Print Posted By Lost in France on 10 Nov 2007 in Living in France - TV, Satellite and Radio in France

Bought a House in France - Want to Know About Satellite TV?

Q. Our new house already has a satellite dish installed but no other equipment.

A. Depending on whether you bought the house from English or French owners, the dish may need re-aligning to the correct satellite to receive BBC, ITV and radio. The LNB (the receiver on the arm of the dish) may need replacing, as may the cable. This will depend on when the equipment was originally installed and the quality of the equipment used.

Q. Can we bring our television from the UK - is it compatible with French systems?

A. French and British TV are broadcast in different formats and to receive both of these on the same TV, it must be capable of receiving both PAL and SECAM formats. The TV manual should give you this information.

Q. What we need is a system that allows us to receive as many UK TV channels and Radio stations as possible, without any subscription charges. If our existing TV will work then will we just need a Digibox?

A. If you do not wish to watch Channels 4 and 5 you can buy a Free-To-Air digital satellite receiver, which will give you all the BBC and ITV channels and 60-70 English radio stations. However, these receivers do not have card reader slot so you would not be able to receive Channels 4 & 5 or any other subscription channels, which currently require a card.

{loadposition contentad}If you wish to receive Channels 4 & 5, you will need a Sky Digibox and a FreeSat card for Channels 4 & 5. This is not a subscription card but a one-off payment card. If you then wish to subscribe to Sky at a later date this can be facilitated but involves changing the card. Presently Sky subscriptions start from £15.00 per month, increasing to £43.50 per month for a complete package.

Q. Will we also be able to receive French TV stations ?

A. French TV can be received either by terrestrial antenna or by satellite dish and receiver. Do you have a French terrestrial antenna on the house? If you do, it could possibly be plugged straight into the back of the TV (if your TV can accommodate the correct format). The quality of the reception depends on your proximity to the nearest transmitter and the position of the house e.g. on top of a hill or in a valley. The reception and quality of French TV by antenna can be very variable.

The same French TV channels are also broadcast by satellite but regrettably from a different satellite to the one used by the BBC. Therefore you would need another satellite dish and receiver but reception by satellite is very good.

About the Author

The author Chris Adamson runs Orbit Home Technologies a Satellite TV Specialist. You can contact Chris on 0033 (0), visit his website at or by email [email protected]


What do you think?

Join Our Newsletter - Today