Pinnacle PCTV HD Card - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 09-27-2008, 06:54 AM
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Default Pinnacle PCTV HD Card

Is this a good deal? Is this even worth picking up for $25?
http://www.woot.com/
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Old 09-27-2008, 09:03 AM
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We'll find out soon enough, I just ordered one... Pinnacle gets reviewed well enough genreally though so I'm sure it's fine. The only think that kind of worries me about the card is it says stereo sound, I'm hopeing you can pull 5.1 DD off the signal but with that written, who knows

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BTW, feels more like a HT Gear subject to me.
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Old 09-27-2008, 03:50 PM
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I have the USB HD PCTV that I use for my laptop at work. It was worth it for me and I paid $129.
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Old 10-08-2008, 09:49 PM
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So I finally got this card in, installed it and got it up and running. Here are some thoughts.

Vista 64bit drivers are only in beta form, so that's a bit of a downside. I hope this will be upgraded to full version soon, but on the plus side thus far the beta drivers seem functional ::knock on wood:: It's worth noting that I've only had the card installed since 6pm tonight.

this thing really is stereo, and it really seems to not handle 5.1 very well, or at the very least media center may not have been in stereo mode causing channels to just be dropped (I hope!!) rather than downmixed. If it's a driver issue then I hope this gets worked out quickly.

Picture quality seems to be solid.

Over all, if you're looking for something cheap and quick then this is a solid purchase. It integrates well with media center which is awesome, if you have an x-box 360 or extender (linksys, hp media smart tv amongst others) then you're golden!

For me, I still have plans to buy higher quality ATSC HD tuners, but I'll probably keep this one installed. One draw back for me is that it's PCI, I only have one PCI card slot in my machine which means my audigy extream gamer fatal1ty is gone. Oh well. My next tuner will be PCI-Express 1x

Edit
Ok, so I'm guessing that CSI: Miami HD is broadcast in 5.1... Assuming that is the case, then I *beleive* that the card and software is properly downmixing the 5.1 audio signal. Still not ideal, but at least it's.... workable.

Last edited by crazzeto; 10-08-2008 at 10:05 PM.
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Old 10-12-2008, 11:03 PM
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Update, I actually am getting 5.1 off the audio stream! Very nice, my PC speakers are screwed though, ugh... I'll need to replace those. Good thing I'm mainly using this from my MC extender.

Edit
I've also got my old artec USB ATSC tuner hooked up again since installing the new turner made my MC magically work again after the MB upgrade. So I've got a half way decent local air secondary PVR going that I can use to tape local air content that I don't want taking up space on my primary PVR. Very handy!
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