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Old 09-07-2013, 10:50 PM   #1
cwnelson
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Near Charlotte, NC (sort of)
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Video Capture

Since I have TWC and there are certain things I can't transfer, I have been looking at other options, the best of which right now is my old series 2 which over the years has degraded in image. Most of the things I want to transfer and keep are streamed, so I found video capture software and got a free trial but when I run it, the memory required makes the images...not great. Maybe if I try to plug right into the router I'll have better luck, but in the meantime I thought I'd ask if there are some reasonable capture cards or devices (under $100, and maybe way under if possible) that anyone can recommend for a laptop. Thanks for the help.
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Old 09-07-2013, 11:45 PM   #2
Davelnlr_
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To capture video with a reasonable picture quality, you need a capture device with an onboard encoder. Most laptops and a lot of desktops do not have the processing power to encode good quality on the fly.

If you can find an old used Pinnacle mpeg2 encoder, or spring a little more and get a hauppauge HDPVR capture box, you will be much happier. Both these devices have internal mpeg2 (and h.264 with the HDPVR) encoder chips, and will work with even the slowest of PC's, since all the PC does is take the stream from the encoder and write it to the hard drive.

One on ebay for $75
http://compare.ebay.com/like/2009609...Types&var=sbar
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Old 09-08-2013, 01:56 AM   #3
cwnelson
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Thanks, Davelnlr. I was looking at these earlier. If these work as well as you say, it might be worth a little more and getting one new from Amazon. If I got a new one, which one would you recommend: the PVR Gaming Edition, the PVR 2 Gaming ed, or the PVR 2? I read the reviews on these and most of them say that if you're not tech savvy on these things they're a pain. Would you agree? I think I could pick it up, but I don't have a lot of free time to figure things out. And the device streams the video from the internet? Sorry for all the questions, but it's quite a price just to do this a few times a year. I need to be sure it will do what I want or it won't be worth it. THanks again.
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Old 09-08-2013, 03:14 AM   #4
Worf
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I'd suggest if you can find it, get a Hauppage HD-PVR. No Gaming Edition, No 2. The original.

First, if you give up on TiVo for whatever reason, you can always use it with Windows MCE (The "Gaming Editions" lack the IR blaster, while the 2 lacks MCE support). The only software supported by the 2 is their own and maybe MythTV (HD-PVR is supported by Myth as well, of course).

Second, it can be had for well under $150 on sale or deep discount, even new.

Maybe the 2 fixes the big flaw in the HD-PVR, in that its firmware has a tendency to crash if you keep it on all the time. I don't know as I prefer MCE to whatever Hauppage has for PVR software. But if you're capturing, it's USB, so you can always power cycle it before use.

Plus I think the HD-PVR is the only one that comes with Arcsoft Total Media Extreme - it's an older version, but it works and is relatively easy to use. The 2 comes with something else - a lite version I believe.
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