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Looking to record digital TV? Chances are you either have a VHS video recorder, a DVD recorder, or a hard-disk recorder (known as a PVR).
PVRs: These are set-top boxes that have a built-in hard disk. They record onto the disk, not onto tape. Most PVRs are digital-ready. Satellite viewers can use the Sky+ box or a Freesat PVR, and Cable viewers can use the Virgin V+ box. Otherwise, there are PVRs with built-in Freeview receivers.
Video recorders: Videotape is slowly being phased out. Most VHS video recorders don't have Freeview, so will only be able to record after the switchover if they're connected to a digital set-top box (Freeview, Sky, Virgin, BT Vision, etc) via a SCART lead. Help on using a Video recorder.
DVD recorders: These will have either an analogue or a digital tuner built-in. Ones with a digital receiver can record Freeview when connected to a TV aerial (provided you're in a Freeview coverage area). Regardless of whether your recorder has analogue or digital built-in, it will still be able to record from a connected digital set-top box (e.g. Freeview, Sky, Cable or BT Vision) via a SCART lead.
Connecting in this way can limit you to only being able to record whatever you're watching - not record one digital channel whilst watching another.
One other problem is timed recording. You have to make sure the set-top box is tuned to the right channel, so that when the recorder starts recording, it gets the right show.
One option is to get a separate set-top box to connect to your recorder - so you can record a different channel to the one you're watching. A better option may be to get yourself a PVR (hard-disk recorder) - see below.
Some Digital TV sets with a built-in Freeview tuner support sending the TV's Freeview output via SCART socket to a connected DVD or VHS recorder. You should check your digital TV's manual to see how to get the Freeview output connected to a recorder.
Assuming your Digital TV supports sending Freeview via SCART, here's how to record:
There is a limitation with this option - you'll only be able to record whatever TV channel the TV is set to. To record one channel to VHS/DVD while watching another, you may want to consider getting a Freeview set-top box for connection to your recorder.
The most flexible option for recording digital TV is to get yourself a PVR.
Hard-disk recorders (PVRs) are great, and with video tape now being phased out - they offer a great way of recording and watching telly.
Another option is to consider getting a DVD recorder with a built-in Freeview receiver at some point before the analogue service gets switched off, or to look at a hard-disk recorder that allows you to record one channel while watching another.
For help on choosing a DVD Recorder suitable for the Digital Switch, see the FrequencyCast DVD Recorder page.
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