WinTV HVR 950Q by Hauppauge - Reviewed by Edward Cardona
Recently, as a traveler and technology consultant, I considered buying a USB TV receiver for my laptop to record my favorite shows while out on the road or away from the hotel at a function.
As luck would have it, I was asked by Offbeat Travel to review the Hauppauge WinTV-HVR 950Q. This model is for a PC, but Hauppauge makes one for my Mac Book laptop.
The kit includes
Using WinTV-HVR 950Q
I tried it on two PC laptops, two PC desktops, and two MAC Intel machines.
Setup is fairly intuitive. The machine scans for analog and digital TV stations broadcasting over the air from local transmission sites. This takes a few minutes. The software then returns a list of the stations, and you can uncheck stations you do not want to see as you surf.
Reception improves with the included TV antenna extended or better yet an indoor TV antenna. I tested the unit with both the included TV antenna and an amplified indoor TV antenna.
All the machines tested were out of the box with only built-in motherboard graphics capabilities. I believe that a better graphics card installed would make the WinTV-HVR 950Q operate as it was intended. Being the Mac has a better graphics system it should test out much better with out of the box computers.
There were a few problems, that users need to know. I had difficulty installing drivers on one of the machines, and I had to uninstall and start over. On another machine the software crashed when clicking more than once to change channels. During the day not all changes are running digital at the time of the review, and when I clicked up or down into one of those channels the software crashed. This will probably cease to be a problem when all channels are digital. Finally, on machines with the graphics card on the motherboard the card caused stilted playback, and a dubbed feel of the sound during the playback of recorded programs. The instructions alert users to this problem.
All in all, I recommend the WinTV-HVR 950Q not only for the traveler, but for the home theater enthusiast who wants to digitally record his favorite shows onto his computer’s hard drive without upgrading his Operating System. This product is particularly impressive with newer computers.
To make the best use of this equipment consider using an amplified antennae to help bring in a stronger signal, or hooking the USB device to
a cable TV. Purchasers should also check the website www.Hauppauge.com
for updated drivers and software, and installation manual.
* Used an amplified indoor TV antenna.
Hauppauge Computer Works, Inc.
Ed Cardona is a travel photographer and technology consultant. Contact him through Cardona-Foto.com
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