I have received my Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-1950 which cost a little under $200 Canadian. This price includes all taxes.
NOTE: When using Windows XP, WinTV v7 does not seem to work. Therefore, one will have to user WinTV v6 which will be on the CD or at http://www.hauppauge.com/site/support/support_wintv6.htm.
Being the only external TV tuner with a hardware encoder, I did not have much choice. The other four cheaper models have a software encoder. Therefore, I was willing to pay a premium for a model with a hardware encoder.
First, I plugged the power adapter into the TV tuner, and then the USB cable to the computer. Then, I downloaded and installed the drivers from the Hauppage website. I rarely ever use the drivers shipped with the hardware unless there is not a version available online.
There were no problems with an unrecognizable driver, so that was a good sign.
I double-clicked on the TV tuner icon and went through the process of detecting the channels available through cable.
The picture and sound is perfect. The TV tuner is warm, but it works nevertheless.
The remote does not work without an additional driver. If the remote is not working, you will have to insert the Hauppauge driver CD. From there, browse the CD to the IR32 folder. Double-click the IR32 icon to install the remote control driver.
The Nintendo Wii does not work properly which is not a surprise. The decoder has to decode the Wii game and the Wii Remote. There is a delay of about three seconds when moving the Wii Remote. Therefore, any device (mainly gaming devices) that needs to decode the video and a joystick may not work properly.
I purchased a VCR-DVD combo player. It is currently plugged into the TV tuner using the RCA connectors. The DVDs and VHS tapes work fine, but clicking play with the mouse does not work. One will have to use the buttons on the VCR-DVD combo player or a universal remote to play, fast forward, or do other functions. Furthermore, it works in conjunction with the TV cable. An unused channel will have to be used to watch the movies.
During the summer when the temperatures reach over 25 degrees Celsius, the Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-1950 does not work so well. I have removed the silver sides to hopefully get some airflow.
As of the 17th of July 2010, it no longer works. The channels are grainy and choppy. I tested the TV tuner on two computers with the same results.
For those people in hot climates, an internal version may work better if the case has adequate airflow.
As of the 20th of July 2010, it is working again. The room is not as hot as before. Therefore, I will have to purchase a fan to keep the Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-1950 from overheating. It seems that heat is causing the TV tuner to not work properly.
As of the 22nd of July 2010, I have purchased and installed an internal PCI version. The TV Tuner can be seen at http://aprivatebeach.com/blog/2010/07/using-hauppauge-wintv-hvr-1600
As of Sept, 8, 2010, the problem seems to be the signal strength. http://www.ehow.com/how_2324022_amplify-cable-signal.html will provide details. The only way to be sure is to connect the cable to only one TV and see if the problem persists. If you are connected to only one TV, and the TV picture is fuzzy, then the problem could be a weak signal. A solution can be found at http://aprivatebeach.com/blog/2010/09/tv-tuner-fuzzy-picture/
I will post more results with continued testing
- Windows XP Professional Edition
- ATI x550 256MB PCI-E video card
- AMD 5200×2 CPU
- 1GB DDR 667MHZ RAM