Best smart decoders for old TVs

Decoder smart

With the transition to the new digital terrestrial, many televisions sold before 2010 are no longer able to receive traditional television channels. This incompatibility is caused by the transition to new transmission standards (DVB-T with H.264, DVB-T2 with H.264 and DVB-T2 with HEVC) difficult to find on old TVs or on old decoders used during the first switch off, where we have gone from analogue signals to digital terrestrial signals.

In addition to the TV channels more and more people want to access smart features present on virtually any modern TV: even on old televisions it is therefore possible to see some YouTube videos, access Netflix or open Amazon Prime Video, but only if we integrate the smart component with the right decoder.

If we have an old CRT or flat TV still in perfect working order and we don’t want to throw it in the trash in the following guide we will show you the best smart decoders for old TVs, so you can see all the channels of the new digital terrestrial and enjoy some nice streaming videos without having to bother your computer or laptop.

READ ALSO -> Check if your TV is DVB-T2 ready, what it is and how to update

Telesystem UP T2 4K

One of the best smart decoders we can buy is the Telesystem UP T2 4K, available on Amazon for € 109.


This smart decoder supports all the new digital terrestrial protocols (DVB-T / T2 HEVC and H.264) and provides Android TV as an operating system, so that we can install the apps that we are used to using on Android phones or tablets on top of it. Once connected to the internet you can then also see YouTube videos and Netflix streaming content or similar services even on very old TVs.

The decoder has an HDMI port for the most recent televisions and an AV output with 3.5mm Jack: a specific Jack-SCART cable (available in the package) can be connected to the latter, so that the decoder can also be used with old TVs without an HDMI port.

EDISION PICCO T265 + decoder

Another smart decoder that we can see for our old TV is the EDISION PICCO T265 +, which can be purchased on Amazon for € 27.


By focusing on this decoder we will have in our hands a device that is simple and quick to configure, with support for all the protocols of the new digital terrestrial (DVB-T2 with HEVC). To this decoder we can both connect an external USB hard drive to see the movies saved on the PC and connect a dedicated Wi-Fi antenna (sold separately for € 9), with which it is possible to update the device firmware and access the smart component. of the decoder, so you can see the video su YouTube and view the weather in the city we live in.

Smart features are limited compared to the Telesystem model seen in the previous chapter, but considering the speed of channel search and support for YouTube videos, this decoder is the ideal choice for relatives not used to technology but who want to try to use YouTube to see some funny videos.

The decoder has, in the back, both an HDMI output and the classic SCART output, so you can connect to it televisions with HDMI, plasma televisions and cathode ray tube televisions.


Another smart decoder model that we can take into consideration for old TVs is the GT MEDIA GTT-2 4K, on ​​sale on Amazon for 88 €.

Decoder GT

This small decoder is compatible with the new DVB-T2 HEVC digital terrestrial digital and has an interface very similar to that found on Android phones: once connected to the Wi-Fi network in the house the operating system allows you to access all Android apps, thus allowing you to stream videos on YouTube, videos from Netflix and other apps in the integrated store.

At the rear of the decoder we find the HDMI output for the latest TVs and an AV Combo output, to which the Jack-SCART cable is connected: with the latter, even older TVs will be able to access the Android interface and enjoy the features smart.

Alternartive to the traditional decoder

If we don’t want to buy a traditional decoder and keeping your old TV anyway may be a good idea to go for a compact device like the Fire TV Stick Lite, available on Amazon for € 29.

Fire TV

By connecting the Fire TV to the HDMI port of the TV and starting the interface we will have access to the RaiPlay and Mediaset Infinity app, that is the main apps that broadcast live streaming the same channels as digital terrestrial. Using this system we will obviously have to tinker more to find the channel (compared to the simple numeric keys of traditional remote controls), but the viewing quality is equal or even superior to the channels transmitted via antenna and it may be worthwhile in areas where the digital terrestrial signal is poor.

Obviously with the Fire TV Stick we will also have access to the apps of Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, DAZN and other famous streaming services, as also seen in ours guide dedicated to the Fire TV.

If the TV we own does not have an HDMI port, we can always buy an HDMI-SCART adapter (11 €), so as to bring the signal of the Fire TV Stick even on very old TVs.


Although between TV bonuses and state incentives, it is worth buying a new Smart TV as soon as possible, we cannot command the heart and the wallet: if an old flat TV (plasma or early LCDs) or a CRT TV still work fine, we can connect one of the decoder smart present at the top, so as to immediately support the new digital terrestrial channels and also enjoy some videos on YouTube or the contents of the other streaming apps supported by the operating systems (in many cases based on Android and Android TV).

As a valid alternative to decoders we do not underestimate the potential of the Fire TV Stick Lite (cheap and simple) and del Chromecast con Google TV, another valid alternative to see i TV channels even without antenna.


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