Time Warner Cable NYC: need TV Card for PC viewing of CNN-type of news on desktop PC - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 2 Old 03-03-2007, 10:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Hello!

I hope i'm posting in the correct forum/area.

i have a new desktop PC running Vista Ultimate and have 2 LCD's now, possibly 1 more added soon. I would like to use a portion of one of them for the viewing of the "basic channels" of Time Warner's cable line up, i.e. channels 1 to 125.

i was told that as i already have 2 cable boxes here (one HD dvr, one standard def, obviously both from time warner cable), plus a cable modem, that i'd be ok with watching the lower 125 channels with a TV card purchased by myself and put on my PC's motherboard. That way, i'd be able to watch the news-y types of channels during the day at my PC desk, and be able to size the window of that TV (as i would likely not wish to be watching a 21" image sitting only 2 feet away from the monitor!).

May I please ask the kind and knowledgeable folks here for suggestions of the best TV "card" to buy for my purpose? the key to remember is that i prefer to not have to get another big cable box to put on my valuable desk space - it's already very cluttered. HD is not needed as i'm not here during the day to watch a movie or anything like that, but good and enjoyable viewing quality/resolution is obviously desired, but i doubt that it would be an issue since i'd scale down that window to much smaller than the LCD it is displaying it on most of the time, unless some important "breaking news" comes on and i want to watch it more intently for an extended period of time. Scaling the window down would have the added benefit of the illusion of better resolution.

FYI: my new PC uses an Asus motherboard P5W DH Deluxe, the EVGA 8800GTS 640mb video card, Crucial 2 X 1gb twin sticks of Ballistix ram, etc. The critical items incl the fact that the motherboard has plenty of slots for the TV card. Right now, i only have a video card plugged in, though the 8800GTS is a double height video card, but since the motherboard is very large, there's plenty of room to put one TV card in.

Thank you very much in advance!
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post #2 of 2 Old 03-07-2007, 04:58 PM
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I've always had good luck with the Hauppauge cards for TV input. There's not really any need for you to get one of the 'PVR' models unless you plan to archive the signal, and it would actually be worse for live viewing, since the signal is always MPEG-2 encoded, meaning that your computer has to decode it to display it on the monitor, even when watching live. It's not really a big deal on new computers, but it is a waste of electricity.

FWIW, why don't you look into a monitor that is also a TV. (Or a TV that is also a monitor)

I've installed a few Sony LCDs a year or two ago that have an analog tuner and do both full screen and PIP TV. It's pretty neat having the little TV window there without the complexity of the TV card, although the TV card is certainly more versatile. IIRC, the PIP window has a few different sizes and several different positions possible. Surely these days someone makes a similar product that does ATSC and QAM, for future proofing and better quality, if the digital simulcast channels are in the clear as they are here.
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