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DAB workshop reception

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mick H09/01/2016 11:23:08
763 forum posts
28 photos

Where I live, Boston, Lincolnshire, I find that in general TV and radio reception is not good which to my simple mind I consider strange given the flatness of the countryside. More particularly, I gave up on an FM radio I had in my workshop and bought a DAB outfit ( good make) after being persuaded of the virtues of DAB. Again generally not particularly good reception. I like to listen to LBC but this is about the worst channel for reception. The aerial for the radio is a piece of wire about 24 inches long and by continually tweaking it I can get a spasmodic reception. The simple answer is "don't listen to LBC" I suppose but I have wondered whether the workshop environment may be affecting the signal? Reception even varies depending on where I's OK at the lathe but hopeless near the mill! Any ideas?


jason udall09/01/2016 11:33:31
2030 forum posts
41 photos

Also you mention marginal reception on tv..
Dab I believe is the same broadcast as the you are probably on a hiding to nothing
Your tv will probably have a high gain aerial ..unless you dab radio has provision for external aerial you are stuck

Dab does not seem to have as wide a take up that the bbc had hoped ( once past a certain limit they get to "sell off" the spectrum)..
Where I live we have what is called.."Freeview-lite"...
Basically less channels. .less dab...lower power...
But just enough to meet the requirement of " coverage" to meet the government targets
Ady109/01/2016 11:38:19
4828 forum posts
724 photos

There have been some interesting threads in here about modern transmission stuff

One mentioned that they lower the power outputs at 5pm on a Friday for the weekend so there is less chance of hardware failures and being called back to work before Monday 9am

I had noticed that digital reception was harder to get in Edinburgh and east lothian than the old analogue system, might be because of the new digital system but it, by coincidence, made indoor aerial reception by people not paying a licence fee almost impossible

A dedicated outdoor aerial may be your best solution, if you're a licence fee payer

Michael Gilligan09/01/2016 11:53:32
19324 forum posts
964 photos

This may be worth a try


Bazyle09/01/2016 12:16:18
6087 forum posts
221 photos

Height generally helps. You might try a 12ft pole outside with a dipole on it that you can rotate to point towards your nearest transmitter. You'll need a coax cable down to your radio and a coax input.

jason udall09/01/2016 12:23:18
2030 forum posts
41 photos
Posted by Bazyle on 09/01/2016 12:16:18:

Height generally helps. You might try a 12ft pole outside with a dipole on it that you can rotate to point towards your nearest transmitter. You'll need a coax cable down to your radio and a coax input.

Mmm dipole...rotate..Would be Intrested in how that works? Now a yagi ( tv aerial)..that would help

By the way any one know how a digital yagi is supposed to work?

jason udall09/01/2016 12:23:53
2030 forum posts
41 photos
"Forum error"

Edited By jason udall on 09/01/2016 12:24:52

Gordon Tarling09/01/2016 12:32:24
177 forum posts
4 photos

I'm near Grantham, Lincs and bought a DAB/FM/Internet radio/Ipod dock device for my workshop. Dab reception is awful, FM reception only slightly better, so I now mainly use Internet Radio - no problems with that!

KWIL09/01/2016 12:37:24
3447 forum posts
66 photos

You have to remember that the BBC is no longer in charge of the transmitters. All stations are run by Arquiva, so do not blame the beeb.

mick H09/01/2016 12:51:37
763 forum posts
28 photos

I don't mind having a go at some of the suggestions made but the aerial input is such a weedy little thing that I don't think it will stand much messing about with. It is only about 1/4" wide. I seem to have managed to load a photo without traumatising myself and this shows the nature of the beast. I have taken the thing apart as far as I dare and found that the two small aerial terminals are attached to the circuit board. How would you fit a co-ax to this? 002.jpg

pgk pgk09/01/2016 12:54:19
2367 forum posts
293 photos

In my bit of rural wales I cannot pick up any stations on the car or tractor radio near the house. Cell phone reception is one field and uphill away. TV/Radio in the house is possible with limited channels due to a boosted aerial in the attic. We don't bother and no longer have a tv licence. All such accesses are via internet and pc: live internet radio and iplayer. I have the shed wired with an overhead cable for internet since it's too far for wireless from the house.

Gary Wooding09/01/2016 13:07:15
909 forum posts
233 photos

Not totally off-topic, its still DAB, but not in the workshop.

I hear lots of adverts on the radio about the virtues of DAB in the car. My new car has DAB, as do the cars of a couple of friends. We're all agreed - its a terrible choice for a car - the signal just switches off and on as you drive. We've all switched it off in favour of analogue.

mick H09/01/2016 13:34:58
763 forum posts
28 photos

As far as I am concerned those extolling the virtues of DAB are quite simply blatant liars as are so many in positions of authority and responsibility over the rest of us. It is hardly surprising that the recent publication of "safe" alcohol levels have been met with such contempt.


Muzzer09/01/2016 14:09:50
2904 forum posts
448 photos

When DAB was launched, they had a choice of low quality (low bit rate I suppose) or a higher quality transmission. Naturally in their rush for profit and quick adoption they went for the low quality option which pretty much alienated the hifi buffs. As a result, any decent quality FM receiver gives better fidelity than DAB. I was quite p155ed off at the time even though I'm not one of those idiots who spends daft money on "hifi" (aka Emperor's New Clothes). I think they missed the trick there.

The main benefit of DAB to me is simply the very wide range of stations. And they are now fairly std fit in many cars.

You can get most of the same stations from the internet eg use your smart phone and a Bluetooth speaker. Same result, gets around the reception problem - and the cost of a DAB radio.

Edited By Muzzer on 09/01/2016 14:23:36

Muzzer09/01/2016 14:17:30
2904 forum posts
448 photos

The Chief Medical Officer is clearly not a master (mistress?) of logic. Explaining why men and women should observe the same limits:

In the BBC Breakfast interview Davies also explained why the guidance had the same alcohol limits for both women and men. “The short-term harms we have underestimated in the past. We now have very good data.

“I was horrified to learn that every year a thousand people die of intentional self harm while intoxicated, and over 800 of those are men … when you start to balance out the short-term harms and the long term harms, and the fact there is negligible protective effect of alcohol for men, then you get to: ‘We need to drink within the same guidelines.’”

Hmmm. I somehow doubt that the self harmers are following the current guidelines, so there is surely a logical error? Fiddling with these very modest limits isn't going to stop people (80% men presumably) getting seriously bladdered and then jumping off bridges. Quite a bizarre outlook.

Edited By Muzzer on 09/01/2016 14:18:35

Rik Shaw09/01/2016 15:13:22
1463 forum posts
396 photos

I get reasonable reception on the workshop Roberts DAB radio. To do so though I have had to solder a six feet length of lighting flex to the tip of the telescopic ariel. Without the wire the reception just keeps breaking up. I only listen to Classic FM and this works for me. One exception to this though, at exactly 4.00 pm every afternoon the signal breaks down and I just get mushy burbles, clicks and such. The final click is me turning the thing off !


Bazyle09/01/2016 15:17:30
6087 forum posts
221 photos

Mmm dipole...rotate..Would be Intrested in how that works? Now a yagi ( tv aerial)..that would help

By the way any one know how a digital yagi is supposed to work?

oops. DIgi and FM Radio is vertical polarised unlike Tv so rotating the dipole doesn't help. A dipole will be a little better than a whip and would cost about £15, while a 3 element yagi might be £25. Now the yagi would be directional. The Transmitter is probably Belmont at grid ref TF985423 on 225.648 MHz block 12B (may be relevant to antenna choice).
The antenna input is probably balanced but the black wire might be earthed so try not to earth any part of the coax/ antenna elsewhere. Also try both ways round to see if one is better. Then tentatively earth the outer and if it still is happy make it a good earth for lightning protection. If it is a LW radio too radio 4 will come in a lot better the wrong way round as the coax sheath acts as an antenna.

Jason - a digital yagi works by missing out elements according to the binary coding of the frequency secret

Mick Henshall09/01/2016 15:29:14
559 forum posts
34 photos

I have a cheap freeview box in workshop which I listen to R5L &R4 works fine except after about an hour it turns itself off but flashes up again if turned straight on


Mark P.09/01/2016 16:06:49
623 forum posts
8 photos
Mick H, DAB/FM is not bad at all over here in Louth.
Mark P.
MichaelR09/01/2016 16:11:53
448 forum posts
83 photos

Radio in the workshop "never" my workshop is my haven from the outside world where I can get on with my projects within my own little world, it's sad I know.


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