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Whole house digital TV

There are many ways to make all the TVs in your home digital.

There are many ways to make all the TVs in your home digital.
published on UK Free TV

Here are some examples of how to make your home fully digital.

Sky+ with multiroom

The device on the end of the "arm" of your satellite dish is an LNB. Because the digibox sends power to the LNB, you can not just split the cable onto two input. When you buy a Sky+ package from Sky, it comes with a "quad LNB", which has four outputs. The engineer runs two cables from the dish to the Sky+ box.

You can then run one each to a digibox by up to four televisions. You can either do this though "Sky multiroom" (as shown, with Sky+ in one room and another digibox elsewhere), or by doing it yourself.

Sky+ boxes require a constant authorisation signal from Sky over the satellite path. The moment you disconnect the box from the satellite inputs or you stop paying Sky the 10 per month the Sky+ box will stop working as a personal video recorder, and act like a normal digibox. You can't use the box to record, playback or pause without a Sky subscription.

Freesat multiroom - no Freeview

It's not possible to use it to receive Freeview, but you can get the Freesat service. All you need is either a new DVB-S (digital video broadcasting - satelite) box, or an old Sky Digibox. You can use a Quad LNB to supply digital satellite signals to digiboxes in each room.

Sky and Freeview

It will always be better to use a higher classification aerial alone, rather than a less able one with an amplifier. With digital signals, it is far more important to get good quality reception for the set-top box, rather than increase the signal's power as this will simply be ignored by the digital receiver.

For many people Freeview is used on the main and second TV, in addition to subscription Sky on the first.

Cable and Freeview

Or you might have NTL/Telewest cable on the main TV, with Freeview for the secondary televisions.

Sky with RF second TV

If you connect a second TV to a digibox by using the "RF output", this does not require a separate connection to the dish, but you can only watch the same channel from the digibox on both TVs. With Sky digiboxes, you can also use your remote control with a IR receiver by the second TV.

Freesat media center

The PC version of Sky+, such as Media Center:
  • you can buy as large a hard drive as you want
  • it's much better than Sky+
  • you've more chance of HD working
  • you can share the recorded channels to a local area network, play them on a Xbox360 and burn them to DVD
  • it records the digital signal, so the playback quality is perfect.

The specification for the Elonex Artisan LX, and it says it comes with the "Hauppauge WinTV Nova-T" cards. The "T" suffix denotes the DVB-T (digital terrestrial) version of the card. A satellite version of the card is available (Elonex may supply these instead of the "-T" cards)?

Wireless networks should be up to the job of sharing the recorded TV programmes to the local network, but it is my personal experience that they are not. You might find it works better by connecting your new Media Centre computer to the wireless router using a cat5 (twisted pair Ethernet) patch cable.

Freeview media center

The Freeview media center is easier to setup, as you can just use a simple splitter to provide the UHF Freeview signals to two receiver cards (or a dual-headed card).

Once again the recorded programmes can be watched by using a simple file share, or by using an XBox360.

Freeview everywhere

If the Freeview signal is strong, you can usually just split the aerial cable where convenient to supply a digital television signal to many digital televisions or set-top boxes.

Freeview and Sky everywhere

In good signal areas, it will be possible to feed the aerial signal first the the Sky digibox, and then on to integrated televisions or Freeview boxes, adding in the ability to watch one Sky channel around the home.

Freeview everywhere with masthead amplifier

Another possibility is that you are passing the incoming aerial signal though some other device (such as a VCR) that is either filtering or producing it's own signal. If this is the case, see if plugging the aerial directly into one Freeview box will allow you to see these channels. If this works, then you can use a masthead amplifier to boost the signal for each digital television or set-top box.

Help with Television sets?
Why are all TVs on sale not digital?1
Do I still have to pay for a TV licence?2
I had perfect channel 5 reception - until I got a digital TV box!3
I Have a Pocket Tv For taking out so I can keep up with news and sport. Will thi4
The pictures from my digital box are all green!5
In this section
Loft aerials1
Do I need to buy a booster?2
How to receive Freeview on your PC3
Indoor aerials4
Connecting it all up5
Now and Next6

Monday, 5 November 2012

9:43 PM

Michael bean: Dish feeds are completely 100% compatible between Freesat and Sky equipment and so if you are just intending to use a Freesat box (without recording facilities) you only require to use one of the two coax feeds, any one of the two will do as they are identical as well as being independent of each other.

Of course if its a Humax (good choice!) PVR then obviously both leads will be required and is simplicity to set up, as about the only thing you will require to do is enter your post code into the set up menu box before tuning takes place, this is to ensure that you get the correct regional news services, in a Sky box this info is programmed into the Sky card.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB flag
Sunday, 16 December 2012
Val Casson
11:42 AM

I have an Toshiba HD tv. and I have just attempted to reinstall channels but a screen came at the end to ask did I want to search for analouge, I pressed yes, now realise analouge is the old system, which I have programmed into my t.v. how do I get it back to normal. When I press menu I get a blue screen, which will only take me to tv settings not install. Can anyone help. Thanks

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Val Casson's 3 posts GB flag
11:45 AM

Oh I forgot to mention all the boxes that come on blue screen state no signal.


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Val's 3 posts GB flag
Dave Lindsay

12:00 PM

Val Casson: Knowledge of the model number may allow the user manual to be found which would be likely to give a definate answer to your question.

However, if I was looking at the remote and had to use my intuition I would press the button marked "Input" or a circle with an arrow pointing into it. I would expect that this would give a list of inputs (scart, HDMI etc) and included in that list would be analogue and digital TV. Analogue TV may be "ATV" and digital may be "DTV" or one may just be labelled "TV".

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB flag
12:16 PM

I do have the model no. which is 32BV700B, but when I press menu, I only the tv set up menu. The suggestions about the remote, I dont have those options. I tried to plug a small t.v. in from upstairs also a HD and again on this it says no signal, when I go to set-up digital is not switched on. Have I switched the digital signal to my whole house off. I must have. Thanks very much for your time in trying to help me. It is much appreciated. If you know how to get the digital switched back on that would be useful.

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Val's 3 posts GB flag
Dave Lindsay

12:28 PM

Val: The user manual is here:


The button you need to press is the "Source" one which performs the same function as I described above. From there you need to select "DTV".

What you have done on the Tosh cannot have any effect on other TVs. Therefore, if there is an issue then it can only be with the particular TV in question (or your aerial system).

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Dave Lindsay's 5,724 posts GB flag

3:52 PM

Val: Your problem is suggestive of something being defective with your aerial system and this is why you are having trouble trying to tune the TV, and so if you are using a jumper cable from a wall socket into the TV then this should be checked out, but whatever system you are using it would have been of considerable assistance if you had indicated your location, this in the form of a post code or one from nearby such as a shop etc as this would then have enabled an assessment of the signal levels expected at your location and from the hitherto unknown station involved.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB flag
Saturday, 29 December 2012
1:56 PM

I have a sky+ box and a Humax freesat box. At the moment both cables from the dish go to sky box to allow recording. Is it possible to fit a splitter with switch so that I can choose on occasions to use the freesat box instead of sky? I have a 4 point LNB and can watch sky in another room.

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ktm's 1 post GB flag

2:51 PM

ktm: simple answer for everything to work right is no. You say you have another sky box elsewhere so you are either using 3 or 4 points being used so either take the cables out of the box you aren't using or have the lnb changed to an octi with 8 outputs and have the extra cables run to the other box.

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Mazbar's 384 posts GB flag
Wednesday, 23 January 2013
9:20 AM

Hi, my postcode is TR7 2HJ recently gor new larger tv & I am having problems with my signal, think I need a new loft aerial (outdoor is out of the question due to high winds)and would like to know which type of aerial is best & how strong a signal I am dealing with. I wish to get signal to 3 or 4 tv's, will I need a booster & is it best to split the cable close to the aerial. At present 2 of the cables are just 'wired' straight onto the aerial (bodged)by previous residents. Thanks

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Catherine's 1 post GB flag
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