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Topic # 130994 4-Oct-2013 18:20
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I've browsed through as many of the threads as I can find, but I'm having real trouble finding a Freeview box that will meet my specs. I currently have MySky, but am ditching for cost reasons, so need to switch to a Freeview solution.

I was assuming that I would connect it to my existing Sat dish, but I think I probably have a UHF aerial on the roof, so that may work too.

Requirements
- All Freeview channels (but I think that's universal)
- Decent EPG
- PVR
- Ability to copy (playable) content off PVR
- ball park $350 spend at the top end

Very much preferred
- access content via LAN/WiFi, rather than needing to connect USB Drive
- HD or upscaling
- slot for possibly putting in someone else's Sky card for using it temporarily as a Sky box
- both HDMI and RCA/Scart outputs, able to be used concurrently

Nice extras
- media player via LAN
- DVD or Blu-Ray player

I don't know if I'm totally dreaming or not. Thanks for any advice that people might have.

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  Reply # 908038 4-Oct-2013 18:23
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Sat Freeview doesn't give you all available channels or HD. If you want these, you need terrestrial Freeview via a UHF antenna.




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  Reply # 908118 4-Oct-2013 20:20
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I *believe* that the old aerial on the roof used to get Sky (pre-digital), so should be UHF, so Terrestrial may be an option.

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 908183 4-Oct-2013 22:28
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I don't know of any box that does everything you want. The basic dishtv boxes are in your price range, but just have the essentials. The panasonic and samsung boxes have more features, but are up nearer the 500 mark.

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  Reply # 908193 4-Oct-2013 23:02
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I think "old Sky" was VHF, not UHF.

Have a look at your antenna, and the bits sticking out at the sides.

If they are quite long, and get shorter towards the end it's VHF, an no good for freeview.

If they are quite short, and all the same length, it's UHF.

There are lots of threads hare about optimising your freeview setup!




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  Reply # 908199 4-Oct-2013 23:20
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turb: I think "old Sky" was VHF, not UHF.


It was sky UHF, thats what they actually called it when it was available.




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  Reply # 908220 5-Oct-2013 00:18
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wongtop: I don't know of any box that does everything you want. The basic dishtv boxes are in your price range, but just have the essentials. The panasonic and samsung boxes have more features, but are up nearer the 500 mark.


Are there particular models you're thinking of if the budget can be made to stretch a little?

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  Reply # 908230 5-Oct-2013 00:57
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richms:
turb: I think "old Sky" was VHF, not UHF.


It was sky UHF, thats what they actually called it when it was available.


Aww my bad.




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  Reply # 908346 5-Oct-2013 10:21
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markboynz:
wongtop: I don't know of any box that does everything you want. The basic dishtv boxes are in your price range, but just have the essentials. The panasonic and samsung boxes have more features, but are up nearer the 500 mark.


Are there particular models you're thinking of if the budget can be made to stretch a little?


The Panasonic model XW390 is probably closest to your budget - around $470 in sales, $500-550 when not on sale.

Does most of what you want (all channels, upscaling, can copy content off to DVD, accessible over network using DLNA). I have one, and apart from the crappy user interface (which is worse than for the models it replaced) it's a good unit.

However, it isn't satellite and won't take a Sky card.

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  Reply # 908379 5-Oct-2013 11:45
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richms:
turb: I think "old Sky" was VHF, not UHF.


It was sky UHF, thats what they actually called it when it was available.


And the reason for Freeview being restacked after Sky's analog shutdown to make use of the vacated space.




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  Reply # 908412 5-Oct-2013 12:48
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JimmyH:
markboynz:
wongtop: I don't know of any box that does everything you want. The basic dishtv boxes are in your price range, but just have the essentials. The panasonic and samsung boxes have more features, but are up nearer the 500 mark.


Are there particular models you're thinking of if the budget can be made to stretch a little?


The Panasonic model XW390 is probably closest to your budget - around $470 in sales, $500-550 when not on sale.

Does most of what you want (all channels, upscaling, can copy content off to DVD, accessible over network using DLNA). I have one, and apart from the crappy user interface (which is worse than for the models it replaced) it's a good unit.

However, it isn't satellite and won't take a Sky card.


I was looking at that unit last night. Does the DLNA allow getting content off the unit as well, or do you have to burn it to DVD? Ideally, I want to store content digitally (I work in academia, and maintain a tv archive of some content), so I'd need to do multiple steps to get it on and off the DVDs.

But thus far, that's looking like the best option.

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  Reply # 908420 5-Oct-2013 12:59
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How bad is the conversion to DVD on these units too? Can they put the proper h264 content onto a dvd-r disc so you can still play it in a PC etc or is it strictly re-interlaced and re-encoded low-def content that they will put onto a dvd-r?




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  Reply # 908457 5-Oct-2013 14:19
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I can't imagine a DVD recorder STB doing anything but MPEG-2 576i.

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  Reply # 908462 5-Oct-2013 14:42
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JimmyH:
markboynz:
wongtop: I don't know of any box that does everything you want. The basic dishtv boxes are in your price range, but just have the essentials. The panasonic and samsung boxes have more features, but are up nearer the 500 mark.


Are there particular models you're thinking of if the budget can be made to stretch a little?


The Panasonic model XW390 is probably closest to your budget - around $470 in sales, $500-550 when not on sale.

Does most of what you want (all channels, upscaling, can copy content off to DVD, accessible over network using DLNA). I have one, and apart from the crappy user interface (which is worse than for the models it replaced) it's a good unit.

However, it isn't satellite and won't take a Sky card.


I think you are correct; this would be the best match. They have been on sale for as little as $399 recently; keep you eyes on pricespy for the best deal.

I have a similar unit but have problems accessing over the network from my PC; but I believe that you cannot transfer data from the internal hard drive anyway? They do have a reasonably easy edit function which is a good feature.

I have a unit with a Bluray player not a DVD recorder so do not know what the transfer to DVD is like; but guess once you have it on there it can be transferred back to your network via a PC to any format you wish - but this would be a pain in the back side.

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  Reply # 908489 5-Oct-2013 15:37
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benneg:
I have a similar unit but have problems accessing over the network from my PC; but I believe that you cannot transfer data from the internal hard drive anyway? They do have a reasonably easy edit function which is a good feature.

I have a BWT720 BluRay recorder and can transfer files from the HDD to the PC OK using Twonky 7.
They can then be easily edited and stored.
It will burn HD to BluRay disc but reformats to SD for burning DVDs. The burnt BluRay disc will then play OK on other machines provided they don't have copy protected content. DVDs will play on anything.



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  Reply # 908560 5-Oct-2013 18:04
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Does anyone have any experience with the PWT500? It looks like it's a slightly cut down version of the BWT720, which really is a little out of my price range. But I'm not sure if there's really much difference aside from HDD size, or if I'm missing something...

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