Recent changes on the VM Network

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  • Perhaps being rolled into newer Viacom apps when they are added? I hadn't even noticed there was a Nick Jr app.

  • Summary of NIT Linkage (Tivo download) updates for the last few weekends:


    Date Region Change Type
    25/10/2019 TTA Knowsley DMC (Hayes_RHE) NIT Linkage level 3 & 4 updates. (2 changes) - Cisco models
    26/10/2019 TTA Knowsley DMC (Hayes_RHE) NIT Linkage level 3 & 4 updates. (2 changes) - Samsung models (delayed)
    26/10/2019 Various Networks NIT Linkage level 1 & 3 updates (52 changes)
    01/11/2019 TTA Knowsley DMC (Hayes_RHE) NIT Linkage level 3 updates. (2 changes)
    02/11/2019 Various Networks NIT Linkage level 1 & 3 updates (52 changes)
    08/11/2019 TTA Knowsley DMC (Hayes_RHE) NIT Linkage level 3 & 4 updates. (4 changes)
    09/11/2019 Various Networks NIT Linkage level 1 & 3 updates (52 changes)


    The summary is for the ex-Telewest & ex-C&W networks. Data is not available for the ex-NTL Langley networks.

  • Perhaps being rolled into newer Viacom apps when they are added? I hadn't even noticed there was a Nick Jr app.

    And don't forget the CBS-Viacom re-merger which completes next month which may eventually affect existing services.

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  • Looks like VM are starting de-commisioning the Cisco VHD boxes from the end of this month. Just had an offer through to upgrade to a TIVO FOC with the advice that the Cisco box will start to lose functions progressively.


    We don't really need the recording function, just not enough stuff that we want to watch, but at least the TIVO still has a SCART type output as well as the HDMI so we can continue with the DVD recorder and RF modulator setup.

    History is much like an Endless Waltz. The three beats of war, peace and revolution continue on forever.

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  • Looks like VM are starting de-commisioning the Cisco VHD boxes from the end of this month. Just had an offer through to upgrade to a TIVO FOC with the advice that the Cisco box will start to lose functions progressively.


    We don't really need the recording function, just not enough stuff that we want to watch, but at least the TIVO still has a SCART type output as well as the HDMI so we can continue with the DVD recorder and RF modulator setup.

    RF stands for Radio Frequency doesn't it? What do they actually do and why would you want one?


    I've seen RF modulators mentioned for years, in a TV context, though less so recently, and I'm curious.

  • RF stands for Radio Frequency doesn't it? What do they actually do and why would you want one?


    I've seen RF modulators mentioned for years, in a TV context, though less so recently, and I'm curious.

    RF is Radio frequency and ours is set to channel 52. This is commonly the one used by VCRs etc.


    Our house is wired in each room with a TV antenna outlet fed from a distibution amplifier/splitter. The modulator converts the SCART signal to one that feeds these sockets this is combined with the Freeview signals from a loft antenna and the DVD recorder output.


    Nowadays people tend to have multiple TIVO or V6 setups but historically you only had one STB.

    History is much like an Endless Waltz. The three beats of war, peace and revolution continue on forever.

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  • And don't forget the CBS-Viacom re-merger which completes next month which may eventually affect existing services.

    True but I'm not sure how much it will affect services in the short term. CBS doesn't seem to be closely involved with UK "direct" broadcasting at the moment.

  • Looks like VM are starting de-commisioning the Cisco VHD boxes from the end of this month. Just had an offer through to upgrade to a TIVO FOC with the advice that the Cisco box will start to lose functions progressively.


    We don't really need the recording function, just not enough stuff that we want to watch, but at least the TIVO still has a SCART type output as well as the HDMI so we can continue with the DVD recorder and RF modulator setup.

    I'm wondering how long it will be before they start to withdraw and replace the original Tivo models. At the moment, they are still needed for customers not taking broadband services but there is always the option of converting one of the V6 tuners to a cable modem. On that note, there has been a support download service named "DL_Sam_TiVoBL_16MB_CM" for some time. Maybe that could be a test configuration for the V6 with an internal cable modem? Just a guess, nobody has actually tried to see what the newer "TiVoBL" services actually do. Any guesses at what "BL" means? Boot Loader perhaps? maybe not... The V6 should get firmware upgrades online rather than through DVB / NIT linkage.


    If anyone wants to join the guessing game, there's also "TivoSBE" and "TivoPF", these are also used in the support service names. So "SBE" and "PF" anyone?

  • No changes for Sunday or Monday, not even the annoying sport flags.


    Off topic but, hopefully, this will be a quiet week for VM as I am covering for absence on the DTT side of things and this is going to be a busy week with Freeview frequency changes due in some areas. That should be interesting as, after the changes, Bilsdale will be co-channel with Sheffield, so I probably won't even be able to see what is happening there. With all of the frequency changes scheduled for Nov 13th, you would think that Digital UK would schedule other retunes for the same date. Of course, that would be too easy and it looks like a further retune will be needed on Nov 14th when E4 +1 moves to a different multiplex.

  • RF is Radio frequency and ours is set to channel 52. This is commonly the one used by VCRs etc.


    Our house is wired in each room with a TV antenna outlet fed from a distibution amplifier/splitter. The modulator converts the SCART signal to one that feeds these sockets this is combined with the Freeview signals from a loft antenna and the DVD recorder output.


    Nowadays people tend to have multiple TIVO or V6 setups but historically you only had one STB.

    Ah. Thanks. :)


    I think I read about this once but I didn't put two and two together. My mind was thinking about the earlier days of games consoles and the adapters back then and I forgot it had other uses.


    So are all different techs set to the one channel (52 in your case) or do you have say 52 for Cable, 58 for DVD and Freeview just forwards on whatever frequencies are used in your local area?

  • No changes for Sunday or Monday, not even the annoying sport flags.


    Off topic but, hopefully, this will be a quiet week for VM as I am covering for absence on the DTT side of things and this is going to be a busy week with Freeview frequency changes due in some areas. That should be interesting as, after the changes, Bilsdale will be co-channel with Sheffield, so I probably won't even be able to see what is happening there. With all of the frequency changes scheduled for Nov 13th, you would think that Digital UK would schedule other retunes for the same date. Of course, that would be too easy and it looks like a further retune will be needed on Nov 14th when E4 +1 moves to a different multiplex.

    So are you a DTT expert then JJ20X?

  • So are all different techs set to the one channel (52 in your case) or do you have say 52 for Cable, 58 for DVD and Freeview just forwards on whatever frequencies are used in your local area?

    The DVD doesn't have a specific RF output, when in standby it re transmits the input SCART (from the Cisco box) to the output SCART. When a DVD or HDD recording is playing back it substitutes that for the cable channel. The DVD to TV is component video (RGB) and L+R sound. Ouputs 576p here whilst outputting interlaced 576i on the SCART. Don't you just love Sony kit.

    History is much like an Endless Waltz. The three beats of war, peace and revolution continue on forever.

    4312-gwban-gif

    If my post is in this colour  it is moderation. Take note.

  • The DVD doesn't have a specific RF output, when in standby it re transmits the input SCART (from the Cisco box) to the output SCART. When a DVD or HDD recording is playing back it substitutes that for the cable channel. The DVD to TV is component video (RGB) and L+R sound. Ouputs 576p here whilst outputting interlaced 576i on the SCART. Don't you just love Sony kit.

    Yes. Even though they make some strange choices sometimes. ^^

  • No changes for Sunday or Monday, not even the annoying sport flags.


    Off topic but, hopefully, this will be a quiet week for VM as I am covering for absence on the DTT side of things and this is going to be a busy week with Freeview frequency changes due in some areas. That should be interesting as, after the changes, Bilsdale will be co-channel with Sheffield, so I probably won't even be able to see what is happening there. With all of the frequency changes scheduled for Nov 13th, you would think that Digital UK would schedule other retunes for the same date. Of course, that would be too easy and it looks like a further retune will be needed on Nov 14th when E4 +1 moves to a different multiplex.

    There aren't any Freeview threads here yet....:whistling:

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  • So are you a DTT expert then JJ20X?

    Maybe if it was 2014. DTT has been fairly difficult to track since we lost telemetry data for the regions. At the moment, it's relatively easy to extract a lot of the information (SIDs) etc as most of that information is carried on COM 7 & COM 8. (They have to carry national information as they operate as an SFN.) As they are gradually withdrawn, things will be very difficult. Data for Cumbria and the South West has already been removed as the multiplexes have been removed from those regions. Data for minor Freeview Light regions, such as the Channel Islands and South Lakeland has never been included - they were beyond the COM7/8 footprint.


    A lot of the information we had back in 2014 no longer exists. They use different systems now but I don't know how they can keep everything up to date without some of the systems we used to have. I'll be covering Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and the East Midlands regions until the end of November, then I'll make my escape. Maybe I'll try to kickstart some of the old systems while I'm involved, assuming that it won't take too much time.

  • Maybe if it was 2014. DTT has been fairly difficult to track since we lost telemetry data for the regions. At the moment, it's relatively easy to extract a lot of the information (SIDs) etc as most of that information is carried on COM 7 & COM 8. (They have to carry national information as they operate as an SFN.) As they are gradually withdrawn, things will be very difficult. Data for Cumbria and the South West has already been removed as the multiplexes have been removed from those regions. Data for minor Freeview Light regions, such as the Channel Islands and South Lakeland has never been included - they were beyond the COM7/8 footprint.


    A lot of the information we had back in 2014 no longer exists. They use different systems now but I don't know how they can keep everything up to date without some of the systems we used to have. I'll be covering Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and the East Midlands regions until the end of November, then I'll make my escape. Maybe I'll try to kickstart some of the old systems while I'm involved, assuming that it won't take too much time.

    Do you think there's any potential, or point, in them making any of the main 6 multiplexes SFN at any point in the future? I've heard various ideas on the matter, with some pros and cons, but I'm interested what you think JJ20X.

  • There aren't any Freeview threads here yet....:whistling:

    I think one would be useful as it's the most popular platform in the UK. Even those with pay TV often have it in secondary rooms. I'd create one, but I don't know enough about it.

  • Don't get me started... 8o:S8)


    I think one would be useful as it's the most popular platform in the UK. Even those with pay TV often have it in secondary rooms. I'd create one, but I don't know enough about it.

    Go for it fellas.:)


    I've got freeview, but as I use VM, I rarely switch over to it and so not up with latest events. I hope to one day have a site like Digital Spy (minus all the crap) with separate forums for Sky, Freeview etc.

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  • Do you think there's any potential, or point, in them making any of the main 6 multiplexes SFN at any point in the future? I've heard various ideas on the matter, with some pros and cons, but I'm interested what you think JJ20X.

    There will be a lot of regional SFNs across the country as frequencies are withdrawn, simply because there will no longer be enough frequencies available for each relay to have a unique frequency.


    As far as national SFNs are concerned, they aren't really a good idea as the existing transmitters aren't in the right places to do that effectively and it would create too many mush zones. National SFNs aren't possible where any of the content (including data) is different, so that rules out the 3 regional multiplexes and SDN to some point as that has 4 regions. Northern Ireland has different versions of everything, so that excludes it from any UK wide SFNs. If the remaining Arqiva COM 5/6 multiplexes continue to use DVB-T, that rules them out. National SFNs simply aren't going to work with DVB-T. Even if they convert to DVB-T2, the transmitters are still in the wrong places and it's extremely unlikely that a new transmitter network will be built for DTT. Let's see how many mush zones are created when COM 7/8 start to operate as SFNs across the country. This is possibly why some of the lower powered transmitters are being withdrawn. Working out suitable timings for each transmitter to work optimally within the chosen guard interval isn't going to be easy.

  • Go for it fellas.:)


    I've got freeview, but as I use VM, I rarely switch over to it and so not up with latest events. I hope to one day have a site like Digital Spy (minus all the crap) with separate forums for Sky, Freeview etc.

    Just think of all the fantasy EPG threads. ^^

  • Frequency changes were logged overnight for the Birmingham TDN regional network, with a couple of frequencies at the upper range of the regular ex-Telewest frequency range being used. It's unusual for the TDNs to extend into that frequency range, maybe suggesting a network upgrade in that area. Transport streams changing frequency were: TSIDs 2, 3, 4, 5, 25, 26, 27, 29, 30, 31 & 32. The unusual gaps left in the frequency map suggest that this may be step 1 of a phased change.


    Other overnight changes: Sport flags.

  • There will be a lot of regional SFNs across the country as frequencies are withdrawn, simply because there will no longer be enough frequencies available for each relay to have a unique frequency.


    As far as national SFNs are concerned, they aren't really a good idea as the existing transmitters aren't in the right places to do that effectively and it would create too many mush zones. National SFNs aren't possible where any of the content (including data) is different, so that rules out the 3 regional multiplexes and SDN to some point as that has 4 regions. Northern Ireland has different versions of everything, so that excludes it from any UK wide SFNs. If the remaining Arqiva COM 5/6 multiplexes continue to use DVB-T, that rules them out. National SFNs simply aren't going to work with DVB-T. Even if they convert to DVB-T2, the transmitters are still in the wrong places and it's extremely unlikely that a new transmitter network will be built for DTT. Let's see how many mush zones are created when COM 7/8 start to operate as SFNs across the country. This is possibly why some of the lower powered transmitters are being withdrawn. Working out suitable timings for each transmitter to work optimally within the chosen guard interval isn't going to be easy.

    Great, and thorough, answer JJ20X. Thanks.


    It raises a few follow up questions though.


    1) SDN has 4 regions? I can only think of Wales, and Everybody Else. What are the others?


    2) Why is DVB-T2 better suited to SFNs?


    3) Are you sure about Com7/8? I'm pretty sure they already are Single Frequency Networks and are on Ch55 and Ch56 at all their (limited) locations.


    As for the rest, that echoes others thoughts I've read.


  • 1) SDN: TSID 12293 Scotland, TSID 12294 England, TSID 12295 Wales, TSID 12296 Northern Ireland

    Although the same services are carried in England, Scotland & N. Ireland, they each have a unique TSID, which means the data is different so they cannot operate as a UK wide SFN.


    2) DVB-T2 is more efficient. SFNs with DVB-T would need a lot of low power transmitters rather than the few high power transmitters we currently have. It's all to do with error correction and the guard interval. A bit too technical for this thread.


    3) There are still a lot of locations where COM 7/8 have not yet transferred to Ch 55/56. Speaking of which, I'm not sure of what is happening locally. Emley Moor & Belmont COM 8 multiplexes were supposed to transfer to the new frequency in October. Emley Moor has definitely moved to the new frequency, Belmont still appears to be on the old frequency. Whether Belmont is operating on both frequencies or Digital UK rescheduled the dates is something I don't know (I wasn't dealing with DTT in October). It doesn't help that the Digital UK website has been closed and rolled into the Freeview website and that some of the links to the PDF files are broken. Basically, total chaos...

  • Interesting. Ta. :)


    Re: 2)

    Does that mean that PSB3 signal carries better than PSB1 & PSB2 then? Do they run at lower power to ensure it doesn't transmit further than the two DVB-T multiplexes? I was a bit surprised by your answer on this one as I thought the efficiency was that it had more bandwidth to fit content in, not that it travelled better.

  • Interesting. Ta. :)


    Re: 2)

    Does that mean that PSB3 signal carries better than PSB1 & PSB2 then? Do they run at lower power to ensure it doesn't transmit further than the two DVB-T multiplexes? I was a bit surprised by your answer on this one as I thought the efficiency was that it had more bandwidth to fit content in, not that it travelled better.

    The radio waves don't change and the signal doesn't transmit further. The efficiency does, indeed allow for a higher bitrate, so more data can be carried. It also allows for more effective error correction. Where the signal would break down under DVB-T, better error correction could allow it to be usable with DVB-T2. There is a trade off between capacity and error correction, and the guard interval. Increasing the guard interval will facilitate operation as a SFN, but not without reducing the number of services that can be carried.


    Think of the local multiplexes, which use a different type of modulation to make the signal more robust at low power. As a trade off, they carry far fewer services than the standard DVB-T multiplexes.

  • Think of the local multiplexes, which use a different type of modulation to make the signal more robust at low power. As a trade off, they carry far fewer services than the standard DVB-T multiplexes.

    You are psychic JJ20X! I've been wanting to know those two things about Local multiplexes for a while. Many thanks. 8)


    :thumbup:

  • The NIT CDS and NIT root analysts probably think they are immune to these changes, as the USID doesn't affect them. It will be interesting to see how they react when the VOD frequency sections are transferred from the NIT root to the NIT CDS database and NIT Linkage is (possibly) moved out to its own database. Although, that should leave the NIT root analysts with nothing to do...

    The NIT root analysts were fairly happy with the proposed changes. NIT Linkage has now been split off into its own analysis database. VOD frequency data stays in the NIT Root analysis but the frequency data is extracted at an earlier stage and passed to the NIT CDS database to complete the frequency map.