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Digital radio unpossible in Canberra

By Holden Caulfield 25 August 2009 27

I’m not sure how many Canberrans care about radio, but I quite enjoy listening to the wireless. This is especially the case during the footy and cricket seasons where a bloke can go about his business in the shed with just the dulcit tones of his favourite sportscaster for company.

So, the advent of digital radio has sparked my interest. Having the freedom to choose which games of football that I can listen to, for example, is cause for great excitement.

Less exciting is the fact that current legislation means it is impossible for Canberra to receive digital radio. Yes, that’s right, by law, only Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney and Perth are currently able to receive digital radio.

Recent contact with ABC 666 Canberra suggests that local testing could begin before the end of this year, although this is yet to gain sign off.

In the meantime their advice, and that of the digital radio website, is to write a letter to your local Federal MP. If you can be bothered, I urge you to take your pick from Bob McMullan (northside, roughly speaking) and Annette Ellis (southside) and get writing.

What’s Your opinion?


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Digital radio unpossible in Canberra
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Danman 12:25 pm 27 Aug 09

Trevar – Father Bob and John Saffran on Triple J is my fave podcast.
Just hit up the ABC website and start downloading.

Overheard 12:02 pm 27 Aug 09

georgesgenitals said :

I used to really enjoy radio, but these days can’t find a station in Canberra that plays what I like. Digital radio would hopefully open up some new options.

I know what you mean. When I first got broadband, I used to come in late on a Friday night and logon to a community station in Boston, Mass. and it was consistently good stuff (to my ear, anyway).

Art 7:51 pm 26 Aug 09

p1 said :

Maybe if they turned of analogue TV, it would free up some funding to speed up the process?

When that happens, I bet they’ll sell of the unused spectrum like in the US for a 4G network.

AG Canberra 5:19 pm 26 Aug 09

I understand cars will start having tri band (am/fm/digi) from 2011

But some of the biggest issues in regional areas are to do with emergency broadcasting. At the moment almost everyone has access to an am radio. once we phase in digi getting everyone over to it and ensuring everyone has access will be the hard part.

James-T-Kirk 2:38 pm 26 Aug 09

Enginerd said :

Digital radio maybe in Canberra next year as part of a regional rollout trial. Currently we are up against Darwin, Hobart and Townsville. If this doesn’t happen Canberra is in the 100 regions scheduled to get digital radio by 2011/12.

I enjoyed the ‘up against’ line….. Is this a competition?

Surely, it is up to the broadcasters (who are private companies) paying for the new infrastructure to allow the new services.

Or is the govmit paying the capital cost of the new hardware……

I remember the stereo AM rollout in the mid 80’s – I used to listen to 1206 AM to go to sleep (in the days when you had to drive to the top of Mt Ainslie to hear the Sydney FM stations). I was woken up many a time with a 1Khz test tone being broadcast at about 3am. Yep – this must the the bush capital…

Ceej1973 1:58 pm 26 Aug 09

Don’t bother about Senator Ellis. She has been posted OS for a while. See earlier article on her posting!

Gungahlin Al 1:37 pm 26 Aug 09

Overheard said :

Personally, I’d like to have it here. I’d like to get Radio National and 666 in FM quality as I can at the coast (RN and ABC South East). And yes, back when I had a shed and a garden, pottering and listening to football and Newsradio all weekend were great.

+1
So many devices now can’t receive AM. Why do outlying areas get their ABC on FM but capitals stay stuck on AM?

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