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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 01-14-2009, 12:35 PM
Myro Myro is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Montreal, Canada
Posts: 47
Making the jump to HDTV

So, I finally made the jump. New HDTV with Hd terminal.

Now, my SageTV setup (running good for a few years now) is still recording analogue cable.

I have 3 x hauppauge PVR 250 in my server, connected to the tv (as it was before). I don't use these for time shift. Only recording through Sage (version 6.2 I think)

My question. Can I record HD with these cards? Or do I need new cards? I suppose that I will need (3x) HD terminal, each connected to it's card. Or not?

I was thinking of moving everything in the closet and buying the HD theatre to put below the TV. Does this need a higher-end server? Or can my current setup support this new add-on?

Thanks for any help or tips.
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Old 01-16-2009, 09:30 AM
Myro Myro is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Montreal, Canada
Posts: 47
no one has done this before?
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Old 01-16-2009, 10:09 AM
paulbeers paulbeers is offline
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,550
I think the reason you haven't gotten an answer, is because this is discussed in so many threads. Search is your best friend...but since you want it laid out again here goes:

If you want to go HD, you first need to ask yourself what do you want to record in HD? Just your locals? All your cable channes?

Your PVR250's are not HD capable. Hooking an HD STB to it will only result in an HD channel down converted to SD. My recommendation would be to buy an HVR1600/1800 or an HDHomerun to pick up your locals. Your locals should be available in HD via Clear QAM via the coax in the wall. This will give you all of your locals in crystal clear bit perfect HD.

If you want Discovery HD, ESPN HD, etc, you are going to need to get an HDPVR and hook it to an HD STB. There are a few other routes that you MIGHT be lucky to get to work, but this is the most fool proof.

A combination of a Clear QAM tuner/s and an HDPVR should get you exactly what you want. I really recommend if you go with an HDPVR, so go with an Sage HD Extender as the h.264 that it records in can be difficult to get working perfectly on a full client.
Sage Server: AMD Athlon II 630, Asrock 785G motherboard, 3GB of RAM, 500GB OS HD in RAID 1 and 2 - 750GB Recording Drives, HDHomerun, Avermedia HD Duet & 2-HDPVRs, and 9.0TB storage in RAID 5 via Dell Perc 5i for DVD storage
Source: Clear QAM and OTA for locals, 2-DishNetwork VIP211's
Clients: 2 Sage HD300's, 2 Sage HD200's, 2 Sage HD100's, 1 MediaMVP, and 1 Placeshifter
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Old 01-31-2009, 01:15 PM
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coryking coryking is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Seattle, WA (USA)
Posts: 62
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And to follow up if anybody hits this in a search... at the time of this post, the only* way you will be able to record most of your CableTV channels in HD is with the Hauppage HD PVR 1212. The QAM stuff will theoretically have a higher quality (the tuner card basically dumps the raw data on the wire to your hard drive), but you'll be stuck with the "lower" channels--typically what you'd get with the most basic cable plan possible.

In Comcast Seattle, WA - I only get the broadcast channels, discovery channel and all the government/public access stuff using QAM. Everything else is encrypted and goes through my cable box and into the analog port on my HVR-1600. The 1600, by the way, only records HD on the ATSC/QAM port and not the analog.

Bottom line is, go write a letter to whoever oversees the cable franchise in your area and write another one to the FCC. Tell them you should be able to buy a tuner card from Fry's or NewEgg that supports the Cable Card standard. It is insane only Tivo and other "blessed" devices are able to record the shows you pay good money for. This whole mess is a political issue, not a technical one.

By the way, I feel your frustration--HD is still early adopter if you ask me. There isn't much info, lore or "leassons learned" out there. Once I finally get my HD stuff going, I really want to publish a good website that provides a reliable list of "if you use QAM in Seattle, these are the channels you'll get" or "What the heck is QAM?".

* Well, there are other ways, like adding a hardware mod to your cable box.

Last edited by coryking; 01-31-2009 at 01:22 PM. Reason: added footnote :-)
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