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<  General Toppy discussions  ~  Will my Toppy stop working in 2017?

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caned_monkey
Posted: Thu Oct 01, 2015 11:53 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 12 Oct 2009 Posts: 107 Location: London
Hello,

I heard a rumour a while back that due to changes in how Freeview was being broadcast, the Toppy would stop working in 2017.

Is this true/still the case?

Thanks
Steven

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mstombs
Posted: Thu Oct 01, 2015 1:48 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 31 Dec 2006 Posts: 935
Not a rumour that days are numbered, but details are still subject to confirmation, the 700MHz band will be cleared, and we will have fewer all HD DVB-T2/MPEG4 muxes. It is sometimes referred to as DSO2, some areas will need different band antennas, and they may keep the PSB muxes alive longer during the transition?

http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/consultations/700MHz/

you can still comment on how this will be done

http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/consultations/700-code-practice/

Quote:
Clearance of the 700MHz band is due to be completed by 2022


Likely to take up to 4 years to complete, so first areas death to Toppy in 2018?

Of course we were fortunate to have R2-D2 on the case for our Toppies to survive the 'SplitNit' technical change that killed SetPal freeeview boxes, and the fact that we can still work with the current bloated epg is thanks to GB... It is possible that further technical changes will hurt us before the SD broadcasts are turned off.

Will their be further life in Toppies by pooling our collective existing rec files....?
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nwhitfield
Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2015 12:52 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9567 Location: London
The changeover to T2 is likely to take quite a while; I just blogged about this - Freeview will require T2 on new kit from Jan 2016 if it has a screen larger than 32 inches, and on all kit from Jan 2017.

So, it's likely to be some time after that before they start moving anything over. You'll probably have until at least 2020, I should think - by which time the first UK Toppies will be 15 years old.

http://gonedigital.net/2015/09/24/a-long-awaited-move-to-t2/

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gomezz
Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2015 2:59 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 18 Nov 2005 Posts: 3963 Location: Buckingham
What of the notion that one MUX should remain as a legacy T1 to host the main channels?

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nwhitfield
Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2015 3:30 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9567 Location: London
Well, it's hard to be sure. Until there's more honest discussion about what exactly will happen, we simply don't know.

The announcement of the change has been described, as I note in my blog post, in terms of HD primarily, probably because that's an easier sell to the punters. Though, of course, the chances of them getting any more HD channels are pretty slim, I would have thought.

It's possible that there would be a single mux with T1/MPEG2 for the core PSB channels, but we won't know that for certain until someone comes up with a real plan that sets out the migration to T2.

Right now, of course, we don't even know for certain which channels will still be PSBs, because the government make want to partially dismember the BBC, and is talking about privatising Channel 4 as well. Channel Five has some PSB obligations thanks to its origins, but will a new owner want to maintain those?

Then there's Ofcom; they've decided to whack up the fees for spectrum that they charge to mobile companies. If they decide to do the same in the TV range, who knows what the result may be?

Will PSBs still be gifted spectrum in a few years time? Will commercial mux operators have to charge more for carriage?

A lot of this is still unknown. Given the Freeview spec changes, all but the smallest sets will be T2 capable from January; everything will be from early 2017. If you set a date in 2022 to switch all stuff to T2 and obsolete T1/MPEG2 kit, any kit that is not capable of receiving it will be at least five years old, and a substantial chunk over six years old (anything larger than 32 inches).

Freeview HD itself will be over ten years old by then (having started in 2010), and so the majority of households will contain at least one receiver. Realisitically, except at the very bottom of the market, it's already hard to find sets that don't have T2/H.264 built in.

So, it's easy to see how a view could be taken that by 2022 there would be no need to keep anything running in T1/MPEG2 mode.

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mstombs
Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2015 6:33 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 31 Dec 2006 Posts: 935
Isn't there a chance the current UK variant DVB-T2 will itself be obsolete by 2022? I recall Norway jumped to a next-gen version? How many current smart TVs will be able to access IPTV catch-up services by then?
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nwhitfield
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2015 10:35 am Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9567 Location: London
Nope; there's no work being done on a successor to DVB-T2 at the moment.

Some countries (principally Germany) are thinking about using H.265, but that will be over DVB-T2 as well. However, there's presently a massive question mark regarding H.265/HEVC and royalties, which may well kill it dead as far as broadcasters are concerned.

One of the key specs in the latest D-Book (which I think is required for the new Freeview certification) is support for IPTV services which can be accessed directly from the EPG. Most new Freeview kit will have the rewindable EPG too.

Of course, most of the country still won't have decent broadband by then...

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nwhitfield
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2015 12:34 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9567 Location: London
Slightly fuller fleshed out thoughts on this:

http://gonedigital.net/2015/10/05/when-will-your-freeview-box-stop-working/

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gomezz
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2015 8:13 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 18 Nov 2005 Posts: 3963 Location: Buckingham
What of the masses of old small TV sets in hotels and guest houses? I don't expect they will be happy to have to replace all of those with DVB-T2 models.

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nwhitfield
Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2015 2:05 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 20 Mar 2005 Posts: 9567 Location: London
Possibly not; though I don't know what the typical working life of a set in a place like that is... some of them may well be getting quite old by then.

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juwlz
Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2015 2:11 pm Reply with quote
MyStuff Team Joined: 12 Aug 2005 Posts: 10802 Location: Wokingham, Berkshire (Hannington transmitter)
I'm guessing they'll need to add STBs, in the same way that Set Top Boxes were used when we went digital in the first place.

Julie

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gomezz
Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2015 7:28 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 18 Nov 2005 Posts: 3963 Location: Buckingham
Or maybe the ones who stuck with analogue TV sets fed with a bank of STB each tuned to one of the main channels and outputting on a different RF frequency will be able to get a few new STBs which support DVB-T2? But are the any which have RF output these days?

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Bizman
Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 3:35 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 06 Apr 2010 Posts: 1699
gomezz wrote:
But are the any which have RF output these days?
My VCR has so I will hang on to it for a bit longer.

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misterp
Posted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 10:08 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 10 Jan 2006 Posts: 402 Location: Hull
Any update on this?

Steve

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Bizman
Posted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:42 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 06 Apr 2010 Posts: 1699
I posted in another topic that the SD transmissions will continue until at least 2022. Can't remember where I got the original info from, think it was an Ofcom document.

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