Originally Posted by elockett
My first question is, if I use the network option and share all tuners with HTPC clients in other rooms will the responsiveness of the clients be the same as if the tuners were installed locally?
I can't really answer this one as I haven't tried sharing any of my InfiniTV tuners over the network. I do have a pair of the OTA HDHomeRuns and don't notice any lag using those, so I'd expect similar results with the InfiniTV tuners. It's important that you have a suitable gigabit network though as potentially having 8 HD streams over the network is a pretty good amount of traffic.
At present I have a single internal PCIe quad tuner in a PC (to be retired) that's been running over a year and overall, I've been very happy with its responsiveness (scrolling channel guide, changing channels etc.). I want to ensure that if I pursue the network based option I won't loose responsiveness as a result.
Sharing tuners over the network won't affect things like scrolling the channel guide as that's all done locally regardless of where the physical tuner is. Channel changing is the sort of thing where you would conceivably need to worry. For those who have had success getting the network tuner sharing to work, I don't recall any complaints. Most of the complaints have been from people who have just been unable to get the feature to work at all.
Also, how does storage of TV recordings work if I network share all tuners to multiple clients? Can I store all recordings on a single client (my new living HTPC has a lot of storage available-it's RAID protected too), or will recordings have to be stored on each individual client I've assigned tuners to?
Recordings have to be made locally on the PC that is doing the recording as WMC doesn't allow you to select a network drive. There are some tricks that can be done to make a network share look like a local drive, but doing so will introduce even more traffic on your network that will already have the possibility of 8 HD TV streams on it. If your cable provider marks anything as copy once, be aware that those recordings will only play back on the PC they were recorded with. That's what you're calling the client PC - the physical location of the tuners is completely irrelevant (think of the shared tuners as if they were USB or locally installed PCIe tuners).
IMHO, your situation would be better served by doing all your recording on the 1 central PC where the tuners are physically located and using Media Center Extenders (XBOX or the Echo when it ships) on the various TV's in your house. This would give you 1 central place to setup your recordings and would take care of any recording conflicts automatically. If you farm out a tuner or 2 to various PC's throughout the house, you'll have to manually take care of any recording conflicts. If all you really care about is watching Live TV, then you may not be concerned about this, but it's something to consider.