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# 19277 11-Feb-2008 20:21
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With terrestrial digital being launched this year, has anyone heard whether there are going to be any moves to introduce digital radio? (DVB)  It's hardly like this is new technology, I remember it being plugged when I was in Germany in 2001, that's 7 years ago!!

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# 109984 11-Feb-2008 21:32
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allstarnz: With terrestrial digital being launched this year, has anyone heard whether there are going to be any moves to introduce digital radio? (DVB)  It's hardly like this is new technology, I remember it being plugged when I was in Germany in 2001, that's 7 years ago!!


There was an article about it on Stuff.co.nz a month or two ago. The article was focused on the fact that Mediaworks and The Radio Network are backing different technologies, meaning that people who want to listen to stations on both networks would need to purchase two different digital radio devices.

I don't recall any further detail so I don't know the timeframe for implementing this technology.

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  # 109989 11-Feb-2008 21:52
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I'm assuming you mean DAB digital radio?

There was a trial in Wellington for some time but as Alasta just pointed out there is a bit of a fight developing with TRN wanting to use the US developed HD Radio standard since it can be transmitted using existing FM bands whereas DAB is broadcast in the VHF Hi TV band. Some people are a bit suspicious that TRN have a motive here because if they could sway existing broadcasters to adopt HD Radio and stop the introduction of DAB then there would not be an influx of new radio stations since they are at present unable to acquire FM spectrum. If DAB was introduced then we would likely see quite a large number of new stations appear and existing stations expand beyond their current markets which would obviously hurt TRN and MediaWorks.

There was talk of any DAB rollout in New Zealand using the DAB+ format which is far more efficient than the original DAB standard but obviously many older receivers that can't do DAB+ won't work here.




 
 
 
 




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  # 109999 11-Feb-2008 22:30
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sbiddle: I'm assuming you mean DAB digital radio?

There was a trial in Wellington for some time but as Alasta just pointed out there is a bit of a fight developing with TRN wanting to use the US developed HD Radio standard since it can be transmitted using existing FM bands whereas DAB is broadcast in the VHF Hi TV band. Some people are a bit suspicious that TRN have a motive here because if they could sway existing broadcasters to adopt HD Radio and stop the introduction of DAB then there would not be an influx of new radio stations since they are at present unable to acquire FM spectrum. If DAB was introduced then we would likely see quite a large number of new stations appear and existing stations expand beyond their current markets which would obviously hurt TRN and MediaWorks.

There was talk of any DAB rollout in New Zealand using the DAB+ format which is far more efficient than the original DAB standard but obviously many older receivers that can't do DAB+ won't work here.



Yeah, I meant DAB, it was a typo Smile Simply from my little knowledge on the matter, i mean what the BBC use to broadcast Five Live Sports Extra and a couple of their other stations.

Personally on what you'd said, i'd rather see DAB, it'd see more channels rather than the exisiting stuff in a different format. Currently there is not enough diversity in radio, and also not enough spectrum for new markets and niche channels. Also if I understand you correctly, DAB could use a lot of the spectrum which is currently utilised by analogue TV?

You'd think they'd learn not to adopt some propreitary technology mainly used in the USA, as it can really come back and bit you eh!! Wink

Thanks for the info guys.

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  # 110087 12-Feb-2008 14:27
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It's not that "Mediaworks and The Radio Network are backing different technologies", it is that they (along with the rest of the Radio Broadcast Association members) want different technology to what Kordia (the Government owned Nation-wide TV & Radio broadcasting company) is trialing with RNZ Concert and National, for the reasons mentioned above.

TRN & RBA are trialing a Country Music station on 106.2FM in Auckland which broadcasts on normal FM and HD Radio at the same time.  Funny to note that all radio transmissions in Auckland come from the Sky Tower which is one of the only (and biggest main site) in NZ that isn't run by Kordia, this is how they are able to trial HD without agreement from the Government.

Analouge TV won't be switched off 'til 2012, but Kordia want to have a limited commercial service launched by the end of 2008.

Full story:  http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/4317187a28.html

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  # 110088 12-Feb-2008 14:41
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Funny to note that all radio transmissions in Auckland come from the Sky Tower which is one of the only (and biggest main site) in NZ that isn't run by Kordia, this is this how they are able to trial HD without agreement from the Government.


Is this true, its been a fair few years since I left the employment of the BCNZ but there was a significant level of BII FM Txs housed at Waitarua including ConcertFM, have these been moved to the Sky tower?

Cyril

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  # 110107 12-Feb-2008 16:56
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Yes, all FM that was at Waiatarua is now at the Sky Tower.  Also some other transmissions from wierd locations around the city such as Eden Tce etc (BFM and 1 or 2 others I think).  MORE FM was the first to move in about 1999, then the rest moved because they were being wiped out in the city and it snow-balled.  Then they were able to do 0.4 MHZ spacing because they were co-located.  They have 20+ FM transmissions now, which is the most from one location in the world I think.  I believe JDA run everything at Sky Tower.

Oh I just found that they operate Ruru as well!

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  # 110112 12-Feb-2008 17:05
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Facinating, thanks for that update.

Cyril

 
 
 
 


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  # 110164 12-Feb-2008 20:17
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pjamieson: Yes, all FM that was at Waiatarua is now at the Sky Tower. Also some other transmissions from wierd locations around the city such as Eden Tce etc (BFM and 1 or 2 others I think). MORE FM was the first to move in about 1999, then the rest moved because they were being wiped out in the city and it snow-balled. Then they were able to do 0.4 MHZ spacing because they were co-located. They have 20+ FM transmissions now, which is the most from one location in the world I think. I believe JDA run everything at Sky Tower.

Oh I just found that they operate Ruru as well!


Also the reason that band expanders on cars and cheap crap FM radios dont work too well in auckland.

bFM was out west before they moved to the skytower. They were the first because my mate worked there at the time and loads of people could no longer get it when they first moved. I lost it in beach haven. But yeah, they ended up killing reception in the cbd, the bays, northcote, devonport etc for a lot of people with junk radios or band expanders so the others had to move as well. And tv installers had a great time installing FM traps on distribution systems.

The xtian station was the last to move. It was the only station that I could get here without an outdoor antenna so needless to say the tuner on the downstairs stereos have seen very little use since that day.

HD radio makes more sense then DAB for in car use since cars already have band2 antennas on them, whereas the upper reaches of band 3 are going to be well cutoff by any antenna amplifiers - you just have to look at how bad the upper end of the fm band work on a jap import to see how much out of band filtering that car antenna amplifiers have, and they need it since there is loads of stuff just above and below the broadcast band that would bleed thru if it wasnt there.

DAB can have a single frequancy network which I didnt know before the presentation to the LPFM society, whereas HDRadio cant. Thats a huge advantage in DABs favor in auckland with the crap FM coverage that there is when driving around.




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  # 110964 16-Feb-2008 14:27
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Oh yes you might be right.  It was 96.1 that was in Eden Tce.  I thought More FM were first, but according to their license details BFM were given the first license a month earlier than More.  And yes Life 99.8 have the last license.  I think National Radio were about the third to move on 92.6, due to interference from More 91.8.  Anyway, going right OTT now.

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  # 111005 16-Feb-2008 18:18
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I just hope that the 0.4 spacing becomes the norm when all the licenses come up for renewal since more channles is good for everyone. The chanel sharing with the waikato seems to work well enough for 93.8. Then once they get hdradio running on all of them I hope that we will see some real diversity in station selectoin.




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  # 111120 17-Feb-2008 10:41
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I agree 0.4 should be the norm, I don't think the majority should be held back by the few that have cheap radios.  I think it will be happening (although not fully) before 2011...

The Ministry of Economic Development has recently published a technical feasibility study commissioned into the use of a narrower channel spacing of 400 kHz in the FM broadcasting band...  http://news.business.govt.nz/news/info/rsm/article/5351

What I don't know is how this affects HD?  Will that mean they can't squeeze in as much (is it 1 Analog and 3 HD on a single frequency)?

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  # 112503 23-Feb-2008 17:12
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Actually, the first poster (allstarnz) was very close to the mark.

My Mercedes has a Digital TV tuner, and since December last year has been able to tune in to four DVB-T Radio channels. The are labelled RNZ National, RNZ Concert, Radio Reserved 1, and Radio Reserved 2.  But, I can not hear any audio.  I suspect Kordia is broadcasting tests in MPEG-4, but the receiver can only decode MPEG-2 broadcasts.
These are part of the DTT service rolling out this year. These transmissions re coming from Mt Te Aroha.


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  # 112506 23-Feb-2008 17:23
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Ummmm I suspect your Merc has a DAB tuner or do you really mean a DVB (for video) one, if it is a TV then dont look at it while driving as its illegal both here and in Europe.

Assuming it is a DAB one (which I suspect it is) then there is DAB test transmission off Waitarua and KauKau (Wellington) however they are using the newer AAC+ coder which the older DAB as is/was used in Germany did not use, instead it used AAC.

DAB=Digital Audio Broadcasting. DVB=Digital Video Broadcasting.

That said as we all know both the DVB-S DTH and DVB-T DTT services will/are carrying ConcertFM, NatRadio and others.

Cyril

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  # 112511 23-Feb-2008 17:48
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Thanks Cyril

The Merc definitely has a DVB-T digital/analogue tuner.   It does not receive DAB. These are DVB-T radio channels (much larger bandwidth than DAB or DAB+).  And don't panic, the TV image switches off above 3km/h but the audio stays on.

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  # 112537 23-Feb-2008 19:19
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Stand corrected, my Coon dont do none of those flash things.

Cheers
Cyril

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