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Absolute 80's going mono on DAB


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Old 14-04-2013, 14:41
Bollard
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Need to replace my car radio soon, I'm thinking I might not bother getting another DAB unit as there seems no point with the last stereo station I listen to switching to mono
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Old 14-04-2013, 16:48
jaffboy151
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Need to replace my car radio soon, I'm thinking I might not bother getting another DAB unit as there seems no point with the last stereo station I listen to switching to mono
Wish I had changed my car 6 months later as I changed my dab radio to a double din one which was quite a bit extra over the standard version, now all the stations bar XFM are now mono which I can't listen too as they sound too bad, XFM sounds like it about to vanish which leave me 5live to listen to, I now spend most the time listening to radio via the tune in app on the iPhone, though my journey is fairly rural 3 have improved reception along my route to work a lot in the last year so apart from when it has a buffer wobble its better the now Wolverhampton reception already and I have so much choice all in stereo, Q, kerrang, XFM Manchester, magic, tunn 90's & Tunn Dance, radio New York live, what ever I can find, plus 100's of good 80's stations,
As I said in another post mono sound will drive people away from traditional radio either to iPod music or WE7 type apps or Internet radio where there is much more competition then just your local rivals to worry about, either way commercial radio will suffer a Massive drop in a revenue, should fm & dab listening decline and other mediums increase as the listener base will be wafer thin, I think they are playing a dangerous game with radio future at the moment, could all just collapse and leave the medium being a thing of the past bar a few stations
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Old 14-04-2013, 17:02
suffolkblue
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I don't mind stations in mono as the dab radios I have are all one speaker lol. But I do agree its poor for the times but I would miss my dab if I got rid of them. But Another Rock station please no as if we don't have enough already with planet rock 6 music and the absolute brand. I won't be tuning into the new station but I guess each as to their own.
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Old 14-04-2013, 17:37
jaffboy151
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Rock music is also the format which sounds worst at low bit rates... Rock formats are good but all these stations seem to be chasing the dad twiddly rock side of things, more NME or Q style would be better or even something's like a dance station to rival the cheesy kiss sound..
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Old 14-04-2013, 17:51
suffolkblue
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Very true agree with that jaffboy 100%.
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Old 14-04-2013, 17:55
James2001
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Digital radio needs to move alway from low bitrate, mono MP2 streams before it has a chance of successful adoption. There's much better systems than DAB out there, problem is we got DAB embedded to the point we're stuck with it in this country.
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Old 14-04-2013, 18:38
hanssolo
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Rock formats are good but all these stations seem to be chasing the dad twiddly rock side of things, more NME or Q style would be better
MNE did not last long and Q managed to get 550k at launch on freeview, and then as other digital stations like Abs 80s increased listening, Q dispite being added to some local DAB muxes and Sky dropped to 162k in 2012, so again failed and just about survives on freeview.
http://www.mediauk.com/radio/616/q-r...tening-figures
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Old 14-04-2013, 18:42
Nick_G
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Digital radio needs to move alway from low bitrate, mono MP2 streams before it has a chance of successful adoption. There's much better systems than DAB out there, problem is we got DAB embedded to the point we're stuck with it in this country.
True. The problem is there isn't enough money to do it in the commercial sector...
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Old 14-04-2013, 21:32
David (2)
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I like dab, but even i think this is a bad move.
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Old 15-04-2013, 17:59
s_eightuk
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DAB is the new Medium Wave.
There must be future for FM if they keep lowering the bit rate and therefore the quality on DAB
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Old 15-04-2013, 18:11
-ajm-
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I have trouble envisioning a switchover.
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Old 15-04-2013, 19:36
ex pirat
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Welcome to the mono world of DAB . Wonder if the switchover will be scrapped ?.
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Old 15-04-2013, 21:15
Hybrid tellies
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64k mono? They can stick it, I can't bear 112K!. I'd rather listen on AM thanks.
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Old 15-04-2013, 21:20
hanssolo
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I have trouble envisioning a switchover.
What's Ab's 80 to do with a switchover when it's digital only.

All the national analogue music stations R1,R2,R3, Absolute and Classic are stereo on DAB.
Absolute have been trying to close AM for a while, it has extended the licence, but are now getting close which will help it's profitablity.
http://www.mediaweek.co.uk/news/1052098/
it pays communications infrastructure company Arqiva for national AM transmission, currently in the millions of pounds.
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Old 15-04-2013, 22:02
Nick_G
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Well it's not exactly going to help to attract listeners, and hence advertising revenue, if the commercial digital stations mostly sound awful. I would think a strong AM signal would sound better than 64k MP2 in mono. MP3 sounds bad enough at 64k, let alone MP2!

What's even more laughable is that DAB is supposed to become the flagship radio platform.
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Old 15-04-2013, 22:20
jaffboy151
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With things as they stand at the moment and knowing in most areas they will get much worse later in the year, no switch over can even be considered at this point, in fact as they stand dab doesn't have any future past the next Couple of years, if there's not a lot of extra Choice over FM & medium wave (yes MW should now be considered in the future of radio as in many cases the sound is the same or better then dab and the signal at least in the day travels further) and radio groups are pushing people to go online for more choice and better sound of there stations, at this point what's the real need for DAB? Most stations are available on FM & MW and the rest online..
You can't really argue that if dab can't replace FM then it should coexist with it without the FM simulcasts and just offer extra content, as transmission costs are too high vs the amount of listeners much of the specialist content stations would have.. Which takes you back to the original fundamental problem with the DAB model that's been there since its conception, not enough overall radio listeners to meet the financial costs of running a station of limited or even widespread appeal and also to provide an exceptable replacement to FM in terms of sound.
Put simply: the DAB transmission cost pie per multiplex cannot be split up enough transmitting in stereo (already well below FM) between stations to make them financially viable,
For dab to have a future, the model needs to change to enable an exceptable level of sound of stereo sound for the listener at a cost that the station owners can operate at successfully, in others words DAB+
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Old 15-04-2013, 22:26
-ajm-
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What's Ab's 80 to do with a switchover when it's digital
You're right, I was just making a point in general.
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Old 15-04-2013, 22:46
hanssolo
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Well it's not exactly going to help to attract listeners, and hence advertising revenue, if the commercial digital stations mostly sound awful.
One trouble with sound it's subjective.
On most DAB sets, stations do not actually sound "awful", listening now to Jazz FM at 64k and it's quite listenable at reasonable volume.

In next rajar Abs 80s in mono will still probably still have around 888,000 listeners mostly on DAB. If the 80
's content is what people want, it may even increase?
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Old 15-04-2013, 23:10
jaffboy151
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One trouble with sound it's subjective.
On most DAB sets, stations do not actually sound "awful", listening now to Jazz FM at 64k and it's quite listenable at reasonable volume.

In next rajar Abs 80s in mono will still probably still have around 888,000 listeners mostly on DAB. If the 80
's content is what people want, it may even increase?
Mate, your argument might stand up when comparing 192k with 160k vs 128k but quite frankly you'd need to have a burst ear drum or work with extremely loud background noise not to hear how bad 64k mp2 sounds, reasonable volume level should about 0.....
Yeah ab80's might be lucky enough to keep figures the same, but where's the future growth going to come from?
Rough 64k mono is not a viable long term business model for music radio in the 21st century
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Old 15-04-2013, 23:25
Nick_G
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It's a sign to me that the money in the commercial sector is running out when the number of commercial stations cutting bit rates is on the up, in an effort to save cash. Clearly this is not sustainable.

We'll have to see what happens with Digital 2 as that would at least be a start.
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Old 15-04-2013, 23:42
MSB
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How much of Absolute Radio's listenership is still by AM?
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Old 16-04-2013, 01:28
DiandalScotland
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I have to agree. iv had dab from the start over 10yrs and seen or should that be heard lol many a gd station come and go. instead of improvement over the last 10yrs its went downhill. Dab radio- Less choice- Less sound quality. Ofcom, you have to readvertise digital 2 and hopefully someone will take that on, tho they would probabley fill that with rock and pop/dance stations to the max. I have the pure highway in the car and have noticed sound quality on the dab not very gd but I tend these days to listen to tunein app on my smartphone as I get unlimited internet for 12 with giffgaff.
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Old 16-04-2013, 07:21
hanssolo
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Mate, your argument might stand up when comparing 192k with 160k vs 128k but quite frankly you'd need to have a burst ear drum or work with extremely loud background noise not to hear how bad 64k mp2 sounds, reasonable volume level should about 0.....
Yeah ab80's might be lucky enough to keep figures the same, but where's the future growth going to come from?
Rough 64k mono is not a viable long term business model for music radio in the 21st century
Maybe listening on a HiFi it may be possible, to but to an average person listening on say a Pure One or an fitted car set now the latest encoders are used, the 64k audio quality will actually be acceptable.
But agree the future will be multiplatform with DAB listening increasing it's current 66% share of digital listening by about 8% each year, however internet listening is increasing it's 15% of digital listening by about 43%.
http://www.rajar.co.uk/docs/news/Raj...2012_final.pdf
But agree Abs 80s and Planetrock should have kept stereo rather than let Teamrock launch, but from what Southcity says the cost saving of 300k each year will help Abs 80s and Planetrock be profitable.

How much of Absolute Radio's listenership is still by AM?
Last year (q1) the main Absolute station, which will still be stereo on DAB, had 71% digital listening, the 29% analogue figure is shared between national AM and London FM. So this year the digital figure will be increased, and with going stereo DAB in NI, Absolute could close the expensive to run AM 1215 mono transmitters in 2014
http://radiotoday.co.uk/2012/02/abso...#disqus_thread
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Old 16-04-2013, 07:26
jaffboy151
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Maybe listening on a HiFi it may be possible, to but to an average person listening on say a Pure One or an fitted car set now the latest encoders are used, the 64k audio quality will actually be acceptable.
What twaddle..
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Old 16-04-2013, 07:35
hanssolo
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Notice the KT DB1000 you use was one of the early car sets when bit rates were 128k or more on the commercial music stations, might be the newer sets cope with the lower bit 112k and 64k commercial stations better?, but can't verify it?
May have cloth ears, but 64k music is listenable to me.
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