HD hoarder Mark Craven welcomes the increased capacity of Sky's 2TB PVR
Sky's revamped HD receiver/PVR is without doubt an essential purchase for those on the satcaster's more comprehensive packages – anyone, for instance, subscribing to its full bouquet of movie channels will surely appreciate its enlarged hard drive.
Named the 2TB PVR (and replacing the old 1.5TB box), it actually only offers 1.5TB of user-recordable space. The left over 500GB (as was the case with the previous unit), is used for on-demand. This naming system could mislead buyers, as can the Sky box's pricing system – it's available to existing non-HD Sky customers taking an HD subscription for £49 (plus installation and subs charges), or £149 for new customers taking an HD sub. If you're already a Sky HD user and want one to replace your old box, it should cost £249 – although I was quoted £499 by Sky's website to add it as a second, multiroom box.
In terms of design, the Sky 2TB box is identical to its forebear, with a curved front fascia and iconic remote control. It retains the whisper-quiet operation and well-judged EPG (now with a raft of embellishments, including catchup TV, the ability to undelete recordings and a content-rich on-demand hub).
Niggles do remain, though. Again, the box is unable to carry 5.1 audio over its HDMI output, and again it only provides dual tuners. The latter is where Sky, I feel, should have evolved. The flexibility afforded by the class-leading HDD is superb (I've been grabbing HD movies with abandon), but this more gung-ho attitude to recording is resulting in frequent warning messages, telling me I can't watch the channel I'm on because both the tuners are now required elsewhere. The three-tuner offering from Virgin Media is more liberating in that regard.
Still, there's no escaping the brilliance of Sky's newest PVR. Upgrade if you can.
Price: From £49 (plus subscription/installation)
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