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Euro 1080 on HTPC configuration problem

Discussion in 'TVs' started by helipilot, Nov 15, 2003.

  1. helipilot

    helipilot
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    I am not sure if I should be posting this question here or in HTPC forum.

    Moderator, feel free to move post if this forum is not appropriate.


    I have just had a TRIAX 80 cm dish with two LNB's installed. One pointed at 28 degrees for Sky digital and one pointed at 19 degrees for Euro 1080. The Euro 1080 one is connected to my HTPC via a Skystar 2 card. I have installed DVBViewer and ProgDVB software. The HTPC has an Athlon 2000+ processor and Radeon 9600 Pro video card.

    All normal digital TV channels work perfect on either Software package but I am having problems with Euro 1080. I get one of four things happening when I try to View Euro 1080.

    1) During Initialisation of the channel I get an Mpeg2 error.

    2) I get a static picture with perfect sound (cpu usage around 4%)

    3) I get a stunning moving picture but no sound (cpu usage around 40%)

    4) I get picture and sound which is totally unwatchable or listenable. Sound breaks up and picture breaks up into square blocks.

    I suspect I have some sort of audio/video render problem. On most occassions I get scenario 4.

    Can anyone suggest a cure ?

    thanks
     
  2. Chris Muriel

    Chris Muriel
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    There's nothing amiss with the RF side of that setup.
    I don't have personal experience with Skystar cards (I have 2 PCI cards but they are Broadlogic2030 & Twinhan VP1020). I use Hans Van Oostrom's DVBApps s/ware with both cards - but he doesn't support the SS cards as they are pretty rare in the USA (he lives in Florida).
    HDTV does require a lot of processing power and a good video card . I have a 2GHz Pentium 4 (512 MB RAM) and a Radeon 8500LE (128 MB) with Win98SE as my OS. This works quite well for Euro1080 (and is virtually identical to Hans' own setup).
    HDTV has so much data (20 Mbps) that many systems have problems handling it.
    Thus I am wondering if addditons or tweaks to your PC system might help.
    What is your VGA card? General concensus on the USA satforums is that ATI cards perofrm better for HDTV than Nvidia or other cards.
    What video & audio codecs are you using with ProgDVB ? I would assume Elecard (but if so, which version? - some had bugs).

    Have you thought about asking on one of the Skystar or ProgDVB forums elsewhere ?
    We are dealing with what is currently a niche area.

    Hope this helps.
    Chris Muriel, Manchester.
     
  3. rigman

    rigman
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    Helipilot

    I would be interested to see how you get on. I have just ordered a skystar 2 for my PC just to watch normal broadcasts for now as my PC is only an Athlon 1gig so has not a hope in hell of coping with HDTV. I do plan to upgrade it in the near future though as that was the main reason for me getting off my arse and installing my motorised system over a year after moving house.

    A silly suggestion probably but I will say it anyway :rolleyes:

    Are you sure your dish is aligned 100%. It has been quite windy lately and I find that sometimes the signal can break up on weaker channels. I assume that the signal from 1080 will not be on the most high powered transponder as it probably costs more for them.
    When I was setting my dish up it was slightly off on Hotbird yet I was getting BBC world perfect but most of the other channels were breaking up or not being shown at all.

    Your video card looks to be a recent one so should be quite powerfull.

    Darren

    btw what is currently being shown on the Euro 1080 channel?
     
  4. helipilot

    helipilot
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    Update time :-

    Chris,

    My Video card is a Radeon 9600 Pro 128Mb
    I was using the elecard, I am not sure which version but it is the latest downloaded from Technisat site yesterday.

    Darren,

    New dish was just installed yesterday so alignment should be bang on.

    Euro 1080 is currently broadcasting a loop of various concerts, images etc.


    I have now tried four pieces of software. Since posting yesterday I tried DVBPortal but it does not seem to like my machine.

    This morning I downloaded Skyview from :-


    http://www.cait.com.pl/dvb.php?sect=eng


    This one is clearly the winner at the moment. With Skyview I get perfect sound and vision with only 46% CPU usage !

    The image is breathtaking, way beyond normal dvd quality.

    HDTV working at last
    :) :) ;)
     
  5. rigman

    rigman
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    I did say it was a silly suggestion :blush:

    Great to hear you have got it working I was hoping you would with that processor as it means that I dont have to spend the money to upgrade my computer to a P4 3 gig. Probably get a Xp2600 or something esle that is very near to being obsolete and hence cheap. :)

    Are you viewing it through a projector or just on your PC monitor at the moment?

    best regards
    Darren
     
  6. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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  7. Muf

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    Alan
    A bit late in replying but glad to see you got it working. I was in the same situtation a few weeks ago and got it working with DVBviewer and some help from the guys on the DVB forum. I would like to point out for anybody else interested in receiving Euro1080, this is not a hit and miss process. It works perfectly without a glitch including recording to hard drive. Darren a P4 2.6 is more than adequate. I use the following and the CPU usage ranges from 22% to 32%.

    P4 2.6 / 512k RAM / Win XP
    ATI 9200
    SkyStar2
    DVBviewer (full version €15)
    Marfi filter latest version
    Win DVD 4 ( for Intervideo codecs)
    hardware acceleration enabled in the registery. (DXVA and HWMC)

    The recording takes about 6.6 GigaBytes per hour.

    Jim
     
  8. BrianCurran

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    Alan

    I recently discovered the Skyview player also, after experiencing audio and video problems with the other players.

    Its the DVB equivalent of Zoomplayer. Awesome.

    Have you tried any of the Dolby Digital channels on 19.2 using the WinDVD audio filter?

    Regards
     
  9. zAndy1

    zAndy1
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    What exactly do you need to download for that Skyview software, it's not exactly obvious on the site linked to on this thread..

    Cheers
    Andy
     
  10. Pulsar

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    Hello,

    Glad you have got the HDTV working now Helipilot.:clap:

    Now I am starting to get very excited about the prospect of getting some HDTV for viewing on my projector through my HTPC, but I need plenty of advice.

    Firstly, I have quite a meaty HTPC that will handle the stress. I can see that I need some sort of PCI card to capture the information from the satelite dish. I have seen the name sktstar mentioned quite alot, are they the best? Where can I get one from, and how much?

    Secondly, I obviously need a satelite dish. I have never used satelite before, (Use cable TV) so I have no idea how they work or how to set them up etc. Can someone give me some basic info on this please? If this is a job for a professional, then how much does it generaly cost?

    Sorry for all of the questions, but I need to see if it is worth me looking into setting it all up, as I don't have loads of spare cash at the moment. If anyone can point me towards any other web forums with info on them, then I would be most greatful.

    Finally, what sort of programmes are being shown on Euro 1080 ???

    Cheers

    Rob
     
  11. nfordenfield

    nfordenfield
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    watching this thread with interest!!!!!
     
  12. Pulsar

    Pulsar
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  13. rigman

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    Pulsar,

    yes thats the card. I ordered the very same card last week and are still awaiting its arrival.

    The 70cm dish should be good enough to get Astra 19E.

    Unfortunately my PC needs a few upgrades to get it powerful enough for HiDef but at least I will get a chance to play with the software on the normal channels before I upgrade it and hook it up to my Projector.

    You could try and install it yourself with a bit of homework. You need to find your latitude and then work out the angles you need to have the mount. A cheap meter can also work wonders in locating the satellite. I have just installed my 1.2 metre motorised system with trial and error and it is now spot on the arc and I can see all the satellites from 42 E to 43 west.

    good luck

    Darren
     
  14. helipilot

    helipilot
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    BrianCurran,

    I have not had much of a chance to experiment with dolby digital channels yet. Can you suggest some for me to try ?

    Andy,

    I think everything you need is in the skyview.zip file.

    Rob,

    I bought my skystar 2 PCI card from Infiniti computers in Glasgow www.infiniti.co.uk for £55.00. I did not bother with the remote control.

    The Satellite dish cost around £30. A universal LNB is around £20 coax cable around £10. Professional installation will add around £50-£70. I already had sky digital and wanted to continue to use it from the new dish, so I also needed a multiple LNB mount and another Universal LNB (the one on the sky digital mini dish did not suit the multiple mount).

    At the moment a demo program loop is running. It shows various sports clips, music clips, concerts and a bit of "Blue Peter". It even has some Bikini clad girls (Gordon)

    .....................................................

    I suspect getting HDTV via HTPC will become more popular as January 2004 approaches. At the moment I am still climbing a rather steep learning curve regarding getting the best out of filter graphs etc. I have purchased the full version of DVBViewer and have managed to get it to run using the same filter that skyview uses.

    Any hints and tips on building graphs would be most appreciated.


    cheers


    Alan
     
  15. Pulsar

    Pulsar
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    Darren,

    Thanks for the great info. I am studying some mathematics at university at the moment, so I am sure either myself or one of my friends will be able to do the relevant calculations.

    Alan,

    Could you give me a contact for the dish you purchased. That price seems a bit better than the one on the unternet I found. Thanks

    I think I am getting most of the info sorted in my head now. You point the satelite dish towards the satelite in space that is broadcasting the signal. The dish reflects that signal for teh LNB to pick up and convert into a signal to pass down somne coaxial cable. This is then input into the card on the PC, where decoding software is used to get a picture.

    How many channels should I be able to get, other than the one Hidef channel?

    Cheers

    Rob
     
  16. helipilot

    helipilot
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    Rob,

    Prices quoted were from Glasgow Satellite Centre.

    I went in and spoke to someone (elderly gent, sorry don't know his name) who gave me ball park figures for all the parts required.

    They have a web site which might help as well, if nothing else it has their phone number.


    http://www.asksat.com

    Alan
     
  17. twarde

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    If you want to do a DIY dish installation for Astra 1, just get hold of an old analogue receiver and use that for to align your dish.

    There are quite a few analogue transponders on Astra1 e.g. CNN,
    CNBC, ZDF. The details are all at:

    http://www.lyngsat.com/europe.shtml

    With analogue transmission its much easier to pick up the signal
    by panning the dish horizontally from across the sky, the changing the vertical angle slightly and panning again. Once you've got a weak sparkly picture you can adjust the dish for the best signal. Dont forget to tune the reciever to the correct channel for CNN etc before you start.

    You can pick up an old analogue receiver and dish from the free ads papers or car boot sales. Try EBAY if you want a brand new dish.
     
  18. Pulsar

    Pulsar
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    Thanks for the help and info guys. I shall start to look more deeply into this.

    Cheers

    Rob
     
  19. rigman

    rigman
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    Pulsar

    here is a link that you may find useful

    http://www.geo-orbit.org/sizepgs/decchartp.html

    I have had my dish for a few years. I moved house 18 months ago and Hidef was the kick I needed to reinstall it.

    There is a few hundred channels on the Astra satellite a lot of them scrambled but a motorised system will get you thousands.

    I have just got a matrix reloaded cam for my Echostar which has enabled me to access a few more ;)


    good luck
    Darren
     
  20. rigman

    rigman
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    Just as a further note. I hooked up my old Nokia 9200 with Dr overflow software today and I am managing to view Euro 1080 on a normal Tv. The signal is blocky but I get picture and sound. The picture looks like an old video though. Very grainy.

    My all singing all dancing Echostar 3000IP will not even look at it and gives a green screen before crashing shortly after.

    The Nokia can even decode 4:2:2 feeds when hooked up to a PC via SCSI. Normally the equipment to decode that costs thousands. Just shows just because something is a few years old doesnt mean its obsolete.

    Darren
     
  21. Chris Muriel

    Chris Muriel
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    None of the tests from Euro1080 that I have watched (21-inch monitor and PC with PCI cards) look at all grainy.

    You are lucky with the Nokia 9200 - people have had different levels of success dependent on which STB (9200, 9500, 9600 etc.)
    and which version of 3rd party s/ware (or firmware) they used.

    My Tandberg System3000 (19-inch rack unit as used by $ky in their studios) gets perfect sound and just the bottom 1-eigth of the picture perfectly (the rest is blank screen) ; so I can see people's feet and calves in HDTV !

    Chris Muriel, Manchester.
     
  22. rigman

    rigman
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    Yes grainy

    I dont really expect hidef pictures on a normal TV via SCART and I am suprised I am getting any picture at all.
    Your monitor will be able to show hi def due to its resolution I think. When I get my skystar I will try it on my monitor athough the PC probably will not be able to show it as it is only 1 gig athlon. I am going to hook up the Nokia to the PC via its SCSI port and see what I get as well.

    cheers
    Darren
     
  23. Chris Muriel

    Chris Muriel
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    If your PC is only 1GHz, I would suggest recording the content first and then, with no background apps running, play it offline.
    The only problem is that HDTV requires a lot of disk space - a problem that I know set-top PVR manufacturers are wrestling with right now (I am in touch with the design teams for some of these).

    Chris Muriel.
     
  24. helipilot

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    Brian,

    I have just managed to get AC3 sound working. It is available on Pro 7, Sat 1 and ZDF. I modified my hdtv filter to cope with the AC3 signal. I used Vigovsky AC3 filter for the audio. I thought I had stopped messing about with graphs when I started using Theatertek, alas not so!

    I will need to keep my eyes peeled for an ac3 signal on Euro1080

    cheers

    Alan
     
  25. BrianCurran

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    Yes, AC3 on EURO 1080 would be nice.

    Regards
     
  26. johnm60

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    Just got a Skystar 2 and I am having problems just like Helipilot did. I have tried to follow the instructions with regard to the Intervideo settings etc, but still get picture and so sound, vice versa or a crash and even when I get a picture only, it always freezes at specific points in the programme loop the Euro1080 are currently sending.

    I initially installed DVBViewer from the Skystar CD and spent the €15 on the full version and then installed it. I have WinDVD 5 on my machine rather than 4.

    My setup.ini is shown below. Any hints would be greatly appreciated.

    Cheers
    John

    [Stations]
    1=0|Das Erste
    2=90|VOX
    3=35|DSF
    4=3|SAT.1
    5=5|RTL2
    6=4|RTL Television
    7=8|KABEL1
    8=8|KABEL1
    9=59|ProSieben
    0=541|Fritz
    [Info]
    Version=DVB Viewer V1.99R9a
    [General]
    XPIcons=1
    Cursor=1
    SSaver=1
    SSaverBF=0
    Winlirc=0
    CTimer=3
    Language=English
    Plugins=\Plugins
    CaptureDir=\Capture
    Timeshift=
    RememberPos=0
    Renderer=2
    Split=0
    SplitSize=640
    Retune=0
    Output=1
    IgnoreErrors=0
    Timezone=2
    Filterdump=1
    Realmpeg=1
    XPLook=0
    Priority=3
    Fastswitch=1
    ZapDelay=1
    Radiomode=0
    AvoidOnTop=1
    ZapTimer=1000
    TaskSysTray=0
    WinDVBStyle=0
    SemiTransparent=0
    EPGUpdate=0
    NoEPG=0
    Remember=0
    EPGPopup=1
    EPGPopupDelay=4
    PersistentEPG=0
    DispRecBtn=0
    InfoFile=0
    SmartBuffer=0
    BufferSize=2
    VMR=80
    HideMenu=0
    Statusbar=1
    NoTitlebar=0
    Toolbar=1
    LastSender=8719|MPEG2 HD
    Aspect=0
    Volume=1
    MiniEPG=0
    [Teletext]
    Font=Courier New
    TTLang=8
    Rendersize=1
    RenderSizeX=470
    RenderSizeY=444
    Fullscreen=0
    Bold=0
    Color0=0
    Color1=255
    Color2=65280
    Color3=65535
    Color4=16711680
    Color5=16711935
    Color6=16776960
    Color7=16777215
    [Controls]
    Wheel=0
    [AudioOut]
    Device=Default DirectSound Device
    [DeDynamic]
    UseDeDynamic=1
    Amp=10
    PreAmp=100
    Radio=0
    [Marfi.AX]
    Videocodec=Intervideo Mpeg2 Codec
    Audiocodec=InterVideo Audio Decoder
    [Subtitles]
    Font=Arial Black|$FFFFFF|18|238|
    [Colors]
    Brightness=750
    Contrast=10000
    Hue=0
    Saturation=10000
    Sharpness=0
    Gamma=1
    [Display]
    X=287
    Y=164
    W=450
    H=440
    OnTop=0
    VertStretch=0
    HoriStretch=0
    PanScan=0
    LeftOffset=0
    TopOffset=0
    Duration=0
    [frmEPG]
    X=471
    Y=214
    W=550
    H=442
    [frmTimeshift]
    X=304
    Y=223
    [frmRecWin]
    X=411
    Y=319
    [frmPlaylist]
    X=487
    Y=149
    W=295
    H=545
    [frmPreview]
    X=118
    Y=464
    W=411
    H=300
    [frmOpenURL]
    X=484
    Y=378
    [frmChannellist]
    X=690
    Y=138
    W=295
    H=621
    [frmAbout]
    X=441
    Y=218
    [frmZoom]
    X=307
    Y=356
    [frmColors]
    X=208
    Y=117
    [frmRecorder]
    X=232
    Y=224
    [frmTeletext]
    X=513
    Y=117
    W=479
    H=502
    [frmSearch]
    X=480
    Y=329
    [frmOptions]
    X=482
    Y=152
    [EPG]
    Filter=0
    ActualFilter=2
    [Renderer]
    LastFile=
    LastPos=0
    [URLHistory]
    Count=0
     
  27. helipilot

    helipilot
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    John,

    To get HDTV to work with DVB Viewer :-


    1) Make sure you have the full version installed.
    2) Make sure you have installed the graph selector plugin.
    3) Go to settings....options... and choose Marfi's filter as the source filter.
    4) Go to the plugins...graph selector.....SkyAVC graphs.....select your custom graphfile.


    To make your custom graph file :-

    This can be created in Graph Edit.

    1) start up dvbviewer (you need to do this to ensure all filters are installed)
    2) start graph edit.
    3) pause DVBViewer.
    4) have a look at my graph file and create something similar but using your Windvd video decoder.
    5) save the graphfile in the appropriate graph file folder within DVBViewer.

    Its not that easy but you will be rewarded !


    Here is what my graph file looks like in graph edit.
     

    Attached Files:

  28. johnm60

    johnm60
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    Brilliant. That did the trick. Runs nice and stable at less than 50% CPU.

    Thanks
    John
     
  29. John_N

    John_N
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    This is all new to me. I've just discovered the HDTV forum after being impressed watching some HDTV clips on my HS10.

    I've a few questions, so here goes:

    1. I gather that new Euro1080 programming starts in January 2004. I haven't seen any info about what sort of programming, how many channels. and what language the programs will be in?

    2. I currently use a HTPC with a nebula digi-TV card for terrestrial TV and that drives the HS10. The CPU of the HTPC is about to be uprated to an Athlon XP3000+ which I gather is about the same as a P4 2.8ghz according to tomshardware. Is this going to be enough (for a PC based card) or do people think I may need a whole new platform (based on P4 3ghz sort of thing).

    3. Assuming that I use the HTPC, I need a card. I've seen the posts about the SkyStar cards - so am I right in thinking that this card will do the job and allow me to pick up HDTV from the Euro1080 service? Any further info about what else the card will pick up would be appreciated - for example - suppose the dish was pointed at whatever satellite sky digital comes from. Would I be able to receive the non-scrambled channels such as sky news or whatever?

    3. On the subject of sky digital, do any of these PC cards allow you to plug in a sky card and therefore get the rest of the channels?

    4. Would I be better off not using the HTPC at all but going for a dedicated STB like the Zinwell ZDX-410HD which I saw mentioned in another thread?

    5. Finally. I need a dish and LNB. I know nothing about dishes and LNB. I gather I need a 'standard' 90cm dish. Does the LNB need to be bought separately and specially? I gather you can get digtal and analogue LNBs but not sure about which dish goes with which LNB and which digital receiver (or PC card). Therefore some advice on sourcing these parts would be appreciated.

    6.(added) - AND - I don't have an analog dish + receiver to get it 'nearly there'. So lets say I buy the disk, LNB, card, cable, software. How do I get the dish aligned?

    Lots of questions.
    Help appreciated.
    Thanks
    John
     
  30. helipilot

    helipilot
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    So many questions John !

    Here goes :-

    1) Have a look at Euro1080 web site.

    2) Athlon XP3000+ will be more than adequate with the added bonus it will also run HD DVD like Terminator 2 provided you have a video card with a DX9 core. (Radeon 9600 or similar)

    3) The Skystar cards will allow you to access just about any digital satellite transmission that is available free to air in the UK. As you say you just realign the dish to what ever satellite you require and away you go. Re aligning the dish on a daily basis can be done either by having a motorised dish or multiple LNB's on a fixed dish (within reaso....... Sky Digital and Euro 1080 can be achieved with an 80cm fixed dish and two LNB's. You can get free to air programmes like Sky News and CNN this way but not necessarily free to view (like most BBC channels).

    Many channels are encrypted and require a viewing card to descramble them. In this case the basic skystar 2 will not be suitable as there is no card reader slot. Currently and for about the next 3 to 4 months we expect to be able to receive Euro1080 free. After that a one off subscription will need to be paid. You will then get a lifetime viewing card which can be put into a set top box or into a slot in a suitable PC card. At the moment Euro 1080 have not issued details of their "PC user solution". I currently use a skystar 2 but suspect I will need to change it when encryption comes along.

    4) If you go for a dedicated set top box it will could cost around £500. Current STB's are "Demo" models and do not have a card reader. This means that in 3 or 4 months time you will need to upgrade to an STB with a viewing card slot. Currently AFAIK there are no HDTV ready boxes with viewing card slots available in Europe. This is very much a developing technology and I would advise sticking with the HTPC solution until the dust settles. We do not know how long it will take for other HDTV transmissions to start. Best to leave your options as open as possible.

    5) I bought a TRIAX 80 cm dish with a twin LNB arm and two universal digital LNB's installed. One pointed at 28 degrees for Sky digital and one pointed at 19 degrees for Euro 1080. There are various sources for these parts, have a look at your yellow pages or pick up a copy of What Satellite TV.

    6) Look up your "yellow pages". Satellite installers or TV Ariel Installers should be able to help you. It would be better to get all the parts (except the PC card) from them as well.

    January 2004 What Satellite TV should be about to hit the shelves and promises more information on Euro 1080.

    cheers


    Alan
     

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