Hard drive recorder for under £200

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Watch out Sky! Korean company Humax – best known in mainland Europe for its satellite TV equipment – is gunning for the UK consumer electronics market with a raft of interesting new products, including a sub £200 Personal Video Recorder (PVR).

Available from October, the PVR-8000T will combine a Freeview (digital terrestrial) box with a 40Gb hard drive. Up to 20 hours of programmes can be recorded onto the drive but the Electronic Programme Guide – like the one for the similar, but more expensive, Pace Twin model – only offers now and next programming information at present. Also the model is a single tuner unit so it’s not possible to record two programmes at the same time (Sky+ has this facility though it hasn’t been switched on yet!)

However, Humax does plans a twin tuner model (the PVR-9000T) for the first quarter of 2004. This will have an 80Gb hard drive (twice the size of the current Sky+ hard drive) and a JPEG function for storing images from your digital camera. Other functions include Picture in Picture and single-stream scene search. The price of the product has yet to be confirmed.

Other products that Humax has announced:

Two Digital terrestrial set-top boxes – Available now, the F2-1001T (nicknamed The Mouse) costs £60 while the F2-FOX T will set you back around £100. Both are designed to receive Freeview’s 30 or so channels. The FOX T comes with four games and a digital audio output.

Digital terrestrial (Freeview) box with DVD player – Offering MP3/DVD+R/RW playback, the DV-1000T will go on sale in October. The price has yet to be confirmed.

IDTVs – 17 and 30inch LCD screens with built in digital terrestrial tuners are planned for next year.

Digital AV receiver – The AVE-750 is a 7.1 channel receiver compatible with the latest surround sound formats (including Dolby Digital EX6.1 and DTS-ES 6.1 Discrete and Matrix).

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