Need cheapest / bestest way to turn my PC into a DVR

Discussion in 'Amateur Video Production' started by crutnacker, Mar 6, 2005.

  1. crutnacker

    crutnacker Guest

    I'm looking to use my computer to record and burn programming from my
    cable company, but I'm not sure how to get started. I don't care
    about HDTV at this point, I'm just looking for a cheap way to
    timeshift, record, and then be able to burn simple DVDs of the programs
    I've recorded. What tuner hardware is best value? Are there any
    that include decent software?

    If you can direct me to websites or other easily accessible
    information, I would appreciate it.

    Visit for my opinions. for a laugh.
    crutnacker, Mar 6, 2005
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  2. crutnacker

    leo Guest

    I can't comment on what value TV card to get but in terms of quality,
    the ATI Theater 550 Pro chip is amazing because it has hardware MPEG2
    encorder. I can't easily tell the difference between live and recorded
    video. I bought the Sapphire version for $83. You'd need a DVD burning
    program to make DVD; something like Nero might work.
    leo, Mar 7, 2005
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  3. crutnacker

    jaykchan Guest

    Try these:

    - SnapStream Beyond-TV software with Hauppauge PVR-250 TV tuner and
    MPEG hardware encoder running in Windows. This is what I use at home.
    It comes with lift-time subscription to download TV shows info.

    - May also check myHTPC that runs in Windows. I don't have personal
    experience with it. Hopefully, someone can provide additional info
    about this.

    - May also check MythPC that runs in Linux. Again, I don't have
    personal experience with it.

    Beyond-TV doesn't have HDTV functionality. I don't know whether the
    other two have HDTV functionality or not. If you see HDTV in the
    future (like one year or two), and _if_ your cable company let you use
    a DVR device without buying it and only need a low monthly fee, you may
    be better off get that DVR device instead of spending the money and
    time to upgrade your PC and such. You will not want to spend money and
    time to get PVR functionality and dislike it soon after because it
    doesn't do HDTV.

    If I remember correctly, we can get to use a DVR without upfront cost
    from DISH Network if you a new customer and if you are willingly to pay
    a monthly fee to use that DVR (not high if I remember this correct).
    You probably need to sign an one-year contract though. You may want to
    check the info yourself because my memory is just not very good.

    Later on, when PVR with HDTV becomes a mature technology, you can
    cancel the contract on the DVR (assuming you have fulfilled the minimum
    contract period), and setup PVR with HDTV in your PC.

    Jay Chan
    jaykchan, Mar 7, 2005
  4. crutnacker

    jaykchan Guest

    I meant to say MythTV, not MythPC.

    Jay Chan
    jaykchan, Mar 7, 2005
  5. crutnacker

    Tim Guest

    Try Meedio ( It's the all-in-one solution for
    PC-TV-Media-Music etc.

    Tim, Mar 9, 2005
  6. crutnacker

    David Chien Guest + wintv cards for <$30 on and elsewhere.

    Otherwise, any ATI All-In-Wonder card for cheap on - this gives
    you the same and includes ATI's own TV tuning/recording software, which
    David Chien, Mar 15, 2005
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