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Do any Freeview boxes work?

Discussion in 'Freeview & YouView' started by lostinspace, Apr 3, 2005.

  1. lostinspace

    lostinspace
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    I recently put a contribution on a thread about the problems I was having with a Sagem Freeview box-picure breakup,and not being able to put it in the same vertical plane as the TV screen.It was the second one I'd had.The first had a faulty audio output socket.
    On friday I exchanged it for a JVC model wich worked perfectly...for about 2 hours.Now it loses Sky News and Sky Sports News after about 15 seconds.Switching to another channel and back again brings the signal back,but only for about 15 seconds.
    Also,if the box hasn't been on for a while,say 2 hours,it has to be disconnected from the mains to "wake it up".
    The Pace box I had previously works OK apart from locking up on ITV3.
    Is there a box out there that works properly?
    Only good scart leads are used,the aeriel is good,and the telly is fine,so...is it time to give up on the whole damn thing?
     
  2. pjclark1

    pjclark1
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    my pacific box (£40 from asda), also loses some channels after 15 seconds, that appears to be a feature when the signal is not quite strong enough. It also only turns on when IT wants to, so pretty much the same as your box.
     
  3. senga

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    i was geting lip sync on my lcd from nokia freeview. and i run freeview from my pc and it got rid off the lip sync . nebula digi usb is the best for me.
     
  4. Bernard Barnett

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    Sony, Pioneer and Netgem iPlayer are generally reckoned to be the best boxes and they appear to be trouble-free usually. They're more expensive than what you can pick up at supermarkets. This is assuming the other elements of Freeview (decent reception area, appropriate aerial) are OK.
     
  5. extechieman

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    I can recommend both Sony and Pioneer. However, you must have good reception to avoid picture breakup.
     
  6. Nick_UK

    Nick_UK
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    I think that's true of all freeview boxes. They don't like interference, so you need to keep the aerial as far away from the sources of interference (cars, household electricals) as you can, so realistically that means a roof aerial. Also, the cable needs to be double screened (foil & braid) to prevent interference pick-up. Interference doesn't just cause picture break-up - under severe conditions it can freeze the box. The problem with digital TV is that electrical interference causes effects that are much more annoying than on analogue.

    TV ads make it look like you can hook a freeview box up to an existing analogue aerial and.... hey presto ! ...... you have digital TV. For many people in high signal areas that is the case, but for just as many it isn't.
     
  7. lostinspace

    lostinspace
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    Thanks for the quick responses,but I've been playing with it this morning.Now it loses Sky News,Sky Sports News and CBeebies,ever though all of them show a full signal on the on-screen meter.
    I think I'm just going to get my money back(if they'll refund me)and stop watching TV altogether.There's hardly anything on worth watching.
     
  8. MartinImber

    MartinImber
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    Try a SOny VTX800

    I still like the Pace Twin!!!!
     
  9. fixerman

    fixerman
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    I still like the Pace Twin!!!![/QUOTE]

    So do I and despite all the gripes I still think it is the best overall PVR. It out performs all the opposition when it comes to performance and useful features.

    I bought a Daewoo/Bush box from Tesco for the bedroom. I have to say I am very impressed. Good steady picture, clear sound, 7 day epg, channel manager to delete unwanted channels and set up favourites. Very fast on the interactive services. Seperate power supply so the box does'nt get hot. The two boxes are identical but the Daewoo version is £5 dearer.
     
  10. Paul Shirley

    Paul Shirley
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    I'll concede the iPlayer tuner is good but calling it trouble free is laughably innacurate! Mine has crashed most times I used it in the last year, my wife can crash it just changing channels.

    It also lacks the 8 day EPG and it appears Netgem have abandonned plans to implement it. It does a lot of things, few of which work well.

    Mine throws out so much RF interference it proved impossible to use the RF passthru to feed my VCR or TV and the iPlayer tuner could only tune well with the direct feed. I now have 2 aerials, nothing else worked.

    The only complaint my father has about his Sony box is his confusion over the VCR timer control. Old folk and VCR's don't seem to mix ;)
     
  11. Bernard Barnett

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    I did say usually...feedback on these forums and on Digital Spy indicates that the Netgem is well regarded. I bought mine on the recommendations here and it's performed perfectly. Yours is evidently faulty and ought to be returned.
     
  12. Paul Shirley

    Paul Shirley
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    Feedback on Netgems own forums is predominantly unhappy and all the problems I have are common. Unless you got lucky and bought a remaindered iPlayer at Makro its expensive as a DvB box and few of its other features are reliable.

    Returning it is not an option because Netgem know about all the bugs but don't think anything is actually wrong! They just aren't in any hurry to fix them.
     
  13. bigtank

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    the sony is the BOX to have
     
  14. Bernard Barnett

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    Sorry for late reply. I've had two iPlayers (first one was stolen), both bought from Netgem and both faultless. It's true I only ask it to output Freeview via component and don't bother with any of its other capabilities. I can also only speak from my own experience and reading these forums and Digital Spy - I've never looked at the Netgem forums. If as you say there are lots of unhappy owners perhaps the Sony or Pioneer would be a safer choice. I've had all three and there's certainly nothing much between them on picture quality.
     
  15. Gary D

    Gary D
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    many of the problems people are having seem to me to be because of ariels. i have a philips 1500 and it was quite bad when i first bought it (sound, picture and channel issues) had a decent digital ariel installed over a year ago and it has worked perfectly ever since.



    gary
     
  16. DRGL

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    Got a Sony & Pioneer-no problems. Picture break up on some channels only would point to an aerial IMO-is it a wideband aerial??
     
  17. kismet110

    kismet110
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    I purchased a small Pace box when FreeView first came out, this box has been used in East/West London, Herts and Surrey, no problems at all in any of these locations and excellent PQ.

    More recently I purchased a Sagem IDT64, the latest one, and it has been fine in all respects so far so maybe I've been lucky but my experiences of FreeView boxes so far has been good.

    ALI
     
  18. sdc395

    sdc395
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    My Sony (VTX-D800U) has been 100% reliable. As have the others I've used/installed in four other locations around the UK.
     
  19. eddyad

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    If you want to use the box recorder-out scart (e.g. for a DVD recorder) then the Sony will only deliver Composite unless you have a 'compatible' SmartLink recorder (usually means a recent Sony) in which case you can get s-video.
    Pioneer is out of production, but has user-selected s-video and can still be found in a number of outlets.
    Philips 500 also has user-selected s-video.
     
  20. BobD

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  21. Pat Marcus

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    I use a nokia, which I bought primarily because it has a co-ax digital output, (I had a spare posh lead that cost almost twice the freeview box) and it was regarded as the best at the time. Its running RGB into a JS tech box which converts it to Svideo and from there into my plasma. The pq is slightly better this way than converting to component via a similar js box.

    However, I really need that Svideo socket for something else. So, my question, dear experts :

    1. Do I buy the js tech box and component cables - probable total cost of £300 and accept slightly less good pq

    or, do I replace the nokia with a different freeview box, because there are now better ones on the market that output component AND have coax digital outputs and go directly into the panel, bypassing any 3rd party device ?

    Am I even correct that such boxes exist. Do they do PAL progressive ?
     
  22. Bernard Barnett

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    I believe only the Netgem iPlayer outputs component (via scart).
     
  23. MartinImber

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    I can't see SVideo being better than component unless there is a problem somewhere.

    Perhaps it is calibration time
     
  24. Pat Marcus

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    matin - I know it sounds strange but the plasma is a model primarily marketed for the US where Svideo is a preferred connection. It only came out here,last week. Ive had mine both calibrated unprofessionally and then re-calibrated very professionally by ISF King, Piers Clerk. The difference was small but it really did look slightly better on S. However, we werent using the same cable manufacturer when comparing like with like.

    So, to answer my question - only the Netgem and, only via scart. So Id still need a converter or can one get Scart to component cables ? It seems that the Netgem has received a fair bit of flack. Why is that ?
     
  25. Bernard Barnett

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    You can get a scart adapter for component cables. If you'd rather have a scart to component cable Mark Grant, a member of these forums, can make one for you - he did for me and it's the bee's knees. As far as the iPlayer's concerned, some, or even many, Netgem owners regard them as unreliable. I've had two and they've both performed perfectly: the bonus for me is that the picture quality is very very slightly superior to Sony or Pioneer.
     
  26. dvdsubtitles

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    lostinspace,

    There should be a feature on your box where you can check the signal strength.

    I have the pioneer freeview box and the same original Pace box mentioned by someone else. I've had the pace box in various configurations, on a set-top aerial, with a 20 metre cheap maplins aerial extension among others. It can dramatically affect the signal and the stability of the box. It definitely sounds like you have a signal problem. It should not cost very much to get an engineer out to check/upgrade you aerial.

    Cheers,
    Mat.
     
  27. MartinImber

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    SVId boxes are SOny Pioneer and Pace

    COmponent just the IPlayer - as to the IPlayer you love it or you hate it - no inbetween
     

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