What's a good cheap USB Tuner? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 10-10-2011, 10:18 AM - Thread Starter
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I want to setup a cheap MythTV setup. I realize the network tuners are cool, but they cost $100+. There's lots of USB tuners on ebay for $25-35. What should I look for that will work with MythTV or can you recomend ones that will work. Ideally I would like a sensitive tuner as I live far from broadcasters. I'm using a nettop so can't use PCI cards.
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post #2 of 12 Old 10-11-2011, 11:42 AM
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Have you tried here?

http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/Digital_Tuner_Cards
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post #3 of 12 Old 10-11-2011, 11:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Yes, went there first, but clearly this was done years ago and these devices don't exist anymore. The brands exist, but but the same exact model numbers. I order a Asus brand usb stick since it claims Debian support so should be able to get drivers on Ubuntu, in theory.
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post #4 of 12 Old 10-12-2011, 11:51 AM
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Check for current USB tuners on Amazon and newegg.

Read/search the User Reviews/Comments for those who've tried the tuner on linux, any flavor.

If a tuner works on one linux distro, it should be capable of working with another distro of the same vintage or later (kernel version), by manually installing firmware and/or v4l-dvb drivers.

http://linuxtv.org/downloads/
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post #5 of 12 Old 10-12-2011, 04:56 PM
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You can't go wrong with the Hauppauge HVR-950Q

http://www.hauppauge.com/site/produc...a_hvr950q.html

The HVR-850 is cheaper, and may also fit your needs. But I don't have any experience with that model.

Edit: The 950Q has QAM support (cable TV). While the 850 doesn't.
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post #6 of 12 Old 10-12-2011, 08:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waterhead View Post

You can't go wrong with the Hauppauge HVR-950Q

http://www.hauppauge.com/site/produc...a_hvr950q.html

The HVR-850 is cheaper, and may also fit your needs. But I don't have any experience with that model.

Edit: The 950Q has QAM support (cable TV). While the 850 doesn't.

(While the 1st didn't because of a hardware limitation -> xc3028) The 2nd and 3rd variants of the 850 do support QAM under Linux. With respect to this device, what you see reported on vendor sites is a reflection of the fact that Hauppauge does not provide Windows drivers exposing that support ... (as such, they create the appearance of a hardware tier; with the 950Q on top ... but such is not the case in reality). There might be some other package difference (remote?) between the models, but I can't remember offhand.

For an encapsulation of supported devices, I believe this remains current (or very near it): http://www.linuxtv.org/wiki/index.php/ATSC_USB_Devices
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post #7 of 12 Old 10-12-2011, 08:39 PM
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In any regard, my vote would be for either of the two models waterhead mentioned.
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post #8 of 12 Old 10-13-2011, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buellwinkle View Post

.... I'm using a nettop so can't use PCI cards.

One of the biggest problems with using a USB tuner is that some USB ports can't really supply good clean 5V power at the current draw that the tuner needs. So you might have issues with that nettop.

Perhaps one of those cables that doubles-up the usb port would help?

Has anyone tried using one with a tuner?
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post #9 of 12 Old 10-23-2011, 05:45 PM - Thread Starter
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I tried using an ASUS My Cinema U3100 Mini USB ATSC PLUS tuner and it was a bust on MythTV. Spent hours trying to load drivers from the ASUS website and source code and compiling it, nothing worked. It appears as though they made a non-Plus model at sometime and that supposed to work well but not the Plus model which is based off a different chipset, the af9035. I've been working with Linux since version 0.9 and know it inside and out, so while I could eventually have figured it out, life is too short. It turns out the Linux driver that comes with it is very specific to the Asus Eeepc netbook and won't work on anything else.

But it does work fine with Win 7, so Media Center will be my choice as it's cheaper for me to pay for Win 7 than buy another solution and hope it works. Also, whilst playing with MythTV I found out that free does not mean no cost, just means you are free to pay a service for a guide and that's $25/year where with Windows the guide is free.
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post #10 of 12 Old 10-23-2011, 07:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac The Knife View Post

One of the biggest problems with using a USB tuner is that some USB ports can't really supply good clean 5V power at the current draw that the tuner needs. So you might have issues with that nettop.

Perhaps one of those cables that doubles-up the usb port would help?

Has anyone tried using one with a tuner?

Interesting that you say that. I have both a 650 and 600 Wonder. It has always been a matter of when not if it would crash. My best friend has one as well and has had the same issues.

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post #11 of 12 Old 10-23-2011, 07:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buellwinkle View Post

Also, whilst playing with MythTV I found out that free does not mean no cost, just means you are free to pay a service for a guide and that's $25/year where with Windows the guide is free.

MythTV will retrieve the OTA guide that is available from ATSC broadcasts. Although this is usually only 24 hours worth of schedule, I find that it is more than enough to schedule recordings.
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post #12 of 12 Old 10-24-2011, 03:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buellwinkle View Post

Also, whilst playing with MythTV I found out that free does not mean no cost, just means you are free to pay a service for a guide and that's $25/year where with Windows the guide is free.

Forgot to mention: You can try the mc2xml or zap2xml apps for loading program data.

http://mc2xml.my3gb.com/

http://zap2xml.awardspace.info/

I have used the zap2xml version in the past, before the OTA data grabbing was working. But I don't know if it still works. I see that to download the latest version of mc2xml requires a >$20 "donation". But it looks to be a one-time donation, as opposed to a yearly fee.

If you're an old Linux hand, this should be fairly simple to set up and get going. I created a cron job to run it daily.
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