Topfield TF5810PVRt Personal Video Recorder - Topfield TF5810PVRt

By Danny Phillips



  • Recommended by TR
Topfield TF5810PVRt Personal Video Recorder


Our Score:


In action the unit is wonderfully slick; changing channels in less than a second and sailing through menu options without any pauses - all of which makes the user experience a pleasant one. Even when it's busy recording two channels, you can access the EPG and carry out other functions without any detrimental effect on performance. On the downside, the remote is heavy on buttons, but among them are dedicated buttons to change the aspect ratio and HDMI resolution, plus a convenient Options button that brings up a mini menu of key functions.

If you hit record while watching a programme, the unit will record for a set amount of time (the default is two hours) and won't stop at the end of the programme unless you tell it to, which is a slight niggle in an otherwise a magnificent operating system.

Freeview picture quality is right out of the top drawer. The HDMI output and HD upscaling prove their worth, subjectively giving the image an extra boost of sharpness and clarity that you don't get from the RGB SCART. Colours are powerful too, and although there's evidence of MPEG block noise (which is sadly part and parcel of Freeview broadcasts) it's nothing more than a minor distraction and some channels look better than others. Also impressive is the stability of the tuners and the quality of recordings, which look identical to the original live broadcast.


Ladies and gentlemen, say hello to your new PVR champion. The Humax PVR-9200T has finally been ousted from power and replaced by a superior product that adds a greater hard-disk capacity and an HDMI output, as well as delivering a flawless performance and a magnificent user interface. But such brilliance comes at a price - at around £300, the TF5810PVRt is expensive, particularly when you compare it to the sub-£200 asking price for the Humax. But if money is no object (and if you don't fancy subscribing to Sky) then this is the best Freeview PVR we've encountered.

Overall Score


Scores In Detail

  • Performance 10
  • Value 7
  • Features 9

Mike D

September 16, 2008, 11:53 pm

Having read the Digital Spy user comments on this equipment at where 23 users give an average rating of one star (awful!) it is vey difficult to relate the equipment you reviewed with what is being sold to the public.

Michael Stafford

October 18, 2008, 12:02 pm

I was going to buy one of these machines, but the web is littered with adverse comments on the 5810, so I have cancelled. I am curious to know "Trusted Reviews" response to such one sided customer experience. Do you stand by your review or would you like to retest?


June 28, 2009, 2:51 pm

I unfortunately bought one of these when they first came out. It is going back for the third time for hardware repair next week.

There is no EPG search function, the grid EPG only shows 4 channels at a time, there is no page up/down on most screens, the digital teletext does not always render correctly and the series link functionality is buggy.

Unless you _really_ need the advanced functionality (TAPs), then look elsewhere.

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