It was a feature much discussed on the launch of the Humax HD-Fox T2 - then, the first Freeview HD set-top-box onto the market - but it's taken a good five months to come to fruition: the company is finally ready to add recording functionality, as revealed on Pocket-lint on 8 September.
As of early to mid October, if you plug an external hard drive into its USB 2.0 port, you'll be able to record, pause and rewind live TV.
However, the box itself only has one tuner inside, so won't be as fully-featured as the company's own Freeview HD+ PVR. You can record one channel while watching a show stored on the same HDD, but there's a cunning trick to recording more than one at a time...
If you know about these things, you can record two shows at the same time (or watch a different channel while recording). Basically, the stations in question need to be on the same multiplex (such as BBC HD and ITV1 HD, for example), and then, Bob's your uncle.
And to help out, a list of the different multiplexes (groups of channels) can be found at www.dtg.org.uk. Just make sure that your recordings are on channels listed in the same box.
Humax will be offering the update as an automatic over-the-air download, and also a manual option on the company's website. All its boxes shipped to the UK from October will include the new software as standard.
The new features are as follows:
- Record a programme while watching another if they are broadcast on the same multiplex
- Record any programme while watching one stored on the USB device
- Live pause and rewind
- Series recording - to automatically record all the episodes of favourite shows
- Schedule tracking – so recordings start and finish on time
- Split recordings - for two-part programmes that have a break in the middle, such as films
Catch-up video-on-demand services, via Ethernet, are also coming to the HD-Fox T2 later this year, including Sky Player and BBC iPlayer.
Does this signal the end of the conventional set-top-box? Let us know in the comments below...