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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
HD-OTA has finally beaten me.


Living just 15 miles away from the transmitters in downtown Seattle, The ridge blocking my line of site to the transmitters and the dense thicket of 150-foot tall trees that my house is in has eliminated my chances of getting OTA. I've tried all kinds of antennas at all kinds of heights, but I think the only thing that would work for me is a ridiculously tall tower, and I'm not willing to make that kind of investment.


The incredibly frustrating part is that from the window of my office at work, I can look 20 degrees to the right of my computer monitor in Bellevue and see all of the transmission towers directly across Lake Washington from where I sit. They're just standing there. Taunting me.


So I'm not going to get mad, I'm going to get even.


I'd like to rig up a system of an HD card for my PC at work combined with firewire drives, so that I can schedule recordings to take place overnight, then take the drive home with me and watch the shows at home.


I've been reading the forum for a while, but I can't sort out all the pieces that I need. The only hardware that I have right now is DTC-100 and some old PC's laying around.


Do I need a couple of Hi-pix cards and at least 1 good video card to use at home? If I use a Hi-Pix card, what kind of software would I use to schedule the recordings?


Is there a way to hook a firewire drive directly to a DTC-100 so that I could record the shows using a Hi-Pix at work, then play them back directly on the DTC-100?


Is there a good how-to faq somewhere that could walk me thorugh all this?


Thanks for any advice....
 

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You can modify you dtc100 with the 169time board and drive this right into your XP computer and output vid HIpix


dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Dave.


So in that scenario, I'd have the DTC-100 at work to do the reception and recording and use a Hi-Pix at home to do the playack?



Is it possible to do the reverse? I'd like to leave the DTC-100 at home so that I can use it to get HDNet and HBOHD off the satellite. Can the DTC play back from a firewire drive?
 

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Going with the DTC-100 would be pricey as you would

need two D-VHS VCRs, the 169time mod and you would still

have the hassle of making the channel change timers

on the DTC100 match the VCR timers.


===


I know of a couple of people doing just what you say

(using a PC to record at work where they get OTA then

taking the drives home to watch).


HiPix cards are getting hard to find. Telemann has

stopped delivering cards for some reason so it seems

that Digital Connection is pushing the MyHD instead.


The iTech accessDTV card may not be a good solution

because their software tries to prevent you from

playing back recordings on machines other than the

one that actually did the recording.


The MyHD is good card but (unfortunately) doesn't yet

have integration with a program guide provider (like TitanTV)

so you will need to schedule your recordings manually.


To minimize hassles I would suggest you use the

same type of device to record and playback. So maybe

you have a DTC-100 + 169time mode + JVC D-VHS at work

and another JVC D-VHS at home... Or a PC with a HiPix

at work and another PC with HiPix at home.


You can save money on PC drives if you use IDE

(rather than firewire) drive trays.
 

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Depending on you budget and what you already have gives options.


Since you had the dtc100 already, you could put the 169board in it.

Where ever you can get OTA you can bump this to either a DVHS deck or to a disk on an XP computer.


Then at home you could pop in the disk and have your Hipix grab it.


Again, lots of different options. Once the adapter is ready, probably could be even more.


I just love technology.


dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the responses.


PVR, if I use something like a MyHD card, can I get it to create standard .mpg (MPEG 2 or MPEG4) files that I can play back on any computer?


If so, it seems like I could get just one MyHD card for work, have it store programs as MPEG2 or MPEG4, take those files home, then play them back on any standard computer....
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by TiredGuy
HD-OTA has finally beaten me.


Living just 15 miles away from the transmitters in downtown Seattle, The ridge blocking my line of site to the transmitters and the dense thicket of 150-foot tall trees that my house is in has eliminated my chances of getting OTA. I've tried all kinds of antennas at all kinds of heights, but I think the only thing that would work for me is a ridiculously tall tower, and I'm not willing to make that kind of investment.
In such a situation, I would turn the signal meter on the STB, and rotate

the antenna looking for signal peaks. It would mean that you are catching

a "bounce", off another mountain perhaps. A very directional antenna and

a preamp might be able to do it.
 

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Two HDTV cards, two removable IDE hard drive bays both preferably with 120GB hard disks on your two PC's and you should be set. I transport my recording on my drive carrier to the office for demos.


Kei Clark

Digital Connection
 

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Tired - Kei has provided a perfectly good interim solution, but what are you doing to do in the future? Will you always be happy with this solution? I think you may want to consider moving in the near future. Since you seem to be living in an OTA dead zone, your house may drop in value as more people want to receive digital TV via OTA. I say this somewhat tongue-in-cheek but you may want to think about it. I know I would be concerned.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
stephenC mentioned that I may want to move:


with the current adoption rate of HDTV among the general population, I'm not concerned about my house devaluing ;)


In any case, the thing that's going to drive adoption rate up is HDTV on cable, and I used to have ATT Broadband before I dropped it for DirectTV (getting a satellite feed through all the trees was another nightmare, by the way).


So anyway, I'm betting that by the time there's enough uptake on HDTV for the population at large to care, it will be available on cable anyway...


Kei suggested using 2 HDTV cards & an IDE drive:


Kei, sounds great, except I'll probably use Maxtor IDE drives mounted in external cases with firewire. Costs a little more, but the firewire convenience is worth it. Besides, we have a bunch of those kind of firewire drives laying around at work anyway.


Which of the HDTV cards comes with the best software for scheduling OTA recordings? Apparently, there's no generally available software for HDTV cards since there is no DirectX interface for the HDTV cards?
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by TiredGuy
HD-OTA has finally beaten me.


.. the dense thicket of 150-foot tall trees that my house is in has eliminated my chances of getting OTA.
For the wild and crazy ideas.


Get someone to put an antenna attached to the top of the tallest tree. As it grows, so will the antenna.


Shoot an arrow with a wire attached and connect it to your receiver. 200 ft of mini-coax. Or float a balloon and shoot it out when it gets clogged in the tree.


I think the real problem is probably the ridge.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by TiredGuy
HD-OTA has finally beaten me.


Do I need a couple of Hi-pix cards and at least 1 good video card to use at home? If I use a Hi-Pix card, what kind of software would I use to schedule the recordings?

This is exactly what I'm doing. I have a HiPix at home and a HiPix in my parent's attic about 30 miles away. (and along my commute)


You don't need a good video card (unless you want it for DVD playback, gaming, etc.) since the HiPix has its own output.


To schedule, I'm running VNC on the remote machine, and I use the TitanTV integration in the new HiPix/AVSForum software. Works great, actually.


If all you're doing is HD with a tuner card, you don't even need a lot of horsepower. Both of my machines are PIII-500 with ~256MB of ram. The more critical issue is good PCI bus peformance. My home machine was an Athlon 950 on a VIA Apollo Pro board, and that was a nightmare. I replaced it with a PIII-500 on a Asus P2B-LS (440BX board) and life has been good.


I can move HD on Firewire drives, and archive over firewire to DVHS or DDS-3/4 with no problem.


Feel free to PM or email to if you have more questions.


-Z
 
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