Live Aid

dankargo

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I'm a 90s kid so unfortunetly I wasn't around when this took place, although it will forever be the event that I longed to experience given the incredible list of performers. I just recently discovered the BBC broadcast and spent this whole weekend watching it in parts. As it occurred five years before my birth year, I'm keen to read other people's recollections of the event and how you followed it, given it was such a worldwide spectacle.

Secondly, the satellite enthusiast in me is interested in learning more about how it was all uplinked, especially given it was the mid-80s when the infrastructure was nowhere near as it is today. Does anyone know what satellites were used? I'm guessing it was all carried in the clear. It's almost impossible to find any kind of information online, if any public info exists. It's pretty astounding that Geldof requested the broadcasters to destroy their off air recordings to avoid any future legal fees that would have occurred with repeats. Thank goodness MTV and BBC ignored that request :D

For anyone interested, you can watch the entire BBC output on Archive.org. Much prefer the continuous TX to the DVD they put out a few decades ago. (May need a VPN switched to San Francisco for it to play smoothly).

 

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Youngsters have to remember the tv scene was vastly different in the mid 80s to what it is now - there were only 4 tv channels BBC1 BBC2 ITV & Channel4. Multi channel satellite delivered tv was a decade in the future, it would be 12 years before Channel 5 was launched. So we all sat down to watch it via terrestrial analogue BBC

BTW - dont mess around with trying to stream it via archive - just download it :D
 

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For anyone interested, you can watch the entire BBC output on Archive.org.
Out of interest does this include the Led Zeppelin segment?
 

Llew

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I'm a 90s kid so unfortunetly I wasn't around when this took place, although it will forever be the event that I longed to experience given the incredible list of performers. I just recently discovered the BBC broadcast and spent this whole weekend watching it in parts. As it occurred five years before my birth year, I'm keen to read other people's recollections of the event and how you followed it, given it was such a worldwide spectacle.

Secondly, the satellite enthusiast in me is interested in learning more about how it was all uplinked, especially given it was the mid-80s when the infrastructure was nowhere near as it is today. Does anyone know what satellites were used? I'm guessing it was all carried in the clear. It's almost impossible to find any kind of information online, if any public info exists. It's pretty astounding that Geldof requested the broadcasters to destroy their off air recordings to avoid any future legal fees that would have occurred with repeats. Thank goodness MTV and BBC ignored that request :D

For anyone interested, you can watch the entire BBC output on Archive.org. Much prefer the continuous TX to the DVD they put out a few decades ago. (May need a VPN switched to San Francisco for it to play smoothly).

Some details from Intelsat:

 

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Band Aid 40 will be along in a few minutes.
 

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I believe it's just after the Bruce Springsteen section.
That may be the schedule but is it actually there? The three surviving members of Led Zep were reportedly so unhappy with the performance of Phil Collins on drums that they forbad any further distribution of their section after it had been transmitted live.
 

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I had no dishes in 1985, my first one was four years later, in 1989.
However, as I know, the main satellite used in the 80s for major events feeds from the USA to Europe was Intelsat at 34.5 West.
Please note that in 1985 Ku band was in its earliest phase, so most feeds between different continents was in C band. I do not believe that 34.5W satellite had Ku band transponders in its payload.
In Europe, EBU was beginning to use 10E and 7E for european feeds during that period, in addition to its terrestrial 2 GHz feeds.
Ku band feeds between USA and Europe began in the late 80s. For example, I remember EBU transponders at 27.5W and something at 18.5W (both Intelsat), and strong signals from the USA at 45.0W too (Panamsat 1).
 

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That may be the schedule but is it actually there? The three surviving members of Led Zep were reportedly so unhappy with the performance of Phil Collins on drums that they forbad any further distribution of their section after it had been transmitted live.
Judge for yourself. Poor old Phil’s star never recovered and other artists started to distance themselves from him
 

mapperuo

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So did the BBC take the Wembley feed direct or did they take the return feed after it had been sent via sat to the US?

Quite a delay if so, Wembley -> Goonhilly teleport -> Philly -> Goonhilly (possibly via an intermediate hop, hard to tell with the split page graphic)
 

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Please note that in 1985 Ku band was in its earliest phase, so most feeds between different continents was in C band. I do not believe that 34.5W satellite had Ku band transponders in its payload.
Eh ?
 

7mdish

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So??? What?
It was in 1985, isn't it?
If I remember correctly (not sure), in 1985 that orbital slot (34.5W) was used by an Intelsat IV bird, and Intelsat began to put Ku band payloads on all its satellites starting from Intelsat V.
In fact, in the early 90s Ku band was present at 34.5W.
Please correct me if I wrong. Thanks.
 

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Ku was available (up and down) some two years before Live Aid. Perhaps you don't know the business rivalry of that era, or Leonard Goldenson
 

dankargo

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Thanks for the links, I don’t think I was looking hard enough. Really interesting insight
 

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Ku was available (up and down) some two years before Live Aid. Perhaps you don't know the business rivalry of that era, or Leonard Goldenson
Sorry, I don't know Leonard Goldenson, never heard before.
This is my information: OTS was the first european satellite having Ku band payload on it. Launched in 1978, it was an experimental bird not used for TV signals for some years.
The first Ku band TV signal in Europe from OTS was activated on April 26th 1982, it was a music channel called Music Box.
The first commercial Ku-band european satellite was launched in June 1983 (exactly 40 years ago in this days....) and it was called Eutelsat I F1 (or ECS-1), located at 13 East. It broadcasted about 9 or 10 channels beginning in Autumn 1983.
Three years earlier, in 1980, Intelsat positioned its first european Ku-band bird, Intelsat V F2 at 1 West.
As I said, previous Intelsat generation (Intelsat IV) had no Ku band payload and their C band transponders was regularly used for main feeds between USA and Europe from the locations at 24.5W and mainly 34.5W, all in C band. I do not know the situation in eastern part of the Clarke belt, but I believe (not sure) that all feeds from Asia or Pacific area came through the USA so from West positions.
Please add your information, this is a very interesting topic I believe. Thanks.
 

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That may be the schedule but is it actually there? The three surviving members of Led Zep were reportedly so unhappy with the performance of Phil Collins on drums that they forbad any further distribution of their section after it had been transmitted live.
I was joking, Springsteen had better things to do on the day.

From memory Zeppelin had fallen apart some time before the event, they never bothered to rehearse thinking it would be alright on the night.
 

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So did the BBC take the Wembley feed direct or did they take the return feed after it had been sent via sat to the US?

Quite a delay if so, Wembley -> Goonhilly teleport -> Philly -> Goonhilly (possibly via an intermediate hop, hard to tell with the split page graphic)

Finally got round to watching this, they lost the JFK feed quite a couple times and cut back to Wembley, so clearly the BBC had a direct feed of wembley which makes most sense. So this sentence from the above article cannot be correct

"Everything, including Wembley, came into Philadelphia before it went to be seen on the BBC"
 

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Actually during The Who from Wembley they lost that feed and had to cut to JFK with audio only from BBC reporter in Wembley so maybe its right...

BBC OB at Wembley with the BBC studio in the arena that took a world feed OB from JFK that included Wembley stage feed.
 
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