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Leave it to Slideshow Bob




Freesat and FTA (Free To Air) Facts & Channel Listings

So, what are Freesat and FTA?

What’s the difference?

Well, both are completely FREE TV and radio broadcast services. There are no subscriptions or monthly charges to pay - ever.

The main difference between them is what equipment you need to receive these two different methods of broadcast.

For Freesat you need a satellite dish and satellite receiver set-top box.

For FTA (Free to Air) you need a terrestrial aerial and either a digital set top box or a TV that has the capability (IDTV) built in. In Ireland, for instance, the service is known as Saorview. In the UK it is known as FTA.

Now for the other difference - the channel line up. Both services vary in the channel line up. While the satellite channel line up (Freesat) is the same for everyone who points their satellite dish at a particular satellite (e.g. Astra 2A, 2D or Eutelsat in Europe), the terrestrial FTA channel line up varies depending on which country you are in.

If you wish to receive channels from both Freesat and FTA, you can opt for a set-top box that combines the two signals. You still need to install a satellite dish and terrestrial aerial. Both of these feed into the set-top box and are connected as a combined source to your TV.

Many of the free channels on Freesat and FTA are now in HD (High Definition).

Saorview (FTA) Channel List

RTE 1 
RTE News Now
RTE Jnr 
RTE 1 +1

Freesat Channel List

Channel 4
BBC Three
BBC Four
BBC HD - High Definition
BBC ALBA Scotland - Gaelic
ITV2 +1
ITV3 +1
ITV4 +1
S4C Digidol (Wales)
Channel 4 + 1
E4 +1
More4 +1
CBS Drama
CBS Reality
CBS Action
Zone Horror
Zone Horror + 1
BET + 1
BBC News
BBC Parliament
S4C2 (Wales)
Al Jazeera English
France 24
Russia Today
Bloomberg Television
NHK World TV
CNBC Europe

Film4 +1
True Movies
True Movies 2

Wedding TV
Wedding TV asia
Information TV
Rural TV
Food Network
Food Network +1

price-drop tv
bid tv
Pitch TV
Pitch World
Gems TV
TV Shop
Shop on TV
JML Cookshop
Best Direct
Ideal World
Netplay TV Gaming channel
Smart Live TV Gaming channel
Gala TV Gaming channel
Other BBC Regions

Chart Show TV
The Vault
B4U Music
Zee Music
Clubland TV

Tiny POP

Specialist / Education
Teachers TV
Inspiration TV
Daystar TV
Revelation TV

RTÉ Radio 1
RTÉ 2fm
RTÉ lyric fm
RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta
RTÉ Choice
RTÉ Pulse
RTÉ Gold
RTÉ Chill
Radio 1 Extra

Remember, the channel lists above are subject to change.
The Freesat channel list is not exhaustive as the content depends on which satellite you point your dish at.
You can receive channels from more than one satellite without moving your dish as, say, Astra and Eutelsat are pretty close to each other. Normally the dish is pointed at Astra 2A and the other satellites are still visible from this location.
However, a lot depends on the functionality built into the set-top box (i.e. can it mix channels from multiple satellites?).

If you wish to comment on this tip, then please do so here in the Blog.

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Slideshow Bob’s Star Sign is Aquarius.

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