I have an new laptop that I want to watch HD channels on using the USB tuners on the market, but I don't know the best one to buy that works well. Do they even perform any good? I hear that some of the models aren't worth purchasing. I get mixed reviews.
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Re: Best USB HD Tuner?
Hi and welcome to FixYa,
To your concern, most but not all USB ported TV tuners are reasonably good and serve the purpose. Often the problem encountered would be OS compatibility, video card compatibility and of course, just how good the incoming TV signals are.
Rule of thumb would be go for known brands with reputable after sales support. Some of the brands that have had good reports are those by Pinnacle, Hauppauge, Canopus and Asus.
Good luck and Thank you for using FixYa. Happy Holidays.
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As far as I can make out, this Toshiba model is made for the US market so doesn't actually have a freeview tuner. It will only receive satellite and cable HD signals and local US TV, all of which has to be bought. You need to get something like an August DVB400 - HD Freeview Set Top Box -Digital PVR Tuner with USB TV Recording, eBay would be best I think, where they are sold for under £30.00. The tuner packed up on my 32" Regza so I bought one of these and it works fine. Plus you can record to a USB stick if you don't want to miss a programme. Hope this helps ......BS
If you have a cable box and can set your TV to channel 3 then you should be able to watch cable. If you want to watch over the air broadcasts then you need a digital converter box which you can buy at Best Buy for around 40 dollars. You use the converter box as the tuner and set your TV on channel 3. http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Coby+-+ATSC+Standard-Definition+Converter+Box/9663904.p?id=1218140711965&skuId=9663904&st=digital%20converter%20box&cp=2&lp=5
If you have an LCD TV with built-in HD tuner (TV will say HD Ready and will have internal tuner), then you can use the TV internal tuner.
The best way to get HD is via satellite. Althought HD Freeview is theoretically available since end 2009 I have not been able to receive any HD channel using Freeview tuner, and I live in a London area where HD FV is supposed to be available since 2010. Even with Free Sat the choice is poor. You get steadily only BBC HD, where at most you can watch some documentary or drama series (it is a kind of sample channel). ITV HD, BBC1 HD and the rest frequencies on Astra change Sat quite often. I am a TV technician and the sat tuning job is not difficult to me but retuning every month was still an awful waste of time.At the end I gave up and I only watch HD through Sky.
At the end of the day the only efficient way to receive HD TV is still through Virgin or Sky.
Hi, Yes you can buy a small device that is a TV Tuner Card which avarage around $50 more or less and some cards even have a recording ability that would be a little expensive, once you install the card and software, hook up your antenna (if none on the card) and follow the instructions to watch TV... Though if you have high speed internet you can also watch TV on the net, there are thousands of channels and you will find many links to softwares you buy to watch these channels, but the best is a free web site http://wwitv.com/portal.htm
Best of Luck
You can watch TV on your laptop, but you need to purchase an USB TV tuner and plug it into the laptop's USB port plus install the TV tuner software.
There are several manufacturers that make these USB TV tuners, I suggest you do a Google search for these devices for the best deals.
Depending on which kind of tv tuner you are looking (analog basic cable) or HD tuner, the higher end tv tuners will usually handle both basic cable or connecting via satellite or some sort of set top box.
I would look for the ATI TV wonder HD, your going to want a tv tuner that can do hardware encoding on the actual tuner itself, older tuners will rely on your pc to process a lot of the data.