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Are You Digital TV Ready?

Do you know that MediaCorp has been transmitting free-to-air channels in digital format since December 2013 under the DVB-T2 (Digital Video Broadcasting — Second Generation Terrestrial) television standard? As content is increasingly being produced in digital format, Singapore has to move to full digital broadcasting so you can continue to enjoy your favourite programmes from around the world. To help you make sense of the digital transition, here is a simple comparison table!


Digital-ready TV Analogue TV

Cleaner & sharper images (e.g. High Definition or 3D TV)

Fuzzy images on occasion with common problems such as ghosting and snowing

HDTV, for example, has a screen resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and wide screen formats of 16:9 aspect ratio.

Analogue TV only has a screen resolution of up to 720 x 576 pixels and 4:3 aspect ratio.

Multi-language subtitles (if available)

No multi-language subtitles

Better sound experience (e.g. surround sound if you have a home theatre system with surround speakers)

Inferior sound experience

Electronic programme guide to find out more information about programmes

No electronic programme guide

Frees up frequencies for other services such as mobile, broadband, potential TV channels and services, since it takes up fewer frequencies

Takes up more frequencies that could have been better utilised by the government for other services

TVs bought after May 2013 are digital-ready

TVs bought before May 2013 are not digital-ready. To find out more about compatible models that support DVB-T2 channels in stereo or surround sound when connected to a home theatre system, go here.

Digital-ready TVs require an indoor UHF antenna. The HDB rooftop master antenna television (MATV) system was designed to receive analogue signals and thus unable to receive digital TV signals. For other building types, refer to this website for more information.

TVs that are not digital-ready need additional equipment: DVB-T2 set-top box, 75-ohm coaxial cable, a HDMI cable and an indoor UHF antenna

Digital-ready TVs can still receive MediaCorp TV channels when analogue TV signals are switched off.

TVs that are not digital-ready without the right equipment will not be able to receive MediaCorp TV channels when analogue TV signals are switched off or if you’re not a pay TV subscriber.

MediaCorp is currently broadcasting all 7 channels in digital, but only 4 (Channel 5, Channel 8, Suria and Vasantham) are in High Definition. The remaining three channels (Channel NewsAsia, Channel U and okto) will move to HD by 2016.

You can still receive analogue TV signals as they are still being broadcast alongside the digital TV signals. The switch-over will take place progressively from December 2013 to 2016.


To find out if your estate is ready to receive digital TV signals, check the MediaCorp website for the roll-out map. Buying a new television? Then you should look out for the following labels:

DVB-T2-Stereo-the-label    DVB-T2-Surround-the-label

For people who need financial assistance to make a smooth transition to digital TV from analogue TV, there is good news! MDA has a Assistance Scheme for low-income households so head on there to find out how to apply for the scheme.

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