Advantages of Freesat over Freeview?

Discussion in 'Home Entertainment Computers' started by TomP, Sep 7, 2012.

  1. TomP

    TomP
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    Probably dumb questions but...

    Hopefully I'll finally be buying HD capable tuners next week. I had planned to just go with four dvb-t/t2 tuners but I have two satellite connections in my apartment for a communal sky dish and I'm wondering if it's worth using them and going for a dual dvb-t/t2 and dual dvb-s/s2 tuner set up instead.

    I've compared the channel lineups of freeview and freesat and there's nothing exclusive to freesat that I couldn't live without, so it's really whether it's worth it from a technical point of view. From what I've read satellite has more capacity than terrestrial so I'm wondering whether this translates to better quality recordings in either sd or hd.

    Also, I'm slightly confused about the situation regarding UK FTV hd and broadcast flags, content encryption, epg encryption and that like. I'll be using for the record as a backend on Windows Home Server 2011with an XBMC PVR front end with only content from freeview and maybe freesat. Will I be able to record, edit and backup HD content as I can with SD?

    Thanks
    Tom
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2012
  2. 961

    961
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    Freeview bandwidth is always severely limited by the government's desire to flog off spectrum to phone cos etc, whereas Astra spectrum is, in theory, pretty unlimited

    So Astra can give very much better picture quality depending on what the station owner wishes to spend on bandwidth. At the same time, the freeview system is trying to cram more and more stations onto its limited bandwidth with the obvious deterioration in quality

    Some argue that quality on Astra by some channels has been downgraded so that it does not become obvious that freeview transmissions are poor in relation to original high quality high def as first transmitted by the BBC

    I'd go for the satellite. Every time. If you want the EPG from Freesat you can go that way, if you want the EPG from Sky you can simply use a sky box.
     
  3. WheresMyArtisan

    WheresMyArtisan
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    I've got Freeview, and I'm very happy with it. The HD picture quality looks blooming good to me, and seems to be limited more by the programme production quality than bit rate. For example, a BBC nature programme looks almost 3D, whereas a current affairs programme that is HD looks only slightly better than SD.

    Having said all that, if I was starting from scratch and had a dish already cabled as you have then it would be sensible to go for the satellite option. With our bungalow, the only place we could have a dish would be on the front, at head-height, which was the main factor in deciding to for freeview instead.

    On the other hand, one of my most viewed channels is Quest, which I don't think is available on Freesat. Perhaps I'm an anorak, but I'm a big fan of How It's Made and Mythbusters.

    If you have both available and cabled then it may be worth thinking about getting a combination of the two, to get the best of both. It does take a bit of setting up, but may be worth it if there are channels that you like on one or the other, or for future channels that may appear on either platform in the future.
     
  4. AMc

    AMc
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    FWIW I run 1xDVB-S2 and 2xDVB-T tuners using W7MC.
    It's a pain in the neck, there are sometimes problems that affect my DVB-T tuners (when windows decides I should be using a transmitter my aerial isn't pointing at on different frequencies). Other times there are problems when a sat broadcaster moves transponder or moves from DVB-S2 to S and the recordings simply stop until I work out what went wrong and I fix it.
    I know XBMC is a different kettle of fish but if you have the choice to go with one platform or the other I would expect it to be simpler to set up and keep running than BOTH platforms at the same time.
    If I had the money and a fresh installation then I would go for a single card 4xDVB-T2 tuner.
     
  5. steford

    steford
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    I don't find the Freeview/Freesat mix any hassle other than the occasional retune (1 for C4HD I seem to remember). Freesat/Sat has the advantage of the odd extra channel and the likelihood that anything new will appear there eg the 24 Olympic channels etc (although I use a motorised system for these). Freeview has the advantage of a single cable and decent HD coverage now. If you have the cabling already I'd say it's worth adding a sat card for added flexibility - cheaper than DVB-T2 too.
     
  6. spyder viewer

    spyder viewer
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    If you are only ever going to need two tuners, then freesat will be fine but if ever you want more than two tuners to record 2+ and watch another or want to stick a tv in the bedroom/kitchen etc then freeview will be easiest. Not seen any real diference in picture quality. For me W7MC is much easier to set up and maintain in freeview because there is significantly fewer dead/duplicate channels to delete from the channel list.
     
  7. TomP

    TomP
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    Thanks for the replies

    The impression I'm getting from here and what I've read elsewhere is that freesat should be a far superior platform but at the moment it's fairly marginal.
     
  8. TomP

    TomP
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    Well, for better or worse I've gone with 2xT2/2xS2.

    Thanks for all the comments.
     

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