Mass Media & Technology

HOW to record from Sky?

(April 2017)

This site closed in March 2021 and is now a read-only archive
A former member
Is there any cheap options on how to record from SKY? Im still not sure how its even possible.

Its a shame there is some sort of USB recorder you could plug in or hdmi operate via a recording box between the sky and the telly.

I know sky boxes record, I want to take the idents of that and put them on my PC etc.
Via scart to a DVD recorder. I don't think you can record via HDMI as it has protection and does the handshake to prevent recording, so you can't record in HD as far as I know.
A former member
So a scart might be possible? I have the August DVB415 recorder. is possible to use that?
London Lite Founding member
Seems you can record HD from a Sky box.
Interesting video, in the description he says he is using a HBFury2. HDMI to VGA.

Looks like you need a lead called an RCA lead also to go from the VGA end to the HD PVR Box.

In addition you need a good spec PC. Lot of work just to record!

I'm not sure how this would work with copy protection, I thought Sky had made it impossible to use the RCA leads that were on the first generation HD boxes.
A former member
Nice video, but its well above price and simpleness I wish to try. What I thought might be possible is to have SKY BOX - another box with USB Driver in it that can record? You can get cheap boxes with USB drives in for tenner - £20. I can see a why to feed to run thought such a thing? Is that possible? What about sticking a USB drive in to a telly and recording that way? Iam being very simple on this subject?
If you could just record stuff to play on other devices, it would be an incredibly easy way to pirate all of the Sky content. As for letting just you record the encrypted data and play it back later through your Sky box, they already have that, it's called Sky+. There are lots of ways to do it, but none are cheap, easy and good quality.
Neil Jones Founding member
Item marked with C are copy-protected so can't be, um, copied Smile

Anything else though in theory should be copyable via SCART and apparently HDMI splitters do work as well.

This might be of interest if you haven't seen it already:
I have a similar set-up to the one in the video above, although mine seems less complicated than he describes it, and wasn't that expensive.

I don't record entire programmes, as that's what the STB is for, but I use it for captures and short clips for use on here.

It's the splitter to by-pass the HDCP that's important. They're cheap but not sold in this country. Mine is from the US. Without it, you get diddly squat in HD.

The Hauppage PVR comes with its own editing software, but it's a bit clunky and not as user friendly as the Pinnacle Studio 12 package I was used to.
Orry Verducci
HDMI capture cards are easy to come across, AVerMedia have a wide range with differing capabilities, and on the higher end you have Blackmagic Design's cards.

As said the big limiting factor is the HDCP copy protection used by Sky/Virgin/Freeview boxes, which the capture cards deliberately don't support.

As also mentioned, HDMI splitters that don't add back HDCP after splitting the signal can easily be used to defeat HDCP, although this is technically illegal. Splitters sold by retailers in the UK all add back HDCP so they won't work, but if you know where to look you can easily find cheap splitters online out of China that don't. At work I use these splitters to feed Sky without HDCP into modulators, which allow us to feed Sky to all the TVs in the venue over coax aerial lead, and they work a treat (we would have no signal otherwise).
Stuart and London Lite gave kudos
Slightly OT - but for a serial archiver like myself it does appear options are becoming fewer and fewer for keeping recordings of TV programmes. There are hardly any DVD recorders on the market anymore - Panasonic make a DVD recorder and a Blu Ray recorder, and that appears to be it (and these models will only record from the internal hard drive, rather than being able to archive from another box). It doesn't take a genius to work out that the business case to make these machines is far diminished as for the average viewer there isn't the need to make their own longer term recordings anymore as there are so many options to see their favourite shows again (with hard drive PVRs, catchup and streaming services).

It seems to me entirely possible that within a couple of years there might be no DVD recorders at all out there, which for someone like myself who has grown up with VHS and then DVDRs is a concern. I'd happily move to archiving the video files on a hard drive but as this thread is showing, it is far from straightforward. There was a recent article in Doctor Who Magazine along these lines pointing out we could actually be looking at far less continuity being preserved from this period than, say, 20 years ago because it is getting so difficult to actually keep anything! The only way I can really see to do it is to buy a cheap USB Freeview tuner which allows you to record programmes separately, but it seems a shame to completely divorce the process from the box under the TV. What arrangements do TV Forumers use?
I used to record a lot of TV on to DVD and Blu Ray. I still have a Freesat HD Blu Ray recorder, however I don't use it to archive anything now unless there is a big event. Last time I used it was for the Olympics. Now it just sits there turned off. I don't even have a PVR for everyday use, I just use catch up and on-demand.

These days we have Youtube and lots of content is uploaded onto there, if there is something I want to keep, most of the time someone has added it and I make a copy. Physical media is certainly on the way out, I think it will always exist, and there will always be recorders available, but they will be high end and expensive. The Blu-Ray recorder I have cost about £450 if I remember right, so I won't be ditching it seeing as they are so hard to come by, I just hope it does not break.

Newer posts