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Test Report for AbCom IPBOX 9000 HD Plus

AbCom IPBOX 9000 HD Plus

The IPBOX 9000 HD Plus receiver's front panel comes with the standard standby button, an easy to read alphanumeric VFD display and stylishly hidden behind a flap eight buttons to control the box whenever the remote is not at hand or out of battery.Turning around the IPBOX 9000 HD Plus reveals a perfectly equipped back panel.

What strikes right away is the fact that the two tuners are not permanently integrated but rather only plugged in as modules.

So if you would like to not only receive DVB-S and DVB-S2 signals, but rather also DVB-T or DVB-C, all you have to do is open the receiver and exchange one tuner (or both) for a different one. Right next to the slots for the two tuners two scart euroconnectors are available to connect a CRT TV or a conventional VCR.

The remote control that comes with the package sits nicely in your hand, boasts clearly labelled buttons and given the enormous range of features offered by this box – isnot filled to the brim with keys and buttons. By default the IPBOX 9000 HD Plus comes with a list of 161 currently active satellites which – apart from all relevant European positions – includes Asian and American birds as well. By and large the transponder lists seem to be up to date, even though we detected some weak spot for a few satellites, such as NILESAT 7° West, for example.

The LOF can of course also be set manually so that all varieties of LNBs aresupported. Control signals such as 22 kHz can be manually activated or you can let the receiver arrange all settings automatically.

Finally, the installation wizard prompts the user to initiate a signal scan. Once the scan is completed you're all set to actually use the box for watching and listening.

Before that, however, it's a good idea to flick through the main menu and familiarise yourself with all the features that are available. One of them is the extremely convenient transponder editor that allows adding new transponders to the satellite list in a breeze. Alternatively, you can also edit or delete existing entries.

As the IPBOX 9000 HD Plus is based on the Linux operating system it can access all available and enabled drives and directories in a local network thanks to its Ethernet port. To that end mount points for NFS and CIFS are available. This way individual directories or complete hard disks (for example with MP3 audio files or image files) can be enabled and accessed with the receiver. Once the initial setup is completed you can leave the main menu and let the receiver tune into the first channel on the list. Pressing the OK button prompts the clearly laid out channel list to appear on screen, with a small preview window in the right section of the screen showing the currently selected channel.

To access the entire program details provided by the individual channels all you have to do is press the EPG button. With another touch of the same button you can call up extended information about the selected event and with the RECORD button you can set a timer entry for recording that event.

Every time you switch to a new channel or press the INFO button on the remote control the receiver inserts a cleverly arranged info bar with icons indicating features like Dolby Digital audio, teletext, subtitles, broadcasting standard etc. In addition the bar informs viewers which tuner is in use and which satellite transmits the currently watched channel. Two coloured meters let you know the level of signal strength and quality.



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