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62305822,618 posts since 19 Aug 2005 Recently warned
STV Central Reporting Scotland
That's a challenge to get 13 😉

Yup, from 9pm to 2am, it's a Halloween takeover.

There's a total of 2 Halloween idents (they alternate in every junction) and 13 bumpers across the schedule, IPPs change to the #13NightsOfFrights branding after 9pm.

Really wanted to go big this year.
Is the next post dreaded?
dbl9,018 posts since 11 Jun 2004
London London
That's a challenge to get 13 😉

Yup, from 9pm to 2am, it's a Halloween takeover.

There's a total of 2 Halloween idents (they alternate in every junction) and 13 bumpers across the schedule, IPPs change to the #13NightsOfFrights branding after 9pm.

Really wanted to go big this year.

Maybe not so hard...
1
623058 gave kudos
kernow947 posts since 18 Jan 2006
I notice this morning on Virgin that Gold has been replaced with Gold HD, and the SD version is now no longer available. I wonder if this is the start of them removing SD/HD simulcasts?

They won't be able do that on all platforms, as there will be viewers on Sky who either don't have HD equipment, or have a non-HD subscription (like myself).
james-20013,710 posts since 13 Sep 2015
Central (East) East Midlands Today
I notice this morning on Virgin that Gold has been replaced with Gold HD, and the SD version is now no longer available. I wonder if this is the start of them removing SD/HD simulcasts?

Yes, which started with Bloomberg and France 24.


One thing that's noticable though is in all three cases, the HD version wasn't carried before, they've just switched the existing channel from SD to HD. I don't think they've taken off any simulcasts yet.
Mike516 (previously a516) 660 posts since 29 Jan 2010
Central (East) East Midlands Today
I notice this morning on Virgin that Gold has been replaced with Gold HD, and the SD version is now no longer available. I wonder if this is the start of them removing SD/HD simulcasts?

Yes, which started with Bloomberg and France 24.


One thing that's noticable though is in all three cases, the HD version wasn't carried before, they've just switched the existing channel from SD to HD. I don't think they've taken off any simulcasts yet.

FreeSports and Racing UK are two more channels that have switched to HD only on Virgin Media. Gold HD officially arrived on Virgin on 25th September 2018 replacing SD, but it's mostly upscaled 4:3 content.
There is technically no reason why any SD/HD simulcast should be retained on any channel on Virgin Media UK, other than in those regions where there isn't the correct regional version of BBC One, BBC Two, ITV/STV or Channel 4 in HD.
noggin13,895 posts since 26 Jun 2001
Yes, which started with Bloomberg and France 24.


One thing that's noticable though is in all three cases, the HD version wasn't carried before, they've just switched the existing channel from SD to HD. I don't think they've taken off any simulcasts yet.

FreeSports and Racing UK are two more channels that have switched to HD only on Virgin Media. Gold HD officially arrived on Virgin on 25th September 2018 replacing SD, but it's mostly upscaled 4:3 content.
There is technically no reason why any SD/HD simulcast should be retained on any channel on Virgin Media UK, other than in those regions where there isn't the correct regional version of BBC One, BBC Two, ITV/STV or Channel 4 in HD.


Are all Virgin boxes in subscribers' homes now HD capable (even if connected to an SD set)? The other usual argument for retaining SD channels (for SD viewers) is that PVR recordings of SD services usually take up a bit less space than HD, so recording the SD version increases your PVR's capacity in 'recording hours' terms.

I guess Virgin are in a much better position than Sky, as they have full control over their set top box inventory, whereas Sky presumably still have a significant number of viewers who own SD boxes (plus AIUI the DSO areas that provided subsidised SD Sky boxes with EPG mapping cards to get the right BBC and ITV variations to those who qualififed for them) which make retiring SD services trickier?
Mike516 (previously a516) 660 posts since 29 Jan 2010
Central (East) East Midlands Today

One thing that's noticable though is in all three cases, the HD version wasn't carried before, they've just switched the existing channel from SD to HD. I don't think they've taken off any simulcasts yet.

FreeSports and Racing UK are two more channels that have switched to HD only on Virgin Media. Gold HD officially arrived on Virgin on 25th September 2018 replacing SD, but it's mostly upscaled 4:3 content.
There is technically no reason why any SD/HD simulcast should be retained on any channel on Virgin Media UK, other than in those regions where there isn't the correct regional version of BBC One, BBC Two, ITV/STV or Channel 4 in HD.


Are all Virgin boxes in subscribers' homes now HD capable (even if connected to an SD set)? The other usual argument for retaining SD channels (for SD viewers) is that PVR recordings of SD services usually take up a bit less space than HD, so recording the SD version increases your PVR's capacity in 'recording hours' terms.

I guess Virgin are in a much better position than Sky, as they have full control over their set top box inventory, whereas Sky presumably still have a significant number of viewers who own SD boxes (plus AIUI the DSO areas that provided subsidised SD Sky boxes with EPG mapping cards to get the right BBC and ITV variations to those who qualififed for them) which make retiring SD services trickier?


Certainly when DSO was in Derbyshire, I know of households on the Help Scheme that got a basic Freesat SD box (normal retail price at the time was around £40-50) rather than Sky.
Incidentally, over in Germany, where you could easily buy a satellite receiver that worked with Sky, it didn't stop them from moving all of their own SD and HD channels to DVB-S2 MPEG4, meaning older SD-only devices would no longer receive their channels.

Back to UKTV and as long as HD versions of Dave, Drama, Home, Really and Yesterday are encrypted and the other's aren't then there will always be a need to provide two versions. For the remaining channels, it will depend on how much the pay TV platforms want to pay - it appears the HD channels are being held back to those operators that want to pay more or want to have an exclusive on their platform.
Last edited by Mike516 on 30 October 2018 12:12pm
noggin13,895 posts since 26 Jun 2001
FreeSports and Racing UK are two more channels that have switched to HD only on Virgin Media. Gold HD officially arrived on Virgin on 25th September 2018 replacing SD, but it's mostly upscaled 4:3 content.
There is technically no reason why any SD/HD simulcast should be retained on any channel on Virgin Media UK, other than in those regions where there isn't the correct regional version of BBC One, BBC Two, ITV/STV or Channel 4 in HD.


Are all Virgin boxes in subscribers' homes now HD capable (even if connected to an SD set)? The other usual argument for retaining SD channels (for SD viewers) is that PVR recordings of SD services usually take up a bit less space than HD, so recording the SD version increases your PVR's capacity in 'recording hours' terms.

I guess Virgin are in a much better position than Sky, as they have full control over their set top box inventory, whereas Sky presumably still have a significant number of viewers who own SD boxes (plus AIUI the DSO areas that provided subsidised SD Sky boxes with EPG mapping cards to get the right BBC and ITV variations to those who qualififed for them) which make retiring SD services trickier?


Certainly when DSO was in Derbyshire, I know of households on the Help Scheme that got a basic Freesat SD box (normal retail price at the time was around £40-50) rather than Sky.
Incidentally, over in Germany, where you could easily buy a satellite receiver that worked with Sky, it didn't stop them from moving all of their own SD and HD channels to DVB-S2 MPEG4, meaning older SD-only devices would no longer receive their channels.

Back to UKTV and as long as HD versions of Dave, Drama, Home, Really and Yesterday are encrypted and the other's aren't then there will always be a need to provide two versions. For the remaining channels, it will depend on how much the pay TV platforms want to pay - it appears the HD channels are being held back to those operators that want to pay more or want to have an exclusive on their platform.


The UK DSO subsidised receiver deals were done on a regional basis. Sky had the contract for at least one region.
Orry Verducci1,588 posts since 1 Feb 2005
Anglia (West) Look East

Are all Virgin boxes in subscribers' homes now HD capable (even if connected to an SD set)? The other usual argument for retaining SD channels (for SD viewers) is that PVR recordings of SD services usually take up a bit less space than HD, so recording the SD version increases your PVR's capacity in 'recording hours' terms.

I guess Virgin are in a much better position than Sky, as they have full control over their set top box inventory, whereas Sky presumably still have a significant number of viewers who own SD boxes (plus AIUI the DSO areas that provided subsidised SD Sky boxes with EPG mapping cards to get the right BBC and ITV variations to those who qualififed for them) which make retiring SD services trickier?

I believe Virgin has been offering free upgrades to their new V6 box for customers with older boxes, going as far as sending out letters to customers to promote the offer, so it would certainly appear their intention is to retire the old SD boxes. I imagine anyone who phones up to complain they can't get a channel any more will be offered the free upgrade.


I think the main reason Sky aren't dropping SD services yet is down to the fact that HD is still not part of their basic 'Entertainment' subscription package, it's currently a £5 per month add on. Only Sky Cinema, and in the last couple weeks Sky Sports, include HD as standard. As you say there is also a few SD boxes still in customers homes, although most people do now seem to have HD boxes as it has been the standard supplied box for a few years (with Sky Q now the standard box).
Last edited by Orry Verducci on 30 October 2018 11:14pm