Nationwide Freeview tune-up takes place today
Check your channels
You’ve probably been ignoring that ‘retune now’ message on your TV for weeks, but if you don’t do it today then you risk losing endless Top Gear repeats, the Hollyoaks omnibus on Channel 4+1 and all those home shopping channels.
Freeview has designated today National Retune Day, sort of. Essentially, the Freeview service is being given a technical overhaul and anyone who doesn’t retune their Freeview TV or set-up box risks losing channels.
Much of the retune is related to “technical preparations”, the body said, for the impending digital switchover and the rollout of Freeview HD.
Gadget Show fans will be pleased to hear that the retune will make Channel Five more widely available.
A new channel called Quest will also be delivered onto you telly, post retune. Quest is run by Discovery Networks UK, so expect a smattering of Discovery Channel-esque content.
Viewers are advised to retune from lunchtime today, Freeview said. Further information and retuning guides for specific makes and models of TV can be found online. ®
Where have the good stbs gone?
We're on our 4th stb (each from different manufacturers) since digital became available in our area. None of the 3 we had to discard physically broke but each stopped working properly due to poor programming that failed as as the broadcast signal changed (resulting in missing EPG and now/next info, random crashes, refusal to come out of standby etc etc). We now use an tvonics mdr-250. It's the first unit we've had that works reliably and without any issues (apart from subtitles sometimes not appearing or going out of sync - but I think that may be a problem with the broadcast stream rather than the unit itself)
A free market, laissez faire approach has utterly failed for stbs. Rather than competition resulting in better boxes the manufacturers have engaged in a race to the bottom. Flaky, slow and difficult to navigate software is the norm, years after the digital launch.
STBs need to be tightly regulated and not allowed on the market if they don't *fully* comply with the digital TV standards (even the obscure bits not currently in use) that may mean a few of the £15 supermarket specials will disappear but at least I won't have to replace my stb each time a minor change is made to freeview.
@adam payne - Sagem not on affected list
The Sagem models have never appeared on the official lists of devices affected, but it's been pretty well known amongst the forums that the PVR72xx range could not cope with the split NIT.
I've refrained from retuning for the last year or so because of this, but the retune has forced my hand and the box is now pretty much useless.
Many of the boxes on the list, known to be affected were sold prior to the digital tick scheme. But these Sagems had the tick, and have never worked properly (mine had a note in the box from Sagem telling me about (some of) the bugs in the firmware that they were working on fixing.
In my opinion, the device has never actually been fit for purpose, and I will probably be chasing my retailer under the sale of goods act.
Is Freeview a synonym for DVB-T?
Is DVB-T a UK thing? A European thing? A worldwide thing?
Is The Register a UK thing? A European thing? A worldwide thing?
Do DVB-T viewers outside the UK have to put up with this semi-constant faffing about with retuning?
Do DVB-T viewers outside the UK have to put up with a tiny handful of channels' worth of worthwhile content, a couple of hours of which in a good week might actually not be repeats, the remaining time and channels to be filled with repeat dross and shopping dross and gambling dross and phone-in dross and any other opportunity to make cheapskate money?
Or is it just markets where Sky is dominant (look out Germany, he's heading your way) where the above applies?