Tuner Card

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The basic important piece of non-standard PC hardware in a Myth Box is a TV Tuner Card. This is the board that hooks up to your cable or antenna and decodes and captures the video signal from the channel you want to record.

Tuner Cards currently (Aug 04) come in several types:

  • Analog framebuffer cards

These cards are usually based on a chipset like the Bt848/878 or Conexant cx38882, and decode broadcast NTSC, PAL, or Secam television.

  • Analog Hardware-MPEG cards

These cards, currently the Hauppauge PVR-250 and Hauppauge PVR-350 and the AVerMedia M179, have a video processor onboard which compresses the tuned video signal into an MPEG-2 program stream before sending it into the computer. The tends to greatly reduce the load on the entire machine (with certain technical caveats), and these cards are recommended for.. well for all systems, really, but specifically, for systems with more than one, and especially more than 2 tuner cards.