DVR Reviews

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Dish Hopper with Sling

Dish has upgraded its kangaroo-themed DVR with a faster 1,305MHz Broadcom processor, added Wi-Fi, integrated Slingbox, and served up a new feature called Hopper Transfers that allows you to transfer recorded programming to your iPad for offline viewing.

Freesat+ HD with free time

The Humax HDR-1000S Freesat+ HD box with free time impresses with its easy-to-use interface and strong recording features. The backwards-in-time EPG works well but the on-demand services are not as tightly integrated as on YouView. It needs more service providers to come on board and I'd like to see the EPG populate faster and playback of on-demand programmes to start up quicker.

Simple.TV by Silicondust

Simple.TV's innovative over-the-air DVR solution is far from perfect, but it's a decent budget option if you can't afford a TiVo Premiere.

Foxtel iQHD

A first-class HD set-top box, this is the quintessential path to getting full value out of a Foxtel subscription.

TiVo Premiere 4

The Premiere 4 has all the features of the XL4, but with a quarter of its storage space.

Editors' Choice

YouView

It's taken an age to arrive, but the Humax DTR-T1000 shows that YouView was worth the wait. Its excellent user interface seamlessly combines on-demand and broadcast TV, while digital TV recording features are first class. It's pricey and is missing a few bells and whistles that would make it perfect, but it's still easy to recommend.

Topfield TRF-2460 Masterpiece HD Plus

The TRF-2460 does what it's set out to do well and the Ice TV feature is handy, but the almost identically specified TRF-7170 undercuts it on price by a handy margin.

Telstra T-Box

Telstra's T-Box is a great storefront for BigPond Movies, but it is seriously lacking as a PVR and as the central component in a home theatre.

TiVo Premiere XL4

The TiVo Premiere Elite might be a luxury, but it's definitely a luxury worth paying for.

Topfield TRF-7170

The TRF-7170 is a fully featured 1TB twin tuner PVR that does its job — just don't expect any servings of panache.

TiVo XL

Every time an American late night comedian name checks TiVo, a pang of unrequited techno-lust flashes through our system. Will the new TiVo XL fix all that?

Optus MeTV with Fetch

The new Optus MeTV with Fetch marries a three-tuner HD PVR with the ability to stream and store on-demand movies and TV series for the low, low price of AU$9.95 per month.

Humax HDR-7500T

Humax's HDR-7500T is a solid performer if you're after a PVR, but for ease of use it's still got a long way to go to unseat TiVo.

Humax PVR-9150T

The Humax PVR-9150T is a no-frills, standard-definition Freeview recorder for those still enslaved by Scart. It's dull, but it's quiet and it does what it says on the tin.

TVonics DTR-Z500HD

The TVonics DTR-Z500HD is a fast and funky Freeview HD digital recorder. Supremely easy to use, it's an ideal choice if you're upgrading from analogue TV. While there are some standard-definition recording-quality issues, its hi-def performance is terrific.

Virgin Media TiVo

TiVo is a must-have upgrade if you currently get your TV through Virgin Media and want to continue doing so, or if you want the most powerful PVR on the market. For everyone else, there's still much work to be done on the software before we can recommend it as a reason to switch TV providers.

Sharp TUT2HR32

Sharp's TUT2HR32 Freeview+HD recorder ticks the right boxes, with twin HD tuners, a 320GB hard drive and bright, colourful interface. Unfortunately, it also generates more fan noise than a Take That concert.

Toshiba HDR5010

Toshiba's HDR5010 does everything a Freeview HD digital TV recorder should do, without fuss or fanfare. It's intuitive to use, has a generous hard drive and is well priced at around £200. It's just the ticket if you want a box to record dramas, not create them.

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