DAB in Barlick

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Big Kev
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DAB in Barlick

Post by Big Kev » 19 Mar 2012, 11:08

We had a "Digital Switchover" topic on ,the old site, in which I mentioned installing an external aerial for DAB. For those interested I installed it today, I now have all the BBC DAB Channels, along with many others I've yet to listen to. As an example I am getting BBC Radio 2 with a bitrate of 128kbps and a 96% signal strength.

The DAB aerial was less than a tenner (ebay) and it is bolted to the same bracket as the satellite dish. I am of the presumption that I am getting the signal from Emley Moor and am in a DAB "hotspot".
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Tardis » 19 Mar 2012, 14:17

That sounds good, although I'm quite happy with FM at the moment.

If I had known that 12 months ago I wouldn't have got what I have now

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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by PanBiker » 19 Mar 2012, 16:45

What type of antenna did you end up with Kev? Did you go for a small directional or just an omnidirectional?

Having said that, just realised that you said presume from Emley Moor, in which case it must be an omni or you would know which way you pointed it :smile:
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Sunray10 » 19 Mar 2012, 18:21

96 percent signal strength is fantastic, Kev. I'm lucky if I get 85 percent signal strength where I'm living. Well done that man ! :cool4:

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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Tizer » 19 Mar 2012, 20:08

It's odd where these OG posts lead...seeing omnidirectional (all directions) I began to wonder where the word omnibus came from and found it means `for all'. I presume that's because it was a carriage for ordinary folk and not just the toffs. I didn't know that. Learn something every day. I'll go back under my stone now...

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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Big Kev » 19 Mar 2012, 22:15

PanBiker wrote:What type of antenna did you end up with Kev? Did you go for a small directional or just an omnidirectional?

Having said that, just realised that you said presume from Emley Moor, in which case it must be an omni or you would know which way you pointed it :smile:
'tis indeed an omni, Ian. http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/150758153291? ... _500wt_922

I presumed Emley Moor as I couldn't find another transmitter that didn't have a big hill in the way. I could be wrong, it has been known :grin:
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Sunray10 » 20 Mar 2012, 22:17

The question is, is DAB any good. I've heard many people say its not that brilliant - fm is just as good. But I'm not sure whether its worth purchasing a DAB radio, yet.

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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Whyperion » 21 Mar 2012, 01:55

DAB is probably good enough , and you can get a few more stations over and above FM/AM which might be useful , of course internet radio gets you
broadcasts from around the world and specialist stations too.

Re Omnibus , I am not certain that the cod-greek on this word is actually correct , the real derivation of the word is believed to be a little more convoluted.

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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Big Kev » 21 Mar 2012, 07:32

Sunray10 wrote:The question is, is DAB any good. I've heard many people say its not that brilliant - fm is just as good. But I'm not sure whether its worth purchasing a DAB radio, yet.
I am very pleased with the quality. A like for like comparison (Radio 2 FM against Radio 2 DAB) gives me a "crisper" sound on DAB. The bass response, through the sub, seems much stronger too.
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Nolic » 21 Mar 2012, 07:50

DAB every time for me. As Kev says better reception, better quality sound and for the difference in price for a DAB radio better all round value for money. I listen to radio far more now than I did before DAB. Nolic
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Tizer » 21 Mar 2012, 12:27

Swings & roundabouts, horses for courses. We only use radio for listening to Radio 4 and Radio 3 and we have about 5 cheap FM radios around the house for this and they do the job perfectly. We bought a relatively expensive DAB radio (Pure Digital brand) solely for the facility to record programmes as MP3 files on an SD card for listening to later. The recording side is fine but the radio reception for listening is not always perfect. A lot of the settings involve menus and they are poorly organised so you have to do lots of clicking like on a mobile phone menu. It also takes time to start up whereas push the button the FN radio and bingo, instant sound (we could avoid some of the slow startup if we left the DAB radio on standby but I object to having so many gadgets wasting electric on standby.

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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Big Kev » 21 Mar 2012, 17:00

I thought the set up I have was quite reasonably priced. I traded in my old Yamaha pro logic amp and speaker system, against the yamaha crx550 I know it sounds like a motorcycle), and parted with £120. I already had a pair of Goodmans Maxim 3 bookshelf speakers and an Eltax Planos active sub, from an old surround sound system. I think it sounds pretty good for a very small outlay.
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Stanley » 22 Mar 2012, 05:28

Like Tiz I have a house full of radios, including a very expensive Sony portable that I bought when I was globe-trotting, picks up virtually everything. Have a look at this LINK
Question is will it be useless if UK analogue signal is switched off? Should I sell it now?
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Big Kev » 22 Mar 2012, 07:37

Stanley wrote:Like Tiz I have a house full of radios, including a very expensive Sony portable that I bought when I was globe-trotting, picks up virtually everything. Have a look at this LINK
Question is will it be useless if UK analogue signal is switched off? Should I sell it now?
It will be useless once the FM transmissions are turned off. I wouldn't hold your breath though, the gossip is that there's at least another 8 years...
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Tizer » 22 Mar 2012, 10:42

Remember how cheques were going to be `turned off'? They had to bring them back pretty quick! It'll be the `Great DAB U-turn'!

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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Pluggy » 22 Mar 2012, 14:02

There isn't the pressure to turn off analogue radio, because it doesn't reside in an attractive and hence valuable part of the spectrum unlike analogue TV. The FM band is little over 20Mhz wide, which makes it pretty much useless except for narrow bandwidth audio transmissions. Besides that there is much debate about the early DAB that we adopted being a solution looking for a problem. Its not very good in cars (radio's biggest audience) because it needs a good solid signal not to sound like babbling mud, ol' FM keeps on going long after DAB has given up. 87.5 to 108 Mhz is practically a word wide band for FM Audio. I doubt it will ever be turned of entirely. Some commercial stations have been on DAB and abandoned it again when it was found most of their listeners were still on FM and it didn't justify the cost of keeping it. The fact that you need a big aerial to get it in Barlick after all this time is a good indicator of its universal appeal (not).
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by PanBiker » 22 Mar 2012, 14:36

I would tent to agree there Pluggy,. There is not a lot really wrong with the FM broadcast band anyway. The radio in my car which is no where near state of the art as it's X reg, has RDS and will auto-tune the best signal for the station selected. With the TA (Traffic Alert) turned on it will deliver information into the car which is relevant to where you are located. Not a lot wrong with that really, a proven and solid system. No need to fix if it ain't broke.

The Amateur Bands have allocations in this general bit of the spectrum at 50MHz (6mtrs) and 144MHz (2Mtrs). The old 4mtr band which was originally for commercial PMR Radio sat in between. When they moved that service up to it's present position above 200MHz, the surplus 4mtr equipment that came onto the market was used by amateurs to convert for 2M mobile use. A cheap way of getting onto the band with a bit of under the lid work to get it onto Amateur Band. Pye used to manufacture a lot of the mobile PMR stuff and conversion articles and kits were readily available in Amateur Radio magazines and round the clubs.
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Whyperion » 23 Mar 2012, 00:36

On FM with TA i get details of road and traffic delays miles from where I actually aim ( Radio London in Reading for example ).
If anyone needs a great big ariel I have put one on freecycle this afternoon.

(This is now reserved for one person whom responded last night)

Stanley most older radios have space to put DAB decoders into them , for a price there are two or three knowledgeable people that can do this for you. Quickest way is a DAB module and separate tuner indicator wired into the GRAM/EXT in circuit.
Last edited by Whyperion on 23 Mar 2012, 14:13, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Stanley » 23 Mar 2012, 04:45

Thanks for the clarification. I suppose the radio will have value for many years if only as a collectable!
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by PanBiker » 23 Mar 2012, 09:52

RDS is not perfect but it does give you relevant information. It delivers traffic alerts from transmitters that are in range so it may be quite wide ranging in the information. Certainly better than having no information at all. You can always cancel any irrelevant alerts anyway by a single press on the service button, at which point it will revert to monitoring for next TA ID signal.
Whyperion wrote: Stanley most older radios have space to put DAB decoders into them , for a price there are two or three knowledgeable people that can do this for you. Quickest way is a DAB module and separate tuner indicator wired into the GRAM/EXT in circuit.
I think it would be quit a challenge to insert anything extra into the internals of Stanley's ICF2001D, quite a compact design from memory. The two or three experts with the "knowledge" must be making a fortune.
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Pluggy » 23 Mar 2012, 10:32

Whyperion wrote: If anyone needs a great big ariel I have put one on freecycle this afternoon.
Assuming its the loft TV antennae in the BB18 area (since aerial is misspelt the same way ;) ) its no good for DAB. I doubt any DAB aerial would do me any good for Emley Moor, being tucked under Weets the way I am. Its generally easier to get radio on the Internet.
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Big Kev » 23 Mar 2012, 11:13

Pluggy wrote:
Whyperion wrote: If anyone needs a great big ariel I have put one on freecycle this afternoon.
Assuming its the loft TV antennae in the BB18 area (since aerial is misspelt the same way ;) ) its no good for DAB. I doubt any DAB aerial would do me any good for Emley Moor, being tucked under Weets the way I am. Its generally easier to get radio on the Internet.
You never know, Emley Moor is south east of Barlick.
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by PanBiker » 23 Mar 2012, 13:22

I checked out my location on the croft as I thought the huge chunk of copper on Holy Trinity roof might well have a bearing on any signal from Emley.

Not the case, from my house I have a line of sight (signal wise), which is effectively as near as makes no difference straight down Kelbrook Road and over the back of Kelbrook Moor. Google Earth makes it relatively easy to check for local obstacles.
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by Big Kev » 23 Mar 2012, 19:24

PanBiker wrote:I checked out my location on the croft as I thought the huge chunk of copper on Holy Trinity roof might well have a bearing on any signal from Emley.

Not the case, from my house I have a line of sight (signal wise), which is effectively as near as makes no difference straight down Kelbrook Road and over the back of Kelbrook Moor. Google Earth makes it relatively easy to check for local obstacles.
Have you tried a short bit of metal on the end of a length of sat cable, Ian? On an upstairs window cill? I have a length of cable, with F plugs on either end, if you want to play.
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Re: DAB in Barlick

Post by PanBiker » 23 Mar 2012, 21:04

No, not tried it Kev and thanks for the offer. I have all the stuff myself but to be quite honest it's not high on my priorities. I may get round to it at some point if and when I re-instate some Amateur Radio antennas. Been revisiting some designs for 11 - 17 element Yagi's which look very interesting as a home build rather than the £200 commercial versions. I used to like building my own. Myself and a mate built 4 x 14 element to use stacked and bayed for portable contesting work on the VHF bands.

Since doing the exercise for the Emley signal from here I can see that I have quite a good take off, Holy Trinity would not impact my interest in the North East for aurora, or indeed the South East for tropospheric propagation.

I suppose I should really take this over into the Ham Radio thread (which I think I will de-Americanise shortly), it's a bit off topic here.
Ian

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