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Advice on satellite dishes that can pick up free Euro TV?

Veni Vidi Vici

Well-known Member
Hi

I was wondering if anyone has any knowledge on satellite dishes that can pick up free European channels, that you would normally pay to view via Sky and alike? For example the big fights, premiership games etc..

Are the legal to buy and use? Any companies that install these "stand alone" systems. Any advice welcome.

thank you.
 

PerfectBlue97

Active Member
As far as I know, you use any freesat setup with a decoder card reader and simply line it up with the right satellite. If it's pay-TV then you will need to buy a decoder card.

European law is a little weird on this.

Technically you can buy any product produced within the EU and use it anywhere within the EU unless there are specific laws prohibiting it (For example, you cannot buy an automatic rifle in Europe and import it into the UK). So you can legally buy a French or German decoder card and use it in your home. If you have a method payment set up you can then view pay-per-view events.

However, there was a case a while back when a pub in Britain was sued for using a European decoder card to view sports for a fraction of the price that Sky was showing them for.

I think that Sky won because it was a pub, and not a home, so free trade laws didn't come into effect.

As for actually getting hold of a decoder card and setting up an account, you would probably have to find your nearest father-son installation company (not a store like Currys). If they cannot do it for you, then they will probably know somebody who can.

It's legal to watch under free trade laws, but if you start inviting all of your friends round and getting them to cough up some cash to view it, then you are probably going against the terms that the card was sold to you under?
 

logiciel

Moderator
The forum is full of people who do this as a matter of course.
It's not the dish that you need knowledge of - a Sky one pointed in the right direction would do.
You need to know about he machine for receiving from the dish and the channels you want to use it for.
A Google search will.find you a whole wide range of those.
There are many organisations that can give you all the details and sell you the gear, such as:
purplesat.com - Satellite & Aerial TV Installations & products.
Freesat is something quite different - an EPG like Sky's that covers as its name suggests only free channels.
 

PerfectBlue97

Active Member
Freesat is something quite different - an EPG like Sky's that covers as its name suggests only free channels.

Getting freesat is a way of getting a box, dish and cabling in one neat package. just make sure that you get a box that can take a decoder card.

If you aim your freesat dish at a European Satellite rather than the regular freesat one then you can get the European channels

I used to user Lyngsat to track channels that I could receive that weren't censored by the government (I lived in a pretty repressive country back in the day).

SatTracker - Europe, Africa & Middle East - LyngSat SatTracker
 

PerfectBlue97

Active Member
Thanks. So you don't have to pay a subscription then, you just pay for the dish and installation?

What you pay depends on what content you want to receive. There are hundreds of free channels in dozens of languages, but also premium ones.
 

Veni Vidi Vici

Well-known Member
What you pay depends on what content you want to receive. There are hundreds of free channels in dozens of languages, but also premium ones.

Oh ok. Your have to excuse my ignorance, I didn't even know you could get these dishes until recently so I know nothing about them. So how do you know what channels you want to subscribe to, is there a list of providers and costs?
 

PerfectBlue97

Active Member
Oh ok. Your have to excuse my ignorance, I didn't even know you could get these dishes until recently so I know nothing about them. So how do you know what channels you want to subscribe to, is there a list of providers and costs?

Try Lyngsat for a list of the channels and available satellites.

LyngSat
 

davemurgatroyd2

Distinguished Member
You will find some of the boxing matches (but not all) that are subscription or Pay per View on Sky Sports and Boxnation however the commentary will ot be in English 9usually on the German FTA channels. You will find very little free English or Scottish football on European channels - most are on subscription channels although they include at present at least some of the 3 p.m. k.o.s not shown to the UK Most are unlikely to be available with English commentary as the EPL appeared at the end of last season to be stopping transmitting the English commentary to a lot of the foreign channels. Prices vary from around £250 per year up to over £1200 per year and picture quality is very dependant on the price you are paying.

Equipment required depends on which channels you require a Sky minidish and cheap FTA generic receiver ( or similar kits from B&Q, Aldi etc) cost from £45 upwards plus $60 upwards for installation if you do not DIIY and would give access to a small amount of the channels you are looking for - a subscription service would require a receiver with either an inbuilt cardreader (for the right encryption system) or a CI slot to take a CAM for that encryption system. Larger dishes motorised or fixed are required for some of the satellites whic would cost anything from £60 up to £!20 plus installation or even more for the largest dishes.

This site (rather colourful and a lot of reading) will give you an idea of what is available free and with careful reading you can even see the size of dish required.

BTW to clarify the legal situation of use of foreign subscriptions in private homes recently clarified by the ECJ although it is not criminally illegal it is a breach of the contract under which virtually all viewing cards are sold and as such they can be turned off suddenly without recompense if they are discovered/suspected of being used outside their "approved" territory and this has happened several times over the last few years - so be aware the risk is there.
 
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logiciel

Moderator
So you don't have to pay a subscription then, you just pay for the dish and installation?
Correct, if all you want are the Freesat EPG, and the free UK channels that you can already get on a Sky receiver, but clearly you are looking for considerably more than those.:)
You can move the dish and use the Freesat receiver to get free channels from other satellites but that's not what the receiver is meant for.
As Freesat is by definition free it seems odd that the machines have slots for subscription cards, but if they do then some cards for the types of programming that you're looking for might work in them.
It would be better though to have a machine that isn't specifically meant for free channels, and that has card slots and CAM slots for all the subscription packages.
I didn't even know you could get these dishes until recently. So how do you know what channels you want to subscribe to, is there a list of providers and costs?
You don't HAVE to get ANY special dish - as I said and as dm2 confirms an ordinary Sky one will get a lot of channels from other satellites.
I think the site he meant to link to is the one that I gave - very colourful but about as detailed as anyone could want, and there are straightforward listings sites such as lyngsat and 13 East -FreeChannels.
 
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davemurgatroyd2

Distinguished Member

PerfectBlue97

Active Member
You will find some of the boxing matches (but not all) that are subscription or Pay per View on Sky Sports and Boxnation however the commentary will not be in English

What some people do is to watch sport on TV, but with the volume turned off. They use the radio to get commentary as you can get matches on free radio stations that you are only shown on subscription TV stations. Though there may be a small amount of lag on the picture as satellite signals are usually behind due to encoding\transmission\decoding.
 

dar2005

Active Member
What some people do is to watch sport on TV, but with the volume turned off. They use the radio to get commentary as you can get matches on free radio stations that you are only shown on subscription TV stations. Though there may be a small amount of lag on the picture as satellite signals are usually behind due to encoding\transmission\decoding.

And to take this a step further, some people who possess a couple of PVR's and that use an amp for audio, have the picture coming from one PVR and the sound (usually 5live or 5liveXtra) coming from the other PVR. Then a quick pause / resume on the audio at the right moment aligns the two signals:)

I often use this technique when ITV are showing football - far prefer the 5live commentaries.
 

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