BT Vision


Active Member
BT Vision has arrived!

First of all - can mods please add new sub-forum here as I think it will be quite important service for a while (later it may be worth to upgrade to "VoD" general forum as number of services is going to grow fast)

Second - can anyone please explain - what connection to network V-box (BT set-top box) it could use?

Has it internal wifi or USB to connect external wifi adapter? (I dont want to break existing network infrastructure and I have no wire connection in the lounge)

Would it be possible to get V-box to install it myself? (I dont want to pay 90 pound for what I can do myself in 30 min).

I have asked these on BT website already (they dont publish phone contact yet). If I'd get it from them first I would publish answers here.

Thank you

P.S. forgot to say that set-top box has HDMI and they are promising to bring HD content soon - this is why I think it is good idea to have this subforum in exact this forum. Cheers :)


Well-known Member
BT will be releasing an install at home option in the new year, connection will be to a bt homehub via the ethernet 2 connection on the hub.

Details will follow in Jan


Active Member
Yeah and home hub is just wireless router isnt it? So there is no 'magic' in it. innit? :) Just ethernet link and some specific network settings (like DHCP ;))

I am going to get home hub for free and sell it on ebay anyway. I am happy with my linksys.


Well-known Member
BT Vision launched on the 4th December.

At present it will cost £90 for installation and if you sign up for a new, or extend your current contract by 12 months, users will receive the BT Vision box for free.

At present they say it will only work with a BT Home HUB, as any downloads DO NOT come off you monthly download limit, i don't think a standard router differentiates between BT Vision/download store and normal traffic.

Early January BT will release the 'install at home option' whereby you can still receive the free box and gubbins etc, but only have to pay around £30 or so (maybe free) connection fee.

You'll be surprised at what other options become available on the HUB in the near future.


Active Member
Thank you for the detailed explanation.

All routers are generally the same. It just way you set them up. It might be some VPN it opens to film store or QoS to prioritise traffic.

It may be valid point that setup and support of HomeHub will be a pain if you start use BT services more and more.

But that actually brings another problem - I just afraid to lose my independency. Although I use BT broadband for 5 years. I wont have clear idea of what is going on inside my hub.

I am not even sure if I will have full access to it. etc etc. I dont like my phone to go stright through Voip from home.

This is very confusing me. Bad childhood may be. I dont trust big businesses.

And I think you can agree that there is no technical information whatsoever. Just marketing stuff for regular people. I want to understand every detail as network for me a very important part of my domestic life and I am not going to replace it unless I will feel myself 100% comfortable with it.


Well-known Member
Going off topic, there is a fix to force the Home hub to dial via PSTN first, with the user selecting 5 to dial via VoIP.

I'll try and remember the HUBBUB link and post it here later.

Follow this link to ask question to BT directly, it's a trial site so not officially BT.

Be as specific and technical as needed


Active Member
Thanks again. Is there more resource on the internet I can read about the hub? from independent source not BT.

I just have read Hub manual from BT website. As I thought - everything is preconfigured and you have access through custom software to manage hub but it is obviously very limited.

I couldnt even figure out - whether I will be allowed to change SSID and WEP key. I dont want these things to be preconfigured at all. Moreother I'd like them to be accessible only by me and not from outside including BT engineers. No offence. It just the way I am.

And 64-bit WEP key is simply unacceptable for me. I will never consider to use that even if I have to give up on Vision.


Well-known Member
Try HUBBUB, even though it is BT it can be a good source to find out more, many questions have been asked and it points out some of the Telnet fixes that can be made to make the Hub work a slight bit better than its given to you.

I don't think you can improve on the WEP encryption but, a fix for other issues is due soon.

Good luck, and BTW the box can be hacked to open up more of the administrators functions, but will invalidate warranty.

Happy hacking.


Active Member
My mate was heavily involved with the BT Vision aka Horizion.

He's been keeping me up to date for the last 2 years on it's developments ... and it's very interesting to hear what this can do.

Really looking forward to this going main stream .... especially after hearing about it for the few years.


monkey butler

Active Member
I was really hoping that this (Vbox) would finally be the alternative to Sky+ i've been waiting for.

Unfortunately, according to the BTVision website it says that it requires freeview digital reception to enable the use of the pause, rewind and recording of TV shows.

I'm assuming from this that the vbox has a dual tuner, one tuner using an aerial, the other downloading/streaming through the hub.

Still trying to work out if it would be any good to me, and that I could at least record onto the vbox (could live without pausing/rewinding live TV, as I've never had Sky+).

Help here would be appreciated, as I'm about to jump broadband providers (from Orange).


Active Member
i think it has one digital tuner. for freeview.

that function that you call "streaming through hub" is pure internet data and nothing to do with tuner.


Active Member
it needs an aerial becuase its only a freeview tuner

i think only the on demand stuff will be comming through the bt network

btw is it definatly only one tuner cant watch and record?


Standard Member
I signed up for the sevice approximately six months ago, after receiving my Home-Hub. The annoying thing is that there is no contact No's etc. You have to fill a form in on-line expressing an interest. I finally received an email from Bt Vision today, basically saying that they were aware of my interest,but due to demand could not give me a date for install etc. Just be aware that it may take months before you get a response let alone an install date!!


Standard Member
Just watched Bills Gates doing his CES speech. Near the end of the Entertainment section it was mentioned that IPTV would be coming to Xbox360 this year and there was a BT logo on the presentation screen. Presumably then this means that sometime next year you will be able to subscribe to BTVision through 360 and use it instead of a BT Vbox. Unless microsoft are going to do something mad I would think that should allow you to use any router instead of the homehub as normal for the xboxlive service.

However there are also supposed pics of a new edition 360 coming this year which has, most importantly, an HDMI socketand a much larger 120gig HDD, which would be needed if the 360 was to be used instead of the Vbox. Not actually confirmed as existing yet anyway. Leads to questions though.

Maybe they would still try and limit you to BT equipment by only offering this version Xbox as a deal with BTBroadband or something like that?
Would people, like me, with current 360's be able to get the service? The Hard Drive is upgradeable but there is no HDMI port, only component or VGA. BT have made a point of repeatedly saying the Vbox is future proof (HA!) as it has HDMI for HD content later.
Why is it a big deal to use HDMI instead of component. SkyHD gives you the choice doesn't it? I thought copy protection stuff was included in the signal regardless (for example my sony HDR860 knows an input from another dvd player on scart is a DVD and refuses to record it).


Active Member
Hi guys just got my BT Vision box yesterday.

It has a twin Digital Tuner for watching and recording.
The Broadband is used for VOD/Games, the EPG and software updates.

Its a Philips box powered by microsoft CE/IPTV.
If youve seen the XBOX 360 video as mentioned earlier in this post it looks pretty much the same on screen interface/menus.

The back of the machine has two scarts, SPDIF, HDMI, SVIDEO, Ethernet (for the broadband stuff mentioned earlier) and a load of USBs (don't know what for yet, maybe wireless network connection instead of ethernet, or as a network enabled media center???).
It also has on the front the TUTV slots and another USB.

The HDD will save 80hrs of content (160Gb hard drive).

As you can see this box has loads of potential, barring a recordable DVD drive it has everything I could possible want from a DigiBox.

Unfortuantely, I have a few problems with it, but I am a very early adopter and BT are trying to fox all the problems. A new software update should be coming on Friday.

My current problems are:

1) Can't Record. Message on screen says "There have been scheduling changes. This programme must be recorded manually" or "Error R02"

I have reset the box (using the Down and Select buttons on the front) but still can't record.

2) Channel 4 is not on ch slot 4 its on ch slot 800!!

3) Sound through the SPDIF is un-listenable it breaks up constantly (previous netgem box had no problems with digital sound)

4) The TV Guide does not show whats on, just says "Loading...". I will check this again tonight and see if it now works (as previous posts have suggested)

I am disapointed by these problems but it has so much potential I am willing to hang on for a bit longer yet!!


I have had BT Vision installed today and my immediate experience is.........

Not good.

Engineer who came was an older bloke so at least he was chatty but he did not really know that much about it.
Set it up with HDMI connection onto my flat panel HD tv and immediately had no picture.
Had to start the box on scart.
The vbox then began it's install procedure - an easy job for the engineer as it is 15 minutes of auto install and downloading from the internet.
The vbox resets 4 times! and eventually starts to use the hdmi connection.
The hdmi connection does NOT work properly - picture but no sound or on/off sound also vbox outputs 720p or 1080i but selecting those freezes the picture and the box restarts!
I have got round the sound problem by using the analogue audio output on the box and linking this thru the tv to the hdmi channel.

Anyway thought OK i'll try the pvr and record and see what thats like. BUT record did not work? Checked the BOX system settings and it tells me that no hard disk is present!
So at the moment useless on hdmi and useless as a pvr - £90 for a set top box crosses my mind.

Phoned btvision technical support - This is appalling because it is the BT total broadband support and had to ring twice because the personnel did not even know what BTVISION was!!!
Eventually i called the seperate BT vision accounts helpline, explained my problem with the helpdesk staff and he helpfully passes me onto the real btvision helpdesk. Talk to a guy called Steve who is very helpfully and tells me the following -

The VBOX does NOT support HDMI at the moment - the box has been released with BT fully knowing this!!!! Appalling.
Steve did say that a new firmware patch may be released this friday however he cannot guarentee that this will fix the problem at all.

As for the disk drive problem i had to perform a hard reset of the box - remove the power lead, hold the down arrow and OK button on the box and then re-insert the power lead, wait for the startup screen and then let go of the buttons.
This meant running thru the whole 15 minutes setup again but it did work and i know have a hdd PVR- hurrah.

The epg is not 100% reliable i have gone into it a number of times and all the channels say loading but no scheduling appears - the channels still work but i cant use the pvr because the epg does not have any info!
The vision download seems ok if not very diverse at the moment although again i have gone into a couple of catergories and got bt vision download service not available.

In summary - Pretty damn disappointing at the moment.
I will keep you informed when (or if - god i hope so) the service improves.
I really want this to work as well.

I also believe that BT Vision should ahve it's own sub-forum.

Philips 42pf7621d / LG DVC9800 / BT Vbox / Nintendo Wii


Active Member
BTW these are my thoughts on BT Vision at the moment:

BT Vision at the moment is that its not 'Fully Released', its in a consumer testing phase.
I believe BT will Fully Release it when it becomes a self install product.

Up to then I think us early adopters are going to have to put up with any problems.

From what I have heard BT do seem to be fixing the bugs quite quickly and that a new software release on Friday will sort out the record and EPG issues.

The Dodgy Digital (SPDIF) audio problem is something they are aware of and trying to fix. Its only a problem on LIVE telly, On demand and recorded stuf is OK so you can pause live TV and watch it a few seconds behind.

My Recording is sort of working now. Still can't do proper EPG recording.

The EPG is broadcast over broadband and is now back working on my box.


Standard Member
My box is coming today so will let you know how it goes (fingers crossed)


I agree with m4rky about us early adopters.
They don't call this kind of stuff the bleeding edge for nothing.

As i work in I.T. i am used to this kind of equipment not quite living upto the description and am quite looking forward to see how it goes.

It would be nice if there was someway other than calling the helpline to report our experiences to BT.

BTW - Will we know if the update goes out or do we need to check our version numbers in system settings?


Active Member
Ivorycalthorpe: Good luck with your install

DoomKmPa: I think we just need to check our version numbers in the settings. I am not sure if the box needs to be in standby mode for the update to work.

BTW I get all my info from this forum:


Standard Member
ok here we go my non techni review of bt vision.

part 1.

well from the top...

engineers arrived late - due 10.30-1.30 but rang to say would be about 4pm and it was. wasn't a problem for me as i work from quite abit. the reason they were so late was two fold - one engioneer was classed as a trainee and therefore did not have access to the lockers that the kit was stored in. he had to wait for his mate to arrive from another install. anyway nice guys and as i picked up here and on digitalspy their product knowledge is limited. my tow ere from business switching systems or something but spent most of their time install the home hubs.

point 1: if 2 engineers arrive like mine there is a good chance that one is in training. cut them some slack, they may be new to the box as well which is an issue for senior management to sort and not the engineers at the end of the day. sounds like their training is very simulated by the way.

point 2: I was offered a home hub - which i have and they had a wireless dongle. i declined as i have enough kit in that department. Part 2 follows

so we go for the connect up. hassle free as i had prepared the space etc.
power up and all looks good but ultimately a total reset is required. this follows a phone call to technical support. whilst they did this we they told me a very funny story about norton antivirus.

second time round all the screens come and go and 15 mins later the auto tuning has happened and we go ot the programmes guide. as already said there are and ahave been isseus with this loading. most of it is not but some is.

point 3: everytime you flick to a channel it adds those programme details to the programme guide. it has been like this all night.


Standard Member
part 2

picture is good - i hada sony box prior and its about the same. some disruption to the picture but not alot. i like the onscreen menus - ona par with the sony i had before. clear and easy to read

point 3: i too have dodgy sound coming from that spdif thingy (thanks m4rky for the alert)

point 4: setting for picture is easy to set up for your screen size etc. but the user guide is pretty basic so i'm betting the helpline is busy.

point 5: connections on rear x 1 HDMI (yes its not enabled) Audio out L+R x2 Scart x 1SPDIF x2USB x1 phone socket (ithink) x1 ethernet to hub x1 svideo and the RF ins and out. oh and dolby digital symbol as well on inleft corner of rear.

so after a few hours of watching yes there are the glitches mentioned - no recording or demand services (they were there but have gone and my hub is working ok) get a message saying error code RO2 / 6. have got pause and rewind but currently no channel /vol / on off control from the remote. will call helpline prbbaly after a couple or resets.

point 6: one of the engineers had the codes for tv control via remote supplied and said they would be included in future customer manuals. but have seen the threads on how to do those anyway here or on digitalspy.

point7: despite some remote issues (need to read the manual) i like it and think it looks/feels good to hold. much better than that sky thing which has always looked depressing to me. yes the blue button is bright when you press but its not a deal breaker. it is finished to match the home hub which i have no problems with. anyway its not a piece of art is it to display? mines behind my tv unit out of sight in any case. wireless connection to the hub will be much better as cable is on the short "standard" size i guess.

point 8: apparently av1 is the preferred scart to use but i transferred mine to av2. i only have one rgb scart on my lowly crt and save that for my dvd.

point 9: the engineers knew nothing about any updates etc tomorrow

point 10: i have two manuals - userguide and troubleshooting oh and an empty box.

point 11: changing channels is on the slightly sluggish side but not as bad i i had read.

so anyway there you have some of the main points from my install so far. i'm not too bothered about the outstanding issues or if anyone strongly disagrees - this is my review. as i know they will be fixed and this is big deal for BT that they are not going to let fail based on the business model seeming pretty sound in my opinion.

hope this all helps and hasn't been too dull. i know all the info i got from here has been great so far so nice to feel like have paid some back to you lot.

bt vision - it'll get there. i'll spare any sky bashing at this point but this bosx will meet my personal needs nicely.

now back to my projector reviewing :)

oh and by the way, no i don't work for BT ;)


Standard Member
part 3

box crashed despite several restarts - not "total resets" though so will give it a go again. otherwise helpline for me tonight.

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