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quality posts: 15 Private Messages WootBot

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SiliconDust HD Digital Tuner

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Quality Posts


louisrai


quality posts: 1 Private Messages louisrai

I don't get it....what does it play? All the HD channels?

dkowal


quality posts: 5 Private Messages dkowal

Can this work on your computer? I would assume you need some kind of card in your machine. Im not technical; sorry. Thank you.

dak970

bpr2


quality posts: 181 Private Messages bpr2

Aw shucks! From the thumbnail, I thought these would be some kind of handcuffs.

that was fun while it lasted!

DaZoneRanger


quality posts: 45 Private Messages DaZoneRanger

Does the three tuner version need a cable card, in order to simultaneously access three channels? I mean, can I use it to access three over the air channels at once, or is it just for 1 cable and 2 over the air channels at once? I'm definitely going to buy one of these, but I don't have cable, so if the three channel one isn't going to be of any use to me...

istrebitjel


quality posts: 6 Private Messages istrebitjel

Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004HO58SO/ - $88.85 - 4.3 stars (2 tuner version)
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004HKIB6E/ - $160.22 - 4.6 stars (3 tuner version)

kd1357


quality posts: 5 Private Messages kd1357

Under stats the Prime states that it requires a cable card, so can it not function solely using an antenna for OTA channels?

ckoz1187


quality posts: 5 Private Messages ckoz1187
louisrai wrote:I don't get it....what does it play? All the HD channels?



No, it will just pick up basic cable channels that are broadcast in HD. Many new TV's already have one built it so check yours to be sure. My TV does have one built in an I get 7 HD channels. Woo!

smigit2002


quality posts: 12 Private Messages smigit2002
louisrai wrote:I don't get it....what does it play? All the HD channels?



Ok, for the confused...
The dual tuner version plays Clear QAM (aka, unencrypted) and ATSC channels. Basically, these are all the local, free channels that you can probably get over the air via antenna, and also tend to be carried by cable provider's lines.
The three tuner version allows you to plug in what's called a CableCard. This allows it to decrypt cable channels. You get a cable card from your cable provider.

So how does it work? You plug in an antenna or your cable into the box, and plug the ethernet into your network. Now any computer on the network can watch TV.
I personally use Windows Media Center on multiple computers around my house. This allows me to watch TV wherever I want, and also doubles as a DVR on my primary computer.
I do not have the cable card version, but basically, the advantage of this is that you are not paying the cable company to rent their cable box. This can save you around $15/month. There is generally a small fee for the cable card, but in the end, it's considerably cheaper, and you have a customizable, upgradable DVR (via your computer).

Anyways, overall, it's a pretty awesome product.

TheEndless


quality posts: 14 Private Messages TheEndless
dkowal wrote:Can this work on your computer? I would assume you need some kind of card in your machine. Im not technical; sorry. Thank you.


Yes, it will work with your computer. No, you don't need a card in your machine. The HDHomerun tunes to channels available via your cable connection (clear QAM if no cablecard, all in the cablecard version), and makes them available on your home network. To access them on your computer, all you need is the software SiliconDust provides, or any number of desktop media center applications that support it (http://www.silicondust.com/support/hdhomerun/instructions/).

TheEndless

DaZoneRanger


quality posts: 45 Private Messages DaZoneRanger

To end my debate, I figure it doesn't make sense to get the three tuner, since I don't have cable, because I can use two of the dual tuners together for the same price.

shaneberto


quality posts: 0 Private Messages shaneberto

Will this enable my 11 year old non digital signal capable tv to receive digital signal? I never bought the box when the switchover happened because I had cable. I've since cancelled cable. I have an antenna but no box for the signal. If this meets my needs I'll be stoked.

smigit2002


quality posts: 12 Private Messages smigit2002
kd1357 wrote:Under stats the Prime states that it requires a cable card, so can it not function solely using an antenna for OTA channels?



Honestly not sure about this one, as I do not own one. However, SiliconDust does not say anything on their webpage regarding the use of it WITHOUT a cable card, so I'd venture to guess it needs one. However, at this price, picking up two dual tuners for OTA broadcasts is quite cheap!

smigit2002


quality posts: 12 Private Messages smigit2002
shaneberto wrote:Will this enable my 11 year old non digital signal capable tv to receive digital signal? I never bought the box when the switchover happened because I had cable. I've since cancelled cable. I have an antenna but no box for the signal. If this meets my needs I'll be stoked.



Unfortunately, not really. Unless you have a computer plugged into your 11 year old computer. What you need is a DTV converter box. It'd be around $40 from Walmart . Note: I didn't do any price searching, so there might be a better deal than that one. However, my girlfriend's version of that box seems to work well enough...

kliu0x52


quality posts: 4 Private Messages kliu0x52
shaneberto wrote:Will this enable my 11 year old non digital signal capable tv to receive digital signal? I never bought the box when the switchover happened because I had cable. I've since cancelled cable. I have an antenna but no box for the signal. If this meets my needs I'll be stoked.



No.

1) HD HomeRun is connected to the raw TV signal (antenna or cable)

2) HD HomeRun puts the digital video into your *home network* via Ethernet.

3) Some device on your home network (a computer or certain other devices) receives the digital video and does whatever with it (save it to a hard drive and/or output it to a monitor).


This is NOT a device for TVs! Now, if you have a TV that is hooked up to a HTPC (home theater PC), then that PC can receive the video and output it onto your TV...

Cliffjumper


quality posts: 5 Private Messages Cliffjumper

I've had the dual-tuner version for a few months, and I love it. I have two Windows 7 machines (one wired, one wireless) with WMC pulling HD channels off of a single unit simultaneously, with no lag or freezing.

The dual-tuner model, for those asking, turns any ClearQAM channels on your cable system into accessible data streams on your home network. That means that you can view these channels on any computer on your network by using either the included HDHomeRun software, Windows Media Center, or other compatible third-party software. No additional hardware is needed!

ClearQAM channels are the ones that are unencrypted by your cable provider. You can check to see which channels are in the clear by attaching your cable directly to your HDTV (bypassing the cable box entirely), scanning, and seeing what you come up with. For instance, I get all broadcast networks and a handful of international news channels.

I don't own the triple tuner model, but since it has a CableCard slot, I imagine it's capable of tuning all channels, ClearQAM and encrypted alike. Call your cable company to make sure they offer CableCards!

Also, a quick note about the number of tuners. Each tuner allows a single data stream at a time. So, with two tuners, you can have two computers watching two different channels, or one computer watching one channel and recording another channel. The three tuner model can either stream to three computers, two computers with one recording, one computer recording two shows and showing one, etc etc etc.

EDIT: I should add that the device itself isn't wireless. Once you connect the tuner to your router, any device that connects to that router can access the tuners. Even on WiFi.

kliu0x52


quality posts: 4 Private Messages kliu0x52

Since this gets asked a lot, there are four kinds of TV signals.

1) Analog (no longer available via antenna, still available in some places over cable) - This will NOT work here.

2) Digital antenna (ATSC) - You must use the $50 dual-tuner.

3) Unencrypted digital cable (basic tier / ClearQAM) - You can use EITHER tuner for this. WARNING: The FCC is revoking the rules that prevent cable companies from encrypting basic-tier cable (the FCC is in the pocket of the cable cos, unfortunately). So ClearQAM, sadly, does not have a bright future.

4) Premium cable - You need the Prime tuner, and you need to get a Cable Card from your cable company.

jefffurry


quality posts: 2 Private Messages jefffurry

I have the three tuner version (HD Homerun Prime), and I like it.

Either of these only work with DIGITAL signals. The DUAL will work with a digital antenna or unencrypted (clear QAM) digital cable. The HD Homerun Prime only works with digital cable.

My cable provider doesn't offer much in the way of Clear QAM (unencrypted) digital channels, so I got a cable card from my provider. The setup was not smooth, because mine was the first of these devices ever to be hooked up to my provider.

Operation is pretty good. I can watch cable TV on my computer, and use it as a DVR. I'm using Microsoft Media Center, which works okay, but it will occasionally "lose" the signal, or tell me I'm not authorized to receive it. That could be a device problem, but it's probably a problem with MS Media Center.

I haven't hooked up any of the other computers in the house, but now that the cable card is set up, it should be pretty easy.

Overall, I'd give it a 4 stars. It lets me watch TV on my computer. Digital channels only, including all of the digital music channels, plus a couple of clear QAM channels that the regular cable box doesn't see. If I had extra channels (HBO, etc), I'm sure that I could watch those as well.

Three tuners means I can watch one show and record two others, or that three separate computers can watch something, or any combination of those.

Tony2


quality posts: 1 Private Messages Tony2

I've previously owned PCI and PCIe tuner cards for Windows Media Center. They have complicatd drivers, and only work on that PC.

I now use a HD prime (3 tuner), and I love it! I am considering buying another one so that I have six tuners available.

You can browse the built-in web server and see which computers are using which tuners.

You download a small 5MB download, then the tuners appear to be locally installed tuners in your PC. Windows Media Center sees/uses the tuners perfectly.

I'll never use a PCI or USB tuner card again!

A few notes:
- If two seperate PCs are watching the same channel, two tuners will be in use. It would be nice if the device was smart enough to share a tuner, but it doesn't.

- The specs indicate that the HD Prime only works with a cableCARD. However, when you set it up, you specify clearQAM or cableCARD for each tuner. I was successfully using the clearQAM tuner to watch TV until the cable guy showed up with the cableCARD.

- Federal Law requires all cable companies to provide cablecards (from what I researched), so that shouldn't be a problem. You may have to fight with the cable company though before they acknowledge that cablecard exists. Once I was transferred to the "cable card" department of my cable company, it went very smoothly. The installer had done many cablecard installs, and was very knowledgeable. But, he had never seen the homerun device, and he was impressed by the versatility of it.

- Windows media center and the homerun device respect the "do-no-copy" flag. So, for me, the video files created by windows only play on that computer (and extenders), for most channels. Local stations are not protected, but most other stations are.

- Silicon Dust tech support is knowledgeable and fast. they respond to email usually within 1 hour. no phone support though.

- most cable companies require a SDV device that connects to the USB port on the homerun. it should be provided at no extra cost by the cable company.

wondabread


quality posts: 0 Private Messages wondabread

Looking at using this for an HTPC and have a question:
1: Is it possible to split a cable line coming from my satellite (Dish Network) just before it goes into my whole house DVR in order to send the signal to the silicondust device without any issue?

While getting rid of the DVR is optimal, for me, it's quite impossible. However, this would add a significant amount of versatility to my media pc and resolve the few recording conflicts our house tends to have.

Thanks!

CoffinDweller


quality posts: 0 Private Messages CoffinDweller
wondabread wrote:Looking at using this for an HTPC and have a question:
1: Is it possible to split a cable line coming from my satellite (Dish Network) just before it goes into my whole house DVR in order to send the signal to the silicondust device without any issue?
Thanks!



From SiliconDust's website. "HDHomeRun PRIME (3 Tuners) is not not compatible with antennas, satellite TV (DirecTV/Dish Network), or IPTV services such as AT&T U-Verse."

lightman2


quality posts: 0 Private Messages lightman2

My understanding is all three tuners are equal, they can access Over-the-air, if you have a cable card, all can access cable channels, mix and match.

DaZoneRanger wrote:Does the three tuner version need a cable card, in order to simultaneously access three channels? I mean, can I use it to access three over the air channels at once, or is it just for 1 cable and 2 over the air channels at once? I'm definitely going to buy one of these, but I don't have cable, so if the three channel one isn't going to be of any use to me...



birdoprey5


quality posts: 11 Private Messages birdoprey5

Does anyone know if with the Dual Tuner model I can watch LIVE TV on an Xbox 360?

kenelbow


quality posts: 1 Private Messages kenelbow

So if I plug this tuner into my network can I access the signals it gets directly from my xbox 360? Our do I still need to use windows media center on my PC as a type of middleware?

j647


quality posts: 1 Private Messages j647

Not being a smarty pants, but does this work with a mac? Really. I didn't find any OS X software on the SiliconDust site.

spryguy


quality posts: 1 Private Messages spryguy
j647 wrote:Not being a smarty pants, but does this work with a mac? Really. I didn't find any OS X software on the SiliconDust site.



Wondering the same thing. Love to get TV to my iMac.

spryguy


quality posts: 1 Private Messages spryguy
j647 wrote:Not being a smarty pants, but does this work with a mac? Really. I didn't find any OS X software on the SiliconDust site.



It seems that the EyeTV software will only work with the Prime (3-tuner) on a Windows 7 machine. So, if you have a Mac OSX the two-tuner is pretty much the way to go.

I suppose you could spin a Windows 7 VMware machine up and use the Prime that way.

Link with much of the dirty details.
http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1306119

radi0j0hn


quality posts: 96 Private Messages radi0j0hn
shaneberto wrote:Will this enable my 11 year old non digital signal capable tv to receive digital signal? I never bought the box when the switchover happened because I had cable. I've since cancelled cable. I have an antenna but no box for the signal. If this meets my needs I'll be stoked.



If not, check Goodwill. They are piling up there cheap,

acpress.com Not cute, but useful.

deh5557


quality posts: 0 Private Messages deh5557

OK, so now this thing is my tuner and dvr. I don't watch tv sitting at the computer desk. Where is the remote? There has to be another way to change channels than the keyboard or mouse?

slin9


quality posts: 2 Private Messages slin9

in for 1. the 3 prime. I just read about 20 reviews on amazon and determined the following: works well with comcast/xfinity, need a m-card from them (free or $3 ontime charge), need WMC - preferably on win7 or 8, need HDMI out from HTPC, can watch on any PC in my house at the same time, need patience when calling to activate cable card.

other thoughts: i hope the refurb doesnt die (33% savings is alot), i cant leave comcast b/c of the new comcast sports net (need rockets games), HD on all my TV's via PC's!!!

spryguy


quality posts: 1 Private Messages spryguy

Does this come with the EyeTV3 software? Mac and PC?

kuhnhenn


quality posts: 0 Private Messages kuhnhenn
ckoz1187 wrote:No, it will just pick up basic cable channels that are broadcast in HD. Many new TV's already have one built it so check yours to be sure. My TV does have one built in an I get 7 HD channels. Woo!



It will pick up all your HD channels from your cable, but you have to lease or purchase a card from your cable provider, you will NOT be able to use on demand features, does not work well with older routers, needs its own dedicated ethernet cable besides the one going to the computer. Plus a WIFI connection to that computer. Integration problems with Windows Media Center make it tough to get back up and running after down times with cable provider. If cable goes down, and comes back on you have to play with network settings to get your programs to record through Windows Media Center

whatsamattaU


quality posts: 1071 Private Messages whatsamattaU

368 reviews, 4 eggs/5 for the dual tuner, but no price to compare to the $49.99 here
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16815327005&name=Video-Devices-TV-Tuners

$129.99 on sellout woot in July for the 3 tuner: vs. $99.99 today
http://sellout.woot.com/forums/viewpost.aspx?postid=5071368

and $149.99 in April (*no comments available)
http://www.woot.com/offers/silicondust-hdhomerun-prime-tuner

but that page does have the shorter HomeRun Prime product guide in pdf:
http://www.silicondust.com/images/hdhomerun/QS_HDHomeRun_PRIME.pdf
and product video


bye

kenelbow


quality posts: 1 Private Messages kenelbow
kenelbow wrote:So if I plug this tuner into my network can I access the signals it gets directly from my xbox 360? Our do I still need to use windows media center on my PC as a type of middleware?



To answer my own question for anybody else who is wondering, the channels received by this tuner are accessible by an Xbox 360 (or other media center extender) only through a PC running windows media center. Not a huge deal for me though, so I'm in for one.

Edbert


quality posts: 0 Private Messages Edbert
kliu0x52 wrote:
2) HD HomeRun puts the digital video into your *home network* via Ethernet.



That killed the buy for me, I have gig-E in the room with the TV (currently used by the 802.11 box behind the Cisco-ASA which is behind the U-Verse box) but at opposite ends of the room. If this box could inject the stream via WiFi I'd buy it.

eckerput


quality posts: 8 Private Messages eckerput
kuhnhenn wrote:It will pick up all your HD channels from your cable, but you have to lease or purchase a card from your cable provider, you will NOT be able to use on demand features, does not work well with older routers, needs its own dedicated ethernet cable besides the one going to the computer. Plus a WIFI connection to that computer. Integration problems with Windows Media Center make it tough to get back up and running after down times with cable provider. If cable goes down, and comes back on you have to play with network settings to get your programs to record through Windows Media Center



I have had an HD Homerun Prime for over a year and haven't had any special network issues. I also have an old (5 yr) Linksys router. There are no restart issues for me when cable or power goes out, it just magically starts working again. Your recording PC needs to be hooked to the network and the Prime needs to be hooked to the network, both via cables to have it work reliably. The throughput reliablity required for HD TV makes WIFI very problematic.

The big issues almost everyone has is getting the cable company to stage the cable card reliably. The Silicondust support forum is a great help with issues. Once you get it working though it generally works perfectly.

viviankb


quality posts: 0 Private Messages viviankb

Can someone clarify for the non-knowledgeable?

I don't have cable. Or a TV.

If I want to watch TV on my Mac, I have to get a separate digital antenna (to get TV channels) and then get this dual tuner to make my computer able to "see" the TV channels? Is that correct?

Thanks!

Pufferfishy


quality posts: 39 Private Messages Pufferfishy

Two questions:

1) Does it work with FiOS?
- it has a cable card slot, so I assume it does, just not for PPV

2) Can you EDIT what it records? i.e. remove the commercials.
I guess what I'm wondering is does it record in some standard simple format (MP4, MJPEG, etc) or something nearly impossible to work with like AC3

You've been put on posting probation for this post

jeraden


quality posts: 5 Private Messages jeraden

Anyone that has the Prime with FIOS - can you get AMC-HD on it? I've had it for several months, and think it's great overall. But it won't tune to AMC-HD - just wondering if anyone else ran into that and if there was a way to fix it.

edit: nm, I just looked on the silicondust forums and there is an updated firmware to fix this issue, will have to try that tonight.

hyperz69


quality posts: 0 Private Messages hyperz69
Edbert wrote:That killed the buy for me, I have gig-E in the room with the TV (currently used by the 802.11 box behind the Cisco-ASA which is behind the U-Verse box) but at opposite ends of the room. If this box could inject the stream via WiFi I'd buy it.



I works FINE over WiFi, however you must have between 15-20 mbit of actual bandwidth. Anything less and it's not going to work right (if at all). So if you have the router near by, a 150-300 mbit N setup (something with Gbe ports), then this will work over wifi. Yes it will work over G, however G maxes at 54 mbit and unless you live in the country your likely not getting anything NEAR that.