Continue with Sky HD box or ask for Sky Q?

Fenix975

Novice Member
I've been with Sky for 17 years but out of frustration from trying to get a better deal, cancelled yesterday. I will probably go back to them before the cancellation period is up if I don't get offered a deal before then, mainly because of Sky F1 but would like to know if I have the option whether it is best to stay on my Sky HD box (which still has a box connected to it so it can connect to WiFi) or ask to have a Sky Q box (supposedly I could have one because I'm Diamond VIP but have never been offered one previously).

For information, I only have 1 TV in the house which is HD so I don't need multiroom and don't plan to buy a 4K TV at the moment. I have an Amazon FireStick to be able to access apps such as YouTube, etc. as my TV doesn't have them.

Are there any benefits therefore to go to Sky Q beyond being able to record more than 2 programmes at the same time, or should I stick with Sky HD?
 

tom 2000

Distinguished Member
It’s hardly a life changing difference but Q is the future. Having said that I would be comparing the cost before deciding.
 

Fenix975

Novice Member
Thanks a lot. I'm sure I'll be able to go up to Q in the future if I don't upgrade now - perhaps also once they've sorted out the audio issues that I've been reading about.
 

tom 2000

Distinguished Member
I was a pretty early adopter. I love it. We are a perfect family for Q. Two people with four TVs about the house. Connectivity was challenging in the early days but I love that sort of challenge.
 

maf1970

Well-known Member
Sky HD is supposed to be getting phased out. If you have an issue with HD you have to wait ages to be seen by an engineer as emphasis is on Q. I would go back to them and ask what deal would they do to make you stay. Mention how long you have been with them and use covid-19 as another reason for reducing cost.
My brother got a really good deal that included F1 for free.
 

teeveedee

Active Member
Thanks a lot. I'm sure I'll be able to go up to Q in the future if I don't upgrade now - perhaps also once they've sorted out the audio issues that I've been reading about.
I wouldn't recommend anyone get Q at the moment. The current box is a mess. The audio drop-out issue has been going on for over a year with no fix yet. They keep throwing apps onto it to try and make the one-stop shop thing appealing, but they are very unreliable and offer poorer picture quality than native TV or Firestick apps.
Stick with +HD for as long as you can if you can get a deal out of them, otherwise just use the Now TV app on the Firestick. Buy sports passes with them for the months when F1 is on - with the Boost pass too you can get it in full 1080P HD.
 

zAndy1

Distinguished Member

Yeah see I'm not sure I'd agree with that. For sure the Q box ain't perfect but it's not bad either , it's a bloody good PVR with an excellent interface. I've experienced the dropout issue but it's very rare on my box and that's supposed to be a new update to hopefully resolve it. Now TV sports passes aren't cheap and with Sky keen to move people to Sky Q it's possible to get some very good deals especially if you're a long time customer and willing to cancel (put notice in) to get the best deal. A few people recently have got the full TV package for around £55pm or £43pm ish without movies but with complete sports / uhd / netflix premium , if you can get a deal like that it's a no brainer really.
I'd see what deal you can get and go from there really
 

teeveedee

Active Member
I'd beg to differ I'm afraid. For me the ability to record 6 things at once is completely un-necessary, as is multi-screen and voice control. I'd love it if it were a 'bloody good PVR' but it just isn't. The interface is clunky & unintuitive, the fan noise is irritating and the audio drop-outs are unforgiveable.
I've switched to recording most things on a Manhattan T3-R Freeview HD PVR which really is 'bloody good.' It's silent, quicker than Q and works every time without any audio problems. Oh, and doesn't cost me anything every month.
If the Q box worked as it should then it would be a superb bit of kit, particularly if you were able to get the full package for around £50pm. But right now there are just too many things wrong with it for me.
 
If you have no plans to upgrade to 4K at the moment, personally I would be tempted to keep the HD box. Only switch to Sky Q if they offer you a good deal. The only advantage you would get from Q is the multiple tuners, which to be honest I do find very handy. The rest of it is a bit pants tbh, the only reason I keep Sky is for the F1.

Sky are actively looking to switch everyone to a Q package hence their "offer" , but once you have gone down that route they will not allow you to go back to an HD box.
 

rs101

Member
I'd beg to differ I'm afraid. For me the ability to record 6 things at once is completely un-necessary, as is multi-screen and voice control. I'd love it if it were a 'bloody good PVR' but it just isn't. The interface is clunky & unintuitive, the fan noise is irritating and the audio drop-outs are unforgiveable.
I've switched to recording most things on a Manhattan T3-R Freeview HD PVR which really is 'bloody good.' It's silent, quicker than Q and works every time without any audio problems. Oh, and doesn't cost me anything every month.
If the Q box worked as it should then it would be a superb bit of kit, particularly if you were able to get the full package for around £50pm. But right now there are just too many things wrong with it for me.
Fan noise? My v1 was about as noisy as my old Sky+HD box, but my v2 is pretty much silent. I put felt pads under the feet (it's on a wooden cabinet) and now it's inaudible.

The v2 audio dropout issue seems to be fixed in Q150, judging by my experience and the positive reports on various forums. Q160 should include a driver update which sorts out the v3 too.
 

teeveedee

Active Member
My first V2 I had a constantly ticking hard drive. That was swapped for another V2 which had a quiet hard drive but a noisy fan, even in standby. That was swapped for a V3 which has a quiet hard drive but still has fan noise, even when the box is in standby doing absolutely nothing. The old 2TB Sky+HD box I had went totally silent in standby. There's no reason why Q shouldn't be able to do the same. The Manhattan PVR is fanless and almost imperceptible in terms of sound, even when recording two things at once.
I'll give Sky a chance to fix the audio issue with Q160 but if they don't then I'm out. The rest of the family (who mainly use Q) will just have to deal with it as I'm not going to continue paying for their shoddy product.
 

Fenix975

Novice Member
Thanks for all the advice. I went on reviewmyoptions and I had an offer that I accepted. So I've got Signature + HD + full Sky Sports for £35 a month for 18 months. That's £18 less than what I was paying for Variety + HD + Sky F1 legacy so I'm very happy with this. I did it all online so the question about a Q box didn't come up. I'll stick with my Sky+ HD box for now until it either stops working or Q boxes are improved (or I get a better TV).
 

teeveedee

Active Member
Excellent. Sounds like a good deal to me. +HD will be around for a long while yet, and there are plenty of inexpensive boxes on eBay in case yours dies.
 

Not a sky fan

Active Member
Absolutely ZERO point in upgrading to Q if you have no uhd interest. It’s utterly bug ridden esp the audio, and if your used to Sky plus hd I strongly suspect q will irritate to the point you’ll curse the day q was conceived

but don’t take my word for it, have a look on skys own forum. The oracles on there will tell you it’s great or defend it to the hilt. But see how many issues repeatedly get posted on there over the years and you’ll see how poor q is. I’m sure if youve not had sky plus hd and you get q you might be fairly happy, but if your used to sky plus interface, don’t go there.

Edit…. so good decision 👍🙂😃
 

IainH99

Member
I haven't had the same bad experience of Sky Q (2TB v2 box) as some of the posters - I have no doubt they've had a major problems and I'm not trying to minimise them, but to be fair to Sky, I've had none of the issues they mention. My Sky Q is rock solid (never had to re-boot it), never had any sound problems and I didn't notice any change in fan noise levels when I moved to Sky Q.

I ran with HD TV only for my first year - I still benefitted from the elimination of recording clashes (not frequent on Sky HD - but enough to be a bit annoying) and the improved experience in a second room. I don't use the 2 rooms at the same time - so the RF link from the HD box worked OK - but the Sky Mini experience is much better and i get HD in the second room. Again never had any issues (wired LAN via non Sky router)

I did miss the Sky Plus app with the ability to use an ipad as a remote control, changing channels etc. on the Sky HD box

Again, I'm not casting any doubt on some of the other comments - maybe I just got lucky, maybe they got unlucky - although there appear to be quite a few "unlucky" people out there.

That's jinxed it - bound to fire up my Sky Q tonight, and get multiple crashes and sound drop outs
 

teeveedee

Active Member
It's always good to hear of someone who has had a trouble-free Q experience @IainH99 - I wish I was in the same boat!
It's the inconsistency of Q that is its biggest failing in my view. There are now too many box variants out there, each with their own quirks, some of which will work better with some domestic set-ups than others. It just seems completely random as to whether you'll get a stable system or not and it shouldn't be that way.
My old 2TB Sky+ HD box was rock solid and worked flawlessly for years - it did exactly what it was designed to do and did it very well.
Sky Q on the other hand is a system that seems to have started out quite well, and made a decent attempt at advancing the technology to create a new wireless multi-screen experience, but has, over time, become a mess as they attempt to add more and more functionality. You only need to look at the numbers of threads on the Sky Community forums to see the difference in volume of issues between the systems. Sky Q currently has over 96,000 threads, whereas Sky+ has just over 15,400.
Personally, I got Q because I wanted access to UHD content and the ability to record more than two things at once, which at a base level should be two things the box should be able do easily. Granted, it does, but the random audio drop-outs over the past 9 months when playing anything back have been so infuriating that I now just don't bother recording or downloading anything on Q, I use it only to watch live TV. I rely on my Manhattan T3-R Freeview HD recorder for terrestrial channel recordings (an excellent PVR) and Apple TV and Firestick for all other content.
I've had multiple V2 & V3 Q box swaps to try and fix the variety of issues I've experienced - from noisy hard drives to faulty ethernet ports to sound issues, but none of them have been as stable as the old Sky +HD box.
I think the flaws in the system probably affect people differently. I'm pretty convinced that the sound drop-outs affect the vast majority of people with the V3 Q box, and a great many of them (myself included) grumble about them a lot on the Sky Community forums. But an even greater number of them just live with them, don't notice them, or aren't bothered by them because they don't happen very often or they mainly watch live TV (which is less affected).
It's not acceptable in my view for Sky to continue to offer the Q service when they know that their hardware has this fault. They're relying entirely on those millions of people who aren't bothered enough by sound drop-outs to complain, and will continue to supply their sub-standard service to the masses and happily take their money.
 

rs101

Member
There's a definite sound issue with the V3 box, which is due to be addressed in the Q160 update, coming soon (hopefully) to those who signed up to the early update offer on the Sky forum. Whether it fixes everything is anyone's guess, but Sky seem pretty confident it'll address the core problem. Seems to be mainly a low level driver update from the chipset manufacturer.

Q150 had some fixes for dropouts on playback, which seem to have been pretty successful, based on feedback from V2 users on their forum - personally, I've not had any issues on my V2 box since the update.

Maybe I've been lucky, but I've had Q since they started non-Sky broadband installs. First 6 months or so wasn't great - it was obviously released too early - but it's been very stable for me. Better than my Sky+HD box which needed rebooting every few weeks to get red button services working.

Mine are all wired via ethernet, mainly because I already had that in place.

Comparing forum post numbers is a pretty irrelevant comparison, given that the newest Sky+HD box design is 11 years old, there haven't been any major software updates for years and it's now used by well under half the Sky customer base. So not surprising that there aren't many issues reported any more.

Yes there are problems with Q and changes we'd all like (probably all different things :) ) but I personally think it's a massive improvement over the old platforms.
 

tom 2000

Distinguished Member
I hard wired all mine about three years ago and it has been good. The only audio drop outs were the broadcast variety with UHD football. However a mini has been giving the blue screen a few times lately. The message suggests main box networking. It fixes by a power cycle of the mini.
 

Not a sky fan

Active Member
There's a definite sound issue with the V3 box, which is due to be addressed in the Q160 update, coming soon (hopefully) to those who signed up to the early update offer on the Sky forum. Whether it fixes everything is anyone's guess, but Sky seem pretty confident it'll address the core problem. Seems to be mainly a low level driver update from the chipset manufacturer.

Q150 had some fixes for dropouts on playback, which seem to have been pretty successful, based on feedback from V2 users on their forum - personally, I've not had any issues on my V2 box since the update.

Maybe I've been lucky, but I've had Q since they started non-Sky broadband installs. First 6 months or so wasn't great - it was obviously released too early - but it's been very stable for me. Better than my Sky+HD box which needed rebooting every few weeks to get red button services working.

Mine are all wired via ethernet, mainly because I already had that in place.

Comparing forum post numbers is a pretty irrelevant comparison, given that the newest Sky+HD box design is 11 years old, there haven't been any major software updates for years and it's now used by well under half the Sky customer base. So not surprising that there aren't many issues reported any more.

Yes there are problems with Q and changes we'd all like (probably all different things :) ) but I personally think it's a massive improvement over the old platforms.
If it had been implemented in a mature, adult, professional fashion, it could of been absolutely fantastic, given the advancements made in the sector with sky plus even though they nicked another poorly implemented idea from TiVo.

Q is utterly disappointing, especially when you consider what was promised at launch and the farcical management of the incremental failures of each boasted feature that was either never going to work in a million years, like using extender style connections between boxes for internet, or sky simply didn’t have the knowledge to make work, like the touch remote that could of worked well but not under skys watch. Or the sales dept sticking their nose in and denying the use of the boxes as WiFi hotspots for all except sky bb customers. I mean how short sited us that ? !

it really has exposed Skys arrogance and technical limitations in equal measure

being fair some of the issues are industry wide, like lip sync register to video being non existent. But the appalling lack of a remotely usable lip sync adjustment setting is unforgivable for me.

but what’s worse is people like you popping up saying it’s ok. It’s not that bad. They are working on this or that. Defending the indefensible basically, and people stumble into these things having signed up to a contract costing north of £400 a year only to find a RAFT of unacceptable faults sky and everyone else know all too well and refuse to accept exist or fix !

you should be utterly ashamed
 

logiciel

Moderator
Q works fine for me, though it’s used less and less often these days.
Does it, or any satellite operation, have a future?
 

Not a sky fan

Active Member
Q works fine for me, though it’s used less and less often these days.
Does it, or any satellite operation, have a future?
The fact it works fine for you is hardly relevant in the face of numerous topics 100’s of pages long, some of which sky have closed claiming campaigning and trolling by its own customers on its own forum. The point is that so many customers DO have problems. One would hope that there are some sky q customers somewhere that don’t have issues. Wouldn’t one?

And honestly yes I think there is. As, presumably bb based tv services are considered the next step…? Yet any major event I see in uhd of any flavour that’s available to stream is falling flat on its face compared to any demo version on the likes of iPlayer beta. It appears to be simply impossible to broadcast a live event( cup final was the last one I saw,) in uhd above any quality level better than standard def. logistically it must, I guess, be astronomically expensive and demand similar levels of bandwidth. …. Or hdr hybrid log gamma compression levels need further development maybe, or whatever the technical term is.
Whatever, from what I read, sky have put bb based tv as a replacement for satellite on hold. I guess that’s the biggest clue. If it’s true of course 🤷🏻‍♂️
 

paulguk

Active Member
I am about to upgrade to Sky Q myself. I have been reading in this thread about audio drop outs. Can anyone tell me if it is just on HDMI or is it on Toslink as well. I will be using the Toslink output to my AV processor.
 

rs101

Member
I am about to upgrade to Sky Q myself. I have been reading in this thread about audio drop outs. Can anyone tell me if it is just on HDMI or is it on Toslink as well. I will be using the Toslink output to my AV processor.
Q160 (the release now rolling out) seems to fix this for most users.
 

teeveedee

Active Member
I am about to upgrade to Sky Q myself. I have been reading in this thread about audio drop outs. Can anyone tell me if it is just on HDMI or is it on Toslink as well. I will be using the Toslink output to my AV processor.
The drop-outs occurred on both HDMI and optical but have been fixed (for me at least) with the new Q160 software which has just started rolling out to all Q boxes.
 

RicksonGracie1972

Distinguished Member
I used to get audio drop outs when using the in built apps on my tv for Netflix and Amazon but watching through the Sky Q app its fine.
That said, I do notice an improvement in sound and pic quality when watching Netflix and Amazon over Sky.
 

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