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jchambers28

join:2007-05-12
Alma, AR
Reviews:
·Cox HSI
·AT&T Wireless Br..

[Parts Check] TV tuner

I am looking to get a new TV tuner for Cable card recording

I need something that works. my options are

ATI tv tuner

»www.ebay.com/itm/ATI-TV-WONDER-D···137b6b48

Hapaug

»www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a···15116072

Which one should I go with.


Camelot One
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-21
Greenwood, IN
kudos:2

I would go with the Hauppauge. But that opinion is based on my experience with their internal cards versus internal all-in-wonder cards. I would also consider the Hauppauge still-in-production/supported status. I have been rather upset with ATI, particularly since the AMD merger, when it comes to supporting older devices.



redxii
Premium,Mod
join:2001-02-26
Sherwood, MI
reply to jchambers28

Hauppauge

If your provider requires any kind of box to receive any channels then you'll need the cablecard.. if not, according to missingremote.com it can still be used without it and get whatever you would get directly plugging a cable into a TV.
--
Moe, I need your advice… See I've got this friend named Joey Joe-Joe... Junior... Shabadoo..



jchambers28

join:2007-05-12
Alma, AR

I am wanting to use them with a cable card. I want it to be as easy setup as possible.



redxii
Premium,Mod
join:2001-02-26
Sherwood, MI

Well you definitely don't want to get the one from eBay, other than it doesn't appear to support cablecard. You'll get a warranty and support from Hauppauge.
--
Moe, I need your advice… See I've got this friend named Joey Joe-Joe... Junior... Shabadoo..



Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1
reply to jchambers28

The ATI TV Wonder Digital Cable tuner pictured in your link looks like the first commercially available CableCard model provided by ATI:

»www.engadget.com/2007/01/11/atis···ands-on/

So I don’t doubt that it is CableCard capable but its an older model and single stream. In other words you would only receive one channel (to watch or record) at a time. If you wanted multiple channels for background recording and the like you would need another ATI TV Wonder Digital Cable tuner and another CableCard rental (up to four). Or you would need a newer model with M-Card rental

With the Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650 model you’ll receive two streams with an M-Card CableCard rental. So for example, you’ll be able to record one show in the background and watch another show on a different channel.

I have the Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650 but I have yet to set it up. I think it’s a far better choice given the alternative. Ceton (quad tuner) or Silicondust (tri tuner) would be my ideal choice but the Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650 is the most cost effective new CableCard tuner M-Card capable model (AKA cheapest, as far as I know).



wcda

join:2001-12-06
Macon, GA
reply to jchambers28

I am currently using 2 of the ATI TV Wonder external Digital Cable tuners and one of the internal Ceton 4 cable card tuner. giving me a total of 6 tuners on this machine. If I was just starting again I would go with the Ceton tuners or the Silicon Dust tuners as my first choice.



Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1

Great example,…..

If you had a single CableCard tuner capable of 6 streams and only one CableCard rental was required you would pay the monthly rental fee for the single CableCard. In my case the rental fee is one dollar and fifty cents (~$1.50).

I believe Ceton has a six tuner version or was working on one. Silicondust has a six tuner version (the HDHomeRun Prime 6CC) but it uses two CableCards which would cost 2x the rental fee (for a total of ~$3.00 per month in my case).

Six ATI TV Wonder Digital Cable tuner with 6 CableCard rental would be 6x the rental fee (for a total of ~$9 per month in my case).

Same functionality with very different monthly rates given the configuration.

BTW, I was under the impression that only 4 of a kind tuner configurations were supported in Media Center. Six tuner configurations are presumably attained by OEMS using a special Microsoft provided expansion pack (OEMS only) or a hack (DIY).



wcda

join:2001-12-06
Macon, GA

You are correct. Media center will only support 4? tuners but there is a 3rd party software TunerSalad, I believe, that will increase the limit of tuners »www.hack7mc.com/2010/08/increasi···lad.html



Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1

said by wcda:

You are correct. Media center will only support 4? tuners but there is a 3rd party software TunerSalad, I believe, that will increase the limit of tuners »www.hack7mc.com/2010/08/increasi···lad.html

Right, I was aware of at least one such option fairly early on. However, the last I heard of it, it wasn’t a perfect solution. In other words there were some bugs.

***edit***

And naturally, its still a bit of a hack.


Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1
reply to jchambers28

Newegg has the Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650 with coupon code and MIR:


Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1
reply to jchambers28

Ceton officially drops the InfiniTV 4 price to $199

quote:
A device that was selling for around $600 on eBay just two years ago, is now officially priced at $199 -- the second $100 price drop in the past eight months -- and is available immediately from some of your favorite online retailers. That means both the USB and PCIe versions of the CableCARD tuner that can record four HD channels at once, cost a mere $50 per tuner. While this makes it the cheapest per-tuner CableCARD tuner ever available, the dual tuner Hauppauge WinTV DCR-2650 at $149 retail ($112 street) still requires the lowest total entry cost into the PC CableCARD tuner market. We've come a long way since ATI offered a single tuner for $299, but the still-pricey cards make it easy to understand understand why TV manufacturers and other set-top box makers, like Boxee, can't hide the price of a CableCARD tuner in the cost of their products.


»www.engadget.com/2012/02/20/ceto···-to-199/


jchambers28

join:2007-05-12
Alma, AR

That has me wanting it. I need to get me a replacement PSU first.


Pher9999

join:2011-07-06
Carmel, NY
reply to jchambers28

Ceton or silicondust HD prime are the 2 Cablecard tuners. I use the silicondust HD prime myself. It's a network tuner so don't need to tie it to a specific system. but allows flexibility. They make a 3 and 6 tuner model. It does tuner pooling. so it will share and use up to 6 for recordings.

Ceton I haven't used. but heard good things about them



Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1

said by Pher9999:

Ceton or silicondust HD prime are the 2 Cablecard tuners. I use the silicondust HD prime myself. It's a network tuner so don't need to tie it to a specific system. but allows flexibility. They make a 3 and 6 tuner model. It does tuner pooling. so it will share and use up to 6 for recordings.

Ceton I haven't used. but heard good things about them

Any particular reason you left out the Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650 when citing “the 2 Cablecard tuners” as you put it,…?

The Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650 may only be a dual CableCard solution but its also one of the cheapest which seems to be a major focus for the OP. Its not the cheapest per-tuner solution but it seems to be the cheapest of the newer options.

The next cheapest option would have been the SiliconDust HDHomeRun Prime (three tuners) at ~$200 but since the Ceton InfiniTV 4 (four tuners) can now be had for about the same ~$200 (less in some cases) it kind of makes the Prime x3 less attractive (unless you really wanted the network flexibility).


jchambers28

join:2007-05-12
Alma, AR
Reviews:
·Cox HSI
·AT&T Wireless Br..

Very true. The prices have come down a long way since they were first launched. I am tired of paying cox $20 a month for a DVR with limited recording space. This is a good entry level unit. I will get one of the other units once the priced drop even further. I needed something to get me off of paying $20 amoth for a cox DVR.



Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1

When the ATI DCT was launched I don't believe you could buy one without a qualifying OEM Media Center system. Total cost was about ~$1000+ just to start and that was single stream. So the cost of entry has definitely dropped significantly



jchambers28

join:2007-05-12
Alma, AR

I ordered the hauppauge tv tuner yesterday Fedex has it it should be here ant my home shortly. I am going to the cox store to pick up a cable card today. I am excited to finally get rid of watching analog cable and make the move to HD.


Pher9999

join:2011-07-06
Carmel, NY
reply to Octavean

I forgot they released one.

Personally I don't like/trust the USB ones.

I like the HD Prime just for the flexibity and it sits in my wiring closet in the basement. Media center PC is 2 floors up in bedroom, only needing a Ethernet cable.



Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1

The Ceton InfiniTV 4 Quad-tuner comes in both PCIe x1 and USB models so the like or dislike of USB wont necessarily be relevant for most buyers,…as they have a choice here. The Ceton has also been on the market longer and is likely more prevalent, proven and popular because of it. The price drop down to ~$200 for a quad is also likely to elevate its favor among many as well.

The benefits of the Ethernet interface also come with caveat. Stressing your network can effect performance. For example, I have a gigabit Ethernet network with four SiliconDust HDHomeRun units (8 Clear QAM streams) and multiple large file transfers can cause problems with recordings. A PCIe or USB based CableCard tuner wouldn’t be prone to such problems.



jchambers28

join:2007-05-12
Alma, AR
reply to jchambers28

How big of a HDD do i need for 300 HRS of HD recding?


JoelC707
Premium
join:2002-07-09
Lanett, AL
kudos:5

It's gonna depend on the compression method used (or lack thereof). Best I can find right off the bat is that one of the bigger Tivos advertises 300 hr HD recording capacity and uses a 2TB drive.



darcilicious
Cyber Librarian
Premium
join:2001-01-02
Forest Grove, OR
kudos:4
reply to jchambers28

High end estimate of about 6GB/hour for 1080i recordings that you get from cable companies.



jchambers28

join:2007-05-12
Alma, AR
reply to jchambers28

I need a 2 TB hard drive for HD recording where can i get one these days without costing a ton of money.



Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1

I bought a couple of WD My Book 3TB HDDs at Costco for ~$109 each about 4 months ago. I haven’t been looking much recently but the few times I did I didn’t much like what I was seeing price wise.

What size HDD do you have now? If you have something you can get started with now (~500GB or so) it could save you some coin rather then having to buy something now. Its not like Installing Windows since its easy to change the HDD used for recorded TV with a few clicks within the Media Center menu system. Also for multiple HD recordings its recommended to have the record HDD separate from the OS HDD.

From the Media Center home screen go to:

settings > TV > Recorder > Recorder Storage > Record on drive + / -

The default is “C:”. Just change it to whatever drive you add later either internal HDD or external HDD. If you like you should be able to move all your recordings or leave them on different HDDs. Some CableCard recordings will be encrypted but since it’s the same system doing the decrypting it shouldn’t be a problem.

So in short buy the 2TB HDD when you need the space, peck through the menu and you should be good.


JoelC707
Premium
join:2002-07-09
Lanett, AL
kudos:5

Can you set media center to record on multiple drives? Say you had one of the 3-6 tuner models all on one system. If you were trying to record 3+ different shows at once, be they SD or HD, the HDD can only write so much at once. Wouldn't it be better to write to different drives, basically 1 per tuner? Short of that the only thing I can think of would be a hardware assisted RAID array which is getting well beyond the scope of most HTPC installs not to mention more noise and heat generation.

Which would actually also be true if you had 3+ individual drives in the computer anyway. So how do they handle it? Has anyone done any testing to see how many channels can be recorded at once to the same HDD before issues arise?



Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1

I don’t think Microsoft Media Center can record to multiple locations at the same time. Perhaps Windows 8 Media Center has some under the hood changes but from what I have seen so far it doesn’t differ from the Windows 7 version in any way,……at all.

I suspect that having the OS HDD separate from the record HDD is good enough for a 4 or 6 recording setup under most conditions.

I use a Hauppauge HD PVR USB unit (H.264) with two Silicondust HDHomeRun units (QAM) for the bedroom Media Center system. That’s a 1 + 4 tuner configuration. Most of the time its fine but I also have a number of series recordings setup to automatically transfer to our local Windows Home Server. Added file transfers just adds to the disc activity (during heavy recordings) and network traffic. This is all off of a single HDD though.



darcilicious
Cyber Librarian
Premium
join:2001-01-02
Forest Grove, OR
kudos:4
Reviews:
·Frontier FiOS

said by Octavean:

I don’t think Microsoft Media Center can record to multiple locations at the same time. Perhaps Windows 8 Media Center has some under the hood changes but from what I have seen so far it doesn’t differ from the Windows 7 version in any way,……at all.

You might want to check out Windows 8 Storage Spaces

»arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/2···-all.ars

Pher9999

join:2011-07-06
Carmel, NY
reply to jchambers28

I use a WD Green 2.5TB drive, it records 3 HD feeds at a time just fine. It can do like 300Hours of storage. I do run a custom built Windows Home Server to offload all videos to that which is 6TB Hardware raid.


HarryH3
Premium
join:2005-02-21
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Suddenlink
reply to jchambers28

Target has a 2TB WD My Book Essential (Fan cooled) with USB 3.0 interface for $129.99. I just set one up with a USB 3 card (plugs into a PCIe x1 slot) and it's smokin' fast compared to a USB 2 model. I've attached a screenshot of the HD Tune benchmark. Seems like it's not too shabby for an external drive.