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Upgrading from Sky to Freesat

It takes less than five minutes to replace an existing satellite box with a Freesat one.

It takes less than five minutes to replace an existing satellit
published on UK Free TV

If you have an existing Sky or fSfS (Freesat from Sky) installation and want to go to upgrade to Freesat, it is a simple process.

First, buy the Freesat box from a Argos, Curry.digital, Comet, John Lewes or your local independent shop:



In the box you will find the Freesat box:



Also included will be a remote control, and this model also comes with a SCART cable, a HDMI cable and a stereo-with-composite cable. Unpack the ones you need:



You old Sky box looks like this:



Unplug the mains first from the Sky box, then pull out the SCART (or SCARTs) and then unscrew the connection to the satellite dish.



Remove the Sky box and fit the Freesat box. Reconnect the satellite cable (take care as to not damage the connection) and then the SCART and finally connect the mains power:



The box will look like this:



The box also contains the manual, which has full installation instructions. Finally fit the batteries into the remote control.



The TV screen first displays the box's logo



The first set-up screen allows you to select the TV type, widescreen mode and resolution:



Next the box checks for the satellite signal:



Then there is a check for updated software:



Then you enter your postcode and the box checks it:



The next step is a scan for channels. This takes about 30 seconds:



And that's it. You can now view channels, like 108 for BBC HD:



Or press the GUIDE button for the EPG:



(Apologies for the photos not being of the top quality)



Help with Free satellite?
What can I do when my Sky Digibox says 'No Signal' or 'Technical fau1
Can I receive UK TV in Ghana?2
What is a CA module?3
My box says "No Satellite signal being received"4
Is there any way I can get free channels via satellite and have the kind of hard5
[][][
In this section
A tale of a two Freesat boxes1
Yesterday, Drama and Really joining Freesat this month2
PBS America joins Freesat for Halloween3
Fixing the Freesat Freetime internet connection problem4
Satellite TV operators FRANSAT, TIVUSAT and our Freesat launch FreeTV Alliance 5
An Independent Scot would still be able to watch the BBC on satellite, surely? 6

Comments
Thursday, 13 November 2014
A
Anthony
sentiment_satisfiedBronze

7:18 AM

clwyd: you'll need a Freesat HD + recorder to be able to record for free without a subscription.

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Anthony's 50 posts GB
Friday, 14 November 2014
N
Ned
7:45 PM

Hi. I have 2 sky+ boxes from my old address but I dont want to subscribe to sky in my new` house. What use can I make out of these boxes. I will be happy to watch free channels as long as I can record them. Shall I install an aerial and forget the sky boxes? Can I sell them ?

Many thanks for any comments!


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Ned's 2 posts GB
J
jb38
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

9:15 PM

Ned : The recording (or playback) facilities on Sky+ boxes are not accessible without a subscription having been taken out purely for this purpose, the charge being around £10.25 per month.

If, like many, you decide against taking out a subscription, then if a dish is already installed in your new house and with two coax feeds coming from it? your best bet would be to abandon the idea of using the Sky+ boxes and purchase a Freesat (not Freeview) twin tuner recorder (PVR), as Freesat devices are technically 100% compatible for use with Sky dishes.

If though on the other hand you do not have a dish installed, then provided you are located in a good area for reception? (a post code required for checking) it would probably be best to have an aerial installed and purchase a twin tuner Freeview recorder.


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jb38's 7,179 posts GB
Saturday, 15 November 2014
N
Ned
6:45 AM

Thank you for the advice.

Assuming that I have good reception and have both a dish and an aerial already in place which option do you recommend, Freesat or Freeview ???

link to this comment
Ned's 2 posts GB
M
Mike Davison
sentiment_satisfiedSilver

9:21 AM
Wetherby

Ned: If you are in an area that has COM7 active then the main HD PSB channels already exist for you either using satellite or terrestrial. If COM7 is not in service then Satellite will be the only way you will get all the main HD channels. It is indisputable that there are more 'secondary' channels from satellite as well. There is only one danger in having satellite as sole source and that is weather dependence. If a thunder cloud comes between dish and satellite then degraded performance and loss of service for some minutes can occur. Terrestrial services are rarely affected by weather other than co-channel effects in still summer high pressure tropospheric ducting conditions which can last for days at a time, but this does not usually result in total loss of signal. You are really comparing apples and pears, so having both covers all bases.

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Mike Davison's 127 posts GB
M
MikeB
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

7:30 PM

Ned: Its true that Freesat has certain advantages of Freeview, but Freeview is a bit more flexible. As Mike points out, you comparing apples and pears - they both have good points. Ironically, because you've both systems, you possibly have too much choice!

If you want to replace Sky + with a Humax Freesat PVR, thats easy. But you will need an LNB on the dish for each Freesat tuner. 2 on the PVR, one on the TV (some TV's do have them built in), and an extra - thats a quad, and pretty easy to retro fit. But if you have TV's elsewhere, then it can get more complex. There is a discussion about this on this thread: Freesat reception - all about dishes

All TV's have Freeview (or in a perfect world, Freeview HD) tuners. The bulk of PVR's are Freeview. Freesat or other sat systems are a lot thinner on the ground - LG and Sony often now have generic sat. tuners in the back, although they dont tend to shout about it. However, a seperate Freesat tuner will cost around fifty quid.

So in terms of choice and easy of connection, Freeview tends to be easier. However, there is no reason you can't do both. Freesat for the main TV/PVR (and the aerial can go to the TV as well), and Freeview for everything else. Frankly, you could run Sky, Virgin, Freeview, Freesat and stream to a modern TV - why you want to is another matter!

link to this comment
MikeB's 2,579 posts GB
J
jb38
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

8:56 PM

Ned : As the statement of "assuming that you have good reception" in plain and simple terms means that you are unaware of exactly what you can receive, this being backed up by that said in your original posting of "shall I install an aerial", then before deciding on what system to use, I would suggest that you make one or two local enquiries in order to determine the status of Freeview reception in the area, as Freeview reception can be problematic in quite a number of areas, especially at certain times of the year.

Another point being, should the outcome of your enquiries be favourable for Freeview reception, make sure that this includes an answer of "yes" to the question of "can you receive ITV3", as many areas in the UK are covered by what's known as Freeview "light" transmitters, stations in this category only transmitting PSB channels associated with the licence fee and "not" the full range of commercial channels as available from main stations, the ITV3 question being particularly important as its only broadcast by main stations.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB
J
jb38
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

9:47 PM

Ned : Sight amendment to that said regarding the ITV3 question, make it Pick TV on EPG11, the reason for this being that I recall one exception to the norm of ITV3 / COM4 only being broadcast by main stations, although at this moment I cant remember the station that the exception applies to, but though Pick TV / COM5 "is" only broadcast from main stations.

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jb38's 7,179 posts GB
M
MikeB
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

10:21 PM

Ned: If you include a postcode, we can try and work out what might work.

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MikeB's 2,579 posts GB
Monday, 26 January 2015
A
andy
9:12 PM

I have the free SKY channels through an old sky digibox (drx-100). No card and no subscription. If i bought a FREESAT HD box , apart from the 8 or so HD channels , is there any advantage.?
Are there more channels available with FREESAT compared to the free to view SKY ones ?

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andy's 1 post GB
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