The 10 Best Freeview Recorder Reviews In The UK (2021)

Best Freeview Recorder Reviews

Last Updated on August 28, 2021

A Freeview recorder is perfect if life commitments take you away from your favourite shows – or you want to collect a series to watch whenever you feel like it. Let’s see which of 2021’s top recorders is the best fit for your home!

Our Top 3 Freeview Recorder Picks
1. The Best Freeview Recorder By Humax
2. The Best 500 GB Freeview Recorder By Manhattan
3. The Best 500 GB Freeview Recorder With Remote By Manhattan

The Best Freeview Recorders Of 2021

1. The Best Freeview Recorder By Humax

500 Gb Television Freeview Recorder By Humax

This recorder grabbed the top spot. It is stylish, durable and records enough shows to keep you entertained. But let’s look at the specific features that you can look forward to!

You can preview the programme listing as far as a week in advance. See two things you want to capture but they are on different channels at the same time? No problem; this unit can record two programmes simultaneously.

Furthermore, you can also pause and rewind live TV while recording. It also comes preloaded with relevant apps like Netflix and Amazon Prime and you can even listen to music. So if you subscribe to those platforms, just plug and play!


  • Easy to use with all TVs.
  • 500GB memory.
  • The full HD picture quality is impressive.


  • The remote control makes a clicking sound when you press the buttons. Many users find this annoying.

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2. The Best 500 GB Freeview Recorder By Manhattan

best 500 gb freeview recorder

You can certainly amass a huge collection of recorded episodes with this box. We picked it as the best 500 GB recorder because it allows you to gather 300 hours of your favourite shows. But it offers a lot more than a simple recording function.

You also get 70 TV channels, 15 HD channels and over 25 radio stations. Installation is as simple as connecting it to your rooftop aerial and once the recorder is up and running, you can peruse an 8-day TV guide to pick your entertainment. You can also pause and rewind live TV or record two shows at once.


  • 300 hours of recording.
  • Plenty of TV and radio channels.
  • Easy to install and use.
  • Records two channels simultateously.


  • Needs a rooftop aerial. Will not work with cable TV or satellite signal.

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3. The Best 500 GB Freeview Recorder With Remote By Manhattan

Freeview Play 4K Smart Recorder By Manhattan

This Freeview recorder is considered one of the best box/remote kits on the market today. You can look forward to an intuitive remote with all the functions you need to comfortably view, record, and adjust your viewing from a distance. But what about the recorder?

The recorder has great features such as a strong WiFi, a quad-core CPU for fast performance and support for Ultra HD and HDR, as long as your TV can handle it. The hard drive also offers you 500 GB which allows you to record 300 hours of episodes. Whatever you record, the box sorts your shows, episodes and other recordings into convenient categories.


  • The interface is clean, intuitive and responsive.
  • You can easily navigate the programme schedule.
  • The hard drive is 500GB with 300 recording hours.
  • Quality remote control.
  • Will also record in SD as a contingency.


  • You won’t know if a programme is recording because there is no LED screen available. To confirm your recording you will have to go into the programme “info”.
  • Not compatible with Netflix.

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4. The Top 500 GB Twin HD Freeview Box By BT (Youview)

500GB Twin HD Freeview Box By Bt (Youview)

Are you looking for a compact, quiet and functional Freeview box? Then this could be the best choice for you. The unit runs silently, can be placed in areas that have limited space and also offers plenty of recording hours.

This recorder captures 600 hours of Standard Definition and 250 hours of HD. If you want to record in Ultra-HD then you can expect about 60 hours.

You can also download the app for Android and IOS and see the line-up of shows that will be airing soon. The box comes with a user-friendly menu system, an on-demand library, and the BT SPORTS Ultra HD channel if you are a BT subscriber.


  • Easy to set up and use.
  • The EPG is quick to navigate.
  • Launches Netflix swiftly.T
  • The interface is sharp, responsive and very intuitive.
  • It can handle 4K recording for SKY, BT or Netflix.
  • LED light shows when the unit is recording.


  • The device does not come with Amazon Prime streaming services.
  • Only 26 Freeview stations are free to record on this device.

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5. The Top Freeview Recorder With USB Slot By Oakcastle

best freeview recorder with usb slot

Do you love the idea of 500 GB of storage idea but prefer limitless recording even more? Then a Freeview recorder with a USB slot might be the best way to go. Indeed, you can plug in countless USB devices in this box and never run out of space to record your own library of movies, shows, and episodes.

The subscription-free unit is easy to install and gives you 150 channels in full HD. You also get a 7-day TV guide, the ability to pause and rewind live footage, and schedule recordings to capture a sports game or episode when you are not at home. The box can also be connected to a WiFi dongle to connect it to the Internet so you can use apps like Youtube, listen to Internet radio stations, and more.


  • Offers limitless recording.
  • Easy to install.
  • Can record when you are not at home.
  • Can be conected to the Internet.


  • USB sticks and WiFi dongle not included.

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6. The Top Youview And Set Top Box By BT

Youview+ Set Top Box By Bt

This recorder allows you to watch TV in brilliant HD. Curious about what you missed in the last week? Just scroll back as far as 7 days and watch anything on the programming list.

You can also scroll forward to pick something in advance that you want to record. All told, the recorder can hold 300 hours of footage and sorts items by date or title for your convenience. Should you forget to manually program the recorder to capture something in your absence, you can use the YouView smartphone app to programme your box remotely with your iPhone.


  • Easy to install.
  • EPG is excellent and allows easy navigation between the TV channels and recorded programmes.
  • The picture quality is amazing.
  • Apps and streaming services include Netflix, NowTV, iPlayer, All5, ITVHub, 5, and more.


  • It won’t record a show you scheduled if the broadcaster shuffles the programming.

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7. The Top Freeview HD Recorder By Manhattan

500 GB Freeview HD Recorder By Manhattan

This box is compact, near-silent and fits into any room. Unlike several other alternatives, this one comes with a large, well designed remote control. You will find the most-used buttons placed conveniently near the top of the remote as well.

This unit has enough space for you to record the entire series for playback whenever you choose. Besides offering you 500 GB of space, you can also expect all the top features like pause and rewind, a great TV guide, recording two programs together, and more.


  • Easy to install.
  • Durable.
  • User-friendly recording and access to recorded programmes.
  • A remote control with batteries.
  • 1.2m HDMI cable.


  • No WiFi connection is available. You will need an Ethernet cable to connect to a router.

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8. The Smart 500 GB HDD Recorder By Panasonic

Smart 500 GB HDD Recorder By Panasonic

Perhaps you never imagined there could ever be a set-top box that would do some of the things your smartphone does? Well, this stylish well-branded recorder offers you several perks.

You get to record up to 341 hours in HD mode and 129 hours in normal mode. It works seamlessly with an HD 3D Camcorder and is compatible with all Android devices. On the function menu, there’s quite an array of streaming services like Catch-Up TV, iPlayer, All 4, Netflix, Youtube and more.

There is also an Internet button to do some surfing, twin tuners that can record two programs at once, and from the get-go, this box is easy to install and operate.


  • Twin Freeview HD tuners which allow you to watch a programme and record another simultaneously.
  • You can also record two different programmes at the same time.
  • An Internet buttonwhich allows you to surf the web.
  • Straightforward to install.
  • Excellent viewing quality.There is also a Netflix streaming services button which you may find quite useful.


  • The remote is a little cluttered.
  • The EPG is slow.

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9. The Top Multi-Functional Freeview Recorder By UK Digital

best multipurpose freeview recorder

This recorder has a surprising amount of features. If you love going all out with your entertainment – especially recording – then sit closer. Here are the top perks that you can look forward to.

Installation is easy and once that is done, you have access to 200 channels, several HD channels and a lot of radio stations. You can book future recordings and enjoy them in full HD. This is another box that offers limitless recording time since you use a USB port for storing your favourite shows.

You can also connect it to the Internet to enjoy Youtube and use the device as a media player for both music and photos.


  • Remote control.
  • Easy to instal and use.
  • USB port to record limitless hours.
  • WiFi dongle can be used.
  • Doubles as a media player.


  • USB stick and dongle not included.

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10. The Smart 1 TB HDD Recorder By Panasonic

Smart 1 TB HDD Recorder By Panasonic

Add some style with this box’s sleek and beautiful design. With in-built Freeview Play, the user is able to access catch-up services for all stations and seamless network connectivity.

The Long Record feature on this device doubles your recording capacity. You can record up to 684 hours in HD and 259 hours in normal mode.

Catch Up TV, BBC iPlayer, ITV Player and All 4 are available, and the series link function ensures you never miss a thing. In addition, the programme guide shows you content from 8 days ahead and seven days behind.


  • Sharp picture quality
  • Works with streaming services like Netflix
  • You can record for long durations.
  • Reliable recording function.
  • The WiFi broadband connection is hitch-free.
  • Integration with TV is seamless.


  • The programme guide tends to be sluggish.
  • The remote control is often slow to respond.

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Your Freeview Recorder Buying Guide

Take your entertainment to the next level while also going subscription-free. That’s right, we’re talking about Freeview recorders! Our guide offers the essential pointers you need to keep in mind to find the best recorder for you.

Features To Consider Before Buying A Freeview Recorder

The Number Of Tuners

With two tuners you can record two programmes at once. You can do this while watching a third programme from the hard drive or, with some recorders, live.

Accurate Series Recording And Storage

Ensure it can record full series and has good storage. The bigger the hard drive capacity in Gigabytes (GB), the better. Any unit containing a 500 GB hard disk or more is your ideal choice.


One would have thought that electronic programme guides (EPGs) would be largely generic but this is not the case. For example, the EPGs from Humax and Panasonic are quite different. Generally, a good EPG will not only spot recording clashes, but it will offer alternative programme times if there are any.


Popular apps and services that can be found on set-top boxes include Netflix, Now TV, Amazon Prime, Skype and news and weather services, amongst others. But just because they’re there doesn’t mean they’ll work for you. Many of them, like Netflix, Amazon Prime Videos and Now TV, require subscriptions.

Another thing to note is that all these features, Catch-up, YouTube, and the like, would only work when TVs are connected to an internet router.

Other Connections

If the rest of the set-top box of your choice is perfect, it might just be lacking a few ports that are compatible with the rest of your equipment. Just remember that adaptors that enable HDMI cables to connect to a different type of port, including Scart sockets, are available for less than a £12 price.


Q: Can you record on Freeview TV?

A: Yes, you can. And the easiest way to do it is to get a Freeview HD Recorder or Freeview Play Recorder.

Q: Can you record Freeview on a smart TV?

A: There are TV models that allow you to directly record programmes onto a USB hard drive without the need for a digital video recorder or VCR. All that is needed is for you to plug your USB stick or external hard drive into the provided USB port. If you have a TV like this, then, yes, you can record TV programmes on your smart TV.

Q: How do I record on Freeview?

A: Select the show you want to record, then either choose to record a single episode or the whole series. With most recorders, you can do this even while watching, pausing or rewinding live TV programmes.

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About the Author Harry Thompson

Involved in home renovations throughout his life, Harry is an expert in everything to do with home and garden DIY. In his spare time, he enjoys cooking and tending to his garden.