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How to watch TV on your PC

PC as PVR

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The DVB-T PE310 PlusTV Dual Hybrid is a dual tuner card with a difference. Each tuner can be configured in software to act either as a digital tuner or an analogue tuner so you can have dual digital tuners with the option of an analogue tuner should it be required.

KWorld PlusTV Dual Hybrid PCIe card
KWorld's PlusTV Dual Hybrid PCIe card

Most manufacturers include a small portable aerial with the tuner. However, our experience is that they are next to useless. Clearly, how good these mini antennae are at picking up a solid signal depends on the coverage where you live, but when we connected the HP IQ770 to a proper aerial on the roof we found an impressive total of 70 TV and radio stations. Switching to a tiny indoor antenna that was packaged with a USB tuner inside a room with metal framed windows the DVB-T tuner picked up no channels whatsoever.

Placing the tiddly antenna on the outside window sill we did far better, picking up 26 channels including such gems as Sky Three, UKTV History and E4+1 - but not E4. There wasn't a single TV station that we would choose to watch but the radio selection wasn't bad.

Digital TV antenna
A typical bundled mini antennna

If you plan on using one of these travel aerials then we wish you luck, but strongly suggest that you get some proper ironmongery on your roof and even then you will likely need a £15-20 mains-powered signal booster if you're splitting the signal between rooms.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

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