Tuesday, October 26, 2004


In my saga to build a PVR (or actually, I guess the proper acronym is HTPC), I'm starting to lean towards using Windows instead of Linux, at least for my first PVR. One promising piece of free software (free as in beer) is GB-PVR.

As for hardware, it requires mpeg encoding to be performed on the card, as I understand. This rules out a lot of the really cheap cards that use BT878 chipsets. However, there appears to be a lot of cheaper cards available with onboard hardware encoding and Windows driver support (this is where Linux has the problem--most manufacturers don't develop Linux drivers, so most hardware is not supported). Since this first one is more or less a prototype, and I don't have a lot of disposable income to throw at it, I'm probably going to have to use cheaper hardware... as in no more than $50 is what I'm hoping for.

The other thing that looks promising about GB-PVR is that it's extensible via .NET. Being a .NET developer, this piqued my interest.

I'm not absolutely in love with some of the look and feel. Perhaps it's skinnable, or otherwise can be modified. But, since the core of GB-PVR is not open source, I don't know how much it can be changed.

I'm still weighing my options.