Can I use freeview from a digital cable supply?

  watfordwarrior 10:25 06 Dec 2007

I currently have my tv channels supplied by NTL/Virgin cable which is connected to a digital box they fitted. I want to transfer old home videos onto DVD and also want the option of watching one channel and recording another which I cannot do at present. I had my eye on a Panasonic Video/DVD recorder combi that the sales man in John Lewis assured me would be ok for this. I followed the instructions for setup exactly but the message keeps coming up no channels found? Can anyone help?

  Kemistri 12:20 06 Dec 2007

Freeview uses an aerial only. As far as I am aware, it would not be in the slightest bit compatible with a cable signal. I take it that you no longer have an aerial installed in/on your property?

  watfordwarrior 12:45 06 Dec 2007

I do still have an aerial but moved to cable some years ago due to the poor reception. I still do not understand why it would not see the cable channels. Do you think the unit is not compatible?

  Kemistri 14:08 06 Dec 2007

"As far as I am aware, it would not be in the slightest bit compatible with a cable signal" - and why would it? Indeed, would it even be technically possible without creating a box with two types of tuner, one for Freeview and one for cable? I can't imagine that it would.

  anchor 15:06 06 Dec 2007

What I would do is to speak to a local aerial installer, and ask if it would be possible to fit a new external aerial that would give good reception on Freeview. This would enable your new Panasonic recorder to function normally.

Being local, they would know the situation.

Perhaps the salesman at John Lewis did not realise that you only had cable TV. Did you tell him that you did not have a aerial?.

  Fellsider 16:45 14 Dec 2007

Virgin do their V+box which is similar to Sky+
You can record two channels while watching a third.

As for recording home video to DVDs, you would need a separate video / DVD combi (The Panasonic mentioned should suffice) if this also has a scart input that could be connected to the V+ box output and the video/DVD output scart connected to the TV.

  v1asco 18:58 15 Dec 2007

You can also watch the usual BBc & itv channels without going through your digital channel.

Re-tune your tv and you will get the above + ntl channel. This is channel 6 on my tv. Do the same with your recorder. You will be able to watch say BBc1 and record via ntl, or watch ntl and record BBC1. This has worked fine for every person I know that has tried it.

You will not be able to record any of the extra channels and watch another though. (for instance watch sci-fi and record bravo).

I also have my tv tuned into my outside aerial, just in case virgin goes down.

My daughter lives in a weak signal area and her digital reception is superior to analogue. Try plugging your old aerial into the freeview box and retune. It worked for her on an indoor aerial.

Good luck.

  jim98 19:51 02 Jan 2008

I'm brand new to the forum and was looking for exactly this question, so thanks everyone. Bugle please excuse my ignorance but what would be the connections set-up i.e. which leads to which? I am just about to buy a new tv and dvd/video and need it set up so I can record cable whilst watching BBC1 etc or vice versa.


  Stuartli 20:49 02 Jan 2008

>>My daughter lives in a weak signal area and her digital reception is superior to analogue>>

That absolutely amazes me...:-)

  v1asco 21:21 03 Jan 2008

You are not the only one. I spent an eternity trying to tune in the analogue, gave up after moving the aerial all over the room, plonked the aerial on top of her wardrobe and tried digital. She gets everything except sky 3 and a weak itv3. We have left well alone. She has piped ntl into her room but no external aerial, and does not wish to take out a contract.

jim 98,

sorry, can't really answer your question, better to ask the shop. You may need a twin tuner on your freeview. Unless you actually wnat to record on to a DVD, this one is quite good click here . If your new TV has freeview then you will be able to watch freeview on your TV AND record 2 programmes on the freeview box. Hope this helps.

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