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Receiving analogue/DTT television in N.Ireland from scottish transmitters


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Old 29-08-2005, 19:49
irishdee
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I will soon be moving into the Newtownabbey/Glengormley area on the ouskirts of Belfast and have a query on the above mentioned topic. Firstly is this achievable? If so what equipment would I need eg type of aerial, booster etc. The reason for asking this is because the tv pictures in this area are provided by Carnmoney Hill transmitter which doesn't broadcast DTT or channel 5.

Many thanks in advance,

Dee

P.S I want a reduction in my tv license for moving into a non freeview area
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Old 29-08-2005, 20:44
Adam792
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You'll need a big aeriel but even then you may not succeed on digital.

Have a go, you might get lucky
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Old 30-08-2005, 15:16
SteveMcK
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Originally Posted by irishdee
I will soon be moving into the Newtownabbey/Glengormley area on the ouskirts of Belfast and have a query on the above mentioned topic. Firstly is this achievable? If so what equipment would I need eg type of aerial, booster etc. The reason for asking this is because the tv pictures in this area are provided by Carnmoney Hill transmitter which doesn't broadcast DTT or channel 5.

Many thanks in advance,

Dee

P.S I want a reduction in my tv license for moving into a non freeview area
About the only chance you might have is analogue from the medium-sized (16/20kW) relay on Cambret Hill (Mull of Galloway, near Wigtown IIRC), which carries BBC Scotland and Border TV. It is low-ish power, but for a long time it was the only way to get any TV in areas like Conlig (between Bangor and Newtownards) until they built some extra relays. You should have a fairly clear path from Carnmoney to Cambret Hill. It puts a reasonable signal into Bangor & N.Down, which is actually a big problem because in their wisdom the planners put Ch5 from Cambret Hill on channel 37H, exactly the same as the 1kW Ch5 transmitter on Black Mountain that serves Belfast. That means that everyone on high ground in Bangor and down the coast gets interference on Ch5 Won't be a problem for you if you're screened by Carnmoney Hill!

It is a Group B transmitter, so you'll need a good high-gain Group B aerial, horizontally polarized (unusual for a relay) and a masthead amp. Don't be surprised to get tidal effects ar some times of the year or the day.

No DTT from Cambret Hill, though, and I've never been able to get other reception from Scotland in the N. Down area except under freak weather conditions, the same probably applies to Carnmoney. The Limavady transmitter might just be possible, but it is only 800W, and the Sperrins might be in the way. Worth a try, I suppose!
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Old 31-08-2005, 02:10
Redcoat
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Originally Posted by irishdee
I will soon be moving into the Newtownabbey/Glengormley area on the ouskirts of Belfast and have a query on the above mentioned topic. Firstly is this achievable? If so what equipment would I need eg type of aerial, booster etc. The reason for asking this is because the tv pictures in this area are provided by Carnmoney Hill transmitter which doesn't broadcast DTT or channel 5.

Many thanks in advance,

Dee

P.S I want a reduction in my tv license for moving into a non freeview area
I used to live in the area for a short while(as a student) around 4 years ago and this was my experience of it...

1. Apart from an area directly below Carnmoney Hill, Divis comes in strongly but suffers from horrendous ghosting in analogue on Channels 1-4. Funnily enough though the problem was never as bad on Channel 5 and it was perfectly OK to watch with a set-top aerial! Even with this, the ghosting problems from Divis should not present a problem with DTT from the same site. Just for added benefit, RTÉ from Clermont Carn was available - most homes in the area had an aerial for it with a masthead amp, pictures were good in general although TG4 suffered a bit. It was always good to set it up for students wanting to watch Champions League games on TV3 with their mates and a few six packs! I had a top-floor bedsit with a south-pointing window and with just an indoor aerial on the windowsill, the pictures were perfectly watchable to the point of only small errors on teletext.

2. I never got a reliable signal from Cambret Hill though it, along with Caldbeck & Sandale did come in during high pressure from across the sea. And yeah, Channel 5 reception did get shot during these periods! Some local houses did seem to have aerials pointed across the water, but not many.

3. If Cambret Hill is receivable bear in mind that the transmissions from Carnmoney Hill are in the same aerial group.
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Old 31-08-2005, 13:35
SteveMcK
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Originally Posted by Redcoat
1. Apart from an area directly below Carnmoney Hill, Divis comes in strongly but suffers from horrendous ghosting in analogue on Channels 1-4. Funnily enough though the problem was never as bad on Channel 5 and it was perfectly OK to watch with a set-top aerial! .
Ch 1-4 are from the 500kW transmitter on Divis, when you're that close to that size of Tx the signal bounces off everything!. Ch5 is from a much lower-power one on Black Mountain, slightly south of Divis.

When I lived in Glengormley many years ago (pre-UHF) the Band III UTV transmitter was on Black Mountain, with similar ghosting problems. The solution in some areas was to use stacked double aerials (and you can imagine what a stacked pair of 11-element Band III aerials was like!) aimed upwards at 50 degrees or so at the hill that towered above the houses. This produced such a huge direct signal that it drowned out the ghosts. Houses then had a chain of attenuators (3 or 4 of them) plugged into the aerial lead, to reduce the direct signal to something the TV could cope with, and to reduce the ghosts to acceptable levels.

Until fairly recently you could still see the remains of some of those aerials on the houses as you went up the M2.
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