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mark1,658 posts since 27 Jun 2001
London London
Am I the only one who thinks BBC Radio (1 & 2 at least) are dire? Not that commercial radio is much better, but you at least hear a decent amount of music on there. Radio 2 isn't quite as bad as Radio 1, but Radio 1 certainly just seems to be endless banal waffle, with an occasional song thrown in. I always cringe whenever I have to listen to it.


But remember that most commercial music stations have very little speech content apart from at breakfast. It would be hard for the BBC to justify doing less speech content on Radios 1 and 2, unless they were playing music that can't be found anywhere else.
Steve in Pudsey10,419 posts since 4 Jan 2003
Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
I'll be interested to see what impact the new Chris Moyles show on Radio X has on the industry. Speech led with a bit of music, basically tearing up the rule book for how to do commercial music radio by doing the the same show he did at the beeb with less news and a couple of ad breaks an hour.

Seems to be getting the punters judging by social media and the podcast chart, the first rajar is some way off.
Write that down in your copybook now.
Jon8,064 posts since 11 Apr 2005
Central (West) Midlands Today
I'll be interested to see what impact the new Chris Moyles show on Radio X has on the industry. Speech led with a bit of music, basically tearing up the rule book for how to do commercial music radio by doing the the same show he did at the beeb with less news and a couple of ad breaks an hour.

I don't think Moyles is going to have any affect on the commercial radio industry, yes his show will be either a relative or massive hit but that's because he's Chris Moyles he's just about the only name in radio who can generate those numbers and that's because of the fanbase he built up at Radio 1. Also Radio X was starting from a base of having no listeners with no publicising of the service so things can only ever be viewed as a success.


Realistically it's not going to change what 'Ian & Tina' are doing on Heart Dorset.
thegeek5,105 posts since 1 Jan 2002
London London

Does that mean taking back control of channel playout, or does Red Bee/Ericsson still control that?

'Control' is the wrong term really, they do the work for the BBC, rather than have any actual 'control' over the channels

And I assume that would mean they'd ingest ITV HD, Channel 4 HD and Film 4+1 for BBCB before sending it out to Arqiva to the transmitters.

Ericsson won't be doing that, no

...although they sort of do already, as Ericsson also have the playout contract for ITV and Channel 4.

(Ingest isn't really the right word either though.)
Robert Williams726 posts since 25 Jan 2003
London London
Some users here think Radio 2 lacks focus: why couldn't they assume some of 6Music's remit while the BBC makes a significant cost saving by having one less station to transmit (same goes for 1/1xtra, 4/4extra etc).

They've tried that before - it didn't go down very well I seem to remember...

The tendency on forums like this is that the services that people suggest closing just happen to be ones that they don't personally use or enjoy. I listen to 6 Music every day and would hate to see it cut back or closed; whereas the News Channel could close tomorrow and I wouldn't miss it. I'm sure there are others that would have the opposite opinion - it all comes down to personal taste.
3
Rkolsen2,925 posts since 20 Jan 2014
BBC World News

Does that mean taking back control of channel playout, or does Red Bee/Ericsson still control that?

'Control' is the wrong term really, they do the work for the BBC, rather than have any actual 'control' over the channels

And I assume that would mean they'd ingest ITV HD, Channel 4 HD and Film 4+1 for BBCB before sending it out to Arqiva to the transmitters.

Ericsson won't be doing that, no

...although they sort of do already, as Ericsson also have the playout contract for ITV and Channel 4.

(Ingest isn't really the right word either though.)

What I was getting at is that if the BBC was handling the multiplexing would they be the ones to take the feeds from ITV/C4 HD before sending them to the transmitter?
Don’t let anyone treat you like you’re a VO/SOT when you’re a PKG.
Markymark7,301 posts since 13 Dec 2004
Meridian (North) South Today

Does that mean taking back control of channel playout, or does Red Bee/Ericsson still control that?

'Control' is the wrong term really, they do the work for the BBC, rather than have any actual 'control' over the channels

And I assume that would mean they'd ingest ITV HD, Channel 4 HD and Film 4+1 for BBCB before sending it out to Arqiva to the transmitters.

Ericsson won't be doing that, no

...although they sort of do already, as Ericsson also have the playout contract for ITV and Channel 4.

(Ingest isn't really the right word either though.)

What I was getting at is that if the BBC was handling the multiplexing would they be the ones to take the feeds from ITV/C4 HD before sending them to the transmitter?


Yes, that's the current situation with Atos, so it will be the same if the Beeb bring it back in house
noggin14,632 posts since 26 Jun 2001
I've heard that the BBC is going to be rationalising their control room infrastructure over the next few years - bringing CCA and Centralised Coding & Multiplexing back in-house (they're currently run by Atos, having been part of the BBC Technology sell-off 10 years ago), and their operations will eventually be merged with the BH radio & TV control rooms.

Does that mean taking back control of channel playout, or does Red Bee/Ericsson still control that?


And I assume that would mean they'd ingest ITV HD, Channel 4 HD and Film 4+1 for BBCB before sending it out to Arqiva to the transmitters.


I think you are confusing playout with distribution. Ingest is a playout function,

AIUI the following is the current division of responsibilities.

Ericsson (formerly known as Red Bee Media, formerly known as BBC Broadcast) handle channel playout for BBC, ITV, C4 and other channels in the UK. They will ingest the pre-recorded material (which is delivered on tape or via a DPP compliant AS11 AVCi 100Mbs file) and accept incoming live feeds from studios and OBs (I think - though this may not be the case - that ATOS handle the incoming and outgoing lines operation for Ericsson) They will operate the channel playout - working with scheduling teams from the broadcasters - to create the channels that are then routed elsewhere for distribution..

Atos (formerly Siemens, but who sold that bit of their operation to Atos. That bit being originally BBC Technology before being bought from the BBC by Siemens) handle the BBCs lines infrastructure (including the large Raman video contribution network) and satellite uplink and downlink, as well as their DSat and DTT coding and mux operations that take the (baseband I think) channel feeds (BBC SD, and BBC, ITV, C4 HD) and encodes them for transmission. I believe Atos also handle the DSat uplink.

Arqiva (which is a final merger of what was the BBC and IBA TV transmitter operation - which was sold to Crown Castle and NTL respectively) handle the fibre distribution to transmitters and the DTT transmission.
2
thegeek5,105 posts since 1 Jan 2002
London London
That's a pretty fair summary of it - though you can see why they might want to rationalise it a bit.

(I think - though this may not be the case - that ATOS handle the incoming and outgoing lines operation for Ericsson)

The delivery point for live programmes on BBC channels is still CCA (or rather its replacement, which is now in the Broadcast Centre and elsewhere); the OB or studio will line up with an engineer in CCA, who will make sure that they're across the right circuits and that all the audio tracks are in the right order, and the talkback is working correctly; they'll then pass this down some lines to ECA, Ericsson's control room (who will do the same again); and finally they'll make it available to the playout director.

This isn't the case for all of Ericsson's clients - for example, Channel 4 live programmes are picked up directly by Ericsson's MCR, without another control room in between.
Rkolsen2,925 posts since 20 Jan 2014
BBC World News
I've heard that the BBC is going to be rationalising their control room infrastructure over the next few years - bringing CCA and Centralised Coding & Multiplexing back in-house (they're currently run by Atos, having been part of the BBC Technology sell-off 10 years ago), and their operations will eventually be merged with the BH radio & TV control rooms.

Does that mean taking back control of channel playout, or does Red Bee/Ericsson still control that?


And I assume that would mean they'd ingest ITV HD, Channel 4 HD and Film 4+1 for BBCB before sending it out to Arqiva to the transmitters.


I think you are confusing playout with distribution. Ingest is a playout function,

AIUI the following is the current division of responsibilities.

Ericsson (formerly known as Red Bee Media, formerly known as BBC Broadcast) handle channel playout for BBC, ITV, C4 and other channels in the UK. They will ingest the pre-recorded material (which is delivered on tape or via a DPP compliant AS11 AVCi 100Mbs file) and accept incoming live feeds from studios and OBs (I think - though this may not be the case - that ATOS handle the incoming and outgoing lines operation for Ericsson) They will operate the channel playout - working with scheduling teams from the broadcasters - to create the channels that are then routed elsewhere for distribution..

Atos (formerly Siemens, but who sold that bit of their operation to Atos. That bit being originally BBC Technology before being bought from the BBC by Siemens) handle the BBCs lines infrastructure (including the large Raman video contribution network) and satellite uplink and downlink, as well as their DSat and DTT coding and mux operations that take the (baseband I think) channel feeds (BBC SD, and BBC, ITV, C4 HD) and encodes them for transmission. I believe Atos also handle the DSat uplink.

Arqiva (which is a final merger of what was the BBC and IBA TV transmitter operation - which was sold to Crown Castle and NTL respectively) handle the fibre distribution to transmitters and the DTT transmission.


Thank you for correcting me. MDTauk said that the BBC multiplexing in house so I assume they would be the place where the different feeds for ITV and Channel 4 HD would come in and be sent out in the simplest terms. If the BBC were handling these functions could they feasibly start rolling out HD regions (if they were equipped like London) as they would have some equipment necessary to handle the macro regions for ITV?
Don’t let anyone treat you like you’re a VO/SOT when you’re a PKG.
Inspector Sands13,966 posts since 25 Aug 2004
Thank you for correcting me. MDTauk said that the BBC multiplexing in house so I assume they would be the place where the different feeds for ITV and Channel 4 HD would come in and be sent out in the simplest terms. If the BBC were handling these functions could they feasibly start rolling out HD regions (if they were equipped like London) as they would have some equipment necessary to handle the macro regions for ITV?

There's nothing to stop them doing it now..... except for all the work and expense it would take.

In-house or out of house it's still the same broadcast infrastructure, all that really changes is just who pays the staff who look after it. I'd imagine that as the equipment is replaced over the next few years everythign will be re-engineered for HD