Is a tv tuner card worth it without a cable card - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 09:22 AM - Thread Starter
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 24,104
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 192 Post(s)
Liked: 999
I have comcast.

I already pay for two cablecards in my HDTV tivo.

Recently it started blinking out to a blue screen.

I think it's days are coming to and end.

I don't want to rent another stupid card from my cable company. I have comcast.

Does a TV card for PC work without a cable card?

How many have comcast and can tell me which channels are "free" and work without the cable card ?

-

"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 10:40 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Postmoderndesign's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 1,113
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 31 Post(s)
Liked: 32
You are asking about a quam tuner. I don't have any cable thus no quam. I have read that most of what is available on quam is available for free over the air. However, the quality of OTA broadcast TV with an antenna can be noticably better than cable.
Postmoderndesign is offline  
post #3 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 10:53 AM
AVS Special Member
 
whiteboy714's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 4,602
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Normally you will get your locals hopefully in HD and maybe basic cable in HD. Get yourself a cablecard tuner like the prime or the ceton. You won't regret it.
whiteboy714 is offline  
post #4 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 11:25 AM
AVS Special Member
 
jeffkro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2,053
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by whiteboy714 View Post

Normally you will get your locals hopefully in HD and maybe basic cable in HD. Get yourself a cablecard tuner like the prime or the ceton. You won't regret it.

Or cut the cord, actually I own stock in Comcast and Verizon so don't cut the cord.
jeffkro is offline  
post #5 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 11:32 AM
Advanced Member
 
Ruiner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 535
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 18
Go to antennaweb.org and see what's there for you.
OTA cards are cheap, so as long as you don't need a big-ass antenna it's easy to try out.
Ruiner is offline  
post #6 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 03:15 PM - Thread Starter
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 24,104
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 192 Post(s)
Liked: 999
I have cable in my home. I just not sure if I want to spend extra for a cable card for my pc.

If I really need this or not.

I do tons of torrents and netflix as it is. Plus I have DVR.

-

"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #7 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 03:16 PM - Thread Starter
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 24,104
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 192 Post(s)
Liked: 999
I can get OTA but I don't feel like climbing up to put an antenna up.

-

"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #8 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 05:59 PM
Member
 
josrq's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Simpsonville, SC
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Mfusick,
You can connect an HDTV (or digital TV) to the raw cable to see what channels are available. If you like what is available you could get an Avermedia Duet dual channel PCIe tuner or perhaps a USB tuner like the Hauppauge 950q to receive the unencrypted channels you can see via the raw cable. I have used the 950, no Q, for OTA and it worked well. I used the Duet for OTA and then for Clear QAM from Charter and liked it better. But, I think either will work.
Good Luck!

Edit: It is kind of nice to have an antenna for those times when the cable goes out. I have a homemade coat hanger antenna in the attic that work pretty well.
josrq is offline  
post #9 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 06:50 PM
Senior Member
 
ghostlobster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 234
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
The big question is "What do you want to watch/record?" For me, we rarely watch anything on network tv, and I refuse to watch anything in "standard def" so OTA and QAM don't offer me much. I do have a dual tuner HDHomeRun for QAM that works brilliantly for that and for OTA. If OTA/QAM does it for you, you cannot go wrong with the HDHomerun (not Prime). Network available to all PCs (great for watching golf on Sunday afternoons out on the porch with a cigar and a laptop) and just plain solid.
The workhorses of my setup, however, are my HD-PVRs. I've got 2 of them connected to 2 TWC cable boxes delivering blissful HD content (live or recorded) with absolutely zero DRM concerns. The initial setup is a bit tedious, but once you get through it, it is amazing. I also recommend using DVBLogic's WMC solution rather than the native Hauppauge WMC solution. It,s much more stable, allows for tuner sharing amongst PCs, and, most important, supports multiple tuners per PC.

Ray
===Ghostlobster===
ghostlobster is offline  
post #10 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 07:01 PM
Senior Member
 
Quaker2001's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostlobster View Post

The big question is "What do you want to watch/record?" For me, we rarely watch anything on network tv, and I refuse to watch anything in "standard def" so OTA and QAM don't offer me much. I do have a dual tuner HDHomeRun for QAM that works brilliantly for that and for OTA. If OTA/QAM does it for you, you cannot go wrong with the HDHomerun (not Prime). Network available to all PCs (great for watching golf on Sunday afternoons out on the porch with a cigar and a laptop) and just plain solid.
The workhorses of my setup, however, are my HD-PVRs. I've got 2 of them connected to 2 TWC cable boxes delivering blissful HD content (live or recorded) with absolutely zero DRM concerns. The initial setup is a bit tedious, but once you get through it, it is amazing. I also recommend using DVBLogic's WMC solution rather than the native Hauppauge WMC solution. It,s much more stable, allows for tuner sharing amongst PCs, and, most important, supports multiple tuners per PC.

Are those HD PVRs both connected to the same computer or is it 2 separate computers? I've been thinking about adding a 2nd HD PVR (as opposed to a CableCard Tuner since I'm stuck with Time Warner), but does that work with 2 on the same system or no?

This is television. It has nothing to do with people, it's to do with ratings! For fifty years, we've told them what to eat, what to drink, what to wear. So what do we do? We give 'em what they want!
Quaker2001 is offline  
post #11 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 07:06 PM
Senior Member
 
ghostlobster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 234
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quaker2001 View Post


Are those HD PVRs both connected to the same computer or is it 2 separate computers? I've been thinking about adding a 2nd HD PVR (as opposed to a CableCard Tuner since I'm stuck with Time Warner), but does that work with 2 on the same system or no?

Probably not if you use Hauppauge's native WMC solution. I use DVBlogic's DVBLink for the HD-PVR and both my HDPVRs are connected to the same box, no issues at all. Also, as stated, I share both of those HDPVR's to 3 other client WMC PCs across my network using DVBLogic's Server Network Pack. Just plain awesomeness! And yes, TWC drove me to this due to their horrible DRM policies.

Ray
===Ghostlobster===
ghostlobster is offline  
post #12 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 08:39 PM
AVS Special Member
 
jeffkro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2,053
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostlobster View Post


Probably not if you use Hauppauge's native WMC solution. I use DVBlogic's DVBLink for the HD-PVR and both my HDPVRs are connected to the same box, no issues at all. Also, as stated, I share both of those HDPVR's to 3 other client WMC PCs across my network using DVBLogic's Server Network Pack. Just plain awesomeness! And yes, TWC drove me to this due to their horrible DRM policies.

Yup, the whole reason I dropped cable and went htpc OTA was to make my dvr recordings portable. So once again DRM cost the industry a customer.
jeffkro is offline  
post #13 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 08:46 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
assassin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 12,961
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
Liked: 241
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostlobster View Post

Probably not if you use Hauppauge's native WMC solution. I use DVBlogic's DVBLink for the HD-PVR and both my HDPVRs are connected to the same box, no issues at all. Also, as stated, I share both of those HDPVR's to 3 other client WMC PCs across my network using DVBLogic's Server Network Pack. Just plain awesomeness! And yes, TWC drove me to this due to their horrible DRM policies.

What's the cost of using DVBink?
assassin is offline  
post #14 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 10:41 PM
AVS Special Member
 
whiteboy714's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 4,602
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

I have cable in my home. I just not sure if I want to spend extra for a cable card for my pc.

If I really need this or not.

I do tons of torrents and netflix as it is. Plus I have DVR.

Oh well you acted like you wanted to ditch the dvr.
whiteboy714 is offline  
post #15 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 07:00 AM - Thread Starter
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 24,104
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 192 Post(s)
Liked: 999
Quote:
Originally Posted by whiteboy714 View Post

Oh well you acted like you wanted to ditch the dvr.

wife likes DVR.

-

"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #16 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 08:01 AM
AVS Special Member
 
bryansj's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 6,414
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 97 Post(s)
Liked: 196
Simply hook up the coax directly to a TV in your house that has a built in tuner. The channels that show up there (Clear QAM) will be available on a QAM compatible TV tuner without a cable card.

bryansj is offline  
post #17 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 08:03 AM
Senior Member
 
ghostlobster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 234
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post


What's the cost of using DVBink?

I don't remember the total price, but it was something like $25 for the HDPVR component and $20 for the network pack. Sorry for not mentioning that it was not free! However, aside from AnyDVD HD, I consider this to be the best money I've spent on my HTPC.

Ray
===Ghostlobster===
ghostlobster is offline  
post #18 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 10:00 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Teeps's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Torrance,Cal. 90503
Posts: 1,045
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

Does a TV card for PC work without a cable card?

Yes, I have been using MyHD cards since they were first available, for OTA.

The analog tuner leaves much to be desired by either OTA or cable.

The QAM tuner works well but you really have to fish to find the stations.
The QAM tuner does not work with encrypted signals.

If your wife is happy with TiVo; you might consider a TiVo Elite.
4 tuners, one cable card.

Cheers, Tp

"No lawsuit ever fixed a moron."
Teeps is online now  
post #19 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 10:37 AM - Thread Starter
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 24,104
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 192 Post(s)
Liked: 999
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teeps View Post

Yes, I have been using MyHD cards since they were first available, for OTA.

The analog tuner leaves much to be desired by either OTA or cable.

The QAM tuner works well but you really have to fish to find the stations.
The QAM tuner does not work with encrypted signals.

If your wife is happy with TiVo; you might consider a TiVo Elite.
4 tuners, one cable card.

4 tuners and 1 cable card sounds nice.

-

"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #20 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 10:54 AM
AVS Special Member
 
bryansj's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 6,414
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 97 Post(s)
Liked: 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

4 tuners and 1 cable card sounds nice.

Sounds exactly like a Ceton. It is nice. Four tuners and one cable card.

bryansj is offline  
post #21 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 01:45 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Teeps's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Torrance,Cal. 90503
Posts: 1,045
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

Sounds exactly like a Ceton. It is nice. Four tuners and one cable card.


Yes; but without the problems, read about here.

TiVo is not nirvana either, as it has other issues and requirements.

I was close to doing a sandy bridge computer upgrade based on Assassin's guide; with intent of buying a Ceton card. But after learning that the Ceton has the same restrictions with regard to copy protected material, as TiVo.
It was a no brainer... TiVo it is for me.

Cheers, Tp

"No lawsuit ever fixed a moron."
Teeps is online now  
post #22 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 04:05 PM
AVS Special Member
 
bryansj's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 6,414
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 97 Post(s)
Liked: 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teeps View Post

Yes; but without the problems, read about here.

TiVo is not nirvana either, as it has other issues and requirements.

I was close to doing a sandy bridge computer upgrade based on Assassin's guide; with intent of buying a Ceton card. But after learning that the Ceton has the same restrictions with regard to copy protected material, as TiVo.
It was a no brainer... TiVo it is for me.

Tell that to my Ceton. It has been trouble free for the six months that I've owned it. I guess I should post more often how it is working just fine to help outweigh the few people that have issues with theirs. Also, most of the issues seem to be from the newer USB version.

I also don't think I could bring myself to pay a fee for Tivo when WMC is free.

bryansj is offline  
post #23 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 05:18 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Teeps's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Torrance,Cal. 90503
Posts: 1,045
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

Tell that to my Ceton. It has been trouble free for the six months that I've owned it.

Come back after 5 years of 24/7 operation trouble free and we'll talk about it then.

It's all about what makes a person happy; if you're happy with your setup; that's all that matters.

Cheers, Tp

"No lawsuit ever fixed a moron."
Teeps is online now  
post #24 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 09:51 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Mntneer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Martinsburg, WV
Posts: 2,739
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Where I'm at you basically have no choice but to get a cable card tuner. Like the Ceton or HDHomerun Prime.

They moved all channels to digital, and only have a fraction of their channels (both SD and HD) in ClearQAM. For example, Comedy Central in SD is ClearQAM, in HD it's not. But SyFy is ClearQAM in both HD and SD. Plus, the channel mapping is a nightmare in WMC.

So I went with a HDHomerun Prime, and so far, *knocking on wood*, have had good luck.
Mntneer is offline  
post #25 of 53 Old 02-20-2012, 05:11 AM
AVS Special Member
 
captain_video's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Ellicott City, MD
Posts: 3,645
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 117 Post(s)
Liked: 158
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teeps View Post

Yes; but without the problems, read about here.

What problems? I've had my InfiniTV 4 since August 2010 and it has performed beautifully with no problems whatsoever.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teeps View Post

TiVo is not nirvana either, as it has other issues and requirements.

Yeah, like having to pay a ridiculous fee just to record with it and the fact that it's basically a doorstop if you don't want to pay for the service. You could sell it on ebay, but unless you bought lifetime service for it you might as well give it to Goodwill and take the tax break. Did I mention that Tivo's customer service absolutely sucks?

Quote:


I was close to doing a sandy bridge computer upgrade based on Assassin's guide; with intent of buying a Ceton card. But after learning that the Ceton has the same restrictions with regard to copy protected material, as TiVo.
It was a no brainer... TiVo it is for me.

Blame your provider for the copy once flag. I'm on FIOS and have no such restrictions.

FWI, I was a loyal Tivo owner and supporter for well over 10 years. Once I got my InfiniTV 4, I was cured of the Tivo dependency once and for all. Don't get me wrong, I think Tivos are great DVRs. The thing is, I want something more than just a DVR and Tivo just doesn't do it for me anymore. All of the bells and whistles Tivo has added over the years offer zero incentive for me to want a new one. An HTPC can do everything a Tivo can do and do it better, with but very few exceptions. You can build a pretty good HTPC with an InfiniTV 4 tuner for what they're charging for the new 4-tuner Tivo Elite with lifetime service. The one huge caveat is that the Elite doesn't do OTA.
captain_video is offline  
post #26 of 53 Old 02-20-2012, 08:16 AM - Thread Starter
AVS Addicted Member
 
Mfusick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Western MA
Posts: 24,104
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 192 Post(s)
Liked: 999
Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

Sounds exactly like a Ceton. It is nice. Four tuners and one cable card.

I really only need 1 tuner

-

"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
Mfusick is offline  
post #27 of 53 Old 02-20-2012, 08:41 AM
AVS Special Member
 
whiteboy714's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 4,602
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

I really only need 1 tuner

You can get one from hauppage for right around $100 with 2 tuners.
http://www.amazon.com/Hauppauge-WinT...9&sr=8-1-spell
whiteboy714 is offline  
post #28 of 53 Old 02-20-2012, 10:40 AM
AVS Special Member
 
MrBobb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 3,318
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 46 Post(s)
Liked: 28
Whatever tuner u get, just make sure it does QAM, and u will get all the local channels without additional hardware.
MrBobb is offline  
post #29 of 53 Old 02-20-2012, 11:00 AM
AVS Special Member
 
bryansj's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 6,414
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 97 Post(s)
Liked: 196
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

I really only need 1 tuner

So you built a super computer for your HTPC with an i7, 16GB RAM, 2x HD6870 video cards, SSD, 11 HDDs, 1000W PS, 20 fans, and you only want one tuner?

Go to Amazon right now and order the Ceton 4 tuner for $200. It does ClearQAM as well as cablecard.

bryansj is offline  
post #30 of 53 Old 02-20-2012, 11:12 AM
AVS Special Member
 
captain_video's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Ellicott City, MD
Posts: 3,645
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 117 Post(s)
Liked: 158
Ceton just announced a price drop on both the InfiniTV 4 PCI-E and USB versions. The current price through all normal vendors is $199. As an added bonus, if you are lucky enough to be on their mailing list, you can order two InfiniTV 4's from Amazon and get the 2nd one for only $169, for a total cost of $368. You can get one of each type or two of the same model and still get the deal.

I don't know if this deal is open to anyone of if you have to access the deal via the link provided in the e-mail they sent out. I'm tempted to jump on it but every time I've made a purchase based on a price drop they dropped the price again within a few months. Maybe I should just wait until they start giving them away.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

So you built a super computer for your HTPC with an i7, 16GB RAM, 2x HD6870 video cards, SSD, 11 HDDs, 1000W PS, 20 fans, and you only want one tuner?

Go to Amazon right now and order the Ceton 4 tuner for $200. It does ClearQAM as well as cablecard.

That build is complete overkill for an HTPC. I can only assume it's meant to be a gaming rig with HTPC usage thrown in as an afterthought.
captain_video is offline  
Reply Home Theater Computers

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off