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  • DFranch - Friday, May 14, 2004 - link

    One feature which Snapstream still does not have that Sage Tv has had for some time is multiple tuners. I have 2 tuners in my machine and in 5 months I have only had 2 conflicts on my machine.

    Please do a review of Sage Tv 2.0. It does not seem to get nearly as much press as Snapstream, but it is a really execellent product.
  • glennpratt - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    JackHawksmoor: x86 machines actually can turn themselves on, one of the machines I had even let you set timers in the BIOS. x86 has nothing to do with it by they way, its a function of power managent. More importantly newer PC's support S3 standby which uses almost no power and restores in seconds. My MCE machine with an AXP 2000+ actually goes to standby and restores faster then a TiVo (which also just goes to standby, doesn't actually turn off).

    The MCE remote has a power button on it, push it, it goes to standby. It will power back up if it needs to record a show or when you push the button again.
  • glennpratt - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    BTW, MCE 2004 now has an HDTV Tuner.
  • segagenesis - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    First decent review of Beyond TV ive read. Im not sure if SageTV is any better (a review of this in the future could help?). I lack the time to setup MythTV and this would be a good alternative, and I dont really care much about wanting multiple tuner support since I already have a PVR from my cable company. It would really complement things by allowing me to record shows I can put to disc later, something I cant do otherwise unless I had ReplayTV or Tivo with hacks. Reply
  • JackHawksmoor - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    Sorry! I keep thinking of other features I want, and the review isn't clear on. Can this software initiate a dial-up connection to grab program guides? That's another needed feature (unless you've got broadband). Reply
  • JackHawksmoor - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    Whoops, one piece of information I'd like to know is what other formats "ShowSqueeze" can convert to. It would rock if you could set this to automatically convert some shows to like a Divx or MPEG-1 format for a Palm OS unit (the review only mentions Windows Media, and dosen't actually specify that it allows settings for smaller screens, etc.).

    I'd also like a feature to automatically set a show to get copied to a DVD-RW after it's been recorded (so I could watch it on a TV in a different room, etc.)
  • JackHawksmoor - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    Great review! Really informative!

    I'd LOVE to make a PVR out of spare parts, but unfortunatly there's no way for an x86 system to turn itself on for a recording, and I don't want to leave a system running all the time. I'd probably do it otherwise.

    (Technically I think someone could take advantage of features in most BIOS like "wake on network access", etc. Include some piece of hardware that does nothing but wake up the computer-software on the computer tells that piece of hardware when the next time the computer needs to be turned on is, and then the device triggers a wake on LAN (or whatever) to wake the computer up at that time). COULD probably be done.

    I think current Macintosh's can wake themselves up at prescribed times, and I've got an older PowerMac in the closet, so maybe I should look into that...
  • glennpratt - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    Web control is available for Windows Media Center 2004.

    Also, a proof of concept has shown that HDTV is possible in MCE 2004 if the manufacturers would write BDA drivers for HDTV cards. With the SDK its also pretty easy to write programs for MCE which have access to alot of the things MCE does.

    I imagine, the future of HDTV on the computer will involve HDTV analog inputs (Component or RGBHV) from your cable or satelite box to avoid broadcast flags. It would be nice to stream the digital HD stream directly to the hard drive, then simply play it back, but I imagine the industry will never allow pay TV computer decoder cards.
  • orogogus - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link


    in all likelihood, probably never. You'd need a HDTV capture card, that was HDCP enabled (never going to happen) or a tuner that could tune in pay-channel HDTV (satellite or cable- QAM). They don't exist (well, the FusionIII has QAM but it really doesn't work 100% and it will only tune unencrypted channels)- probably run into HDCP problems here anyway cause the network will likely turn it on for pay channels (not to mention encryption). However, if they ever broadcast Sopranos on over the air channels, you could do it now or in the future, since HDCP shouldn't ever be applied to OTA content. Cheers
  • buleyb - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    agreed #6, MythTV, once setup properly, is the best option for making a HTPC Reply
  • batorok - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    as a Sagetv user I'm pretty miffed they didn't compare the two. Sagetv 2.0 has a really nice new interface, handles multimedia (pics, mp3z, movies, dvds including vob files) pretty well, has multituner support, and better image quality of viewed tv (I demoed both before buying sage). Since tv is what it's all about, the picture quality is what's important to me. Reply
  • reboos - Thursday, May 13, 2004 - link

    MythTv is very nice. Reply
  • mcveigh - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 - link

    good question crazy_vag

    I don't think snapstream supports HD capture cards
  • crazy_vag - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 - link

    When will I be able to record Soprano's in HDTV on HTPC??? Reply
  • mcveigh - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 - link

    I think you should consider comparing it to tivo/replay as I think this is more what it is aimed at replacing.

    also I would like to see more info about multile tuners.

    how about a shoot out of personal video software in the future?

    SnapStream vs. sage TV vs. windows MCE vs. ????
  • Jeff7181 - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 - link

    Wonderful review. Looks like a very robust piece of software. If I was in the market to build a HTPC I'd probably buy it. From what I see, I like the information windows... they have a little bit too much info, but at least they're transparent so you can still see the show... unlike Comcast the last time I paid for digital cable. Reply
  • llamas - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 - link

    Are you considering a review of SageTV 2.0 (just released)? It would interesting to hear how it compares with BTV3. SageTV supports multiple tuners, and has client software with the same interface as the server. Reply

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