Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) Review: Expensive and niche

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Verdict

A niche production, the Freesat 4K Goggle box Box (Non-recordable) delivers alive Telly via your satellite just doesn’t let you tape or pause. Information technology offers a good mix of live and on-demand channels, although the lack of All4, Disney+ and Apple Goggle box+ is a piffling disappointing.

If y’all’ve got Freesat built into your Television set, then use this direct connection. If you lot’ve got Freeview, yous can buy cheaper watch-merely set-top boxes, or fifty-fifty buy a recorder for non much more than than this costs.

Pros

  • Practiced range of channels
  • Minor
  • Clean interface

Cons

  • No Dolby Vision back up
  • Interface is a little laggy
  • Express pick of apps and no All4
  • Can’t pause live TV

Key Features


  • Channels
    Y’all get all of the chief terrestrial channels in Hard disk drive, including Channel iv, which has recently been re-added to the service.

  • Streaming apps
    For catch-upwards, there’s BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, My5, and STV Thespian; plus you get Britbox, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

  • Connection
    This box uses a feed from a satellite dish for live channels.

Introduction

Freesat is a viable alternative to Freeview for houses with poor terrestrial reception and for anyone that doesn’t want to pay for premium TV.

If y’all don’t intendance about recording Television receiver shows either, so there’southward the Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) that I have on review here. This box uses your current satellite feed and plugs into a Boob tube via HDMI.

Limited app support, an inability to suspension live Tv set and a relatively high price make this a niche product.

Pattern

  • Compact and groovy fix-top box
  • Can utilise two satellite feeds

The Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) is a slightly smaller version of the Freesat 4K Tv Recorder box; there’s no difficult deejay inside, so the company could brand a space-saving. Rounded edges and a plain stop brand this a rather anonymous flake of kit, but that’s alright in my eyes.

At the back are all of the ports that you need, including two satellite inputs. That may seem a little strange, as this box can only stream a single channel at i fourth dimension (the recorder used the 2 inputs to permit you record upward to 4 channels at once). Freesat says that this lets the box piece of work with any satellite dish, and it can utilize one tuner for a Tv programme, and the other to pull in programme data and updates.

There’south then an HDMI output, optical S/PDIF sound output and an Ethernet port, although Wi-FI is likewise built-in.


Features

  • Integrates live content with on-need
  • No Live 4K channels
  • Tin’t pause live Tv set

Yous get the same interface here equally on the recordable box. When you lot first connect the box, a sorcerer takes you through setting upwards your box, scanning for channels and connecting to the internet. You’re so taken to the main interface.

Freesat has done a good job keeping things simple and basic, with high-contrast colours making text easy to read. The interface is a little laggy at times, so it’s easy to spring past a carte du jour option.

Navigation is via the same chunky remote control equally arranged with the recordable box. Information technology’southward piece of cake to hold and has responsive buttons that are but about the right size, along with shortcuts to iPlayer, ITV Hub and Netflix. A Bluetooth remote would have been nicer.

Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) remote control

Here, the record button doesn’t practise anything, and you can’t pause or rewind live Telly, equally there’south no storage. Given how inexpensive solid-state storage is, I’d expect a picayune fleck of buffer space for this feature, especially at this cost.

Tap the Dwelling house button and yous can spring into the TV Guide, Reminders (replaces Recordings) and On Demand.

Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) main menu

In the TV Guide, yous go a thumbnail preview of what’s currently on. Underneath are the listings. If y’all select a plan in SD, a pop-up message asks if you want to move to the HD version instead.

Yous can’t tape, simply hitting the OK button and you can gear up a reminder for a show. That’s really of limited employ, as you have to recollect to have the Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) turned on in society to get the reminder.

Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) TV Guide

As with Freeview, you lot can step back in time and, if a plan is available on one of the on-need services, you tin watch it. For programmes that have started, the Red button lets you first watching from the start on-demand.

Freesat currently supports BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, My5, STV Player and UKTV Play but there’s no All4. That’s a shame, particularly every bit Aqueduct 4 HD has just returned to the service after a hiatus.

Channel selection is pretty good. There are more than 180 channels of which 25 are HD including the BBC channels, ITV, Channel 4 and Aqueduct 5, plus some additional choices including Al Jazeera and CNN International.

While this is a 4K box, that’s certainly not the case for live Television receiver, as there are no 4K channels available. Instead, 4K is only available through on-demand apps, such every bit iPlayer. Alive channels may come in the future but there are no confirmed plans.

Besides as the regular grab-up apps, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video are born, plus Britbox. In that location’s no Disney+, Now or Apple tree Television+.

Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) apps

With the Freesat app, yous can command the box with your phone. In practice, there’s a lot of lag between tapping a push on the app and the result appearing on the screen; the bundled remote is a lot easier to employ.

Operation

  • No Dolby Vision back up
  • Quality varies by aqueduct

Quality of alive TV depends on the channel that you’re watching. Where available in HD, such as BBC One, the broadcast quality is as good equally you lot go anywhere else, such as on Sky Q. SD channels are more than variable, and take a tendency to look soft, lacking in detail.

Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) Netflix

With streaming, you can get Ultra Hard disk content. HDR10 is supported, merely there’s no support for Dolby Vision. HDR is better than naught. Watching The Witcher, Stregobor’south business firm is rendered in its full glory, with the brilliant sunlight streaming in through the windows contrasted against the darker interior.

The end fight scene of that episode retains its moody look, too. Watch on a player and Television receiver with Dolby Vision, such every bit the player congenital into my LG Boob tube, and the overall quality is better: darker blacks and richer colours throughout.

I also found that my LG TV’s app was far smoother; the Freesat 4K Idiot box Box (Non-recordable) introduced some jarring artefacts.

On-demand content from other players is available at the maximum streaming quality offered. Streaming quality isn’t equally adept every bit circulate quality; with Sky Q, on-demand content is downloaded at the full broadcast quality, then looks better.

Latest deals

Should you buy it?

If you don’t want to tape live TV and have no other way of receiving live broadcasts, other than via a satellite dish, you may want this box.

If your TV has Freesat built-in, use that connection; and if you can get Freeview, you’ll detect better-value set-top boxes, including recordable models.

Last Thoughts

The main issues with the Freesat 4K TV Box (Non-recordable) are price and its niche employ. Information technology’s only an attractive option for those that take a TV without Freesat built-in, and that don’t accept a regular aeriform.

If your TV has Freesat already, so use its connection. As well as saving cash, most smart TVs let you plug in a USB drive so that you tin can suspension alive Telly. You’re probable to have a amend drove of apps, likewise, or you can buy an Amazon Fire Television Stick 4K to add together more.

If y’all have an aeriform, then this box is rather redundant. Your TV is likely to accept Freeview integrated and, if not, a set-pinnacle box is clay cheap. If y’all want a recorder, and then the Manhattan T3-R Freeview Play 4K Smart Recorder only costs a petty more.

If you have a demand for this box, then it gets the basics right, but the Freesat 4K Tv set Recorder is better, although a lot more expensive.

How we examination

We exam every prepare-tiptop box we review thoroughly over an extended period of fourth dimension. We use standard tests to compare features properly. Nosotros’ll ever tell yous what we discover. We never, ever, have money to review a product.

Observe out more than near how we test in our ethics policy.

Test the channels available, and the format they’re bachelor. We watch a range of programmes to run across how reliable the box is.

Tested streaming apps for quality and features, testing compatibility with 4K, HDR and Dolby Atmos.

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FAQs

Can you pause live Idiot box with the Freesat 4K Boob tube Recorder?

No, this box has no storage on it.

Can y’all install boosted apps to the Freesat 4K Goggle box Recorder?

No, you get the apps that are pre-installed merely.

Why does the Freesat 4K TV Recorder accept two tuners?

One is for live broadcasts, and the other is used for program information and updates.

Full specs

UK RRP

Manufacturer

Storage Capacity

Size (Dimensions)

Weight

Release Date

First Reviewed Date

Model Number

Model Variants

Resolution

HDR

Tuners

Ports

Connectivity

Colours

Audio Formats

Remote Command

Apps

Freesat 4K Television set Recorder

£199

Freesat

512GB, 1TB, 2TB

250 ten 150 10 35 MM

ane.34 KG

2022

12/03/2020

UHD-4X-500

1TB, 2TB, Non-recordable version

3840 x 2160

Yeah

4

HDMI, Digital Optical Audio, LAN

Wi-Fi

Anthracite

Dolby Digital, Dolby Atmos

Yes

BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, My5, STV Thespian, BritBox, Netflix, Eros At present, CBS Catchup, UKTV Play, BBC Sounds, YouTube, YouTube Kids, Pop Histrion, France 24, Horror Bites, Amazon Prime Video

Jargon buster

Ethernet

The standard for wired networking. Ethernet tin can run at dissimilar speeds with Gigabit Ethernet (1000Mbps) and 10/100Mbps the most popular.

Source: https://www.trustedreviews.com/reviews/freesat-4k-tv-box-non-recordable

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