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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been struggling with my HTPC TV recording for past 5 months or so. At the moment my HTPC is running XP MCE 2005, and it has a TV tuner card that was listed compatible with MCE 2005 (NVTV) and was reported to have a hight quality TV receiver. Prior to that I had ATI AIW 9600 that was also reported to have a high quality TV tuner but was not compatible with MCE (I was running XP pro at that time). Both cards worked, i.e., I could watch and record live TV, however, the reception quality is notably worse compare to what I get by watching TV directly (on the TV). Now, the PC is connected (through GRB port of couse) to a Samsung 31" HDTV. The HDTV already has a HDTV reciver in it, which is why I think I am getting better quality reception when watching TV. The thing that puzzles me is that I don't have a digital cable, as far as I know all TV channels that I am getting are regular analog channels, therefore, HDTV receiver should not make any difference or should it? What TV tuner card do I need to put into my HTPC to get video quality equivalent to what I get through my TV? Do I just need a better quality TV tuner? If so what model exactly do I need? Or do I need an HDTV tuner (like ATI HDTV wonder)?
 

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I'm still a little confused on your setup. What exactly is getting fed into your HTPC? It sounds like you're putting digital into your TV (atsc) but only putting analog (ntsc) into your htpc. If you want HDTV on your htpc, then you need an HD capable tuner card, which I don't believe either of the ones you listed are. The avermedia a180 is a popular HD tuner card, but as far as I know, you would still be required to have the analog card in MCE 2005.


A little more info on what exactly you're putting into your tv would help, but I'm 90% sure that's your problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for your reply. The only source of TV signal in my house is the cable, i.e., regular NTSC signal. I am feeding the same signal into both the TV and the PC and yet, the image quality is quite different.

There's been some developments lately, I actually went ahead and bought AverMedia HDTV card. As I suspected it does not detect and HD signal coming from my cable, so it did not bring any improvement in image quality for the PC TV. At this point I am thinking that the TV tuner in my TV is capable of doubling the resolution or something like that to improve the quality of the image even when the incoming sygnal is not digital. Is there a software or hardware solution for PC to do the same thing?
 

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I don't even have an htpc yet, but since no one else is replying...


It sounds like your problem has to do with your connection from PC to TV (dvi, componenet, s-video, etc). How do you have that connected? I'm not sure what the output capabilities of your video card are, but that could be part of it.


Your question about the tv doubling the resolution....that's probably not the case. Fill us in on how you're getting the signal back out to the television. What cable/connector are you using, and have you set any sort of resolutions via powerstrip or another utility?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm pretty sure the PC2TV connection is not the problem. The PC is connected through a VGA-RGB transcoder and I am getting very good image quality when watching DVDs. The problem has to be the TV receiver or the software. I am curious whether ATI HDTV wonder will give me better image quality, it's supposed to have regular TV tuner as well as HDTV (just like my TV)?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shtirlitz
Thanks for your reply. The only source of TV signal in my house is the cable, i.e., regular NTSC signal. I am feeding the same signal into both the TV and the PC and yet, the image quality is quite different.

There's been some developments lately, I actually went ahead and bought AverMedia HDTV card. As I suspected it does not detect and HD signal coming from my cable, so it did not bring any improvement in image quality for the PC TV. At this point I am thinking that the TV tuner in my TV is capable of doubling the resolution or something like that to improve the quality of the image even when the incoming sygnal is not digital. Is there a software or hardware solution for PC to do the same thing?
Your only other choice is to get digital from Over-The-Air, if available, for digital TV.

If possible, then the HD tuner will give a digital picture.

Or satellite HDTV but no HTPC functions...
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by miketech
Your only other choice is to get digital from Over-The-Air, if available, for digital TV.

If possible, then the HD tuner will give a digital picture.

Or satellite HDTV but no HTPC functions...
However, the question still remains how come the TV is capable of deriving a better quality picture from the same signal? I went through couple of different TV tuner models and different HTPC setups, so, I'm pretty sure this is not some simple bug of a tuner card defect.
 

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What is your video card model, connection and resolution. Is your TV 1080i?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I don't believe that this is a connection issue either since I can watch DVDs and the image quality is top notch. The PC is connected to the RGB input through a VGA2RGB transcoder. The resolution is something in the viscinity of 1200x680p (don't remember the exact numbers, it is a custom resolution that eliminates overscan)
 
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