Avtex is a name known to many who own a caravan or motorhome in the UK.
Their mobile leisure specific TV’s feature in many of the show caravans and motorhomes of lots of manufacturers.
When selecting a motorhome or caravan TV there are a few things to consider in addition to those things that you may think of when choosing a TV for your home.
Home setup versus Motorhome setup
In your typical home setup you may have a TV, a freeview box, a satellite receiver possibly a DVD player, although these are less common than in previous years. Each of these devices run off 240v mains electricity and each will draw a portion of power when being used as well as when on standby.
Mains AC / 24 volts / 12v
When your’e in a motorhome this is the first problem to overcome, power provision. Although you could, if you wanted to, run all these devices in your motorhome if you were connected to a mains hook up. For example if you were on a campsite. It means though you wouldn’t be able to use these devices when not connected to the mains, for example if you’d stopped for a few hours at a beauty spot or were wild camping.
This is the first difference that the Avtex L217DRS has over your domestic television you can enjoy the TV whilst out and about as it operates on 12V, 24V or 240V power. With dedicated circuitry designed to withstand the fluctuations of DC power and the vibrations of travel.
Low power consumption
When using the TV in my motorhome it shows it’s drawing around 1.3 Amps on 12V which is a relatively low draw on your leisure battery and therefore should last longer.
HD satellite decoder built in
The Avtex L217DRS has an integrated DVB-S2 HD satellite decoder, eliminating the need for a set-top box to get free to air satellite. I have it connected to a Snipe automatic roof mounted satellite dish. You connect your satellite dish / antenna directly to the SAT IN port on the TV. This means there’s no need for a separate set top box resulting in fewer wires and reduced battery use.
Freeview HD built in
You can Get access to the full range of digital Freeview channels via a digital antenna, including BBC One HD, BBC Two HD, ITV HD and Channel 4HD. Because I have the satellite I don’t have an external aerial so I tend not to use this feature.
Record and pause live TV
A feature you may find useful, for example if you want to set a timer to record your favourite programme or if you want to pause live TV while you rush outside to stop your awning blowing away! Just connect a USB stick and you can make the most of the built-in pause and record to USB functions.
Built in DVD and CD player.
There is an integrated DVD player built into the side of the TV that will also play audio CD’s (does anyone still use them?). This is useful if for example you’re in a position where your satellite or TV signal is blocked or unavailable preventing you watching live TV.
The screen has a kind of matt finish, which reduces glare and reflection in the screen providing better picture viewing. The bezel around the side is really slim meaning the TV screen fills most of the TV frontal view.
2x USB port
2x HDMI port
1x Satellite connection
1x Digital aerial coaxial connection
1x Headphone socket
1x Composite input
Included in the box:
1x Avtex L218DRS TV/DVD
1x 12V/24V DC power cable
1x Mains AC power cable
I’m really pleased with this TV, everything is built into one device, perfect for the motorhome. I usually have a quick watch of the TV in the morning to catch up on the news and of an evening during down time. The picture is clear. There are alternative manufacturers models available that are lower priced and may deliver a similar quality, that you may consider. However as I haven’t used them then I can’t comment in terms of a comparison.
The price of Avtex TV’s are quite expensive in comparison to other brands but I’m pleased with the TV and the after sales service of the company.
When things go wrong
All companies can and do sing the praises of their product, but what about the company themselves? Especially if things go wrong. Well mine did! So it’s important to consider things such as warranty and customer service
I actually wrote this as a review on amazon for this product. “Now if you are unfortunate for your purchase to malfunction we all know about our consumer rights and the contract being with the seller and the potential hassle of being directed through manufactuers …blah blah blah. If you’re like me, I ususally prefer to deal with the seller than the manufacturer when things go wrong, however with Avtex it’s an exception you’ll be happy to make.
In terms of the Avtex warranty I would not hesitate to say the warranty experience is the best of any electronic consumer product I have ever owned (believe me that’s a lot). I was unfortunate for my TV to malfunction, I telephoned Avtex on Monday morning at 09:35hrs and explained the situation, they said they would courier the item back, repair or replace and return it by courier. On the same morning at 11:20hrs there was a knock at the door with the TNT driver waiting to collect my TV…. how impressive is that! A quick turnaround by anyones standards and by Wednesday the TV was on its way back. Oh and the warranty is for a whole 3 years not the usual 12 months!”