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confused newbie



I want to make a media centre pc with a case I can put under the telly which will get rid of the dvd player, sky box and video recorder.
Im confused about a few things I hope someone can help me out with....

The microsoft website says....
"How do I find out what's on TV?
Using Media Center's Program Guide, you can view and scroll through a listing of current TV 
shows that is periodically downloaded from your Microsoft TV listings service provider. 
The Guide displays channel and network information, along with the title and scheduled 
broadcast time of each show. When you select a show title, a short description of the show 
displays at the bottom of the screen."

So it downloads info... from the net I take it? But will it still work for uk freeview? If I want to record one channel and watch another does this mean I will need two of the Black Gold DVB-T cards? My Tv card will obviously need a signal input... can I use our sky dish for this or has it got to be the aerial on the roof?

Also because its to replace the stuff under the telly its not something I want to have to use the mouse and keyboard with...ever. Can I just flick the switch in the morning and pick up the remote and browse my way to News 24 like I would with sky?

I hope someone can help me! Im full of questions but I want to get this menu thing sorted in my head first.


Hmmmm. I think there's a lot more info you need to be asking before you part with any cash so make sure you read through all the relevant parts on these forums.

DVB-T = Freeview = TV aerial (but you may need to upgrade the aerial if you're in a poor signal aerial). Try the Freeview website for basic info. This ain't Sky and if you want to try the more complicated route of getting a sky signal into a HTPC then there are some great threads on this in these forums. (The cards for this are DVB-S = satellite = dish).

If using Freeview, MCE downloads a 14 day TV guide from the internet regularly for the Freeview channels you've got set up on your HTPC. This guide many think is a significant improvement on the Sky guide.

If you want to have the ability to watch a channel whilst another recorded you need either 2 separate DVB-T cards or a dual tuner DVB-T card (one card that does this all for you). Look at the threads on the Blackgold dual tuner, Terratec 2400i, Hauppauge Nova-T 500 for info on reliability/problems. There's also a little discussed Pinnacle dual tuner card that's a good price (and I like) too.

Can I just flick the switch in the morning and pick up the remote and browse my way to News 24 like I would with sky?


Thanks for the reply.
The signal from sky was a long shot but you never know! :)
We are definitely going to have to get a better aerial setup on the roof.... at this rate freeview is going to cost more than sky did!

Once again Many Thanks

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