Retain FM radio

As part of the digital Britain report, it was proposed that national FM radio be switched off to free up bandwidth for DAB broadcasts. I believe that FM radio should be retained. I also believe that if we are to switch to a digital format, there are several formats which have considerable advantages over DAB.

I suggested to the last government that FM should be retained and DAB allowed to die. Their response was that DAB had to proceed since there were already a few million DAB sets in the UK. The fact that there are hundreds of millions of FM receivers in the UK seemed lost on them.

Why is this idea important?

As part of the digital Britain report, it was proposed that national FM radio be switched off to free up bandwidth for DAB broadcasts. I believe that FM radio should be retained. I also believe that if we are to switch to a digital format, there are several formats which have considerable advantages over DAB.

I suggested to the last government that FM should be retained and DAB allowed to die. Their response was that DAB had to proceed since there were already a few million DAB sets in the UK. The fact that there are hundreds of millions of FM receivers in the UK seemed lost on them.

20 Million non DAB vehicles by 2015

It is estimated that there will still be 20 million vehicles that will not have any form of DAB radio by 2015 and although the Culture Minster Ed Vaizey has put off the shutdown of the FM transmitters until at least 50% of listening is digital, and when national DAB coverage is comparable to FM. While locl DAB coverage must reach 90% of the population and all major roads.

This is all very fine in theory but total coverage of DAB signals will never match those of FM and there is still the problem of of tramsmitting traffic information – currently transmitted within the FM singnals of Classic FM.

There are now many thousans of vehicles now fitted with built in traffic information devices and many more portable GPS units that also rely on these signals!

I would suggest that 2020 might still be too early to swich entirely to digital radio for both car and home users.

 

the industry might require an early change, but the industry as a whole have been very slow to move on digita, especially the car industry.

 

Keep FM going as long as possible – the quaility is far better and the coverage and availability is far in excess of DAB – Nick Ward, Bedford

Why is this idea important?

It is estimated that there will still be 20 million vehicles that will not have any form of DAB radio by 2015 and although the Culture Minster Ed Vaizey has put off the shutdown of the FM transmitters until at least 50% of listening is digital, and when national DAB coverage is comparable to FM. While locl DAB coverage must reach 90% of the population and all major roads.

This is all very fine in theory but total coverage of DAB signals will never match those of FM and there is still the problem of of tramsmitting traffic information – currently transmitted within the FM singnals of Classic FM.

There are now many thousans of vehicles now fitted with built in traffic information devices and many more portable GPS units that also rely on these signals!

I would suggest that 2020 might still be too early to swich entirely to digital radio for both car and home users.

 

the industry might require an early change, but the industry as a whole have been very slow to move on digita, especially the car industry.

 

Keep FM going as long as possible – the quaility is far better and the coverage and availability is far in excess of DAB – Nick Ward, Bedford

Bypass DAB and promote internet

Promote radio braodcasting via internet (no cost in expensive new aerials), and businesses will start to make more internet wi-fi radios using cableless routers already in place in most househoolds. The added benefit is that you do not need Megahertz bandwidths to stream radio. You could also keep the exisitng FM transmitters for use in car radios.

Why is this idea important?

Promote radio braodcasting via internet (no cost in expensive new aerials), and businesses will start to make more internet wi-fi radios using cableless routers already in place in most househoolds. The added benefit is that you do not need Megahertz bandwidths to stream radio. You could also keep the exisitng FM transmitters for use in car radios.

Remove threat to FM radio

In common with probably millions of people all over the UK I would like to be able to retain the FM radio signal. Please review the plans for Digital Broadcasting; even when the take-up of digital radio increases in the population, please do not switch off the analogue FM signal. This would lead to horrendous waste and expense all over the country.

Why is this idea important?

In common with probably millions of people all over the UK I would like to be able to retain the FM radio signal. Please review the plans for Digital Broadcasting; even when the take-up of digital radio increases in the population, please do not switch off the analogue FM signal. This would lead to horrendous waste and expense all over the country.

DAB Radio and Digital Economy Act

I understand that this act includes for the provision of switching off analogue radio and it's replacement with DAB (digital). This is just plain bonkers for the reasons below.

DAB is a poor performer and is already, in effect,  the betamax of digital radio, greedy for bandwidth and incapable of providing the hi fi sound currently available from a properly set up FM tuner. It is no accident that there are very few hi fi DAB tuners on the market capable of integrating into a  hi fi stack. There are other, much better, standards for digital radio in Europe (DAB+ et al) which utilise much better compression algorithms than does DAB

Advertising for DAB has always been misleading, starting with the statements that it provided CD quality sound. It doesn't by a large margin. Also, it is depressing in the extreme to see the current advertising campaign to persuade us to hand in analogue for DAB with the dubious stated aim of refurbishing the older stuff with a view to its redistribution to Africa etc. The problems with this approach are listed below and the effect is that radios handed in will surely finish up being scrapped rather than recycled.

  • Long wave is little used outside parts of Europe
  • Medium Wave is effectively unusable in large parts of Africa because of high static levels which is why they make much use of the tropical band frequencies. Tropical band is beyond the capability of most radios currently in use in the UK.
  • VHF is line of sight and therefore of little use in mountainous regions of the world.
  • The Baylis wind up radio was designed for third world conditions. All of the radios that will be handed in require either mains or battery power which is hardly appropriate for their intended use.
  • Will all the car radios that will be rendered useless also be sent to Africa?

DAB radios are very power hungry when compared to the current crop of radios. In the current climate do we really need to be swapping low power requirement for high?

It is not clear where the demand for this proposal comes from unless it is to sell off part of the radio spectrum. However, even this seems unlikely as the proposal would be for the freed up FM spectrum to be used by more local radio – dreadful thought.

To summarise, this seems to have been thought up by someone who doesn't really understand the issues at stake, to solve a need that isn't there or resolve a problem that doesn't exist. It seems to have been rushed through in the same way as the other main aspects of the act and the whole lot should be ditched and rethought.

Why is this idea important?

I understand that this act includes for the provision of switching off analogue radio and it's replacement with DAB (digital). This is just plain bonkers for the reasons below.

DAB is a poor performer and is already, in effect,  the betamax of digital radio, greedy for bandwidth and incapable of providing the hi fi sound currently available from a properly set up FM tuner. It is no accident that there are very few hi fi DAB tuners on the market capable of integrating into a  hi fi stack. There are other, much better, standards for digital radio in Europe (DAB+ et al) which utilise much better compression algorithms than does DAB

Advertising for DAB has always been misleading, starting with the statements that it provided CD quality sound. It doesn't by a large margin. Also, it is depressing in the extreme to see the current advertising campaign to persuade us to hand in analogue for DAB with the dubious stated aim of refurbishing the older stuff with a view to its redistribution to Africa etc. The problems with this approach are listed below and the effect is that radios handed in will surely finish up being scrapped rather than recycled.

  • Long wave is little used outside parts of Europe
  • Medium Wave is effectively unusable in large parts of Africa because of high static levels which is why they make much use of the tropical band frequencies. Tropical band is beyond the capability of most radios currently in use in the UK.
  • VHF is line of sight and therefore of little use in mountainous regions of the world.
  • The Baylis wind up radio was designed for third world conditions. All of the radios that will be handed in require either mains or battery power which is hardly appropriate for their intended use.
  • Will all the car radios that will be rendered useless also be sent to Africa?

DAB radios are very power hungry when compared to the current crop of radios. In the current climate do we really need to be swapping low power requirement for high?

It is not clear where the demand for this proposal comes from unless it is to sell off part of the radio spectrum. However, even this seems unlikely as the proposal would be for the freed up FM spectrum to be used by more local radio – dreadful thought.

To summarise, this seems to have been thought up by someone who doesn't really understand the issues at stake, to solve a need that isn't there or resolve a problem that doesn't exist. It seems to have been rushed through in the same way as the other main aspects of the act and the whole lot should be ditched and rethought.

Digital Radio Change Over

The BBC (ex-Auntie) has invested heavily in this 30 year old technology and is going to be relied upon by the Government to determine when the majority of the listening public have switched over to DAB. Is the BBC to be trusted to provide an unbiased assessment in light of the investment? Living outside London and the south east (Northumberland) we are in the minority and our inability to be heard (sic), as is still the case with broadband connectivity, means that, when anaglogue is switched off, we will no longer be able to hear J Humphries et al. Yes, employ new technology for all the benefits its offers the licence payer, but to enforce the introduction of an out-dated DAB system and to shut down the analogue network that clearly is not yet 'broken', strikes me as being irresponsible. Are any other states introducing DAB at present, what else is available – there may even be a financial, but not necessarily face-saving, benefits!

Why is this idea important?

The BBC (ex-Auntie) has invested heavily in this 30 year old technology and is going to be relied upon by the Government to determine when the majority of the listening public have switched over to DAB. Is the BBC to be trusted to provide an unbiased assessment in light of the investment? Living outside London and the south east (Northumberland) we are in the minority and our inability to be heard (sic), as is still the case with broadband connectivity, means that, when anaglogue is switched off, we will no longer be able to hear J Humphries et al. Yes, employ new technology for all the benefits its offers the licence payer, but to enforce the introduction of an out-dated DAB system and to shut down the analogue network that clearly is not yet 'broken', strikes me as being irresponsible. Are any other states introducing DAB at present, what else is available – there may even be a financial, but not necessarily face-saving, benefits!

Keep FM radio

No compulsory switch-off of FM transmissions to compel us to change to digital, making our many FM receivers useless. 

Digital uses much more power, and incurs considerable capital costs [sets are much dearer], with no way of recyling the old radios.   Will not be able to go from one room to another set with continuity of programme.  Music will be less faithfully reproduced.

 Also, the Time Signal will be wrong!

Why is this idea important?

No compulsory switch-off of FM transmissions to compel us to change to digital, making our many FM receivers useless. 

Digital uses much more power, and incurs considerable capital costs [sets are much dearer], with no way of recyling the old radios.   Will not be able to go from one room to another set with continuity of programme.  Music will be less faithfully reproduced.

 Also, the Time Signal will be wrong!

Why switch off DAB?

DAB is more inefficient in terms of the power required to power the radio

DAB does not have full coverage of the country

DAB is not currently standard kit within the vast majority of cars

 

Why are you insisting on fixing something that isn't broken? Keep FM and can DAB, which is an inferior digital product that I can't get, so I will just lose my radio signals in 2015.

 

Bloody ridiculous…haven't you got better things to be doing rather than forcing peiople to spend unecessary hundreds of pounds on radios?

Why is this idea important?

DAB is more inefficient in terms of the power required to power the radio

DAB does not have full coverage of the country

DAB is not currently standard kit within the vast majority of cars

 

Why are you insisting on fixing something that isn't broken? Keep FM and can DAB, which is an inferior digital product that I can't get, so I will just lose my radio signals in 2015.

 

Bloody ridiculous…haven't you got better things to be doing rather than forcing peiople to spend unecessary hundreds of pounds on radios?

DAB Radio

The turning off of theFM broadcasting is quite wrong.  There are millions of radios that would be effected and it is quite wrong that this is being imposed on the public.  By all means run both in tandum but do not turn off the signal – I can't imagine any contry in Europe planning to go down this road!!!

Why is this idea important?

The turning off of theFM broadcasting is quite wrong.  There are millions of radios that would be effected and it is quite wrong that this is being imposed on the public.  By all means run both in tandum but do not turn off the signal – I can't imagine any contry in Europe planning to go down this road!!!

Digital radio

I have spent thousands of pounds on FM radio equipment which will be made useless by the Bill sneaked in at the end of the last Parliament.

Repeal the legislation at the first opportunity.

Why is this idea important?

I have spent thousands of pounds on FM radio equipment which will be made useless by the Bill sneaked in at the end of the last Parliament.

Repeal the legislation at the first opportunity.

repeal digital radio switchover requirement

This doesn't quite fit any of your categories, so I'll put it here for somewhere to put it.

The switchover to digital radio is a waste of time, money, effort and carbon emissions.

Digital radio uses significantly more electricity than FM, so the switchover will increase carbon emissions permanently just when we're trying to reduce them.

The quality of broadcast is inferior, particularly affecting all music stations.

Most households have multiple radios (I have 8, excluding the car) and the cost of replacing them all will be prohibitive. Additionally, the manufacture and purchase of all these extra radios will waste resources and increase one-off carbon emissions.

Old radios, we are told, will receive the new stations and so not be 'redundant' – but I want to listen to the stations I choose, not some mythical new ones. I want BBC Radios 3 and 4 to continue on FM!

Changing radios in cars will be difficult and very expensive.

Does anyone really want all the extra radio stations we're supposed to get?

Who is supposed to benefit from this switchover?

This is a wasteful, unnecessary, expensive nonsense – please drop it forthwith.

Why is this idea important?

This doesn't quite fit any of your categories, so I'll put it here for somewhere to put it.

The switchover to digital radio is a waste of time, money, effort and carbon emissions.

Digital radio uses significantly more electricity than FM, so the switchover will increase carbon emissions permanently just when we're trying to reduce them.

The quality of broadcast is inferior, particularly affecting all music stations.

Most households have multiple radios (I have 8, excluding the car) and the cost of replacing them all will be prohibitive. Additionally, the manufacture and purchase of all these extra radios will waste resources and increase one-off carbon emissions.

Old radios, we are told, will receive the new stations and so not be 'redundant' – but I want to listen to the stations I choose, not some mythical new ones. I want BBC Radios 3 and 4 to continue on FM!

Changing radios in cars will be difficult and very expensive.

Does anyone really want all the extra radio stations we're supposed to get?

Who is supposed to benefit from this switchover?

This is a wasteful, unnecessary, expensive nonsense – please drop it forthwith.

Rescind the discontinuance of FM/AM radio

By discontinuing AM and FM radio transmission, the Government is committing the UK to several billion in unnecessary expenditure. 

My four radios will cost over £500 to replace with digital radios and equivalent facilities.  If that is repeated across 15 million households the cost to the country would be at least £7 billion.  A digital car radio will cost at least £300.  There are 20 million vehicles in the UK so the cost to replace all those radios could be in excess of £6 billion.

The total cost to the economy will be at least £10 billion and probably nearer £15 billion.  And the reason cited is that it will free up more channels.  If this is likely and is needed by the emergency services, then it makes more sense to
  a] reduce the number of broadcasters,
  b] rationalise the frequencies and
  c] dedicate more sections of the bandwidth to emergency services
rather than committing the UK to wasting billions on not-very-good "new" facilities.

There is no need for several hundred [or thousand?] broadcasters of pop music.  This is just an ego-trip for most DJs and wastefully crowds the airwaves with the same or very similar material.

Furthermore, most digital users seem to think their new radios give no better service than FM and the coverage in remote areas of the country is reputedly rubbish!  Just because digital is the in-thing and is new doesn't make it a priori better.

Please reverse the decision.

Ray7033

Why is this idea important?

By discontinuing AM and FM radio transmission, the Government is committing the UK to several billion in unnecessary expenditure. 

My four radios will cost over £500 to replace with digital radios and equivalent facilities.  If that is repeated across 15 million households the cost to the country would be at least £7 billion.  A digital car radio will cost at least £300.  There are 20 million vehicles in the UK so the cost to replace all those radios could be in excess of £6 billion.

The total cost to the economy will be at least £10 billion and probably nearer £15 billion.  And the reason cited is that it will free up more channels.  If this is likely and is needed by the emergency services, then it makes more sense to
  a] reduce the number of broadcasters,
  b] rationalise the frequencies and
  c] dedicate more sections of the bandwidth to emergency services
rather than committing the UK to wasting billions on not-very-good "new" facilities.

There is no need for several hundred [or thousand?] broadcasters of pop music.  This is just an ego-trip for most DJs and wastefully crowds the airwaves with the same or very similar material.

Furthermore, most digital users seem to think their new radios give no better service than FM and the coverage in remote areas of the country is reputedly rubbish!  Just because digital is the in-thing and is new doesn't make it a priori better.

Please reverse the decision.

Ray7033