Can I turn my PC into a DVR?

Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

I have a P4 3ghz PC with more than enough memory, HD space, and a DVD-RW.
What else would I need to be able to record directly from, say, a satellite
TV feed, then encode for DVD creation? What would be the best capture device
for digital (satellite) and analog sources?

Is the quality better doing it the PC way, or is it pretty much the same as
using a standalone dvd recorder?

Isn't a satellite video already encoded to mpeg2?

Thanks in advance
16 answers Last reply
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  1. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    > I have a P4 3ghz PC with more than enough memory, HD space, and a
    DVD-RW.
    > What else would I need to be able to record directly from, say, a
    satellite
    > TV feed, then encode for DVD creation? What would be the best capture
    device
    > for digital (satellite) and analog sources?

    All you would need would be a capture card. See here:

    http://www.videohelp.com/capturecards

    I use an ATI All In Wonder card but if I were buying a new card I would
    probably get a Canopus ADVC-100. It all depends on how much you want to
    spend and whether you want to use it for digital video from a camera in
    addtion to capturing form the satellite.

    > Is the quality better doing it the PC way, or is it pretty much the
    same as
    > using a standalone dvd recorder?

    The final quality of the burn will be the same so since you already have
    a DVD-RW there is no reason to go out and buy a standalone unit.

    > Isn't a satellite video already encoded to mpeg2?

    From DirectTV and Dish, yes. From a big dish C-Band system, no. If you
    subscribe to Direct or Dish, a better option would be to use one of
    their Tivo, or in the case of Dish Tivo-like, units instead of your
    computer. They have many more features and are quite a bit less
    troublesome than PC's configured for DVR usage. They can be had for free
    or $99 depending on who the provider is. Peronally, I use Dish's DVR to
    record shows and those I want to burn to disk, I capture on my PC with
    the AIW card, edit out the commercials and then burn.
  2. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    Get the DVD Xpress from ADS Technologies. It works via the USB port. Saw this at
    the Showbiz Expo in New York and it is fantastic. Variable bit rate (1 to 15
    Mb/s) allow you to select how much you will record vs the quality level. Even at
    the lowest setting the picture was more than acceptable. Even allows for title
    screens and menus as if you were authoring without any rendering needed. Costs
    less than $100 on the street.

    George
  3. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    maril wrote:

    > I have a P4 3ghz PC with more than enough memory, HD space, and a DVD-RW.
    > What else would I need to be able to record directly from, say, a satellite
    > TV feed, then encode for DVD creation? What would be the best capture device
    > for digital (satellite) and analog sources?
    >
    > Is the quality better doing it the PC way, or is it pretty much the same as
    > using a standalone dvd recorder?
    >
    > Isn't a satellite video already encoded to mpeg2?

    http://www.htpcnews.com/

    http://www.shspvr/forum/
  4. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    On a sunny day (Mon, 10 May 2004 07:13:09 GMT) it happened "maril"
    <marr004@yahoo.com> wrote in
    <61c3efa6b67f25ba65d72c50a8823a56@news.teranews.com>:

    >I have a P4 3ghz PC with more than enough memory, HD space, and a DVD-RW.
    >What else would I need to be able to record directly from, say, a satellite
    >TV feed, then encode for DVD creation? What would be the best capture device
    A satellite PCI card.

    >for digital (satellite) and analog sources?
    For analog TV you will need an anolg TV card...

    >Is the quality better doing it the PC way, or is it pretty much the same as
    >using a standalone dvd recorder?
    Satellite in Europe (dunno where you are) is digital, and transmits in mpeg2.
    There is no quality loss.


    >Isn't a satellite video already encoded to mpeg2?
    >
    >Thanks in advance
    How to make multilanguage DVDs from digital sat transmissions in Europe
    using Linux OS is shown on my webpages:
    http://ip51cf87c4.direct-adsl.nl/panteltje/dvd/

    JP
  5. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "Morrmar" <morrmar@myway.com-no spam> wrote in message
    news:9SLnc.96327$7a5.21440@bignews6.bellsouth.net...
    > > I have a P4 3ghz PC with more than enough memory, HD space, and a
    > DVD-RW.
    > > What else would I need to be able to record directly from, say, a
    > satellite
    > > TV feed, then encode for DVD creation? What would be the best capture
    > device
    > > for digital (satellite) and analog sources?
    >
    > All you would need would be a capture card. See here:
    >
    > http://www.videohelp.com/capturecards
    >
    > I use an ATI All In Wonder card but if I were buying a new card I would
    > probably get a Canopus ADVC-100. It all depends on how much you want to
    > spend and whether you want to use it for digital video from a camera in
    > addtion to capturing form the satellite.
    >
    > > Is the quality better doing it the PC way, or is it pretty much the
    > same as
    > > using a standalone dvd recorder?
    >
    > The final quality of the burn will be the same so since you already have
    > a DVD-RW there is no reason to go out and buy a standalone unit.
    >
    > > Isn't a satellite video already encoded to mpeg2?
    >
    > From DirectTV and Dish, yes. From a big dish C-Band system, no. If you
    > subscribe to Direct or Dish, a better option would be to use one of
    > their Tivo, or in the case of Dish Tivo-like, units instead of your
    > computer. They have many more features and are quite a bit less
    > troublesome than PC's configured for DVR usage. They can be had for free
    > or $99 depending on who the provider is. Peronally, I use Dish's DVR to
    > record shows and those I want to burn to disk, I capture on my PC with
    > the AIW card, edit out the commercials and then burn.
    >

    So when you capture onto your PC from your Dish's DVR it's more like a
    transfer (no conversion), correct?

    Thanks
  6. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    > So when you capture onto your PC from your Dish's DVR it's more like a
    > transfer (no conversion), correct?

    Yes. But when I burn it to DVD, then it's converted to DVD format. And a
    C-Band satellite system is when you use a big dish, about 12-16 feet in
    diameter, to receive the satellite signal. Cleanest signal you can get.
    Unfortunately, it's a dying technology for home users.
  7. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "Morrmar" <morrmar@myway.com-no spam> wrote in message
    news:KMSnc.43437$UG2.24353@bignews2.bellsouth.net...
    > > So when you capture onto your PC from your Dish's DVR it's more like a
    > > transfer (no conversion), correct?
    >
    > Yes. But when I burn it to DVD, then it's converted to DVD format. And a
    > C-Band satellite system is when you use a big dish, about 12-16 feet in
    > diameter, to receive the satellite signal. Cleanest signal you can get.
    > Unfortunately, it's a dying technology for home users.
    >

    "Morrmar" I think you may have given "Maril" the impression that
    you are "transferring" MPEG off your DVR, as MPEG; instead of as
    an analog (probably S-Video) signal. I should point out that this is
    usually a very high quality analog signal, with very little if any noise.

    The quality of your source has a major impact on many parameters
    of your capture; not just image and audio quality but also the size of
    the capture file and efficiency of the encoding process.

    Luck;
    Ken
  8. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "maril" <marr004@yahoo.com> wrote in message
    news:61c3efa6b67f25ba65d72c50a8823a56@news.teranews.com...

    Thank you all for your help.
  9. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "Morrmar" <morrmar@myway.com-no spam> wrote in message
    news:9SLnc.96327$7a5.21440@bignews6.bellsouth.net...

    > > Isn't a satellite video already encoded to mpeg2?
    >
    > From DirectTV and Dish, yes. From a big dish C-Band system, no.

    Please excuse my ignorance but what the heck is a big dish C-Band system?
  10. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    > "Morrmar" I think you may have given "Maril" the impression that
    > you are "transferring" MPEG off your DVR, as MPEG; instead of as
    > an analog (probably S-Video) signal. I should point out that this is
    > usually a very high quality analog signal, with very little if any
    noise.

    Didn't mean to imply that at all but reading it back now, I see that
    might be the impression. To my knowledge, there is no way to take the
    raw mpeg data from any sat system and effectively use it without some
    type of re-encoding.

    > The quality of your source has a major impact on many parameters
    > of your capture; not just image and audio quality but also the size of
    > the capture file and efficiency of the encoding process.

    I capture uncompressed AVI from the S-Video out of the Dish sat and
    encode with ProCoder. I occasionally capture AVI from the composite
    output of my C-Band system (which is not compressed) and encode with
    ProCoder. On my 32" Sony, it's indistiguishable from the Dish capture
    but on my brother's 65" monster, it's quite a bit better. If it wasn't a
    dying technology, I'd invest in a newer C-band system (my current system
    is over 13 years old) with S-video out as a larger screen size is
    definitely in my future.
  11. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "Ken Maltby" <kmaltby@sbcglobal.net> wrote in message
    news:40a021a0$0$35106$a32e20b9@news.nntpservers.com...
    >
    > "Morrmar" <morrmar@myway.com-no spam> wrote in message
    > news:KMSnc.43437$UG2.24353@bignews2.bellsouth.net...
    > > > So when you capture onto your PC from your Dish's DVR it's more like a
    > > > transfer (no conversion), correct?
    > >
    > > Yes. But when I burn it to DVD, then it's converted to DVD format. And a
    > > C-Band satellite system is when you use a big dish, about 12-16 feet in
    > > diameter, to receive the satellite signal. Cleanest signal you can get.
    > > Unfortunately, it's a dying technology for home users.
    > >
    >
    > "Morrmar" I think you may have given "Maril" the impression that
    > you are "transferring" MPEG off your DVR, as MPEG; instead of as
    > an analog (probably S-Video) signal. I should point out that this is
    > usually a very high quality analog signal, with very little if any noise.
    >
    > The quality of your source has a major impact on many parameters
    > of your capture; not just image and audio quality but also the size of
    > the capture file and efficiency of the encoding process.
    >
    > Luck;
    > Ken
    >
    Thank you Ken
  12. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "Morrmar" <morrmar@myway.com-no spam> wrote in message
    news:qJ4oc.43996$UG2.24552@bignews2.bellsouth.net...
    > > "Morrmar" I think you may have given "Maril" the impression that
    > > you are "transferring" MPEG off your DVR, as MPEG; instead of as
    > > an analog (probably S-Video) signal. I should point out that this is
    > > usually a very high quality analog signal, with very little if any
    > noise.
    >
    > Didn't mean to imply that at all but reading it back now, I see that
    > might be the impression. To my knowledge, there is no way to take the
    > raw mpeg data from any sat system and effectively use it without some
    > type of re-encoding.
    >
    > > The quality of your source has a major impact on many parameters
    > > of your capture; not just image and audio quality but also the size of
    > > the capture file and efficiency of the encoding process.
    >
    > I capture uncompressed AVI from the S-Video out of the Dish sat and
    > encode with ProCoder. I occasionally capture AVI from the composite
    > output of my C-Band system (which is not compressed) and encode with
    > ProCoder. On my 32" Sony, it's indistiguishable from the Dish capture
    > but on my brother's 65" monster, it's quite a bit better. If it wasn't a
    > dying technology, I'd invest in a newer C-band system (my current system
    > is over 13 years old) with S-video out as a larger screen size is
    > definitely in my future.
    >
    I didn't know you could use one of the Canopus AVCs to capture from
    satellite, I thought I would need a TV tuner/whatever, but as you
    recommended I'm looking into the Canopus ADVC-100. But if I decide on the
    cheaper ADVC-50 ( I found a great deal under $130), would that work just the
    same? (it has an S-Video input also), as I'm really only doing old VHS to
    DVD, AND capturing from DTV or Dish to create DVDs.
  13. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    > cheaper ADVC-50 ( I found a great deal under $130), would that work
    just the
    > same? (it has an S-Video input also), as I'm really only doing old VHS
    to
    > DVD, AND capturing from DTV or Dish to create DVDs.

    If it has an S-video input, it'll work just fine. Just make sure that it
    can also _output_ analog data as well, as you don't want to take the
    signal from the sat, compress it to DV format and then re-compress it to
    DVD format. The best thing about these cards is they have a feature that
    locks the audio to the video so you don't have synchronization problems
    that frequently happen with older VHS tapes. Good luck!
  14. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "maril" <marr004@yahoo.com> wrote:

    >I have a P4 3ghz PC with more than enough memory, HD space, and a DVD-RW.
    >What else would I need to be able to record directly from, say, a satellite
    >TV feed, then encode for DVD creation? What would be the best capture device
    >for digital (satellite) and analog sources?
    >
    >Is the quality better doing it the PC way, or is it pretty much the same as
    >using a standalone dvd recorder?
    >
    >Isn't a satellite video already encoded to mpeg2?
    >
    >Thanks in advance
    >
    All you need is a TV Tuner card and Ulead DVD Movie Factory.
    Make sure your hard drive spins at 7200rpm.

    Regards Brian
  15. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    "Morrmar" <morrmar@myway.com-no spam> wrote in message
    news:YgLoc.5115$yF6.2391@bignews5.bellsouth.net...
    > > cheaper ADVC-50 ( I found a great deal under $130), would that work
    > just the
    > > same? (it has an S-Video input also), as I'm really only doing old VHS
    > to
    > > DVD, AND capturing from DTV or Dish to create DVDs.
    >
    > If it has an S-video input, it'll work just fine. Just make sure that it
    > can also _output_ analog data as well, as you don't want to take the
    > signal from the sat, compress it to DV format and then re-compress it to
    > DVD format. The best thing about these cards is they have a feature that
    > locks the audio to the video so you don't have synchronization problems
    > that frequently happen with older VHS tapes. Good luck!
    >

    Hi, I also wish to record directly on to my pc, so my question is: isn't the
    capture with an advc-100 an AVI that then needs to be compresssed to mpeg2?
    can you explain to me why you would need it to be able to 'output' analog as
    well?

    Thanks

    BTW, i have the advc-50 and it only has an s-video input.
  16. Archived from groups: rec.video.desktop (More info?)

    > > If it has an S-video input, it'll work just fine. Just make sure
    that it
    > > can also _output_ analog data as well, as you don't want to take
    the
    > > signal from the sat, compress it to DV format and then re-compress
    it to
    > > DVD format. The best thing about these cards is they have a feature
    that
    > > locks the audio to the video so you don't have synchronization
    problems
    > > that frequently happen with older VHS tapes. Good luck!
    > >
    >
    > Hi, I also wish to record directly on to my pc, so my question is:
    isn't the
    > capture with an advc-100 an AVI that then needs to be compresssed to
    mpeg2?
    > can you explain to me why you would need it to be able to 'output'
    analog as
    > well?

    I don't have the card but I was under the impression that not only could
    it encode to DV-AVI, which is a compressed format, but it could also
    output uncompressed RGB AVI files as well. Their website mentions
    720X480 analog output in it's specs. So, as I said above, the original
    signal would only be compressed once (when converting to DVD), not
    twice.


    > BTW, i have the advc-50 and it only has an s-video input.

    So it only outputs with composite or RF connectors? That would not be
    good from a quality standpoint.
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