DVB-T2 compatible USB tuner

Aravintht

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 7, 2007
626
1
London, UK
Hi guys,

I've had various Elgato USB device over the past 5 years so that I can watch tv on my mac while i'm surfing the web/studying etc etc.

Anyway, the last one I bought was in 2009, the Elgato Hybrid - it works great!

The only problem is it doesn't receive DVB-T2, which is the standard being used in the UK for Freview HD.

With HD programming becoming better by the day and Elgato not planning on updating their hardware anytime soon, I was wondering if anyone was aware of an alternative device? Preferably something compatible with EyeTV 3?

Thanks guys!
 
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Aravintht

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 7, 2007
626
1
London, UK
The only solution i've come up with is to connect the SkyHD box or a separate Freeview HD box to the input port on the dongle, but it takes away from the simplicity of having a single device that can do everything.
 

OllyW

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 11, 2005
17,065
6,399
The Black Country, England
There's this one which works with Windows but they are pretty thin on the ground at the moment. Perhaps there will be more choice next year as Freeview HD becomes more widely available throughout the country?

We're not getting it until September '11. :(
 

Aravintht

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 7, 2007
626
1
London, UK
Thanks for the info!

we've had it in London for almost a year now, the plan was to have them in stores for the world cup but after that deadline passed, there has been no pressure on manufacturers to produce them - especially with all the online live tv streams.

I've looked at a couple..

Mygica T200
PCTV Nanostick T2
Blackgold T2

But none of them mention mac compatibility and I don't want to me stuck with something I cant use as we have no windows machines in the house.

Hopefully there will be something from Elgato in the new year.
 

old john

macrumors member
Nov 18, 2005
94
2
England
Have you found anything for DVB-T2 yet?

I too have been hoping that Elgato would soon produce a TV stick that would receive DVB-T2, as we are about to buy a 27" iMac. It's now nearly 7 months since your last post on this thread and I wonder if you have found a solution.

Incidentally, I've used a Miglia TVMini with EyeTV software since early 2006 and have found it excellent. The digital switchover seems to have exposed some bugs in the EyeTV software and the workarounds are a nuisance, but generally it has been very good indeed.
 

weckart

macrumors 601
Nov 7, 2004
4,776
1,819
I have the PCTV dongle. Elgato has been long been maintaining a diplomatic silence over support for this, although it tends to come up trumps for PCTV sticks sooner or later.

I am guessing that part of the problem is the requirement to encrypt Freeview HD streams so that they cannot be recorded. Someone has got the same stick working under Linux but I am not sure if it can record in HD.

http://stevekerrison.com/290e/

I doubt that this will lead to an open source kext for OSX when Elgato usually does the job so well but you never know.
 

old john

macrumors member
Nov 18, 2005
94
2
England
I have the PCTV dongle. Elgato has been long been maintaining a diplomatic silence over support for this, although it tends to come up trumps for PCTV sticks sooner or later.
I had this reply from Hauppauge:

"We only have one USB tuner which receives DVB-T2 signals and that is the PCTV NanoStick T2.

It is not currently supported on a Mac however Elgato are currently working on this."​

I am guessing that part of the problem is the requirement to encrypt Freeview HD streams so that they cannot be recorded. Someone has got the same stick working under Linux but I am not sure if it can record in HD.
I hadn't realised that prevention of recording is a requirement for DVB-T2. Are you sure? I have EyeTV which came with a Miglia TVMini (bought April 2006) and the joys of that include the ability to record, edit and burn to DVD. It even has a facility to export directly to Toast!

I doubt that this will lead to an open source kext for OSX when Elgato usually does the job so well but you never know.
This is beyond an elderly simpleton such as I am! I didn't even know there was such a thing as kext. I googled it and found .kext is a filename extension for a kernel extension. All I know (or think!) is that the kernel is some low level part of the OS and my only experience of it is that the symptom of our iMac dying was called a kernel panic! I'm hoping our new iMac to be ordered next week or two will be able to retrieve EyeTV recordings from the dead iMac's HD. The recorded programme files are so big that only a minority were backed up!
 

old john

macrumors member
Nov 18, 2005
94
2
England
Anyone seen anything come onto the market?
Elgato still don't appear to have anything...
I've not seen anything new about DVB-T2 for the Mac on Elgato's site.

Maybe I should follow up Hauppage's 1 Aug reply that "... Elgato are currently working on this." I could ask when it will be available, but with the lack of anything on Elgato's site after 5 months, I'm sceptical about whether Elgato has really been working on it.

The picture on our 27" iMac using our 2006 Miglia TVMini is excellent using our existing EyeTV app, which seems compatible with OS X 10.7 Lion. I now wonder whether a 27" screen is large enough for HD to make much difference even though the iMac's resolution is so far beyond standard DVB resolution.

We had trouble with the DVB frequency changes that accompanied the digital switchover. It turned out the frequencies etc are stored in the account of the root user and we had to log in as root and widen the permissions.
 

danckwerts

macrumors regular
Jun 7, 2008
141
88
Richmond upon Thames
A gap in the market

Elgato certainly deserve to lose their custom to a competitor if they can't be bothered to sort this out after so long. On the other hand, it doesn't make a blind bit of difference to me as we can't get an HD signal here in Richmond at the moment (and even the low-definition digital signal breaks up when there's a plane overhead, which is most of the time). If I want to watch HD I have to do so online.
 

Flyinace2000

macrumors 6502a
Sep 28, 2004
664
0
Elgato certainly deserve to lose their custom to a competitor if they can't be bothered to sort this out after so long. On the other hand, it doesn't make a blind bit of difference to me as we can't get an HD signal here in Richmond at the moment (and even the low-definition digital signal breaks up when there's a plane overhead, which is most of the time). If I want to watch HD I have to do so online.
We are moving to London in a few months and were hoping to keep our "no cable" ways by getting a USB Freeview HD tuner. But from searching it looksl ike i am better off going with a cable provider and their DVR solutions. Maybe the Virgin Tivo (that just sounds...odd).
 

MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
10,650
29
USA
We are moving to London in a few months and were hoping to keep our "no cable" ways by getting a USB Freeview HD tuner. But from searching it looksl ike i am better off going with a cable provider and their DVR solutions. Maybe the Virgin Tivo (that just sounds...odd).
The UK is scheduled to go through its digital transition in April 2012. The number of freeview choices will reportedly dramatically during the transition. I suggest that you wait until you make the move to decide on your TV viewing choices.
 

old john

macrumors member
Nov 18, 2005
94
2
England
The UK is scheduled to go through its digital transition in April 2012. The number of freeview choices will reportedly dramatically during the transition. I suggest that you wait until you make the move to decide on your TV viewing choices.
Terrestrial digital TV in the UK, known as Freeview, started in 2002 and has been widely available across the country for several years, with HD launching in 2009. What is called the "digital switchover", is actually switching off the analogue signal and that is being done area by area, with one transmitter in 2005, but most areas between 2007 and 2012.

The dates of switching off UK analogue transmitters are given here.

After these dates, although the frequencies may change necessitating retuning, HD channels will still use DVB-T2. So the need for a DVB-T2 tuner for HD will be the same in London after April 2012 as it is now.
 

MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
10,650
29
USA
...

After these dates, although the frequencies may change necessitating retuning, HD channels will still use DVB-T2. So the need for a DVB-T2 tuner for HD will be the same in London after April 2012 as it is now.
Thank you for the link. I see that the major difference between the digital transition in the US and the UK is that most analog transmissions in the US were shut down on a single day whereas the UK is doing a rolling shutdown of analog broadcasts.

I will say this: From a technical point of view, one may not have expected a change in how digital television was viewed in the US. That is to say, that one might have though that the biggest change would have been the need to rescan many digital tuners. The reality has been somewhat different. What we see is that there are some reception issues. On the positive side, the ability for digital broadcasters to multicast has opened up many heretofore nonexistent viewing options. New TV networks have been created to take advantage of the digital subchannels offered by many broadcasters. The US is seeing a decline in cable and satellite subscribers. These changes did not happen overnight. But they have happened in the 2+ years following the US digital changeover. We have no idea how the digital changeover will affect UK viewing. We may rest assured, however, that it will change UK viewing.
 

old john

macrumors member
Nov 18, 2005
94
2
England
Anyone had any luck with the TBS 6220 DVB-T2 PCI-E card?
Sadly, there hasn't been a rush of replies saying, "Yes, I'm using it on my Mac!" or even a single such reply!

Amazon's product description says, "This DVB T2 PC TV card is ready with windows BDA driver and Linux driver." It says nothing about Macs. Is there any Mac software to drive it and provide the functionality and the user interface?

I notice there's also a dual tuner version, TBS6280.

With gradually more countries introducing TV services using DVB-T2, I'm still hoping Elgato will eventually see it as a market worth addressing. I really like EyeTV. (I soon sorted out the post-digital switchover difficulties I reported earlier in this thread -- Jul 25, 2011 10:32 AM)
 

Aravintht

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 7, 2007
626
1
London, UK
I would have thought Elgato would have produced some hardware by now!

I remember reading that they were pushing to get something out ahead of the 2010 football world cup. Doubt anything will be released before the Olympics, maybe 2014 football world cup or maybe there just isn't enough demand!?
 

old john

macrumors member
Nov 18, 2005
94
2
England
I would have thought Elgato would have produced some hardware by now!
I've seen it argued that Elgato is unlikely to produce DVB-T2 hardware as they use chips from DibCom, a French company, that doesn't make DVB-T2 compatible chips. According to Wikipedia, the company does now make such chips and there are indications that even France will move to DVB-T2 late 2015 or early 2016, though some say 2020!

Anyway, as we know, other companies are making the hardware already, what we need is for Elgato to produce the DVB-T2 software to go with it.
Indeed I got my EyeTV software with Miglia hardware, though I believe Miglia now supplies other software.

. . . or maybe there just isn't enough demand!?
You may be right there. After all only seven different people have contributed to this thread in 9.5 months! On the other hand, MacRumors is an English language forum so, apart from the UK, most members of forum come from countries that aren't using DVB-T2: the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland . . .!
 

GrowlingBadger

macrumors newbie
May 18, 2012
6
0
The Hunt for HD Freeview Mac PVR Mecca

I too have been on the hunt for this... i would say Elgato (and others) are missing a trick and should release at least something to placate us... even if it does inhibit certain programs from being recorded. I really want to upgrade my media centre system... but cannot justify spending on a really old non-hd version esp if one is about to be released... or will i just be waiting forever?
 

MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
10,650
29
USA
My reading of elgato's product offerings shows that high-definition digital television in France, the rest of Europe, and Asia is well-supported on both the Mac and Windows for cable, satellite, and broadcast. Or am I missing something?
 

GrowlingBadger

macrumors newbie
May 18, 2012
6
0
My reading of elgato's product offerings shows that high-definition digital television in France, the rest of Europe, and Asia is well-supported on both the Mac and Windows for cable, satellite, and broadcast. Or am I missing something?
Sadly I think you are missing something, if you look at the features tab on each of these it states:


EyeTV DTT is intended for use in countries where digital terrestrial television is broadcast. Digital terrestrial television is also known as DVB-T, DTT, Freeview in the UK, and TNT in France. UK residents, please note: Freeview HD or DVB-T2 is not supported.
 

MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
10,650
29
USA
Sadly I think you are missing something, if you look at the features tab on each of these it states:


EyeTV DTT is intended for use in countries where digital terrestrial television is broadcast. Digital terrestrial television is also known as DVB-T, DTT, Freeview in the UK, and TNT in France. UK residents, please note: Freeview HD or DVB-T2 is not supported.
That is all good and fine, but you have yet to say which programming you want to receive from which source(s).
 

GrowlingBadger

macrumors newbie
May 18, 2012
6
0
That is all good and fine, but you have yet to say which programming you want to receive from which source(s).
BBC HD freeview services (and any other HD ones that are going) which apparently are all broadcast DVB-T2, of which eyetv doesn't support; this, I thought, was the crux of this thread.
 

danckwerts

macrumors regular
Jun 7, 2008
141
88
Richmond upon Thames
PCTV Systems DVB-T2 290e

Anyone used this USB stick from Hauppage? It is said to support Macs. Not sure it would be much good for me as I currently rely on 2 inside aerials.
 

GrowlingBadger

macrumors newbie
May 18, 2012
6
0
Anyone used this USB stick from Hauppage? It is said to support Macs. Not sure it would be much good for me as I currently rely on 2 inside aerials.

Yeah i spotted this one, but it's not clear other vendor's website from the vendors website whether you actually need a windows PC for this (see minimum requirements):

http://www.pctvsystems.com/Products/ProductsEuropeAsia/Digitalproducts/PCTVnanoStickT2/tabid/248/language/en-GB/Default.aspx

would def be tempted if it doesn't need windows at all...