Sky + for Freeview reviewed

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The Guardian has one of the first reviews of the £250 Digifusion FVRT 100 from Fusion Digitec.

The digital terrestrial decoder/hard disk video recorder is being billed as the Sky + for Freeview viewer as it is the first of its kind to offer an electronic programming guide that stretches beyond giving details of the programes that is currently on and the one coming next.

Read on for the review.

Two years on from the launch of the Sky + satellite decoder/hard disk recorder and bizarrely there still isn’t an equivalent unit for digital terrestrial (Freeview) viewers. That’s because while Sky offers two week’s worth of easy to access on-screen listings, there isn’t a similar universal listings guide for Freeview.

Fusion Digitec aims to change that with the Digifusion FVRT 100 Freeview decoder/hard disk video recorder. It uses its proprietary Multi Guide to deliver seven days worth of programme info to the screen, which users can easily browse and then earmark programmes for recoding.

Like Sky + the FVRT 100 can store up to 40 hours of programming on its 40 Gigabyte hard disk (although the quality isn’t quite as good as its rival) pause, rewind, and forward live TV and let viewers watch one programme while recording another.

While it is fairly simple to use and operate overall the FVRT 100 lacks the simplicity of the Sky+ box, and especially its rival’s remarkably intuitive remote control. Also unlike its satellite equivalent, viewers can’t play catch up by watching a programme from the beginning while they are recording it.

For the time being though, the FVRT 100 is the closest digital terrestrial viewers are going to get to a Sky + of their own.

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