Digital Radio


I know!

When I started getting Canberra FM clearly, I got my DAB radio out and gave it a try.

I did a full rescan and was amazed when it gave me 73 stations (including the usual Sydney ones).


I would like to know what the station limit is of a digital radio because I seem to be able to scan in two cities’ worth and after that, the receivers I’ve tried then overload and begin deleting non in market scanned stations.

It was going to be my next questions in AM/FM DX thread, how are you getting on with digital reception, will ask it. Best I’ve managed is Brisbane at the water tower Byron Bay and Lennox Head water tower.

The Canberra result should only improve when the correct ERP of 20kW is established. When will that be again?


I guess the capacity of how many DAB stations a receiver can recognise and store will vary depending on the brand and model of radio in use.

Though I did notice that my radio didn’t scan in any ABC stations from Canberra (there was no sign of 666 - not sure if they are supposed to be on DAB or not since I know it’s still only a trial).


Yes, they’re on. Nationals are on their own multiplex as of a date in January, they moved off the trial altogether.

Commercials are still on the trial, look at the freq allocation, that’s a mighty old TX keeping them on air, the old CRA test TX. Pull your cheque book out and get the proper one now the ERP has been finalised.


I’ve had Melbourne DAB+ while flying over Mildura en route to Perth in November 2010. Approx 495km while at 35,000ft in the air.


That is incredible!!! Is that with the wip antenna?

From what I understand Canberra Dab+ will move to the same frequency block as Sydney so this maybe your last chance to receive Canberra, correct me if I am wrong.

My best dxing for Canberra Dab+ was one bar (not decodable) on my Pure Move from the southern lookout at the Gib at Bowral in non tropo conditions, that was a couple of years ago. I have not tried since.


Yes, just with the whip antenna - my Sangean doesn’t have an external input.

Oh no, that’s not good news about the Canberra frequency change! Please say it ain’t so!

I’m hopeful that this will be a good tropo season and that I might get a couple more opportunities to get it again this summer before that happens.

Next time though I should try for Canberra DTV. I know it’s on the same frequencies as Sydney, but HOPEFULLY with the different polarity, and some nulling of Sydney, it MIGHT just be possible.


Don’t worry. The Commercial/Community stations will broadcast on 8D, which is not used by any of the Sydney DAB+ services, so you should still get them in extreme conditions, probably even better than currently, as the Canberra DAB+ services would eventually transmit at 20kW ERP as opposed to the 3.1kW (!) ERP that is currently operating under a Trial licence.

I wouldn’t be surprised if the higher parts of the Southern Highlands (eg south facing areas of Mt Gibraltar) would get permanent reception of the Canberra DAB+ services under the proposed 20kW ERP.


I Have looked up the commercial licence on ACMA and the commercials in Canberra have been licenced to 8d at 5KW from Black Mountain.

I was getting this information from one of the old planning documents that was suggesting co-channeling Canberra with Sydney for all services. Hopeful ACMA sticks with 8d and does not do a restack later on.

Have you saved the Canberra Dab+ stations in your radio for future dxing Radiohead?


I’d imagine that the Canberra commercial/community multiplex won’t be co-channelled with a Sydney multiplex in the immediate future, but may have to be in the long run if DAB+ is eventually rolled out to Newcastle, Central Coast, Wollongong, etc.

Would I be right by presuming that the ABC/SBS services for Canberra are transmitted on 9C? If so, that probably explains why Radiohead didn’t get those last night although in fairness, you wouldn’t be missing out on anything that couldn’t be heard from the Sydney transmitters except for ABC Radio Canberra! :stuck_out_tongue:




Good to know.

Also while I’m here, Christmas Hope is now broadcasting on the DAB+ Sydney 1 (9A) multiplex at 48kbps.


That poses a bit of a dilemma for me.

I will probably remove them, as so for the 99.9% of the time I can’t receive them I will have 11 extra seemingly dead stations there permanently.

But I can always to a full rescan or manual scan on 8D or 10B to get them back if I suspect there’s some good tropo about from Canberra.

Increasing the power to 5kw or preferably 20kw will help too.


Yes, so where on the coverage fringe did reception suffer due to mush zone from the tropo?

The commercials won’t go to ERP of 5kW, they’re waiting for the 20kW determination before acquiring the TX. Stick with the old clunker for another year.


I have generated some coverage maps to answer the above question in relation to where the mush zones would be for the Canberra and Sydney 9C Dab+ services in non tropo conditions. The Sydney 9C map has been generated at 50KW omnidirectional, I left out the 12.5KW restrictions for simplicity. The Canberra coverage maps are, 5KW omni and the proposed 20KW omni services from Black Mountain. The green coverage is 66db Suburban coverage, and the yellow is 42db and above coverage, the lowest possible signal that would be just receivable with dropouts. Perfect to show the mush zones.

At 5KW from Canberra the mush zones would fall around Towrang, and elevated areas in this area, possibly the southern facing lookouts on the Gib at Bowral.

At 20KW from Canberra the mush zones would be pushed further north to Suttons Forest along the Hume Motorway, and in and around Robertson on the Illawarra escarpment. Interference would further increase at the Gib. These areas are where Canberra commercial fm is receivable at present.

As we know with tropo the mush zone for 9C Syd / CBR could extend to Newcastle with intense tropo like what was received recently.


The maps above are generally pretty accurate coverage representations of the current DAB serivces. I received the Canberra DAB service until the other side of Collector today with the Sydney stations coming in around Moss Vale and Went dead after the big hill past Ourimbah


The commercial digital radio joint venture companies in Canberra, Hobart and Darwin have lodged their transmitter access undertakings with the ACCC. The undertakings are identical and were submitted together.

Presumably the ACCC has to approve these before the services can commence?




2CH Sydney now FINALLY has Song Info on DAB!


My pocket digital broke. Was looking at cheap one on ebay, given my more expensive dont really last either.

Anyone bought the above one?