Digital radio finally switched on in Sydney

After a delay of a week or so due to the heavy rain, digital radio has finally been switched on in Sydney.

Commercial radio stations in Sydney 2GB, 2CH, 2UE, 2DAY, TRIPLE M, 2KY, WS-FM, MIX 106.5, 2SM, NOVA, VEGA Radar, Pink Radio, Koffee and NovaNation began broadcasting DAB+ digital radio services today, joining stations in Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne and Brisbane completing the five state metropolitan switch on and taking the total number of digital radio services on air in Australia to 44.

In the first few weeks of the DAB+ digital radio broadcasts in Sydney stations will be broadcasting at lower power while technical aspects of the broadcasts are finalised; then broadcasts will go into variable power mode while any interference is identified, assessed and remediated, as required by the Australian Media and Communication Authority.

Joan Warner, chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, the industry body that has driven the move to digital radio on behalf of the commercial and public broadcasters, said “In the first few weeks in the other switch on cities we broadcast in interference test mode – lower power at night and higher during the day – without any major issues. Following this phase we added high power over the weekends and then, in Perth, Adelaide, Brisbane and Melbourne have moved onto full power at all times. However, Sydney’s unique topography will mean we will remain in interference at low power for a little longer than in other states so any interruption to service is not a cause for alarm – but simply part of the technical aspects of the switch-on,” said Ms Warner.

Further reading

Digital radio terminology: radiotext and UPnP – digital radio will see some new terms thrown our way, such as radiotext (or dynamic label segment) and UPnP – we look at what these terms mean.

Digital radio review round-up – 12 of Australia’s first – Digital radio begins broadcast in Australia in May… and GadgetGuy has gathered 12 of the first digital radios to go on sale.

Digital radio vs AM and FM radio – Digital radio is touted as being not only new, but demonstrably better than AM and FM radio in terms of audio quality and programming flexibility.

Digital radio FAQ – What is digital radio, and when is it launching? Where can I get it? Is is free? What’s different from AM and FM radio? These questions and more answered.