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Test Report for Fortec Star FSHD-4900

Fortec Star FSHD-4900


The FSHD-4900 is a digital satellite receiver with HD reception. Form the outside this beautiful receiver fits smoothly into the corporate design of the Fortec Star receiver line. A black case, a four digit display behind a black glass window covering more than half of the front panel and front buttons are present on the front panel. So far so good, there's nothing to criticize about the receiver's looks. The rear panel has all the necessary connections which are available in any High Definition receiver. The remote control is nicely shaped and sits easily in your hand. The layout allows intuitive use of the control. The initial installation does not pose any problems, provided that you understand the factory-set language of the receiver.


Contrary to many competitors' receivers, the FSHD-4900 does not show a welcome screen asking you to select your preferred language before anything else, but starts with the main menu. But once this initial obstacle is overcome the box offers a whole universe of setting and configuration options, keeping up with Fortec Star's image in that respect. For a first-time user the installation menu may look confusing and 'too much too soon' at first, but the logical user interface allows scanning a specific satellite without much fuss after clicking no more than two buttons. This makes the FSHD-4900 a receiver that is perfectly suited for less experienced users as well.

The FSHD-4900 will not disappoint customers during any operation. While even the pre-programmed configurations are sure to meet most demands, the receiver nonetheless allows manually setting or adding almost anything you like. The options range from the list of pre-stored satellites, which can be extended or edited, to the transponder list with manual editing features. Various languages are available for communication. Aligning the antenna is made easy thanks to an exact signal strength and quality indicator and motorized systems can be set up in a whizz using the integrated DiSEqC protocols up to 1.2 and USALS. Scanning for channels is always a very quick affair with Fortec Star receivers, and the FSHD-4900 is no exception. In fact, the box scanned the major European ASTRA position at 19.2° East in just over three minutes, with activated network search. Channel switching is fast, one second goes by before the selected channel will appear on the screen. If you switch to an encrypted channel which has to go through the inserted common interface module and smartcard the switching time is even longer than that. While it is true that there are slower model on the market, it is nonetheless a fact that the channel switching time is not one of this receiver's unique selling points, and even the different switching modes like an elegant fading out and in cannot completely disguise this.


However, the most important thing for the owner of a HDTV receiver is the video quality the box provides. And this is where we have to nothing but praise Fortec Star. Not only HDTV channels are displayed perfectly but also the traditional channels can be output as 576p, 720p or 1080i.

The EPG has a smart design and loads the required information reasonably fast. Especially for marking certain events for recording the EPG is a very useful feature. Fortec Star FSHD-4900 has the capacity to store 5000 TV and Radio channels.

Fortec Star FSHD-4900 generates sub-titles and teletext in both ways: as VBI and OSD. You can choose what suits you better. If your TV-set does not have a TV TXT decoder, you can use OSD mode. If it has such a decoder and your language is not in the receiver language list for teletext, you better use VBI mode and the decoder in a TV-set.



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