Freesat is a digital satellite television system that is able to receive free to air satellite TV channels.
But, not all free to air TV channels are available by the Freesat Electronic Programme Guide (EPG). For example, Sky News is a free to air channel, but is not available on the actual Freesat EPG channel list.
Channels have to pay to be included on the Freesat EPG, but apparently with thanks to various rules and laws, all receivers have to have the ability to receive ALL free to air channels.
This mean you can actually expand the number of channels from the “official” 160 or so channel to the over 200 channels that are actually being transmitted form the satellites. OK, not all of them are popular channels, with many texting, gaming and “girls on sofa” channels, but there are one or two that can be enjoyable.
Most Freesat receiver have to modes: Freesat and Non Freesat mode.
In Freesat mode the EPG carries the channels that have paid to be on the Freesat EPG.
In Non Freesat mode you will have access to ALL free to air channels.
To access the Non Freesat mode on many Freesat receivers, you simply perform a manual scan from the installation page in the menu system. The receiver will then scan all available free to air channels on the satellite.
When completed, in the Options / Setting menu screen, you will have a new option “Set Top Box Mode” which you can change.
Changing this option changes the EPG from Freesat to Non Freesat mode, and you will now have in effect TWO channel lists, the official Freesat channel list, and then the ALL free top air channels list.
Note that the Freesat channel list starts at channel number 100 and is generally a three digit channel number, whereas the non Freesat mode channel list starts at number 5000, and is a four digit number, easily helping you identify which list you are using!