Radio and television reception
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

    What is digital terrestrial television?

    Digital terrestrial television is a method of broadcasting television programs to individual recipients – viewers – using terrestrial broadcasting infrastructure. The introduction of digital television results from the need to enhance the efficiency of frequency use and to launch new services, which are not implementable in an analogue technology. To avoid market fragmentation, it was decided that DVB-T digital terrestrial television and its newer version of DVB-T2 will be implemented in Europe.

    DVB-T / DVB-T2 digital terrestrial television introduced across Europe, successively replaced analogue TV, offering, apart from increasing the number of programs, better image and sound quality, as well as adding many soundtracks to the program, surround sound, program guide (EPG). It is also possible to add interactive services and paid services.

    What is multiplex?

    A multiplex is a package of channels broadcast digitally with additional services via one frequency channel. This means that in the band formerly occupied by one analogue TV channel, it is possible to put many digitally broadcast programs. Colloquially, the multiplex is also called a set of frequency channels used to broadcast the same programs in a given area, e.g.  throughout the country. MUX is an abbreviation derived from the English definition of multiplex.

    What is required to watch digital terrestrial television?

    A dedicated decoder / receiver is required to receive digital television. In modern TV sets it is an integral part of the device. In the case of older televisions, it is necessary to purchase an external device – “set top box”. The device is installed between the antenna (antenna system) and the television set. To receive DVB-T / DVB-T2 digital television, the same antennas as for analogue TV are used.

    It is recommended to use multi-element antennas and resign from antenna amplifiers if possible. Room antennas can only be used on sites with high signal strength. The antenna should be directed to the nearest broadcasting facility broadcasting digital television, and then receiver should be programmed in accordance with the user’s manual to receive digital channels.

    When selecting the antennas, pay attention to the antenna operational band and the polarization of the signal. Multiplexes MUX-1, MUX-2 and MUX-3 are broadcast via the UHF band. The MUX-8 multiplex is broadcast in the VHF band.

    How to select a digital TV receiver?

    For the proper reception of digital terrestrial television a TV equipped with a DVB-T tuner (compatible with MPEG-4 / AVC) or a set-top box – an external decoder allowing to receive digital terrestrial television after connecting to the TV is required.

    In year 2022 transmission standard will change to DVB-T2/HEVC.

    It is worth start with checking whether the TV set we have is adapted to the upcoming changes. The parameters of the TV set can be checked in the user manual or on the Internet, e.g. on the manufacturer’s website.

    If you are considering buying a new TV set, it is worth asking the seller whether the TV model you are interested in has the right parameters. Some TV sets in Polish homes are already equipped with an appropriate system.

    However, if your TV set is not adapted to receive the DVB-T2 / HEVC standard, you do not need to buy a new one. You can get a special set-top box that will enable to receive the TV signal in the new standard.

    Selecting new receiver make sure that it support:

    • Standard DVB-T2
    • Video compression HEVC (H.265)
    • Resolution HDTV
    • Audio compression E-AC3 (DolbyDigital Plus)
    • Hybrid television HbbTV, version at least 2.0.1
      (interacive receivers only)

     

    What does the 700MHz band refarming mean?

    Refarming means the necessity to move terrestrial television multiplexes from the 694-790 MHz frequency to the lower range of 470-694 MHz. This is related to the requirement imposed on the European Union countries to release the 700 MHz band for the needs of mobile operators (5G services), as well as in connection with the transition to the DVB-T2 / HEVC transmission standard, announced for 2022. The changes are in line with the ordinance of the President of the Office of Electronic Communications of 17 January 2020 on the frequency management plan for the 470-790 MHz band.

    How to prepare for changes of the transmission standard?

    It is worth start with checking whether the TV set we have is adapted to the upcoming changes. The parameters of the TV set can be checked in the user manual or on the Internet, e.g. on the manufacturer’s website.
    If you are considering buying a new TV set, it is worth asking the seller whether the TV model you are interested in has the right parameters. Some TV sets in Polish homes are already equipped with an appropriate system.
    However, if your TV set is not adapted to receive the DVB-T2 / HEVC standard, you do not need to buy a new one. You can get a special set-top box that will enable to receive the TV signal in the new standard.

    What are channel changes implemented as part of the refarming process about?

    In March and June this year, the frequencies (channels) of signal transmission from facilities in 14 voivodships (Lubuskie, Dolnośląskie, Śląskie, Świętokrzyskie, Małopolskie, Podkarpackie, Pomorskie, Zachodniopomorskie, Warmińsko-Mazurskie, Opolskie, Wielkopolskie, Mazowieckie, Lubelskie) have changed. The next stage of the 700MHz band refarming project is scheduled for March 2022, and the complete release of the 700MHz band is scheduled for 30 June 2022.

    The changes will not require re-alignment of the receiving antennas.

    Changing the transmission frequency will require re-programming of the TV set, unless it finds the channels itself. New sets periodically check for changes and update the channel list so most TV viewers should not notice the change.

    Why the standard of transmission will change in 2022?

    The transmission of terrestrial television signal in the DVB-T / MPEG4 standard has been conducted for 10 years and the standard itself appeared in the world much earlier. The change of the transmission standard planned in Poland in 2022 to the newer and more effective DVB-T2 / HEVC standard will enable the introduction of new television channels to the terrestrial television offer. All channels can be broadcast in HD and some perhaps even in 4K quality.

    The implemented changes are favourable for viewers. After the change of the transmission standard, it will be possible for all channels to be broadcast in much better, HD quality. Moreover, a new, more effective standard will allow broadcasters to add new channels.

    When the standard of transmission change to DVB-T2 / HEVC?

    The signal will be switched in the first half of 2022.

    Where to find more information?

    More technical details and expert advice can be obtained on the discussion forum at forum.emitel.pl
    Current parameters of broadcasting stations can be checked at www.emitel.pl/strefa-klienta/odbior-rtv/sprawdz-parametry-emisji/

    The plan of managing frequencies for the 470–790 MHz band. Ordinance of the President of the Office of Electronic Communications.
    Office for Electronic Communications -> UKE
    National Council of Radio Broadcasting and Television -> KRRiT