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Full Freeview on the Winter Hill (Bolton, England) transmitter

first published this on - UK Free TV
sa_streetviewGoogle Streetviewsa_gmapsGoogle mapsa_bingBing mapsa_gearthGoogle Earthsa_gps53.625,-2.516 or 53°37'30"N 2°30'56"Wsa_postcodeBL6 6SL

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The symbol shows the location of the Winter Hill (Bolton, England) transmitter which serves 2,690,000 homes. The bright green areas shown where the signal from this transmitter is strong, dark green areas are poorer signals. Those parts shown in yellow may have interference on the same frequency from other masts.

Are there any planned engineering works or unexpected transmitter faults on the Winter Hill (Bolton, England) mast?

WINTER HILL transmitter - MainPossible weak signal Digital tick

List by multiplex|List by channel number|List by channel name|See terrain plot

Which Freeview channels does the Winter Hill transmitter broadcast?

If you have any kind of Freeview fault, follow this Freeview reset procedure first.

Digital television services are broadcast on a multiplexes (or Mux) where many stations occupy a single broadcast frequency, as shown below.

 H max
C50 (706.0MHz)726mDTG-3100,000W
Channel icons
1 BBC One North West, 2 BBC Two England, 7 BBC Three, 9 BBC Four, 120 CBBC, 121 CBeebies, 130 BBC News, 131 BBC Parliament, 601 BBC Red Button 1, plus 13 others

 H max
C59 (778.0MHz)726mDTG-3100,000W
Channel icons
3 ITV (Granada), 4 Channel 4 North ads, 5 Channel 5 The North ads, 6 ITV 2, 13 Channel 4 +1 North ads, 14 More 4, 15 Film 4, 28 E4, 33 ITV +1 (Granada),

 H max
C54- (737.8MHz)726mDTG-6100,000W
Channel icons
45 Film 4 +1, 101 BBC One HD (England no regional news), 102 BBC Two HD (England), 103 ITV HD (ITV Granada), 104 Channel 4 HD North ads, 105 BBC Three HD, 123 CBBC HD, plus 1 others

 H max
C58 (770.0MHz)726mDTG-8100,000W
Channel icons
10 ITV 3, 20 Drama, 26 ITV Be, 27 ITV 2 +1, 30 5*, 31 5USA, 34 ITV 3 +1, 37 Quest, 44 Channel 5 +1, 55 Channel 5 +24, 61 True Entertainment, 62 ITV 4 +1, 66 CBS Reality, 72 ITV Be +1, 122 CITV, plus 20 others

 H max
C49 (698.0MHz)726mDTG-8100,000W
Channel icons
 BBC Red Button 2, 11 pick, 12 Dave, 17 Really, 29 E4 +1, 32 Movie Mix, 41 Food Network, 42 Travel Channel, 46 Challenge, 48 Movies4Men, 68 truTV, 69 truTV +1, 126 Tiny Pop, 132 Sky News, 242 Vintage TV, plus 18 others

 H max
C55 (746.0MHz)726mDTG-8100,000W
Channel icons
18 4Music, 19 Yesterday, 21 VIVA, 24 ITV 4, 25 Dave ja vu, 38 Quest +1, 47 4seven, 58 BT Sport 1 (not free), 59 BT Sport 2 (not free), 64 CBS Action, 70 Horror Channel, 133 Al Jazeera English, 135 RT English , plus 18 others

 H -20dB
C56 (754.0MHz)572mDTG-121,000W
Channel icons
from 1st October 2014: 8 YourTV Manchester, 125 Pop, plus 1 others

 H -17dB
C56 (754.0MHz)572mDTG-122,000W
Channel icons
from 30th June 2014: 8 Bay TV Liverpool, 125 Pop, plus 1 others

 H -20dB
C56 (754.0MHz)572mDTG-121,000W
Channel icons
from 1st October 2014: 8 YourTV Blackpool and Preston, 125 Pop, plus 1 others

 H -5.9dB
C31 (554.0MHz)726mDTG-625,700W
Channel icons
63 Community Channel, 71 Motors TV, 106 BBC Four HD, 107 BBC News HD, 108 Al Jazeera HD, 109 Community Channel HD, 110 Channel 4+1 HD, 111 4seven HD, 124 CBeebies HD, 134 Al Jazeera Arabic, plus 3 others

 H -8.5dB
C37 (602.0MHz)726mDTG-614,000W
Channel icons
starts sometime during 2014/5:

 H -20dB
C57 (762.0MHz)572mDTG-21,000W
Channel icons
50 Movies4Men +1, 54 Heart TV, 56 Capital TV, 60 Fire Hit TV,

DTG-3 64QAM 8K 2/324.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
DTG-6 256QAM 32KE 2/340.2Mb/s DVB-T2 MPEG4
DTG-8 64QAM 8K 3/427.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
DTG-12 QSPK 8K 3/48.0Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
DTG-2 16QAM 2K 3/418.1Mb/s DVB-T MPEG2
H/V: aerial position (horizontal or vertical)

Which BBC and ITV regional news can I watch from the Winter Hill transmitter?

regional news image
BBC North West Tonight 3.1m homes 11.8%
from Salford M50 2QH, 22km southeast
to BBC North West region - 92 masts.
regional news image
ITV Granada Reports 3.1m homes 11.6%
from Salford M50 2EQ, 22km southeast
to ITV Granada region - 80 masts.

How will the Winter Hill (Bolton, England) transmission frequencies change over time?

aerial groupVHFC/D EC/D EC/D EC/D EC/D EWK
700C49 ArqAArqA

orange background for multiplexes names more
green background for transmission frequencies
lilac background for power levels in watts
800MHz band: 4G mobile started in 2013
700MHz band: possible 4G in 2019 more
600MHz band: new or moved digital TV services more
Notes: + and - denote 166kHz offset; aerial group are shown as A B C/D E K W
Italics for analogue, digital switchover was Wednesdays 4th November and 2nd December 2009.
Click/touch here to read How do the old analogue and currrent digital signal levels compare?Analogue 1-4 500kWSDN, ARQA,
Click/touch here to read Other mapsWinter Hill Freeview, Winter Hill DAB, Winter Hill AM/FM, Winter Hill TV region, BBC North
Click/touch here to read Which companies have run the Channel 3 services in the Winter Hill transmitter areaMay 1956-Jul 1
Click/touch here to read Is the transmitter output the same in all directions? Internet Explorer 9+, Firefox, Opera, Chrom

Wednesday, 29 April 2015
1:52 AM

Does anyone know why the Arqiva T2 multiplexes have a different bitrate to that of BBC B?

com 7: 40,200,039 bps
com 8: 40,200,034 bps
BBC B: 40,214,669 bps

(bps = bits per second)

The bitrates were measured from recorded samples of the full transport stream by "DVB-T2 Data-Rate Calculator", which is a free tool found here:

link to this
js's 56 posts Bronze Bronze xx
6:46 AM

To give an idea of the accuracy of the measured bitrates, here are the results for all the Winter Hill multiplexes.

40214625 bps BBC B

40200015 bps com 7
40200018 bps com 8

27144380 bps Arqiva A
27144382 bps Arqiva B
27144372 bps SDN

24128332 bps BBC A
24128338 bps D3&4

18096298 bps LocalMux1

9048132 bps LocalMux2

The results from "DVB-T2 Data-Rate Calculator" are identical to those from my own program, which works like this:

TS packets are read until a packet containing a PCR is found. The PID is noted and PCRs are read from packets with this PID, noting the corresponding packet count, until end of file.

Results from a ten second (long enough to capture all the service tables) sample of com 7 were

pcr pid = 401
first_pcr = 2138813251731
first_packet = 2
last_pcr = 2139084457513
last_packet = 268483

Using this data we get:

bitrate = 27000000*(last_packet-first_packet)*188*8/(last_pcr-first_pcr) = 40200015 bps

A Transport Stream (TS) is a sequence of packets.
A TS packet is 188 bytes long or 188*8 bits.
PID = packet identifier = A unique integer value used to identify elementary streams in a Transport Stream.
PCR = Program Clock Reference = A time stamp in the Transport Stream from which decoder timing is derived.
PCR is a count of cycles of the 27 MHz system clock.

link to this
js's 56 posts Bronze Bronze xx
Transmitter engineering
4:31 PM

WINTER HILL transmitter - DAB: BBC National DAB Radio Off Air from 01:25 today to 02:50 today. [BBC] MainPossible weak signal [DUK]

link to this
Transmitter engineering's 89,052 posts Owner Owner xx
Thursday, 30 April 2015
Transmitter engineering
4:31 AM

WINTER HILL transmitter - DAB: BBC National DAB Radio Off Air from 01:25 yesterday to 02:50 yesterday. [BBC] MainPossible weak signal [DUK]

link to this
Transmitter engineering's 89,052 posts Owner Owner xx
Friday, 1 May 2015
Transmitter engineering
4:31 AM

WINTER HILL transmitter - DAB: BBC National DAB Radio Off Air from 01:25 on 29 Apr to 02:50 on 29 Apr. [BBC] MainPossible weak signal [DUK]

link to this
Transmitter engineering's 89,052 posts Owner Owner xx
Sunday, 3 May 2015
12:54 AM

For DVB-T, the NIT contains Terrestrial Delivery System descriptors which give the transmission parameters for each multiplex.
For example:

centre_frequency = 706000
bandwidth = 8 MHz
constellation = 64-QAM
transmission_mode = 8k
code_rate = 2/3
guard_interval = 1/32

from which the theoretical bitrate is found to be 24128342 bps.

On UK DTT, in the case of a T2 multiplex, the so called "T2 Delivery System" descriptor is just three bytes.
For example:

plp_id = 00
T2_system_id = 402A

No transmission parameters are given so the theoretical bitrate is unknown. Not even the transmission frequency. Utterly Useless.

The measured bitrates are generally close to the theoretical bitrates:

Multiplex: Measured Bitrate, Theoretical Bitrate

COM 7: 40200022, unknown
COM 8: 40200018, unknown
Arqiva A: 27144380, 27144385
BBC A: 24128332, 24128342
BBC B: 40214633, unknown
Arqiva B: 27144381, 27144385
LocalMux2: 9048132, 9048128
LocalMux: 18096364, 18096257
SDN: 27144349, 27144385
D3&4: 24128338, 24128342

In ETSI TS 102 831 V1.2.1
Implementation guidelines for a second generation digital terrestrial television broadcasting system (DVB-T2)
Table 17: Maximum bit-rate and recommended configurations for 8 MHz, 32 K 1/128, PP7

Modulation = 256-QAM
Code rate = 2/3
Frame length = 60
FEC blocks per frame = 202

gives a Theoretical Bitrate of 40214645 bps, which is very close to the Measured BBC B bitrate of 40214633 bps.

Does anyone know of a T2 parameter set which matches the COM 7 and COM 8 Measured Bitrates?

link to this
js's 56 posts Bronze Bronze xx
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