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TVHarmony Home Entertainment Product Tracker

Last Updated: 12/10/04

Table of Contents

  1. Retail PVRs (Tivo Based)
    1. Tivo Series 2
    2. Humax T2500 (300 hour)
    3. Humax DRT800 DVD-R
    4. Hughes HR10-250 HDTV
  2. Retail PVRs (ReplayTV Based)
    1. ReplayTV 5504 (40 hour)
  3. Retail PVRs (MCE2005 Based)
  4. Software Based PVRs
    1. BeyondTV (Windows)
    2. Freevo (Linux)
    3. GB-PVR (Windows)
    4. Microsoft MCE 2005 (Windows)
    5. MythTV (Linux)
    6. SageTV (Windows)
  5. Time Shifted Radio
    1. RadioShark
    2. Replay Radio
  6. Digital Media Receivers
    1. ActionTec Wireless Media Player
    2. MediaMVP
  7. Personal Media Player
    1. Archos AV420
    2. Creative Zen Portable Media Center
  8. TV MPEG Capture Cards
    1. AverMedia UltraTV 1500MCE
    2. Hauppauge WinTV PVR 150MCE
    3. Hauppauge WinTV PVR 250
    4. Hauppauge WinTV PVR 350
    5. Plextor PX-TV402U

Retail PVRs (Tivo Based)

Tivo Series 2 (40Hr)

Street Price: Amazon.com ($170.94 - $100 Rebate), Buy.com ($184.99 - $100 Rebate), Current Ebay Auctions, Current Ebay Auctions (Lifetime Sub)

Product Info

Company: Tivo
Product Page: Tivo Series 2

Technical Specifications

Recording capacity: Up to 40 hours
Dimensions: 15" width x 11.5" depth x 3" height
Video In: S-Video (1), Composite Video (1), RF Coax (1)
Audio In: Stereo L/R RCA (1 pair)
Video Out: S-Video (1)Composite Video (2)RF Coax (1) with 3/4 switch
Control Out: Mini-jack IR (1)
Mini-jack Serial (1)
Expansion Port: USB (2)
Remote Control: IR - 34 Button
Power: 120VAC, 60 Hz, 40W
(with detachable cord)
Telephone: RJ-11 female

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
PC Magazine 1/13/04  
Amazon Ongoing User submitted reviews
Epinions Ongoing User submitted reviews

Humax Tivo T2500 (300 hour)

Street Price: Amazon.com ($549.94 - $100 Rebate), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Company: Humax
Product Page: Humax T2500
Other Docs: Datasheet (PDF)

Technical Specifications

Recording capacity: Up to 300 hours
Dimensions: 15" width x 11.5" depth x 3" height
Video In: S-Video (1), Composite Video (1), RF Coax (1)
Audio In: Stereo L/R RCA (1 pair)
Video Out: S-Video (1)Composite Video (2)RF Coax (1) with 3/4 switch
Control Out: Mini-jack IR (1)
Mini-jack Serial (1)
Expansion Port: USB (2)
Remote Control: IR - 34 Button
Power: 120VAC, 60 Hz, 40W
(with detachable cord)
Telephone: RJ-11 female

TVHarmony References

None

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
CNet 9/8/04 "If you need a supersize TiVo, this is the one to get."

Humax Tivo DRT800 DVD-R

Street Price: Amazon.com ($449.88), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Company: Humax
Product Page: Humax DRT800
Other Docs: Datasheet (PDF)

Technical Specifications

Recording capacity: Up to 80 hours
DVD Recording Format: DVD-R/RW
DVD Playback: DVD Video, DVD-R/RW, CD-R/RW, A/V CD
Dimensions: 15" width x 11.5" depth x 3" height
Video In: S-Video (1), Composite Video (1), RF Coax (1)
Audio In: Stereo L/R RCA (1 pair)
Video Out: S-Video (1)Composite Video (2)RF Coax (1) with 3/4 switch
Control Out: Mini-jack IR (1)
Mini-jack Serial (1)
Expansion Port: USB (2)
Remote Control: IR - 34 Button
Power: 120VAC, 60 Hz, 40W
(with detachable cord)
Telephone: RJ-11 female

TVHarmony References

 

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
CNet 11/16/04 8.3 out of 10

Hughes HR10-250 DIRECTV HDTV Tivo

Street Price: eCost ($869.99), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Company: DirecTV
Product Page: DirecTV HR10-250
Other Docs: Datasheet (PDF)

Technical Specifications

Recording capacity: Up to 200 hours (30 hours HDTV)
DVD Recording Format: DVD-R/RW
DVD Playback: DVD Video, DVD-R/RW, CD-R/RW, A/V CD
Dimensions: 15" width x 11.5" depth x 3" height
Tuners Inputs: Satellite (2) ATSC (1)
Video Out: HDMI (1) Component (1) S-Video (1)Composite Video
Audio Out: Digital Optical (1) Stereo L/R RCA (1 pair)
Video Resolutions: 480i, 480p, 720p and 1080i
Expansion Port: USB (2)
Remote Control: IR - 39 Button

TVHarmony References

 

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
ExtremeTech.com 10/26/04 "The poorly implemented HDMI port gives me pause"
Thomas Hawk 7/12/04 Comparison with MCE 2004
HomeTheatreSpot 6/6/04 "I would have to say we have a winner"
DocDVD.com 5/14/04 "Short of not having the Home Media Option as of late, this bad boy really does have everything you would need..."
Epinions Ongoing User submitted reviews

Retail PVRs (ReplayTV Based)

ReplayTV 5504 (40 Hour)

Street Price: Amazon.com ($99.74 - $50 rebate), Current Ebay Auctions, Current Ebay Auctions (Lifetime Sub)

Product Info

Company: Digital Networks
Product Page: ReplayTV 5504

Technical Specifications

Recording capacity: Up to 80 hours
DVD Recording Format: DVD-R/RW
DVD Playback: DVD Video, DVD-R/RW, CD-R/RW, A/V CD
Dimensions: 15" width x 11.5" depth x 3" height
Video In: Composite Video (2), RF Coax (1)
Audio In: Stereo L/R RCA (2 pair)
Video Out: Component (1) S-Video (1)Composite Video (2)RF Coax (1)
Control Out: Mini-jack IR (1)
Remote Control: IR

TVHarmony References

None

 

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
PCMagazine 3/3/04 "ReplayTV is Avis to TiVo's Hertz; both are proven companies offering similar goods."
CNet 10/7/03 7.7 out of 10
Amazon.com Ongoing User submitted reviews
Epinions Ongoing User submitted reviews

Retail PVRs (MCE2005 Based)

Software Based PVRs

BeyondTV

Street Price: Amazon.com ($58.99)

Product Info

Company: SnapStream
Product Page: BeyondTV
Platform: Windows
Tuners: Supports Multiple Tuners

System Requirements

OS: Windows 200, Windows XP
DirectX 9.0 or greater
CPU: 700Mhz and above (with hardware encoding), 1.5Ghz (w/o encoding)
RAM: 256MB
Disk: 15GB
Video Card: nVidia GeForce 2 and above, ATI Radeon 7500 and above
Internet Access

TVHarmony References

Other References


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
PVRBlog.com 12/7/04 "...Beyond TV makes this 70-year-old technology feel like something new."
HTPCNews 12/1/04 "Pro: ULTRA HIGH WAF Rating"
Build Your Own PVR 12/1/04 8 out of 10
Maiku Blog 11/29/04 "Overall Beyond TV is a polished product that's well worth trying. "
TVHarmony 11/18/04 "...easy to install and use, but it still has a lot of advanced features for the geek in all of us"
Toronto Free Press 10/22/04  
AnandTech.com 8/24/04 "Beyond TV 3.5 is an evolutionary step forward."
PCMagazine 4/20/04 PCMagazine Editor's Choice
CNet 3/29/04 7.3 out of 10

Freevo

Street Price: Donations Accepted

Product Info

Website: Freevo
Platform: Linux
Tuners: TBD

System Requirements

TBD

TVHarmony References

 

Other References

None

Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
None Yet.      

GB-PVR

Street Price: Donations Accepted

Product Info

Website: GB-PVR
Platform: Windows
Tuners: Supports Multiple Tuners

System Requirements

OS: Windows 2000 or XP
Additional OS Requirements: .Net v1.1 (free download)
Tuners Supported:

  • Hauppauge PVR250, PVR250MCE, "Roslyn/Blackbird", PVR350, PVR USB2 cards
  • Adaptec VideOh.
  • Provideo PV258, PV259, PV358T
  • Leadtek PVR2000
  • Avermedia M150
  • Pinnacle PCTV Deluxe USB
  • PixelView PlayTV@P7000
  • Generic Conexant "Blackbird" based card
  • Plextor PX-M402U
  • Lifeview TV Walker
  • Generic GO7007SB based capture device

TVHarmony References

Other References

None

Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
TVHarmony 9/29/04 "...it is a distributed PVR that is hard to beat."

Microsoft's Media Center Edition 2005

Street Price: Current Ebay Auctions (Use Caution: This is unauthorized way for vendors to sell this product)

Product Info

Website: MCE 2005
Platform: Windows
Tuners: Supports Multiple Tuners

System Requirements

Currently only sold with hardware. For tuner cards, look for MCE certified cards.

TVHarmony References

Other References

None

Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
TomsHardware.com 10/14/04 "Now Microsoft expands the PC to the home with flexible distribution and a common user interface before - provided you're ready to make a few concessions."
CNet 10/12/04 "MCE 2005 is second to none as a desktop DVR app"

MythTV

Street Price: Donations Accepted

Product Info

Website: MythTV
Platform: Linux
Tuners: Supports Multiple Tuners

System Requirements

TBD

TVHarmony References

Other References


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
None Yet      

SageTV

Street Price: SageTV Online Store ($79.95)

Product Info

Website: SageTV
Platform: Windows
Tuners: Supports Multiple Tuners

System Requirements

OS: Windows 98SE, 2000, ME, XP, or MCE
RAM: 128MB
CPU: PIII 600Mhz, Athlon 600MHz, VIA 800MHz or higher

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
Gruntville 10/6/04 "Congratulations Frey on an excellent product, you've truly changed the way I interact with my Television."
Build Your Own PVR ??? 9.5 out of 10

Time Shifted Radio

RadioShark

Street Price: Griffin Online Store ($69.99), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: Griffin Technology
Platform: Windows / Macintosh

Specifications

TBD

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
Associated Press 11/7/04 Radio lovers will love the Shark
Idealog

10/9/04

"... it will make a great holiday gift for the NPR junkie in your family."


Replay Radio

Street Price: Online Store ($29.95)

Product Info

Website: Replay Radio
Platform: Windows

System Requirements

Windows 98 or Later
Soundcard
Internet Connection

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
TVHarmony 11/10/04 "I can't imagine getting through my commute any other way."

Digital Media Receivers

ActionTec Wireless Media Player

Street Price: Buy.com ($170.99 ), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: ActionTec
Platform: Windows

Specifications

  • Supports MP3, AC3, AAC, WAV, WMA and Ogg Vorbis audio formats
  • Supports JPEG, GIF, animated GIF, TIF, BMP, and PNG image formats
  • Digital audio: 18-bit stereo and S/PDIF
  • Supports the following video formats: MPEG1/2/4, Xivd, RMP4
  • RCA connectors for 2 left and 2 right stereo audio output and composite video output for Dolby 5.1, DTS, MTS, Surround Sound
  • Digital Optical Output available for true sound fidelity without the need for RCA Cabling
  • Support for HDTV

TVHarmony References

 

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
DesignTechnica 6/3/04 7 out of 10
PCMagazine 5/18/04 "provides a superior set of features... if you're comfortable going one-on-one with cantankerous gadgets"

 

MediaMVP

Street Price: Amazon.com ($89.99), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: MediaMVP
Platform: Windows

Specifications

  • Dedicated hardware decode support for MPEG-2 Transport Stream, MPEG-2 MP@ML, and MPEG
  • Decodes full CCIR601 resolution NTSC and PAL encoded MPEG-2 bit streams in real time, up to and including 720x480 (NTSC) or 720x576 (PAL).
  • Hardware audio decoder: MPEG-1 level 2 (MP3) or level 3 (PCM audio not supported at this time).
  • Decodes MPEG datarates from 1.5 Mbits/sec to 8 Mbits/sec
  • Video output: composite, S-Video and RGB (Scart equipped models only)
  • Upscales half screen resolution video to full screen. For example, MediaMVP will take 320x240 VCD video and play it full screen. It also offers a tunable Anti-Flicker Filter.
  • Three level anti-flicker filter
  • Outputs NTSC and PAL video, software selectable

TVHarmony References

 

Other References


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
TVHarmony 9/15/04  
PCMagazine 5/13/04 "it's cheap and good."
CNet 9/18/03 7.4 out of 10
Epinions Ongoing User submitted reviews
Amazon Ongoing User submitted reviews

Personal Media Players

Archos AV420

Street Price: Amazon.com ($467.24), Buy.com ($549.99 plus free speakers) eTronics.com ($589.99), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: Archos AV420
Platform: Windows

Features

  • Record between 80 and up to 400 hours of TV programs and video content from a TV, VCR, cable box, or satellite receiver using the TV cradle.
  • Program recordings using the Recording Scheduler, which directly controls the VCR or set-top box tuner.
  • Store and watch between 40 and up to 200 full-length movies.
  • Enjoy up to 4 ½ hours of video playback on the color LCD while on the go.
  • Download / transfer / record between 300 and up to 1500* hours of music.
  • Store and view between 200,000 and up to one million* JPEG photos.
  • Play MP3, WMA (including protected files) and WAV music files.
  • Listen to and record off the radio (with optional FM Radio & Remote Control).
  • Download and store files from a PC.

Full Specs: Here (PDF File)

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
Amazon.com Ongoing User submitted reviews

Creative Zen Portable Media Center

Street Price: Amazon.com ($448.84), Buy.com ($449.99), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: Creative Zen Portable Media Center
Platform: Windows

Features

  • Watch up to 85 hours of Movies, Recorded TV Programs or Home Videos1
  • Store and listen up to 9,000 songs!
  • Carry and enjoy up to tens of thousands of photos!
  • Large, high resolution 3.8" TFT LCD backlit for crisp and clear images
  • Removable and rechargeable Li-Ion Polymer Battery - carry a spare so your entertainment will never be cut short
  • Powerful Windows® Mobile operating system lets you easily sync, find and manage your digital entertainment
  • Quickly transfer content from your PC to your Zen Portable Media Center with USB 2.0
  • Built-in speaker means you can enjoy your movie or music with others
  • 4 presets buttons that shortcut to your favorite TV show, movie or song
  • Works with popular formats like WMV, WMA, MP3, JPG

Full Specs: Here

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
Amazon.com Ongoing User submitted reviews

Video MPEG Capture Cards

AverMedia UltraTV 1500MCE

Street Price: AverMedia Online Store ($79.99), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: UltraTV 1500MCE
Platform: Windows
PC Interface: PCI

Specifications

  • 75 Ohm Coaxial TV RF
  • Composite Video (S-Video to Composite Video Cable Required)
  • S-Video
  • FM Input
  • Audio Input
  • Dimensions: 3.6” x 3.48” x .69”
  • Weight: 0.41 lb
  • Warranty: 1 year limited parts & labor
  • Compliance: FCC Class B, CE

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
TBD      

Hauppauge WinTV PVR150MCE

Street Price: Amazon.com ($79.20), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: WinTV PVR 150MCE
Platform: Windows
PC Interface: PCI

Specifications

  • 125 channel cable ready TV tuner
  • High quality MPEG-2 video and audio encoder based on the Conexant -416 MPEG encoder
  • Composite/s-video plus stereo audio inputs to connect to VCR, camcorders or set top boxes
  • Auxiliary A/V header on-board for connecting to an audio/video input set
  • dbx-TV stereo decoder (Nicam stereo decoder in Europe)
  • FM radio receiver

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
TBD      

Hauppauge WinTV PVR250

Street Price: Amazon.com ($127.29), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: WinTV PVR 250
Platform: Windows
PC Interface: PCI

Features

  • Watch TV on your PC screen using a 125 channel cable ready TV tuner. Surf the net while you watch TV on your PC screen!
  • Record your TV shows to disk using the built-in hardware MPEG-2 encoder. Uses from 1-2 Gigabytes per hour of recorded video. While recording, the WinTV-PVRs' hardware MPEG encoder does all the work so your PC continues to run at full speed!
  • Pause your live TV shows with instant replay, fast forward and rewind.
  • Composite/S-Video and audio inputs, to connect to VCR or camcorders. Turn your home video tapes into MPEG movies, then burn them onto CD or DVD!
  • dbx-TV stereo decoder, for great TV sound.
  • WinTV-Scheduler, so you can schedule your TV recordings on a daily, weekly or once only schedule
  • WinTV-Editor, so you can cut and trim your videos without losing video quality!
  • Ulead® DVD MovieFactory 2™ to author and burn DVDs, Video CD's or S-VCD's. Play them on your home DVD* player!

TVHarmony References

None

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
Amazon.com Ongoing User submitted reviews

Hauppauge WinTV PVR 350

Street Price: Amazon.com ($170.04), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: WinTV PVR 350
Platform: Windows
PC Interface: PCI

Features

  • Watch TV on your PC screen using a 125 channel cable ready (or aerial) TV tuner. Surf the net while you watch TV on your PC screen!

  • Record your TV shows to disk using the built-in hardware MPEG-2 encoder. At DVD quality, 2 Gigabytes of disk space is used per hour of recorded video.

  • Play your video recordings on your TV set with the included hardware MPEG-2 decoder. Will play your recorded home videos, too!

  • Turn your home video tapes (or TV recordings) into MPEG movies, then burn them onto CD or DVD! The included Ulead® DVD MovieFactory™ allows you to author and burn Video DVD’s, S-VCD’s or video CD’s. Play them on your home DVD* player!

  • Pause live TV shows with instant replay, fast forward and rewind.

  • dbx stereo decoder, for great TV sound

  • Includes WinTV-Scheduler, so you can schedule your TV recordings on a daily, weekly or once only schedule. Includes TitanTV, the on-line TV program guide, for automatic scheduling of your TV recordings.

  • Includes the WinTV-Editor, so you can cut and trim your videos without losing video quality!

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
Build Your Own PVR ??? " I unabashedly recommend the PVR350..."
CNet 10/7/03 7.7 out of 10
Amazon.com Ongoing User submitted reviews
Epinions Ongoing User submitted reviews

Plextor PX-TV402U

Street Price: Amazon.com ($140.59), Current Ebay Auctions

Product Info

Website: PX-TV402U
Platform: Windows
PC Interface: USB 2.0

Specifications

  • NTSC/PAL/SECAM Video Capture
  • NTSC Only TV Tuner
  • DivX Hardware Encode (Home Theater, Portable, Handheld Formats)
  • MPEG-4 Hardware Encode (Microsoft Compatible)
  • MPEG-2/DVD Hardware Encode
  • MPEG-1/VCD Hardware Encode
  • Composite Video, S-Video, Composite Audio, RF/Coaxial Inputs
  • High Speed USB 2.0 Interface
  • Up to 720 x 480 Screen Resolution

 

TVHarmony References

Other References

None


Reviewer Rating Review Date Comments
Build Your Own PVR 12/7/04 8 out of 10
HTPCNews.com 12/6/04 "...the ability to do hardware DivX encoding is awesome!"
GotApex.com 11/24/04 "Make it $129 bucks, or heck, 100 as long as I'm wishing, and you got a perfect score. As it is, 8.5 of 10."
Amazon.com Ongoing User submitted reviews