How Does A Freeview Box Work?

In its simplest form, a Freeview box is a decoding device. TV channels broadcast their programs in a digital format using similar codes to those used on the PC, internet and DVD players. The Freeview box decodes those signals and translates them into the sound and vision we receive through our TV.

How To Set Up A Freeview Box 

From the second you open the box that your Freeview box is delivered in, you are potentially in contact with more than 70 channels plus 15 HD channels and 30 radio channels. To be able to connect to such a large array of channels sounds like a confusing job, and yet it’s simplicity itself. The equipment you will need to connect to Freeview is as follows: A TV, An Aerial, a Freeview Box and 2 HDMI Cables.

To connect the Freeview to the TV just

  1. Connect the Freeview box to the aerial socket
    Using a HDMI cable plug one end into the input channel on the Freeview box, and the other end into the aerial socket.
  2. Connect the Freeview box to the TV
    Connect another HDMI cable to the output channel on the Freeview box, and plug the other end into the input socket on the TV.
  3. Turn the power on
    Make sure both the TV and the Freeview box are connected to the mains and switch on.
  4. Follow the start up procedure instructions on screen
    The Freeview box will now instruct you on how to connect and set up the system.
  5. Enjoy watching your selection of TV channels
    That’s it – set up complete. 

unless you have Freeview+ or the play, record, pause, rewind service. For that you will need to connect the Freeview box to the internet either by WiFi or ethernet cable.

Indoor Or Outdoor Aerials?

According to the leading aerial fitters, if you are less than 15 miles from a TV transmitter, you can use an indoor aerial. Any further than 15 miles distance between your home and the TV transmitter, and you will need an outdoor aerial. Any outdoor TV aerial should do, but to be sure of the best reception, a high-performance DVB-T2 aerial with an integrated 3G/4G filter is recommended.

In certain areas in the country where TV signals are weaker than others, you might find it beneficial to install an aerial signal booster. These connect the HDMI connection to the aerial socket to another connector( that’s powered by electricity to boost the signal) and then to the Freeview box. It’s an inline power booster to improve on signal strength and quality.

Why The Need For Digital TV?

Way back in the 1920s when television was first invented, television signals were transmitted through the air in a similar way to radio waves. This first system was called analog, and each station had a single frequency to transmit its channel through. The problem with this system was the signal can become weak, causing poor sound quality, and poor images. Who remembers watching TV with “ghost” images and snowy interference on the screen.

How Does Digital TV Work?

Digital signals transmit bundles of compressed data in much the same way as computer codes work.  Using a binary code prevents the signals from interference and signal loss. Digital signals use less bandwidth than analog signals, you can send 4 digital signals in the space 1 analog signal would require. As a result of this a television company can broadcast more channels including HD over the same space. Giving you more choice and a better signal quality.

Digital signals can be broadcast in HD widescreen (16:9) format. This gives you the experience of cinema style quality and screen size at home. That’s why old films shown on modern TVs have the black bands surrounding them.

TV Remote

The Benefits Of A Freeview Box

Freeview set top boxes are becoming the most popular way to access digital TV in the UK. Here are some of the main benefits.

Cheap To Buy

A Freeview set top box can be bought for as little as £20, of course there are more expensive boxes available and this is one of those situations where you get what you pay for. That said the most expensive Freeview box is around £150 and that does pretty much everything.

No Other Costs

After you purchase the box, you have finished paying. There are no monthly subscription fees or any other outlays.

Easy To Install

Just connect the box to the aerial, and the TV and turn it on. The box will install all the channels, etc.

Large Choice Of Channels

With over 70 channels, around 15 HD channels and over 30 radio channels there is always something to keep you entertained on Freeview.

Easy To Update

Every so often, Freeview will introduce an upgrade. The Freeview box will upgrade itself, no hassle and nothing to learn how to program.

Freedom Of Choice

With no contracts and no subscription fees, you can move on to another type of TV signal supplier whenever you like. With no prospects of being in breach of contract.

Considering Getting A Freeview Box For Your Home?

If you’re now thinking about getting a freeview box for your home, be sure to check out our buyers guide here that explains all the things you should know before buying a freeview box.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you need an aerial for a Freeview box?

You do need an aerial for a Freeview box. Unless your aerial is very old or damaged, your existing aerial will be sufficient.

Can you use an indoor aerial for Freeview?

You can use an indoor aerial for Freeview but only if you are within 15 miles of the Transmitter. Anything over 15 miles and you will need an outdoor aerial.

Can you record live TV on all Freeview boxes?

You can only record live TV if you have an internet connection on your Freeview and your box is compatible.

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