proscott, on Apr 25 2011, 06:28 AM, said:
Just looked at my old mans digital radio it now says ?switch digital, but it is 'unavailable' when i try to listen.
That would be the radio retaining an old listing. Listings change and DAB+ radios do not always delete the old listings without a full rescan. The same can happen with digital TVs.
Brisbane's subscriber supported classical music station, 4MBS (103.7MHz FM), is currently testing on DAB+ (204.64MHz) under the name Test MBS. This morning it's a relay of the usual 4MBS main program but with prominent sizzling and hiss, so I'm guessing the temporary audio feed for the testing might be an FM radio with an indoor antenna. I'm sure things will improve.
The intention ( http://4mbs.com.au/digital
) is to carry a different program for the permanent service:
MBS Light service to be available later this year will provide lighter music (light classics, jazz etc) and some spoken word programming.
The intended bitrate for the new service is moderate, 64kbps (nominal), which may possibly be adequate for the intended purpose of casual listening to light classics. DAB+ bitrate is a scarce resource. Even the ABC uses only 80kbps (nominal) for its classical music station, giving an elegant but bland sound, in my experience.
If DAB+ is still around 10 years from now, Australia would I think require additional spectrum space so that classical music stations such as 4MBS could broadcast on DAB+ at a quality no less than that possible with FM stations.
Intestingly the 32kbps streaming currently available on the internet for 4MBS sounds surprisingly good for such a low bitrate. I think the key to the success is that the sampling (for the Windows Media Audio 9.2 codec) is at only 22050Hz. This results in loss of all audio above about 10kHz. That is a good compromise in my view: discard the top octave of audio altogether, but reproduce other octaves with better quality. It's still well short of FM radio quality, but better than some other radio streaming on the net.