Changes To BBC HD Channels On Freesat

BBC will shortly be making changes to the satellite transponder that carries BBC One HD and BBC HD. The signal on this transponder is currently broadcast using a modulation scheme called “DVB-S”. On 6th June 2011 they will be upgrading to a newer “DVB-S2” scheme which is a more efficient way of operating the transponder and it creates more capacity from the same amount of spectrum.

The change will mean you may need to put your Freesat receiver or television into standby for 30 seconds (on or after the 6th June) and then restart to continue to receive the two BBC HD channels. If the channels are still unavailable then carry out a ‘freesat channel retune’ or a ‘first time installation’ (both available from the menu options). Full instructions can be found in the manual for your box or TV. Further help with retuning can be found at or by calling their customer support team on 08450 990 990.

Channel 4 used a similar principle in order to make more space available to introduce Channel 4 HD to Freesat, with talk of more of their HD channel family coming soon.

This may mean potentially improve bitrate quality across the BBC HD channels…but don’t hold your breath šŸ˜‰

More information here.

194 thoughts on “Changes To BBC HD Channels On Freesat”

  1. Oh and I knew about the change last week because Alix tweeted it. Though of course Iā€™d forgotten by Monday.

  2. Odd one this, my Humax HDR normally has to have channels that change or are added in added with a rescan however on this occasion it done it automatically with no input from me.

    My Pani TV which is the opposite from the Humax with any changes or new channels added in being automatic however this time I had to do a re-scan.

    I noted that the HDR had an up-date to the software this week so maybe with a bit of luck it will always update channels automatically from now on.

  3. Only trouble with auto update is u might not know u got new channels unless u go though the epg or look at this site

  4. Thats the one thing i miss with the Humax update, telling you when you have new channels or a change of some sort!

    And btw, thats not me posting about the 3D thing in asda.. Might need unique names on here LOL!

  5. @Ian

    “Thats the one thing i miss with the Humax update, telling you when you have new channels or a change of some sort!

    But that’s why we have joinfreesat!!

  6. @156 It’s easy – yours has a lower-case “i” šŸ˜‰

    Yeah, the problem is, I’ve noticed joinfreesat has missed a few of the minor changes – I can only assume admin has updated his Humax as well šŸ˜‰

    You should really buy another one and keep it non-updated (not sure how possible that is…) just so you can see changes. Either that or find a way to monitor it on a computer…

  7. I have a Pany Z81 (2008 model) C4 HD ok. BBC HD 108 and 109 no signal. Dont fancy doing a full reset what about the firmware updates I am assuming that these will be lost as well as this process returns it to a factory condition.

    I will try the normal rescan and hope for the best if it does not work. I will think again.

    Panasonic and freesat and BBC should really sort this out

  8. @159
    I had to do the whole factory reset on Panny Bluray DMR BS 750.
    Firmware remained at latest and recordings were unaffected

  9. @ John Emerson

    “I have a Pany Z81 (2008 model) C4 HD ok. BBC HD 108 and 109 no signal. Dont fancy doing a full reset what about the firmware updates I am assuming that these will be lost as well as this process returns it to a factory condition.”

    no they won’t, all previous firmware updates will remain intact. Factory condition only applies to the user preferences.

  10. Just watched Injustice on ITVHD then switched over to Grow Your Own BBC HD. The difference is huge. ITV is like a dslr photo whereas BBC is like a compact camera with over saturated colours.

  11. OK on my panasonic freesat 2008 it looks as if I need to do a shipping reset to get BBC HD 108 and 109 (or is that the case?) if I do this do I need my original PIN number the problem is that I forgot to write it down and 2008 was a long time ago.

    Do you leave all wires connected i,e, DVD etc any other info before I attemp will be appreciated. For the record I have a Pany Z81

  12. What are the BBC going to do with the new capacity? Rent it out to ITV for more HD regions, or Channel 5 HD?

  13. @ John Emerson,

    Simply go into menu then shipping condition, it will ask you to confirm as you will lose all data. Press ok, once it has returned your set to S.C it will retune all three tuners. you will have to re-enter your post code but not your pin. you should be able to receive 108 & 109 at this point. You can now delete any unwanted channels from the channel list as this is the data you will have lost.

  14. Is it me or has the picture actually got worse , watching the beeb hd last night & was thought I was watching sd , even got my daughter to put 109 in again to be sure… what a load of rubbish….

    We wont give in to this second rate quality. Film 4 on freesat in sd seems just about as good as bbchd and thats saying something…

    As Madness once sang ” Your’e an Embarrassment” !

    Its now putting me off watching this tosh, Hd should mean Hd not sd+ or Hd lite..

  15. I have lost all the BBC HD channels , also BBC3 and BBC1 London on my Fortec Star Innovation box. Have tried rescanning 4x now and it still wont pick them up. Removed the non working channels first as suggested but made no difference. What are the BBC doing ??? Anyone Know what to do ??

  16. @167: I had a bit of trouble with BBC HD (not the channels others though) with a Fortec Star Passion+. I think what solved it was I edited the transponder details, which on that box is an option on a separate menu from manual scan. I just re-entered everything and on going back to manual scan the strength and quality meters sprang into life.

    I think that’s what did it, anyway(!)

  17. Panasonic 2008 PZ81 shipping condition performed now OK 108 109, lost the DNS settings for hdmi inputs, restored automatically on second attempt to connect BBC iPlayer from Sony BluRay player.

    However as suggested above, tried just retuning the Panasonic BluRay recorder, with no success. Freesat did the ‘initialise’ yesterday, on their recorder and ended up with a black and white picture. So I shall contact my Panasonic retailler, to discuss a solution before I attempt the shipping condition/initialise route.

  18. I was wondering how you clever people find what bitrate the channel is utilising? I can’t find it any indication of it on my Humax HDR. I’m guessing it’s a function that isn’t available on the Humax platform, but is on others?
    It isn’t important, but I’ve just realised that I’ve got no hope of finishing this job on schedule and the abandonment of hope has liberated me in to drinking about a gallon of tea and a lot of web browsing šŸ™‚

  19. just fixed my panny 2008 to show bbchd and just realised i’ve lost the bloodt chanels on my sky box any suggestions

  20. Spent an hour last night factory resetting and then subsequently setting up my Panny BS750, took screen shots of all the system menu options to reprogramme back again.

    I’m glad this doesn’t have to be carried out everytime there’s a channel change, reminds me of the joys of cheap Freeview STB’s!!

  21. I’ve got one of the very early Grundig Gufsat01HD boxes, brought about the day after Freesat started. Box does not work with Ch4HD. According to the Harvard website my serial number won’t support S2 and I got a black screen when BBC channels changed last week.

    However, did a complete reinstall and rescan and the BBC channels are now working! Ch4HD still doesn’t work, but never watch Ch4 anyway.

  22. @ Mike 174

    Can you get NHK World HD? If so what is the signal strength. If it is low it may explain why you do not receive C4 HD.

  23. I get around 95% signal strength on NHK World HD on my Humax Foxsat HD box but no signal on Channel4 HD. I would have suspected dish alignment problems, but I had all that professionally re-done recently plus I have other TVs connected to that same dish ( via Quattro LNB and multiswitch) and they have 100% signal on channel4 HD.

    Still cant get the BBC HD channels on my Samsung TVs with built in FTA tuners, they don’t even show up on the satellites anymore so goodness only knows what else the BBC did the other day. I get them both perfectly on my Humax box.

    I’ve run out of ideas now šŸ™

  24. Hi Froggie

    If you are getting 95% signal on NHK World HD it would suggest your dish is perfectly aligned. Both Channel 4 HD and NHK World HD are on Eurobird 1 satellite. Can you get the BBC HD channels on your Humax box? Is your Samsung TV DVB S2 capable?

  25. Hi Kevin. Yes I get both BBD HD channels perfectly through my Humax box, just no channel4HD and yes the Samsung TVs are DVB-S2 capable, which is why I cant understand why I have lost BBC HD and BBC OneHD on the Samsungs since the switch the other day. When I re-scan, it doesn’t even find them now. I even reset one of the TVs back to factory setting, but still nothing. I can get Channel4HD, NHL WorldHD and ITV1HD on the Samsung TVs perfectly, its just the BBC HD channels that have vanished. I know, its weird.

    The three Samsung LED’s are in the bedrooms and yes I could put Humax boxes up there, but I like the in-built tuners because its less clutter in a bedroom not having the extra box and cabling.

    I am over in France BTW, but I cant see why that would make a difference?

  26. @Froggie: in your TV.. does it have a blindscan abilitity? If so, use it. Otherwise, many Set-top-boxes show the modulation mode in the settings. While BBC uses DVB-S2 in QPSK mode my set-top box is a bit stupid and I needed to set the transponder BBC One HD and BBC HD are using (10,847V) to 8PSK – 8PSK is the most common transponder mode for DVB-S2 used in Germany however, 8PSK is not “automatically DVB-S2” – just my set-top box assumes that this is the case. But yeah.. setting the transponder to 8PSK or doing a blindscan did help.

  27. I have a Humax Foxsat – HD box which receives all the latest HD channels OK.
    It received the latest software update, over the air and continues to work. I think their may be a slight improvement in picture quality for BBC1HD and BBCHD but i wouldn’t rave about it. I get C4HD and NHK which are both superior as many people comment.
    I havce noticed since the update that the BBC channels take about a second longer for the picture to appear than before otherwise I’ve not had any problem with this update

  28. To peter hb I think it takes a second longer for BBC hd channels because it is adjusting to dvb-s2.

  29. Thanxs Guys & Gals for all this info. Been without Beeb HD channels for a week B4 checking this out. Panasonic Viera from 2008. Had to do a shipping condition but all ok now. TYVM 1 & all

  30. I have just bought a Panasonic TXL32 for which has built in Freeview HD. The picture quality is far superior to my PZ81 on BBC HD, ITV HD and C4 HD. In fact the quality is as good as NHK HD is on the Freesat model. Any ideas why that would be?

  31. Rogerd: probably as it’s a newer set. Certainly the broadcast resolution of (possibly) ITV, C4 and NHK beats Freeview res as they are all higher than 1440 horizontal pixels.

  32. Upadte from @27: Well, I replaced my sky LNB for a good quality Technomate 0.1db Universal LNB Super High Gain. I now have all 5 HD Freesat channels. The BBC channels and ITV HD are all Signal 100%; Quality 100%. NHK HD & CH4HD are Signal 100%: Quality 80% so I’m happy with that. Got the LNB at Amazon and did the job myself.

  33. Rang freesat info on 08450 990 990 and they were very helpful first talking me through update on tv which sufficed with a retune and then humax foxsat.
    Glad I rang as I was going to take it through the shipping condition route and it wasn’t needed.
    Well done to freesat.

  34. Help ! Been away for 4 weeks, came back to find no BBC HD
    Anybody got any ideas? On my Technisat HDFS I did a re – search- no luck!

  35. The only way I can get all the HD channels correctly on a FortecStar is by uploading the channel list from somebody else on the Sat/digi TV support forum.
    I am told this is because the channel database has not been updated on Freesat. Is this bunkum?

  36. BBC say I can not get HD on post code CT9 3QW? When will I get HD? just got my freesat box and dish. Derek

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