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TV tuner / PVR cards

 
 
Sticky
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Posts: n/a
 
      06-15-2005
xray spex wrote:

>>>>>>I'd like to add simple PVR functionality to a PC i.e. record TV
>>>>>>programs
>>>>>>to
>>>>>>hard disk for later viewing and timeshift programs while I'm watching
>>>>>>them.
>>>>>>There are a lot of cards around which provide this functionality, does
>>>>>>anybody have a favourite they'd recommend from personal experience ?


snip

>
> Obviously I will do my own research, my original post was an attempt to find
> a starting point and has been successful from that perspective. I disagree
> with your comments about the advice that's handed out on nz.comp, with a
> couple of notable exceptions I find the majority of it to be fairly good and
> no doubt will continue to do so. The thoughts, opinions and personal
> experiences of a few people on nz.comp are worth many hours of Googling and
> MSN Searching. The cool thing with IT is that there's very rarely one single
> way to skin the proverbial cat, the diverse range of solutions and gadgetry
> can add complexity to the evaluation process but in return it enables
> customisation and selection of features which aren't really available when
> purchasing other types of items. Synopsis: diversity of opinion and
> experiences is a very good thing IMHO and I'll continue to use nz.comp as a
> source for both.


I have trialled several PVR cards, only one with hardware encoding.
Have a look at www.videohelp.com - they have comparision charts which
are interesting.

The hardware card I tried was total crap (PixelView PlayTV@P7200). In
my opinion there are no good *low cost* hardware encoders - expect to
pay 1000 bucks or so for a good one. The cheaper ones all use a small
range of encoder chips - none of which are much good.

Software encoders are excellent and capable of excellent quality, on a
reasonably fast CPU ( say 2 - 3GHz).

I've had best success with the Compro cards. Currently it's a
VideoMate TV Gold II PCI TV Card. Using the PVR2 software that comes
with it you cannot distinguish the picture quaility between real and
recorded. I have used InterVideo WinDVR (V3.0) also and have found it
to be very good. The software encoding can be setup to output any
video data quality you want - format, data rate, audio bit rate, GOP,
etc can all be altered at will.

The Compro cards have excellent tuners and give perfect picture. I'm
on to my second one and have not had any serious problems, AND Compro
are very helpful, and responsive and have remained so over the years.
I can't say that for too many other like companies.

http://www.bdt.co.nz/computer/group....54&brandid=132

Be careful - make sure you buy one with STEREO sound, some of the
cheaper ones only have mono.

--
Jim
 
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Sticky
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      06-15-2005
nospam wrote:

> "big cat" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>
>>On Thu, 09 Jun 2005 07:08:19 GMT, "nospam" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>
>>
>>>"xray spex" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
>>>news:wtzpe.5994$(E-Mail Removed)...
>>>
>>>>I'd like to add simple PVR functionality to a PC i.e. record TV programs
>>>>to hard disk for later viewing and timeshift programs while I'm watching
>>>>them. There are a lot of cards around which provide this functionality,
>>>>does anybody have a favourite they'd recommend from personal experience
>>>>?
>>>>
>>>>thanks
>>>
>>>Honestly, get a Hauppauge PVR150. It's not the cheapest card available in
>>>New Zealand, but at about $230 it'll provide you much more enjoyment than
>>>all the cheaper cards available. This Hauppauge card is very mainstream,
>>>and
>>>has very good support from the application development community. Buying a
>>>PixelView or other cheap no brand capture device will leave you
>>>continually
>>>hunting for software that works with your device, and you'll be
>>>disappointed
>>>with the quality of support your device gets from application developers.
>>>
>>>The PVR150 has an onboard MPEG2 encoder mean you'll only consume about 2%
>>>CPU while recording. It works with common PVR applications including
>>>Windows
>>>Media Center Edition, MythTV, SageTV, GB-PVR, BeyondTV etc.
>>>
>>>Some could say I'm biased, as I'm the developer of a PVR app called GB-PVR
>>>(see www.gbpvr.com). Like most PVR applications, its designed for
>>>Hauppauge
>>>PVR150/250/350/500. Even though it does generally work with many of the
>>>clone devices that use the same reference design, if these users of
>>>encounter problems with the non-mainstream devices, they're pretty much
>>>have
>>>to solve the problem themselves.
>>>
>>>Think very carefully before buying any of these cheaper devices, and know
>>>what you getting yourself into...
>>>
>>>Good luck.
>>>
>>>

>>
>>
>>
>>May be you should read this review before you spout off about cheap cards
>>
>>http://www.digit-life.com/articles2/prolink-p7000/
>>
>>They have also brought at a 7200 model.
>>

>
>
> I actually have one of these cards, and about 25 other capture devices. I
> wouldnt waste my money on this device, and I certainly wouldnt recommend any
> one else does.
>
> Its based on the same Conexant reference design as the Hauppauge PVR250, so
> in theory should be quite capable of capturing decent MPEG2 files. In
> practice, I found the drivers more flakey than the Hauppauge ones, and the
> card does not work with many PVR applications, so will provide you very
> limited option for what software you can run. Also the software that came
> with this device is very average, as is the case with most capture device
> (incl hauppauge), so you'll instantly be looking for some better software.
>
>

I agree totally. Don't buy a 7200. The comments about the h/w encoding
are spot on. There is no such thing as a good quality low cost
hardware encoder. Low cost and good quality do not go hand in hand.
(unfortunately)

The real benfit of the Compro card is the software - it's excellent
and it has no bugs that I've found. All other cards have real shitty
buggy software.

I must have a close look at GB-PVR. First looks are impressive.

What's MS Net runtime - not another DLL to load up?

--
Jim
 
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JohnO
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      06-16-2005
MS DotNet runtime. You need it to run any code that has been written
with the DotNet framework. It is *many* dlls. From memory it was about
a 20meg download.

GB-PVR is a great piece of NZ developed software - I love it.

 
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Craig Shore
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Posts: n/a
 
      06-20-2005
On Wed, 15 Jun 2005 18:44:53 +1200, Sticky <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:


>I've had best success with the Compro cards. Currently it's a
>VideoMate TV Gold II PCI TV Card. Using the PVR2 software that comes
>with it you cannot distinguish the picture quaility between real and
>recorded. I have used InterVideo WinDVR (V3.0) also and have found it
>to be very good. The software encoding can be setup to output any
>video data quality you want - format, data rate, audio bit rate, GOP,
>etc can all be altered at will.
>
>The Compro cards have excellent tuners and give perfect picture. I'm
>on to my second one and have not had any serious problems, AND Compro
>are very helpful, and responsive and have remained so over the years.
>I can't say that for too many other like companies.
>
>http://www.bdt.co.nz/computer/group....54&brandid=132
>
>Be careful - make sure you buy one with STEREO sound, some of the
>cheaper ones only have mono.


I agree with you about the Compro picture being good, but it's sound is absolute
****. I gave up trying to get it to go properley in the end and now hook the
VCR audio outputs to the computers line in to record the sound.

 
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