Feeds
80%
Humax Foxsat HDR

Humax Foxsat-HDR Freesat HD digital video recorder

Record and replay HD

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Security for virtualized datacentres

There are a number of other useful little touches that show Humax has been paying attention to detail. The remote control is crammed with buttons that perform various tasks, and it can work in four different modes, allowing it to control your TV, DVD player and audio system, as well as the Foxsat itself, although you do need to program it with codes listed in the manual first, rather like a ‘universal’ remote.

There’s a slow-motion button that allows you to choose either half, quarter or eighth normal speed, while the fast forward/backward option goes right up to 64x normal speed. You can also add bookmarks to recordings, allowing you to quickly snap back to favourite scenes. We even like the option to adjust the transparency of the on-screen menu display, so that you can still see programmes playing in the background while you fiddle with various menu options.

Humax Foxsat HDR

Channels segmented, Sky style

We have no real complaints about the performance of the Foxsat-HDR. It’s versatile and easy to use, and the ability to record HD programmes without paying a subscription is enormously tempting. The problem is that’s it about £100 more expensive than a comparable Freeview recorder and the extra HD content that would justify the premium is still limited.

If you’re already a Sky subscriber then the recent price cut for its Sky HD box to just £49, plus another £10 per month on top of your existing programme package, is arguably a better deal as you’ll get a wider range of HD channels, although ITV HD isn’t available on Sky. If your area is covered by Virgin’s cable TV services you can get their V+ HD box and BBC HD for £99 plus a £10-per-month subscription. Then, of course, there’s the possibility of Freeview launching its own free-to-air HD channels later this year.

Verdict

If you want to experience – and record - HD television without committing yourself to a monthly subscription then the Foxsat-HDR is probably worth the high initial outlay. It only took a few minutes of Wallace and Gromit in HD to make up our minds for us. However, the combined cost of the recorder and the satellite installation means that Freesat devices such as the Foxsat-HDR are going to have to come down in price quite a bit before they can challenge the popularity of the terrestrial Freeview service. ®

More Set-top Reviews...


Emtec Movie Cube S800

Epson EH-DM2

TVonics DTR-Z500

Western Digital WD TV

Hauppauge myTV Pocket

Security for virtualized datacentres

80%
Humax Foxsat HDR

Humax Foxsat-HDR Freesat HD digital video recorder

The ability to record free-to-air HD programmes is great, but the combined cost of the recorder and satellite will deter many potential customers.
Price: £299 (satellite dish and installation not included) RRP

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft to enter the STRUGGLE of the HUMAN WRIST
It's not just a thumb war, it's total digit war
Tim Cook: The classic iPod HAD to DIE, and this is WHY
Apple, er, couldn’t get the parts for HDD models
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Caterham Seven 160 review: The Raspberry Pi of motoring
Back to driving's basics with a joyously legal high
Back to the ... drawing board: 'Hoverboard' will disappoint Marty McFly wannabes
Buzzing board (and some future apps) leave a lot to be desired
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.