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  1. Member gastrof's Avatar
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    I'm thinking of using the new computer for recording and storing TV. Naturally, Microsoft has gone and murdered Windows Media Center before I even had a chance to learn about it.

    Can someone tell me if there's software out there, free or otherwise, that does everything Media Center did...however much that was?

    If I go the direction I'm thinking of, I guess the computer will end up needing both a tuner and capture card, but also a way to have audio and video fed to it from a cable box.

    Any suggestions, advice, etc. will be appreciated.

    The new computer will have a micro ATX mobo, using an AMD AM3+ processor, 3.5ghz six core processor. It'll have 8 gigs of RAM, but initially (at least) it'll only have a 32bit version of Windows 10, likely it'll only be able to use about 4gb of the memory. Power supply will be 500W, Corsair.
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    NextPVR works with most TV tuner cards and some of Hauppauge's HDMI capture devices.

    You should probably plan to pay for guide service. I'm using Schedules Direct. A one-year subscription costs $25.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 5th Jun 2016 at 02:11.
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    NextPVR works with CableCARD tuners and encrypted cable signals too. It does not work for recording copy-once programming, but neither does HDHomerun DVR at this point. The HDHomerun DVR preview may have the ability to record copy-once programming within a few weeks, but it isn't there yet, and there are lots of bugs to fix. Plus, Silicondust still has to submit their product for CableLabs certification.

    The Android version may be completed before the Windows 10 Universal app. Microsoft does not allow a Windows Universal app to request/verify HDCP operation, and until that is addressed by MS, the Windows 10 app cannot pass CableLabs certification.
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  4. Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    It does not work for recording copy-once programming
    I know we've discussed this before... From our cable company, almost everything but our local broadcast stations is marked copy-once. It used to be that encryption and copy-once went hand-in-hand. But now everything is encrypted, even local broadcast channels. So right now our only option is WMC on an older version of Windows.
    Last edited by jagabo; 5th Jun 2016 at 12:23.
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    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    It does not work for recording copy-once programming
    I know we've discussed this before... From our cable company, almost everything but our local broadcast stations is marked copy-once. It used to be that encryption and copy-once went hand-in-hand. But now everything is encrypted, even local broadcast channels. So right now our only option is WMC on an older version of Windows.
    Yes. Silicondust hopes to change that in the near future, but at this point it is still true. If what I'm reading on the HDHomerun DVR forum is accurate, Android could well be the best platform, but it needs hardware with the ability to do a good job with interlaced MPEG-2 content. So far, the NVIDIA Shield Android TV product has the best performance on the Android side.

    [Edit]My provider encrypts all its channels as well, but at present only premium content is copy-once protected. That could change, which is why I keep following HDHomerun DVR's progress, and why I'm holding onto my Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center licenses for my existing PCs.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 5th Jun 2016 at 12:45.
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  6. Member gastrof's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies!

    I have no problem recording even an HD broadcast as SD. My cable box feeds into an HDMI to composite/s-video converter, and that feeds into a DVD recorder. Somehow in the conversion, copy-guard is lost, so that's not a problem. *grin* I can easily use that source, along with an antenna, in recording to a computer.

    I just don't know what software and hardware to get. (I know OF capture cards and TV tuners for computers, but I've never done this before. Have no idea what to get.)

    Is there anything else anyone can tell me in addition to the above replies?
    Last edited by gastrof; 5th Jun 2016 at 19:53.
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    Hauppauge makes two good multi-tuner internal PCI-e devices. The WinTV-QuadHD 01609 has 4 ATSC/QAM tuners. The WinTV HVR 2255 offers 2 ATSC/QAM tuners plus SD analog capture. Silicondust makes a good external device with 2 ATSC tuners, the HDHomeRun CONNECT HDHR4-2US, which connects to the PC via Ethernet.

    NextPVR works with all of the above. If you want an HDMI capture device, the Hauppauge HD PVR Colossus, HD-PVR 2, HD-PVR Colossus 2, and HD PVR 60 are all supported by NextPVR too. NextPVR can also work as a TV back end for Kodi and MediaPortal, if you like Kodi's or Media Portal's user interface better.

    SiliconDust's HDHomeRun DVR project is only designed to support SiliconDust tuners.

    Although there is other Media Center/DVR software available, I haven't used it or studied it, so I do not know nearly as much about it.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 6th Jun 2016 at 09:25. Reason: fix bad edit
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  8. Member Krispy Kritter's Avatar
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    There are still a few years of support for Win7, and a few more for Win8 (although there is apparently a few quirks/issues using Win8) so that you can continue using WMC.

    I'd expect a much better replacement for WMC by the time Win7 support officially ends.
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    Originally Posted by Krispy Kritter View Post
    There are still a few years of support for Win7, and a few more for Win8 (although there is apparently a few quirks/issues using Win8) so that you can continue using WMC.

    I'd expect a much better replacement for WMC by the time Win7 support officially ends.
    There are already several fairly mature replacements for WMC, as long as there is no need to support CableCARD and record digital CATV programming flagged copy-once. J RiverMedia Center is paid software that is supposedly pretty good although I have never tried it. However, it has no support for recording copy-once programming via CableCARD.

    I have read that there is a $75K fee per attempt at CableLabs certification, which would make adding that feature an unattractive proposition. WMC is so far the only software to attain the necessary certification.

    The main problem with Windows 8, is that Microsoft stopped selling the WMC app last year.
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    This works for me.
    http://www.windowscentral.com/install-media-center-windows-10

    This thread has been a big help.
    I've followed it for the last year or so.
    https://forums.whirlpool.net.au/forum-replies.cfm?t=2409331&p=39
    Have bought, through eBay, a couple of the recommended devices.
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    Originally Posted by pcspeak View Post
    This works for me.
    http://www.windowscentral.com/install-media-center-windows-10

    This thread has been a big help.
    I've followed it for the last year or so.
    https://forums.whirlpool.net.au/forum-replies.cfm?t=2409331&p=39
    Have bought, through eBay, a couple of the recommended devices.
    The last I heard WMC only really works as a media player when installed on a Windows 10 system. It is severely crippled as a DVR.
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  12. ArgusTV I'v being using it for years now, works like a charm.
    Mind you, you will need mdapi+ and acamd as wel.
    If you need assistance to set things up just let me know.
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  13. Member Krispy Kritter's Avatar
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    The only real replacement that I've seen so far, is the HDHomerun software. But it is young and is missing features that I require. ie: CableCARD, DRM, and record digital CATV programming flagged copy-once

    Win7 and WMC works very well. Even if you had to buy Win7, it's still cheap when you consider the price will be spread across the number of years of life it has remaining. When something better comes along, you would likely want a fresh OS install anyway, so it would then be the perfect time to upgrade the OS.
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  14. Member
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    Originally Posted by Krispy Kritter View Post
    The only real replacement that I've seen so far, is the HDHomerun software. But it is young and is missing features that I require. ie: CableCARD, DRM, and record digital CATV programming flagged copy-once.
    True, it isn't yet a WMC replacement, and it is still a little buggy. CableCARD works, but only for copy freely channels. Watching/recording copy-once channels and DRM'd media playback are not yet implemented. Until the software is ready for CableLabs certification, I doubt those features will be available for testing in the preview.
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