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Hardware Support Discussions related to using various hardware setups with SageTV products. Anything relating to capture cards, remotes, infrared receivers/transmitters, system compatibility or other hardware related problems or suggestions should be posted here.

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Old 10-11-2005, 11:58 AM
kelemvor kelemvor is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 95
"Dual Tuner" card vs dual "Tuner Cards"?


I know that in computers you can add multiple tuner cards to expand the system. Does it make much difference if you have two single-tuner cards versus a single card with dual tuners built in?

Other than the obvious extra slot needed, is there any performance gain by having the separate or anything like that if you would be recording multiple channels at the same time somewhat often?
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Old 10-11-2005, 12:31 PM
michelkenny michelkenny is offline
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Canada
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I don't think you gain or lose anything by going either way. Performance should be the same because on a dual tuner card (or atleast a "good" dual tuner card) there are 2 hardware encoding chips, so it's almost like having 2 seperate cards. I think all PCI slots share the same bandwith, so combining 2 cards into 1 shouldn't decreased your bandwith.

For me it's only the convinience of being able to pack more tuners into a computer (if you only have 2 PCI slots, you can only install 2 single-tuner cards giving you 2 tuners, or you can install 2 dual-tuner cards that give you 4 tuners ).
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Old 10-11-2005, 12:32 PM
dagar dagar is offline
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Location: Chesapeake, VA
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No performance gain by breaking them out. And in the case of desktop mobos, they all ride the same PCI bus so same level of contention. Besides, SD content doesn't need that high a level of throughput.

There are quite a few reported issues regarding VIA chipsets and the dual-tuner Hauppauge PVR-500MCE (but there are manifold issues with VIA and the PCI bus).

A 500 is two (2) PVR-150 cards on one paddle card (with some added circuitry to combine their RF tuner inputs and such.
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Old 10-11-2005, 06:02 PM
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gplasky gplasky is offline
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One advantage of the dual tuner card like the PVR500 is using only one cable lead-in for both tuners. Reduces cable clutter.

Big Gerr
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Old 10-12-2005, 12:58 PM
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m1abrams m1abrams is offline
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You do need to keep in mind with the PVR-500 that it only has builtin 1 set of RCA inputs. So if you need dual-tuner setup with say two STB then you will need a breakout box with the PVR-500.
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Old 10-13-2005, 01:16 PM
kelemvor kelemvor is offline
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So on the 500 you only need one COax Cable and it has the splitter built in? i didn't know that. Coudln't tell from the pictures I've seen.... That's really cool.
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Old 10-13-2005, 01:20 PM
michelkenny michelkenny is offline
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Yeah, in the pictures it looks like there are 2 coaxial inputs, but only one of them is for TV. The other one is the the FM radio antenna (but you can't use that with Sage).
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Old 10-14-2005, 11:56 AM
cenwesi cenwesi is offline
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really, i have always wondered about that looking at the pictures.
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Old 10-17-2005, 10:01 AM
paulbeers paulbeers is offline
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,550
Just throwing my two cents worth in. If the PVR500 had been around when I built my sage box, I would have gone with that over my two M150's. For basically the same cost, I wouldn't have had to use up two PCI card slots (and when you have it running in a box with only 3 to begin with). I also hate having to try to screw in two coax cables into the back of my computer. It is cramped back there as it is with all the other cables! Like I said, I don't have a PVR500 but that is the way I would go now, if I didn't already have the investment of the M150's, so I can't advise on the image quality, but it gives you another opinion and hopefully helps you make your decision.

At Newegg:
2 - Win TV 150 = 72.00 + 3.99 ship x 2 = 151.98
1 - Win TV 500 = 138.00 + 4.99 = 142.99

Cheaper than 2 seperate cards and only takes 1 PCI!!!
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