Somewhat unrelated and also late (sorry for that), but I came across on one of the deal sites last week what looked like a great deal on the Nero LiquidTV product. They're still selling it for the "discounted" price of $70 shipped, but last week there was a coupon code which allowed you to get it for half of that. You can read more about it here:http://www.nero.com/enu/liquidtv-introduction.html
Basically, the package consists of the following:
- Hauppauge 950Q USB analog, ATSC, and clearQAM tuner
- Windows software that emulates a TiVo
- USB IR receiver
- TiVo remote
- 1 year subscription to TiVo "service"
If you look at Amazon's user reviews of the product, you'll see that it has mostly negative reviews, but those are mostly focused on the software. I'm still interested in seeing if the software is usable, because I already own two HD TiVo boxes and, supposedly, this software/subscription will allow you to use the MultiRoom functionality to play back shows you've recorded on other TiVos in your house on your computer (e.g., Revo) running this software.
As I said, the LiquidTV/TiVo software supposedly has problems, though the last update on their site was from August, so it's possible that many of the complaints from the Amazon reviews have since been fixed. One big negative that I think still exists is that I don't believe the software is capable of dealing with clearQAM channels. IMO, that makes the software mostly (only?) useful/interesting to me for the MultiRoom capability (with my standalone cablecard-equipped TiVos acting as the DVR "servers"), though that would mean that I couldn't watch live TV using this software .
Anyways, even if you're not interested in the TiVo software, this should be a worthwhile purchase (certainly for the $35/each I paid - I bought four of them
, but even at $70), because of the following:
1) Hauppauge 950Q. Even though the TiVo software may not support clearQAM, this included tuner does. So you can use other software (e.g., Windows Media Center, gbpvr, BeyondTV, SageTV) which does support clearQAM. This tuner normally sells for $70 or more (with a different USB IR receiver / remote).
2) USB IR receiver. There was some concern at first, but I'm now reading in the deal thread I've been following that others have gotten this to work with Windows Media Center. So, XBMC should be no problem as well. If you've already got a Logitech Harmony, and was planning on buying a USB IR receiver for $15 or more, you could get this and end up with the Hauppauge 950Q USB tuner for not too much extra.
3) TiVo remote. There's still some confusion as to whether this is just a regular TiVo remote, or something more like a Media Center remote, in terms of the signals it sends, but the latest info seems to be that it can, at the very least, be made useful with Media Center (and, again, that should mean XBMC) by using EventGhost. For those of you that have/had TiVo's, you probably agree with me that the TiVo remote was/is one of the best designed remotes around. My Harmony is certainly more capable, but my wife doesn't like it, and if I can reduce the number of devices connected to my TV, it's possible that the TiVo remote could be good enough as the "primary remote". The TiVo remotes sell for $15-20, so that's another added value.
One thing to be aware of if you want to use this tuner plugged directly into your Revo: The tuner does not have a hardware analog-to-digital converter. If you're going to watch/record analog channels/signals with this tuner, it needs to use the computer's CPU to handle this task, and the Revo's Atom CPU is probably not up to the task. For clearQAM recording, it should be fine, as those channels are already digital, so it just needs to write the data to your hard drive as-is, and the Revo's NVIDIA ION GPU will handle the task of decoding/displaying the high-def channels.
If you want/need to record analog channels, another approach would be to plug the 950Q into a central computer that you use for DVR duties, and just stream the already-recorded shows to your Revos.
Again, sorry for the late notice, but I was unsure about the usefulness of the USB IR receiver / remote with XBMC initially, so I didn't want to steer anyone wrong in what it could/couldn't do from an XBMC perspective. You could also try waiting to see if another discount code resurfaces, but I think they got inundated with orders, so if they haven't sold out of them (which I dont think they have, because it looks like you can still order it for $70), they probably won't offer as good of a deal the next time. But even at $70, it may not be a bad deal.