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Turning Your PC Into a PVR

Techstination feature for Monday, January 6, 2003

Turning your PC into a personal video recorder. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. The forecasts are for personal video recorders like the Tivo and ReplayTV to increase in popularity in the months ahead. They let you pause live TV and save programs onto a hard drive. If you have a fairly new PC, the odds are you already have a pretty good sized hard drive. Pinnacle Systems is out with a box that lets you easily add those PVR functions. You run your TV cable into Pinnacle PCTV Deluxe and attach another cable into a USB port on your computer. Product manager William Chien...

"It comes with a software application from Pinnacle called PCTV Vision which is your viewing, recording, time shifting application. Another nice feature of the Vision application is that you can take the programs you've recorded and you can burn them to your CD-R or DVD burner to make your own video CD or DVD."

You can also attach a camcorder to bring in home movies to edit and save onto disc. The advantage Pinnacle has over its competition...

"Mostly right now, people are buying internal solutions. So PCI cards that you have to open up your PC to install. So products like the Win TV or the ATI All in Wonder card are also products with similar functions but that require that you open your PC and install a card."

Something that lots of consumers don't like to go through. Pinnacle PCTV Deluxe sells for about two hundred dollars... and there is no add on program guide subscription fee. You're still better off with a Replay or Tivo box for your family room TV, but it's a good solution for a bedroom, dorm or home office. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.