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Re: Recommendation of a PC HDTV card

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  • Mike Iimura
    Here s my take on HDTV cards and utilities. You can find more than you would ever want to know in the Home Theater PC forum at avsforum.com I think QAM tuning
    Message 1 of 12 , Aug 1, 2006
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      Here's my take on HDTV cards and utilities. You can find more than
      you would ever want to know in the Home Theater PC forum at
      avsforum.com

      I think QAM tuning is only functional on Fusion, MyHD, EyeTV tuner
      cards.

      The best utility for cutting commercials is HDTVtoMPEG2. It's not a
      conversion utility as the name implies any more, but it's great at
      automatically detecting 4:3 commercials and outputting a TS without
      commercials and with only the stream you want. They're talking about
      changing the name to TSedit, which makes more sense.

      Conversion to DVD format can be done with many different programs.
      The quickest and dirtiest is probably HDTV2DVD. It will take a single
      program and put it in DVD format, ready to burn, but with no menu or
      other features. Nero 6 Ultra and Nero 7 Ultra come with a program
      called NeroVision that will do the conversion for you as well. That
      program allows multiple titles and menus in addition to transcoding to
      DVD format. VideoReDo is also a high quality program that will do a
      good conversion from Transport Stream to Program Stream (.ts or .tp
      to .mpg). Then you can transcode to DivX or H.264 or WMV as you like,
      even at HD resolution.

      I have two MyHD cards and love them. They have the added benefit of
      an on-board HD decoder, so your video card does not affect the quality
      of the output. However, you have to use their software, not MCE or
      WatchHDTV, or others that work with software decoding cards.

      Good Luck,

      - Mike

      --- In HDTV-in-SFbay@yahoogroups.com, Larry Kenney <Larry@...> wrote:
      >
      > In reply to "ikpunjabi2k" (what an email address!!) and Chris Kast...
      >
      > The MyHD tuner works well with XP and also has a QAM input. I
      > haven't tried the QAM, since I don't have cable, but the ATSC
      > input works great.
      >
      > I don't know how you'd convert the output for use on a DVD
      > though. The files are saved in .ts format for playback on the
      > computer using the MyHD card software. That format won't work on
      > a DVD player.
      >
      > Larry
      > SF
      >
    • Larry Kenney
      ... Thanks for the information, Mike. I found all three programs by searching with Google... and they re all free. Can t beat that! I ll give them a try.
      Message 2 of 12 , Aug 1, 2006
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        Mike Iimura wrote:

        > The best utility for cutting commercials is HDTVtoMPEG2.
        >
        > Conversion to DVD format can be done with many different programs.
        > The quickest and dirtiest is probably HDTV2DVD. It will take a single
        > program and put it in DVD format, ready to burn, but with no menu or
        > other features. Nero 6 Ultra and Nero 7 Ultra come with a program
        > called NeroVision that will do the conversion for you as well.

        Thanks for the information, Mike. I found all three programs by
        searching with Google... and they're all free. Can't beat that!
        I'll give them a try.

        Larry
      • Mike
        Was surprised to see noone suggested the ATI HDTV card. I do realize the software isn t the best stuff in the world...but the card does work with Media Center
        Message 3 of 12 , Aug 2, 2006
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          Was surprised to see noone suggested the ATI HDTV card. I do realize
          the software isn't the best stuff in the world...but the card does
          work with Media Center if that is something you're heading for.

          I use the card with Media Center and my OTA signal and it works great.
          Though, the downside is you do get the Microsoft .dvrms format and
          have to convert that to something usable for other software apps if
          you wish to use them.

          Are there upsides to going with another solution that I'm missing here?

          -Mike
        • Mike Iimura
          To me, these are the big issues when selecting a PC HDTV solution: QAM (cable vs. OTA only) MCE (software choice) DRM (recording format and copy protection) If
          Message 4 of 12 , Aug 3, 2006
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            To me, these are the big issues when selecting a PC HDTV solution:
            QAM (cable vs. OTA only)
            MCE (software choice)
            DRM (recording format and copy protection)

            If you don't need QAM and you do like Windows Media Center Edition
            (MCE) or SageTV, then you have a lot of choices - ATI, Avermedia,
            Divico, etc. These are all software (BDA) based cards. If you need
            QAM tuning then you're stuck with something like MyHD or Fusion and
            you can't use MCE.

            I personally find added value in the MyHD as a no-nonsense, high
            performance solution that has absolutely no DRM. I routinely cut
            commercials and convert to DVD with free or low cost utilities. It
            also comes with a remote and behaves very much like a set-top box.
            Computer requirements are also very low. Basically if you can play a
            DVD on the computer, it can probably work with MyHD. That's really
            dumbed down, but you get the idea. MyHD also works very well on a
            network. I don't think you can record to a server on MCE. That's a
            showstopper for me with the big HDTV storage requirements.

            - Mike

            --- In HDTV-in-SFbay@yahoogroups.com, "Mike" <rat1head@...> wrote:
            >
            > Was surprised to see noone suggested the ATI HDTV card. I do
            > realize the software isn't the best stuff in the world...but the
            > card does work with Media Center if that is something you're
            > heading for.
            >
            > I use the card with Media Center and my OTA signal and it works
            > great. Though, the downside is you do get the Microsoft .dvrms
            > format and have to convert that to something usable for other
            > software apps if you wish to use them.
            >
            > Are there upsides to going with another solution that I'm missing
            > here?
            >
            > -Mike
            >
          • Craig Flockhart
            The card works great, just save your tears and don t bother with ATI Multimedia Center.. it s one of the buggiest pieces of software I ve ever encountered. The
            Message 5 of 12 , Aug 5, 2006
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              The card works great, just save your tears and don't bother with ATI
              Multimedia Center.. it's one of the buggiest pieces of software I've
              ever encountered. The engineers won't be putting that on their resume
              once they get canned by AMD.
              After a suggestion by a previous poster, I tried WatchHDTV..
              barebones, but solid and actually displays 16:9 correctly on my 16:10
              monitor. Records and time shifts flawlessly. The mysterious
              transmission dropouts have stopped too.
              The ATI card is pretty cheap, in acknowledgment of the hair pulling
              you're likely to have if you use ATI MMC.

              Craig


              --- In HDTV-in-SFbay@yahoogroups.com, "Mike" <rat1head@...> wrote:
              >
              > Was surprised to see noone suggested the ATI HDTV card. I do realize
              > the software isn't the best stuff in the world...but the card does
              > work with Media Center if that is something you're heading for.
              >
              > I use the card with Media Center and my OTA signal and it works great.
              > Though, the downside is you do get the Microsoft .dvrms format and
              > have to convert that to something usable for other software apps if
              > you wish to use them.
              >
              > Are there upsides to going with another solution that I'm missing here?
              >
              > -Mike
              >
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