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Alternative options to FreeSat box

Discussion in 'Satellite TV, Sky TV & FreeSat' started by Boots0608, Feb 14, 2018.


    1. Boots0608

      Boots0608
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      Hi

      I recently posted regarding some assistance of identifying some cables we had coming into our house, and had a good reply and some really useful help.

      Long story short, we are only receiving TV via freeview at the moment, and I wanted to gain access to the "FreeSport" channel on freeview. Apparently after discussing with freeview, this is broadcaster on COM8 (a HD signal apparently?) and our local transmitters does not broadcast this. I am only after this for the NHL live matches/highlight shows.

      The previous owners of our house left their skydish on the roof, and those leads I originally mentioned are the leads coming from the dish. I tested this out last night by borrowing a skybox from a colleague and the skybox instantly worked and picked up all the Free to air channels (including FreeSport).

      So my next thought was to purchase a FreeSat box, as this would give me access through the dish to FreeSport, however looking at the price of a recordable Humax box is about £150 (for one without a built in hard drive im looking at £90). I ideally need the recording feature as the timings of the live games is often around 1am. Is there alternative options I am overseeing as opposed to splashing £150 on a box literally to just record the games? I know I could buy a pass on the NHL site and watch them online, but ideally id like to have the channel. I understand a Sky Box wont allow me to record if I don't have a subscription.

      Would an Openbox be able to facilitate what I need? I have read a few things on them, and one comment is it doesn't have the EPG FreeSat does. Are you able to set an Openbox to record something in the future (i.e. set it to record the match at 1am before heading to bed)?

      Thank You
       
      Last edited: Feb 14, 2018
    2. grahamlthompson

      grahamlthompson
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    3. pedro2000uk

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      Boxes like the Openbox would / should record to most USB flash drives or HDDs which most people have lying around or a flash drives with a few Gig are cheap.

      The software, while not the most poloshed or intuitive, does work and you can do a lot more with those boxes, much more on the satellite side & should run IPTV & several net based apps. The overall build quality is not bad for the price but it is what it is there v £.

      When you say it's on HD .. the Freesports on Freeview is on T2, it's associated or confused with HD but it can carry SD or data streams MULTISTREAM 4k uhd etc.. it's just capable of more flexibiliy & more efficiently (if the stream / noise levels allow it's higher effeciency gains) .

      On satellite it's DVB-S2 (rather than dvb-s (1) ) & again can carry anything.

      Freesports UK have, very recently, made comments they may in May go HD btw..
       
    4. Boots0608

      Boots0608
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      Thank you. Yes I think the lady on the freeview phone number rang said it was an SD channel but broadcasted on a HD frequency or something so that ties with what you said.

      If it goes HD, will a Openbox still be able to pick this up? Or would I need a new dish to pick up HD channels? Iv never had sky personally so I don't really know what's involved when Sky has improved/changed over the years from SD to HD, and now 4K etc...have people had to change dishes or just the box itself.

      Is the interface on the Openbox relatively user friend? Given I would predominately just be using it to pick up the Freesports channel (I will hook it up to a spare TV so it will only be used for the sports and rarely to watch other channels).

      Is there a requirement on the Openbox to have it connected to the internet? The spare TV is some distance from the router, so Ethernet would not be an option (all be it if wifi is an option it should be fine as the playstation runs fine online on the spare tv) . The channels though would be coming through the dish not the internet correct? I really don't know much on IPTV.
       
    5. logiciel

      logiciel
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      You don't need either a new box or new dish to receive HD.
      There are many boxes other than Openbox!
      I'd rather have a FS machine but they'll be as good except for the EPG.
      You don't need an Internet connection for them.
       
    6. Boots0608

      Boots0608
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      Are there any boxes you would suggest/recommend then rather than the Openbox?
       
    7. TJT1

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      A Freesat box?
       
    8. pedro2000uk

      pedro2000uk
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      The openboxes were made to be a very cheap box but you plug one in and it'll do what you want and a lot more. The user interface is OK.

      The EPG is now and next, other boxes like the Technomates / the (all) E2 boxes & of course Freesat / sky boxes support 7 day EPG except maybe some older Freesat boxes.

      You get what you pay for in most cases, but the Openbox is not dear. It like most boxes are HD if Freesports is made available in HD Free To Air.

      What's the budget/ price range that your happy with.

      There are other satellite receivers based on the same or very related chip sets .. eg boxes called (called) Skybox F3/5 & boxes called Freesat .. but are just using those names. .

      Lots of other satellite receivers .. loads using the Enigma 2 OS with a full range of features & quality or for none Enigma there's Technomate 5402s & TM f3/5s
       
    9. Boots0608

      Boots0608
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      Thanks for the reply. In all honesty I was looking at keeping it under £50.... because I only want it for the one thing (NHL). Iv got an external Hard Drive I can plug up to it to record onto. I know I will need to spend a few quid either way on an extension cable as I am probably about 10 meters short from the cable coming into the house and where the spare tv is in another room. As long as I can set it to record the games overnight and the user interface is useable it will probably suffice my need. The FreeSat box in all honesty would be perfect I admit that but just for the one sport at the moment I don't believe I can justify splashing out around £100 at the moment.
       
    10. logiciel

      logiciel
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      The TV itself doesn't have Freesat, right?
       
    11. Boots0608

      Boots0608
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      No TV doesnt have FreeSat installed already sadly.
       
    12. logiciel

      logiciel
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      By shopping around you'll find a few machines at around £50 but a drive for recording will put that up to nearer to £100.
       
    13. pedro2000uk

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      I think you can pick up an Openbox very cheap & it will do what you want if the hdd works OK (re formating of HDDs & flash drives can cause issues. . Default formating usually works)

      Actually the coax extension is one to watch .. if you get a ready made one with moulded plugs.. some can be real rubbish . Better to just make one up and then there's making sure you do the connectors well.. a short can damage a box
       
    14. pedro2000uk

      pedro2000uk
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      There's a lot of owners of tvs that have freesat or satellite on their TVs without knowing it.. found one on a job a couple of days ago, tv manufactures or resellers don't always promote if it has it & it's only when you see the f connector next to the aerial connector.... so I'd still have a look on the back.
       
      Last edited: Feb 14, 2018
    15. logiciel

      logiciel
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      Good point!
       
    16. Boots0608

      Boots0608
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      I think you might be right, looking on ebay last night you can pick up a second hand Humax FreeSat box with a relatively decent size HD (320-500GB) for about £75-£380 (including postage). It might be a case of by time I add up a cheaper openbox and possibly a new HD pending if my current one can spare the room, I wont be far off that £75.

      Are the older boxes still worth picking up? I think a few of the ones around £75 are Humax Foxsat boxes.

      Additionally, an issue I hadn't given much though to, given as I mentioned I would need to extend my cables, that means extend two cables about 10-15 meters into the next room. In truth its unlikely id find myself needing to plug both in, I am right in saying with just the one cable coming in I can still watch and record on the same channel? For my needs, it would just be setting it on the channel before heading to bed, and it recording that channel. I don't foresee where id need to watch one channel and record another.

      Thanks
       
    17. TJT1

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      I do that all the time. Record something half decent while SWMBO is watching Coro or Eastenders
       
    18. grahamlthompson

      grahamlthompson
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      The Humax boxes can connect both tuners to a single cable. You still get to record two and watch a 3rd with some restrictions. For most channels you get a bit less than 50% of the channels usable by the second tuner. The Foxsat-HDR requires a short cable to connect tuner 1 out to tuner 2 in. The G2 HDR-xxxxS boxes have an automatic internal link. The Foxsat-HDR can run a custom firmware add on that greatly extends the box capability but doesn't have as good a picture as the new boxes.
       
    19. logiciel

      logiciel
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      What's the 380?!
      Yes, you'll be fine with the one cable.
       
    20. Boots0608

      Boots0608
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      Sorry the 380 (well 360 I put) meant HD size (so GB after it).
       
    21. pat clancy

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      Xoro HRS 9200 CI+ Satellite Receiver I bought one of these off here very cheap from the classified and it's brilliant ,great for me as dab is rubbish so I get lots of radio channels ,epg not great, but the timer is fine
       

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