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Full Freeview on the Tacolneston (Norfolk, England) transmitter

first published this on - UK Free TV
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The symbol shows the location of the Tacolneston (Norfolk, England) transmitter which serves 330,000 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.

This transmitter has no current reported problems

The BBC and Digital UK report there are no faults or engineering work on the Tacolneston (Norfolk, England) transmitter.

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

Which Freeview channels does the Tacolneston 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
C40- (625.8MHz)263mDTG-100,000W
Channel icons
1 BBC One (SD) East, 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

 H max
C43- (649.8MHz)263mDTG-100,000W
Channel icons
3 ITV 1 (SD) (Anglia (East 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, 30 E4 +1, 35 ITV1 +1 (Anglia east),

 H max
C46 (674.0MHz)263mDTG-100,000W
Channel icons
56 5SELECT, 101 BBC One HD (England no regional news), 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, 109 BBC Three HD, 204 CBBC HD, 205 CBeebies HD, plus 1 others

 H max
C42 (642.0MHz)263mDTG-8100,000W
Channel icons
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 Player, 209 Ketchup TV, 210 Ketchup Too, 211 YAAAS!, plus 15 others

 H max
C45 (666.0MHz)246mDTG-8100,000W
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 9 others

 H max
C39+ (618.2MHz)246mDTG-8100,000W
Channel icons
12 Quest, 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 Al Jazeera Eng, plus 19 others

 H -10dB
C32 (562.0MHz)263mDTG-1210,000W
Channel icons
7 Mustard,

DTG-8 64QAM 8K 3/4 27.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
DTG-12 QSPK 8K 3/4 8.0Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
H/V: aerial position (horizontal or vertical)

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

regional news image
BBC Look East (East) 0.8m homes 3.2%
from Norwich NR2 1BH, 16km northeast (37°)
to BBC East region - 27 masts.
70% of BBC East (East) and BBC East (West) is shared output
regional news image
ITV Anglia News 0.8m homes 3.2%
from NORWICH NR1 3JG, 16km northeast (38°)
to ITV Anglia (East) region - 26 masts.
All of lunch, weekend and 80% evening news is shared with Anglia (West)

Are there any self-help relays?

Gt YarmouthTransposer1 km S town centre30 homes
Lowestoft (2)TransposerRotterdam Rd125 homes

How will the Tacolneston (Norfolk, England) transmission frequencies change over time?

1950s-80s1984-971997-981998-20112011-132013-182013-1717 Jul 2018
C39 +ArqB+ArqBArqB
C50tv_off BBCBBBCB

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 9 Nov 11 and 23 Nov 11.

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

Analogue 1-4 250kW
SDN, ARQA, ARQB, BBCA, D3+4, BBCB(-4dB) 100kW
com7(-9.6dB) 27.4kW
com8(-10.2dB) 24kW
Mux 1*, Mux 2*, LNR(-14dB) 10kW
Mux A*, Mux B*, Mux C*, Mux D*(-17dB) 5kW
Analogue 5(-18dB) 4kW

Which companies have run the Channel 3 services in the Tacolneston 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. Tacolneston 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.

Saturday, 27 October 2012
John Nottage
8:18 AM

I'm in Southwold with my aerial looking at Tacolneston. I could also receive Aldeburgh. When Mobile 4G starts, even with a filter, could there be reception problems on Mux D3&4 on Ch59? (I'm very close to the water tower which is covered in Mobile Tx aerials!) If so, is there a system available whereby I could have 2 aerials pointing to Tacolneston & Aldeburgh, with some sort of aerial combiner mixing the signals so my receivers could be tuned into the strongest?

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John Nottage's 8 posts GB
John Nottage
8:36 AM

Sorry. I've found the answer elsewhere on your excellent website. I would need a channel 36 diplexer.

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John Nottage's 8 posts GB
Dave Lindsay

12:17 PM

John Nottage: Chances of interference will be lower as you aerial is horizontally polarised whereas 4G mobile signals will be vertically polarised.

Even if the mobile operators are going to be allowed to get away with supplying only one filter to each affected household, would it not be cheaper for you to buy additional filters? Or fit your filter at the aerial, before the feed is split to different rooms?

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
Thursday, 1 November 2012
Martin Engwell
1:52 PM

I live just outside Thetford and my TV aerial is in the loft and directed to Tacolneston. I regularly get 'blocky' interference when we have windy weather and have put this down to the presence of a very large eucalyptus tree in our neighbours garden which is directly aligned with the Tacolneston mast. Putting the aerial on the roof would not overcome the interference caused by the tree. Currently we are experiencing severe interference and loss of signal and I assume that this even poorer performance is due to the engineering work at Tacolneston right now. I am within range to the Thetford relay transmitter and the line of sight would be away from the offending tree. I could live with the reduced service if I got a reliable signal; so would it be worth realigning my aerial?

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Martin Engwell's 3 posts GB
Martin Engwell
2:16 PM

Further to my comment and question, it seems that I may be better off realigning to the Sudbury mast as this is the next best signal and requires the same type of aerial (horizontal). The Thetford mast would require a vertically polarised aerial. My question remains, should I realign my aerial (to Sudbury)?

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Martin Engwell's 3 posts GB
Dave Lindsay

2:26 PM

Martin Engwell: Thetford only carries Public Service (PSB) channels. It also uses Group A channels so a Group C/D or Group E aerial for Tacolneston won't really be suited to Thetford.

You say that putting the aerial on the roof won't overcome the interference caused by the tree. The signal outside will be stronger than in the loft, as it is higher up and doesn't have the roof tiles in the way.

I write here in general terms, as a non-professional.

For lots of information on reception, see A.T.V (Aerials And Television) TV Aerial, DAB Aerial, FM Aerial.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
Dave Lindsay

2:47 PM

Martin Engwell: You may end up no better off with Sudbury as with Thetford as the prediction is that you will likely only be able to receive its PSBs.

Of Sudbury's COMs, C56 and C58 are used by Waltham. C60 isn't used by Waltham, although it is used by Oxford and Belmont (which are further away). The prediction for it is "poor".

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
Monday, 5 November 2012
David Parr
8:58 AM

I have phoned Digital UK but got little satisfaction. My postcode is IP27 0HQ. Signals from Tacolneston, Norfolk. They are now non-existent. Been getting worse & worse since 3 weeks ago. I now have had no reception at all since 2nd November. Both Freeview & BT Box, Not one programme at all. My home system is correct, I have had it checked. Not picking up the signal from Sandy Heath either. What have the engineers done at Tacolneston? Damn disgrace.

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David Parr's 1 post GB
Friday, 9 November 2012
Martin Engwell
1:55 PM

Martin Engwell: Thank you, Dave Lindsay, for your helpful comments. I am currently suffering from very poor reception due, presumably to the engineering works at Tacolneston, and the reportedly low power output. I wonder, therefore, why it is that the BBC channels are most affected and the ITVchannels hardly at all. Another anomoly is that an old Philips small screen TV maintains a good reception but my much newer Samsung TVs suffer massively. Are the latter likely to be more sensitive to poor signal strength? In fairness, the latter do have a slightly longer cable run.

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Martin Engwell's 3 posts GB
Dave Lindsay

2:58 PM

Martin Engwell: There are 101 reasons why the picture on one multiplex is affected and not on another.

Digital reception is more an "all or nothing" system rather than analogue whose picture varies relative to the signal.

Take signal level for example. There is a threshold over which the signal level must be in order for a receiver to resolve a picture. Providing that the quality is good, then the picture will be exactly the same as if the signal strength were higher (but not above being too high such that it overwhelms the receiver).

Thus, a reduction in strength will not have any effect on the picture unless the reduction is greater than the amount that the level was above the threshold.

A reduction in strength with an analogue picture is likely to have some degree of detriment to its quality but may still be watchable.

Because the quality of a digital picture isn't analogous to signal strength, then the effect (or lack of) on the picture is therefore not necessarily the same as that on the signal.

So you could perhaps find that if you used the appropriate test gear that the signal level on all channels has changed but that this has only adversely affected the resolution of the pictures on the BBC mux.

Another factor is that not all channels will be exactly the same. As they propagate they will be reduced and refracted to different degrees.

It is possible that they are using the reserve antenna which is further down the mast and as such the path or line between it and you may be different and importantly there may be other objects that are affecting your reception that wouldn't otherwise do.

I said that there are 101 reasons; these are just a few possibilities. The length of the aerial cable and differences in the receivers are two others.

I'm not a professional, but I would certainly not dismiss mounting the aerial outside as then the signal will not be reduced and refracted by the roof which might be helpful. The professionals do say that reception is a black art, so "common sense" of increased height doesn't always pay off.

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB
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