Mass Media & Technology

ITV Channel Islands HD

Can’t Remember if this has been answered

This site closed in March 2021 and is now a read-only archive
RK
Rkolsen
I think I’ve asked this before but I can’t find it. I know the Channel Islands had issues getting the full ITV “bouquet” because they weren’t fully owned by ITV until recently. But I am wondering why they aren’t on Freeview HD or why something from the mainland isn’t passed through. Maybe I’m crazy but I seem to recall a discussion that the HD freeview mux is encoded as normal with the same encoder as the mainland but when it gets to the Channel Islands transmitters the PID’s are stripped out rendering ITV HD useless. But why after all these year nothing OTA?

Naturally they can get ITV HD via Freesat and ITV London.
MI
TheMike
ITV Channel Islands remains the only ITV region without an HD service.

The current Freeview listing is here, showing LCN103 ITV HD unticked in the Channel Islands column:
https://www.freeview.co.uk/corporate/platform-management/channel-listings-industry-professionals
NG
noggin Founding member
I think I’ve asked this before but I can’t find it. I know the Channel Islands had issues getting the full ITV “bouquet” because they weren’t fully owned by ITV until recently. But I am wondering why they aren’t on Freeview HD or why something from the mainland isn’t passed through. Maybe I’m crazy but I seem to recall a discussion that the HD freeview mux is encoded as normal with the same encoder as the mainland but when it gets to the Channel Islands transmitters the PID’s are stripped out rendering ITV HD useless. But why after all these year nothing OTA?

Naturally they can get ITV HD via Freesat and ITV London.


AIUI the PSB2 D3+4 mux now carries the ITV plc ITV2,3 etc. channels (in SD) on the Channel Islands. However PSB3 still doesn't carry ITV HD there (a legacy from when Channel wasn't part of ITV plc)

My guess is that the difference is because ITV/C4 jointly own (I think) D3+4 who fund Arqiva's transmission for that channel, but the BBC operate PSB3 (the HD mux that carries BBC One HD, BBC Two HD, CBBC HD, C4 HD, C5 HD - and ITV HD outside of the Channel Islands) and it may be ITV aren't interested in paying to make ITV HD available or the costs to reverse the removal of ITV HD from the mux aren't deemed worthwhile for the tiny audiences? (As you point out Channel Islands viewers can receive ITV HD via satellite)
LL
London Lite Founding member
Also worth noting that Sky and Freesat viewers still don't get ITV Channel TV or Border Scotland in HD (It can be manually tuned to another ITV HD region however). Presumably these two areas aren't cost effective to add the channel in HD currently.
MA
Markymark
I think I’ve asked this before but I can’t find it. I know the Channel Islands had issues getting the full ITV “bouquet” because they weren’t fully owned by ITV until recently. But I am wondering why they aren’t on Freeview HD or why something from the mainland isn’t passed through. Maybe I’m crazy but I seem to recall a discussion that the HD freeview mux is encoded as normal with the same encoder as the mainland but when it gets to the Channel Islands transmitters the PID’s are stripped out rendering ITV HD useless. But why after all these year nothing OTA?

Naturally they can get ITV HD via Freesat and ITV London.


AIUI the PSB2 D3+4 mux now carries the ITV plc ITV2,3 etc. channels (in SD) on the Channel Islands. However PSB3 still doesn't carry ITV HD there (a legacy from when Channel wasn't part of ITV plc)

My guess is that the difference is because ITV/C4 jointly own (I think) D3+4 who fund Arqiva's transmission for that channel, but the BBC operate PSB3 (the HD mux that carries BBC One HD, BBC Two HD, CBBC HD, C4 HD, C5 HD - and ITV HD outside of the Channel Islands) and it may be ITV aren't interested in paying to make ITV HD available or the costs to reverse the removal of ITV HD from the mux aren't deemed worthwhile for the tiny audiences? (As you point out Channel Islands viewers can receive ITV HD via satellite)


And ITV London HD is apparently in the PSB 3 transport stream on the CIs, it's just (as Rkolsen says) it's chopped out of the SI
RK
Rkolsen
Didn’t Channel Islands move to a new facility a few years ago? I assume it’s all HD? Don’t know why they wouldn’t launch it HD. But then again from what I’ve heard ITV doesn’t want to launch more than what they have unless the BBC splits with them.
NG
noggin Founding member
I think I’ve asked this before but I can’t find it. I know the Channel Islands had issues getting the full ITV “bouquet” because they weren’t fully owned by ITV until recently. But I am wondering why they aren’t on Freeview HD or why something from the mainland isn’t passed through. Maybe I’m crazy but I seem to recall a discussion that the HD freeview mux is encoded as normal with the same encoder as the mainland but when it gets to the Channel Islands transmitters the PID’s are stripped out rendering ITV HD useless. But why after all these year nothing OTA?

Naturally they can get ITV HD via Freesat and ITV London.


AIUI the PSB2 D3+4 mux now carries the ITV plc ITV2,3 etc. channels (in SD) on the Channel Islands. However PSB3 still doesn't carry ITV HD there (a legacy from when Channel wasn't part of ITV plc)

My guess is that the difference is because ITV/C4 jointly own (I think) D3+4 who fund Arqiva's transmission for that channel, but the BBC operate PSB3 (the HD mux that carries BBC One HD, BBC Two HD, CBBC HD, C4 HD, C5 HD - and ITV HD outside of the Channel Islands) and it may be ITV aren't interested in paying to make ITV HD available or the costs to reverse the removal of ITV HD from the mux aren't deemed worthwhile for the tiny audiences? (As you point out Channel Islands viewers can receive ITV HD via satellite)


And ITV London HD is apparently in the PSB 3 transport stream on the CIs, it's just (as Rkolsen says) it's chopped out of the SI


So the PIDs 201,202,203 etc. for the video and audio etc. for the ITV HD service are there in the transport stream, but there is just no entry in the SI Service Information table? So in theory you can receive ITV HD if you can create your own SI data and have the skills to do so. I'd have assumed they'd have replaced the PIDs with null packets.
NG
noggin Founding member
Didn’t Channel Islands move to a new facility a few years ago? I assume it’s all HD? Don’t know why they wouldn’t launch it HD. But then again from what I’ve heard ITV doesn’t want to launch more than what they have unless the BBC splits with them.


I'm not sure ITV Channel Islands having an HD facility is that relevant to their broadcast in HD.

The PSB3 encoding almost certainly takes place at both of two BBC facilities (The BBC encode all the services in PSB3 and mux them together centrally in two diverse locations), so any HD version of ITV Channel Islands would need to reach these two locations in England for broadcast on The Channel Islands.

I don't know if (though I doubt) there are any commercial playout facilities at ITV Channel Islands these days - so the chances are that ITV Channel is played-out (i.e. the channel is assembled) from Red Bee in Chiswick or Leeds (also in England), so the Channel Islands ITV studio has to be fed to that location for news to be added? There is no requirement for connectivity directly between their studios in Jersey and the transmitter in Jersey.

That would mean HD circuits from ITV Channel Islands studios in Jersey to Red Bee in Chiswick or Leeds, an HD playout channel in Chiswick or Leeds (probably two for redundancy?), then HD circuits for ITV Channel HD from Chiswick/Leeds to the BBC, and a separate statmux chain - i.e. dual redundant HD encoders for BBC One, BBC Two, ITV, C4, C5 and CBBC HD for PSB3 Channel Islands. (Currently I doubt there is a requirement for a separate PSB3 Channel Islands statmux operation)

That's all quite a big ticket for such a small number of advertiser eyeballs.
Last edited by noggin on 13 March 2021 5:41pm
LL
London Lite Founding member
Didn’t Channel Islands move to a new facility a few years ago? I assume it’s all HD? Don’t know why they wouldn’t launch it HD. But then again from what I’ve heard ITV doesn’t want to launch more than what they have unless the BBC splits with them.


I'm not sure ITV Channel Islands having an HD facility is that relevant to their broadcast in HD. The PSB 3 encoding almost certainly takes place at two BBC facilities (The BBC encode all the services in PSB3 and mux them together centrally) and I don't know if there are any commercial playout facilities at ITV Channel Islands these days - so the chances are that ITV Channel is played (i.e. the channel is assembled) at Red Bee in Chiswick or Leeds, so the Channel Islands ITV studio has to be fed to that location for news to be added? There is no requirement for connectivity directly between their studios in Jersey and the transmitter in Jersey.


Channel is played out from Chiswick.
OV
Orry Verducci
It's worth noting that ITV HD still isn't on the Sky EPG in the Channel Islands, although it can of course be manually tuned, so I suspect there's more to this than them simply not reversing the stripping of ITV HD from the PSB 3 PAT/SDT SI tables.

My guess would be there's something carried on the English regions that they can't legally broadcast in the islands, likely the adverts as many of the advertised products and services won't be available in the islands.

Clearly they've taken the decision not to launch a regional variant of ITV HD for the islands yet, presumably as it's not cost effective as London Lite suggests, so they've had to drop the channel entirely rather than opt for the nearest English region like they do for the rest of the country.

Didn’t Channel Islands move to a new facility a few years ago? I assume it’s all HD? Don’t know why they wouldn’t launch it HD. But then again from what I’ve heard ITV doesn’t want to launch more than what they have unless the BBC splits with them.


Yes the new facility is operating in HD, and I suspect playout is as well given that Channel is played out from ITV Pres in London, which is entirely HD for all the other regions.

The issue will be ongoing dispute with the BBC regarding who pays for new infrastructure for PSB 3, which has resulted in most the country receiving the wrong region on ITV HD. ITV point viewers who are looking for the right region to Sky/Freesat, but given the small population for the islands it likely isn't yet cost effective to uplink ITV HD for them.

So the PIDs 201,202,203 etc. for the video and audio etc. for the ITV HD service are there in the transport stream, but there is just no entry in the SI Service Information table? So in theory you can receive ITV HD if you can create your own SI data and have the skills to do so. I'd have assumed they'd have replaced the PIDs with null packets.


They've gone for the cheap and easy option. Replacing those PIDs with null packets costs more as it would require a multiplexer specifically for the islands. Dropping it from the SI is easier as that infrastructure is already in place for all the muxes nationwide, as Digital UK/Arqiva insert regional SI data on to each mux at each transmitter.
EL
eladkse
My guess would be there's something carried on the English regions that they can't legally broadcast in the islands, likely the adverts as many of the advertised products and services won't be available in the islands.


Historically, Jackpot247 certainly wasn’t allowed to be broadcast in CI. So a rebroadcast of another region’s HD variant was definietly not possible unless they blacked it out (which would require seperate playout, muxing, etc).

They shut shop July 2019...so pandemic aside, it’s only been six months or so since then. Possible ITV simply haven’t gotten around to doing anything about it.
OV
Orry Verducci
They shut shop July 2019...so pandemic aside, it’s only been six months or so since then. Possible ITV simply haven’t gotten around to doing anything about it.

I very much doubt that. The people at ITV responsible for these decisions are definitely working and making them, as evidenced by the launch of the new regions late last year. Sky are also still making EPG changes when requested, as are Arqiva for SI changes.

I'm certain that if Jackpot247 was the only reason for it being blacked out they would have at least asked Sky to put ITV HD on the Sky EPG by now, so there must be other outstanding issues, be it ads, programming variations, or something else.

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