Customer Review

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wish I never messed with PCI cards. This is perfect., September 11, 2010
This review is from: SiliconDust HDHomeRun HDHR-US Dual Networked High Definition Digital Tuner Device (White) (Personal Computers)
I've tried several PCI tuner cards in my Windows Media PC, and then finally got this. I wish I'd gotten this guy first. I was worried that using a networked tuner would involve latency, but I've tuned the same channel on my laptop (via wireless, even) and our TV, and there was only a barely perceptible difference in the timing. Most importantly, there is no noticeable lag in changing channels relative to a tuner card.

The reception is flawless, which is likely due both to a very good late generation tuner chip, but also (I speculate) to the fact that the tuner is not stuck inside the incredibly high-RF-interference environment of a computer case. I can't imagine being stuck next to a chip radiating RF harmonic all the way from MHz to GHz would be a great thing for a tuner to pull in weak signals. This certainly seems to have much less trouble than my old tuner cards.

A really cool benefit of this tuner is that you can watch TV from any computer in the house, as well. So, if my wife is watching something horrifying like "Grey's Anatomy," on the media center PC, I can just watch something else on my laptop instead of looking for a pen to stick in my neck.

One final advantage, that I haven't needed to try, is that this allows you to put the tuner as close as possible to the antenna. For example, you could have this up in the attic and only have to run a short cable from your aerial to this box. The reason this is important is that the raw RF signal coming from the antenna is the most prone to interference and attenuation, it being analog and extremely broadband. You thus want to demodulate it as close as possible to the antenna. Once you've got the digital stream, then it's no problem running a long ethernet cable or just using WiFi.

In summary, this is, after trying many options, the best way to get high def over the air TV (or unencrypted cable) into your computer.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 27, 2012 5:05:36 PM PST
Chris Minie says:
I agree with this review but would point out, this device is prone to interference with certain wireless routers. After weeks of trouble-shooting random pixilation on ALL channels, I recently discovered my Linksys E3200 is the source of the interference. I'm guessing it is the 5.0 GHz band that's doing it. My previous router ran at 2.4 GHz only. I haven't solved the problem yet, but wanted to point out that this device is not exactly plug and play with respect to Wifi.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 1, 2012 11:34:33 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 1, 2012 2:02:33 PM PST
I'm pretty sure that has nothing to do with the tuner and is actually your router being poorly shielded or generating spurious frequencies due to cheap components in the wifi radios. TV signals are all below 1 GHz, so there's no reason a high quality wifi router should interfere. I have my tuner one foot away from my router, with no issues.
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Review Details

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Reviewer

Jonathan Birge
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   

Location: Cambridge, MA

Top Reviewer Ranking: 756