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UK Freesat and DVBViewer


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Hope non-UK users don't mind - I've been using DVBViewer a while now and have found a few useful things that get it working well with UK Freesat, I thought I'd list some of them here.


1. EPG. DVBViewer will pick up the Freesat EPG which gives you 7 days of information for most channels. You don't, however, need to tune to ITV HD or Brit Shorts to update the EPG. In DVBViewer - Options - EPG add the following transponders and select the EPG type of Freesat (PID 3842). That will let DVBViewer update the EPG while you're watching any of the channels listed by each of the transponders. Takes a bit longer - half an hour or so of watching for a full update although changing channel won't hurt it - but removes the need for manual updates.


10773H - BBC1 London, BBC2 England, BBC Three, BBC Four, Five FTA, CBBC, Cbeebies

10714H - C4, Film4, Film4+1, More4+1

10729v - E4+1, e4, More4, Channel 4 variants

10847v - BBC HD, BBC1 Camb, BBC1 CI

10906V - STV, Ulster, ITV3, ITV3+1

10758V - ITV1 London, ITV2, CITV, ITV4, ITV1 reg var

10788V - BBC1 WM, NW, EY&L, Y&NM, EM, E

10803H - BBC1Wales,BBC2Wales,BBC1Scotland,BBC2Scotland,BBC2NI

10818V - BBC1 W, SE, S, SW, NE&C, Oxford

10832H - ITV4+1 + Reg var

10891H - M&M, ITV2+1, Reg Var


Note - to get quick updating EPG (around 30 seconds for a full update) from the ITV HD transponder, add another entry to the EPG options - 11427 H - but use the standard Freesat EPG option, not the PID 3842 one.


Also, to make sure DVBViewer can decode the EPG you need the files mentioned in this post. Although this link goes to a post about recording service, the download link is still relevant for the DVBViewer.


Don't forget to check the 'receive EPG data' box in the EPG options screen, in DVBViewer and / or recording service, depending on what you use.


For the quick EPG update, you need to tune to ITV HD for around 30 secs to a minute.


ITV HD will not appear automatically in your channel list after a channel scan, you need to manually edit the channel called '10510' and change the Video PID entry to 3401. As it doesn't have a video PID by default, it appears as an audio channel, not a video channel. Or download and import the file in this post. After this you should be able to tune to ITV HD. Usually you'll get a black screen with 'ITV HD - This service is currently unavailable' but it will still update your EPG.


2. Clashes. Minimise clashes by using regional variations that aren't necessarily your own region. For example, BBC1 London is on the same transponder as BBC2 Eng, BBC Three, BBC Four and Five which means DVBViewer can record all of those channels at the same time, even if you only have one satellite tuner. Also BBC1 Channel Islands and BBC1 Cambridge are on the same transponder as BBC HD so you can record both of those at the same time. ITV and Channel 4 have similar arrangements - see list above. Using the Video Recorder plugin helps you find out which channels are on the same transponder as each other too.


3. BBC HD Narrative audio gets detected as the main BBC HD channel on initial scan which means you don't get the AC3 soundtrack and sometimes people talk over the main audio. In the DVBViewer channel editor expand the BBC HD (NAR) entry so you can see BBC HD (eng) under it. Then drag BBC HD (eng) onto BBD HD (NAR) and they'll swap places. Now BBC HD will use the AC3 soundtrack as default.

Edited by uglyned
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Great tips there, thanks!


Here's another tip

4. ITV1 West Country is 704x576 @4-5Mbps, whereas all other ITV1 regions are at 544x576 around 3Mbps. If you're recording films for achiving, this is probably the one you want to use (for stuff which isn't available on DVD, of course :bye: )

Edited by CX23882-19
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Some really useful info, thanks. Here a possible 6th:


BBCi (i.e. press the red button)




Stream-0 = BBCi5

Stream-1 = BBCi1

Stream-2 = BBCi2

Stream-3 = sometimes BBCi3

Stream-4 = BBCi4

Stream-5 = sometimes BBCi3

Stream-6 = Index page


ITV's interactive service is called ITVi Quad




ITVi Quad (eng) = 1

ITVi Quad (ger) = 3

ITVi Quad (fre) = 2

ITVi Quad (dut) = 4


Has anyone got a tip for warning when a rescan in required on any particular frequency, other than discovering that you've just recorded nothing?

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I think the DVBViewer app detects and fixes changes. It definitely did for me with a change to BBC HD a month or two back. Once DVBViewer has saved te changes Recording Service will pick them uip. Problem is that every recording between the channel details changing and DVBViewer running and picking up the changes is lost.


There is a new setting in Recording Service which handles changes to the stream during a recording now too.


Also read the Freesat forum on Digital Spy. There seem to be a couple of people on there who constantly re-scan all transponders then race to see who can post the changes first.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks, I think your last tip might prove to be the most useful for my purposes. I've noticed that there is a "Retune on missing stream" on the hardware tab, which by default is set to 0, this may need to be set to any value above 0 to activate it.


Regarding and further to the original post: I don't know whether the transponders have changed since this posting but 2 of those listed are different on my scan namely 10803H and 10818V which are 10802H and 10817V respectively.


Also I did some further tests after reading the 2nd and 3rd posts and can add to this that BBC1 NI is transmitted using the same bitrate as BBC1 Scotland but is on the same transponder as BBC 1 - 4 (eng) (and Five). ITV Channel Is and UTV both have good bitrates and are on the same transponder as ITV3 and ITV3+1. ITV Yorks W again good bitrate and on the same transponder as ITV+2 (and men&motors). Now all you've got to wonder is is it likely that there's ever going to be something worth watching on both ITV1 and ITV3 at the same time, but you never know, it might happen...one day.


Lastly I tried out the EPG info tip and initially it began to fill in data all over the place, even on transponders that I hadn't tuned to, but after several hours this never gave a complete set of data on any channel. So I'm back to using the XMLTV importer for now, which is fine except bleb still aren't sending radio station data and Radio Times, ironically, never have.

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First thing I'd like to say is this is a great thread with a lot of useful information. So it's now not just me stabbing in the dark with freesat configuration..


As for transponders I think they've been switched around a bit with the loss of Astra 2C and I don't think DVBViewer's transponder list was updated since. Theres always a workaround though, so put this http://www.fastsatfinder.com/bin/T/0282.ini into the transponders folder replacing the old file.


I never realised there were different bitrates on the same channels (one for ofcom perhaps?) and from what I can establish

-No difference between any BBC1 channels

-BBC2: everything except England is ~4.5mbit, England is ~3mbit

-ITV1 I confirm the West Country one as being significantly higher bitrate and it appears a lot sharper. However none of the others appear better.

-CH4 all the same

That's as far as I got with the bitrate comparisions. This was just by flicking across channels, if anyone has a twin tuner of course that's the better way.


That's me done for now, and its back to sitting around waiting for more channels on freesat to never come ;)

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 months later...



I'm adding my problems with receiving BBC/ITV EPG beyond the current day as I feel it fits better than starting a new thread.


I followed all the instructions that uglyned gave and I use both the DVBViewer Pro and recording service (both latest releases).

I receive the EPG for both BBC and ITV but only for the current day until midnight.


That's in DVBViewer.


In recording service I don't see the UK channels at all (2 satellites setup: SAT1 Astra 19,2, SAT2 Astra 28,2) with the only exception of ITV HD that I just added as uglyned suggested.


Any ideas what I may be doing wrong.



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I receive the EPG for both BBC and ITV but only for the current day until midnight.

Check the filter settings in the DVBViewer EPG window (filter button -> all / today / now)

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Shame on me, I found the reason for having the EPG for the day only in DVBViewer, it was the filter!! haha

Now I see the full EPG in DVBViewer.


However the second problem still remains.

UK (BBC, ITV) channels are not listed in the recording service EPG.


Any ideas (no filter I hope ..)



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Is DVBViewer set up to get its EPG from the Recording service?


Also the way DVBViewer and the Recording service deal with the EPG has changed with the latest versions.


Did you download the freesat complete tables from the link to the VDR site?


If you didn't you might need to download the latest beta of the recording service which can handle Freesat EPG without those files.


What's the version number of the recording service you're using?

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sorry about the confusion caused by my first post.

I do get the full EPG for the UK channels now in DVBViewer (filter was set to today 8-)).

I downloaded and installed both freesat table files, and activated DVBViewer to use EPG from recording service.

I do have the latest recording service version ( installed.


However in the Web Interface of the recording service I don't see any UK channel listed in the EPG tab.

It appears as if all channels with EPG on 19,2 are listed but not those on 28,2, with the one exception ITV HD that I added using the ini from your posting.


Any idea why?

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Ah right.


In the Recording Service web client on either the TV Guide or Timeline tab there's a drop down list at the top left of the main pane, directly under the grey 'Timeline' and 'TV Guide' headings. It contains channel groups.


Drop the list down and have a look at the different groups listed in there, see if there's one that looks relevant to UK channels - maybe BSkyB. Select it then see if the UK channels appear.

Edited by uglyned
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Well, none of the UK channels were there with the only exception being ITV HD as I added that one using the ini you attached to this thread.

However I did a rescan of 28,2 and now the channels are there !! Hip Hip Hoorah!!

Still not sure what the problem was, anyway.


So, thanks for helping!

Great app and great mates!

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  • 2 months later...

I've just noticed that sometime between last weekend and this weekend ITV1 West Country bitrate has dropped to below 4MBit/s. Seems to average about 3.5 :radscorpion:


However I've now noticed that my local ITV1 region (Anglia North as listed on http://www.lyngsat.com/28east.html) is now running @ 704x576 and is averaging around the 4MBit/s mark (was 544x576 and below 3MBit/s previously) and is certainly better PQ than ITV1 West Country. No idea when this changed, haven't watched it for ages. It's only when a weekly recording on ITV1 West Country was two thirds the normal size I started to investigate.

Edited by Rob100
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I noticed the same thing. Apparently ITV have replaced their encoders with newer, more efficient models, which has allowed them to bump the resolution up. Not all regions are changed - ITV1 E Yorkshire & Lincolnshire (from Lincoln to Hull) is still 544x576, so I'm using ITV1 London.


Other good news - ITV2, ITV3 and ITV4 are all at 704x576 and look amazing, although ITV4 seems to be getting more than its fair share of available bandwidth at 5Mbps+.


I can't say I'm too bothered about losing the high quality West Country stream - it always suffered from intermittent glitches even when no errors were reported by DVBViewer. Very high bitrates though - some of the films were better quality than what you get on DVDs! Shame that it's only because of their duty to provide a minimum standard for the analogue transmitter it was serving during DSO, and now that's done, they're allowed to send out crappy over-compressed digital streams.

Edited by CX23882-19
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  • 3 weeks later...

. . . and a note about BBC Scotland having 'better' quality. They certainly have higher bitrates - about twice those of the English regions - but this seems to be mostly due to the use of a near constant bit rate stream. The other regions have a far more variable bit rate with I suspect a more efficient encoding. Anyways - I have gone back to recording London and I can't see any obvious loss of quality and I obviously get nearly twice as much programme material in the same space!


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Freesat users remember that the new ITV1 HD full time simulcast channel starts at 6am tomorrow (Friday April 2nd).


So no more need for manual import of old part time ITV HD channel, ITV1HD should show up in a normal scan.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Hi I have not used DVBViewer befor and have just set it up, I downloaded the latest full version and have set up some frequencies for getting Freesat EPG, but I only get Now and Then listings, I have tried going onto ITV HD and waiting, but my listings are still only Now and Then. Could somebody please let me know how to set DVBViewer up correctly to get Freesat and Sky EPG working.. Thanks Jim...

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Support for FreeSAT EPG on Astra 28.

FreeSAT EPG is handled like MHW EPG. So you have to activate it in the options and put the correct frequency (11428 h) into the options list.

Additionally you need the "Complete Tables" file from http://www.rst38.org.uk/vdr/ .

The files freesat.t1 and freesat.t2 must be extracted into the DVBViewer program folder.

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Thanks TJod, I have done that but not working at the moment, I have now downloaded the netstream plugin and enabled it, I gave the IP address of my PC and I seem to be getting some listings now, but don't get any for BBC Three or BBC Four there may be others as well, any idea why I dont get listings for these channels. I want to setup a TV PC that will record from a mixtures of free channels from freesat and Sky. Also do I need to get the recording services addon so that I can schedule recordings and series link stuff...


Thanks Jim...

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It's not exactly the same but have a look at the screenshot here.


This screenshot is from the Recording Service - if you're only using DVBViewer you need to find the corresponding settings in DVBViewer options - EPG.


The bottom entry - the Freesat one - is the only one that's relevant, the rest don't need to be there.



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Thanks Uglyned, my EPG is setup like that thanks, I have now also installed recording service and seems to be working ok with DVBViewer ok, but I still dont get any listings for BBC THREE or BBC FOUR, I take it I should get listings for these as these are supposed to be part of FreeSat? anybody got any idea why I dont get listings for these channels, there could be other channels that are not getting listings, but I have noticed it on these 2 for sure...

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Could anybody tell me how to check all the EPG data is comming in ok, How do I remove the listings I already have so that when I test for new listings I know its updating all of them, then is there an easy way of testing getting EPG data, from what I can tell I just need to go onto channel ITV HD or BBC HD and the EPG should fully loaded within 30 mins... for all channels etc.. Also is there anyway of getting listings for all the sky free channels or should that be updated with the FreeSat (11427 H) setting?


Thanks Jim..

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Mr Jolly
I still dont get any listings for BBC THREE or BBC FOUR


I am pretty sure those two channels share bandwidth with CBBC and CBeebies. Depending on what time of day you tuned you will get one pair or the other. I did not figure out how to get both working and as I have no intention of watching or recording from CBBC/CBeebies I performed a tune in the evening when BBC 3/4 were transmitting.

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  • 1 month later...

I’ve spent a fair bit of time going through the full list of FTA channels and run a few tests. Here are my findings:

If you want listings on both BBC3, BBC4 and CBBC, CBeebies then use the following tunings:



Stream ID-------2045----2045----2045----2045

Audio PID-------5201----5301----5201----5301

Video PID-------5200----5300----5200----5300

PMT PID----------266-----265-----262-----261

PCR PID---------5200----5300----5200----5200

Teletext PID----5203----5303----5203----5203

Service PID-----6319----6316----6317----6318

Note: the respective audio & video are the same but the PMT and Service IDs are different.


ITV1 Border new Service PID 1015, Venus TV new Service PID 51344.

Edited by steven627
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Receiving EPG data: There is no one complete method of populating EPG data. It is possible to get more or less everything by a combination of methods. I have included a link to an XLS file which lists what data can be obtained via what method. The easiest comes from uglyned’s original post, the tip about adding 11427H to MHW, in fact that is all you need for MHW settings, but remember you’ll also need the Freesat files mentioned in this post. Set up an audio and video less tuning and a shortcut to access it via task manager and it will auto update whenever you like. Takes about 30 seconds for a full update. The stations that aren’t covered by this can be imported using DJBlu’s app. Some tips here: delete the XML files created if you make any changes to the channel listing. Set only those channels that you want to import as External EPG and remove DVB & MHW options otherwise you can end up with messy overlaps where the data conflicts, removing persistent data option may cure this but I’ve not got around to testing this yet. Do this import first, again using a short-cut to tune to the import channel allows for automation, then run the MHW update. Finally, having used XMLTV importer for so long I’m not completely cured of it yet, I found that the data supplied by Radio Times to be far superior, so for the primary channels I still use this data. Which means I have to switch the external option off and on to avoid getting the data from an OpenEPGtoDVB import, although this is easy enough to do at a group level by grouping all the relevant channels together. However, I’ve not yet worked out how this may be automated. I find RT data to be particularly better regarding films, which it clearly highlights as such, and rates using a star system which can save a lot of time in aiding your viewing choice. It also adds an ® against a listing to indicate it’s a repeat. I usually delete the old epg.dat file before beginning to load new data as again this ensures no overlap, if you do this it’s a good idea to start DVBViewer and stop it again to create a blank epg.dat file and OpenEPGtoDVB will crash if there is no epg.dat file. Alternatively simply create a blank epg.dat file then re-name it and then copy this file to epg.dat to create a clean starting point. Note to jim_b: this is how you test that you are receiving the data you want.


I have included links to a number of useful resources including my channel.dat file which I have cleaned of any superfluous channels and pre-set to load EPG data as just described, this can be loaded into your system by copying it into the C:\Documents and Settings\YourDIR\Application Data\CMUV\ folder. Also an almost complete set of channel logos, which go in the folder C:\Program Files\DVBViewer\Images\Logos, all the old ones can be removed.


DVBViewer Resources.rar



My findings regarding regional variations of transmission bitrates etc.: Here it should be noted that simply having a large file or a high bitrate does not guarantee the best end result, if the bitrate varies little then while the result may appear good the recording size will be larger than necessary. Better to have a wide range which will keep the bitrate down when it’s not needed but gives enough headroom for when it is. I found that ITV1 London was clearly better as it not only had the highest bitrate it also had the highest range and was the only one to broadcast in 720x576, all the rest being 704x576. Of the rest Border seemed to be the runner up while Meridian S seemed the worst. Most of the other channels that had multiple tunings offered little difference between them E4 was slightly better that e4 but all the rest were pretty much identical. ITV HD now offers 7 variations of tuning and these are 3 @1440x1088 with AC3 audio and 4 @1920x1088 with Stereo MPEG audio. These last 4 are regional variations for Granada and STV (twice).


Finally ITV1 Central East & Central South seem to have been dropped, as has Premier Radio

Edited by steven627
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  • 2 months later...

MarkusK's logo packs work very well with DVBViewer and Freesat - I'd recommend them.


I think the one linked above originates from MediaPortal and might look nice on that application, but MarkusK's are a little more 3d and shiny.


DVBViewer logopacks

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  • 4 weeks later...

Whoopee-do the Beeb, in their infinite wisdom, have re-configured some of their channel settings. BBC4 is no longer on 10773H, it is now on 10802H as of 18/10/2010. Changes will also affect some regional channels; Wales 1 & 2, Northern Ireland 1 & 2 and probably a few others. Here is an updated downloadable channels.dat: channels.rar.

A work around for those who used to enjoy being able to record 1, 2, and 4 on one card is that you can use 1 SE or Scotland and 2 Scotland which are also on 10802H.

The new settings for BBC4 and CBeebies are:




Stream ID-------2047----2047

Audio PID-------5601----5601

Video PID-------5600----5600

PMT PID---------266-----267

PCR PID---------5600----5600

Teletext PID----5603----5603

Service PID-----6416----6418


For more info about changes go to BBC Satellite Frequencies


I've also been thinking about suppling a link to a regularly updated epg.dat file, created as described in my previous post, but it's a lot of work if no one is interested so could a few of you respond if you like this idea. The rar'd file would be about 2.5 Mb for a weeks worth of data.

Edited by steven627
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My EPG is automatically updated from the freesat transponders, I've notice that the listings from Sunday (when BST end) are ahead by an hour of there actual transmission time, don't where it'll the data that's wrong or what

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EPG times are broadcasted as UTC and DVBViewer adds the current local time offset (as provided by Windows) to all of them, which means, the Sunday EPG times are displayed with today's time offset. It will change on Sunday.

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