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  • fMF - Wednesday, November 18, 2009 - link

    Running WMC on my Windows 7 Ultimate x64 system I do not get the Extras Gallery feature. Under Extras I see only the Extras Library and the Internet TV beta. Forcing a download of updates per the article makes no difference. Anyone else seeing this issue? Reply
  • Alphafox78 - Tuesday, November 17, 2009 - link

    Netflix FTW!!!
    I used to care about digital cable but when you can watch movies and older tv shows for $9 a month with no commercials, who needs cable??
  • Lerianis - Monday, November 16, 2009 - link

    Instead of this Cablecard bull. You know that I have a tuners for my laptops but.... no Cablecard slot in them! Both my laptops tested as Cablecard-Ready today, but don't have any Cablecard slots in them..... and neither do most external tuners I have seen!

    What we really need is for Cablecard to be BUILT INTO THE TUNERS when they are sent out. Then, the number is just taken off the tuner and activated and BOOM! You are ready to go!
  • Casper42 - Saturday, November 14, 2009 - link

    Hey Ryan, if you have any contacts at MS in the MediaRoom division, ask them when they are going to release (I know it would be to providers and not directly to me) a Win7 IPTV Client for MediaRoom (aka AT&T U-Verse).

    My U-Verse DVR can record 4 concurrent shows, 2 of them being in HD, using the following crappy specs:
    300Mhz CPU as part of a SoC
    128MB of RAM
    PATA Hard Drive
    100Mbps Ethernet
    All managed by Windows CE 5.0

    I have also read some PR from MS that said they have released a MediaRoom client package for the Xbox360, which means you can turn it into a STB.

    I find it laughable that MS has not released a Windows client package for MC when most decent PCs these days have at least a 2Ghz Core2, 2GB of RAM, SATA3Gbps and a large number would have a Gigabit NIC.

    Packets are Packets, how hard is it to let my PC grab them rather than my DVR/STB?
  • initialised - Thursday, November 12, 2009 - link

    Will this work on VirginMedia in the UK? Reply
  • ViRGE - Friday, November 13, 2009 - link

    No, CableCard is a purely Yankee thing. Reply
  • 457R4LDR34DKN07 - Wednesday, November 11, 2009 - link

    I hope that what you say is true about more manufacturers rolling out cablecards but what about the tuners compatibility with tru2way? Any news about ati making a updated cable card tuner using the theater 750 or a single slot 2 cablecard version? Reply
  • mcnabney - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    I have a better solution.

    HD HomeRun
  • Roland00 - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    Sadly this is the truth Reply
  • Visual - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    I am very confused.

    Things seem like a mess to me even without involving a PC, for watching cable channels on a TV - without an external box, that is.
    A lot of new TVs come taunting "digital tuner" stuff, which often turns out to be useless.

    I don't understand a lot of the terminology when it comes to digital television, so not everything I ask may make sense. Please accept my apologies in advance.

    I get the impression that the whole CableCard deal should not concern me at all, and I should be looking for a DVB-C (probably also DVB-T, DVB-S) tuner with CI slot instead. But I am still posting this as I want to be sure.

    I am not in the USA, and have no clue what CableCard is. Here in Bulgaria we of course do have some digital cable television, and it is protected by some encryption requiring an external receiver box with a smart-card thing to decrypt it... but I wonder, is it the same thing? Or are there many different standards for this and CableCard is just one of them? Is it used outside of the USA? Why are you focusing your articles exclusively on this standard and not write something more general?

    Is DVB-C and Common Interface (CI) a different standard for the same thing and are they compatible to some degree? Or is it the same thing entirely? Or can one be using the other, for example can there be a CI-slot CAM module for CableCard? Or what's what?

    What other standards are there?

    For which of these standards will the mentioned ATI tuner work?
    For which of these standards are there already other PC tuners available?

    On and one last thing, what happens when you insert a CableCard module (or a CI-slot module, for that matter, as they are both physically the same slot) into a normal PCMCI slot that most any laptop has? Can you at least theoretically use it to decrypt a signal that you get from a standard digital tuner card that was meant to be used with unencrypted channels only?
  • DeesTroy - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    Cable Card is strictly a USA thing. Our government saw fit to require our cable companies to come up with some method to allow other devices to be used to watch cable TV besides the crappy boxes that they shove down the throats of most people.

    To others, some general statements:
    Centralized recording of TV with whole house distribution is where it is at and where the future of DVR should go. Having one interface, guide, and list of recorded shows is exceedingly nice. You should be able to record your shows and watch them on any TV in the house without having to fuss with anything. Media center provides this functionality, but it only works well with extenders. If you have 2 computers, you can watch unprotected TV on the second computer, but the second computer can't watch live TV shows or tell the first computer what shows to record. Total PITA and there's no reason Microsoft can't implement it, but they won't and won't tell us why. You won't be able to watch any protected shows on another computer, but you can with a Xbox or other extender. Other DVR software allows this functionality such as Sage, Media Portal, GBPVR, Myth, or Beyond TV. Unfortunately, those programs do not work with cable card, so if you want cable card, you must use Media Center and extenders.

    Wireless networking rarely works with HDTV. If you plan to use wireless, you best go with N and with a router that can put the N network on its own 5GHz band separate from the B/G traffic.
  • darkslyde - Friday, November 13, 2009 - link

    i really like the idea but that would mean implementation of a server of some sort. if MS would implement a media center server version for their win home server, that would really be a good way to realize that idea.

    anandtech, is there anyway y'all can do some sort of htpc revisited slash how-to in regards to a cetralized A/V home experience?

    thats been my project since day one.
    a "main" htpc in the living room that is capable of backing up/grabbing all media files from "satelite" computers (which WHS can already do). this main htpc must be able to run win media center (music, videos, tv, blu-ray/dvd, online content and 3rd-party wmc add-ons). as stated, the "satelite" computers or extenders has the ability to access a centralized guide; schedule shows that can be recorded (all satelite pc's will know which shows are already slotted, and let everyone know about show overlaps). the satelite pc's will be allowed to watch protected contents, but not be able to copy it (similar to itunes+appleTV). ofcourse, all shared media can be accessed according to DRM.

    why go through all the trouble? i call it house clouding. centralizing = savings. all media in one location (granted WHS allows sync/share/etc options on backing up), one 1 cable-connection (vs 5 cable cards for 5 pc's that are all recording the same shows). only 1 pc needs to stay on 24/7 (recording/backups/etc). also, the benefits of WHS utilities.

    anyone know of something like this that isnt linux? and before you give me the linux speech, try teaching my computer inept gf then maybe... thank you dual booting.
  • NKnight - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    Very useful news. My HTPC just passed using an Nvidia GeForce 9400 integrated video chipset outputting over HDMI to my Kuro. I think I may just pull the trigger on a tuner now. Reply
  • DigitalFreak - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    FYI - I just ran the advisor on my PC that has a Geforce 8800GTX and Dell 2405 monitor connected via DVI. The 2405 is NOT HDCP compliant, but the advisor said that I met all recommendations and enabled CableCard support. I don't actually have a CC tuner, but it looks like it will work. Reply
  • xp3nd4bl3 - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Mine also says I'm "already" configured for CableCARD. Sweet. Reply
  • Zero110 - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Been waiting for this for what seems like an eternity, but any word on two-way communication and VOD with this? It's been a long time since I researched DVR's, but my understanding is that Tivo still can't do VOD. It's the last niggling reason not to replace my hideous Comcast box. Reply
  • SloppyG - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Yeah, I would be interested if this would support VOD.

    I currently use a HD PVR and DVBLogic to get HD into my HTPC. Works great but having to grab a second remote to work the VOD menu (with a 3-4 second delay between presses) is a little tiring.

    Added a 360 recently as an extender and am amazed by how well it works. Streamed HD fine over wifi but I went ethernet to reduce some menu latency I was experiencing. The fan (jasper chipset) is still a little on the loud side, however.

    Great setup...
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Sorry guys, no VOD. For that you need True2Way, which is a whole new can of worms. Reply
  • jav6454 - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Yay! Finally I can a card that can do what my DVR already does /sarcasm. Now, in all seriousness, although it's a good thing I find it hampering having to deal with ecryption on many channels.

  • jav6454 - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Forgot to mention any of those cards can carry quite the tag. Reply
  • erple2 - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    That seems to be a bit excessive for the ability to watch CableCARD protected content. A fully paid for TiVo HD costs 700 dollars. That also buys you the TiVo service, however. I suppose a valid argument can be made that the TiVo can't do as much as a full-blown PC (built in Blu-Ray player, streaming "other" streams from the intertubes, surf the intertubes, etc), but the cost of entry is now quite a bit less of a difference for the PC HT.

    I think that I might be willing to pay 250 for a multichannel capable tuner card, not 500 for "equivalent" ability (plus the potential headaches of installing 2 such tuners in my PC). As a minor cost, my cable provider (Verizon FIOS) charges per card, not per stream, so the multistream card costs me "half" per month as 2 single stream cards.
  • Colin1497 - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Exactly. I stream you-name-it from my PC to my TiVo already. I guess this product is basically for those who just have to have something to tinker with. Reply
  • numberoneoppa - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link">

    TV Tuner card on steroids.
  • mckirkus - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Interesting tidbit from the FAQ:
    "A: The Ceton Multi-Channel Cable TV Card takes advantage of standard Media Center Extenders including the Xbox 360 to distribute live and recorded programs to multiple TV sets in the home. No special installation or configuration of the extenders is required by the Ceton card.

    Depending on which versions of Windows 7 and the Ceton card you have, you will be able to distribute either 2, 4 or 6 live TV channels around the home with a single CableCARD installed and using a single RF connection.

    So in a typical 4-tuner home installation, you could have 4 different TV sets in 4 different rooms, each watching or recording (or some combination of watching and recording) a different show in HD at the same time."

    I plan to buy one and use My XBox 360 as a cable box / DVR in my bedroom. That'll save two cable boxes which works out to $22 a month or ~$250 a year.

    My only concern is bandwidth to my bedroom, I can't currently stream hi-def MKV files via wifi to my XBox 360 extender without buffering. Also, Xbox 360 chokes if you have a lot of content.
  • numberoneoppa - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    I would highly recommend just wiring your house for ethernet using a roll of cat6 or 5e. It comes out to be around 125 bucks for everything needed during the project (1000 ft cable, connectors, crimper, wall gangs, covers) and it's totally worth it in the long run! Reply
  • glugglug - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    Don't know how you are getting that it is $125. I wired my place myself a few weeks ago. 500 ft cable was bundled with a bag full of connectors, a crimping tool, and a cable tester for $35. If you search online there are some good deals on this stuff.

    But yeah, wireless is way too flaky for media streaming. At a minimum if you are going to go wireless you need to go wireless N instead of wireless g to have enough bandwidth, with dual band routers & access points set on 5GHz instead of the default 2.4GHz band so they don't get interference from microwaves, bluetooth devices, legacy wireless g networks & devices, etc. HD streaming requires 10MBps. Yes, I am aware wireless G stuff is marketed as 56MBps, but that is only theoretical when you have no interference, your signal doesn't need to go through any walls, etc, and is very far from reality.
  • dagamer34 - Wednesday, November 11, 2009 - link

    It's not just the speed you have to think about when going wireless, but the potential of data packet loss. When streaming HD video, lost data packets are going to cause stuttering like you'd never believe.

    Though I don't how you got the price down to $35. You're at least going to need to get a gigabit switch to route all your cables, and that'll swallow your $35 whole.
  • mckirkus - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Forgot to mention... Anybody want to bet that the next generation games consoles are going to have cable card slots built in? Reply
  • gcannon - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Cannon PC ( have the internal and external versions of the ATI Digital CableCARD tuners available ($249) Reply
  • Spivonious - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    I'm glad to see the restrictions lifted. Now we just need something worth watching on those encrypted channels. Reply

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