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WinTV-HVR-1600 and Windows Media Center

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 26, 2012 3:30:26 PM

I have the WinTV-HVR-1600 tuner and it works ok. I'm using it with Windows 7, 64 bit. It works perfectly using WinTV 7 but won't work if I use Windows Media Center. After about 10 seconds, the TV freezes.

I'm using it with the S-Video input and AV cables only. I'm not using either of the tuner inputs.

I have the latest drivers. There is no error that points to the source of the problem. Just a note about checking for latest drivers. Anyone else see this problem? Probably not a big enough user base, so I'm not holding my breath but I thought I'd ask. I'll probably just replace it with something better (I'll put that in a different post). ;) 
March 26, 2012 4:42:27 PM

Hello,

Just want to let you know TV tuners are known to over heat due to lack of cooling on the TV tuner itself.

Have you tried running WMC with a fan directly pointed on your TV Tuner card? Yea it sounds strange, but that's the case with TV tuners.
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March 26, 2012 5:21:04 PM

My tuner is directly below my graphics card and there is a fan blowing on it already, indirectly from the graphics card. The other thing is I'm not actually using the tuners. But I can give that a try. No such thing as too much cooling. ;) 

I'm not really fond of this card so it will probably go, even though it works well with WinTV 7.

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March 26, 2012 5:55:56 PM

Alright. Maybe it is getting enough cooling after all. In that case it might seem it's a software issue.

What exact version of Windows Media Center are you using, and what are you trying to do, just display video from your S VIDEO input?

Also is it just WMC that freezes, or your whole computer?
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March 26, 2012 7:25:47 PM

I also use the same card. Same OS. WMC has a fix for the issue. Essentially it releases the card from the boot loaded hauppague media server so it can been used in WMC. I'm unsure of the KB article number so you can search "Tuner card issue" on MS TechNet to find the updated patch to WMC. Incidently, it seems to be a Win7-64 issue by default. Not the card. The patch did wonders for me. Works great.
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March 26, 2012 10:05:29 PM

Quote:
What exact version of Windows Media Center are you using, and what are you trying to do, just display video from your S VIDEO input?


I'll have to check the version tonight but I have updated my windows OS so I assumed it would be the latest. Yes, just trying to display video that comes in S-video.

Quote:
Also is it just WMC that freezes, or your whole computer?


It's just the VMC video that freezes. The computer is still running. I'll start the Live TV and within 10 seconds, the screen freezes and I have to X out of the application. WinTV works fine. I'm also not trying to use both at the same time.
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March 27, 2012 4:47:41 AM

Ahh ok. I think Omi3D might have answered for you already.
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March 27, 2012 3:22:05 PM

Updating on the MS update page will not install the patch. It is a WMC patch for those only having the issue. Typically, devices do not need to be released from the bus handling of the apps which require them, so that another app can use them properly. In some cases they might. WMC had no such "switch" by default. The patch fixes this oversight from what I can see.

This is the patch which fixed it for me:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/981129
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March 27, 2012 6:04:24 PM

I'll try that patch tonight and see if it helps. Was your problem that you could start to watch a video and the video would freeze. Or was your problem that it doesn't recognize the tuner?

Mine sees the tuner and starts to play the video. It just freezes after starting.
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March 27, 2012 7:15:21 PM

Hauppage tuners are very stable. I tried several models 1600, 1800, 1850 before i settled on 2250.

What is your system configuration? How much drive space do you have?

Hauppage tuner cards is a bit slow to update. It uses memory and hard drive the buffer the show. If you are viewing HD TV show it uses ~ 4G Byte for about an hour of show.

These cars run well w/ WIndows Media and using Happauge provided TV software. I use it as my HD DVR/PVR.

I had my board is early 2008.
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March 27, 2012 7:44:49 PM

I don't actually use the tuner parts. The tuner in this card doesn't accept the digital cable I have. So, I just feed S-Video into the card and AV for audio. I had to do the same thing on my other TV card before I removed it.

I have three hard drives. The smallest is 128G (with 90G free). The other two drives have 300G free and 500G free. I have 8G of RAM.

The card works great with WinTV 7. I have recorded hours of video, using WinTV 7. But I can't even view 30 seconds using WMC.
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March 27, 2012 8:35:41 PM

Yes. I had lockups when switching inputs or TV channels in WMC. Things not seen in the WinTV7 app unless I switched channels 3 or 4 times a few seconds after each channel.
Switching to inputs (like your S-video) locked it up almost right away.

I do some light programming - so I peeked under the hood. I could see the card not responding to WMC calls. It appeared to be a OS bug straight away because the WMC could not keep the attention of the card even though the card was set up in WMC. I've used the Hauppauge line of cards for years. Very reliable cards and very good apps mostly. Any warez can have bugs.

All of that disappeared after the update. Thankfully. Works very well now for months.

Edit Note: Forgot to mention that the WinTV7 update "wintv_cd_2.5" from Hauppauge, improves the channel/input switching even more.
It's quicker and more responsive and the auto tune function works better too. Seems "timing is everything" holds true in this case.
I highly recommend it. Run the patch and install the latest s/w. You'll be good to go.
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March 28, 2012 4:24:45 PM

I tried the fix but got a popup that said something to the effect that the patch was not applicable to my system. I have 64 bit OS and used the 64 bit patch. It wouldn't run on my system. Perhaps because it's already there.

Still have the same problem. WMC freezes when I try to watch TV. It freezes after about 10 seconds. I'm going to see if something in WMC is setup incorrectly. I'm not using the tuners and don't know if that might be the problem. I have used WMC on my previous tuner, which also didn't actually use the tuner. I've always just used the S-Video input, since both my cards didn't accept the digital cable signal. Just can't seem to get WMC to work this time. :( 

At least WinTV 7 works fine. I can view, record and playback just fine with that program. So at least I'm not dead in the water. ;) 
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March 29, 2012 5:42:20 PM

Very curious. This is exactly the issue I had. The patch absolutely fixed it.

When I went about diagnosing mine, I made sure to uninstall the Hauppague Driver and the WinTV7 software first. I then loaded only the card's driver w/ no WinTV installed yet. I ran the WMC patch then performed the WMC setup. I installed WinTV7 last. Problem Gone.

*The latest Hauppague driver also has a slight but very important performance change.

1) The only thing which makes sense to me about this result is an IRQ conflict with another device shared or a previous device install. To clear a stubborn PnP bus contention issue does require that you remove all the drivers and software, unplug the A/C cord to the PS, remove the card itself from the mainboard, do a reboot 2x and then proceed to do a fresh install for the device. Something about your system seems to be amiss beyond the norm.

2) Perhaps some remnant of the other older tuner card still holds the bus address space(s) or is still loading its handles from the registry at boot up? It would not be unusual for this to occur. Many wares leave footprints of the primary install behind after an uninstall. To be sure, you might also try running a late version of CCleaner to clean old entries out of the Windows registry as a precaution. Especially if you had been running another tuner card on that same image of Win 7. After rebooting to a cleaned registry, do a fresh install with the driver first as mentioned above.

If you are sure the WMC is fully patched, then these are worth a try. Also make sure you are doing this with Administrator priviledge and no anti-virus software potentially blocking a complete normal install.

I am very curious if you can't solve the problem. But these are the things I would do to address an issue beyond a patched WMC.
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March 29, 2012 5:57:10 PM

Quote:
2) Perhaps some remnant of the other older tuner card still holds the bus address space(s) or is still loading its handles from the registry at boot up?


That can't be the problem because after I removed the old TV card, I removed the drive and installed a new SSD and reinstalled everything, from a new instal. So everything about the old system was gone.

I think it's some sort of conflict also. I'll probably uninstall everything and add them back one piece at a time. One of the other clues, and it might not actually be a clue, is that I get one potential driver error on PCIe. It's the "Other" and the yellow exclamation point saying the driver can't be found. I don't know for sure which device this is. I'm thinking it was my modem. But the modem was also removed. Since it's a PCIe error and my problem seems to be related to PCI, perhaps there is a connection.

I have uninstalled the driver, but it keeps coming back with the yellow exclamation, so the hardware must be there. I need to find out what hardware it thinks is missing the driver. Since I'm not using the tuner and WinTV isn't expecting the tuner, maybe that's why WinTV works. WMC might be expecting the tuner. I'll just have to investigate this a bit further.

But I will begin to actually troubleshoot this later this week. I'm kind of liking WinTV 7. About the only thing I don't like is the way the channels are viewed. I have to use a different browser to view them and I'm limited to only the first 100 channels. With WMC, I could use my cable box remote to do everything. I can still use my cable box TV guide but that requires using 2 remotes. If I can get this to work with WMC, I only need one remote. ;) 
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March 29, 2012 7:23:02 PM

OK... Now, That just might be the problem. PCI or PCIe? Which one?

Missing bus drivers especially if for mainboard type devices can sometimes prevent the proper "steering" of system calls with or to other devices. If its an onboard audio device type or other system-bus related device, you can practically be sure of it.

You can get the device identified by getting a "property ID" of the device. Do that by right-clicking on that unknown device and select properties. That contains the text string of the manufacturer and a model/type device code. You can then google the ID code string and find the proper driver on the web. There are also utilities that can perform the same task and find the driver for you for free, but be aware some may harrass you to buy some product or service that they offer or may serve up paid ads.

I would start with that missing device driver. I would still clean the Win 7 registry also (can't hurt at this point). Wipe out anything it finds.
CCleaner is free tool with an excellant reputation for accurately removing buried non-current registry entries in Windows. I find it an invaluable tool when troubleshooting as it has found more than a few such outdated device or software entries causing various issues.

FYI - WinTV will work the same way with any cable box attached to the card and the proper channel input selected (usually ch 3). Your cable box remote will then be the only remote you need to change channels.

Also - While looking over my shoulder, a highly regarded software engineer friend of mine mentioned that it is possible for WMC to lockup - if during the WMC setup, no actual TV signals were sensed by WMC on the tuning portion of the setup. It may not complete the necessary steps to finish the actual setup and .. if the "no signal" message had been suppressed in some way. Rare, but uniquely possible he says if the timeout did not properly occur for some reason he says. Solution is said to be - to add any over-the-air type antenna and do the setup on that since WMC is not expecting a signal NOT to be present. For whats its worth.

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March 30, 2012 3:33:09 PM

I have already tried the property ID and googled it and it references modems. I have removed the modem from my system. But the problem didn't go away. I already have CCleaner and it's done it's thing and the problem is still there.

My video board is a standard PCI and it's driver is loaded. PCIe is for the other slots.

I'm thinking it's something to do with the tuner part. Might have to try faking that part. I can't complete the tuner setup, as there is no input I can provide to the tuner. I don't think my cable is the right kind of input for what these tuners are expecting.
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March 30, 2012 6:27:43 PM

MikeSD said:
I'm thinking it's something to do with the tuner part. Might have to try faking that part. I can't complete the tuner setup, as there is no input I can provide to the tuner. I don't think my cable is the right kind of input for what these tuners are expecting.


If you are in another country (outside the US NTSC system) then thats also likely. If you have a subscription based cable service for both TV & Internet (and the proper format tuner NTSC or PAL tuner). You should be able to see your basic channels. Even "Clear QAM" digital if they also push those. The only ones you "should not" be able to get are the extra & extended service options (HBO, SHOW, etc) premium and PPV. Cable systems are proprietary systems. They scramble signals according to their own matrix of addressable set top boxes. But all usually require "basic analog cable" so you should be able to get those (between ch. 2 & 125) if subscribed. The 1600 is an analog capable tuner.

If you have Internet as well, then I would highly suggest a "band limited separator" or a "band limited splitter". These prevent your "TV signal" information from being interfered with by the "internet data" information (& vice-versa) which do reside on the same pipe. They go by many names such as "high pass" or "low pass" filter, etc. Check with your provider for the required filter type that allows basic analog TV signals to pass through. Trying to use a tuner without one (when both services are present) gets you no where except for a lot of interferance & noise, and with so many signals present has the effect of being "untranslateable" to any standard type tuner like the 1600. Each cable system provider can vary all these things in their system matrix by quite a bit (unique to each operator) so its a good idea to do some fact finding about it.

If your system is still looking for a modem type driver than its likely a mainboard controlled device. Disable this in your Bios even if the card was a daughter-board aux card. If any modem type entry exists in the Bios somewhere, then it is such and should be disabled if you removed the daughter card. Also be sure it actually was a modem that got removed and not a network type card. Many older ones can appear to be identical practically in outward appearance.

Hope it helps!

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March 30, 2012 6:42:56 PM

Ok, I'll try the cable tonight, just to see if I can get past the tuner setup. I am in the U.S. and subscribe to comcast. I already have the splitter thingy to seperate my internet from cable.

I will also look for modem in BIOS, that's a good tip. I'll double check the card to verify if it's network or modem. I know I still have network connections because I use them for my web cams. ;)  If it was network, I'll put it back. ;) 

Thanks,
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