What is digital radio broadcasting?
DRB is a revolutionary audio broadcasting technology, which dramatically improves sound quality, and signal reliability for local stations and will enable you to receive a host of new services through your radio. DRB transmits music and voice signals using computer-like data bits producing sound quality almost identical to compact discs.

Digital radio transmits music and voice signals using computer-like pulses producing sound quality almost identical to Compact Disc.

Why is the transition to digital transmission necessary?
Every communication medium is embracing the superior quality and increased capacity made possible by digital technology. In today's competitive marketplace, radio must keep pace, providing the highest quality of sound and an array of new and appealing services that ensures that it remain a dynamic media.

What will DRB mean to Canadian radio listeners?
DRB will provide CD-quality, interference-free reception on radios in your home, in your car or through other devices such as personal media players, computers and cellphones. It will be your most accessible mobile and wireless connection to the information highway. The potential for services through DRB is virtually unlimited.

  • Dynamic labels describing the artist, song titles and more.
  • Traffic and news briefs scrolled in a text format while listening to your favorite channel.
  • Numerous other information based-services.
  • As the digital radio system matures, many services will be integrated in both free and subscription formats; maps, visual traffic, pictures and more.

Will listeners need to purchase new receivers?
Yes, to receive the digital radio sound and other services you will need a special digital receiver that is technically compatible with the DRB system being broadcast by your local stations as well as the particular radio band(s) being used for these transmissions.

Will Canada's DRB system be technically compatible with the one being implemented by US broadcasters?
The only DRB services currently available in Canada use the Eureka-147 transmission system, and are being broadcast in L-Band spectrum (1452-1492 MHz). This system cannot be implemented in the US because no suitable frequency bands have been allocated in that country for such purposes. Some Canadian broadcasters may decide in the future to implement DRB services using HD RadioTM technology that is being rolled out by US broadcasters in the FM band (88-108 MHz). Evaluation of this technology's ability to meet the needs of Canada's radio broadcasters is on-going.

Will conventional AM and FM radio services disappear anytime soon?
No. AM and FM band services will continue to be available alongside the new digital services, for at least 10 years before they are gradually phased out.

How will digital radio affect Canada's radio broadcasters?
Radio broadcasters will become key players in delivering information and entertainment to Canadians via the information highway. Digital radio is a vast improvement in sound quality and information services, and this will allow broadcasters to better serve their listeners.

Can I use a satellite radio receiver to pick up DRB broadcasts from local stations?
No. Digital receivers employed in North America for the reception of Sirius Satellite Radio and XM Satellite Radio subscription-based services are not currently capable of receiving the free DRB services offered by local broadcasters in Canada, the USA or Mexico.