Is EyeTV Worth The Money, and Other Related Questions

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Amblinman, Feb 18, 2008.

  1. Amblinman macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    #1
    I've been lusting after EyeTV since I first discovered it a couple of weeks ago (I'm new to the Mac world).

    The only reason I haven't pulled the trigger yet is because it sounds too good to be true. Also, I'm not quite clear on how it works.

    If I order the EyeTV 250, that's all I need to get set up and running, correct?

    I live in the Bay Area, and I have Comcast digital cable. Is it relatively easy connecting EyeTV's set top to my cable box? Does Comcast play nice with this hardware or are there any special "hacks" or "tricks" I'd need to perform?

    Does Elgato provide good customer service and support? Also, has anyone ever had trouble returning a bad product to them?

    Any help and advice you guys can provide will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. tderemigis macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2006
    #2
    i actually just purchased the eyetv 250 plus, during the sale they had during macworld. they were very helpful with shipping during that heavy traffic time. the product is good, but it is exactly what they say it is.
    it really helps to have a fast computer to run it, which it looks like you do. i tried it on my ibook g4 and it struggles, but its seamless on my macbook coreduo. the hd over the air looks great, and i havent even tried an antenna. i also havent tried it with my comcast hd box yet, so i cant comment on that. but i too would love to know of any tips or tricks out there.

    p.s. the wifi access feature is awesome.
     
  3. BaronvdB macrumors 6502

    BaronvdB

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    #3
    I also got the 250 plus during the macworld promo....i haven't used it a ton yet but it works great so far...i haven't even looked in to the wifi access feature yet so i'll have to check that out.
     
  4. justflie macrumors 6502a

    justflie

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2005
    Location:
    Red Sox Nation
    #4
    I love my EyeTV hybrid. The Wifi-Access is a great idea, but doesn't work too well for me. Scratch that, the feature itself works fine. But for some reason, it dramatically increases my logout/shutdown times. We're talking a normal time of 10 or 11 seconds increasing to a minute and a half. I'm working with the very helpful tech support staff at Elgato to figure it out. That's another reason to get an EyeTV rather than a competing brand; they stand behind their products. Tech support is excellent and friendly.
     
  5. applemacman macrumors member

    applemacman

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2007
    Location:
    Dallas, Tx.
    #5
    I had the eyeTV 250 (sold it a month ago)...I moved and could not find one of the cables...contacted Elgato and they shipped me one free of charge in like a week...two days later found the cable :rolleyes:

    the eyeTV does exactly what it says...originally I was going to set-up a series recording for my favorite shows and either burn to DVD/:apple:Tv/Hard Drive but was to lazy and could not justify it given the amount I used it (and I needed cah at the time)
     
  6. rouxeny macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2008
    #6
    How well does it work with cable boxes?

    I have Time Warner cable and run through a cable box. My understanding is that in order to change channels, I'd have to change channels on the cable box itself and not through the TV? Is that correct?

    How many over the air HD channels are there? I'd love to bypass my box entirely, but I'm not sure how good that would look.
     
  7. wayland1985 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    #7
    I'm curious as well. How much of a resource hog is it? Can you run other programs while watching the tv simultaneously?
     
  8. tuxtpenguin macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Location:
    TX
    #8
    I haven't pulled the trigger on purchasing one of these yet as I'm not sure how much it would get used. I have wanted one, though.
     
  9. DHart macrumors 6502

    DHart

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #9
    I was really excited about trying this until close study revealed that it will not work with a cable box nor satellite receiver to receive HD-TV. I ditched the eyeTV idea and bought a 26" Samsung HD-TV which I totally love.

    EyeTV does have some great features and a great concept, but the inability to receive Hi-Def and premium channels from my cable box was a deal killer for me.

    FROM the EyeTV website:

    Which EyeTV products support HDTV?


    There are two possible HDTV formats that some EyeTV products can support:

    HDTV over Antenna (ATSC or DVB)

    EyeTV Hybrid
    EyeTV 500
    TVMini HD
    EyeTV DVB-T products used in Australia
    HDHomeRun

    The European standard used to broadcast HDTV in MPEG-4 AVC and H.264 is not yet supported by EyeTV 2.

    HDTV over unencrypted digital cable (Clear QAM)

    EyeTV 500
    HDHomeRun
    TVMini HD

    Please note that Clear QAM represents only a few, random channels out of hundreds of digital cable channels. There is no guarantee that you will receive any one channel, or even any channels, when using a Clear QAM tuner with your particular cable service. Clear QAM support does work, but it will not replicate your full cable lineup.

    ATSC and Clear QAM are formats primarily used in North America, and not in Europe or Australia.


    No EyeTV product can receive HDTV from an external receiver, like a cable box or satellite receiver.
     
  10. DocMacPS macrumors newbie

    DocMacPS

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    Location:
    Palm Springs, CA
    #10
    EyeTV is a Great Product

    I've been computing for a Quarter Century+ and seriously, of ALL the gizmos I've bought over the years I LOVE MY EYE-TV! And I'm not much of a TV watcher! But given a clean signal and a fast modern Mac Elgato's EyeTV software just keeps getting better and better and is a great addition to any Mac setup. http://mac-digital-tv-tuners.com/ features some great options for getting started with television on your Mac. For as little as $50 you could get a TV Micro unit and putter with Analog TV on your Mac - and a year or three down the road as the transition to all Digital occurs, you'd have a much better choice of Digital tuners to upgrade to.
     
  11. atari1356 macrumors 68000

    atari1356

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2004
    #11
    I have an EyeTV Hybrid and love it (the EyeTV software is great).

    In fact, I don't own a regular TV anymore. Our old one broke a long time ago, but the EyeTV receives digital HD channels well enough (with a decent antenna) that we decided not to replace it. Now I just record the few shows we want to watch, and watch them on the computer. (and most other stuff I can find on hulu.com or just wait for a DVD release)
     
  12. Motley macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2005
    #12
    To work with cable boxes you'd need an ir blaster and some additional sw.
    From el gato's website. Also I've never tried setting up an ir blaster so I don't know how easy it is/isn't.
     
  13. mike12806 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #13
    It is most definitely worth the money, especially at $99 for the hybrid. I would, however, wait a little bit for EyeTv 3.1 or 3.0.1 to come out, as EyeTv 3.0 and 10.5.2 seem to be a buggy combo. Otherwise, it's a very "apple-esque" tv tuner implementation.
     
  14. catchdry macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    Location:
    Norway
    #14
    Works to import from dvd-camera to mac?

    Will it work as an "in between" with my dvd-camera (mini dvd discs) and my mac? The camera only has an s-video output...
     
  15. justflie macrumors 6502a

    justflie

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2005
    Location:
    Red Sox Nation
    #15
    Yup. Well, at least mine would (Hybrid). I'm pretty sure they all come with an "AV Breakout Cable." This has hookups for RCA Audio/Video and S-Video in.
     
  16. catchdry macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    Location:
    Norway
    #16
    Great.
    Then I will be ordering Eye TV 250 Plus with a macBook Pro as soon it is getting updated.

    Been looking for a product that could import my mini-dvds ffor a long time. Now I have found it:)
     
  17. mmccaskill macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2007
  18. atarin macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago
    #18
    I bought the Philips MANT 510 at Amazon. It's inexpensive, small (table-top), and I get crystal clear signals. The only HD station broadcasting in my area that I can't get is CBS. That doesn't bother me, because I never watch CBS, and it is reportedly near impossible to get CBS unless you live in downtown Chicago near the antenna, anyway. I bought one for my mom, too, and the condo she lives in gets horrible reception (roof antenna, cell phones), but she gets a great signal with the Philips antenna. I swear by it!
     
  19. DocMacPS macrumors newbie

    DocMacPS

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    Location:
    Palm Springs, CA
    #19
    No Easy Answers when it comes to antennas

    Well there's really no such thing as an HD antenna; they simply receive TV signals. It's only marketing and packaging that decided it would be smart to call the same antenna they've sold for years as 'HD Ready!' :) The 'best' place to buy one is one that has a hassle-free no questions asked return policy if the antenna you buy isn't right for your unique situation.

    The 'right' antenna depends on several things: Are you urban or rural?
    Are the stations you want to receive Analog, Digital or both?
    Are they all in the UHF 14-69 range or in VHF 2-13 range - or Both? After the Feb 2009 switchover some stations may get REASSIGNED to a new frequency - so you may find what was analog on UHF may end up digital as VHF. Or that some stations broadcasting Digital now - aren't doing it at full-power until the switchover - so marginal channels may come in loud and clear in Feb!
    Are the closest transmission towers all in the same area (Often clustered on a hillside) - or in different places? (Unidirectional vs Omni)
    Are there hills, trees, big buildings nearby? Topology can make a huge difference.

    On it's simplest level. If you're urban and within 15mi or less of your towers an indoor antenna is usually AOK, beyond that ya gotta start thinking outdoor antenna and possibly amplified - and worst case - huge rooftop antenna with a rotor!

    Doc http://www.mac-digital-tv-tuners.com/
     
  20. CleverUsername macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2008
    #20
    I've been eyeing the Hybrid model for a couple months now, to use with my MBP when I finally get it ordered. So far, Newegg seems to have the best price on these, but is there anywhere else I should check? Also, I've been wondering if I will be able to use it as a line out to play things from my computer on my TV as well as vice versa, or will I need another adapter to do that?
     
  21. Tastannin macrumors 6502

    Tastannin

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    UT
    #21
  22. CleverUsername macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2008
    #22
    I'd been looking at OWC for RAM, but never thought to check for this! Thanks :D That other link seems to be all about hooking up a game system, and says I'll need some type of distribution amplifier to send stuff to my TV? When I said 'play things' I actually meant 'play TV shows/movies that I have saved on my computer, or maybe stream some shows from online'...I really didn't make myself very clear :eek: Maybe I should just call Elgato to make sure I'm not confusing the issue :)
     

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