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Need Homemade Sky+ Please!

Chrispy2

Standard Member
Hi all,

I recently had Sky installed in my new place, but could only have the standard Sky box as opposed to Sky+ as I couldn't have my own dish put up, instead we had to take a feed from my landlords dish. Anyway, all works lovely, good signal, but obviously no recording facility at present, which is a problem when the "better" half misses Strictly Come Dancing!

So I have a Sony KDL-32D3000, an Amstrad Sky Box, a PS3 and a Yamaha Amp with 5.1 Tannoy Speakers. PlayTV looks to be a no go, so I am guessing I need a DVD/HDD drive combo to be able to record Sky (accept an external source?), although this will mean I will have to watch that channel being recorded on Sky or the built in freeview tuner on the TV.

What device do you recommend? I am looking for 160GB or more of space and not to spend much over £200 (the less the better these days!).

Thanks in advance!
 

Broadz

Distinguished Member
You can run Sky+ off a single input. Same restrictions as before - you can only record the channel you are watching/tuned to - but don't assume that only a single input stops you from getting a Sky+ box. I ran Sky+ from a single input for three years.
 

Chrispy2

Standard Member
Oh something naughty! I don't fancy paying Sky to upgrade now! Especially as I could have had the thing free through the friends and family thing! The dam person on the phone told me I couldn't have Sky+. This was however the same person who told me I couldn't run a feed from the landlord's dish. Why did I not listen to my head, instead of my ears! Grrr. Thanks for the reply anyway, helpful to know. Do you have any solutions at all?
 

Broadz

Distinguished Member
You don't have to buy a Sky+ box from Sky. They're available on ebay from £30 up to £70. Yes, it means buying a box which you could have had for free, but a Sky+ box is far cheaper to buy than a DVD recorder with hard drive. And you can then sell your Sky box on ebay to go some way towards paying for it - though whether you will get more than a fiver for a standard Sky box I have my doubts.
 

Chrispy2

Standard Member
Did the guide, planner, record, rewind, pause functions all work as normal (other than only being able to record/watch one sky channel)? I have read a few places that they didn't record the programs they were supposed to and that sometimes they did not work properly when connected to just the one feed, which scares me if I am going to lay out maybe £50 for something which might not work! Is it a case of plug in, put your viewing card in and go, or is it more complex? Thank you!
 

ramjet

Banned
I believe there was a workaround to make it use the single input , otherwise it may try to use the second input which isnt in use and this will be what you have heard about

going back to post 1

you could just stick with the sky box you have now ( like I do with a pace ) and use something like a sony 770 ( 120 gig hdd ) or a sony 870 ( 160 gig ) , set the autoview and series link etc on the sky box and record on the dvdr from line 1 input using the rgb over scart

its simple , uses the existing sky box and gives you a dvdr with pvr functions , divx playback , series link , freeview and analogue recording and recording from sky direct to the internal hdd , editing on the hdd and dub to dvd
well , thats all I have to do with mine :)

you can pick up the sony 770 for under a hundred if you look around like I did , and it can have its hdd upgraded fairly easily using a remote control like the harmony , to up to 1TB

but its your choice
 

Chrispy2

Standard Member
Thanks all!

Ramjet,

Is there a huge difference between the Sony rdr-hxd870 and 890, other than the price? I am guessing there is and that the 890 is prehaps older. However, would it still do what I want it to do, ie: record either a freeview or Sky channel, while we watch another one either on the in built freeview tuner on my D3000, or on the Sky box if we are recording from the in built freeview tuner on the DVD HDD recorder?

Thank you very much for your help!
 

ramjet

Banned
I dont think there is any real difference , apart from maybe power consumption , but that sort of question should go to sony and not me m8

I havent owned any x90 recorder , as mine are all x70 models , and the only differences there are the hdd sizes on these x70 and x90 ranges

the x90 range replace the x70 range , so the 890 is this years model and is newer than the 870 it replaced


as for these recorders you would use the recorder for recording from the skybox and watch say freeview on the tv using its inbuilt tuner

or you use the recorder to record say freeview , and watch sky on the tv

so more or less as you thought

you can use the recorder to watch a previous recording even when its busy actually recording something else , or watch a dvd instead , or chase play the recording it is making
 
M

Mins21

Guest
I've had my HXD870 for a year now and havent had the chance (or guts!) to wire it up til now!

Couple of questions:

Can I run the HDMI cable from the recorder to the TV instead of SCART?

So I currently should have:

Sky box (normal) to HDD recorder = SCART
HDD Recorder to TV = SCART OR HDMI (but HDMI useful for DVD obviously (I have Full HD Sony LCD TV)

I couldnt watch Sky last night while recording Freeview on my recorder, so I guess this would be solved by:
Sky Box to TV = SCART (?)

:suicide:

Aerial Connections are as follows:
Wall to Sky box in
Sky box out to HDD recorder in (analogue)
HDD recorder analogue out to HDD digital in
HDD Digital out to TV in

So all seems to work ok except I couldnt watch Sky while recording Heroes from Freeview last night. Annoying.

Also in the manual it suggests that I can control my Sky box and effectively control it and record from it using a special remote thingie - where can I get one of those from - it didn;t come with my HDD recorder unit, and Sony can't seem to help?!

Help much appreciated...:lease:

thanks!
 

ramjet

Banned
you should have got a G-LINK adapter ( page 17 ) with it to control the sky box , not sure if they are sold separately , especially as you say sony cannot help , so I would try e bay or similar for one off a faulty unit maybe ?

read this too _http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=472259

or this _http://www.partmaster.co.uk/cgi-bin/product.pl?PID=1402363 on a google search



and you should really connect it up differently too

aerial wall socket should go to digital aerial input in the middle of the sony , then out of there to sky box in , rf1 from sky box out to analogue aerial in on the left hand side of the sony looking from the rear , and out from there to the tv ( or to a vcr and then to tv )

this is so the sony gets the first dibs at the incoming digital freeview signals , then it goes over to the sky box to pick up the sky analogue channel output , then back to the sony for feeding its analogue tuner , then to the tv



and the scarts are ( using 21 pin fully wired scarts ) :_

sky box TV out to line 1 input on the sony , line 3 output to the tv

set the sky box and sony to 16:9 widescreen and rgb where necessary

if you use hdmi you will lose the passthrough of rgb from scart to scart , and the unit would have to be switched on and on line 1 for you to see the sky box.

you can use the composite out from the sony ( yellow/red/white) for passthrough to the tv from line 1 scart

the alternative is connect another scart from the sky box vcr out to the tv and use this as a composite feed

as for using the sky box etc , you would need to use the guideplus epg and not the digital epg , and use itv on analogue or eurosport on sky for getting the guides , and use the scart _ g-link for the switching

the alternative is to use the sky planner and set it to autoview ( and maybe series link too ) in the sky menu so the sky box switches itself using its own epg and planner , then set the timer manually to record from line 1 on the sony. which is exactly how I do it as my sky box is in the loft and nowhere near my sony recorders
 
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Broadz

Distinguished Member
So all seems to work ok except I couldnt watch Sky while recording Heroes from Freeview last night. Annoying.

Sky provides two scarts out, 2 RF out and s-video out. Sky HD provides all that plus HDMI out (and with an older Sky HD box component out).

So, as long as your TV will accept scart, RF, s-video, HDMI or component on top of everything else that you have plugged in, there is no reason why you wouldn't be able to connect your Sky box to your TV and watch it, regardless of what other boxes are doing in terms of recording each other. Lets face it, if you are wanting to watch Sky then you aren't wanting to watch a DVD - so as a temporary fix you could connect your Sky box via scart to the scart socket currently taken up by your DVD player if all else fails.
 
M

Mins21

Guest
you should have got a G-LINK adapter ( page 17 ) with it to control the sky box , not sure if they are sold separately , especially as you say sony cannot help , so I would try e bay or similar for one off a faulty unit maybe ?

read this too _http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=472259



and you should really connect it up differently too

aerial wall socket should go to digital aerial input in the middle of the sony , then out of there to sky box in , rf1 from sky box out to analogue aerial in on the left hand side of the sony looking from the rear , and out from there to the tv ( or to a vcr and then to tv )

this is so the sony gets the first dibs at the incoming digital freeview signals , then it goes over to the sky box to pick up the sky analogue channel output , then back to the sony for feeding its analogue tuner , then to the tv



and the scarts are ( using 21 pin fully wired scarts ) :_

sky box TV out to line 1 input on the sony , line 3 output to the tv

set the sky box and sony to 16:9 widescreen and rgb where necessary

if you use hdmi you will lose the passthrough of rgb from scart to scart , and the unit would have to be switched on and on line 1 for you to see the sky box.

you can use the composite out from the sony ( yellow/red/white) for passthrough to the tv from line 1 scart

the alternative is connect another scart from the sky box vcr out to the tv and use this as a composite feed

as for using the sky box etc , you would need to use the guideplus epg and not the digital epg , and use itv on analogue or eurosport on sky for getting the guides , and use the scart _ g-link for the switching

the alternative is to use the sky planner and set it to autoview ( and maybe series link too ) in the sky menu so the sky box switches itself using its own epg and planner , then set the timer manually to record from line 1 on the sony. which is exactly how I do it as my sky box is in the loft and nowhere near my sony recorders

I see - will have to get a g-link adapter then as this would allow me to record from sky using series link etc if need be...or generally record a program, say tomorrow, at 2pm on a SKy channel...

Still a wee bit confused on the SCART connections. Will the Recorder not output recordings via HDMI to the TV, or is HDMI used for DVD only? (Want to take advantage of the upscaling).

I also want to add my old VCR in the mix as well but not for recording - just playback and the odd recording to DVD from VHS...

Can someone please suggest a connection method for all this equipment for me? Please?!?!

So in summary I have:

Full HD LCD TV
Sony DVD/HDD Recorder (HXD870)
Old JVC VHS Recorder; and
Sky box (bog standard)

thanks!!!!
 

ramjet

Banned
I have added some extra links regarding the g-link in case you want to buy one or to make your own using cheap parts from [email protected] , so check that post again


as for adding a vcr , add it after the sky box and before you add in the analogue inputs of the sony , and scart it to the tv as well

so its

aerial socket , digital in of the sony , sky box , vcr , analogue in of the sony , tv preferably in that order

hdmi switches off the line 3 scart , so you cannot have both in use , which is why I suggested using composite out from the sony if using the hdmi as well , as this allows both to work , although the composite out would be the same as the sky box vcr out to the tv

the hdmi will upscale any source , so yes you can use it instead of scart , but the unit needs to be switched on and using the chosen input ( the internal tuner , line 1 or line 2 ), and you cannot use scart out if using hdmi out

if your vcr has 2 scarts with passthrough , you can cable scart from vcr out of the sky box to the vcr input scart , and the tv output scart of the vcr to the tv , allowing sky to pass through it when its not in use , allowing alternative viewing

the more you add , the more complicated it gets :)

lastly , you dont need the glink at all if you use the sky planner , red button for autoview , and green button for series link as I said earlier , I do this all the time and never use a g-link


_________________________________________________________

this is a copy and paste of the home made g-link from that forum



I made one up myself and it works ok. All the components are available at Maplin Electronics.
It does however require soldering skills, solder and a soldering iron.

A Plastic 3.5mm Mono Jack Plug
A mono 3.5mm jack plug with a plastic barrel and moulded cable strain relief. Only £0.89 Order Code: HF80B

An infra red emitting diode _http://www.maplin.co.uk/module.aspx?ModuleNo=2259&doy=26m1
SFH409 GaAs Infrared Emitting Diode only £0.79 Order Code: CY84F

and some cable , eg a metre of Miniature Single-Core Lapped Screen only £0.49 Order Code: XR15R

The tip of the jack is positive
so ensure the anode of the infra red emitting diode is also soldered to the positive -
best use the centre conductor of the wire for this.

I used self amalgamating tape _www.maplin.co.uk

for maintaining electrical isolation after construction and to provide a sheath for the whole active end of the "G-link".

Blue tack and a document clip holt the G-link in place.
 
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M

Mins21

Guest
I have added some extra links regarding the g-link in case you want to buy one or to make your own using cheap parts from [email protected] , so check that post again


as for adding a vcr , add it after the sky box and before you add in the analogue inputs of the sony , and scart it to the tv as well

so its

aerial socket , digital in of the sony , sky box , vcr , analogue in of the sony , tv preferably in that order

hdmi switches off the line 3 scart , so you cannot have both in use , which is why I suggested using composite out from the sony if using the hdmi as well , as this allows both to work , although the composite out would be the same as the sky box vcr out to the tv

the hdmi will upscale any source , so yes you can use it instead of scart , but the unit needs to be switched on and using the chosen input ( the internal tuner , line 1 or line 2 ), and you cannot use scart out if using hdmi out

if your vcr has 2 scarts with passthrough , you can cable scart from vcr out of the sky box to the vcr input scart , and the tv output scart of the vcr to the tv , allowing sky to pass through it when its not in use , allowing alternative viewing

the more you add , the more complicated it gets :)

lastly , you dont need the glink at all if you use the sky planner , red button for autoview , and green button for series link as I said earlier , I do this all the time and never use a g-link


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

So basically you are saying that HDMI is fine from Sony unit to TV, BUT I will need to have the Unit on if I want to watch a VHS tape through my video etc?

So to avoid having to switch on the unit when watching a VHS for example, its better to connect up composite video and audio to the TV as well?

Aerial connection noted and understood...

Video signal connections as follows:

Sky box out to VCR in (SCART)
VCR out to HDD unit in (SCART)
HDD Unit out to TV via (Composite)
Sky Box to TV (SCART) or is this one the same as having composite from HDD to TV...i.e allowing me to watch Sky while recording Freeview...

Phew...! Sheesh!

Please confirm this is correct

Also is THIS good for g-link and controlling my sky box through guildeplus etc?!

God this is confusing.

:rolleyes:
 

ramjet

Banned
firstly , that ir adapter doesnt seem right for this job with your sony , it may work , it may not , I have no idea , but I would say...NOT (if asked)

as for your connections , if you have enough scart inputs on your tv then I would connect the sky box vcr out to the vcr in , and the vcr out to the tv to a spare scart tv socket . I wouldnt have too many in one daisy chain the way you have it listed. and this way you can watch a tape no matter what the sony is doing or not doing , on or not on etc


and to use the HDMI the sony would have to be ON , no question about it


if you leave things as you listed them , you need that extra composite from sony to tv so you get a passthrough when the sony is in standby ( scart input on line 1 passed through to composite out direct to the tv )


I would do it like this

Sky box VCR scart out to VCR input (SCART)
VCR output to TV unit in (SCART)

AND

Sky box TV scart out to SONY LINE 1 scart in (SCART - RGB)
SONY composite out to TV unit in (COMPOSITE - yellow/red/white)

SONY HDMI out to TV unit in (HDMI)


this lets you get 2 sky feeds into the tv , and a direct vcr input to the tv for watching a tape , and an rgb to composite passthrough of sky , and HDMI when the unit is switched on

and I did warn you it was complicated , but if you want so many devices wired up then its bound to be complicated , especially as you added the vcr into the system too, but it can be done with my instructions above
 
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M

Mins21

Guest
firstly , that ir adapter doesnt seem right for this job with your sony , it may work , it may not , I have no idea , but I would say...NOT (if asked)

as for your connections , if you have enough scart inputs on your tv then I would connect the sky box vcr out to the vcr in , and the vcr out to the tv to a spare scart tv socket . I wouldnt have too many in one daisy chain the way you have it listed. and this way you can watch a tape no matter what the sony is doing or not doing , on or not on etc


and to use the HDMI the sony would have to be ON , no question about it


if you leave things as you listed them , you need that extra composite from sony to tv so you get a passthrough when the sony is in standby ( scart input on line 1 passed through to composite out direct to the tv )


I would do it like this

Sky box VCR scart out to VCR input (SCART)
VCR output to TV unit in (SCART)

AND

Sky box TV scart out to SONY LINE 1 scart in (SCART - RGB)
SONY composite out to TV unit in (COMPOSITE - yellow/red/white)

SONY HDMI out to TV unit in (HDMI)


this lets you get 2 sky feeds into the tv , and a direct vcr input to the tv for watching a tape , and an rgb to composite passthrough of sky , and HDMI when the unit is switched on

and I did warn you it was complicated , but if you want so many devices wired up then its bound to be complicated , especially as you added the vcr into the system too, but it can be done with my instructions above

Sounds good Ramjet - I will connect up this way and see how it goes...

I Wonder if I can record VHS to DVD this way...I'll save that problem for another day!!!

Thanks immensely for your help!
 

ramjet

Banned
vhs to dvd will require a connection from the vcr direct to the sony , whereas my recommendations are for everyday viewing and not for that task

however , its easy to sort it out , as if you used a composite lead from the vcr composite out ( or the vcr scart out using an adapter ) to the line 2 inputs on the front of the sony and switch to line 2 so you press play on the vcr and record on the sony

an alternative if you have another vcr is just connect composite out from the vcr to line 2 on the front of the sony. you can also get adapters that are scart to composite , and I would use a switched adapter for this and a yellow/red/white composite lead , or I would use a scart to composite lead instead

so the idea is a composite out from a spare vcr into the line 2 on the sony , select line 2 so you can see what is being played , and record to hdd , edit , then dub to a dvd

so yes you can connect the current vcr to the sony , or a spare vcr , to the sony line 2 input (or to line 1 using scart if you wished to)
 
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Chrispy2

Standard Member
Is the G-Link accessory necessary in order to set the timer to record a Sky channel when you are not going to be about or can you just connect via scart and programme autoview on the Sky EPG? Sorry, I'm not too clear on how the setting of the recorder works. I know obviously that you can hit the record button, but if you are not about and want to record the external source (Sky), how do you go about that?

Thank you! The Sony rdr-hxd890 looks a bargain on amazon at £166!
 

ramjet

Banned
Is the G-Link accessory necessary in order to set the timer to record a Sky channel when you are not going to be about or can you just connect via scart and programme autoview on the Sky EPG? Sorry, I'm not too clear on how the setting of the recorder works. I know obviously that you can hit the record button, but if you are not about and want to record the external source (Sky), how do you go about that?

Thank you! The Sony rdr-hxd890 looks a bargain on amazon at £166!

if you set the sky box planner to do the changeover for you , then the recorder does not need to do it , so does not need g-link , or scart either if it comes to that ( but scart is best of course )

so using the sky epg and sky planner it can be set on the sky box itself

then you just set the sony to record the sky channel on scart or rf at the appropriate time and date ( usually this will be line 1 ) , using manual timer , the same way as you would when using an older vcr
 

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