History of TV DX in The Netherlands

Gösta Van Linden



Wim Van Hout TV-FM DX home antenna installation, 2012.

INTRODUCTION

The “golden years” of TV DX in our country have been the 1970s and early 1980s. During the first years of the 1970s we had two other DX Clubs in our country, besides the Benelux DX Club. In 1971 the ETJ was founded (Europese Testbeeld Jagers) @ European Test Card Hunters. In 1972 the ETFV was founded (Europese Testbeelden Foto Vereniging) @ European Test Card Photo Club. Both Clubs (TV DX only) at their peak had over 125 active TV Dxers. A lot of our TV DXers have been members of all the three clubs. At the end of the 1970s the number of active TV DXers had been reduced dramatically due to the arrival of cable TV services. In places with cable TV, due to local council regulations, private antennas were not allowed to be mounted externally on the roof.

The Benelux DX Club was founded in November 1961 by a few radio DXers from the Netherlands and Belgium in the building of Radio Nederland Wereldomroep in Hilversum. In 1976 I became a member, and since January 1980!, I'm TV-editor of the BDXC. The BDXC has survived the ETJ and the ETFV.

The ETJ was founded in January by Henk Vasterman (an older radio & TV repairman in the province of Limburg), Peter van der Kramer (schoolfriend) and me. From the start all members used simple “standard” DX aerials, e.g. rotatable Yagis for Band 1, Band 3 and UHF. Later better aerials were used such as Hirschmann and FuBA aerials. In 1972 we obtained a new member, living in Antwerp, Belgium. He also was the owner of a aerial shop. It was possible to get pylones from him at reduced prices (triangular type). Before the arrival of cable TV in Belgium, pylones of 20 meter and higher on the roofs was quite normal there. In our country some DXers outside the cities erected pylones of 25 meters. The last bulletin of the ETJ was published in 1976. By the way, since 1971 Roger Bunney (UK) is one of my correspondents. Also Erhard Schwarz from the former DDR, but he passed away a few years ago.

In 1976 I became TV editor of the ETFV. The last bulletin of the ETFV was published in December 1981. From January 1982 to January 1999 the ETFV has published a monthly newsletter.

In the early 1980s the BDXC have had a few members, living in southern France. We always got interesting photos and information about TV in Africa. They were able to receive African TV quite often. Alain Duchatel had founded the French TV DX club AFATELD together with some other DXers. Rijn and I also have contributed to this club. Unfortunately the AFATELD was no longer active after a few years.

As far as I can remember in West Germany there were no specific TV DX clubs. During the last years of the 1970s Rijn and Henny started a TV DX column in the Radio Magazine, called ADDX Kurier. I also contrubuted to this magazine. Around the start of the 1980s Alexander Wiese in Munich started publishing the TeleAudioVision (TAV) with TV DX information. Rijn, Henny and I have contributed to this magazine. After a few years TAV was replaced by the TELEsatelliet magazine with only satellite information. Today another German DX magazine is still published with analogue and digital radio and TV information, called Reflexion. The first magazine was published also around the begin of the 1980s.

Sometimes other TV DXers also contributed to Roger Bunney's column in Television Magazine such as Ton van Dalen. He has received in the early 1970s a chE2 TV station from Lebanon. From the start of the TeleRadio News (Garry Smith - Keith Hamer) we exchanged news and photos.

Other famous TV DXers were Henny Demming, Rijn Muntjewerff, Ton van Dalen, Ernst Bos, Hans Baard, Han Wolthers (the writer of an aerial handbook), David Mosies, Joop Prosee, Peter de Vries, Gerard Boerema and Wim van Hout (passed away August, 2015). They all have been members of the BDXC. Some of them also have been TV editor. Gerard Boerema and Wim van Hout became members of the BDXC in the late 1960s. Gerard Boerema and David Mosies have produced the famous BDXC log periodic band 1 (40 – 95 MHz.) aerial in 1971. Famous TV DXers outside the BDXC were Henk Vasterman and Ger Vissers.

In 1964 I received the first TV transmitter from Germany. In that year the Lopik UHF transmitter for the 2nd programme was opened. My brother and I have mounted the UHF aerial above the channel E4 aerial on the roof and from a RTV shop we have bought a so called UHF converter. All UHF channels are converted to VHF Band 1. Here the best channel to use was E2. E3 was not usable due to a strong signal spread interference from Lopik-1 on E4.

My parents used a VHF only (E2 – E11) TV, a Philips TX180 from 1958. If Lopik-2 was off the air I sometimes noticed Hochsauerland, Germany, on the same channel (E27). At that time we didn't know what TV DX was...

By the way, at the end of 1964 we also received the pirate TV station “TV Noordzee” by means of an extra indoor aerial. TV Noordzee was located on a platform (REM Isle) in the North Sea, at 5 kilometers from the main land. It was on the air during a few months on channel E11 with 30 kW. ERP. At the end of 1964 the marine and police ended the illegal transmissions... Here is a video about TV Noordzee including the end:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gGMQcGWjE48

I first seriously started TV DX around 1969. The first programme arrived here from Lopik-1 on E4. Due to the high trees around our home we often had ghost pictures during wet weather. And I remember that my dad always got very angry, looking at football with three balls and over 30 players, hi!

I used for the first time a rotator with a home build UHF long Yagi for E21 – E35 for the reception of Goes-1 on E29 without ghost pictures. Lopik-2 on E27 always was perfect. During the summer of 1969 I was turning the aerial from Lopik-2 to Goes-1 via the north and west. Then I noticed on E23 a colour bar pattern with the ID “LWT” and from the same direction also a colour bar pattern without ID on E26, both without sound. I didn't know the origin, but my brother wondered if it was from the UK. So I wrote letters to the ITA and BBC about these receptions. A few days later I got letters from very wondered engineers. I have received the test transmissions of the very new UHF transmitters of Crystal Palace for 625 lines colour TV (opened only two weeks before my reception). In November 1969 the first UHF colour transmitters of the ITA and BBC were officially opened, including Crystal Palace (1000 kW. ERP.) So I was one of the very few persons on the Continent, which received Crystal Palace, England for the first time. That was the start of TV DX here. At the same year I got my first 4 norm TV set, a Philips TX170: 625 lines Europe, 625 lines Belgium, 819 lines Belgium, 819 lines France.

I have added the 405 lines system. So ITA Anglia on channel B11 was almost a daily guest here. By means of an extra R and C in the line oscillator it was possible to receive 405 line signals. Only the width of a 405 line signal was not 100 correct. I used a switch on the TX170, which was formely used for the sound quality. The 625B switch was used for the positive vision. For the sound of other TV systems I used an army receiver, type BC683 (20 - 40 MHz.). It was adapted for 220 Volts and for AM and FM sound. The output of an second TV tuner was connected with the input of the BC 683. See photo "zomer 1971" (Summer 1971). C-kiezer = tuner with the C-Band. = Italian channel C (and R03, R04). @ second DX TV.

Daily receptions without tropo conditions in the early 1970s, Rotterdam (S1 – S5):

E02 BRT-1 Aalter-Ruiselede (625B)
E02 NDR-1 Steinkimmen
E03 RTB-1 Liège Bol d´Air (625B)
E03 BR-1 Kreuzberg / Rhön
E04 NOS-1 Lopik.
E05 NOS-1 Roermond.
E06 NOS-1 Smilde.
E07 NOS-1 Goes
E07 NOS-1 Markelo.
E07 RTL Dudelange / Luxembourg (625B)
E08 RTBF-1 Wavre (625B)
F8A TF-1 Lille-Bouvigny (819F)
E09 WDR-1 Langenberg
E10 BRT-1 Waver (625B)
E11 RTBF-1 Léglise (625B)
E11 WDR-1 Cologne
B11 ITA Anglia Television (405)
E21 ZDF Monschau
E21 ZDF Münster
L21 A2 Lille-Bouvigny (625F)
E24 WDR-1 Aachen
E24 ZDF Lingen
L24 FR-3 Lille-Bouvigny (625F)
E25 BRT-2 Waver
E27 NOS-2 Lopik
L27 TF-1 Lille-Bouvigny (625F)
E28 RTBF-2 Wavre
E29 NOS-1 Goes
E31 NOS-2 Roermond
E32 NOS-2 Goes
E35 ZDF Büderich-Wesel
E37 ZDF Lüdenscheid
E39 NOS-1 Wieringermeer
E41 NDR-1 Lingen
E40 SWR-3 Schnee-Eifel
E42 RTBF-2 Liège Bol d´Air
E43 BRT-1 Egem-Tielt
E44 BRT-1 Genk
E45 NOS-2 Wieringermeer
E46 WDR-1 Kleve
E46 BRT-2 Egem-Tielt
E47 NOS-2 Smilde
E47 BRT-2 Genk
E48 WDR-3 Büderich-Wesel
E50 WDR-3 Monschau
E50 NOS-1 Arnhem
E53 NOS-2 Arnhem
E55 WDR-3 Düsseldorf
E59 NDR-3 Lingen
E60 WDR-3 Lüdenscheid
E61 RTBF-1 Léglise
E62 BRT-2 Schoten

625B = 625 lines Belgian system: positive vision, AM sound +5.5 MHz.
819F = 819 lines French system: positive vision, AM sound -11.15 MHz. *
405 = 405 lines British system: positive vision, AM sound -3.5 MHz.
625F = 625 lines French UHF system: positive vision, AM sound +6.5 MHz.

* For other French channels (819 lines: channel width was 14 MHz!). -11.15 MHz. for even channels and +11,15 MHz. for odd channels.

PHOTOS

Peter Van Der Kramer's TV DX antenna installation near Rotterdam, Netherlands, 1971.

Nico Peereboom's TV DX antenna installation, Netherlands, 1971.

LINKS

Benelux DX-Club (BDXC-NL) Netherlands.


All intellectual property rights in the material and information on this webpage belongs to Gösta Van Linden, unless indicated otherwise. All text and photos copyright © 2015 Gösta Van Linden.

Webpage compiled by Todd Emslie, 19-9-2015.