Showing posts with label ATSC. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ATSC. Show all posts

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Windows Media Center Setup

I have now been using my Windows Media Center setup without cable television signal for a few weeks now, and I am pretty happy with it.  I am not missing anything not having a cable source.  This is the description of my setup.

Over the Air Content


HDHomeRun


We are using a HDHomeRun Dual for our ATSC source.  The HDHomeRun allows me to keep the antenna in the attic, and the PC downstairs, without having to run a antenna drop down the several floors.  It will also be possible for us to add an additonal HDHomeRun if we want to add extra tuners.  The tuners on the HDHomeRun can also be used on other computers in the house, though I am not currently using that feature.

My recommendation for anyone using an HDHomeRun is to use Gigabit Ethernet for the drop between the main network switch and the Media Center PC.  When recording two 19Mbs ATSC streams, you will want to leave enough network bandwidth, so if anything is happening on you network, the video quality is not affected.  For example, on our Media Center I want to make sure that I can record two shows, while the Media Center is backed up, movie that is stored on the Windows Home Server is being watched one the Media Center, and some recorded content from the Media Center is being watched on one of the Media Center Extenders.

I was seeing some degradation of video quality when using 100 Mb Ethernet, but haven't had a problem since upgrading to Gigabit Ethernet.  I haven't upgrade my whole network to Gigabit, but that isn't a problem as most of the other devices can barely saturate a 100Mbs drop.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

HDHomeRun for Media Center

As I have mentioned before, I am looking to cancel our cable TV service.  This weekend I purchased a HDHomeRun Dual network tuner.  The HDHomeRun is an ATSC and QAM tuner that you connect to your network.  You are able to access the tuners with any Mac, PC or linux computer on the network.

I installed it in our attic, where our networking panel is, and the installation was very easy.  All I had to do was connect the antenna cables and connect the tuner to the network.  When I installed the software on one of my computers, I was able to scan for channels and make sure that the antenna was pointed in the right direction.

I was then able to install the tuner software on our Windows 7 Media Center.  The tuners were instantly recognized, and the Microsoft's program guide had all of the data for those channels.  The quality of video is very good.  I can tell that the video is not as compressed as it is through Comcast.

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