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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!


I have this TV - Hisense 50 Inch H50B7300UK Smart 4K HDR LED TV

I have absolutely no idea how to set up a Freeview on it - menu comes up but when I select any channels nothing happens, just a grey screen.

Few idiot questions (apologies, laugh all you like but please help if you can)

I live in a conversion, 3 flats, no communal aearial or communal dish and landlord (L&Q) refuses to install one.

So to be able to view ANYTHING, so far I had own satelite dish and Sky subscription despite never really watching Sky.

The plan was get a smart TV and ditch Sky all together and just watch free view and Netflix etc.

Set up Netflix, working fine but for the life of me can not set up Freeview - I looked on the Freeview pages but can not follow at all, menu is different and no idea what to press.

So a stupid question now - do I need to have the Sky box on to watch Freeview? TV ha a build in freeview so I thought I will not need the Sky box with it (idea was to ditch Sky and their crazy prices).

Can I tune Freeview without the Sky box?

Completely confused - can anyone help with some advice?


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You will need an aerial. Depending on where you are and on surrounding buildings, you may manage with a set-top or internal aerial. Sainsbury's sell them. If you can see the top of the Alexandra Palace tower you should have no problem. 

Then you will have to get the TV to scan to find and memorise the channels. There should be an option on the menu button to "install " channels automatically.

You should not need to use the SKY box.

SKY box is irrelevant. As said above, get a set top aerial.

OK, something like that is what you should try. I'm away until Friday but  will come round if you are still having problems.

I don't use sky, but it's my understanding that you don't need a subscription to view the free to air channels.

The satellite used by Sky also has Freesat on it, which is basically the satellite version of Freeview, with very similar channels - https://www.freesat.co.uk/switching-is-easy/sky/

Some TVs come with Freesat built in, otherwise you can get a box (e.g. Humax), including ones with hard drives for recording shows & access to streaming/catch up apps like BBC iPlayer etc.

If your indoor Freeview aerial doesn't work well enough then Freesat could be a good option.

Late to this, but can I  add an extra comment. OF course, first try the aerial as you are doing now. Your TV has a Freeview compatible viewer (see https://www.freeview.co.uk for details), as well as native catch up apps like iPlayer.

The only issue will be whether the aerial you get is sufficient to receive the full range of HD channels. This will be a matter of testing to find out - plug it in and experiment. Read the manual of your TV so that when you have the aerial plugged in, you can scan for all the digital channels it can receive. With luck you will get a lot.

If you do have  problems, you will have to think whether what you have is sufficient. Since you own a satellite dish you should be able to use this:


You would need to buy a box, but this would take the satellite signal and convert it for your TV. This will only be needed if your reception is bad. Freesat has no subscription: in fact your old Sky box will act as a Freesat viewer if they have not taken it back. When your sky subscription is closed you lose only the sky and subscription channels.

Secondly, you should hook your TV up to the broadband router, preferably by an ethernet cable rather than wireless if you can. You have several viewer apps in the TV - player, netflix, ITV, 4od etc - which can be used to receive HD over the internet, rather than by aerial. This might help if you have reception problems.

Probably this confuses you more, but may be useful.

I sorry missed the bit about the Sky box. In that case you would have to buy a Freesat box - the site has details - to use Freesat. But this is only a consideration if your aerial doesn’t perform well. Let’s hope it’s ok. The Freesat box needs no subscription btw.

TVs work fine on wireless but do tend to take the whole bandwidth- that’s why I suggested using a cable if you can. But it’s not important- only an issue if you have other Wi-fi users simultaneously.

You should be able to see all freeview channels as long as the reception is good enough - which includes  a large number of channels including BBC1,2,4, News etc & loads of others including various ITV & channel 4 ones. e.g. see https://www.radioandtelly.co.uk/freeviewchannels.html

The TV license pays for the BBC channels (including radio & streaming if you use it.

Hi Anka, you might not get all the Freeview channels with an indoor aerial. Have you got the catch up apps on your television? If so, you can watch live BBC, ITV and channel 4 through your broadband as well as previously aired programmes.

If the aerial doesn't work I suggest you purchase a Freesat box as you already have the dish. Currys and Argos sell these boxes.

I hope you get it sorted.

Anka, please don't apologise for asking for help, you're not the only one baffled by all this new-fangled stuff - O for the old days when you bought the thing, plugged it in and switched it on!

After the big switchover a few years ago I was surprised to find I could still get most channels with a set-top box and indoor aerial. I was told to point it at Crystal Palace transmitter - not easy when I'm on the ground floor and the house next door is in the way. From time to time BBC channels go all spluttery (weather??), but that's the only time I can get London Live (channel 8), I just put up with it. 

Thanks to everyone who has provided links and advice!

Good morning Anka, please keep us posted on how you solve your dilemma. 

Just be careful - 

The law says you need to be covered by a TV Licence to:

  • watch or record programmes as they’re being shown on TV, on any channel
  • watch or stream programmes live on an online TV service (such as ITV Hub, All 4, YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, Now TV, Sky Go, etc.)
  • download or watch any BBC programmes on iPlayer.

This applies to any device you use, including a TV, desktop computer, laptop, mobile phone, tablet, games console, digital box or DVD/VHS recorder.

So even if you only watch live programmes via the internet  you need a licence.



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