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dual tuner dvr hd

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by Mark Modrall, Feb 9, 2007.

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  1. Mark Modrall

    Mark Modrall Guest

    Not sure if this is the right forum to ask the question in, but I'm
    looking for a straightforward dual tuner dvr with a hard drive. I've
    been looking around online, and it's not clear from any of the listings
    I've found which ones *require* a Tivo or cable provider subscription to

    Basically, i'm just trying to replace the vcr; I don't want a $20/mo
    subscription fee.

    Are there any reasonably priced things in that category?

  2. Guest

    I really do not know what they cost, but I am pretty sure if you just
    buy your own DVR you shouldn't need a subscription. I am not sure, but
    if couldn't get a DVR free and clear, that is I own it and it works, I
    simply don't think I'll ever have one.

    Even if you can get a DVR free and clear, I doubt many of them have
    two tuners. So if that's what you need I think you'll need to buy
    two.Also you may want the ones with ATSC or digital cable tuners,
    because really, there is not much good on regular TV.(unless someone
    there avidly follows two soap operas)

    I would have to look into it, I might be able to build a PC that can
    do this. While you only have one AGP slot, there should be no reason
    that two such cards would not work simulateously.They go in PCI slots.
    And I am sure setting it up would not be easy, in fact you would be
    best off buying two different brand cards. Let the person who builds
    the PC pick them, I think it would be best if they had different
    chipsets. The name on the box means nothing.

    All depends on if you are happy with NTSC (not hi def).

    Also the ATSC tuner I installed in a PC required a subscription, not
    to work, but to download the channel list. Not only does it not seem
    to have a feature to seek out all ATSC channels, I happen to know
    their channel list was out of date for this area as of about 6 months
    ago. I know this because I have worked on TVs with built in ATSC and
    digital cable tuners. They also had a slot for a smartcard, but even
    without it it found about 20-30 channels I didn't know we had.

    Perhaps you might be better off with a DVR and a DVDr. I'm assuming
    you want to record two shows at the same time. Perhaps the combo of
    the two, that is if you are achiving one or both shows. If you are
    time shifting both, a DVDR would be less than desirable, since you
    will have to keep buying blanks.

    It all depends on why you are recording. We would need to know that to
    give any more informed advice.

  4. j

    j Guest

    built their own DVR's with dual tuners, they are happy, but the
    software is buggy at times. The people who use Microsoft Media Center
    PC's seem much happier. I have a single tuner HP MCE PC that I've
    been using since they first came out and it's performed flawlessly. I
    also have 2 Linksys Media Center Extenders that are wired in, so I
    don't have to listen to a noisy PC over my TV. They work fairly
    well, I have to reboot them every now and then (turn them ON/OFF) but
    your mileage may vary.
  5. What software are you talkng about exactly? I currently run 3 DVB-T tuners,
    and I've heard of people running 4 or more sucessfully using Linux, with
    multiple clients throughout the house. There's no real reason why 2
    identical tuners will pose more of a problem than two completley different
    chipsets, though, as ever with computers it's best to research which tuners
    work well and which sink like a brick.

    Unless you live in one of those Microsoftian Utopias that often play a part
    of MCE's advertising (you know, where everyone is unoffensive, wears pastels
    and windows just works) - I would strongly advuse against using MS Windows
    as your PVR server. Having your main Windoze desktop running your TV
    software is going to cause a lot of problems when you want to play games,
    perform any sort of intensive disk operation (anyone defragging?), restart
    your computer because of security updates, or jsut because "it needs a
    restart". Using GNU/Linux software on affordable hardware can result in very
    competent setups, that are headless, easy to shove in a cupboard and offer
    24 hour uptime. All the server does is move around the MPEG2 video, you can
    run VDR on 500Mhz processors and with a few hundred megabytes of ram an a
    100Mbps LAN.

    Another feature of some of the many Linux based software is the ability to
    record more than one channel per tuner. As digital TV is multiplexed onto
    one carrier wave, the tuner can pull as many channels from the signal as
    your hardware will allow. So with 3 tuners I never have to worry about
    recording too many programs at once, while wanting to watch live TV.

    Linux based software will encourage and assist you in the removal of adverts
    from recordings, burning to DVD, transcoding to a stronger compression
    format for archving, all the time integrating well with Windows networks.
    Microsoft will forever stoop to the demands of DRM, until the world realises
    what a shit deal it all is. iPod not so useful anymore oncce you realise how
    crap iTunes is?

    If you can't receive a digital signal then you should look at MythTV. This
    software was built around using the Hauppage PVR Hardware MPEG2 line of
    cards and is competent if fairly complicated to setup. Fortunatly there are
    booting CD's that will turn your old Win98 machine into a MythTV setup
    within a few minutes.

    If you CAN get digital, then I'd have a look at VDR - german based software
    built around DVB-S receivers but which works very well with DVB-T. A simple
    interface and fantastic reliabaility are what convinced me to use this
    program. You can use VDR as your recording server and then connect with
    prettier clients if you prefer. After using this software for months now, I
    can testify that my time spent in front of the TV is now well spent and
    fairly light, rather than hours of flicking though the detritus and
    gobshites that are everywhere on UK Freeview. Plus no adverts!

    If you are fairly techy then you might already have a Linux based file
    server in your house, it's easy to turn this into a PVR server. Needless to
    say, if most of this sounds gibberish, then perhaps Windows MCE is for you,
    however I'd avoid it like the plague.
    Consider yourself lucky - I've not head many good things about Media Centre
    Edition, except from people with the budget to buy high spec computers and
    well known branded digital receivers.
    These are supported by some Linux based PVR software. VDR is one of them
    though the interface is polled from the server, meaning it's a little
  6. Try here Mark,
    UK based site but the products must be similar to US ones.
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