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18-07-2012, 18:40   #1
Trapapony
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Saorview and Me (Or What I've Learnt)

Hello,
I recently integrated a Saorview set-top box into my TV setup and thought it might be useful to others to summarise what I learnt. I hope this post complements the other (useful) ones here on the same topic. It's a bit long but then it's aimed at novices.

Disclaimer: I'm not an expert, just someone who has always managed to successfully connect his various devices together. Feel free to correct any mistakes I make or fill in any knowledge gaps.

By the way, this is my first post on boards.ie [polite round of applause?]

My pre-existing setup consisted of fairly old kit that predated Saorview and HDMI (and possibly the Easter Rising):
- roof aerial to pick up Irish TV channels
- Astra satellite dish for UK Freeview channels
- Sony TV (of about the same shape, size and weight as an adult pig)
- Grundig satellite receiver with UK Freeview card
- LG video-cassette recorder (VCR) to record any of the above channels
These were all daisy-chained together with coaxial cable using RF out and aerial in/out sockets. I believe the setup would be similar if you replaced the VCR with a DVD recorder (DVDR).

So I bought a Vision VST8010 set-top box for Saorview (E55 from Woodies). I hoped that introducing it would be as easy as just adding this new link to the end of the chain. How wrong I was.

After much to-ing and fro-ing I found two ways to successfully integrate it into my system. Method 1 is simpler and relies on a USB memory stick to record Saorview programmes. Method 2 is more complicated but you end up being able to record Saorview channels with your VCR/DVDR.

Method 1
a) unplug everything from the mains
b) remove the aerial feed from the satellite receiver and stick it into "antenna in" of the Saorview box.
c) use a scart cable to connect the "tv scart" output of the Saorview box to one of the scart inputs of the TV (called "scart 2" on mine)
d) plug everything in again
e) use the TV remote to go to the relevant scart channel on your TV
f) follow the "First time installation" instructions that appear. At the end of this the digital Saorview channels will be tuned in to the Saorview box. To change Saorview channels use the Saorview box remote, not any other.
g) if you have any audio/video problems at this stage try the other scart input on the TV (after unplugging everything first)
h) there's a USB port on the back of the Saorview box that will take a memory stick, on to which you can record your programmes - the manual says 1 hour of TV uses about 2Gb of memory so I would recommend using at least an 8Gb stick. Instructions on how to record are also in the manual.
i) from now on you will always use this (scart) TV channel to watch Saorview channels; your VCR/DVDR and satellite channels will be where they always were on the TV.
j) you have lost your Irish analogue channels both from your TV and your VCR/DVDR but remember they are going off-air anyway in October. If you want them back until then just (after unplugging everything first) connect a coaxial cable from the "antenna out" of the Saorview box to the aerial input of the satellite receiver
k) if your TV has a HDMI input (mine doesn't) then use that, not scart. My set-top box came with a HDMI cable for this purpose.

Expenditure: 1 Saorview set-top box, 1 short scart cable, 1 short coaxial cable, 1 USB memory stick.
Note: instead of a USB memory stick you can use a portable disk drive which gives more storage capacity.

Method 2
a) unplug everything from the mains
b) remove the aerial feed from the satellite receiver and stick it into "antenna in" of the Saorview box.
c) use a scart cable to connect the "tv scart" output of the Saorview box to the scart input of the VCR/DVDR (called "scart AV2 decoder" on mine).
d) plug everything in again
e) use the TV remote to go to the VCR/DVDR channel. Use the VCR/DVDR remote to select the relevant scart channel (called "AV2" on mine) which is now your Saorview channel. If you can't find this try going to channel 1 and move downwards through the channels until you hit it.
f) follow the "First time installation" instructions that appear. At the end of this the digital Saorview channels will be tuned in to the Saorview box. To change Saorview channels use the Saorview box remote, not any other.
g) from now on you will always use this VCR/DVDR channel to watch Saorview channels; your satellite channels will be where they always were on the TV.
h) you have lost your Irish analogue channels both from your TV and your VCR/DVDR but remember they are going off-air anyway in October. If you want them back until then just (after unplugging everything first) connect a coaxial cable from the "antenna out" of the Saorview box to the aerial input of the satellite receiver

Expenditure: 1 Saorview set-top box, 1 short scart cable, 1 short coaxial cable.
Note: even if you go with Method 2 it's worth having the USB memory stick in the set-top box so that you can pause live (Saorview) TV if you want to ("time-shifting"). Also it's very simple to set up a recording timer from the programme guide that comes with Saorview.

Other points to note:
* always disconnect from the mains before rearranging connections.
* the scart inputs on my TV are not identical; if one doesn't work for you try the other
* if you have a Saorview TV then you don't need the Saorview set-top box, the TV decodes the digital signal for you.
* RTFM Read the flippin' manual. If you want to be independent of greedy installers (see below), familiarise yourself with the manual that comes with each device. It's well worth it.

The Sunday Times ran an article recently about installing Saorview to the 250,000 homes that use an aerial. It said there's a goldrush on at the moment among "installers" trying to part the innocent from their cash. If you must get a "professional" to help you, the things to watch out for are:

* Someone charging you to tune in the set-top box. Waste of money, the box will gently guide you through this process when it's first switched on.
* Someone telling you you need a new aerial. You don't, Saorview comes through the same one as the current analogue service. And there's no such thing as a "digital aerial."
They may try to spin it as "necessary to guarantee our work" or "necessary for a good, crisp picture" but don't fall for either piece of nonsense.
* Someone telling you you need a new combination set-top box (If you have satellite) for both Saorview and satellite. These are available but you don't NEED one. They will also try to add on a new aerial, dish, cabling and brackets when in fact you only need a few cables.
* Someone charging an arm and a leg merely to connect a Saorview box that you have already bought. I hope my instructions above will help people to do it themselves.

The article investigated some online installation companies including mytv.ie and digitalswitchover.ie.

Hope this helps a few people.
Trap
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18-07-2012, 20:14   #2
Ronnie Raygun
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trapapony View Post
* Someone telling you you need a new aerial. You don't, Saorview comes through the same one as the current analogue service.
Not necessarily true, some people may only have VHF aerials & some may be receiving analogue from a local relay station that won't transmit Saorview, so they'll usually require a new aerial & alignment to a different transmitter (& hope they don't need Saorsat).
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18-07-2012, 22:19   #3
The Cush
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trapapony View Post
- Astra satellite dish for UK Freeview channels

- Grundig satellite receiver with UK Freeview card
Freeview is the terrestrial UK equivalent to our terrestrial Saorview service, using an aerial. Available in some parts of Ireland with an aerial pointing at a UK transmitter.
Using a satellite dish dish they are referred to as Freesat or free-to-air satellite channels depending on which type of satellite receiver you use to receive them. People regularly confuse the terminology.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trapapony View Post
* Someone telling you you need a new aerial. You don't, Saorview comes through the same one as the current analogue service. And there's no such thing as a "digital aerial."
Basic advice is to test your existing aerial with a Saorview receiver first before replacing or realigning it. If it works - great, if not follow Saorview's advice on aerials
Quote:
Use these simple tests to check if your aerial will receive SAORVIEW:

1. If you currently get RTÉ One, RTÉ Two, TV3 and TG4 with your aerial then your aerial is most likely fine and is pointing in the right direction.

2. If you currently receive RTÉ One, RTÉ Two and TG4 through your aerial but do not receive TV3 then your aerial is most likely fine but it may be pointing in the wrong direction. [*see additional note below]

3. If you only receive RTÉ One and RTÉ Two through your aerial and do not receive TV3 and TG4 then you probably need a new UHF aerial pointed at the best transmission site for your area.

http://www.saorview.ie/make-the-swit...-check-aerial/
* some transmitters that carry RTÉ & TG4 only and no TV3 will also carry the Saorview channels so the existing aerial should be OK. 13 of these transmitters won't come online until Oct 1st. Use the Saorview coverage checker to find your recommended Saorview transmitter.
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25-07-2012, 18:39   #4
Trapapony
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Thanks

Told you I wasn't an expert!
Thanks to Mssrs Raygun/Reagan, Cush and any future posters for their corrections/additions.
Trap
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03-08-2012, 18:14   #5
Trapapony
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Recording Issue

I have been using the Saorview set-top box (Vision VST8010 model) for a few weeks now and wanted to add a postscript to my original post.

It's a complaint about using the USB memory stick to record Saorview programmes. The device records and plays back OK. The problem arises when you stop watching, say a film, part-way thorugh and come back to it the next day. The box does not know where you stopped so you need to fast-forward to that point yourself before you can resume your viewing. Even my old DVD player allows you to take up watching a DVD where you left off. It is a serious shortcoming as far as I'm concerned and discourages me from using the recording facility. Perhaps other set-top boxes don't have this problem - I don't know.

Trap
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14-10-2012, 15:57   #6
orlaithd12
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Hi,
We bought a Triax Tr 212 settop box, which is a twin tuner, allowing recording of one channel while watching any other channel.
We plugged it in to our old television last night, added our free to air Aldi satellite receiver, our Samsung DVD HDD Recorder/Player, and all is fine.

The big problem I have is that even though the DVD is working, i.e. showing all the menus etc., there are no channels showing, and when I go into the digital scan option, which is in addition to the analogue scan I used before, it isnt locating any channels at all.

Is this how I should be tuning in the Saorview channels or is there another way, as I would really love to be able to continue using the DVD recorder, rather than the USB option, as it has the Hard Drive I need and it is only 2 years old!!!

Please help?
Thanks a lot,
Orlaith
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14-10-2012, 16:01   #7
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The Saorview box cannot convert the the DVD recorder to tune in the Saorview channels. You need to connect the Saorview box to the DVD player by Scart or HDMI and record over that.

Which analogue channels are you getting?

Check which transmitter you should be using by putting your address in on this page http://www.saorview.ie/make-the-switch/coverage-map/

Last edited by MarkK; 14-10-2012 at 16:03.
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14-10-2012, 16:17   #8
orlaithd12
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I only know so much about these things I'm afraid, I have all the Saorview channels on the tv, no problem, no analogue channels.
The Set Top Box is connected to the DVD Recorder via a scart lead, but when the DVD channel on the Tv which is EXT2,is on, it is blank until you select the DVD Menu on its remote?
If I cant scan for the Saorview cannels on the DVD, how can I record the channels onto it? P.S. whats an external channel?
Thanks again, Orlaith
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14-10-2012, 16:47   #9
Peter Rhea
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Does the digital channel scan of the DVD recorder not find anything? Even radio channels? Do you still have the aerial connected to it?
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14-10-2012, 16:58   #10
orlaithd12
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I'll have to get back to u later when I quiz my husband, should the aerial be connected ? As far as I know the aerial is connected to the set top box. I just had a look and there is another cable like an aerial cable, but black connected to the television.Not sure what that is?
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14-10-2012, 17:00   #11
The Cush
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orlaithd12 View Post
I only know so much about these things I'm afraid, I have all the Saorview channels on the tv, no problem, no analogue channels.
The Set Top Box is connected to the DVD Recorder via a scart lead, but when the DVD channel on the Tv which is EXT2,is on, it is blank until you select the DVD Menu on its remote?
If I cant scan for the Saorview cannels on the DVD, how can I record the channels onto it? P.S. whats an external channel?
Thanks again, Orlaith
With the Saorview receiver switched on and connected to the DVD recorder via scart. Select the DVD on the TV (ext 2). On the DVD remote control there should be a button identified as "input" or "source", press the button until the correct input for the Saorview receiver is selected, once you select the correct input you will see the Saorview channels from the receiver on the TV via the DVD recorder and this will allow you to record the Saorview channels. I hope this is clear, if not post again.
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14-10-2012, 17:02   #12
orlaithd12
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No, the aerial is connected to the Set Top Box, there is another black cable connected form the DVD to the television, not sure what that is?
The digital scan on the DVD found neither tv or radio channels.
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14-10-2012, 17:06   #13
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can someone tell me do l need a saor view box for every tv in the house? & can you record something & watch something else on a different channel? lf l wanna record a programme l can't change channels - such a pain in the asre!
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14-10-2012, 17:12   #14
The Cush
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can someone tell me do l need a saor view box for every tv in the house? & can you record something & watch something else on a different channel? lf l wanna record a programme l can't change channels - such a pain in the asre!
Saorview receiver required for each TV that doesn't have it own built in Saorview tuner. Almost all Saorview set top boxes are single tuner so you can only watch one or record one to a recorder of some sort.

The one mentioned above by orlaithd12, the Triax TR212 is a twin tuner model so that you can watch one record one to an external recorder.

There is a Walker PVR recorder on the way before Christmas which will allow you to record onto an in built hard drive.

Last edited by The Cush; 14-10-2012 at 17:15.
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14-10-2012, 17:14   #15
orlaithd12
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With the Saorview receiver switched on and connected to the DVD recorder via scart. Select the DVD on the TV (ext 2). On the DVD remote control there should be a button identified as "input" or "source", press the button until the correct input for the Saorview receiver is selected, once you select the correct input you will see the Saorview channels from the receiver on the TV via the DVD recorder and this will allow you to record the Saorview channels. I hope this is clear, if not post again.
At the moment the Saorview channels are coming in on the EXT 2 channel on the tv.
When I turn on the DVD Recorder it also is appearing on the EXT 2 channel, and when I press the Source button the DVD recorder nothing happens, there is no channel move at all? Is this because the Saorview and The DVD are on the same channel??
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