Humax PVR-9300: HDMI, new design and a big hard drive

If you're in the market for a Freeview PVR, you could do a lot worse than consider one of the new Humax boxes, which come stuffed full of features and have some impressive storage capacity

We're pretty big fans of Humax PVRs here. They have proven to be reliable and feature-rich, if a little beastly looking. Happily, there's a new model in town and it's adds a bunch of new features and looks very pretty indeed.

The new model, the Humax PVR-9300, offers the same basic twin tuner system as the 9200 . It's well worth noting that the Humax is one of very few PVRs that allows you to use two tuners to record two channels and watch a third, when that third is on the same multiplex as one of the other two. It sounds complicated, but the upshot is that if you're recording one programme on BBC One and one on ITV1, you can still watch BBC Two or even Channel 4, if you must.

Humax has also decided to jump on the HDMI bandwagon, too. It includes one of the HD outputs to cater to people with HD TVs who prefer to avoid nasty composite video signals. Humax says this output can go up to 720p, but we'll reserve judgement on how it will handle upscaling until we get one for a full review.

In terms of capacity, the new model comes with a generous 320GB of internal storage. Humax reckons you can store around 200 hours of TV with that sort of space, which is more than most people will ever use and plenty for recording Big Brother every night.

While the predecessor of this reciever was sold under the Freeview Playback banner, the Freeview consortium has now adopted the name 'Freeview+' -- clearly borrowed from Sky+. Obviously, the functionality remains the same and the recorders are able to adjust for delays due to overrunning programmes, schedule series recordings and even record a programme split by a breaks for news.

The PVR-9300 will arrive in shops on 1 August and will cost £200. A lower capacity, 150GB version, known as the PVR-9150 will also be available for £150. -Ian Morris

Update: Read our full Humax PVR-9300T review here.

 

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