[mythtv-users] Cheapest card for capturing with MythTV?

Andrew Dodd atd7 at cornell.edu
Fri Mar 5 11:07:10 EST 2004

Quoting Steve Dorsey <steve at dorseygraphics.com>:

> I think I have a card that will play back video, now I need one to 
> capture.
> What's the cheapest card I can find for capturing? I guess it would 
> have to capture audio AND video, right?
Not necessarily.  Many of the old BT8x8 cards required you to hook up an audio
passthrough cable from the card to the sound card.  (Newer Bt878s have btaudio).

My advice:  Don't go cheap on the capture card.  It is one of the key factors in
defining your MythTV experience.  Last time I tried Myth with a dumb capture
card I was VERY disappointed with it.  With my new PVR-350 board, Myth works great.

Getting a PVR-x50 (or other ivtv board such as the Avermedia M179) will let you
record 720x480 at full framerate with little to no CPU usage.  If you use a dumb
capture card (cx88, bt8x8, etc.) you will eat lots of CPU and likely be
restricted to using a lower resolution.  In addition if you happen to have a DVD
recorder, the video output by ivtv boards can be (nearly) burned directly to DVD
with only a remuxing needed (Fast, I/O bound) as opposed to transcoding (Slow,
CPU bound.) for anything recorded with a "dumb" cap card.

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