Topfield TF5810PVRt review

With a whopping 500GB hard drive and twin digital TV tuners, Topfield has produced an excellent Freeview+ PVR that's easy to use Tested at £300.00

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Our Verdict

Superb picture quality, recording and usability, plus a whopping hard disk drive and wealth of features – excellent

For

  • Huge hard disk drive
  • slick, intuitive menus
  • twin digital tuners
  • HDMI upscaling
  • excellent picture quality

Against

  • Won't record clips less than three minutes long

The affordability of hard disk drives over recent months has affected a number of areas in the wider world of AV. We've seen bigger and bigger MP3 players, for a fraction of the cost, plus huge hard disk drives in NAS devices and HDD recorders.

Now it's the turn of Freeview PVRs, with Topfield stepping-up to deliver an almighty 500GB of storage with its brand new TF5810PVR.

This is a Freeview+ recorder, which means that the unit has, in the eyes of the powers that be at Freeview, achieved a certain quality standard. Well, we'll be the judges of that. It also means the device has features such as series recording, pause live TV and an 8-day EPG.

The inclusion of two digital TV tuners means you can record two channels at once, and watch a third pre-recorded one off the hard disk while you do so. In other words, these new units aren't left behind by – whisper it – Sky+.

Round the back of the unit you have the standard Scart connections plus the all-important addition of an HDMI out, which allow you to upscale to 720p/1080i, while there are two CI slots for TV cards.

Excellent menus and navigation
Up and running the menus are excellent and navigation of the system is intuitive, meaning we're soon merrily recording anything that takes our fancy on that huge hard disk drive, or are we?

A quick check of the HDD turns up a blank and it turns out that any clip less than "about 3 minutes", to quote the manual, isn't saved. We think this is rather strange – but if you know this, and remember you have the pause and rewind live TV function, it's not the end of the world.

Aside from this, we're very impressed. The tuner quality is excellent, giving a very clean, natural and balanced picture, with excellent detail and smooth motion, noticeably better than rival PVRs that we've seen.

The upscaler is fine and will prove handy with older TVs, but if you've bought a good quality set in the last 12 months then that will do the job just as well. Recordings are faithful and of course there's bags of room. Whichever way you look at it, this PVR heads straight to the top of the field.

Specifications

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Technical Information

Frequency Range174 MHz to 230 MHz, 470 MHz to 862 MHz
Number of Tuners2
FeaturesElectronic Program Guide, Parental Lock, PVR (Personal Video Recorder), Teletext, Time Shift
Maximum Recording Time44 Hour
TV Tuner SupportedPay TV
Channel Coverage2000

Interfaces-Ports

HDMIYes
S-VideoYes
Number of SCART Interfaces2
SCARTYes
USBYes
Network RJ-45No
Composite VideoYes

Video

Digital TunerDVB
Aspect Ratio Supported16:9
Video Signal StandardHDTV
Scan Format1080i
Video FormatsMPEG-2, MPEG-3, MPEG-1
Analog TunerPAL, NTSC

General Information

Product NameTopfield TF5810PVRt
Product ModelTF5810 PVRt
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.topfield.co.kr
Brand NameTopfield
Product TypeSatellite Receiver
ManufacturerTopfield Co., Ltd
Manufacturer Part NumberTF5810PVRT

Display and Graphics

Maximum Resolution Supported720 x 576

Power Description

Operating Power Consumption28 W
Input Voltage120 V AC, 230 V AC
Standby Power Consumption18 W

Physical Characteristics

Weight Approximate3.40 kg
Width38 cm
Depth26.5 cm
Height6 cm
Dimensions6 cm (H): 38 cm (W): 26.5 cm (D)

Audio

Sound SystemDolby Digital

Miscellaneous

Environmentally FriendlyYes
Certifications and StandardsISO/IEC 13818-1
Package Contents
  • Digital Terrestrial Receiver
  • Remote Control Unit
  • 2 x Batteries for Remote Control (AAA)
  • 1 x Aerial Cable
  • 1 x Loop Cable
  • 1 x SCART Cable
  • User Guide
Environmental CertificationWEEE

I-O Expansions

Expansion Slots2 x CI, 2 x PCMCIA

Memory

Flash Memory Capacity2 MB

Storage

Hard Drive Capacity320 GB