Can you get cable with a tv tuner
Can I get Cable TV with a tv tuner?
Yes. The TV Tuner card needs to have a ClearQAM tuner (and you need to have a basic cable tv subscription). In most cases, with any cable subscription above Basic Cable, some cable channels are encrypted. The set top box the cable company provides not only tunes the channel, but also decrypts these higher channels (such as ESPN, Disney, HBO, etc...). A standard tuner card cannot decrypt these channels. Only a set top box or a CableCard ready TV Tuner Device can do this (with a cable company supplied cablecard).
Standard Tuner Device Recommendations:
Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-2250 <-- pretty much the gold standard for Over the Air (OTA) and basic cable signals. Record two programs or watch one while recording another at the same time.
Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-1850 <-- The 2250's little brother. Single tuner to watch or record a single program; be it a digital OTA broadcast or basic cable program. Includes an FM Radio Tuner.
Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-1250 <-- Older version of the 1850, and without the FM Tuner.
Cablecard Ready Tuner Device Recommendations:
Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650 <-- Same as the WinTV-HVR-2250, but with the cablecard installed, able to view and record those encrypted channels.
SiliconDust HDHomeRun Prime <-- Same as above, but with three tuners. Watch one channel while recording two other programs or record three channels simultaneously.
Ceton InfiniTV4 USB <-- Same as above, but with four tuners. Watch one channel while recording three other channels or record four channels simultaneously.
Ceton InfiniTV4 PCI-E (what I use) <-- Same as the Ceton InfiniTV4 USB, but internal.
One added benefit to using a CableCard ready device (if you need the option), is that you can assign a tuner to any other networked computer and monitor or media extender, like an XBox 360 or the new Ceton Echo connected to an HDTV. This allows you to watch cable TV as if a tuner card were installed in the attached PC/Media Extender. The Hauppauge and SiliconDust CableCard ready devices allow for dynamic assignment of tuners while the Ceton devices are static assignments.
Hope this helps.