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HD PVR? Check! HD Channels? No!!!

Discussion in 'Freeview Forum' started by kalifire, Aug 24, 2010.

  1. kalifire

    kalifire Member

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    My lovely new HD PVR arrived a few days ago and I love it. Sadly however, it doesn't do one pretty crucial thing - pick up HD channels.

    I am in London and receiving off the Crystal Palace receiver. I'm 11km away. Looking at digitaluk's site, I can see that the 'Mux HD' reception is at 100%. I have one aerial feed coming from an external rooftop aerial and SD channels come in fine.

    But the PVR doesn't even recognise the existence of HD channels and it's frustrating. I've read around a bit and heard things like I ought to do a 'manual tune on the UHF frequency' and so on - I have no idea what that means.

    Could anybody help with some basic tips? :lease:
  2. 961

    961 Active Member

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    If you read the manual you'll find that usually you get the option to do an auto digital tune. This scans the tv channels from 21 to 69 and when it picks up a signal it will automatically store that channel

    Sometimes this doesn't work correctly for a variety of reasons which we don't need bother about

    What you should find if you read the manual is a method of scanning one particular frequency to find which programmes are there which perhaps the tuner hasn't picked up

    The HD freeview programmes from the main crystal palace transmitter are on channel 31. If you manually scan that channel for freeview programmes it should find the BBC HD channel. The manual should tell you how to store the channel in your freeview box

    If that does not work you'll need to come back here with the results
  3. kalifire

    kalifire Member

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    That's great, thanks. I'll do that shortly and let you know what happens! Should it also find other HD channels?
  4. 961

    961 Active Member

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    Any that are currently available on freeview
  5. IanS

    IanS Member

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    If the HDR-Fox is the same as the HD-Fox (which it should be in this respect), the manual tune facility allows you to specify either DVB-T (for SD signals) or DVB-T2 (for HD signals). Make sure that you select DVB-T2.
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  6. kalifire

    kalifire Member

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    Thanks for the advise. I've followed it, and low and behold the HD channels are now loaded onto the machine!

    Now the problem is that they have a quality of 25% so they're unwatchable. The picture is constantly pixelated and bitty.

    Is there anything I can do to improve this?
  7. lbear

    lbear Active Member

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    Assuming the commands are the same as on the HD, here is the step by step process:

    Press "menu " and select each of these preferences by scrolling up or down and pressing the enter key

    Settings
    Installation (key in 0000 as the password)
    Manual Search


    Scroll to "channel",
    Press the right arrow on the remote to bring up the list (right side of the silver ring on remote)
    Scroll to 31 and press enter

    Scroll down to "transmission"
    If "DVB-T2" go to next step, if not press right arrow and select DVB-T2

    IF you have selected both Channel 31 and DVB-T2, both the on screen meter bars should light up. I have a communal aerial and am about 8Km from CP. My signal strength shows at 26% and quality 100%

    Scroll down to "Search" and press "OK" on the remote

    Your box will now search for all the HD channels on this frequency. You should currently get BBC HD, C4 HD and ITV1 HD. This should be very quick - well under 10 seconds in my case.

    The box should now have a "save" option highlighted. Press OK on your remote to save.
  8. lbear

    lbear Active Member

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    I assume you are reading the quality and not the signal strength and you have connected via HDMI lead to your TV (just checking)?

    First, are you passing the signal through any other equipment before the Humax, if so, put the HDR as the first in the daisy-chain and see if that clears it up.

    My immediate thoughts are your aerial lead and presumably you have unplugged it from your previous equipment and replaced it to your Humax. In doing so, you may well have dislodged the plug(s) so quickly check that one of the screening wires on the outside is not now touching the centre core.

    If you have a wall socket, check the lead is fully home and the plug at that end has not been similarly affected by the swap.
  9. Rodders53

    Rodders53 Active Member

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    What signal strength and quality is reported for the HD mux? What are the equivalent figures for the SD muxes?

    It's possible that you are on the edge of the digital cliff, and because the HD mux is transmitted at half the power of the others it is just too low to be received reliably? The advice given to check connections thoroughly and ensure the PVR is first in the chain is good and should be followed.

    Also try to ensure the aerial wires are kept apart from the mains and hdmi cables (as far as you can).
  10. kalifire

    kalifire Member

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    Will do. Thanks again for the advise - I'll report back later when I've had chance to experiment. The aerial lead is certainly clustered with other wires including mains and HDMIs so I'll sort that straight away.

    I can tell you already that the signal strength reading is 25% and the quality was 100% for HD, but I don't know the equivilent for SD channels.

    Incidentally, why is HD mux transmitted at half the power of SD? Surely it should be the other way around? I've also heard that the Crystal Palace transmitter isn't very strong compared to others - is that likely to change?
  11. Rodders53

    Rodders53 Active Member

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    The HD mux is a temporary service.... limited to avoid causing interference to other existing services..... It will change at switchover (2012 in London).

    Also as the HD transmission method is more robust and can be OK at lower levels cf the SD method it is possible to get away with the lower levels, generally.

    25% level is probably just too low.... your SDs will be in the 30s (probably) but are only just OK. You most likely need to improve the aerial, or perhaps amplify the signal, to get away from the digital cliff edge. If one of the aerial leads/plugs is dodgy it might improve the signal seen by the receiver - so do go over them thoroughly first.
  12. lbear

    lbear Active Member

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    It's not so much clutter among the wires (though you could be getting interference if your aerial lead is not too well isolated) as the plugs. These tend to be the places where the shielding frays and touches the internal core - also make sure that heavy internal wire goes properly into the central piece of the plug.

    Yes the HD mux at CP is on about half the power of the others. This is because they had to slot in an additional frequency to carry HD early, Remember they also have the five analogue signals still up together with six SD digital muxes. This meant that there could be interference problems with other transmitter sites if the HD signal was too strong - the limit on analogue stations was after all 5 nationally. I am afraid the current low signal is a consequence of the early start to HD in our region.

    The situation should resolve in 2012 with digital switchover. The frequency will change from UHF channel 31 to 30 and the power will be turned right up. There is also due to be a new relay site at Woolwich to cope with local reception problems.
  13. MarkE19

    MarkE19 Moderator

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    If you just mean the HD channels then I think that has already been answered. But if you mean the SD channels then I think you have been missinformed as Crystal Palace is one of the strongest signals (20kw) covering a much larger area & population than most tranmitters. But once the analogue channels have stopped being transmitted in 2012 the power for the SD channels is due to increase by around 10x and even the HD channels will then be brought in line with the power of the others.

    Mark.
  14. lbear

    lbear Active Member

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    You are obvious just at the cliff edge for the tuners. My signal strength on my HD is 26% - as your's is 25% it will just need a small amplifier or amplifier/distributer to solve your problems with the HD signal as a temporary measure. A couple of examples at a reasonable price:
    Booster - Boosting signal for one or 2 TVs - Tesco.Direct
    7dayshop.com - Online Store
  15. kalifire

    kalifire Member

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    Many thanks for the replies. When I switched on the TV last night to sort all this out, I found the HD channels were being received perfectly. Weird! I'm not sure why that is, or if it's temporary, so if the signal goes again, I'll buy one of the signal booster things linked to above, then wait until 2012!
  16. kalifire

    kalifire Member

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    Hmm, ok - small update.

    The HD channels are not being received properly. I think I'll buy myself one of those signal boosters mentioned earlier this thread, and if they don't work, I'll just wait until I move into a better area (or until 2012).

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