What will happen on Digital 1 when 3 stations leave?
personBy J Peter Wilson
access_timePosted 29 March 2016, 6.32am edt
Currently there are three stations broadcasting on Digital 1 - Absolute 80s Old (64 kbps), Premier Old (48 kbps) & zPlanet Rock (64 kbps) - in addition UCB 1 has dropped its bitrate from 64 kbps to 48 kbps.
According to my calculations that will leave a 'spare' 176 kbps, if UCB 1 returns to its previous 64 kbps, when the three stations finalise their move to the SDL National multiplex.
So do we have any thoughts on what will happen after 4 April (2016-04-04) on Digital 1? In addition what will happen on local multiplexes as extra capacity appears on some of them as heat radio & Kisstory finalise their moves to SDL National?
Okay, I will probably get shot down in flames for writing this, why not increase the Classic FM bandwidth back to 160kbps or (if allowable) convert it to around 64kbps DAB+? FM output can be used as backup for listeners with old DAB tuners.
Also, an invite to carry an extra service like UCB 3 (Gospel) in DAB+ would be an extension of listeners' choice!
Willie - removal of an old DAB service in favour of a DAB+ service would harm the industry's "50% target", since you'd inevitably be pushing some listeners back to FM. Accordingly, and particularly for a station Classic FM's size, this won't happen until the 50% target is hit.
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