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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In various threads ive read some people say the Fusion III can "decode" (i dunno if thats the proper term) QAM. What does this mean? The card can display DTV from cable? Would it be only the channels we couldve gotten OTA, only now from a cable, or does it mean itll be all channels in digital? Im interestd in getting Discovery HD on my pc and am wondering if the fusion3 can do it?
 

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I'm no expert, but me thinks you are confusing two things:


Encoding - the method of turning an Analog or Digital stream into a compressed Digital stream


Modulation - the method of transmitting that stream within a narrow range of frequencies/etc...


Encodings are things like MPEG-2, MP3, DIVX, WindowsMedia9


Modulations are things like AM, FM, 8VSB (used for over-the-air HDTV), QAM64/QAM256 (used by many Cable companies such as Comcast to carry digital transmissions)


That help?
 

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OK, now that we've got the terms down, here's the way I understand it as to the differences between "current" HDTV-capable tuners (I.E. MyHD 120, Fusion II, HiPix, AccessDTV, etc.), and "futer", or QAM-capable ones:


The "current" HDTV PC tuners can ONLY accept 8VSB signals. This means that, right now, the ONLY way that you can view HD from your computer or HTPC is if you plug an antenna into the HDTV card.


The "future" HDTV PC tuner cards will be able to accept BOTH 8VSB over-the-air (antenna) stuff, AND, be able to accept a connection from your wall or cable box directly to tune HD cable (or even satellite?).


So, I guess the answer to your basic question, is "yes."
 

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The only problem is that all the cable companies, to my knowledge, also digitally encrypt the datastream.


So, unless they provide the ability to accept a "smart card" or some other way of decoding the signal, you'll still be out of luck.
 

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> The only problem is that all the cable companies, to my knowledge, also digitally encrypt the datastream.


This is FUD. Read the HDTV Reception Forum for a comprehensive understanding of this issue.


Encryption of so-called Conditional Access programming may make such QAM-capable cards no better than the 8VSB OTA cards. Indeed, many cable companies only carry a subset of the OTA-receivable stations. That, I fear, is the big problem with relying on Cable for non-ConditionalAccess stations.


My Bay Area Comcast Cable, for instance, doesn't carry CBS (read about owned-and-operated CBS affiliates) nor even FOX (even though FOX is only 480p - still an improvement). One small benefit, however, is that Comcast currently doesn't even encrypt their ConditionalAccess channels although this is certainly temporary.


> So, unless they provide the ability to accept a "smart card"...


Don't count on it... The world of the PC is simply too vulnerable to "attack" making perfect digital copies of programming all too easy. Perhaps Microsoft will close the holes someday what with all their DRM efforts, but it will take a lot of convincing - of Hollywood that is...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Very interesting, so it will be like digital cable on PC if the dta isnt encrypted? How do we find out if our provider is using encrypted signals? Im in central florida and my provider is brighthouse (formerly TW i believe). Thanks guys.
 
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