[mythtv-users] HDTV, Myth, and Cable television -- basic questions

Lane Schwartz dowobeha at gmail.com
Tue Dec 14 22:11:06 UTC 2004

On Mon, 13 Dec 2004 17:51:42 -0500, Micah Wedemeyer
<fanmail at micah-wedemeyer.net> wrote:

> 1. HDTV and Cable television
> ...
> ...in the future, I expect that eventually I will want HDTV.  But, I will
> still  want to watch mostly cable channels.  So, finally, a question: What is
> necessary to watch HDTV for cable television?  Do you think Myth will be able to
> do this, or will the channels be encrypted in such a way to make this
> impossible? 

It is not possible now, and likely will not be possible to watch HDTV
on cable TV channels using Myth.

> 2. pcHDTV and Broadcast flag - (Non-USA users: ignore this)
> ...
> The main question is: Will the pcHDTV 3000 allow for HDTV over cable?  Note: I'm
>  not asking for a guarantee here, just a "It's in the works..."  Mainly, I don't
> want to buy a card that is only for OTA HDTV and has no plans for cable.

There is talk that pcHDTV is working on QAM-capable firmware for the
pcHDTV 3000.

If the pcHDTV people provide QAM-capable firmware, then it should be
possible to use the pcHDTV 3000 to watch HDTV on cable TV - but *only*
if the particular channel is not encrypted. Most cable providers
encrypt some channels; many cable providers encrypt all channels.

> 3. MythTV and broadcast flag - (Non-USA users: ignore this)
> Assuming I miss the June date and buy a HDTV tuner card after that, what of the
> broadcast flag?  Anyone have any ideas how this might interact with MythTV?  I
> understand that it is a hardware issue, but perhaps it can be disabled by hacked
> drivers?  More basically, what is the point of it?  Can content providers send
> out a signal and force all copies of tv-show X to delete themselves?

The way I understand it, hardware manufactured after the cut-off date
will be required to honor the broadcast flag. No one knows for sure
what this will mean. Many people (me included) read the statute to
mean that if a show has the broadcast flag enabled, the tuner hardware
must prevent the show from being recorded.

If this reading is correct then a PVR (or HD-capable digital VCR) set
to record program X would not record program X if the content provider
enables the broadcast flag for program X.

Hope that helps,

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