Channel Ten HD: Everything You Need To Know

It's finally happening. Next month, Network Ten will launch Channel 13 on free-to-air television — an all-HD simulcast of its main channel that will be available in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth. Here's what you need to know.

For years, Australia's restrictive broadcasting legislation denied free-to-air television networks the right to show their main channels in high-def. Thankfully, these days are finally ending, with Network Ten among the first to begin the switch to HD.

Unfortunately, not everybody will be getting the new HD channel, and the change also affects the network's existing HD content. Here are the main points you need to be aware of.

What Is Ten HD?

Channel 13 is a free-to-air high definition simulcast of its primary channel. This means you'll be able to watch Channel Ten sporting events in HD, along with popular shows like Gogglebox, Offspring, I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here!, The Project, NCIS , Modern Family and MasterChef Australia. All content will be identical to the main channel, but broadcast in HD.

Who's Getting Ten HD?

The new channel will be available in Australia’s six major metropolitan markets of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and the Gold Coast.

Which HD Resolution Does It Use?

Ten HD will be broadcast in 1080i using the 16:9 widescreen ratio. Videophiles will tell you that 1080i is visually inferior to 1080p (AKA "Full" HD.) While they are technically correct, it's unlikely that the average viewer will be able to tell the difference — especially if your TV screen is 60 inches or under.

What Technology Do I Need?

To receive the channel, you'll need a HD TV with an MPEG 4 decoder. (The network uses MPEG 4 compression to deliver high-def content within the existing broadcast spectrum.) According to Ten, approximately 90 per cent of HD TV sets in Australia are MPEG 4 compatible.

How Do I Set Up Ten HD?

If you have a TV with an auto-tuner, you should receive a prompt to add the new channel on or around March 2. If you don't receive a prompt, you may need to re-tune your TV manually. If you run into problems, you can contact Channel Ten on the following toll-free help line: 1800 783 117.

What About Regional Viewers?

The availability of Channel 13 in regional Australia will be dependent on Ten's partner Southern Cross Media. Currently, Southern Cross has no concrete plans to launch the new channel in the markets it covers. Tch. (It will, however, be available in regions where both markets overlap — so it's worth re-tuning your TV just in case.)

What Will Happen To Ten ONE?

From 2 March, Ten's former HD channel will be downgraded to standard definition. This means that many sports previously broadcast in HD — including MotoGP, Formula One, Rugby Union and Netball — will only be available in standard-def. The reason for this is that the network does not have the spectrum capacity to keep ONE in HD along with the new channel. Sucks to be a netball fan.

When Does Ten HD Launch?

Channel 13 will launch on 2 March; a little over a week from now. The launch coincides with Ten's coverage of the Clipsal 500 V8 Supercar race which will be screened on Channel 13 in HD.


While it's a shame to see channel One get bumped down from HD, we're still big fans of this development. Australia's main TV channels have been languishing in standard definition for a stupidly long time. It was seriously getting ridiculous.

Whether it will be enough to bring fed-up viewers back into the free-to-air fold remains to be seen. Nevertheless, watching Ten's premium sporting events in crystal-clear detail is nothing to be sniffed at.

Do you still watch free-to-air TV? Would a switch to high-definition entice you to watch more? Share your thoughts and opinions in the comments.


Comments

    So what happens to the regional HD channel if it's getting dropped to standard def in the capitals, will it still be HD? I'll never understand why they broadcast movies in standard def whilst there was nothing but rubbish showing on the high def channel.

    *Slowly raises middle finger at 10 regional while winding invisible crank with other hand.

    I always thought it was stupid when you're watching some sort of live TV event in HD on One, and then you get that god awful message "to continue watching switch to Ten" so you could watch the final pivotal moments in resolution that looked like I'd rubbed sand in my eye.

    Last edited 23/02/16 10:29 am

    with Network Ten the first to begin the switch to HD.

    I've already got 9HD on my TV, so I'm not sure this statement is true... Unless it came from their marketing department?

      Except the actual quote from the article is this:

      Thankfully, these days are finally ending, with Network Ten among the first to begin the switch to HD.

        Except it wasn't that when I posted. See how it was initially posted on the 23rd, and I initially posted on the 23rd? It's been edited/corrected since then.

        Last edited 25/02/16 8:25 am

    Still waiting for 9HD in Canberra too...

    The regional TV stations (which aren't really regional - they are national B grade broadcasters) have been conducting a PR campaign to save them from the ravages of competition for the last few months.

    I'd rather see them go bust now. Their regional news services are pathetic, they produce zero content, and their service is pathetic.

    HD was all they had left to offer - and that's not happening.

    What a bone head move to switch One back to SD! Free to air stations in Australia need to have a hard look at themselves.

      There's not enough HD to go around...
      Pixel rationing is the only way to go.

        I heard there was some of that HD up in Californee way. Yup.

          the problem is we can't use american pixels in australia - their's are more progressive...

      They need to have a hard look at themselves because they're upgrading their primary channel to HD? Ok then...

      I remember people bitched when Ten HD disappeared first in 2008, and One was launched as a replacement. And now people are bitching because Ten HD is returning and One is moving to SD...

      Can't please them all.

    Nope, doesn't say "paid content" anywhere...

    Filling in the blanks here regarding sports - this is from Ten's press release.

    TEN HD on Channel 13 will broadcast TEN’s premium sporting events in vivid detail, starting with the eagerly anticipated first leg of the 2016 V8 Supercars calendar – the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide – from Friday 4 March to Sunday 6 March and the 2016 Formula 1® Rolex Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne from Friday 18 March to Sunday 20 March.

    So at least metro viewers will be able to get more sports in HD. Shame they've sold off most of the F1 races.

    Screwed us Formula 1 fans even more than it did before! Fuck Foxtel and Fuck 10.

    How is it that other countries can run dozens or even hundreds of HD channels simultaneously, but Australia only has enough bandwidth to run at most, five at a time?

    Is there something about the atmosphere in the southern hemisphere that makes it more resistant to progress?

    Last edited 23/02/16 2:11 pm

      Wasn't this something that was supposed to improve when the analog frequencies were sold off?

      No country has dozens or hundreds of terrestrial TV channels in the same city.

        Auckland does. And it has less people than Perth.

          Auckland has a total of 17 terrestrial channels, of which only 3 are HD. Perth has 26 terrestrial channels, of which 5 are HD

      The answer is MPEG4. Which we're only just starting to use. If we turned off all the MPEG2 channels and started encoding them in MPEG4, there would be plenty of space for more digital TV channels.

      Alternatively, ACMA could allocate more spectrum for the purpose. They were planning to sell off two whole ever-metro multiplexes about fifteen years ago, but it was decided not to, in order that the spectrum could be used for wireless data services. This said, I don't know if they ever actually did that.

    If it turns out like SBS HD only the shows on the original SBS One station continued to use closed captions (hearing impaired I am referring to)~now even that's gone, they turned it in to a cooking channel. Sucks if you're hearing impaired. Most programs on One HD and Gem don't have them either. For that exact reason I left Presto and went to Netflix. In this modern age of technology you would expect closed captions to be a no brainer. Especially on pay TV. Should I jump up and down and scream discrimination? No, because then I would be just another whinger.

    *Case in point~have never missed an episode of Survivor. Had closed captions when it used to be shown on Nine~never again after they moved it to Go...frustrating.

    The legislation that was recently changed allowed them to make their HD channel their primary channel — but that’s not what Ten and Nine have done.

    You will notice that Ten SD is still around. As is Nine SD. We're in the exact same situation we were in the early days of HD, from 2001 through to 2007/8 when multichannel restrictions were lifted and the networks *chose* to end simulcasting to get more advertiser dollars with multiple channels.

    Absolutely zero legislative changes were needed to *finally* return to the days of the HD simulcast, once they’d exhausted their spectrum with second and third multichannels and multiple shopping channels.

    The sole reason we are seeing Ten HD is that Nine HD were “brave” enough to wait for H.264 penetration to get high enough, launch the first “real” MPEG-4/H.264 channel, and cop the complaints from those with MPEG-2 only gear.

    Last edited 23/02/16 6:55 pm

    Im sorry, the HD standard they use is visibly inferior to 1080p full HD. Sporting events in particular show this up with pixelation on screenwhen lots of movement and moving cameras happening.
    The other thing that annoys me is that I use a $2000 pvr/blu-ray player for all my viewing, because it's easier when watching recordings (to avoid ads) and for the sound; my tv has an excellent picture but its speakers really really suck. But because this player is now 6 years old, I won't be able to recieve any of the new HD channels, so I'll have to buy another one. Grrrrrr

      Atleast you wont have to pay $2000 this time i don't know of any pvr that costs that much

    "The reason for this is that the network does not have the spectrum capacity to keep ONE in HD along with the new channel."

    From what I can see, Channel 9 are using more bandwidth to show 9 in SD (using MPEG-2) than 9HD (using H.264)! Assuming 10 take the same approach, it looks to be plenty of capacity for more than one HD channel if they would adopt the right technology......

    WOW now we can watch crap reality TV in HD!!! Thanks TV you are awesome.

    How is Ten amongst the first? Given that 7 and 9 did this some time ago... I would say not.

    Wacko now we can watch the likes of Family Feud on another channel along with the others. What a waste of broadcast. The spectrum for ten could be cleaned up by deleting copy of One on 12. How about putting something worthwhile on your network instead of the rubbish dished up now. Don't worry Foxtel is no better. Ten is the last for MPEG 4 broadcast on commercial networks not the first. How about doing us all a good turn & switch off all channels on 10.

      Not sure what you're on about. In South east S.A. we have these chanels in HD; Win9, 7mate, SBS, One and ABC News 24 in 720P.

    So let me summarise for regional viewers:

    7Mate downgrades from HD to SD
    GEM downgrades from HD to SD
    ONE downgrades from HD to SD
    All the main channels upgrade from SD to HD and put the best programming on the main channel but you can't receive them if you are in a regional area.

    This is a pathetic disaster/joke if you live in a regional area. I think the Minister for Communications needs to step in here and sort this crap out !!!

      What I mean to say is that you can still receive the main channels, just not in HD !!

      Or you can contact the station owner in you area and ask for HD

        Sure that will work

      7mate and One not downgraded Gem downgraded replaced with 9HD Prime and Southern Cross say the logistics and size of their viewing areas preventing the launch of new channels, yet they were able to start racing and shopping channels at same time as metro.....Go figure

    along with popular shows like Gogglebox, Offspring, I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here!, The Project, NCIS , Modern Family and MasterChef Australia.

    There is a depressing sentence.

    So what is the point of UHD? Stations can't even have multiple HD signals so does this mean all the stations will have to combine into one mega station so they can broadcast in UHD? At least there will be no need for a remote, just turn on the tv and watch.

      The stations can have multiple HD signals on their existing multiplexes. They choose not to. They could squeeze two MPEG-2 HD channels on air if they turned off everything else. But they don't do this because they can more more money with more channels. They could broadcast around 5 MPEG-4 HD channels each if they wanted, but that would mean everyone with MPEG-2 only equipment would have nothing to watch.

      The point of UHD is to sell TVs. The manufacturers and retailers knew full well that there was hardly any UHD video content available when they started making and selling them, and there was never any agreement with broadcasters and other content distributors to make such content available en masse.

      Foxtel is able to do UHD, but it's not yet sufficiently in their financial interest to do so. Netflix is doing it a bit, and it's most likely that whoever will be providing UHD TVs with video content in a picture resolution worthy of them will be doing so via broadband and not over-the-air signals.

      It may be that one day h.265 or a similar codec is used to broadcast UHD content over the air, but receiving it would require people to get a whole lot of new equipment.

      TVs and PVRs could be made in such a way that either their decoding can be done in software or their hardware decoder can be easily upgraded.

        So in other words, it's pretty complicated and a case of 'you can't suit everyone' At least the networks are finally jumping on HD, now we just need a broadband network that gives all Australians the opportunity to stream UHD content. Until then, is there such a thing as 1080P OLED Tv's?

    I'm not sure what everyone is going on about... the full HD streams that come over free-to-air are so ridiculously compressed that the artifacts often make viewing intolerable.
    The SD stream may be a worse resolution, but it doesn't need to be compressed so heavily - and so it actually ends up being a lot more pleasant (and consistent) to watch (especially for sporting events).

      Perhaps you're thinking of HD broadcast in MPEG-2 (as it was initially), but the recent cricket on Nine was much more pleasant to watch in HD (MPEG-4) than in SD. Very little artifacting and much clearer.

    The regional networks are lobbying to be allowed to disappear! Or in the case of Win, potentially swallow Network Ten.

    Their news services are hardly pathetic given the populations each bulletin serves. In order for Nine Sydney to provide the same per capita level of news coverage as one of the smaller regional markets , it would have to broadcast Sydney (and near Sydney) related news for over 20 hours a day!

    It wasn't long ago that WIN was running Nine Perth and Adelaide, with all the associated state-based programming this entailed.

    I wish they'd just broadcast everything in HD. I'd imagine the amount of SD only TV's/set top boxes to be relatively small.

    Without prejudice in my view .. The trouble with this complete bullshit HD it's not uniformed in terms min: is HD as in the bandwidth and the bottom dollar and the stupid ads why not have advertising breaks at start so one gets prepared seating and volume and everyone is ready same principle as cinema previews well advertising it sticks in the head of some not some wanking advertising about cars and how people drive these big shit boxes hey look another idiot male mid 30's talking shit and masturbating with his tongue to a script that makes men look stupid and they are always skinny have all there hair talk like private school catholics and act like they are with priest in the car on the wanted list in that they are the after part ferked up and come across as stupid and are all super dads well ever ridden with your parents remember the swear words as parents are all perfect my dad was homer simpson behind the wheel anyhow getting off subject its sexist to men woman are portrayed as smart neat dressed well spoken in ads well yeah 95% are not they are fat loud mouth and opinionated like men so why do we need HD vision for advertising show fat bastard stuffing food in his mouth a dickhead in earth damaging environmental huge SUV and get it over with save money networks SD standard def and now the Show please show if you could in 4k HD 8k might freak out the money people and celebrities would be on half pay and show Australian quality tv shows we have the industry and talent but we sell out to america our product is better we should be selling to the world CHINA billions people wanting entertainment anyhow the crap HD 10 will show will be americian and same script in different forms a killing a terrorist and car crashes and shoot outs and the guy in the sheet did it not the bastard who bank rolls it in real life so yep the USA shows are all the same just put the script in blender and its the same anyhow the other thing is I'm hetro and proud of it do i have to put up with being told that gay people are special they are just the same as anyone else just someone takes it hard i really dont care what your sexuallity is i want good entertainment in 4k HD and piracy well RM well he started piracy so that to further his own empire from his 5% stake of others money his slave of the Yanky dollar and the real people who run this planet anyhow RC family laughes at there pet dog anyhow they torture people with morning tv ads get fat at ad nite time ads and loose weight morning ads to all who are saving the planet or fat food ads for obese guilt driven and ads for funeral insurance or the looser guy depicted in ads is this as good as it gets tv shows with blonde a black person a comedy relief and couldn't care guy with nazi comments making fun of life in general we have to live and be slaves to the banks Hope Channel 10 HD is good or is it standing for Channel 10 Hard Dick useless unless used properly aaaahhh well if you run Molly like Channel 7 its still crap what real story seems like BBC peodo tv some of those guys were engaging with sex with minors but thats okay ..Anyhow color tv right their in my room shocking me out of my brains good re run of bluey would have rated better anyhow hope HD tv gets to 8k one day least buying expensive tv be worth having content to watch hey but some guy on Uranus is laughing at re runs of i love Lucy no intelligent society would want to invade this shit hole called earth may be for gold we have no decent tv in HD oh my god i can feel they are going to run pretty woman at 7 again and Notebook 10 god who the hell runs these tv stations its like THE BOX come back footy please buy better cameras or are they coming after the Olympics they are the oldest crap camera's look at super bowl and look at our game quality viewing HD yeah sure long way to shop for HD 4k camera ..

      OMG what drugs are you on buddy, love the rant I cant believe I read it all...lol

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