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Thread: TV Tuner + Vid cap card

  1. #1
    mush-mushroom b0redom's Avatar
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    TV Tuner + Vid cap card

    Hi,
    Does this card exist? I'm after something that'll allow me to do PVR for freeview. I've also got a really old vid camera with some movie stuff from when I went travelling a couple of years back, that I'd like to be able to capture.

    Alternativly, what's the best freeview PVR card? Should I avoid USB and stick with PCI? Will USB ones work in the US or whatever when I go travelling?

    Cheers...

    Tom

  2. #2
    root Member DanceswithUnix's Avatar
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    Combined cards do exist (ATI All in Wonder), but they seem like bad value; limit your choice of functionality and make upgrading your video card later on (which given new generations coming out every 6 months seems certain) more expensive.

    Not tried the USB TV devices, I have a cheap Hauppauge freeview only PCI card that replaces my previous analoge only PCI card. Sounds like one of the combined analogue & freeview cards will work for you, that way you can capture your camcorder footage too.

  3. #3
    Does he need a reason? Funkstar's Avatar
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    technically there is no such thing as a Freeview PVR card. All there is are DVB-T tuner cards and DVB-T tuner/decoder cards.

    The ones you get for £30 - £100 are just tuner cards. All they do is tune to the channel* frequency, de-Mux and send the MPEG-2 Transport Stream to the drivers/software. The TS contains all the video, audio, interactive data, etc for all the station on that Mux. It is up to the software recieving this data to do any decoding or recording functions.

    You also get "fully featured" cards that do a lot of the processing on board and will also decode the MPEG-2 streams and send them straight to the video card. These are rare and expensive and a little out dated now (no way to handle HD-TV or MPEG-4).

    Pretty much all the cards will come with software that will let you do PVR functions, however some are better than others. The Nebula DigiTV has very good software, but is quite expensive. I hear the Hauppauge cards are good and the software is decent, and you can pick them up cheaply (they are probably the market leaders as they have been in the tuner business for ever).

    Loads of these cards also have an analogue in connection. usually in the form or a composite in, but S-Video is also used some times. What is quite rare is both an analogue and digital tuner, however you do get them. LifeView have a couple. I have two of their dual tuner PC Card devices at work. Not the best cards, but they do work and the software is a lot more stable than i was when we got them.

    The digital portion won't work in the US as they use ATSC as opposed to DVB-T for their terrestrial digital broadcasts. I guess any analogue tuner would work, they are usually universal NTSC/PAL/SECAM compatible. Same with any composite/S-Video input.

    this looks a pretty good one, does just about everything including FM radio

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Produ...oductID=366984

    not exaclty expensive either.

    *channel as in an old analogue channel, this is what a DVB-T Mux (multiplex) is wrapped up in.

  4. #4
    mush-mushroom b0redom's Avatar
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    Can you give me an example of the combined analogue + freeview cards?

    Cheers...

    Tom

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    Does he need a reason? Funkstar's Avatar
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    erm... i did

  6. #6
    mush-mushroom b0redom's Avatar
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    Yeah, was replying to DanceswithUnix at the same time your replied ;-)

    Thanks...

    Tom

  7. #7
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    I use this....
    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Produ...oductID=196756

    Very good for Freeview and captures well from old camcorder tapes as well.

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