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What Freesat box?

:hiya: Hi all,

I am looking to purchase a Freesat box, and don't currently have anything HD, i have a standard XGA projector, so is it worth my while investing £40 in a standard, (if so please suggest which model/make) or £100 more to future-proof myself?

please help as i'm a n00b to all this :lease:
 

Fred Smith

Well-known Member
Have not seen any Freesat boxes around £40, most are around £60. Of which Alba, Bush and Grundig are all the same box made for Alba, different badges.

If you have a requirement for HD then the Humax is generally considered to be the best. £100 gets the Goodmans HD box or £150 the Humax, Grundig or Metronic HD boxes. Again the Goodmans and Grundig HD box are the same so a £50 saving if you go for the Gooodmans. Metronic HD has only recently been released so it's track record it not yet known.

Prices based on Argos and Maplin.
 
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pet2000

Standard Member
Have you got a dish installed? If not, the best deal is the Sky box with installation for £73.50 from Argos, Currys, Comet, etc. You get the freesat box, the dish, 3 months Sky package (free 3 months, then £19.50 per month) complete with installation. If you cancel the Sky package before the 3 months are up, you don't pay anything extra.

I was lucky and had a friendly installer who gave me a quad LNB on the dish for free when I asked (normally you get a single LNB unless you subscribe to Sky plus+). I can now have either 2 freesat boxes with PVRs (twin tuners) or 4 single freesat boxes connected to my dish, all in different rooms.

While the Sky box displays no program number (just a glaring 'SKY' in front - which I covered up with a piece of black tape), the remote control is the best I have used and better than my Sony TV remote (I know, this is subjective). The Sky remote will also operate your TV volume and on/off (if compatible, e.g. Sony).

I believe this deal is worth at least double the cost if you need a dish and installation.

BTW, the product is called 'Sky, Pay Once, Watch Forever'. You will receive the same free channels you would receive with a standard freesat box (e.g. Alba, Humax) plus some additional free channels from Sky.
 
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pdoherty76

Active Member
Have you got a dish installed? If not, the best deal is the Sky box with installation for £73.50 from Argos, Currys, Comet, etc. You get the freesat box, the dish, 3 months Sky package (free 3 months, then £19.50 per month) complete with installation. If you cancel the Sky package before the 3 months are up, you don't pay anything extra.

I was lucky and had a friendly installer who gave me a quad LNB on the dish for free when I asked (normally you get a single LNB unless you subscribe to Sky plus+). I can now have either 2 freesat boxes with PVRs (twin tuners) or 4 single freesat boxes connected to my dish, all in different rooms.

While the Sky box displays no program number (just a glaring 'SKY' in front - which I covered up with a piece of black tape), the remote control is the best I have used and better than my Sony TV remote (I know, this is subjective). The Sky remote will also operate your TV volume and on/off (if compatible, e.g. Sony).

I believe this deal is worth at least double the cost if you need a dish and installation.

BTW, the product is called 'Sky, Pay Once, Watch Forever'. You will receive the same free channels you would receive with a standard freesat box (e.g. Alba, Humax) plus some additional free channels from Sky.


He wasn't asking about a SKY box, he wants a freesat box.
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
He wasn't asking about a SKY box, he wants a freesat box.

There's not much difference.

SD Sky box get's you fiver and five us

HD Box Sky gets you CH4 HD Freesat get's you ITV HD (there's much more HD content on CH4 HD
 

sokratesagogo

Standard Member
....You get the freesat box, the dish, 3 months Sky package (free 3 months, then £19.50 per month) complete with installation. If you cancel the Sky package before the 3 months are up, you don't pay anything extra.


Is it correct that if you go for the SKY HD version of this that the PVR functionality stops after the free trial ends?
 

Bachstrad

Well-known Member
Is it correct that if you go for the SKY HD version of this that the PVR functionality stops after the free trial ends?

Yes, that's right. You need a minimum basic Sky subscription to have PVR functionallity.

ATB

Max
 

pet2000

Standard Member
Is it correct that if you go for the SKY HD version of this that the PVR functionality stops after the free trial ends?

Please bare in mind, the offer I quoted above is only for the SD box (NOT HD).

The deciding factor for me was that the dish installation was included in the price of £73.50. Even if you throw away the Sky box and buy and connect a HD freesat box yourself, you haven't paid much more than a standard installation of the dish would have cost you through a local installer.

Perhaps I should quickly recap what is needed for watching free digital tv:

1. Freeview
Terrestrial broadcast, you need a Freeview Box and (probably) an outside aerial.

2. Freesat SD (standard definition)
Broadcast from Astra satellite 28 deg. You need a dish and a standard Freesat Box.

3. FreeSky (standard definition) - the real alternative to Freesat SD
Broadcast from Astra satellite 28 deg. You need a dish anda standard Sky Box with freeview card (included when purchased new).

4. Freesat HD (high definition)
Broadcast from Astra 28 deg. You need a dish and a Freesat HD box.


The channel line-up between those system keeps changing. I will just list the main channels you get EXTRA on each system and the main channels which are MISSING from each system to date (22/01/2009). All 4 systems will receive all BBC, all ITV, Channel 4, E4, More 4 and Channel 5.

1. Freeview
Extra channels compared to Freesat: Dave, Fiver, Five US, Virgin 1

2. Freesat SD (standard definition)
Freesat SD missing channels: Dave, Virgin 1, Fiver or Five US

3. FreeSky (standard definition)
FreeSky missing channels: Dave, Virgin 1 (but you get Fiver and Five US). You also get most channels with +1 feature, which means the program is broadcast twice, +1 is one hour later, in case you have missed it.

4. Freesat HD (high definition)
Same line-up as (2.) Freesat SD (standard definition) plus BBC HD and ITV HD (more to come).

Overall, I think the best channel line-up for standard definition at the moment is with FreeSky. This is the package the offer I mentioned above refers to.

I am not working for Sky and I don't want to be responsible if you make the wrong decision. Please check the details yourself before you decide on a package to make sure you get the right one for your needs.
 
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dmellis

Standard Member
I have purchased the freesat from sky which is great value! also the sky engineer fitted a quad lnb when asked.

I have also replaced the box to a sky HD, hoping I could use the free HD channels and hard drive for recording tv.

The Freesat HD works fine, but I cannot use the Hard disk on the box as the message appears stating I need to upgrade! any ideas? if not what would be the cheapest package to use the hard drive or SKY + function?

any help would be appreciated:confused::lease:
 

pet2000

Standard Member
I have purchased the freesat from sky which is great value! also the sky engineer fitted a quad lnb when asked.

I have also replaced the box to a sky HD, hoping I could use the free HD channels and hard drive for recording tv.

The Freesat HD works fine, but I cannot use the Hard disk on the box as the message appears stating I need to upgrade! any ideas? if not what would be the cheapest package to use the hard drive or SKY + function?

any help would be appreciated:confused::lease:

I am not am expert on HD since everything I have is SD. As far as I understand you can buy a Freesat HD box with built-in pvr (for recording onto hard disc and reply, etc). You will receive BBC and ITV HD and C4 HD will come soon (is HD really so much better that it warrant the hassle?). I don't think you can use the Sky+ box without a payment to Sky. I am not clear whether you have a Sky HD box or a Freesat HD box because you mention both. There is a big difference.

You say you have a quad LNB, which means you can connect a Humax HD box with pvr to two exits of your dish (and still keep your Sky box connected as well).

Or, you could just connect a twin tuner SD box with pvr to two of you connectors, or record from your SD Sky box onto a DVD recorder through the scrart socket.

Any combinations is possible once you have the quad LNB.
 

dmellis

Standard Member
Yes its the sky + HD Box, when I read the spec for the box it mentioned 140GB for sky channels and 160GB for private user, what I didn`t realise is that neither seems accessible without a subscription to sky, just wondered if this was the only way to access this hard drive?

Sometimes people have hardware work arounds etc. I have a Sony 160 GB Hard drive / DVD but this is constantly filling up. Don't really want to add any more boxes at this time.

Does anyone know how much sky would charge to use the sky plus? do you need to purchase the basic package?

any ideas folks! :rolleyes:
 

GasDad

Remembered (1964-2012)
Does anyone know how much sky would charge to use the sky plus? do you need to purchase the basic package?

any ideas folks! :rolleyes:

You need to buy either the Basic package (£17 a month) or simply pay for the sky plus (£10 a month). Most people consider the 17 quid represents better value. This applies to both Sky HD and Sky+ boxes.

Earlier in the thread, someone suggested that C4 HD would be coming to FreeSat - that seems even less likely now given C4's financial situation. AIUI Sky subsidize the transponder costs etc for C4 out of the HD sub.
 

dmellis

Standard Member
You need to buy either the Basic package (£17 a month) or simply pay for the sky plus (£10 a month). Most people consider the 17 quid represents better value. This applies to both Sky HD and Sky+ boxes.

Earlier in the thread, someone suggested that C4 HD would be coming to FreeSat - that seems even less likely now given C4's financial situation. AIUI Sky subsidize the transponder costs etc for C4 out of the HD sub.

With the sky freesat trial 4 months free sky basic variety package, I can recieve BBC HD / Ch 4 HD / ITV HD / LUXE. If I cancel the trial, would I then lose CH4 HD due to the sky subsidy, or would that still be accessible, when out of a contract?
 

GasDad

Remembered (1964-2012)
With the sky freesat trial 4 months free sky basic variety package, I can recieve BBC HD / Ch 4 HD / ITV HD / LUXE. If I cancel the trial, would I then lose CH4 HD due to the sky subsidy, or would that still be accessible, when out of a contract?

You don't get ITV HD at all - that is only available on FreeSat

Ch4 HD will still be available after the end of your subscription - but as noted above you won't be able to record / live pause etc.
 

Bachstrad

Well-known Member
With the sky freesat trial 4 months free sky basic variety package, I can recieve BBC HD / Ch 4 HD / ITV HD / LUXE. If I cancel the trial, would I then lose CH4 HD due to the sky subsidy, or would that still be accessible, when out of a contract?

If you cancel the HD subscription after the trial you will still be able to view CH4 HD. If you cancel the Sky subscription completely then you will be unable to use the PVR functions of the Sky+ HD box. I'm assuming that you're talking about sourcing the HD box via the Tesco offer?

ATB

Max
 

pet2000

Standard Member
Can anyone comment if HD is much better than SD on a 32" LCD TV. I don't have any Blu-ray and would only want to watch TV. Is it worth buying a HD box just for watching TV? Thanks.
 
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Stiggy

Distinguished Member
Can anyone comment if HD is much better than SD on a 32" LCD TV. I don't have any Blu-ray and would only want to watch TV. Is it worth buying a HD box just for watching TV? Thanks.
It would depend on how good your TV is and how close you sit to it!

However, watching football on ITV1 would be much better in HD than SD.
 

dmellis

Standard Member
You don't get ITV HD at all - that is only available on FreeSat

Ch4 HD will still be available after the end of your subscription - but as noted above you won't be able to record / live pause etc.

So Sky offer freeview channels which include CH4 which is not accessible by freesat, and if I changed the box to freesat then I would recieve ITV1 HD and not CH4 right? then as CH4 HD has a lot more content at the moment then this is the best option.
 

dmellis

Standard Member
If you cancel the HD subscription after the trial you will still be able to view CH4 HD. If you cancel the Sky subscription completely then you will be unable to use the PVR functions of the Sky+ HD box. I'm assuming that you're talking about sourcing the HD box via the Tesco offer?

ATB

Max

The box was direct from sky on the £73 for 4 months free sky basic plus SD sky box, includes dish and fitting etc. then I changed the box to SKY HD + at the cost of £150 for a new one! but the sky + features do not work, when I try to access record etc a message appears that I need to upgrade.
 

dmellis

Standard Member
You don't get ITV HD at all - that is only available on FreeSat

Ch4 HD will still be available after the end of your subscription - but as noted above you won't be able to record / live pause etc.

Is there a reason why ITV HD is not available on Sky?
 

pet2000

Standard Member
The box was direct from sky on the £73 for 4 months free sky basic plus SD sky box, includes dish and fitting etc. then I changed the box to SKY HD + at the cost of £150 for a new one! but the sky + features do not work, when I try to access record etc a message appears that I need to upgrade.

From what I understood so far is that is where you need to cough-up your £10 p/month for just recording or £17 p/month for recording and basic package (someone correct me if that's wrong).
 

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