[oclug] Personal Video Recorder
jlittle at orderedBits.com
Sat Jul 3 11:24:54 EDT 2004
Quoting Matthew Wilcox <willy at debian.org>:
> I'm intereested in building myself a PVR and wondered if anybody else
> wanted to collaborate on design / purchasing appropriate hardware /
> commiserating over software problems.
Sure but I've already made the plunge. I'll fill in my choices below
and if you're interested I can send you some more of my research.
> My design goals:
> - Something that looks like it was bought. About the form factor of
> a VCR, probably a black case, small motherboard, probably not too many
> PCI slots.
I went with the ASUS Pundit which might be overkill for you depending on
what you want to use it for. Another good machine might be one of the
VIA pizza box models with the built in MPEG2 codecs. The all singing/
all dancing option would be an ASUS Digimatrix. Some people also like
the Cube shaped SFF boxes but I find the shape awkward and unworkable
for my cabinet.
> - Works with Rogers basic cable (since that's what I've got).
That's a function of the tuner card, I went with Hauppaugge basic cards
but just about any bt878 chipset based card will work. One thing to watch
for if you want stereo audio is support for DBX.
> - Networked somehow (maybe wireless?)
Most of these machines have built in ethernet, wireless for me wasn't a
big win as I don't plan to move it much. Bandwidth-wise you might need
at least 802.11g to stream video.
> - MythTV based (probably the mythknoppix easy-install)
The knoppmyth distro is based on Debian and has most of the desirable
features built right in. It is also pre-optimized for myth. The drawbacks
I found were that it hard to do additional customizations and quite easy
to break irreparably (but perhaps that was just my stupidity). Lately I
have been experimenting with Gentoo+Myth but it is tedious to configure
everything (and it's still not working).
> - Outputs to the flat panel monitor I already have
The Pundit has Composite, VGA and DVI outputs.
> - Preferably doesn't require non-free software to work, but I'm more
> pragmatic than moralistic here.
MythTVs all free as in beer, some solutions require some proprietary
drivers dependding on the har
> Contact me if you're interested in something approximating this.
I'd like to work with you on this.
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