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-   -   Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound? (https://www.digitaltvbanter.co.uk/showthread.php?t=14867)

Ian G Batten December 8th 03 10:10 PM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 

My gut feeling six months ago was that I wanted a Pace Twin Digital.
But ince then, everything I read about it says that the software is as
buggy as hell, regular updates haven't fixed the serious problems, there
are hardware modifications required (the ``audio buzz mod''), the ones
on sale still have March's software even though there's a six week
update cycle, etc, etc. In short, the classic British ``ISO 9001 ---
We've Heard Of It'' attitude to quality. I gather there's an update due
out this weekend, so if I move quickly I could spend 210 quid and take
pot luck on the software. But do I want to buy a box whose
manufacturers appear to struggle to support it?

I gather there are alternatives, but they seem equally dubious. The
Nokia 260T doesn't seem to be out in the UK. I've never heard of Fusion
or Humax, so I can't say I can work up a lot of enthusiasm for them
without strong advice. The serious vendors seem to be staying out of
the market right now.

I have decent Freeview reception --- Grundig thingie working quite
happily for the past eighteen months --- so my concern is simply to get
a hard disk recorder. Should I wait until one comes long that's not
crap? Presumably once the niche players have struggled for a while SOny
or someone will launch. Is it worth chancing the Pace one, even if the
software is a nightmare? And is there a Freeview DVD-burner on the
horizon? A DMR-HS2 but for Freeview would be dandy, thanks.

ian



Vic December 9th 03 10:15 AM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 
"Ian G Batten" wrote in message
...

My gut feeling six months ago was that I wanted a Pace Twin Digital.
But ince then, everything I read about it says that the software is as
buggy as hell, regular updates haven't fixed the serious problems, there
are hardware modifications required (the ``audio buzz mod''), the ones
on sale still have March's software even though there's a six week
update cycle, etc, etc. In short, the classic British ``ISO 9001 ---
We've Heard Of It'' attitude to quality. I gather there's an update due
out this weekend, so if I move quickly I could spend 210 quid and take
pot luck on the software. But do I want to buy a box whose
manufacturers appear to struggle to support it?


I have the Pace Twin and although there are bugs in the software, I find these
fairly minor in normal operation. I would certainly not call it "buggy as hell".
The major ones (like the soft focus in the centre of the picture) have been
sorted with the last update and there is another update due on Saturday 13th
December.

It all comes down to what you expect to do with it. We do a lot of time-shift
viewing because we're out a lot, and for that it's ideal. The ability to program
weekly or daily repeat recording for a set number of episodes is great. The
quality is good (much better than VHS) because it records the incoming data
stream, so the pictures off the disk look identical to ones received off-air.
The twin tuners are an excellent idea, and so is the ability to pause live
viewing.

The EPG is rubbish, but that is not Pace's fault - Freeview don't transmit it.
In the 3 months that I've had the Twin, it has locked up twice (required to pe
unpowered and then powered up again) but it has never lost a recording or failed
to record.

The 10hr disk size is not too much of a drawback, and you can always incresase
it if you feel so inclined - this has been documented here some time ago.

Maybe other users have had bad experiences, but as I say, in normal day to day
use, it is perfectly satisfactory.

Vic



Patrick Navin December 9th 03 10:16 AM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 
Ian G Batten wrote:

My gut feeling six months ago was that I wanted a Pace Twin Digital.
But ince then, everything I read about it says that the software is as
buggy as hell, regular updates haven't fixed the serious problems, there
are hardware modifications required (the ``audio buzz mod''), the ones
on sale still have March's software even though there's a six week
update cycle, etc, etc. In short, the classic British ``ISO 9001 ---
We've Heard Of It'' attitude to quality. I gather there's an update due
out this weekend, so if I move quickly I could spend 210 quid and take
pot luck on the software. But do I want to buy a box whose
manufacturers appear to struggle to support it?


Whilst I've read the moans and groans, I've also owned a Pace Twn since
May. It has had teething products but I love it. It works, I've only
ever had one missed rcording (in the first month or so) and the picture
quality is great. When the 7 day EPG comes along it'll be even better.
As an ex Tivo owner I gladly sacrifice the Tivo convenience for the
bitstream video qality and the digital audio out.



I gather there are alternatives, but they seem equally dubious. The
Nokia 260T doesn't seem to be out in the UK. I've never heard of Fusion
or Humax, so I can't say I can work up a lot of enthusiasm for them
without strong advice. The serious vendors seem to be staying out of
the market right now.


It's worth noting that these products may be buggy when they first
appear - after they represent each manufacturer's first foray into a DTT
PVR.
Humax are awell respected satellite receiver brand - I'd have no worries
buying their kit - but their current PVR is oly a single tuner model.
Fusion's offering's look good but the PVR's release date keeps slipping
back and they are are part owned by Beko, the Turkish manufacturer of
very low cost TV sets. I've nothing against Beko but they aren't the
first name thatsprings to mind when one is considering quality AV.

I have decent Freeview reception --- Grundig thingie working quite
happily for the past eighteen months --- so my concern is simply to get
a hard disk recorder. Should I wait until one comes long that's not
crap? Presumably once the niche players have struggled for a while SOny
or someone will launch. Is it worth chancing the Pace one, even if the
software is a nightmare? And is there a Freeview DVD-burner on the
horizon? A DMR-HS2 but for Freeview would be dandy, thanks.


Fusion have put back their combined HDD/DVD-R DTT recorder to th end of
next year. To be honest Fusion's ever slipping release schedule makes me
wonder if any of these items will ever appear (though they have finally
shipped their basic DTT receiver).

Right now the choice is the Pace Twin or the Humax P8000T. Both are in
the shops, prices are about 229 for the Twin and 180 for the Humax.
The Twin has two tuners so gets my vote.

--
Patrick

"De-Correction is one of the THX mumbo jumbo thingy mi jig, as will as
tonal correction, bass management, Re-Eq.
Checkout the THX site" an AV 'expert', yesterday.

http://www.patrick.navin.btinternet.co.uk/B834763868/


Brownie December 9th 03 11:30 AM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 

"Patrick Navin" wrote in message
...

Right now the choice is the Pace Twin or the Humax P8000T. Both are in
the shops, prices are about 229 for the Twin and 180 for the Humax.
The Twin has two tuners so gets my vote.


Ian, I was in two minds for weeks trawling the newsgroups and forums. You
end up convinced that the Twin is inoperable.

I've just bought one after discounting the Humax as it didn't even seem to
be able to play and record and it required an 'experiment' from a Humax
engineer to confirm it did. The Pace seems to have a hell of a following.

I've only been using it a few days and 'it just bloody works' despite having
the original software. This weekend brings an over air update.

If you wnat one now the Pace is 'OK'. Quality is great and time shifting is
great. The other posters have said what the issues are. If you don't want
to buy yet then spring, maybe summer will bring 2-3 boxes. I find the 10
hour record time is a little restrictive but to be honest most programmes
are watched and dumped and I can archive to DVD or record straight to DVD
from the same aerial so it's a minor point.



Ric December 9th 03 12:02 PM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 
Am dubious about Pace as my NTL box is pretty crap but I hear good things
about the twin. Just one question, does it allow you to record from any
other sources or will it just do the digital stream? I quite like the idea
that I could record the odd thing off cable (I know I would have to change
the channel myself). Is there any Scart/Analogue ability?

"Patrick Navin" wrote in message
...
Ian G Batten wrote:

My gut feeling six months ago was that I wanted a Pace Twin Digital.
But ince then, everything I read about it says that the software is as
buggy as hell, regular updates haven't fixed the serious problems, there
are hardware modifications required (the ``audio buzz mod''), the ones
on sale still have March's software even though there's a six week
update cycle, etc, etc. In short, the classic British ``ISO 9001 ---
We've Heard Of It'' attitude to quality. I gather there's an update due
out this weekend, so if I move quickly I could spend 210 quid and take
pot luck on the software. But do I want to buy a box whose
manufacturers appear to struggle to support it?


Whilst I've read the moans and groans, I've also owned a Pace Twn since
May. It has had teething products but I love it. It works, I've only
ever had one missed rcording (in the first month or so) and the picture
quality is great. When the 7 day EPG comes along it'll be even better.
As an ex Tivo owner I gladly sacrifice the Tivo convenience for the
bitstream video qality and the digital audio out.



I gather there are alternatives, but they seem equally dubious. The
Nokia 260T doesn't seem to be out in the UK. I've never heard of Fusion
or Humax, so I can't say I can work up a lot of enthusiasm for them
without strong advice. The serious vendors seem to be staying out of
the market right now.


It's worth noting that these products may be buggy when they first
appear - after they represent each manufacturer's first foray into a DTT
PVR.
Humax are awell respected satellite receiver brand - I'd have no worries
buying their kit - but their current PVR is oly a single tuner model.
Fusion's offering's look good but the PVR's release date keeps slipping
back and they are are part owned by Beko, the Turkish manufacturer of
very low cost TV sets. I've nothing against Beko but they aren't the
first name thatsprings to mind when one is considering quality AV.

I have decent Freeview reception --- Grundig thingie working quite
happily for the past eighteen months --- so my concern is simply to get
a hard disk recorder. Should I wait until one comes long that's not
crap? Presumably once the niche players have struggled for a while SOny
or someone will launch. Is it worth chancing the Pace one, even if the
software is a nightmare? And is there a Freeview DVD-burner on the
horizon? A DMR-HS2 but for Freeview would be dandy, thanks.


Fusion have put back their combined HDD/DVD-R DTT recorder to th end of
next year. To be honest Fusion's ever slipping release schedule makes me
wonder if any of these items will ever appear (though they have finally
shipped their basic DTT receiver).

Right now the choice is the Pace Twin or the Humax P8000T. Both are in
the shops, prices are about 229 for the Twin and 180 for the Humax.
The Twin has two tuners so gets my vote.

--
Patrick

"De-Correction is one of the THX mumbo jumbo thingy mi jig, as will as
tonal correction, bass management, Re-Eq.
Checkout the THX site" an AV 'expert', yesterday.

http://www.patrick.navin.btinternet.co.uk/B834763868/




D Mumford December 9th 03 01:12 PM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 
I also have just bought the twin, it works fine, humax are a massive company
in the satellite area and on the continent.
I found their customer support to be poor, also when they bring out a new
product they seemed to leave the older version behind in the way of software
updates.



Patrick Navin December 9th 03 01:47 PM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 
Ric wrote:


"Patrick Navin" wrote in message
...



Right now the choice is the Pace Twin or the Humax P8000T. Both are in
the shops, prices are about 229 for the Twin and 180 for the Humax.
The Twin has two tuners so gets my vote.




Am dubious about Pace as my NTL box is pretty crap but I hear good things
about the twin. Just one question, does it allow you to record from any
other sources or will it just do the digital stream? I quite like

the idea
that I could record the odd thing off cable (I know I would have to

change
the channel myself). Is there any Scart/Analogue ability?


(It makes it much easier to follow if you snip and bottom post) :D

No, there's no analogue recording available - only bitstream from the
internal tuner

--
Patrick

"I did the grabs via a Duomix61 grabber as used by 'security sources'"
"I never grabbed them on a PC mate -they went via IE56575 to a fancy
technical thingie grabber -or something" - un-named Video capture 'expert'


Andrew Hodgson December 9th 03 03:20 PM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 
On Mon, 8 Dec 2003 23:10:16 +0000 (UTC), Ian G Batten
wrote:


My gut feeling six months ago was that I wanted a Pace Twin Digital.
But ince then, everything I read about it says that the software is as
buggy as hell, regular updates haven't fixed the serious problems, there
are hardware modifications required (the ``audio buzz mod''), the ones
on sale still have March's software even though there's a six week
update cycle, etc, etc. In short, the classic British ``ISO 9001 ---
We've Heard Of It'' attitude to quality. I gather there's an update due
out this weekend, so if I move quickly I could spend 210 quid and take
pot luck on the software. But do I want to buy a box whose
manufacturers appear to struggle to support it?


In my experience the support has been very good, and the fixes do work
(I think I have had around 4-5 software upgrades since May). I use it
now mainly for recording the radio services from the Freeview
channels, usually late at night for school programs etc, and then
transfer them to tape for the teachers to use in classrooms. I do
also record the odd bit of TV when I am seriously interested in the
program, otherwise I don't bother. I would get it if you really want
a Freeview PVR.

Andrew.

Paul December 9th 03 03:51 PM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 
I have just bought a humax pvr8000t from dabs.com (154 i think, 184 after
vat and delivery). Ordered it yesterday lunchtime and it was delivered here
to work at 9am this morning. It looks pretty sexy at first glance although
the shiny silver bit at the front is very scuffed, i wonder if dabs are
selling on ex-display models. Ahh well can't be bothered to send it back
i'll just live with it. I did open it up here at work to see if it had a
2.5" HDD or a normal sized one and it seems to be a normal PC HDD (3.5" or
whatever). I'm going to have a play putting a 60GB hdd that i've got kicking
around at home inside it and see if it autoformats it and works. I'll let
you know what i think with the box after i've had a play with it tonight :)

With regards to not being able to watch pre-recorded shows while you are
recording, from what i've heard recently on forums you can if the recording
taking place was scheduled through the EPG, otherwise you can't (eg if it
was scheduled manually). This isn't a big bother for me as i will only
normally be recording things when i'm out of the house.

--
Paul

remove my shirt to email me back :)



Brownie December 9th 03 04:06 PM

Buying a Freeview PVR --- Which? Are Pace as bad as they sound?
 

"Paul" wrote in message
...
I have just bought a humax pvr8000t from dabs.com (154 i think, 184

after
vat and delivery). Ordered it yesterday lunchtime and it was delivered

here
to work at 9am this morning. It looks pretty sexy at first glance although
the shiny silver bit at the front is very scuffed, i wonder if dabs are
selling on ex-display models. Ahh well can't be bothered to send it back
i'll just live with it. I did open it up here at work to see if it had a
2.5" HDD or a normal sized one and it seems to be a normal PC HDD (3.5" or
whatever). I'm going to have a play putting a 60GB hdd that i've got

kicking
around at home inside it and see if it autoformats it and works. I'll let
you know what i think with the box after i've had a play with it tonight

:)

With regards to not being able to watch pre-recorded shows while you are
recording, from what i've heard recently on forums you can if the

recording
taking place was scheduled through the EPG, otherwise you can't (eg if it
was scheduled manually). This isn't a big bother for me as i will only
normally be recording things when i'm out of the house.


I think anyone wanting what is basically a digital video with Freeview tuner
will find the Humax great. If you wish to record radio and/or have a true
Freeview PVR your only choice is a Twin at the moment.





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