Originally Posted by gastrof
As a side question, since I am interested in learning more about computers used as DVRs, is there any way to record something on a computer DVR when the cable system has the channel/program stamped as "do not record" or "one copy only" and so forth?
With the HDMI-to-composite/s-video converters I use with my Magnavox recorders, such "stamps" are filtered out, so I can record whatever I like and even burn to DVD.
Anything along those lines doable with a computer DVR that's using a cable card (or just a QAM tuner)?
A computer DVR works the same as a Tivo or Cable/Sat DVR. It respects the copy protection. "Copy Once" can be recorded, "Copy Never" can't. You'd usually only see the latter on a high priced PPV event like a $100 boxing match or something like that. Premium channels are usually "Copy Once", hence recordable. Can you then copy that recording to a DVD? No, because you only get one copy. If it's marked "Copy Freely", then you can. Clear QAM has no copy protection, so you can make as many copies as you want.
Sounds like you have requirements that most of us don't have. I generally record, watch, delete. I never buy PPV, and I almost never archive to DVD anymore. Anything I want to keep, I simply don't delete. I have thousands of recordings on my hard drives at my finger tips with cover art, synopses, etc. No sorting through stacks and stacks of DVDs to find something. And 99% of my recordings are HD.
If you have a lot of protected content and are satisfied with SD DVDs and single tuners, you should probably stick with what you have.