Advertising Feature: Focus on Peter Tyson Electronics
Last updated at 16:38, Friday, 27 February 2009
There’s an air of calmness at Peter Tyson’s in Carlisle. Which is rather surprising when you consider the imminent onset of digital switchover. With just weeks to go, staff at the store can expect a busy time ahead as they guide analogue Cumbria into the digital age.
Fortunately, the staff are well prepared having been trained by Digital UK to cope with all manner of inquiries about the switchover.
Tony Masterton,of Peter Tyson’s, said: “It’s on people’s minds and people are asking what the date of switchover is and what technology they need.”
Cumbrians have a number of options available to them. At the most basic level, they can - if their TV is not too old - simply rig up a digibox between their aerial and their TV to enable them to watch digital stations.
Doing nothing is not an option. After switchover in June, analogue TVs will go blank.
Tony said: “Some people are putting a digibox on their secondary TVs in the bedrooms or spare rooms and opting to change to a new TV in the main lounge or living room.”
Buying a new TV brings with it many advantages. First, it will be flatscreen - the big, heavy and bulky cathode ray tubes are long gone. Secondly, it will be digital - the digibox is ‘integrated’ into the set meaning no extra cables or need for additional plug sockets.
With flatscreens comes a choice of two technologies: LCD or plasma. Both are popular although some manufacturers recommend plasma screen if you are considering buying a screen bigger than 37in.
Peter Tyson staff will be happy to talk through with you the various options open to you. The new-boy on the block is Freesat, a satellite TV service offered by BBC and ITV. With over 140 TV and radio channels, no monthly subscriptions and High-Definition TV as part of the package, it’s not surprising that’s it is proving a popular choice.
As with Sky, it’s more-established satellite service, the satellite technology means it can carry as much high definition TV as it wishes. Sky currently has 29 HD channels. Plans for HD channels on Freeview are yet to be realised but even when they are the number of HD channels will be limited simply because of the limited bandwidth on Freeview.
BT Vision and other bespoke TV services are other options you may wish to consider. There is no cable in Cumbria apart from a small number of Carlisle homes on Small World (formerly WightCable).
Once you have sorted out your preferred option for watching digital TV, it’s time to look at how you are going to record programmes.
Continuing to record on an analogue video recorder is likely to prove problematic - not least because you will only be able to watch the channel you are recording.
Upgrading to a digital recorder (PVR) will make life much simpler.
A favourite feature of PVRs is the easy-to-view programme guide. And just select the programme you want to record, press select and it’s sorted. No more nonsense having to programme in the start and finish time of a programme. And with PVRs you can press the ‘series-link’ button to record the whole TV series. How did we cope without PVRs?!
Surprisingly, old video tape technology is hanging on with Peter Tyson’s seeing a good number of sales of DVD/video recorders. Tony said: “Many people have family videos of the children growing up, family holidays and the like that they want to continue to watch. And children often bring their favourite videos to gran and grandad’s house to watch.”
The ability to transfer old videos to DVDs is another reason why video/DVD recorders are so popular.
But growing in popularity is hard disc recording capability with PVRs – it may mean you can’t quickly share the programme with friends but it does mean a quick and easy technology to use. HD recording is also possible on hard discs.
Blu-ray is another buzz phrase doing the rounds. This is essentially HD DVDs. You will need a special blu-ray player to watch them but the astonishing picture and sound quality is ensuring their increased popularity and a rapidly-falling price tag.
There’s no doubt that some people are using digital switchover as a good excuse to indulge in splashing out money on an enriched TV-watching experience - digital means more channels, more choice and potentially higher quality service. But Tony points out that it is possible to spend just £35 to £40 converting your existing set with a digibox. Some people will also need to look at upgrading their TV aerials - Peter Tyson staff will be happy to advise.
But it’s worth bearing in mind how much time you and your family spend watching TV. A relatively small financial investment can mean years of gob-smacking, glorious High Definition TV viewing. Your only problem then will be which of the many digital TV channels you watch first.
First published at 13:35, Friday, 27 February 2009
Published by http://www.whitehavennews.co.uk