Bye Bye #Humax

A long long time ago we moved from tape to disk for Video Recording and (almost randomly) settled on a Humax box after some difficulties with Sony.
Just over 2 years we belatedly made the move to HD TV (the old CRT TV was perfectly OK until then) and, entirely satisfied with our Humax experience moved onto a FOX-T2 unit.
Regrettably, it was clear that Humax had downgraded the software.  Missing was the feature to start watching a program so many minutes into the broadcast.  When you move between devices in different rooms (be it 2 PVR\’s or iPlayer etc) it can be a damn nuisance to have to fast forward to the point where you want to catch up.
Then just under a couple of years into that unit\’s life the hard disk failed.  Humax replaced under warranty, and that\’s when we found out that the the HD recordings we\’d faithfully backed up and copied onto the new box would not play.  This was determined to be a hardware fault* on the new box, but there were no replacements available.  At which the ever reliable John Lewis support kicked in.
We got the replacement the 2000T and then found some more calamitous problems: the tuners are of a lower quality and HD broadcasts broke up. A replacement had the same problem.
However, there are other issues with the latest Humax range.
* no front panel for data feedback (not a great loss, but…)
* No slow motion play back – really annoying when trying to see if that try was scored!
* an *incredibly* slow USB port, backing up/restoring takes days, not hours
* a cheaper, tackier feel to the product.

John Lewis played ball, and now we have a shiny new Panasonic unit…

That has it\’s own issues: only 32 recording slots, it does not permit watching a third channel whilst recording 2  (albeit only on the same transponder as one of the two), a weaker clash of recordings resolution, no folder structure for storing recordings.  But at least we can record and watch HD TV again.
A couple of benefits though – we can watch programs at 125% normal speed and still hear the soundtrack (great for those documentaries that squeeze 10 minute of information into a whole hour), more channels on screen at the same time in the program guide.  And slow mo is back

Muscle memory from many years of Humax is hard to lose, but the products reached the point of being unfit for purpose, and it seemed to me Humax no longer care about quality, performance and user experience.

*actually, it\’s not – it is by design.  However, if we\’d have known that we would have used Foxy to decrypt then when backing up and then been able to watch them on the new one.  But tech support didn\’t know that… so we took their word it was busted.

By P J Bryant

Ramblings of a freelance IT Consultant working for some nice SME's, large organisations, resellers and the usual friends and family! Bit of

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