Any TV Tuners for the mac?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by WallpaperPerson, Oct 14, 2009.

  1. WallpaperPerson macrumors member


    Dec 4, 2008
    Hello. I need to know if there are any GOOD tv tuners for mac because I am planning to convert some old VHS home videos to DVD. Any GOOD ones I could buy?
  2. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus


    Jul 24, 2002
  3. TEG macrumors 604


    Jan 21, 2002
    Langley, Washington
    The Elgato Eye TV are the only ones I'm aware of that come with software. There may be others, you could try a simple Google Search for "TV Tuner Mac" and see what it returned.

  4. lukecro macrumors member

    Feb 27, 2009
    I bought the Eye TV Hybrid for my iMac earlier in the year, and it's been awesome so far -- just hooked it up to a regular old analog TV antenna, but it still managed to pick up tons of digital over-the-air TV and radio stations.

    It was also super easy to install -- put in the software, then plugged the little Eye TV USB into the Mac, and everything worked without a problem. Recording TV shows was easy, fast-forward and rewind was easy, programming future recordings was easy, etc. -- not as slick as Tivo, but better than a lot of DVRs.

    You can also route cable TV, VCRs, DVD players, etc., through the device -- but I haven't tried that yet. Planning on using it to convert a lot of my old VHS home movies into digital files so I can edit them and toss out the tapes.

    Elgato also has some other, higher-powered TV-tuner and conversion products available:

    . . . but the Eye TV hybrid seemed to have all the spcs I needed and was conveniently small in size, so I went with that.

    (I actually bought it on, which was slightly cheaper.)

    -- Luke
  5. pjarvi macrumors 65816


    Jan 11, 2006
    Round Lake, IL
  6. ftaok macrumors 603


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    Just to give you some other options, if all you want to do is digitize your VHS tapes, you don't necessarily need to spend for a TV tuner.

    Here are some potentially cheaper options.

    1. miniDV camcorder with A-to-D passthru. If you don't already have one, perhaps you could borrow one. Keep in mind that the import format will be DV, so you'll need serious hard drive space if you have many tapes. DV footage is 13GB/hr. Use iMovie to import and edit ... I would suggest using an older version of iMovie with DV footage due to a change Apple made for exporting of DV material.

    2. For $99, ElGato makes a simple device that accepts composite/s-video and converts it to MPEG-4/h264. It comes with software for recording and editing.

    3. For $129, BlackMagic makes a simple device that accepts component(480p)/composite/s-video and converts to h264. It comes with software for recording and editing.

    In any of these cases, you will need to convert to MPEG-2 when burning to DVD. In theory, the miniDV camcorder would give you the best results, but the lack of s-video input could result in a loss of color fidelity. There are very few miniDV camcorders with s-video input.

    A hybrid tuner will also do the trick, but they are typically more expensive than the above 3 options.

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