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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

Monday, 7 March 2011
8:31 PM

Briantist: Using the VM red button gives access to the TV platform BBC iPlayer..... no internet connection.

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Strathearn's 13 posts GB flag

8:37 PM

Strathearn: It is an internet connection. What else do you call a TCP/IP connection?
It's got an IP address and everything. If you attach to the back of the box you can do all the usual TCP/IP things.
Do you think it's "magic" or something?
I've only been an networking expert for what .. a couple of decades. You'd think I would know by now.

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Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag

10:39 PM

Strathern - iPlayer requires broadband internet access. As does ITV Player. You can record Live radio and TV and you can series record - I recorded the hellimed series and currently doing likewise with Mrs Browns Boys. Whilst you can record live radio you can't "re - wind". A catch-up service is available through iPlayer

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lesnicol's 991 posts GB flag
Wednesday, 9 March 2011
Trevor Harris

11:49 AM

Going from 56 to 3 HD channels is hardly an UPGRADE!!!!

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Trevor Harris's 367 posts GB flag

12:27 PM

Trevor Harris: Going from paying a fortune to nothing certainly is.

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Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
10:24 PM

Do the freesat boxes have the ability to rewind instantly for live tv. i.e. does it cache 30+ mins of video like Sky+ and also if you've watched 20 minutes of a film and you press record, as long as I haven't turned it over to another channel wil it record what I've watched and the remaining time of the movie?

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Nigel's 2 posts GB flag
10:29 PM

When I say instant rewind, I mean like watching the live tv rugby and seeing a brilliant try and then hitting rewind to see it again :-) it seems the players i've looked at don't have this feature and seems to be sky+ that only have this! is this true?

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Nigel's 2 posts GB flag
Thursday, 10 March 2011

5:43 AM

Nigel: Yes.

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Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
10:47 AM

For clarification (I think) Freesat and Sky are pretty much interchangeable as units go. The major differences come in terms of channels available. Not quite sure how people are confusing themselves with the technicalities of it all.

Excellent article as ever Brian.

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DAS TV's 2 posts GB flag

12:40 PM

DAS TV: There is the small matter of being able to play/pause/record with Freesat+HD without a subscription, which makes quite a lot of difference.

You get a radio EPG (including record) with Freesat and radio stations have the MEHG5 interactive services.

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Briantist's 38,899 posts GB flag
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