Goodmans Satellite Receiver and PVR
The Goodmans GFSDTR320HD measures 30x26x4.5cm. The face, like the Grundig, has no visible clock and all that can normally be seen is a red button on the left together with a similar button on the right when recording while the unit is not being tended.
The six sides of the A4 Quick Start Guide4 should be enough to get even the novice user up and running. The 32 page A5 instruction manual has little more detail. The six parts of the first step are connecting your satellite lead/leads to the back of the unit, plugging in the supplied HDMI cable to the unit and then your TV, plugging in the mains lead to the unit and inserting the supplied two ‘AAA’ batteries into the remote and then pressing the standby button on the remote after that everything should be controlled from the screen of your TV.
An eight stage wizard led screens will take you through tuning (very quick) and setting up a PIN to cover adult content. In all this really should be less than five minutes from taking the unit from its box to viewing content.
Freesat + means that you can setup ITV HD content to record in advance to record in HD something that could not be done before. Assuming you have a Dual LMB them you have two satellite leads and this means that you can record two different channels at the same time whilst still watching recorded content from a third program.
The remote control has 40 buttons plus the five for the ubiquitous joystick making 45 in all, during my test period I controlled everything from the remote and never touched the five on the front of the Goodmans machine.
The program guide is worth a mention by default it will show the first eight channels (or eight from the channel you are currently watching with a two line synopsis of the program currently highlighted shown above.
The record screen is slightly different and this shows both recordings made or watched and those due to be recorded this is where you can set it to record a series something that early Freeview units could not be set to do.
You can pause and rewind both live TV and of course recorded TV something I am sure most do to cut out adverts. Rather than take the approach of some units 30 second or 1 minute jumps per press it goes 2x 4x 8x 16x 32x etc so until you are used to it this may mean you spend a lot of time trying to just work out the standard 4 minute break, my advice is don’t go beyond 16x and think ahead. I know there are devices coming that play the whole thing faster showing everything currently this unit uses the show a still frame then another etc which means you need to follow what is happening. Still those old enough to remember video recorders know to see anything through the static was an achievement so don’t knock the current technology.
I was happy with the sound and video both in SD and HD. In the case of the recently reviewed Grundig that was the 500GB unit this unit from Goodmans was the 320GB one but both do the other size model. Remember an HD program will probably take up three times the amount of hard disc space that an SD version will. One big advantage for the sports fan is page 3001 where multiple BBC sports offerings are available, BBC used to have page 301 and page 302, they had to give up page 302 when HD came in. Page 3001 allows multiple sport video feeds where Freeview now only has one feed. As an example during the recent Snooker World Championship both tables were available all day everyday, Freeview only had one and sometimes like Saturday afternoon none when Final Score ruled the wavebands.
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