Feeds

How to get TV on your Mac

Watch and learn

Mobile application security vulnerability report

Feature Will Apple ever equip its Macs with TV tuners? Plenty of users have asked it to, and Apple's own Front Row software would certainly make a smart user interface for a DVR. But as Apple's Apple TV set-top box shows, the company's more interested in persuading consumers to pay to download TV shows from iTunes than watch broadcast telly.

Thankfully, that's not the end of watching TV on a Mac. Other companies are willing to fill the gap Apple has left, and if you want to watch analogue or digital broadcasts, satellite or cable transmissions on your Mac, you can.

The doyen of Mac TV products is Germany's Elgato, which has come to dominate both the software and hardware sides of the equation. It's software is EyeTV, currently at version 2.4, and has a feature list and a slick user interface that puts much of the software bundled with Windows-oriented TV tuner hardware to shame.

elgato eyetv hybrid digital and analogue usb tv tuner
Elgato's EyeTV: select a channel

EyeTV provides all the customary DVR features - record shows there and then, schedule recordings, pause live TV, etc. - and even allows you to edit recordings to trim out ads and bits of previous and subsequent programmes that have been grabbed along with the show you want to watch.

The software works with Roxio's Toast disc burning application, if you have it, to facilitate archiving, and it'll also reformat recordings at the push of a button for the Apple TV and iPod - and, for that matter, other playback gadgets that support the same H.264 video format.

EyeTV includes a year's subscription to Europe's TVTV.com online electronic programme guide, though it'll also pick up EPG information broadcast by digital TV channels. You can organise channels into favourites, by genre, or by whatever means takes your fancy.

elgato eyetv hybrid digital and analogue usb tv tuner
Elgato's EyeTV: manage and export your recordings

It is, in short, the definitive TV application for the Mac and well worth the €80/$80 (£40) Elgato's asking for it. Of course, Elgato bundles EyeTV with its own line of TV tuner hardware, but it'll also work with an array of hardware from other manufacturers, including Plextor, Twinhan, Terratec, Pinnacle, Miglia and Hauppauge, so you're not tied to buying Elgato's own hardware. There's a full list of EyeTV-compatible tuners here.

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
For Lenovo US, 8-inch Windows tablets are DEAD – long live 8-inch Windows tablets
Reports it's killing off smaller slabs are greatly exaggerated
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
Seventh-gen SPARC silicon will accelerate Oracle databases
Uncle Larry's mutually-optimised stack to become clearer in August
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.