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Broadband TV for Luddites

shermans
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Broadband TV for Luddites

Many people will regard us as Luddites because we have no television.  When it went digital, we threw the old set out and preferred not to replace it.  Being retired, I really do not know how I ever had time to watch it now ! I certainly do not miss it. I also take great pleasure in winding 'TV Licencing' up - I get threatening letters ever week which I ignore, and long for them to visit me so I can have a go !  No doubt I should be sympathetic but having told them years ago that i do not have a television, I resent the fact that they keep bombarding me, so they deserve it !

 

Anyway, we now have a lodger who wants to have television and is willing to pay the licence, so I have to do something about it.  We live in an area of very poor TV reception, and the old external aerial never worked well, even with a booster.  Having an old cottage, I am reluctant to have to spoil the facade with a satellite dish of any sort.  So all that leaves is perhaps broadband TV.

Can anyone enlighten me about what this would entail.  I have Plusnet fibre - we are rural remote, so the choice is limited, but we get about 20 Mbps.  We use the internet frequently but we are not heavy users. So the questions are :

1. Is 20 Mbps sufficient for TV or will it slow down our own internet use ?  As we will not be watching TV, we understandably do not want to degrade our own internet access when the lodger is watching it.

2. What does broadband TV involve in the way of hardware ?

3. Does it require hard-wiring or does it run off WiFi ?  I should mention that being an old house with very thick walls everywhere, normal WiFi coverage is very difficult and the solution has been to install 4 slave WiFi routers connected by ethernet cable throughout the house in addition to the master Plusnet Hub One.  That works perfectly, and WiFi connection speeds are the same throughout the house as a result.  Installing yet another ethernet circuit to deliver TV only would be a pain in the neck, although as we have Cat 5 cable, I could presumably use spare twisted pairs in the existing cable if necessary.

I would appreciate any advice that could be offered.

Thanks

 

 

28 REPLIES 28
Nibiru
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

I would start by asking the lodger what it is that they would like to watch.

 

Do they actually want live TV ? and if so what channels do they watch.

If they just want BBC programmes, then any smart TV adaptor could provide that with BBC iPlayer.

If they are used to having Sky, then you may need to explore a different solution.

Would they want Netflix or other streaming services ?

 

It would be worth knowing from the start the lodger's "wish list" before trying to find an all encompassing technical solution.

 

20Mbps should be more than enough for normal HD, and shouldn't affect non-gaming internet usage.

 

I would avoid WiFi, and would use powerline adaptors to extend the ethernet to a wired TV adaptor.

 

Have a look at Roku TV adaptors, to get an idea of what is available, and whether that meets your needs.

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Baldrick1
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

As @Nibiru says, 20 Mbps should be enough especially if you can get this wirelessly where you would position the TV. If it was me and I had to buy the TV I would buy a cheap smart TV or alternatively a basic one plus an Amazon Fire Stick. With this option (it might also apply to smart tvs) if your lodger wants to use a paid for service then it's a simple add on that the lodger can buy themself. Both options will give access to many live TV channels.

If you need to connect via Ethernet cable, do you not have spare Ethernet ports on your 'slave' routers?

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dvorak
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites


Moderators Note


This topic has been moved from ADSL Broadband to Tech Help

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shermans
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

Oh dear; it shows just how out of date I am !.  I had never even heard of a "Smart TV" before, so I just googled it.  I got lost as soon as they mentioned "Apps" !

Now, the lodger is also "of a certain age" and just wants bog standard BBC and ITV. No interest in Netflix and things like that at all.  I assume that a Smart TV will enable that.

I assume also that the TV licence then has to be paid for in order to watch BBC and ITV. But are there then additional subscription charges just to watch BBC and ITV or is that freely available ?

One of the slave routers is actually in the room and therefore the TV can easily be connected to it with an ethernet cable instead of relying on WiFi.

It also appears that Smart TVs are inexpensive  - cheaper than a laptop !  Unless I am mistaken.

So what is the point of having a roof-top aerial these days ?  Or for that matter satellite TV ?  If I have understood this right, a Smart TV makes that all redundant.

I had also assumed that I would have to sign up to a special Plusnet TV service instead of my existing broadband fibre service, but evidently I even got that wrong ! 

One more question - when are they going to invent COLOUR TV instead of Black and White ?   Cheesy

daveplus
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

@shermans

There are many more channels available on Freeview via aerial or satellite than there are via the internet. Plenty of good and plenty of bad ones.

Smart TVs include BBC iPlayer and similar apps for other services. I have an old Panasonic and it only has BBC iPlayer of the main terrestrial channels but I believe most smart TVs have a larger range. You would not need anything else from Plusnet. A non-smart TV + one of the adaptors others have mentioned would give you the same

 

 

Baldrick1
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

@shermans

If all your lodger wants is BBC and ITV then a bog standard Smart TV will do all you need plus a lot more. Depending on the model it will need either an Ethernet cable to a slave router or might be wireless (or both). You need no additional hardware or contract.

You will need a normal TV licence and register the TV over the Internet but there are no additional charges for the common free to air programmes. . The way the licence checking works is that the TV displays a PIN code, you then register with the TV company on line using a computer and enter the PiN displayed on the TV. This allows the authorities the option to check your registered account details with the licence data base. You only have to register once with the TV company to get on line, after that you can just use the TV on line either watching programmes live or from previous transmissions without any hassle.

With a terrestial aerial there arevover a hundred freeview channels to choose from, many more than are transmitted over the Internet. 

 

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shutter
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

 @shermans wrote:

 

Now, the lodger is also "of a certain age" and just wants bog standard BBC and ITV.

 

 

 If that is "the whole package" required by the lodger.... he can watch "live" tv 

  BBC1,    BBC2,  ITV1,  CH4 & CH5 ,....    on line

on a laptop/computer/ipad/or whatever  because you also state....

One of the slave routers is actually in the room

https://www.tvguide.co.uk/?systemid=3&cTime=2/12/2014%207:00:00%20PM&thisTime=&thisDay=&catColor=

 

EDIT...  

 

TRY ALSO THIS SITE...

 

https://tvplayer.com/watch

For a much better channel selection..... probably have to "register" or something... not used it .. just found it on a google search..

 

 

I assume also that the TV licence then has to be paid for in order to watch BBC and ITV.

 

 Yes, you still need a tv licence to watch live tv on line....

 


shermans
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

Thanks.  That answered everything and makes it really simple.

With regard to terrestrial aerials, because I am retired, I do not have time to watch even one TV channel - I could never cope with 100s !  I had so much more time when I was still working !

I do listen to the radio a lot while doing other things, and my concern is that no investment is going into the old transmitters because the focus is on DAB unfortunately, which either drops out every half hour or the sound quality is so poor due to interference that I end up turning it off.  I dread to think what will happen when car radios are all DAB.  I rely instead on internet radio which is reliable and good quality, but it amuses me how long the time lag is - I can be upstairs listening on FM and go downstairs and hear on the internet radio what has just been said often a good five minutes after I heard it before !  The time signals are pointless.

shutter
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

@shermans

 

I did an edit on my previous post..... and here is more information about the tvplayer site.

 

You need to "register"  and have a choice of "packages"... the "free" package or "basic" gives 65 freeview channels,..

tv player reg.png

 

. all you need is  your name, an email address and a password,

https://tvplayer.com/registration/plans

 

Mav
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

You need a licence to watch BBC or iPlayer at any time but, having read https://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/check-if-you-need-one/topics/Live-TV-and-how-you-watch-it, it seems that it doesn't apply if you watch things on the likes of ITVHub as long as they are non-live broadcasts.

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Baldrick1
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

Reading this shows what a total shambles this is. If you take a laptop to a premises that hasn't got a licence then you can watch live tv providing the laptop isn't charging at the same time! However if you are on a boat (does this include a houseboat?) you can watch and charge without breaking the law.

Perhaps it's time that the BBC was put on a subscription base or included adverts. It would be interesting to see how it coped in the real competitive world.

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198kHz
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

@shermans wrote: Having an old cottage, I am reluctant to have to spoil the facade with a satellite dish of any sort. 

If you have a clear view about 23° east of south, a dish can be on the ground. Depending on location, the elevation angle is about 24 ±3°

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shermans
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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

If you have a clear view about 23° east of south, a dish can be on the ground. Depending on location, the elevation angle is about 24 ±3°

Funnily enough, that is the one place where I might just have where it would be unobtrusive, just by the dustbins !  I assume that 23° East of South means 157° ?

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Re: Broadband TV for Luddites

@shermans  Your assumption is correct.  Smiley

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