ExeDAB

A new suite of digital radio stations is coming to Exeter, and ExeDAB is applying to be the transmission company to host them.

Digital radio for relatively small areas has been planned for some time. Now, following a trial, broadcast regulator Ofcom has decided which areas will be first to benefit from the new services – and Exeter is in the first batch.

ExeDAB has the skills and local knowledge to make a success of small-scale DAB in Devon. It brings together:

  • Exe Broadcasting: the independent company that owns Radio Exe, the commercial radio station broadcasting from Exeter
  • Phonic FM: Exeter’s community radio station
  • Riviera FM: Torbay’s community radio station

What is DAB?

DAB stands for ‘Digital Audio Broadcasting’ – this is the future of radio here in the UK and in many other countries around the world.

At some point FM as we know it will be switched off. As well as being less prone to interference DAB opens up new opportunities for broadcasters and a dramatic increase in listener choice.
Here at ExeDAB we’re planning to broadcast a wide range of stations for a wide range of tastes, interests, communities and age groups.


How it Works
FM radio is sent out as a transmission on a particular frequency. If you tune away from that frequency, you’ll quickly get static. DAB radio works differently. Many stations are sent together on one frequency and the listener chooses their favourite which is allowed through by their radio excluding the others.
The way DAB signals are sent brings some extra benefits, too. For one thing, stations can send out additional information like pictures, song names and other info.. DAB signals are also better able to work around obstacles between your radio and the transmitter, like large buildings, and they carry their own protection against transmission errors.


Why broadcast on DAB?

  • 67% of the population tune-in to digital radio every week.​
  • The vast majority of digital listening is via DAB.
  • ExeDAB will be focused on the city so you won’t be wasting money reaching places outside your immediate catchment area.
  • DAB is eco-friendly, sustainable and socially responsible.
  • It consumes 80% less electricity; requires 75% less capital investment; reduces operating expenditure and support costs  by 65%.

The area

Focused on an area around Exeter, ExeDAB is expected to reach a population of about 130,000 adults. We’ll embrace Crediton, Topsham and Broadclyst. Although the final area has yet to be defined, the approximate area is illustrated in the map below.

The partners

Exe Broadcasting
The company that owns Radio Exe, Exe Broadcasting, is based in Exeter, holding the FM commercial licence for the city and surrounding area, and a digital broadcast licence covering Exeter, East and Mid Devon, Torbay and North Devon. Radio Exe reaches over 52,000 listeners aged over 15 every month on air and its online content is read by more than 100,000 people every month.


Phonic FM
Exeter’s community station Phonic FM broadcasts from the Exeter Phoenix centre in the city. It plays a range of music not normally covered on commercial stations, together with a breadth of speech content and is especially strong on local arts coverage.


Riviera FM
Community station Riviera FM serves Torbay from studios in Torquay. Having been an
online service for many years, it began broadcasting on FM in 2020. An Exeter service from Riviera is planned.


Our Chairperson
Dr David Treharne is ExeDAB’s chairperson. He holds the same role at ExeDAB’s community radio station partner Phonic FM. He’s a retired university lecturer, sometime chair of Exeter City Football Club and has broadcast on radio stations in the UK & USA since 1985.

Join us (Station)

If you run a radio service, or wish to start one, ExeDAB is the low-cost, high-tech way of broadcasting on DAB digital radio.

The number of services will be limited, but we’d love to have you on board. Complete our expression of interest form and you could be in the line-up!

As well as transmission our partners and associates can advise you on all aspects of set-up, licencing and operation. Turnkey packages are available including some with on-going operational management.

Information provided here may be used as part of our application however there is no contractual obligation to use our service, at this stage you are simply stating an expression of interest. We will also use the information you provide to answer your enquiries.