01543 439 095

Communal Aerial Installation in Cannock

communal aerial installations cannockAt The Aerial Doctor we’ve been fitting and maintaining communal TV systems for in excess of 20 years. Of course in the past things were much simpler than they are these days, there were only 3 analogue TV stations, there was no satellite and the Beatles were at number 1 with Hey Jude! Communal TV systems have evolved substantially ever since then in both how they work but additionally with regard to what’s actually accessible to the viewers and we can offer a full and professional communal aerial installation in Cannock.

IRS Systems

Although there are some exclusions, for instance in hotel systems, almost all communal properties nowadays collect their TV services using Integrated Reception Systems (IRS). IRS systems vary in their intricacy but generally speaking they consist of a TV, FM and DAB aerial as well as a satellite dish. The signals are mixed and then distributed to numerous individual dwellings to deliver each resident with a variety of services.

This can be done by constructing aerials and dish(es) on the roof and running cabling from them to a position in the premises where we can install the distribution equipment which is collectively termed the “headend”. Since the headend is composed of electronic equipment this is usually positioned inside in a tank room, riser or cellar but it can also be fitted outside in a weatherproof cabinet.

The feeds from the antennae are amplified and filtered at the headend to ensure they’re robust enough to provide for the amount of dwellings within the building. They are then linked to distribution units or “multiswitches” which combine the signals together to ensure that TV, FM, DAB and satellite can all be fed down a solitary cable. Two twin screened CAI benchmarked coaxial cables are then run from the multiswitch to the TV point(s) in every dwelling and terminated in a Quad outlet plate which de-combines the signals for the resident to connect their equipment to.


Additional Satellites

The system outlined above is an example of a 5 wire IRS which provides digital terrestrial TV (Freeview), FM, digital radio (DAB) and Sky. However there is also a rising demand for satellites aside from Sky to be integrated such as Hotbird, Astra, Arabsat and Nilesat. Each extra satellite necessitates an extra dish to be installed, four extra cables to be run to the headend, extra amplification equipment and a different sort of multiswitch. So an IRS system with two satellites is called a 9 wire, 3 satellites being a 13 wire and 4 as a 17 wire system. With the inclusion of added satellites it is recommended to run additional cables to the TV points. It’s possible to view multiple satellites from a single Quad socket but this means “looping” satellite receivers together which could cause “crashing”.


Fibre Optic IRS


Progressively today fibre optic cabling is being built-into the set up of IRS systems for communal aerial installation in Cannock. Using Fibre within the TV sector is a relatively recent development although it has been used in the telecoms industry since the 1980s. In 1997 the first fibre telephone cable of it’s kind which was called FLAG (fibre-optic around the globe) was laid on the sea bed between London and Tokyo.

There are plenty of advantages of Fibre over traditional copper coax. Fibre can hold more information over much larger ranges than copper. It is lighter weight and the cables have a far smaller diameter. In addition because glass doesn’t conduct electricity there’s no current flow so there are no earthing requirements. Fibre IRS systems work largely by employing the same principles as regular copper apart from a number of the components are different and that you can run the cables across distances of up to 10km.