How to get French satellite TV in the UK
“Bonjour!” in a lousy French accent.
Seeing as I have specifically been asked this week, I’m am going to share with you how exactly you can get French satellite TV here in the UK. This guide will show you everything from the satellite dish that you will need for French TV in the UK, the satellite receiver the packages and so on.
What satellites do I use to get French TV in the UK?
You have a couple of options here and it would depend on your specific circumstances somewhat. If you are looking for FTA or free French TV I would suggest opting to use either a satellite dish aligned to 19.2E of south to the Astra 1 satellites or a satellite dish aligned to Eutelsat 5 at 5W. Although there is French TV on many other satellites such as the Hotbird satellites at 13E. Both Astra 1 and Eutelsat offer far more options and the most common for subscribers to French satellite TV.
As you will see and find out more about in this blog, the vast majority of French satellite TV, unlike the UK is encrypted meaning you will require specialised set top boxes and receivers in order to be able to receive it. I suggest buying the official box for the package you are trying to receive. Fransat box for Fransat, TNTSat for TNTSat and so on.
Eutelsat 5 – 5W - Fransat
The reason you may want to consider aligning your satellite dish to Eutelsat 5 at 5W would be to get Fransat which is sort of the French equivalent to Freesat. This is completely subscription free satellite TV service from France which offers all the main TV stations. To get Fransat in the UK, a minimum dish size of 65cm is suggested for the south of England and an 80cm satellite dish for the North of England and Scotland. You will then also require a cable connecting to an official Fransat receiver or generic satellite receiver with a Fransat CAM (Condition access module) and Smartcard. Fransat is free for the entirety of it’s with only one payment.
What TV stations can I receive on Fransat?
The main TV stations such as TF1, France 2 and France 3 can all be received on Fransat with many more. Click here for more information on Fransat.
Astra 1 – 19.2E - TNTSat
One of the reasons you may consider aligning your satellite dish to Astra 1 would be to receive TNTSat, this again is a subscription free satellite TV service from France which also has all the major channels like Fransat. To receive TNTSat in the UK a small satellite dish would be required, a minimum dish size of 45cm in the south of the UK and 60cm for the North of England and Scotland. The satellite dish used for your Sky and Freesat service would not be unsuitable but this would have to be re-aligned from 28.2E to 19.2E. This usually is an easy job but can be very tricky without the correct equipment. It is also worth noting that the dish may have to be re-located if there are any nearby obstructions such as walls and trees. As well as the satellite dish an official TNTSat receiver set top box or generic satellite receiver with a TNTSat Smartcard and CAM. One main disadvantage of TNTSat opposed to Fransat is that the Smart card that comes with the box needs renewing every four years and this comes at a cost. Although relatively inexpensive to purchase in France it usually costs about £80 to do this from the UK so you should consider this before choosing TNTSat. But £20 per year is quote reasonable I believe. One main advantage to TNTSat over Fransat opposed to it already being on a satellite which is easier to receive in the UK is that the system can be upgraded to Canel+ at any time which is France’s version of Sky TV.
What stations can I receive on TNTSat?
The main TV stations such as TF1, France 2 and France 3 can all be received from TNTSat. Click here for more information on TNTSat channels. Warning this particular website is in French. I couldn’t find one in English.
Astra 1 – 19.2E – Canal+ - Canalsat
Canal+ or Canalsat is a subscription based premium TV service from France. Like TNTSat a suggested minimum dish size of 45cm for the south of and England and 60cm for the north of England and Scotland is suggested aligned to the Astra 1 satellites at 19.2E. You will also need a TNTSat receiver or equivalent or TNTSat Smart Card and CAM with appropriate satellite receiver. As TNTSat is a subscription based TV service it may be difficult to do this from a UK address so it may also need registering at a French address. If you have any friends or family in France and you want to get TNTSat here in the UK now is the time to add them to your Christmas card list! Or e-mail if you are like me.
What channels can I get on Canal+?
I hope that this blog was of some use and interest to you. If you liked it and would like to read more of the same please leave a comment in the comments section below.
P.S Please get in touch if you would like to book your own French satellite TV installation in Sussex and South Kent.
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