All change for Sony Movies, 4Music and 4seven on Freeview, while some struggle to get any signal and others mourn the loss of Now 70s: your Freeview questions answered:
What’s happening to Sony Movies on Freeview?
In April, Sony Movies moved to a new multiplex. Until now, it has been broadcast on both old and new frequencies, providing a useful transition time given it’s not been possible to easily assist those having retuning issues.
The old copy of the channel is to be removed on 2nd June. Anyone still accessing Sony Movies via the old frequency will see a pop-up message advising them to retune. Viewers who don’t retune will lose the channel.
Confusingly, there’s been an issue with the Electronic Programme Guide (EPG) attached to Sony Movies. The old copy that’s being removed and that carries a pop-up warning message has, at the time of publication, got full listings for the next seven days, whereas the new version of the channel has ‘please rescan now’ in place of listings from 2nd June. It should be the other way around. If you use the programme guide to record anything from Sony Movies, you should hold off until next week until it’s sorted.
What’s happening to 4Music and 4seven on Freeview?
Both channels have recently changed multiplex and have been broadcasting on both old and new frequencies for a transitional period.
Channel 4 was previously advising viewers that this dual transmission would end on 27th May. This has now been delayed until 2nd June, taking place at the same time as the Sony Movies changes.
Viewers still accessing the channels via the old frequency will see a pop-up message warning of the change. Viewers who don’t retune will lose the channels during the course of 2nd June 2020.
What’s happening to Together TV on Freeview channel 88?
The channel was operating on reduced hours while all the other channel changes were taking place, as there wasn’t enough capacity for all services to broadcast at the same time.
On-screen messages and Electronic Programme Guide details previously advised viewers that normal service would be restored on 2nd June, however this was brought forward a week to 26th May.
This is after Now 70s left Freeview on 26th May, freeing up bandwidth for Together to resume.
What happened to Now 70s?
The channel’s operator announced ahead of the last bank holiday weekend that Now 70s would be removed from Freeview, advising that it was viewer’s “last chance” to watch Now 70s as their three month “lockdown treat” was coming to an end.
To be clear, when Now 70s first appeared on Freeview in February, no-one was talking about lockdowns, let alone lockdown treats. In the meantime, the channel’s programme guide now says it’s “taking a break” from Freeview.
Now 70s is still available on Sky and Virgin. A number of readers have asked about Freesat: Now 70s and indeed Now 80s or 90s are not part of Freesat’s current channel line-up.
What’s with the poor Freeview signal?
Viewers in Eastern England and Scotland, as well as coastal parts in the rest of the UK, have been experiencing issues with TV reception. This is due to high pressure and associated atmospheric conditions and is not related to any transmitter work.
This results in pixellation, picture and sound glitches or even loss of service. You are not advised to retune, as services should return as weather conditions change.
But if you frequently experience a loss of service, it may be prudent to have your aerial set up checked out.
TV frequencies in parts of the UK have changed since digital switchover, so older aerials may not provide optimal performance on the new frequencies. It’s also worth noting that in some parts of Eastern England, new transmitter sites have been set up in recent years to ensure a more robust signal, while others have been upgraded to carry more channels, meaning some viewers may now receive a better signal from a different transmitter site. A local aerial specialist will be able to assist.
What happened to CCXTV on Saturday evening?
A technical fault during the broadcast of Ricky Tomlinson film Derek on Saturday 30th May sent programmes off-air for a while, for which CCXTV has apologised. The replacement documentary about James Dean overran CCXTV’s Freeview broadcast slot, meaning it was abruptly cut off at 21:59. CCXTV is to reshow Derek next Saturday evening.
- Sadly the team at RXTV haven’t got the capacity to answer all individual reception queries. If you have a problem with Freeview, go to www.freeview.co.uk/help in the first instance. If you have a persistant reception problem, contact a local aerial specialist for advice.
- Many problems turn out to be at the receiver’s end rather than transmitter/broadcaster end: the Radio and TV investigation service has a number of useful troubleshooting guides, including a transmitter checker www.radioandtvhelp.co.uk