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Thread: WinTV PVR-150

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  1. Member
    Join Date: Jun 2004
    Location: USA
    Search Comp PM
    I recently installed a WinTV PVR-150 and have a few problems.

    1. The colors are washed out when played on my TV from a burned DVD. I read from the comments on this site that there are registry tweaks to correct this. Where can I find out how to do those tweaks?

    2. Every so often I get an audio chirp in my recorded clips, what could be causing this? Has anyone else experienced this with this card? I just watched a DVD made by an aquaintance where the material was captured using a WinTV 250 and it also had audio spikes or chirps.

    3. I lost all control of my desktop not immediately but very shortly after installing the card and software. The background picture was gone, the screen saver was turned off and I can not seem to turn it back on and so on... Any ideas?

    My setup;

    P4, 2.53, XP Home SP1, 512Mb, ATI AIW7500(I just use it for my monitor display), Creative Sound Blaster Audigy

    Suggestions will be greatly appreciated!

    wwjd
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  2. Member mats.hogberg's Avatar
    Join Date: Jul 2002
    Location: Sweden (PAL)
    Search Comp PM
    1. Look here.
    2. Never experienced anything like that with my 250 (that seems very similar)
    3. Sounds unrelated to the card/software

    /Mats
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  3. Washed out colors: did you adjust the WinTV2000 application to get good colors on your computer monitor? If so, that's the source of your problem. Computer monitors have a very different gamma (brightness curve) than televisions. If you turn the brightness up in the WinTV2000 app your MPEG files will be way to bright and washed out when burned to a DVD.

    Audio glitch: Does this happen only after you've recorded to DVD? And only on your DVD player? Note that MP2 audio is not formally supported by NTSC DVD players (although most of them can handle it). You may have to convert the audio to AC3. If your DVD mastering app converted to AC3 maybe the problem was introduced there. Also, try different audio bitrates.

    Screen saver: The WinTV2000 application disables the screen saver while it's running. I think there's a setting within the program that changes that.
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  4. Member
    Join Date: Jun 2004
    Location: USA
    Search Comp PM
    Thanks for the suggestions!

    I took my system back a recent restore point and that got the desktop back in order.

    I made sure to allow the system to go into screensaver mode by checking the appropriate box in the WinTV2000 application. My screen saver is now turned off 100% of the time.

    I have not had a chance to check out the audio chirp on other DVD players. I am not absolutely sure that the chirp is only on the DVD or if it was in the original recording. The original has been deleted so I could not check it. More testing to come.

    WinTV2000 did have some default settings for contrast and brightness that were not nominal settings. I have set them back to nominal and we will see if this corrects the washed looking video.

    I am also reading through the site that mats.hogberg suggested.

    In general I am a little under impressed with the capture card. It installed easily and WinTV2000 is easy to use. The picture quality is not as good as I had hoped for. I will need to do more recordings to make a final decision. I am comparing it do what I have been doing which was: cablebox-->ADVC100-->CCE Basic-->VS8(no re-encode)-->Shrink/DVD DeCrypter to burn to disk.

    Thanks again!

    wwjd
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  5. Here's another good site for PVR 250/350 tweeks:

    http://www.cask-of-amontillado.com/htpc.html

    See the "Tips and Tricks" section especially.
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  6. Member
    Join Date: Jun 2004
    Location: USA
    Search Comp PM
    junkmalle,

    Thanks I will check it out.

    I looks as though the audio chirps and spikes are related to a particular DVD player that I own. The same DVD on other players does not have this issue.

    I owe an apology to WinTV regarding my comment about their card under
    performing. As it turns out my Sony LCD 50" TV just went black. Looks like the bulb was on its way out. I have been thinking that the picture was getting dimmer but the other inhabitants in my household did not think so. At any rate it is dead for now. I did look at the video on my 20" TV and it looks great in terms of color and contrast, not washed out at all.

    Live and learn.

    wwjd
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  7. Member SHS's Avatar
    Join Date: Oct 2000
    Location: Coleman, Oklahoma
    Search Comp PM
    Now you why I hate LCD I perf CRT but sad part is nobody make a big CRT in 16:9 that fully Multi-Sycn
    Just though to you audio with Home DVD Player it may not full support MPEG 1 Layer 2 Audio as well as Dolby Digital for this there are a few really good apps Sonic MyDVD Studio Deluxe Suite 6, Ulead DVD MovieFactory 3 Disc Creator which allow to do Dolby Digital Audio Encoding on the fly re-encode audio with out messing with Video part and I it also possable TMPGEnc DVD Author 1.6 with TMPGEnc Sound plug-in AC-3 is the same way but I have test it.
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  8. Member
    Join Date: Jun 2004
    Location: USA
    Search Comp PM
    SHS,

    Is there a way to have WinTV adjust the bit rate according to the length of the recording? I have heard this is possible but I can not seem to find out how.

    Scheduled recordings start 10-20secs after the intended recording start time, is there a way around this other than to edit each recording to start 1 min earlier?

    Lastly, which gives a better result, VBR or CBR? I am talking specifically for the WinTV PVR 150. Normally I would use the highest CBR that my recording length could tolerate and still fit on a DVD.

    Thanks

    wwjd
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  9. Originally Posted by wwjd
    Is there a way to have WinTV adjust the bit rate according to the length of the recording? I have heard this is possible but I can not seem to find out how.
    The only way to do this is to create your own bitrate templates with different constant bitrates. Menu --> Configure --> MPEG Settings --> Advanced. You could make a 60, 90, 120... minute settings. Unfortunately, with WinTV2000 scheduler, you can't tell it to use a specific setting for each recording.

    Originally Posted by wwjd
    Scheduled recordings start 10-20secs after the intended recording start time, is there a way around this other than to edit each recording to start 1 min earlier?
    I don't know of any way around this -- except setting your PC 20 seconds fast! But I run software that automatically adjust the time via the internet so my PC is always within a second of the correct time. I just start recording a minute early, and end recording a minute after the show finishes. So for a show that runs from 2:00 to 3:00 I start recording at 1:59 and record for 62 minutes.

    Originally Posted by wwjd
    Lastly, which gives a better result, VBR or CBR? I am talking specifically for the WinTV PVR 150. Normally I would use the highest CBR that my recording length could tolerate and still fit on a DVD.
    If you mean to compare say, CBR at 6000, and VBR with a max of 6000 and an average of 4000, then the CBR will be slightly better quality.

    If you mean to compare CBR at 6000 to VBR with a max of 8000 and a average of 6000 then the VBR file will usually be better. High bitrates will be use when needed, and lower bitrates during scenes where it's not needed. I always use VBR at 12000 peak, 9600 average (I don't usually burn to movie DVDs).
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  10. I too get washed out colors on my lcd monitor, but not on the TV. I recommend you use the default settings for best dvd production.

    Re the audio, I have had the same problem. It occurs when I have TMPG Author set to convert audio to ac-3. If I leave it as mp audio, I do not have a problem.

    LRD
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  11. Member
    Join Date: Jun 2004
    Location: USA
    Search Comp PM
    I know I should know this but I do not, what is the difference between capturing using the DVD setting vs the 'Program Stream' ?

    Also, do you recommend CRC be checked or unchecked?

    wwjd
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  12. Member mats.hogberg's Avatar
    Join Date: Jul 2002
    Location: Sweden (PAL)
    Search Comp PM
    DVD, SVCD and VCD mpegs have more specific characteristics than being mpeg2 resp. mpeg1. Setting the output to Program encodes to a generic mpeg (not ready for authoring). CRC in audio? No idea what it does, but I have it unchecked.

    /Mats
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  13. Member tipstir's Avatar
    Join Date: Jul 2003
    Location: Connecticut
    Search Comp PM
    The default settings of the WinTV PVR-150 are just fine, but I've tweak it for sharpness, the results on TV/Monitor tube is is close to a pre-recorded DVD disc.

    The software that comes with the CAP isn't the greatest, I had had dub over 2hrs of Hi8 mm to MPEG2, I going to go back to ULEAD DVD Workshop Professional.

    I use GB-PVR for all my off the air capture with PVR-150 Hardware Encoding at Sharpness setting of 7. Plus Mainconcept MPEG2 Encoder/Decoder

    Again otherwise the CAP is the same as PVR-250 but doesn't use two chips (1 for audio and 1 for video) instead of just integrate them into one chip.

    Regards
    TipStir!
    Best Regards,

    Tipstir
    MediaMVP Supporter
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  14. Hi Tipster. Could you please give me more details about the sharpening registry edit for the wintv-pvr150 card. I just got the card and really like it except is it a bit soft and a little ghosty. I think the sharpening would really make a very good picture.

    I tried a registry edit for sharpening from the cask-of-amontillado.com site in the tips and tricks section for the 250/350 cards. This didn't change my sharpness at all.

    If you have ideas about this I would greatly appreciate it.
    Thanks, Dan
    Vboy
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  15. Originally Posted by camper
    Hi Tipster. Could you please give me more details about the sharpening registry edit for the wintv-pvr150 card. I just got the card and really like it except is it a bit soft and a little ghosty. I think the sharpening would really make a very good picture.

    I tried a registry edit for sharpening from the cask-of-amontillado.com site in the tips and tricks section for the 250/350 cards. This didn't change my sharpness at all.

    If you have ideas about this I would greatly appreciate it.
    Thanks, Dan
    <edit> By the way, I'm speaking from experience withh the PVR-250. I don't know for sure if the same tweeks work on the PVR-150. </edit>

    You have to reboot after making the changes from cask-of-amontillado. The registry entries are only read by the driver when it's started at boot time.

    One thing to keep in mind is that your TV sharpens the picture while it's displaying it, whereas your computer monitor doesn't. If you bump the PVR's sharpen filter too high you will get an over-sharp picture when you play it off DVD. I think the default setting of 2 is actually too high. But I record mostly off digital cable which has a clearer picture than broadcast TV or VHS.
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  16. Thanks junkmalle,

    I did reboot after applying the regedits from the cask-of-amontillado website and checked that the changes were applied in the registry but found no change in TV sharpness display. I also tried a short TV capture and ran the included Ulead 3 SE program to make a DVD. Alas, the DVD wasn't sharper on DVD either.

    I wonder if Tipster has some other registry tricks other than what's on the website that work on only the pvr-150 and not the pvr-250 card?

    Thanks Dan
    Vboy
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  17. Camper, it sounds like you know what you're doing. But just in case you didn't notice, there may be more than one SharpnessValue setting in the Registry. I have three, one in each of:

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Services\G lobespan\Parameters\ivac15\Driver]

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet003\Services\G lobespan\Parameters\ivac15\Driver]

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Servic es\Globespan\Parameters\ivac15\Driver]

    The one in CurrentControlSet is the one to change.

    By the way, thanks for bringing this up! I went to Amontillado's site and and was looking at the registry hacks there and noticed one that was marked for the PVR-350 only. It was the setting that allowed you to turn off MPEG decoding on the computer (because the PVR-350 has a TV out that you can monitor) to reduce CPU usage. This setting works on the PVR-250 too! Of course with MPEG decoding disabled I can't see or hear what's being recorded, but now the WinTV2000 app can record without it taking any CPU time! Too bad the app only checks the setting at when it starts up.
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  18. Download graphedit and insert the following WDM filters:

    Hauppauge WinTV PVR PCI II Capture

    Hauppauge WinTV PVR PCI II Encoder

    Right click on either of these to get to their properties page. You now have access to everything. If you want the settings to persist after reboot (they are applied immediately, even if WinTV is running) paste the following into notepad and save as something like "HCWSaveSettings.reg" and then double click on it to add it to the registry:

    REGEDIT4

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Servic es\hcwPP2\DriverData]
    "HcwSaveEncoderSettings"=dword:00000001


    By the way, I managed to get the PVR-150 to work under VVcr.
    -Dano
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  19. Member
    Join Date: Jun 2004
    Location: USA
    Search Comp PM
    Suds,

    I did just as you instructed but the settings are all set back to defaults after rebooting. What am I doing wrong?

    By the way thanks for the information!

    wwjd
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  20. Maybe it should be hcwPVRP2 rather than hcwPP2?

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Servic es\hcwPVRP2\DriverData]
    "HcwSaveEncoderSettings"=dword:00000001
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  21. Thanks for your help junkmalle and information. I checked all three registry setting and found that they all were set to the highest sharpness of 7. I did have a previous PVR card (avermedia) in my system and possibly this is somehow preventing the registrys settings from working. I will try the graphedit program to see if that works.

    Thanks for all the help and suggestions.
    Dan
    Vboy
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  22. Camper, I tried graphedit and it was able to interactively change the sharpness while WinTV2000 was running. I could see the picture get more or less sharp as I moved the slider.

    Too bad the inverse telecine setting doesn't do anything. Changing that setting in the Registry doesn't work either.
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  23. Thanks Junkmalle for the information about sharpening with Graphedit. After I downloaded the program and tried to use it I found that I quickly ran out of knowledge about how to really use it.

    I assume now that the two files I need to filter/edit mentioned by suds Hauppauge WinTV PVR PCI II Capture & Hauppauge WinTV PVR PCI II Encoder do not have WDM extensions.

    How do you find the files to edit and do you know of any tips about editing or filtering the files once you load them in Graphedit? I think once I get going it won't be too hard, but I've found I'm not sure how to get started. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks, Dan
    Vboy
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  24. Camper, Here's what I did:

    1) Extract the archive to a suitable location. Like c:\program files\graphedit.

    2) Go to that folder with Explorer and double click on the file called Register.bat to register the components.

    3) Start graphedt.exe

    4) From within the program select Graph -> Insert Filters.

    5) Scroll down to "Video Capture Source". Open the section (+) and hilite "Hauppauge WinTV PVR PCI II Capture".

    6) Press the Insert Filter button, and then the Close button.

    7) Back at the main window you will see them big box with the Hauppauge inputs and outputs. Right click on it and select Filter Properties.

    8) The Video Proc Amp tab has the Sharpness slider. If you move it around while WinTV2000 is running you should see the picture get sharper or blurier.
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  25. Actually you will see more of a difference by adjusting the WinTV PVR PCI II Encoder Dynamic Noise Reduction settings.
    -Dano
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  26. Originally Posted by Suds
    Actually you will see more of a difference by adjusting the WinTV PVR PCI II Encoder Dynamic Noise Reduction settings.
    "WinTV PVR PCI II Encoder" is found under "WDM Streaming Multiplexer Devices" but I don't see any Noise Reduction controls there. I use this program instead:

    http://www.shspvr.com/download/hcwpp2ut.zip

    Don't know if it will work for the PVR-150.
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  27. Junkmalle,

    Thanks for taking the time to explain Graphedit! Those were great instructions and it worked well on my system The pvr-150 card is looking better and better.

    And thanks to Suds too for your input.
    Dan
    Vboy
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  28. Member
    Join Date: Jun 2003
    Location: United States
    Search Comp PM
    Bought a PVR-150 this afternoon and installed it this evening into a Shuttle SN41G2 (nVidia m'board w/AthlonXP2500+). Seems to work very well. I'm tweaking the video capture settings to stuff a bit more time/MB without introducing too many aftifacts.

    I do have one problem, however, that I'm sure is simply a matter of some settings: The mpeg files I get from a capture (in any standard format or any new ones I've created) are all way too loud when compared to DVD rips or even when I play a disc (with those captured mpegs) on my set-top DVD player. I have to turn down the volume so far that, when I switch back to normal TV (on the TV set, not my PC), you can't even hear it without turning it back up. If it were just that, I'd live with the volume difference. However, it is obvious when listening to the captures (on the TV, not the PC) that there is some distortion as a result of the input volume (when capturing) being too high.

    I recall seeing something about tweaking the registry setting for the audio capture but I've been unable to locate the appropriate registry item.

    I should note that I've turned down the volume in the WinTV app but I'm not sure this is where the issue is. I'm using the WinTV Wave setting in the audio config as the "plain" Wave setting resulted in the WinTV app plahing everything way too loud on the PC (and the burned discs).

    I'll also note that captured mpegs play much louder on my PC than mpegs from any other source (DVD rips or movies I've shot with a DV camcorder, for example).

    I'd appreciate a bit of assistance if anyone knows what's happening here.

    Thanks in advance,
    Barry
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  29. rumplestiltskin, I've seen other hints that there's something wrong with the audio levels on the PVR-150 on some systems. There are some registry settings that look like they might control this:

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Servic es\Globespan\Parameters\ivac15\Driver]

    There are entries called (values from my PVR-250):

    HcwAudioFMAMPrescale = 0x00002401 (9217)
    HcwAudioNicamPrescale = 0x00005800 (22528)
    HcwAudioScart1Prescale = 0x00002a00 (10752)
    HcwAudioScart1PrescaleFM = 0x00005000 (20480)
    HcwAudioScart1Volume = 0x00007701 (30465)

    Do you have the same registry settings? I suspect the Prescale values are the ones to change.

    I saw this discussion about the PVR-USB2:

    http://www.hauppauge.co.uk/board/showthread.php?s=87f23b616b8a28ba63ad7658f70e985f&t=427&page=1

    They discuss a similar audio problem with the USB2 and mention some other registry sections. At least one person said resorting to an older version of the driver fixed the problem.

    I really think it's one of the Prescale values as those appear to used by the hardware to adjust the audio levels when converting from analog to digital. You might have to reboot for new values to take effect. I'd try it but I can't reboot right now...

    By the way, the WinTV2000 audio level control only controls the output volume on the computer, not the actual recording volume on the card (in the MPEG stream).
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