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Old March 14, 2009, 08:41 AM
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Mr. Gruntsworthy Mr. Gruntsworthy is offline
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Courtice, ONT
Posts: 750
Default Capture Card | TV Tuner

I currently have a cheap-o PCI capture card that doubles as a TV tuner. The thing only cost me about thirty bucks, and I knew it was going to be fairly crappy; but it was all I needed at the time.

Now, however, I'm building an HTPC (as indicated in the 'My Refined HTPC Build' thread), and I want a fairly decent, low-profile PCI-E card that can to the following:

  • Capture Component input (the yellow video cable). Sound will be handled by the onboard sound, or more probable, a sound card.
  • Properly tune into Rogers Cable. I'm still on analog, I'll worry about the switchover to digital when the time comes. My current card displays snow artifacting in all channels (meanwhile a direct connection to my TV works fine, so it's not the cable). I want something that can keep the cable input in it's highest quality.
All suggestions very much appreciated :)

By the way, through standard Component, what is the resolution Component broadcasts at? I know it's not as high as Composite, but I'm pretty sure Component doesn't broadcast max at 320 x 240, which is what my capture card software captures raw AVI input as. (actually, i can use the MPEG-2 encoding at 640 x 480, but the recorded file has highly noticeable compression artifacts).

Or is this problem merely caused by the severely limiting 133MB/s bandwidth of the PCI slot? I know that raw AVI files at 320 x 240 go about 26GB an hour, so I think that's why. Not sure though.

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