Linked by Eugenia Loli on Thu 18th Jan 2007 00:31 UTC, submitted by Governa
Multimedia, AV "I found that any Firewire-equipped Mac can be made into an HD-PVR for unencrypted content at the expense of an appropriate firewire cable. Apple even provides the necessary capture software that you need, provided that you know where to look." More here.
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by elzurawka on Thu 18th Jan 2007 04:07 UTC
Member since:

Anyone know if a cable like this could be setup to work with MythTV?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Linux
by butters on Thu 18th Jan 2007 04:45 UTC in reply to "Linux"
butters Member since:

MythTV supports firewire input and output (for changing the channels) through standard OSS libraries. There are many tutorials on the web. You need a cable box that provides a firewire output, such as the Motorola DCT-6200. By US law, cable providers are required to provide unencrypted content for "must-carry" networks through the firewire output if so-equipped. That means the big broadcast networks (CBS, ABC, NBC, and FOX), even in HD. However, no basic or premium cable channels come through the firewire. For that you need to use a capture card.

Although PC-based DVR systems are capable of providing a decent feature-set when combined with legitimate digital cable subscriptions, there is still one area where the lack of a CableCard solution for the PC leaves a big hole in the functionality compared to dedicated PVR appliances.

There is no simple and elegant way of using dual-input capture cards with digital cable. This means that you cannot simply build a MythTV box that lets you watch one digital cable channel while recording another. The only workaround is to acquire a second set-top box from the cable company, a service that usually costs an extra $20 per month (or more).

Sadly, the best option for PC DVRs (WinMCE included) is still basic analog cable (if available). Until PCs have CableCard slots in the front, or until the cable providers phase-in downloadable security modules, the only full-featured DVR solution for digital cable will be dedicated appliances like Tivo.

Edited 2007-01-18 04:49

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Linux
by backdoc on Thu 18th Jan 2007 16:40 UTC in reply to "RE: Linux"
backdoc Member since:

I bought a Dish DVR625 this month. For years, I've been saying that I was going to build a Myth box. Some of the reasons for choosing a "dedicated appliance" were for the reasons you stated (dual tuner).

But, I also considered these Pros:

o Cost
o Familiarity for family (remote controls and menus)
o Tight integration to system means easier recording
o No extra box
o Support
o Built-In streaming to other TV's

I really REALLY wanted to build a Myth box. But, considering everything, I just couldn't justify it.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Linux
by aesiamun on Thu 18th Jan 2007 05:06 UTC
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Even Tivo isn't good for digital cable because it requires a Cable Card and services like TimeWarner don't allow you the full subset of capabilities using the cable card. Cable Card 1.0 is neutered because of it being only one way and you won't be able to get anything from the switched digital network that TW is using in most high populated areas and you'll never get ppv, ondemand, or other interactive features until at least CableCard v2.0

Reply Score: 1

by TheDiver on Thu 18th Jan 2007 10:11 UTC
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'Sadly, the best option for PC DVRs is still basic analog cable (if available)'

No you can just use FireDTV from i have 2 of them connected to my Microsoft MCE.

I have DVB-C on my cable, and the FireDTC driver emulates DVB-T that MCE support. Now i have top quality digital TV, EVEN all the encrypted channels i pay for.

So at least here in Europe there is no need for analog TV anymore.

Reply Score: 1

two smartcards?
by benz on Thu 18th Jan 2007 11:49 UTC
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Diver, you need two smartcards and two cam's for your solution, do you? I am not quite sure what you mean with emulating DVB-T support...

Reply Score: 1

RE: two smartcards?
by sphere on Thu 18th Jan 2007 14:31 UTC in reply to "two smartcards?"
sphere Member since:

> Diver, you need two smartcards and two cam's for your solution, do you?

In general: yes. There is a CI CAM called 'Diablo Cam Wireless', but its legality is questionable.

> I am not quite sure what you mean with emulating DVB-T support...

Windows MCE currently only supports Analog TV, ATSC and DVB-T(errestrial). In Europe, PCI/FireWire/USB devices for the two other DVB flavours, C(able) and S(atellite) are available as well, but not natively supported by MCE. In order to get it working, at least one manuafacturer (TechnoTrend) provides a BDA driver along with a tool called DvbTMapper that makes it possible to map cable channels/satellite transponders to DVB-T frequencies so that MCE can find them.

Reply Score: 1

use iMac 24" as a TV screen?
by Darkelve on Thu 18th Jan 2007 12:08 UTC
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I was wondering how feasible it is to use an iMac 24" and have it double as a TV screen, which could save both space and money. Possibly in combination with some other hardware. My location: Europe (Belgium). Internet subscription: Telenet (digital cable).

Some questions:
- Comfortable for TV viewing?
- Is the screen quality good enough, Is the screen big enough for TV viewing
- Will I be able to receive all channels, including channels from Cable TV?
- Is it easy to record to hard disk? To burn movie clips (e.g. compilation) to DVD?
- What about sound quality?

Reply Score: 1

RE: use iMac 24" as a TV screen?
by Riba on Thu 18th Jan 2007 12:31 UTC in reply to "use iMac 24" as a TV screen?"
Riba Member since:

Is the screen big enough is a matter of personal preference and feeling, not to mention the space it is in. As for the quality, I believe it is better than cheaper LCD TV sets.
I suggest you check one of the Elgato EyeTV boxes, they have a range of models that accept various TV inputs. It includes excellent EyeTV software, is capable of recording to a HD, and paired with the Apple remote this should be a very capable solution.
I believe that Toast provides a simple way to recored DVD's from EyeTV recorded content, but I don't have first-hand experience with it.
Check the details on elgato site at

Reply Score: 2

RE: two smartcards?
by TheDiver on Thu 18th Jan 2007 14:44 UTC
Member since:

There is another provider other than TechnoTrend,

As i said i have 2 FireDTV boxes with 2 smartcards, and now all my channels a digital quality.

I even have a HDTV test channel, they send in 1920*1080 (i or p no clue :-)

Works perfectly together with Windows Mediacenter.

I use BladeRunnerPro together with XMLtv to get program listings.

Reply Score: 1