Germany tests HDTV on DVB-T2

Jörn Krieger | 26-09-2012

Bayerischer Rundfunk (BR), the Bavarian affiliate of German public broadcast network ARD, has initiated a test run providing high-definition television on digital terrestrial (DTT) frequencies in Munich and surroundings using the new DVB-T2 transmission standard.

The DVB-T2 test package contains three channels: Das Erste HD as well as Das Erste and Bayerisches Fernsehen in standard-definition.

In the trial, the head-end R&S AVHE100 manufactured by German electronics company Rohde & Schwarz is employed which the technicians from Rohde & Schwarz, BR and the public broadcasters' broadcast technology unit ARGE RBT have integrated into the existing infrastructure.

According to Rohde & Schwarz, with the R&S AVHE100 it has managed to considerably reduce the time delay in the signal distribution within the head-end. This means, for example, that viewers can during football live games see the goals earlier than viewers watching TV channels which are encoded using a different manufacturer's head-end.

Germany has made no decision yet on a possible DVB-T2 deployment. The successor of the currently used DVB-T standard enables more channels and HDTV services on terrestrial airwaves, but viewers need new reception devices.

ARD would generally be open towards a transition to DVB-T2 and the commercial broadcasters would also consider this move, but only under the condition that it would lead to cost savings.