Your hardware recommendations
I've been looking through the Ubuntu threads as well as searching on the internet and I really don't see any good side by side comparisons of tuner cards on the market. Hauppauge tends to be the standard but what few reviews I've found indicate their image quality isn't as good as some of the other boards available. In what I've found during my research I'm going to have to replace my tuner, ir, and remote so I thought I'd see just how many of the good folks here if you would be kind enough to offer your recommendations. I've outlined my current usage below but if I'm going to spend money on hardware I think I'd like to have 2 tuners (dual or individual). One would go to the cable box and one would go to an analog cable connection. Having an option for HD would be nice but not required.
I'm currently running Windows XP (MCE 2004) utilizing a Emuzed Maui III-G PVR (Gateway Machine) Tuner card and an old style MCE Remote - Ovation OVU400002/00 USB Remote Control Receiver/IR Transmitter (Windows Identifies as eHome Infrared Transceiver / eHome Remote Consumer Controls) with Cox Cable service (Tulsa OK - General Instrument DCT-2244). This set up works just fine for regular viewing and general recording but I'm sick of the bugs and limitations iin MCE2004. I really don't like Windows Vista and from what I've seen in Ubuntu 7.10 it is clean, nice, and responsive so I'd like to cut over to it with MythTV. There are still some windows apps that I will have to deal with but I can to that in a regular XP vm.
CPU: 3.2Ghz P4
Video Card: ATI Radeon 9600 Series
HD1: 500GB SATA (OS, Apps, Data)
HD2: 500gb SATA (Recordings Etc)
Tuners: Emuzed Maui III-G
Re: Your hardware recommendations
You could just test and compare. The reviews are all different because all the systems are different. For you to know which one you want, you really have to do research and then take a leap and just try one out. If you don't like it, you can return it and get a different one
You said you were using one to tune cable. If you look at some of the HDTV tuning cars, some are capable of QAM tuning (you can get unencrypted HD channels broadcast from the cable company. mostly the local channels though) That could be an option.
If you go with HDTV, you might consider upgrading your video card (possibly to an nvidia, better linux support) to be able to handle the extra load that HD decoding uses. But there is a lot better TV picture quality there and you don't have to worry as much. Many of the HD cards also have an analog tuner on them. Again, just try different cards out to see how well they work on your system.
(sorry if it seems like i am rambling)
P4 HT 3.2 GHz
1024 MB RAM
Nvidia 7600 GS 512MB RAM
3x160 GB HDD:
- 2 SATA2
- 1 IDE
Connected to a Samsung HDTV via VGA (picture quality is still excellent for just 720p res. :D)
Re: Your hardware recommendations
I think what you are most concerned about is capturing capabilities. Without hesitation, I'd give you the following recommendations.
OTA: PVR-500. Definitely.
HDTV: PCHDTV-5500 (PCI card) or HDHomeRun (network). Neither are perfect.
Linux is pretty compatible with all basic hardware anymore, but MythTV really likes it if you can use the Nvidia proprietary drivers. That means your best bet is to use a 5000 or 6000 series card. It doesn't have to be high-end- even a midgrade one built into the mobo is just fine. So I'm saying you should dump the ATI card once you get it all working.