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Wannabe Geek


Topic # 111542 6-Nov-2012 23:03 Send private message

Hi there, I'm actually from the US, but I regularly visit family here in New Zealand. Back in the States, I own an HTPC running XBMC to manage my large movie/tv collection and works great, but I have a DirecTV (Sky) HD PVR that works just fine and dandy on its own, so I never really got into any sort of HTPC/TV integration mostly because of how complex and virtually impossible it is to get Directv to work with a PC.

I'd love to do the same thing for my Mum here in Greymouth, as she has a very large DVD collection, but also she has a crummy Satmax receiver (hooked to a satellite dish). and was wondering if there was some way I could have an XBMC setup that could also double as TV receiver and actually watch TV. PVR capabilities would be nice but I'm mostly looking for basic TV watching with maybe better functionality than her current receiver. I know XBMC has some of that kind of functionality (and the upcoming Frodo will have built in recording functionality), but I've never been able to really explore it on my setup and I'm even less familiar with the way things work down here.

So, to sum up:

1) Can an XBMC/Windows setup replace a receiver and work for basic TV watching?

2) What hardware would I need? I mean, I get that I need a TV Tuner, but what kind of things do I need to look for with compatibility? Like is there something that I get that directly connects the Satellite dish to the PC? Do I need to record certain frequencies/numbers/stats the current receiver uses?

3) I checked the Freeview site and I understand this area has no HD, and I couldn't anyway as it's a dish and not UHF antenna, plus she doesn't currently have an HDTV anyway.

Thanks for your time!

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  Reply # 713274 6-Nov-2012 23:35 Send private message

i'm not familiar with XBMC, but Windows 7 and MCE will work with FreeView DVB-S (satellite) without too much effort. MediaPortal too.

You will need a tuner card, the Hauppauge WinTV Nova S Plus works great (I used to run two of these). The remote controls that come with the Nova are not much use though.

nova s plus: http://www.pbtech.co.nz/index.php?z=p&p=TVNHGR0013&name=Hauppauge-WinTV-Nova-S-Plus-Digital-Satellite-only

if you intend to replace the sat box, you will also need a remote control of some sort for the PC to control it. Common options are a MCE Remote Control + receiver pack, a PC case that ships with the IR + remote built in, or one of the great little Logitech di-novo clamshell keyboard/mouse units.

you can get a pre-built htpc box from someone like computer lounge, probably via trade me too.
http://www.computerlounge.co.nz/systems/systemdetail.asp?sysid=72&systypeid=5






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2 posts

Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 713447 7-Nov-2012 11:48 Send private message

Thank you so much for the info. Did a little looking around and I think if the card works better with Windows 7 MC, it looks like I can integrate it with XBMC just fine

I have an old PC just lying around that just needs a couple of upgrades that I'll use unless I can find something for under 300 USD.

And yes, my setup at home has a USB IR dongle controlled with a Logitech Harmony remote. Hoping to do the same thing here.

Thanks again for the info. It really helped a lot :)

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