Pages: [1]   Go Down
Print
Author Topic: Will US applicances, TV and electrical equipment work in UK with converters?  (Read 1950 times)
dvpetta
Newcomer
*

Reputation: 0
Offline Offline

Posts: 16



« on: May 28, 2011, 04:01:50 PM »

Hey Everyone,

Just wanted to first off say thanks, this is a great forum, I've been reading it non stop since I found it and it's been truly helpful!

We just got married and have a bunch of kitchen appliances and home theater equipment we want to take with us to London later this year and I'm worried about what we can take with us. 

I'm hoping that we can take all our kitchen appliances, hook them up to a voltage converter (http://www.voltageconverters.com/voltage_converters.html) and plug them into a powerstrip and not have problems?  Has anyone had experience in this?

Also, the TV we have here in the US is pretty dated so I'm wondering if it would be cheaper to buy one here and ship out to the UK (company paid freight) or wait and get a HD LCD/plasma one there?  Prices here in the US are pretty reasonable but would I be playing with fire if the converter blows out and the TV gets affected?  I understand there is some kind of equipment you would have to buy to use a US TV in the UK?

Thanks,

Daniel

Logged
camoscato
Swami
*****
United Kingdom

Reputation: 44
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Location: Biggleswade
Posts: 2401



WWW
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2011, 04:19:03 PM »

Hi Daniel and welcome!

I don't know enough about kitchen appliances and voltage converters to say for sure what you should do.  My gut feeling is you ought to leave all your stuff in the US, but maybe someone is running all their kitchen appliances through a converter and loves it.  Hopefully someone will chime in soon.

Also, the TV we have here in the US is pretty dated so I'm wondering if it would be cheaper to buy one here and ship out to the UK (company paid freight) or wait and get a HD LCD/plasma one there?  Prices here in the US are pretty reasonable but would I be playing with fire if the converter blows out and the TV gets affected?  I understand there is some kind of equipment you would have to buy to use a US TV in the UK?

I wouldn't bring a TV over.  Aside from the voltage issues you might run into, there's also the difference in standards (put simply, the UK and US use different video formats), and the fact that most UK video components (TVs, DVD players, satellite boxes, etc) use a connection type that US TVs do not (it's called a SCART if you're curious).

Flat screen TVs are cheap enough in the UK that you should have no problem finding one easily.

Hope that helps!

ciao,
Carl

Logged

There is no such thing as a video emergency.
My Demo Reel
Sara Smile
Guru
*****

Reputation: 19
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Location: Back and Forth
Posts: 1635




« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2011, 06:52:43 PM »

TV - no.  Other electronics - some will, some won't depending on the voltage.  You can use a converter but loads of people have found it reduces the life of the appliance. 

Personally, I am about to move to the US and we just agreed to replace all electronics.  Saves hassle.
Logged
dvpetta
Newcomer
*

Reputation: 0
Offline Offline

Posts: 16



« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2011, 11:56:56 PM »

Thanks for the updates, they are helpful.  I can see what you say about a TV.  Do either of you have any recommendations of where to buy a good flat screen at a reasonable price in the UK?  I see that Amazon has free shipping which is key.  Also, what is freeview?

As for the kitchen stuff, we really want to bring the new gadgets we have since they are wedding gifts.  I'm hoping a converter and seldom use will hopefully see us through.

- Daniel
Logged
Anonymiss
Guru
*****

Reputation: 0
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Location: London
Posts: 1094



« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2011, 12:26:53 AM »

Www.freeview.co.uk

In the UK you pay for a TV licence which gives you access to the 5 main channels. It costs about £12/month. Buying a freeview box gives another 20 or more channels. Other places to look for TVs are Curry's and John Lewis.

I am going to agree with the other posters. Leave your kitchen appliances behind. You will soon tire of dragging out the bulky converter which will take up valuable counter space. 

Logged
camoscato
Swami
*****
United Kingdom

Reputation: 44
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Location: Biggleswade
Posts: 2401



WWW
« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2011, 09:27:53 AM »

Thanks for the updates, they are helpful.  I can see what you say about a TV.  Do either of you have any recommendations of where to buy a good flat screen at a reasonable price in the UK?  I see that Amazon has free shipping which is key.  Also, what is freeview?

Freeview is like basic cable in the US, only it's free and it comes via over the air antenna.  Some TVs have a Freeview capability built into them, and for ones that don't you'd need to buy a Freeview box (there are tons available, and the price is generally around £30, give or take).

When we first came over we had Sky (satellite TV), which was fine but included a lot of crap channels we never watched and was somewhat expensive (about £45/month when we included sports).  Eventually we realized how little we watched Sky and how many of the channels we did watch were on Freeview, so we switched and have been very happy with it.

As for where to buy, Amazon is good.  I'd also suggest Comet and Curry's.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2011, 09:29:31 AM by camoscato » Logged

There is no such thing as a video emergency.
My Demo Reel
Sara Smile
Guru
*****

Reputation: 19
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Location: Back and Forth
Posts: 1635




« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2011, 10:20:24 AM »

As for the kitchen stuff, we really want to bring the new gadgets we have since they are wedding gifts.  I'm hoping a converter and seldom use will hopefully see us through.

You need to consider that you are REALLY unlikely to have space to either put loads of gadgets out or store them.
Logged
dvpetta
Newcomer
*

Reputation: 0
Offline Offline

Posts: 16



« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2011, 04:29:20 AM »

Thanks for the updates everyone.

Does anyone get Freeview and then add on sports?  I'm a big sports fan and the wife loves soccer (or should I call it football now?).  Does anyone get Freeview with an add on of sports? 

Looks like some TVs come with the Freeview converter installed so would this mean that we would be able to turn it on and get channels with this or would the flat need somekind of antenna connection?

As for gadgets, we don't really have much and I think we're scaling it down after hearing your comments.

Daniel
Logged
camoscato
Swami
*****
United Kingdom

Reputation: 44
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Location: Biggleswade
Posts: 2401



WWW
« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2011, 08:55:02 AM »

Does anyone get Freeview and then add on sports?  I'm a big sports fan and the wife loves soccer (or should I call it football now?).  Does anyone get Freeview with an add on of sports? 


You can use Top Up TV to add sports to Freeview: http://www.topuptv.com/

I don't know anyone who does this, but if you Google it you'll probably find some people who can give you an idea of how it works and if it's worth it.  Keep in mind that even if you get Sky Sports you won't get many US sports with it.  The ESPN feed shows more American sports, but I didn't want to buy another box and pay £10/month for it.

I'm a big NFL fan, and I've found it easier to watch games on the internet and hook the computer up to the TV.  And yes you should call soccer "football", and football is "American football" or sometimes "gridiron football".  Smiley

Looks like some TVs come with the Freeview converter installed so would this mean that we would be able to turn it on and get channels with this or would the flat need somekind of antenna connection?


You probably still need an antenna.  Our TV has a Freeview tuner built in, but doesn't show anything without an antenna attached.  Every house I've lived in in the UK (4 of them) had an antenna on the roof, so hopefully your place will, too and you can just hook up a cable from a socket in the wall to the TV.
Logged

There is no such thing as a video emergency.
My Demo Reel
UncleTalon
Neophyte
**

Reputation: 2
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Location: Docklands, London
Posts: 35



WWW
« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2011, 12:14:48 PM »

Hmm it's quite easy to check ... look at the appliance (or plug), if it says 120v it won't work .. in fact, the capacitors will explode.  If it says 120-240 (or 220), you'll be fine.

I really wouldn't mess around with large scale convertors, you'll on;y have problems with the amount of ampage you're drawing.

If the device is a low voltage device that needs a convertor, it may be best finding a convertor with the same voltage and ampage in the UK.

USB devices work regardless of location.
Logged

£$%^$%^ NO CARRIER
"Bother" said Pooh as his modem went bang!
Jack Graham
Neophyte
**

Reputation: 2
Offline Offline

Posts: 29



« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2011, 11:33:49 PM »


The UK is currently in a transition phase on terrestrial TV from anologue to digital. TV is regionalised  and the digital channels(Freeview) are currently being run in parallel with the analogue 5 basic chanels. Over the course of the next couple of years region by region the analogue transmitters will be turned off.   After that date if you don't have a Freeview box or a tv with built in Freeview or don't subscribe to Sky or Virgin,  you won't get any channels at all,  there is another problem however. The legacy analogue regional TV system is based on each region using a different part of the frequency spectrum,  this allows Tyne Tees for example to  broadcast local news and programmes to the North East, whilst allowing adjacent Yorkshire to do the same with local programming in its area, to this effect each region uses one of three   frequency specific  aerials. Allthough all these different aerials will get some of the Freeview channels, none will get them all. So if you move into a house thats not had Freeview before,  then you will probably need to change the aerial  to a wideband type  to get all the Freeview channels, otherwise you will get some, and the rest will pixalate, freeze and generally be a pain.

There are two other options, cable and satellite. Sky is the satellite broadcaster in the UK and provides the platform for most of the other satellite  subscription channels. There are numerous packages but generally if you want the standard entertainment channels, lifestyle, discovery, childrens etc it is about £20 per month, the sports channels and the movies are both classed as seperate premium subscriptions with one of them taking the cost upto about £35, and both taking it upto about £50 per month.  All  of the large urban centres and most smaller towns are fully cabled with optical fibre and offer a service run by Virgin Media. Most of the channels are the same as you will find on the Sky system, but because most of them are licensed off Sky their packages are normally slightly higher than Sky, and don't usually offer as many channels in total, because of the bandwidth limitations of the optical fibre network infrastructure, both systems of course have all the Freeview channesl as well. Both Virgin Media and Sky usually give you the Digital HD Box free of charge,   and both normally fit the system free of charge or for a small nominal charge.
 .
Logged
DrSuperL99
Jedi
*****
United Kingdom

Reputation: 36
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Location: Fife, Scotland
Posts: 3283




« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2011, 11:45:07 PM »

There are also 2 different types of Freesat, which is like Freeview but using a satellite transmitter instead of a digital aerial. 'Freesat' is the BBC/ITV version and Sky Freesat is, of course, from Sky. Both require a satellite dish, but some new tellies are able to decode the BBC one directly, whereas the Sky one you need a Sky box and a decoder card for which you pay a one time price (£25 for the card if you already have the equipment, or £175 for installation). That's what we have because our town has been a Freeview blackspot and no cable option.
Logged

Arrived as student 9/2003; Renewed student visa 9/2006; Applied for HSMP approval 1/2008; HSMP approved 3/2008; Tier 1 General FLR received 4/2008; FLR(M) Unmarried partner approved (in-person) 27/8/2009; ILR granted at in-person PEO appointment 1/8/2011; Applied for citizenship at Edinburgh NCS 31/10/2011; Citizenship approval received 4/2/2012
FINALLY A CITIZEN! 29/2/2012
dvpetta
Newcomer
*

Reputation: 0
Offline Offline

Posts: 16



« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2011, 02:52:37 AM »

You can use Top Up TV to add sports to Freeview: http://www.topuptv.com/
I'm a big NFL fan, and I've found it easier to watch games on the internet and hook the computer up to the TV.  And yes you should call soccer "football", and football is "American football" or sometimes "gridiron football".  Smiley


Thanks Camoscato but you have to tell me how I can watch NFL games online. I'm a huge fan and really want to be able to watch 49er games while I'm there.  Outside of watching Sunday Night Football or Monday Night football online, is there a way to get a season pass and watch games?
Logged
camoscato
Swami
*****
United Kingdom

Reputation: 44
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Location: Biggleswade
Posts: 2401



WWW
« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2011, 07:55:13 AM »

Thanks Camoscato but you have to tell me how I can watch NFL games online. I'm a huge fan and really want to be able to watch 49er games while I'm there.  Outside of watching Sunday Night Football or Monday Night football online, is there a way to get a season pass and watch games?

There is: https://gamepass.nfl.com/nflgp/secure/registerform

The only down side is if a game is on Sky in the UK it will be blacked out on NFL.com.  You can get around this by running something like Hotspot Shield (it hides your IP address so websites don't know where you are connecting from).  Sky usually only broadcasts a couple of games each weekend, so you won't run into this problem too often if you just want to watch 49ers games.

There are other posts on here about watching live TV online.  If you do a search of the media forum, I think they're in there.
Logged

There is no such thing as a video emergency.
My Demo Reel
Pages: [1]   Go Up
Print
Jump to:  



  Sponsored Ads