Topfield is dead, long live Humax

So, after more than sixyears enjoyment of my Topfield 5800 PVR I finally bit the bullet and replaced it with a sleek black Humax, that despite having extolled (at the time) the many strengths of the Topfield over the then available Humax machines. So why have I moved my loyalties…

What’s happened in six years?

Well, it’s the world of gadgets! The whole place is constant turmoil and gets reinvented every 18 months! More seriously:

  • The  toppy was 160 Gb
  • The toppy does Freeview
  • Digital Switchover final hit the South and we now get HD on Freeview!
Most important is that Topfield have apparently abandoned the UK Freeview market!

How does the Humax stack up?

Some of this will be Freeview+ benefits so apologies for the blurring:

  • 1Tb drive, just as well as HD is >> SD in terms of file size, still an improvement
  • UI is pretty slick though some ability to tweak would be nice
  • Network built in so can access (to an extent) remotely. In particular streaming from my NAS works a charm and is much better than I was expecting
  • Will transfer to an attached USB drive (not done yet)
  • Series record (F+ feature)
  • Offers HD if you switch to SD for a programme shown on both
  • When BBC trail a programme the option to hit ‘green’ to get it recorded is great
  • Picture is very good, and we feel the HD is better than that from Virgin HD cable.

Overall very pleased!


About Tony Jones
Big Finish writer, reviewer and blogger, I'm interested in science fiction and Doctor Who. I review for CultBox, The Doctor Who Companion and others. I am also Lead Writer for Starburst Magazine, and write the occasional piece for Vortex, the BSFA critical magazine.

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