menuMENU    UK Free TV logo Freesat



Click to see updates

Upgrading from Sky+HD to Freesat+HD

What to do if you want to stop subscribing to Sky+HD but do wish to record/pause/play free HD television.

What to do if you want to stop subscribing to Sky+HD but do wis
published on UK Free TV

You might get a glossy magazine every month, but what do Sky really think of your custom?

"Give me a f**king name on a direct debit and it's mine for life,"
- Sam Chisholm, former boss of BSkyB.

Perhaps you responded to an offer like the one blow that promised a gratis Sky+HD box (for new customers taking their first Sky+HD package) with free standard set-up

But you were so excited with the thought of a £50 M&S voucher that you didn't think to follow each of the little daggers and little stars to quite read all the terms and conditions:

So, your twelve months of commitment are over and, for reasons of budget (or politics) you have decided you want to keep all the features of Sky+ - live pause, high definition, extended electronic programme guide, series record, and recording two programmes at once whilst you watch another - but don't want to fork out every month on top of your TV Licence - and you still get hundreds of free TV channels

Here's what you can do.

First you need to buy a Freesat+HD box. There are many on the market, and can be bought from Argos, Currys DIGITAL, John Lewis, Comet and online at Amazon, as well as other stores.



This will take no more than ten minutes. First you will need to disconnect the Sky+HD box mains from the wall socket.

Then you will need to disconnect the cables from the back of the Sky+HD box.

Pull out the mains power connection (1), carefully unscrew the satellite dish links (2) and (3), and then take out the HDMI lead (4) to your HDTV. If you have an "surround sound" amplifier, you may also have a digital audio connection (5).

Remove the Sky+HD box and put the Freesat+HD box back in the same position.

Then reconnect the cables: the mains power cable (1) - but not to the wall just yet, screw the two satellite dish links (2) and (3) and connect the HDMI cable (4) to your HDTV. If you had one, reconnect the digital audio connection (5).

If you have an Ethernet router, you can connect it to the Freesat+HD box at this point (5).

With everything in place, turn on the mains power and power up the Freesat+HD box.

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:

And that's it.

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
Freesat adds a plethora of new channels in time for Christmas including channel 1
A tale of a two Freesat boxes2
Yesterday, Drama and Really joining Freesat this month3
PBS America joins Freesat for Halloween4
Fixing the Freesat Freetime internet connection problem5
Satellite TV operators FRANSAT, TIVUSAT and our Freesat launch FreeTV Alliance 6

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

3:00 PM

Pete: There is no point buying a card, your expired subscription card will give you the same.

The current free-to-air HD channels are: BBC One HD, BBC HD, ITV1/STV/UTV HD, Channel 4 HD and NHK World TV. Channel 5 HD will join them soon.

Please see the above article for further details.

link to this comment
Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
Thursday, 10 November 2011
12:29 PM


I have a sky subscription and can view the free HD channels downstairs. I just picked up another HD sky box for very cheap so wanted to install this upstairs (I have an octo-LNB so leads are not a problem). When I watch sky TV (on my old pre-HD box) in the upstairs room I have no problems watching Sky and the signal strength is about 50% but when I try to switch this to the new HD box in the same upstairs room, signal strength is 0% and I get no channels at all? With the same lead in the back of the new receiver!

How can this be? Is it because it won't work until I buy a freesat card?

Thanks for any help..


link to this comment
Jim's 4 posts GB flag

1:12 PM

Jim: It sounds very much like your "new" Sky HD box is not working. Can you try it on your other satellite connection downstairs?

link to this comment
Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
1:54 PM


I did that and it works fine down there (with my subscription card in). I thought it was weird too. Wondered if the newer boxes won't work unless they had been properly "paired etc". I'm hoping to borrow a friend's freesat card later to try that out.

link to this comment
Jim's 4 posts GB flag

2:21 PM

Jim: The box will should work perfectly well without any card in it.

link to this comment
Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
6:07 PM

Jim: That's what I thought. Last time I used an HD box in another room (with no card) it worked but not this time... I guess I'll try those reset methods mentioned on this website. I already did the software update thing though, but it didn't work as there was "no signal"!

link to this comment
Jim's 4 posts GB flag

6:19 PM

Jim: Usually "no signal" means just that... You get a different message if there is no card in the box.

Sometimes the end of satellite cables can get damaged, it can be useful to cut off an inch from the end and remake the connection.

link to this comment
Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
Friday, 11 November 2011
8:33 AM

Jim: Thanks for the help I received. The HD box righted itself in the end. It needed to be turned on without any card for a few minutes to "initialise" itself. Fine now!

link to this comment
Jim's 4 posts GB flag

8:39 AM

Jim: I am very pleased to hear that. I am sure it will be OK now.

link to this comment
Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
Saturday, 12 November 2011
1:41 PM

I have FreeSat from Sky at the moment on one TV.

I would like to 1) record programmes, and 2) watch programmes on TVs in other rooms. What do I need to do this?

Can I buy a cheap Sky+ box on eBay and just switch it for my existing box?

Do I need to abandon Freesat on Sky altogether?

If I was to abandon Sky and move to a Freesat+HD box can I do this using my Sky dish? And would I need/be able to get more than the one wire coming from that dish?

I'm completely lost so any advice would be greatly appreciated :-S

link to this comment
Andy's 1 post GB flag
Select more comments

Your comment please
Please post a question, answer or commentUK Free TV is here to help people. If you are rude or disrespectful all of your posts will be deleted and you will be banned.

Privacy policy: UK Free Privacy policy.