ATI TV-Wonder

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Warning.png Warning: This page has been locked and archived on September 27, 2010. The official documentation for this card can be found at ATI/AMD_TV-Wonder. This page remains as there is significant information herein not included in the official documentation. Please migrate any such information to the proper location.

Capture Card Information
Vendors Website
Input Formats not applicable
Support Status MythTV works with this card. However the card does not have a hardware encoder, so watching/recording TV will be CPU intensive. For example encoding at 480x480 mpeg-4 takes 40% CPU on a Pentium 4 @ 2.4GHz. Motion vectors may increase that to 60%.
Driver V4L bttv driver
Sound Driver btaudio or snd-bt87x
Chipset not applicable


Single-tuner PCI card with no hardware encoder.

ATI TV-Wonder Pro comes with a nice remote that works using RF to a USB base that has drivers in the current Linux Kernel.

Issues and Problems

When you first install this card the colour & contrast is way off. The colour, hue & contrast options can be edited through MythWeb or in the channel table of mythconverg database in MySQL.

Starting values for contrast and colour are 25000, but you will need to do a lot of tweaking. Note, this method affects all cards in your mythbacked server.

To change the settings run the MySQL client:

> mysql -u root mythconverg

Then at the prompt type:

> update channel set contrast=18000,brightness=30000,colour=32000,hue=32768;

Press Enter and then Ctrl-D to exit the MySQL client.

If you see dark red and green images with the TV Wonder Pro, type this at the prompt instead, and then adjust based on the information given below:

> update channel set contrast=128,brightness=128,colour=128,hue=128;

There are several image issues to be aware of with the TV Wonder Pro. First, Wonder Pro uses the cx8800 driver, not the bttv driver like the TV Wonder. The image values for the cx8800 driver only range from 0-255, not 0-65535 like MythTV assumes it does. The result is that if you set a value higher than 255 in MythTV, the actual value rolls over like an odometer and starts back at zero. For example, if you set hue to 256 in MythTV, the actual hue value is set to 0. If you set it to 257, the actual value is set to 1. 258 sets the actual value to 2, and so on. The net result is that the default value of 32768 effectively sets the hue, colour, brightness, and contrast all to zero. Using a value of 128 instead will give you the correct 50% hue, colour, brightness, and contrast defaults.

The second image issue to be aware of is that with Linux kernels prior to 2.6.13, you need to have the hue set to 0 or 255 in order to look correct. Linux kernels 2.6.13 and later use the hue value correctly.

Associated Software

Nothing yet ..

Installation guides

I wrote this guide for the ATI TV-Wonder-Pro using Dapper, which, to my knowledge, does not use the same driver as the TV-Wonder. Please note my sources at the bottom of the guide; if something I do doesn't work for you, you might want to check one of those. Even though I use Dapper, quite a bit of the information could be used for other distros as well.


Nothing yet ...

User Experiences

If you have this card, speak up! This is a good place to note your experiences - ease of install, what you like, what's not to like, etc.

This information regards the TV-Wonder-Pro card, which does not seem to use the bttv driver. Using Dapper, in order to get this card to work, I had to do the following:

cd /etc/modprobe.d

echo "options cx88xx card=4 tuner=44" > cx88xx

modprobe -r cx8800

modprobe cx8800

This should get both audio and video working.

The video is still a bit pale. When I figure out how to repair this, I'll post it here. -atrus123

Under Mythbuntu 8.04, the system seems to "forget" that the card is there after a couple of reboots. If you have a second card, the MythTV backend setup will start using that card instead. For example, I have the ATI TV-Wonder (TV0) and the HD-5500 (TV1). After a couple of reboots, both TV0 and TV1 refers to the HD-5500. The ATI card will not be listed when trying to add re-add it (system only finds the HD-5500 for all card types). When I've found a solution to this problem, I will post it here. -UltramaticOrange

Because of colour issues and the availability of other cards in this price range I cannot recommend this card. - Matt Clare

Shane T

I followed the instructions above for my TV-Wonder Pro card and it doesn't work. No errors, just doesn't allow any programs to user the card. I have a Dell XPS 420 with an ATI Radeon HD 3650 and ATI TV-Wonder Pro. Haven't given up yet since I'm sure it's got to be a user issue.