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I want BBCHD,ITVHD what Tuner???

Dr Force

Distinguished Member
Hi guys here is my rig which i am currently building:-


Case - Silverstone LC17,13E,20 -
Pioneer Blu-ray Drive
Corsair TX 750W ATX SLI Compliant Power Supply
Mobo Asus PT6 Deluxe V2
Memory - Corsair 6GB (3x2GB) DDR3 PC3-16000
HDD - Samsung Spin point F3 1T x2
ATI Radeon HD 5870 graphics
WIN7 operating system
Auzentech X-Fi Forte 7.1 Low Profile PCI Express Sound Card-£115
Intel i7 920, D0 SLBEJ S1366

as per the title, i want a top quality TV tuner so i can watch in decent SD quality and also have access to the free to air HD channels.

Can you please recommend a tuner that will give me this as i am unsure what is the most suitable. (£120 budget but could stretch)
 

EliteAV

Active Member
Hi guys here is my rig which i am currently building:-


Case - Silverstone LC17,13E,20 -
Pioneer Blu-ray Drive
Corsair TX 750W ATX SLI Compliant Power Supply
Mobo Asus PT6 Deluxe V2
Memory - Corsair 6GB (3x2GB) DDR3 PC3-16000
HDD - Samsung Spin point F3 1T x2
ATI Radeon HD 5870 graphics
WIN7 operating system
Auzentech X-Fi Forte 7.1 Low Profile PCI Express Sound Card-£115
Intel i7 920, D0 SLBEJ S1366

as per the title, i want a top quality TV tuner so i can watch in decent SD quality and also have access to the free to air HD channels.

Can you please recommend a tuner that will give me this as i am unsure what is the most suitable. (£120 budget but could stretch)

If you are going to be using Windows Media Center (WMC) you will probably want a dual tuner satellite (DVB-S) card which will allow you to watch 1 programme whilst recording another (or record 2 programmes at the same time). A single tuner system would be a bit of a limitation if this is what you are going to be doing most of your TV viewing with.

I was looking for exactly this a couple of weeks ago and thought that Hauppauge would sell one but they dont - some retailers incorrectly market the WinTV-HVR-4000 as a dual tuner card, but it isnt, it is a quad mode card that supports DVB-S, DVB-S2, DVB-T or analogue just not all at once.

You may find retailers that sell the Pinnacle PCTV 4000i DVB-S (Pinnacle was aquired by Hauppauge a while ago, so the card is sometimes marketed under their name), but it is an old card & I couldnt find anyone with stock.

Then there was the Blackgold BGT3540 dual DVB-S/DVB-T card but that had quite a few issues and has been withdrawn - there is going to be a higher spec replacement card - the BGT3595 which is supposedly going to be with system builders this month & then in the retail channel 4-6 weeks later, but that wont help you now.

So your choices for now are the single tuner DVB-S/S2 cards such as the Hauppauge WinTV-Nova-S-Plus or WinTV-Nova-HD-S2 (main difference seems to be the support for DVB-S2 on the latter which isnt reqd for Freesat channels at the moment) or the aforementioned WinTV-HVR-4000 - all of which have BDA drivers so will work under WMC. Or you could get a Compro S350 DVB-S card which also works under WMC but is quite a bit cheaper than the Hauppauge cards at just £26! I havent tested this myself but am assuming that the BDA drivers supplied with all of these cards work in twin/multi card/tuner setups.

I ended up buying the Compro card & wasnt really expecting it to be up to much for the money, but it works fine under WMC. I have no problems with BBC HD but havent looked at ITV HD yet as a) the HD content is apparently extremely limited and b) For reasons which escape me, ITV HD is currently only accessible via the red button interactive facility so not sure how this would work under WMC.

Anyway on a different note, I have just been having a look at your system spec - I take it, you were planning on using this as a high end gaming machine as well as a media centre? If not, you should probably be aiming for a lower end passively cooled graphics card (for about £30-40) rather than anything high end that requires a significant amount of fan cooling (like the ATI Radeon HD 5870 in your spec list) as the fan noise will drive you crazy when watching the TV. Also 6GB of RAM - are you sure?!:)
 

GMC79

Distinguished Member
If you are going to be using Windows Media Center (WMC) you will probably want a dual tuner satellite (DVB-S) card which will allow you to watch 1 programme whilst recording another (or record 2 programmes at the same time). A single tuner system would be a bit of a limitation if this is what you are going to be doing most of your TV viewing with.

I was looking for exactly this a couple of weeks ago and thought that Hauppauge would sell one but they dont - some retailers incorrectly market the WinTV-HVR-4000 as a dual tuner card, but it isnt, it is a quad mode card that supports DVB-S, DVB-S2, DVB-T or analogue just not all at once.

You may find retailers that sell the Pinnacle PCTV 4000i DVB-S (Pinnacle was aquired by Hauppauge a while ago, so the card is sometimes marketed under their name), but it is an old card & I couldnt find anyone with stock.

Then there was the Blackgold BGT3540 dual DVB-S/DVB-T card but that had quite a few issues and has been withdrawn - there is going to be a higher spec replacement card - the BGT3595 which is supposedly going to be with system builders this month & then in the retail channel 4-6 weeks later, but that wont help you now.

So your choices for now are the single tuner DVB-S/S2 cards such as the Hauppauge WinTV-Nova-S-Plus or WinTV-Nova-HD-S2 (main difference seems to be the support for DVB-S2 on the latter which isnt reqd for Freesat channels at the moment) or the aforementioned WinTV-HVR-4000 - all of which have BDA drivers so will work under WMC. Or you could get a Compro S350 DVB-S card which also works under WMC but is quite a bit cheaper than the Hauppauge cards at just £26! I havent tested this myself but am assuming that the BDA drivers supplied with all of these cards work in twin/multi card/tuner setups.

I ended up buying the Compro card & wasnt really expecting it to be up to much for the money, but it works fine under WMC. I have no problems with BBC HD but havent looked at ITV HD yet as a) the HD content is apparently extremely limited and b) For reasons which escape me, ITV HD is currently only accessible via the red button interactive facility so not sure how this would work under WMC.

Anyway on a different note, I have just been having a look at your system spec - I take it, you were planning on using this as a high end gaming machine as well as a media centre? If not, you should probably be aiming for a lower end passively cooled graphics card (for about £30-40) rather than anything high end that requires a significant amount of fan cooling (like the ATI Radeon HD 5870 in your spec list) as the fan noise will drive you crazy when watching the TV. Also 6GB of RAM - are you sure?!:)

Dont know about the 5870, but dont dont why people say the fans are loud, my 4870 on auto fans is very very quiet all round. yeah get's loud if u turn it up manually but there's no need to do that. Minor whirs that are not audible when TV is on even low volume.
And as u said must be building a gaming rig.
And will be a great one, enjoy.:D
 

Dr Force

Distinguished Member
Thanks alot guys

You are right it is primarily a games machine but as i have a dedicted Home cinema i thought I would make use of the system:thumbsup:
 

tommygunn

Active Member
Thats a lovely little setup your looking to put together mate you'll have alot of fun with that spec. Anyway......... i have the hauppauge wintv nova s-2 (dvb-s2) it works brilliantly under win 7 media centre although the remote was a pain at first but got it sorted with help from another website. Only thing is its a single tuner card which didn't bother me at first but you really do miss the ability to record and watch another channel when every once in a while two good programs clash. If you can afford it get two of them!!

also to get itv HD you just have to manually scan the transponder with a certain frequency its really easy to do although it does only appear in media center as a 'digital audio service' and doesn't carry any program info via the epg.

6gb triple channel ram= hell yeah. :hiya:
 

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