10 Best Cable Receivers: Reviews and Buying Guide

Brilliant, clear-cut TV images that make you feel like you’re live and up-close – that’s what TV viewers want today. A cable receiver can, therefore, be found in many German households. If you want to continue to use your old TV, you need an external receiver to provide excellent picture quality. But which receiver is the right one? And what are the decisive criteria for the purchase of such a device for the decoding of digital TV reception signals?

The large cable receiver informs you in detail so that you can make the best possible purchase decision in December 2018 to suit your individual needs. Many a cable receiver is even a real all-rounder and has to offer you beyond the standard functions also has a convenient recording function. Television without interruptions? With the right receiver is also very easy! Find out later which receiver can promise you boundless good entertainment for your home. Of course, we also took a closer look at the test results of the Stiftung Warentest to provide you with comprehensive sales advice.

Top 10 Cable Receivers

What is a cable receiver?

Cable receivers are known by many names. Time is only a receiver of the speech. Then again from a cable receiver, a cable receiver, an HD cable receiver or a DVB-C receiver. However, receiver cables are not to be confused with an SAT receiver, as these two types of receivers are designed for fundamentally different purposes. These receivers are electronic receivers that are responsible for receiving the audio and video signals, provided that you use a cable connection for your TV at home.

In addition to decoding the incoming signals, a cable receiver is also responsible for improving these signals with an amplifier. Therefore, you can ensure that you can benefit from a brilliant, razor-sharp image and sound quality. Just like an SAT receiver with a hard disk, you can now also opt for a cable receiver with a hard disk. This is always an advantage if you want to record programs in order to watch them later. After all, when it comes to recorded television content you even have the opportunity to fast-forward and simply skip the annoying commercials. Thus, you come in an even higher TV enjoyment.

An integrated hard disk is nevertheless not a must. Because many inexpensive cable receivers have a USB port to offer, so you can easily connect an external hard drive. If your HD receiver cable can also be used as a media player and supports a variety of file formats, you can easily play these files from your external hard drive.

Why use a cable receiver? The pros and cons

Depending on where you live, you can access the TV reception via cable, SAT or aerial. Accordingly, you must opt for the right cable, satellite or antenna receiver. What advantages a digital cable receiver can give you compared to the other two types of receivers and which disadvantages are associated with them, we would like to tell you in detail here.

Which cable receiver to buy? DVB-C, DVB-S or DVB-T?

If you’re a layman looking for an HD cable receiver, you may not be familiar with the basic differences between DVB-C, DVB-S, and DVB-T. A cable digital receiver or an HD receiver cable is a so-called DVB-C receiver. If you would like to receive your TV program via a cable connection, you will not be able to ignore this type of receiver, although you should keep in mind that you will be charged for cable connections on a monthly basis.

If you decide on a DVB-S receiver, this means that you are receiving your TV signal via an antenna. In order to use this type of receiver at all, you need a satellite key, which also incurs additional costs. However, you can benefit from the fact that you do not have to pay monthly TV cable fees for this type of television reception. Although there are no cable fees, there is one major drawback: if the weather is very bad, you may experience poor reception of the TV signal through your satellite dish.

If you want to watch TV in wind and weather without interference, this option is not the best choice for you. Nonetheless, there are always situations in which you will still opt for a satellite dish. This can be the case with your garden shed, for example. There will most likely be no cable connection. If you do not want to miss a major sporting event in your own power on the weekend, you may be able to fall back on a satellite dish and the matching DVB-S receiver.

You always need a DVB-T receiver if you want to receive the TV signal via the corresponding antenna. While in most major cities, good to very good reception quality can be assumed, this is usually not the case in more rural regions. There, the antenna reception usually includes only the public service TV stations in sufficiently good quality. If you also want to watch TV on your PC, you can also think about using a DVB-T stick. However, you should know that an HDTV signal cannot yet be received via DVB-T.

Cable Receiver – what to look for in the product selection?

What a cable receiver is good, you should now be aware. But what does it matter if you want to get a new digital receiver cable? Of course, we would like to give you not only a comprehensive cable HD receiver comparison at hand here. Rather, we have also put together a detailed cable receiver buying advice for you. Whether you should now opt for a model from Samsung, TechniSat or Opticum, is easier to see thanks to the following purchase criteria. Basically, these quality features are to be considered when buying:

  • The resolution
  • Twin tuner
  • What connections are available (USB, SCART, HDMI, etc.)
  • Whether a Ci + module is present
  • The additional functions
  • The ratings of other customers to the respective cable receiver
  • Independent reports on the respective model of different testing institutes (such as Stiftung Warentest)
  • The brand and its reputation
  • The scope of delivery – whether batteries for the remote control or the required HDMI cable are included, for example
  • Whether it is a receiver with or without a hard disk
  • For which cable provider you can use the receiver
  • Energy efficiency (best between A and A +++)
  • How fast the device switches to standby mode and the power consumption in this mode

Depending on which cable receiver you ultimately choose, you can fall back on a wide variety of connections. In order for you to enjoy a superior HD picture quality, an HDMI connection is a must. Through the HDMI port, you can also connect a projector with your cable receiver, so come in a brilliant Heimkinogenuss on the big screen. However, with older televisions, you will not find such a connection. Instead of an HDMI connection, only one SCART connection is available for these devices. If you are using an older TV, you should make sure that the required connection is available, otherwise, you will not be able to use your cable receiver.

Even a USB port is not available for all receivers for you. However, this connection may be important to you. This is the case, for example, if you want to connect an external hard disk to your receiver. Then you can finally use your cable receiver even more versatile as a media player. The presence of a USB interface is also accompanied by another, tangible advantage. Finally, you can also use the USB port to update the firmware on your receiver so that it is state-of-the-art.

In addition, some receivers on the market also have LAN or WLAN connections. If you want to take advantage of the Internet with your receiver, you should pay attention to this when buying. Finally, you have the opportunity to access the offer of various streaming services. Thus, you have an even more extensive TV enjoyment before you. So if you want to take advantage of this entertainment offer, it’s imperative to watch the Internet connectivity of your new cable receiver: 
Watchever, streaming YouTube videos, Maxdome, Amazon Prime, Netflix and Co. movies.

Does the new cable receiver that you’re interested in have a Ci + module? This may be important to you if your cable provider has sent you a SmartCard. This card can only be read in conjunction with a corresponding module. The SmartCard itself is responsible for forgetting to encrypt the received TV programs. Since different cable providers use different encryption methods, you should definitely choose a cable receiver that is compatible with your cable provider. Most receivers from our comparison can be convenient for receiving a TV signal via Sky or Cable Germany used. However, you should make sure at Kabel BW that your cable receiver is compatible with this cable provider. Unfortunately, this is not the case with all receivers that are currently available on the market.

Finally, it pays to think about what other features you expect from your cable receiver. From parental controls to media player functionality, the leading models on the market have plenty of practical extras to offer. The electronic program guide and the Teletext and subtitle function are now standard in many of the popular models on the market. Nonetheless, it pays to be very careful to make sure that the features you are looking for are actually on the device of your choice. For example, pay attention to the extent to which the receiver you finally decide on has a recording function and whether you want quick program changes without problems are possible. A simple, easy to understand menu, available in different languages, is also a big plus.

Cable Receiver Brands – These manufacturers vie for your favor as customers

Cable receivers are offered by many internationally renowned brands. Therefore, the choice may not be easy for you. We have listed the most important manufacturers in this field in the following for you :

  • Amiko, Aniston, Atomic and Axis
  • ComAG and CST
  • Denver, Digiquest, Digital box, Dream Multimedia, and Dyon
  • Edison, Emitor, and Lycos
  • Ferguson
  • HE @ D, Hirschmann, and Humax
  • Kathrein
  • Maximum, Medi @ link, Megasat, and Micro
  • NanoXX and New Line Electronic
  • Octagon and Opticum
  • Pace, Panasonic, and Philips
  • Sagem, Samsung, Schwaiger, SEG, Skymaster, Smart, Song, and Strong
  • TechniSat, Technotrend, Telefunken, Telestar, TelSKY, Thomson and Topsfield
  • Vantage, Venton and VU +
  • Week and Wise
  • Xoro and Xtrend

How to connect cable receiver? – practical tips

Of course, the well-known cable receiver manufacturers provide you with easy-to-understand instructions so that you can connect your cable receiver in no time at all. But we would also like to help you and have therefore put together the following quick guide for you:

  1. Connect the receiver to the mains via the power cable
  2. Use the SCART or HDMI jack to connect the receiver to the TV with the appropriate cable
  3. Connect the antenna cable to the cable receiver at the place provided

Already you can turn on the receiver and set it up. Again, thanks to the intuitive menu navigation of most cable receivers of the modern generation, it should be very easy, so you can watch TV in no time.

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