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I have a HDTV digital converter, can I record cable HD programs?

305 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  madpoet
I've got 50" Panny LCD and want to record HDTV. My TiVo doesn't support HDTV, so I'm going the PC PVR route. I've read a zillion posts but can't seem to find the simplest answers(I'm ignorant) so I decided to post.


1. I have a HDTV digital cable box converter, and want to know Can I record HD programs? In reading the below info from the MyHD site, I believe not-

"Q. Can I record cable or satellite HD programs?

A. No. All HDTV card "stores" high-def signals in their raw data form and decodes the signal during playback. Since Cable and Satellite services do not use 8VSB modulation, their signals require dedicated tuners, and once decoded, cannot be routed to the input of the HDTV PC cards. "

2. Are these PVR applications fairly independent of the tuner? So could I buy let's say SnapStream and use basically any tuner with it?

That's all for now.


Todd Berry
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1. Cable uses (at least 99% of cable uses) QAM instead of 8VSB. There is not, today, a PC card on the market that can decode QAM. DVICO Fusion III is slated to do this but it is not on the market yet, and will do nothing useful for channels that are encrypted by the cable company.

2. No, for the most part you should specifically shop for a card and the software that you will use with it when it comes to TV.

Take a deep breath, and wait in line like me for HD TiVo. Todate, HTPC does not come close, to the ease of use of the TiVo.

A side note:

TimeWarner here in Torrance is offering a digital pvr service for a monthly fee of $10 plus $6 for the hardware. When they make it HD compatible ("a planned future enhancement" according to their web site), it will be a sweet deal...
Teeps, I have had several discussions with TWC about their PVR. First, when they say HD compatible, they mean simply that it will be able to display HD images like their current SA-HD box can. It will NOT, in the forseeable future, be able to record them. The limitation is space. HD recording is very intensive on disk space, and they aren't that interested in providing it. So you can wait for that mythical box, but it's not coming any time soon.

Todate, HTPC does not come close, to the ease of use of the TiVo.
Goign to totally disagree with that one as well. Once properly configured, my HTPC is far easier to use than my ReplayTV, which was frankly easier than the TiVo I had for a month. Plus it can do about a million other things. More expensive? Sure. Harder to set up out of the box? Absolutely. But not harder to use now that it's up and running.

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