Now that the home entertainment market has moved towards streaming video services and Blu-ray content, there has never been a better time to convert DVD collections to digital.
Bush Freeview High Definition Set Top Box
A simple set top box that uses the Freeview program guide
- Works just as you'd expect
- Remote control is great for digital TV newbies
- A little too expensive just for Freeview compliance
The Bush Freeview High Definition Set Top Box is a simple digital TV receiver that doesn't have any novelty features or superfluous extra inclusions. It's a good choice for anyone who just wants a simple and snappy digital TV set top box, but it is slightly overpriced given its Spartan specifications.
Price$ 119.00 (AUD)
The Bush Freeview High Definition Set Top Box is a digital TV receiver — you hook it up to your old analog TV to receive digital TV broadcasts, so you don’t have to buy an entire new TV when analog TV switches off around Australia.
Bush Freeview High Definition Set Top Box: Design and setup
The Bush Freeview High Definition Set Top Box is, in a word, simple. The front of the set top box is simple and only displays the time or channel number when powered on. There’s a small power button on the right hand side of the set top box, and all other controls can be found on the remote.
The remote is simple and well laid out — we like the use of different coloured grey, green and black buttons as a visual cue. The remote’s basic grid layout also helps first-time users remember where controls are, and the prominent placement of the electronic program guide button is useful.
The reason this set top box is $40 or $50 more expensive than most other high definition set top boxes on the market is its Freeview compliance. A Freeview-labeled set top box uses an MPEG-4 tuner and is guaranteed to work now and in the future, as well as using an electronic program guide with a little extra info that’s specific to Freeview. While this gives nice peace of mind that you won’t have to buy another set top box in the future, you can buy a non-compliant set top box that will work just fine for around half the price of the Bush Freeview High Definition Set Top Box — in fact, Bush makes one for just under $70.
Bush Freeview High Definition Set Top Box: Performance and price
The Freeview High Definition Set Top Box from Bush picked up all of our Sydney metropolitan stations — 23 in total including duplicates — and displayed them all with no loss of reception or interference. Changing channels happens quickly with a delay of less than two seconds between entering a channel number and having it displayed on the screen.
The electronic program guide of the Bush Freeview High Definition Set Top Box is probably its most impressive feature. It loads quickly, with listing data for each set of channels visible as you navigate — there’s no wait for the set top box to gather any information. The guide’s information is also accurate for up-to-the-minute changes for program broadcasts, so you can see if a channel is running late (and they usually are).
Bush Freeview High Definition Set Top Box: Conclusion
Bush’s Freeview High Definition Set Top Box works exactly as it purports to — it picks up all the available digital TV stations, lets you organise them, shows a comprehensive electronic program guide — and does little else. We think it’s too expensive just for the Freeview branding, though — we’d recommend you strongly consider whether you need that logo and the small amount of extra weight it carries, and decide whether you think it’s worth an extra $50 over a competing product from the same company.
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