NITV – currently available on your TV on channel 34 - will be transitioning to become a High Definition (HD) channel from Tuesday 5 December, 2023. This means that we’ll bring you all your favourite movies, sport, entertainment, docos, Jarjums, news and current affairs, and more, in glorious HD.
While most people have TV sets (or TVs with a recorder or a set top box) that allow them to access HD channels, we know there are some people who may not have the right equipment to keep watching NITV on channel 34. If that applies to you, don’t worry because you can watch NITV on channel 36 instead, which goes live as NITV as a Standard Definition (SD) channel from Tuesday 5 December, 2023. No matter what TV you use, you can keep watching NITV.
And we’re also always available to stream 24/7 on SBS On Demand, where you can also watch all your favourite NITV shows any time.
What do you need to do to watch NITV in HD?
The good news is that most people won’t have to do anything.
From 5 December 2023, NITV in HD will be accessible on television sets, or devices using recorders or set top boxes, which are MPEG-4 compatible. MPEG-4 refers to the compression technology commonly used by broadcasters today for the distribution of high-quality video content. Most television sets made after 2014 use this technology, and in fact many TV channels in Australia are broadcast with it. It allows us to provide better picture and sound quality.
For the majority of people, the technology in your TV these days will do the work automatically for you, without the need to retune.
However, if you switch on NITV on channel 34 on your TV from 5 December 2023 or after and you can’t see NITV, you may need to retune, or your TV may not be compatible. Keep reading for more information and tips to work through this, below.
Do I need to retune my TV?
Some people may need to retune for channel 34 or channel 36 to appear. Should you need to retune, there are some simple instructions for doing so available on our online
What if I can’t access NITV on channel 34 from 5 December 2023?
If you are using an older television, recorder or set top box, and find that you cannot watch or record SBS channels 30 (SBS HD), 31 (SBS VICELAND) and 32 (SBS World Movies), your device might not be compatible with the MPEG-4 technology used to transmit NITV in HD as well (and which is the most commonly used standard for distribution of video content today).
For that equipment, you can still access NITV on channel 36. You can also always stream NITV, or catch up on NITV programs, on SBS On Demand.
How can I check/fix my access to NITV in HD?
If your device is not compatible, when watching channel 34 from 5 December 2023, you may see a black screen, an error message like "invalid channel" or can only hear audio but there’s no picture, which means the receiver on your device may not be compatible.
You can contact the manufacturer of your TV to confirm if the specific model of your device is MPEG-4 compatible. If it's not compatible, and they can't provide a firmware update to solve the issue, there are three options for accessing NITV in HD on channel 34:
- Installing a digital set top box will allow your existing television to access NITV – and all SBS channels - using the current-day technology. They’re available to purchase from most electronic stores, are easy to install and set up, and don’t take up much space. It will then allow you to watch any television channel in Australia, across all the free-to-air networks.
- Another option is to upgrade your TV – most televisions today allow you to watch live TV channels, but Smart TVs can also allow you to easily access streaming apps like SBS On Demand through your television, giving you access to thousands of hours of programming, at your convenience.
- Watch the channel and its programs by using SBS On Demand on another type of device, like a computer, laptop, tablet or smart phone.
How do I get access to NITV in SD on channel 36?
If from 5 December, 2023, you can’t automatically see channel 36, then you may need to retune for the SD channel to appear.
If you require any assistance with the NITV in HD please click here.