> Getting Television Right

Getting Television Right

Posted on Sunday, November 26, 2006 | No Comments

I am not a big fan of television. It can waste a lot of time when one could be doing something so much better. Yet there is some good things to watch. Years ago I saw the Tivo in America. Its a VCR on steroids. Essentially it records to hard disk rather than tape and manages your recording schedule. It took a while for such technology to make it to Australia but eventually it did.

Introducing the Topfield set-top box which is a hard disk TV recorder that works in Australia. The good thing is that its a digital tuner so you get great picture quality. There are two tuners inside so you can watch something whilst recording something else or record two programs at the same time.

Now the big thing that made the Tivo such a popular product was its integrated TV guide. The Toppy (the common name for Topfield units) does not have a program guide service included. Two solutions are available. The first is IceTV which is a commercial solution, that means you get reliability and accuracy. The seconds is TEDS which is a free product (you can get some extra features at a cost) which works just as well.

With an up to date program guide, two tuners and a massive amount of record time a Toppy is a great way to watch TV. Record the regular shows you want to watch. Watch them when its convenient and skip the adds.

Does a Toppy mean you watch more TV, I have not found so. What it does do is allow you to watch better shows rather than just watching whatever rubbish is on when you want to watch something.

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