We do have some small niggles, though. The lack of an LCD display on the SmartBox means that you don’t get much feedback in response to your commands, and this is irritating when you’re first learning how to use it.
BBC iPlayer in action
The remote control is thin and oddly-shaped, with small fiddly buttons. The slim QuickStart guide doesn’t provide as much detail as it could – for instance, it took a while to figure out how to switch back to the live broadcast after using the ‘live pause’ option.
Versatile, but at a cost
Despite those minor annoyances, the SmartBox 8000 works well and is an attractive option if you’re looking for a Freeview box that lets you go beyond the standard selection of Freeview channels. It’s a little more expensive than some of its rivals – you can get twice the storage space from a number of similarly-priced Freeview recorders – but the BBC iPlayer adds to its value, while the option of dipping into the Sky Player every now and then will appeal to a lot of people who might be reluctant to sign up to Sky’s full satellite service. Its main weakness is the lack of Freeview HD channels, so some people may prefer to pay the extra for the HD model that should also be hitting the shelves now. ®
More Freeview Gear Reviews…
Freeview HD boxes
IPVision FetchTV SmartBox 8000 DVR
They want my credit card details?
Then they can chuff right off.
WTF? Why can't these idiots make shit that works for this kind of money?? IPVision (and Jobs haha) I'm looking at YOU!
8320HD recordings locking up
Yes, the 8320HD has a annoying habit of freezing/locking up.
On my Humax...
padding the recordings cancels the ability to series link. So I ditched padding (which never really worked o the Umax anyway) and I haven't missed an ending since.
@Picked up the 8320HD myself
Me too - I'm liking it as my old Humax is getting crankier by the week. Except:
I find the handset a bit fiddly and unresponsive.
iPlayer, if the content is actually unavailable once play has been pressed (as I sometimes have found it to be on the web), freezes the box up, from which there is no recovery. The only way to reboot is to pull the plug, there's no off switch. Thank you, Flash??
The EPG is annoyingly polluted with ads for FetchTV.
Pause/rewind/forward is not as usable as I'd like. Humax much better (when it works)
Don't think the epg is searchable like the Hummy though :-(
I'm liking the media streaming/networking etc.
There's no need to sign up to anything during setup any more, you do it on the web later.
When I first switched it on it only found 20 channels, but a rescan found them all later (phew!). After I plugged the aerial straight in, not via 2 other devices.
Paris, because she only sort of works, too.
Apart from HD it feels like a £50 box not a £200 one. plus £50 for the (wireless) networking and ability to save to pendrive I guess. So - Jury's kinda out.