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Thread: Need to build a Media Centre PC to record HiDef

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    zed
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    Need to build a Media Centre PC to record HiDef

    Hi there,

    I need to build a media centre PC to record Hi Def programmes from my Sky HD box as the disk on that is way too small! Any advice on whether this is possible and what kind of kit I would need?

    Thanks.

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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    it's irritating in the extreme - and requires one sky box (plus subscription) per concurrent record (e.g. 2 sky boxes for record-and-watch-other-channel)

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    Don't really need to record in real time - its mainly to free up disk space on the Sky HD box, so just need the ability to copy stuff over.

    So need a card that will take in component video or HDMI presumeably? Are there any?
    Last edited by MD; 06-02-2007 at 08:09 AM.

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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zed View Post
    So need a card that will take in component video or HDMI presumeably? Are there any?
    sure. but you'd need an HDCP scrubber to use HDMI, and they're tricky to locate

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    Quote Originally Posted by directhex View Post
    sure. but you'd need an HDCP scrubber to use HDMI, and they're tricky to locate
    Is that hardware or software? Are there any component input cards to avoid this?

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    HDCP removal boxes can be bought from many places, although expect to pay roughly £250 for one....

    Then you need to get the signal into your PC....

    You will need a RAID disk sub-system to maintain the datarates you need (~£1000) and an extremly high-spec PC.....plus a HD capture card....

    You are looking at some serious outlay.
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    is there no way to pull the HDD out of the SKY box and copy files over that way?
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    Quote Originally Posted by shaithis View Post
    HDCP removal boxes can be bought from many places, although expect to pay roughly £250 for one....

    Then you need to get the signal into your PC....

    You will need a RAID disk sub-system to maintain the datarates you need (~£1000) and an extremly high-spec PC.....plus a HD capture card....

    You are looking at some serious outlay.
    Since the sky box does not use a RAID disk system, why would that be needed? Do you know of any HD capture cards? If I can use component, HDCP removal will not be necessary.

    Quote Originally Posted by MadduckUK View Post
    is there no way to pull the HDD out of the SKY box and copy files over that way?
    Not practical for regular use - also want to avoid opening the HD box as its under warranty.
    Last edited by MD; 06-02-2007 at 08:09 AM.

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    The Sky boxes record the raw satellite feed, so it HAS to be played back through the box with your card in or the data cannot be decrypted into the AV stream you are after.

    HD AV has such a huge throughput that the few capture cards that will handle it need massive disk performance to be able to write it as fast as it is receiving it.

    You can buy a component capture card for ~£1200 last time I checked, I believe someone also has a HDMI card being readied but will almost certainly get its keys revoked as soon as the content providers get their mits on one.

    The problem then is, that uncompressed 1080p is roughly 400GB/hour. Encoding to MPEG4 or VC-1 will take a fair amount of time also.

    AFAIK, there aren't any PCI sat cards that are Sky compatible, hence you have to go through all this
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    Quote Originally Posted by shaithis View Post
    The Sky boxes record the raw satellite feed, so it HAS to be played back through the box with your card in or the data cannot be decrypted into the AV stream you are after.
    (
    No problems with playing back via the Sky HD box - just want to have additional storage on a media centre PC. Surely there must be a cheaper than £1200 component capture card???

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    You have 2 options:

    1. Standard def - cheap as chips.

    2. High def - extraordinarily expensive.


    With the HD option you are on the crest of the technology wave. Even Sky themselves are having issues handling HD material due to the bandwidth and throughput it requires.

    Don't forget, even that £1200 component capture card is HALF the cost as you need to spend the same again on a raid system that can handle the 400GB/hour without hiccuping.
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    How about this HDMI capture card:

    http://www.onevideo.co.uk/product_in...roducts_id=496

    Only £150

    Not sure about how it would handle HDCP or if HDCP is even implemented at the moment though
    Last edited by MD; 06-02-2007 at 08:10 AM.

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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zed View Post
    Not sure about how it would handle HDCP or if HDCP is even implemented at the moment though
    it wouldn't handle HDCP, and yes, sky makes heavy use of it

    you'd need an HDCP scubber (expensive and hard to track down), and pray to $deity that the HDCP keys on it aren't recoked, turning it into an expensive paperweight

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    Quote Originally Posted by zed View Post
    Hi there,

    I need to build a media centre PC to record Hi Def programmes from my Sky HD box as the disk on that is way too small! Any advice on whether this is possible and what kind of kit I would need?

    Thanks.
    If the only reason you're doing this is too get more recording space then you need to read this thread.

    Upgraded to 1 Terabyte without removing warranty sticker

    Seems like a cheaper (£350) & easier route to me.

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    I see someone has posted a onevideo link, I looked into this a while back as I had been offered an Osprey-230 card, but I have heard of other people having used MyHD cards, but I dont know if they were using Sky for this as the person I know has a very big dish and can get quite a few other sats on it, and IIRC might have been doing this before SkyHD was here in the UK, (they live in Spain).

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    Do you want to keep the recordings in HD, or are you happy to have them stored in SD? I know on the Sky+ box there is a bulk copy option, may be on SkyHD too, you can bulk copy the recordings to a consumer DVD recorder or HDD/DVD recorder. I believe that the majority of recordings can be copied ok, but some items do have copy protection.

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