Using my notebook as a Tivo replacement

Discussion in 'Computers' started by MikeJason, Jul 18, 2004.

  1. MikeJason

    MikeJason Agent

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    I bought an external USB 2.0 device called WinTV that is supposed to act as a Tivo replacement. I have not yet opened it.

    Does anyone know anything about it? Does it actually work like a Tivo?

    I want to connect it to my notebook and connect an external DVD burner to my notebook and just burn stuff to DVD later on.

    any issues with this?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Seth--L

    Seth--L Screenwriter

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    To start with, I'd imagine that you'd want to connect that via firewire, not USB.
     
  3. MikeJason

    MikeJason Agent

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    well, the device is only USB 2.0 and does not have a FireWire port. Do you think there will be issues with transfering video through it?
     
  4. Kyle McKnight

    Kyle McKnight Cinematographer

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    USB 2.0 = 480Mbps max
    firewire = 400Mbps max

    I don't think it'd make that big of a difference.
     
  5. Tony Loewen

    Tony Loewen Stunt Coordinator

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    I have pinnacle PCTV deluxe, it is a usb 2.0 tv tuner device and it works great, the only complaint I would have about it is that it takes about 1 and 1/2 secs to change channels with the remote. The picture quality is better on my laptop than it is on the TV in the living room. I got it as a tivo and to put home video on the computer, and also to record my favorite tv shows. Mission accomplished. The PCTV deluxe can capture video (mpeg-2) at up to 720 x 480, and comes with a conversion utility to convert to mpeg-1, 2, or 4 (vcd, svcd, dvd, avi). You can pause live TV, fast forward (given that you have time shifted enough, ie paused it for a while), and replay. One thing I noticed while watching the TV tuner on the laptop, and the TV side by side, there is about a 1 sec delay on the tuner.

    So, if this WinTV is anthing like the PCTV deluxe, it will do exactly what you want it to.
     
  6. MikeJason

    MikeJason Agent

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    cool, thanks for the reply!

    1. does this device you have work with your tv or only your laptop? so can you pause tv while watching on your tv, or only only on your laptop?

    2. how big is 720 X 480? I know what that is on a computer monitor, but what does it equate to on a tv?
     
  7. Steve Berger

    Steve Berger Supporting Actor

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    Mike , your WinTV is an input device only . Output will depend on the capabilities of your notebook. 720x480 is your basic DVD format and should appear like a normal TV picture. If you're just getting started with mpeg capture , encoding , authoring , and burnimg then you should start doing some research because it can get complicated. Videohelp.com has a lot of general information while SHSpvr.com probably has the most (overwhelmimg ?) info on the Hauppauge devices along with a very active forum.

    (The time lag is due to the nature of a hardware encoder , it has to buffer information in order to compress it.)
     
  8. Tony Loewen

    Tony Loewen Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree with Steve, just about everything I know about encoding/transcoding, i learned from videohelp.com (dvdrhelp.com or vcdhelp.com, they area all the same page). When I ran this box on my main desktop computer, I could, if I wanted to, set it up so that I took the cable signal in through the USB device, and put it out on my video-out on the video card. My laptop doesn't have video out, but it would work the same. You just have to have your video card set up to output to your TV. Also, as Steve mentioned, 720x480 is standard DVD res. An NTSC signal, which is standard television signal in North America, is 352x240, if I remember correct.
     

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