hence the more the low gain end spans more channels.

I'm not sure on what basis that the above says wideband. Perhaps because everything may all get thrown up in the air and it will be anyone's guess as to where they land....

However, on the basis that useable C/D is now smaller, I wouldn't have thought that they would be allocating any C/D channels to transmitters that currently don't have them.

In any case, it doesn't mean that "no" signal is received out of group. As I say, the gain slopes away.


For more information and products, see ATV's site:

Bilsdale TV Transmitter

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
T
Tony
3:39 PM
Darlington

Many thanks for your quick response.
I had tried manually retuning, but that didn't make any difference.
I've read through the aerials links, and as you've suggested a log periodic sounds like the best option. Cheers!

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Tony's 2 posts EU
A
Alan
10:36 PM
Stockton-on-tees

Hi Dave,
Yes I agree with Tony this is a great site and I thoroughly appreciate your time and help.
I managed to find out we have a wideband aerial fitted so I'm unsure whether this a k group aerial or not?

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Alan's 4 posts GB
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