French Channels

Installing French satellite tv in the Uk

Sky and Virgin to Cease TV5 monde and French News

Bad news for most UK viewers, used to having France 24 news ( in French) .

Sky has stopped broadcasting the French language version of France 24  although the English version is still on.

From the France 24 website:

So from next year 2019 it will only be on OTT ( iptv ) so unless you have a suitable  (Vision)  Android box or smart  tv it won’t be available for you.

Also TV5 monde – Sky channel 717, ended 30th November 2018

and Virgin will stop in January.

Extract  from Sky Forum 30thNov2018:


Why tv5 monde has disappeared ? No access anymore to channel 717 (french channel tv5 monde), All my scheduled recording from this  channel have disappeared as well. Now we have message “channel unavailable”,

Does it mean we don t have this channel anymore ?

Thanks to let me know

The solution – easy, I can supply and fit a Free-to-Air satellite system  that receive both TV5monde and France24 in French OR Fransat, TNT to receiver ALL the main French channels TF1, France 2,3,4,5,M6,Arte……etc

French Channels Available in the UK

Welcome to french   If you would like to see whats happening at home in France, I can supply and fit TNT, Fransat, BIS and Canal+ equipment, anywhere in England Wales or Scotland

Fransat and TNT are the most popular French services , now easily available in great quality HD over satellite. No buffering problems like iptv, always available and not a huge dish.

In fact , if you already have Sky uk or Freesat, the French TNT service can be added so that both are on the same dish. See One Dish Post

Multi Room

Don’t forget, you can have Fransat in more than one room, in fact you can now add a NAS network drive to your multi-room , giving you the option to for example , record from the lounge and playback that recording in the bedroom. For more details see my full article

French And English Satellite tv on ONE dish

A question often asked is “I have Sky UK and I would like French tv but I would prefer just one dish ( or I am not allowed more than one dish )

Well if you go for TNT the service from Astra 1 satellite, then its easy, even if your Sky service is the latest SkyQ , I can provide a dish that does both.

Original Sky Dish ( Sky, Sky+ , or SkyQ )

Original Sky Dish ( Sky, Sky+ , or SkyQ )

Replacement dish for UK ( Sky or Freesat ) AND TNT France

Replacement dish for UK ( Sky or Freesat ) AND TNT France

To order or Inquire, please use the Quote Button in the sidebar and mention “one dish” in the comments/requirements box

Humax TN5000 TNT problem solved

This ONLY applies to customers having the popular TNT Humax model, TN5000HD.
Usually TNT boxes are updated over the satellite without issue, but this time the changes to the card required the Humax team to prepare a special update. The following message on their site explains…
Chère cliente, Cher client,
Suite à une mise à jour vous avez perdu les signaux de votre décodeur TN5000HD. Afin de pouvoir récupérer la personnalisation et par conséquent les signaux, merci d’allumer décodeur et téléviseur, et rester sur la chaine 7 ARTE durant 30 minutes.
Merci de nous excuser pour la gêne occasionnée.
Which translates as follows:
Dear Client
Following an update, you have lost signal to your TN5000HD. In order to retrieve the settings and therefore the signal, please switch on the receiver and the tv, and leave it on channel 7 Arte for 30 minutes
My  thanks to Benoit for finding this and letting me know.
In June or July 2019 an update left some Humax receivers with incomplete channel lists, mainly TF1 is the channel affected,  to correct this go through the transponder list and update the main 2 frequencies
11856  and 12404
they need to be symbol rate 29700, S2 ( HD ) modulation 8PSK FEC 2/3
Once corrected do a  retune ( Manual ) and your list should be returned to normal. 
You can also update the BAT transponders in the system  menu – same outcome.

BeIN Sport Update

If you currently have BeIN sport with your Fransat pack, it is important to upgrade your software NOW! This should be done before the end of April 2018.


The request email from Fransat reads:

In order to fight even more efficiently against piracy, beIN Sport decided to pair cards to receivers or CAMS, while upgrading to high secure CW64bits.

By the end of april 2018, we’ll have to confirm the Chipset ID of the equipment used with the smart card. This information has to come along the brand and model of the receiver or module.

The Chipset can be found on the backside of the modules (Neotion & Smit), or for fransat receivers, by consulting the corresponding menu.

How to get the chipset_id ?

1. If you have a Viaccess Secure (Neotion or SMIT) module, the chipset number can be found on the back label
neotion chipset

2. If you have a FRANSAT receiver, the information is usually in the menu “information on the receiver” or “Via Eutelsat” or “smart card, then identification STB”

Please reply directly to this email and complete the 3 following fields:


Chipset ID

Trade mark


TF1 Channel to cease broadcasting on TNT due to break down in fees Agreement

After 18 months of talks to agree fees, between TF1 and Canal+ , a stalemate has been reached and Canal+ will now cease to carry ie broadcast the TF1 channel.

TNT sat and Canalsat are both affected, so don’t worry, your receiver and card is not at fault.

In a press release Canal+ announced “it was terminating the distribution of the TF1 group’s channels because it could not reach a commercial agreement with the group, whose “unreasonable and unfounded financial requirements”

The TF1 group includes the channels TF1, TMC, TFX, TF1 Séries Films, LCI and their associated services, so expect that these channels will not be back on air until an agreement is reached.

Previously the TF1 group provided the services free, but now want to charge a fee. Canal plus is refusing to pay their fees and it has sued the TF1 Group before the Paris Commercial Court to contest its claims. In 2017 it  filed an appeal with the Conseil d’État against the CSA’s decision to simplify the renewal of the TF1 agreement that the latter had announced its intention to change  its method of financing.

TF1 is accused of abusing its power, it was granted the national frequencies and  number one slot in French tv public domain and extensions for all its other channels. Plus as it enjoys these benefits and has regulatory advantages specific to free channels re the broadcasting of big sporting events for example the Football world cup. Canal Plus are contending that it is the viewers who will suffer under this unreasonable demand.

Update 9th March:

The French ministry of culture has demanded that Canal+  resume its distribution of TF1 by TNT satellite as there are at least  one and a half million French households which can only view  the channel by satellite.

Viewers in France who receive via aerial ( terrestrial )  meanwhile have seen TF1 move from its regular no1  channel to number 51 as standby frequencies are brought in to fill demand while the broadcasters fight it out.




Fransat Cards Change Encryption in December 2017

The process of updating the encryption used on the standard Fransat HD cards comes to an end in December, it has been in progress since May.

You may be faced with a blank screen now or soon, the process of updating the cards has actually been going on since may 2017.

For newer cards ( 05 type or 06 type ) all that is required is to take it out and re-insert, the process will then automatically update it and viewing usually starts soon after.

For older (  04 type ) cards , you will have to purchase a new card, as these are now incompatible with the changes.


To check it, enter your card number in the popup on the home page of the Fransat official website

Unfortunately the Fransat website or French Dealers are not allowed to sell out of French territory. For my own customers – please email me after applying the above test.  CLICK  THIS LINK TO GO TO FRANSAT.FR

Russian Channel to Launch RT France in December 2017

RT , originally Russia Today, is to launch its French service , based in Boulogne Billancourt just outside Paris, as a satellite and terrestrial channel this coming month.  The service is Mpeg4 ( HD )

Update: RT frequency on the Astra 1 (TNT) satellite : 11376 s/r 22000 , the  English HD and Spanish HD services from RT are on the same frequency. All channels FTA free to air

On the Eutelsat ( Fransat) Satellite frequency is 11595 s/r 29950 HD  it is also FTA.

RT will no doubt be providing their usual “interesting mix” and Russian slant on French Affairs on the new channel. Xenia Fedorova the President of RT France commented: “France is a country with a storied legacy of respect for the freedom of expression and embrace of new ideas. We have created a platform dedicated to profiling the widest range of opinions in France and beyond”

Certainly Mr Macron, outspoken critic of RT during his election campaign will have more to say on RTs reporting, especially on the RT website…. keep watching!

Free French channels finishing from Eutelsat

Oh Dear, more bad news!

for all those with FTA ( free to air) receivers, your favourite channels France 2, 3 and 4 are  to finish in mid November this year.

The announcement came at the end of October, bringing to an end the free reception of these channels going back to the analogue transmissions pre 2011 and to TPS back in 2002 .  The channels will go between 16th and 22nd  of November 2016.

So, if you currently rely on these Free channels from Eutelsat 5w ( formerly known as Atlantic Bird 3 ) what can you do?

Channels affected: France 2, France 3, France 4, France ô and LCP

The solution if you just require French channels, would be to purchase a Fransat HD receiver.


If you require multi language reception, for example Italian, Spanish, German …. as well as the French channels, it will certainly be more difficult, as the current cam units are NOT suitable for STB  ( set top box ) type receivers, but will work in some recent tv receivers. Due to piracy the encryption  has been upgraded, due to rights issues the encryption now includes cam functions, most importantly recordings. The result is, they have made it as hard as possible to use anything but an original Fransat box.

To a degree, the Fransat receivers can be used to tune in other satellites, but organising the resulting channels is very limited. Some STBs from Fransat are better than others and I’ll be  testing out the various models and reporting here as time goes on. The Humax for example is looking like the best so far.

One point to watch is firmware/software updates. Like Skyboxes, updates completely wipe out any customisation you have made to your Fransat box, so its important to make a note exactly how you retune , to gain back your Italian or Spanish etc. after the update has been completed.  This generally will come down to noting which port on your dish switch ( diseqc switch) is connected to which LNB. Once that has been set up, tuning ” recherche globale” is fairly easy.  Use the favourite selection system to store the non french channels.

Fransat France5 No Sound Problem Solved

Engineers at Fransat have found the mysterious no-sound  problem, only on the France 5 channel over the last few weeks, details are not available but it has now been rectified. france5

Thanks to the few customers who emailed in about this.

HD French television by satellite TNT Fransat and BIS update



So here we are in June 2016 and past the big shift to HD in French broadcasting.  BIS, Fransat and TNT now have a full line up of all the main channels , in HD quality.

tnt fransat BIS

There was a lot of on screen messages shown to warn viewers , but still many didn’t get the importance of it all, until the big “switch off” was upon us, on 25th May and they were left with blank screens. Some HD receivers ran out of stock but not many, all in all a pretty smooth operation. BIS were the last to go through these changes, giving their subscribers time to buy CAMS capable of the new “viaccess secure” encryption. At least it was done in stages, with just a couple of channels going for the new standard  first, then everyone could see whether the change would affect them ( with the older receivers and cams ) and then changing all BIS channels over to the new system.

The prices for Fransat HD receivers in particular had come down to very manageable amounts by the time the changeover was about to happen. Strong in particular, a very popular brand, making both TNT and Fransat HD models were available at a good price. All new HD receivers for TNT and Fransat from me are supplied with a new card by the way, don’t try to use your old card!  Similarly avoid buying on Amazon . fr unless you know for sure that it comes with a card, some don’t and you will quickly find that Fransat cards are not available for sale anywhere.

One major advantage of the HD mpeg4 format is the ease of making recordings, all products now have the USB socket, almost all PC type USB powered “ portable” style drives can be used to make recordings, by nothing more than plugging in a USB drive. Some TNT boxes I have noted, require that the format is changed, the old FAT32 format is still the de facto standard, with all French boxes, so if your drive came with a more recent file structure on it, like NTFS, be prepared to have to reformat. On most receivers however this is now trivial, there will be a formatting procedure somewhere in the menu. On older boxes, you had to first use a PC, to change this to FAT and that was not easy as PCs have long since abandoned this option. I still have a download available for anyone wanting it, on the main website. ( ) download the GUIFormat.exe file.

As new receivers have come onto the market, the number which are net capable is increasing. Be certain that it is set up correctly though,  for example the Aston Maya Fransat model will continually try to search and put up on screen any WiFi network it sees, unless it is set up from scratch ( first installation ) . This can be very annoying as it prevents you watching anything. If you do not want any of the online services, then skip this step when first setting up the box.

Strong 7405_450

Latest Strong 7405 HD Fransat ( TNT model 7404 ) with card Available here at £144 incl post .              Click to email and order

Overall the most noticeable thing about the latest French receivers , is the much better reliability, far fewer returns than with the older SD (standard definition) boxes. The driving force behind this is probably the Korean and Taiwanese giants who produce the major part of the entertainment electronics segment , available today. Their complete dominance of the market has driven standards up. A look at worldwide patents in electronics will quickly show how these once poor quality copycat product manufacturers have now turned the tables with innovation and top design. Have you got a Samsung phone in your pocket or an LG tv on your wall? South Korea many years ago made a mad dash for the top, by introducing a country wide 100Mbs internet system, when at the time we in England were only just seeing the change from dial up!  Hey if anyone from Virgin is reading this, why is my so called 50mbs internet only capable of 1.7mbs after 4pm?

For those just receiving the free to air channels on the Atlantic bird 3 ( new name Eutelsat 5W ) satellite, there was a surprise in store. For many years, mirroring the old channel line up on the analogue transmissions, France 2,3 and 5 were free. Now, with the new HD channels, it is France 2,3 and 4 that are available free , plus one or two freebies like BFM , Dici tv, TV5 Monde , GrandLille tv, TV8Mont Blanc , KTO and Vosges and France Ô with its Caribbean programming is still there too. Why there was this changeover is not clear. France5 is available only with TNT, Fransat or Canal Plus but not with the FTA receivers.  If you need to check the frequencies here is a useful link:



Got a French HD box but still no channels and message to update to HD

I have had a couple of phone calls about this. The user already has a proper HD TNT or Fransat receiver and card, but is receiving the onscreen message ” please update your receiver to an  HD model, to continue viewing after the 25th April ”

non TV

This is possibly because the new receiver was installed with the SD Fransat or SD TNT bouquet of channels. If you have ever installed one, it is the very last option to choose, before it starts working properly. It is easy to overlook and there is no way to tell which bouquet has been used, after the installation is complete, as up to the 25th April, the channels worked as  normal.

The solution is fairly simple, to reinstall completely. Choose “factory reset” or ” first time install” option in the SYSTEM menu ( these are fairly similar on both TNT and Fransat , throughout the different makes and models that are available. It will then show the first time installation menu, where you can choose install language, tuning……….. right through to the bouquet choice.

It looks like the software now takes care of the correct choice, I installed a Fransat box yesterday 29th April and this last choice no longer has to be made, the box automatically chose HD without any input from me

BIS encryption changes on 12 April 2016

BIS Viaccess Changes:

For our subscribers to Bis Television, there are changes to the type of encryption today on 3 of their channels, so all receivers without the correct BIS cam or older versions which are now incompatible, will no longer be able to receive pictures from W9, D8 and BIS !

Check that you still receive these NOW, from 25th April ALL BIS channels will go to the new secure Viaccess version and you will receive NO channels at all.

Please contact us for sales of the correct BIS cam



Bis Card

French Satellite goes All HD in April 2016

In April 2016 all TNT and Fransat broadcasts will be in MPEG4 standard . Completion date is set to 25th April, so make sure you are up to date before then.

This means you will need an  HD receiver to carry on watching your TNT or Fransat channels. Those of you with my Free channel packages using the Multi lnb dishes will be unaffected.

Strong n Card_450

Strong HD TNT and Fransat receivers – recommended


I don’t know if my box is HD?

  1. If there is no HDMI tv socket on the back, it will be SD and you need a new box
  2. Turn to TF1  – If the TF1 logo is  on the RIGHT side of the screen , it is already in HD. If not, you need to purchase a new HD box.

Will the dish need changing?

No the dish needs no attention, as long as you have a good signal ,it will work with the new HD Mpeg4 boxes.

My TV is the old “standard definition” will I be able to watch after the change over?

YES all of the HD boxes I supply have the SD scart socket as well as the new HDMI socket for the televisions

Which Channels  are Affected?

All 25 National channels will change to Mpeg4 / HD

How can I order  a new box?

Use the contact me form – tell me if you require TNT or Fransat and i’ll send you a list of the current best receivers and prices including postage. You can pay online. Your box will be sent out directly.

I’m not technical – How will I set up my new box?

Don’t worry, in 99% of cases, you simply switch it on and follow the on-screen prompts. For most viewers the default answer will get you back up and viewing perfectly. I will provide any help you need by email or phone.