A new breed of Freeview Playback PVRs have invaded Stuff towers – and this British-made TVonics box is one of the best.
Those of you who have Sky+ will know that, aside from the stunning array of channels on offer, its competition-crushing feature is ingeniously intuitive ‘Sky Guide’ interface.
By contrast, Freeview PVRs have been plagued by awkward controls and an ugly interface, making TV recording an irksome process. But this TVonics box, one of a new breed of ‘Freeview Playback’ solutions, is promising to smooth the process and ease the headaches of technophobes.
A bit simple
The DVR-150 strips Freeview down to its underpants and constructs a simple yet shrewd interface, accessible by even the most technologically challenged of viewers.
The remote is a clone of the Sky handset, making it easy to use and clever to boot. Introduce it to your TV and DVD remotes, and this handheld chameleon will be able to mimic their signals, rendering them useless.
Boasting ergonomic clarity, the intuitive remote will also be more than happy to provide you with a full eight day TV programme schedule, if you ask it nicely and tickle the EPG button.
The DVR-150 itself is a pleasure to operate too. For £190, the pint-sized, sturdy metallic case boasts two digital tuners and a 160GB hard-drive, which is roomy enough to squeeze in 80 hours of your favourite Top Gear episodes. And it will only take up half as much of your living room compared with its nearest rival, the Humax PVR9200T.
The TVonics also allows you to record one channel whilst watching another, and pause live TV for up to 2 hours. And recording is simply a question of selecting a show of your choice from the neat EPG.
Picture quality is excellent, and reproduced with outstanding accuracy by the recordings. You can’t reduce the recording quality to load more minutes onto the hard-drive, but that just adds to the DVR-150’s simplistic appeal. And with high quality visuals that shame rivals such as Topfield’s TF5800PVR, this is right at the top of our PVR pile.