[mythtv-users] Newbee questions prior to getting started

Danita Zanre danita at caledonia.net
Fri Dec 8 19:59:56 UTC 2006

Hello - I've been "following" the idea of doing MythTV since I saw a presentation on it at a conference last March.  I'm currently on the fence as to whether I should purchase a new Tivo 3 (I've been holding out on HDTV for awhile, although we have TVs that are HDTV ready), or building a MythTV.

So first, a bit about my abilities.  I have been using Linux for about 4 years now, and although I'm no great expert, I'm not afraid to compile modules from source, etc.  I also have some good buddies who know a lot more about Linux than I do who put up with my questions, so I've learned a lot since moving from Windows.  In my home office I currently have 4 workstations running Linux and three Linux servers - so I'm not a novice, although sometimes I realize that I ask somewhat "basic" questions.  All Linux boxes are some SuSE "flavor", ranging from 9.0 on my daughter's ancient laptop, to OpenSuSE 10, SLED 10, SLES9 and OES Linux.

We currently use DishNetwork and have a Tivo 2 (Humax) with a life-time subscription.  TiVo will transfer this to a new TiVo 3, but even then for the price I'm starting to think in geek mode, and I'm very interested in moving.  One of the reasons I haven't is that I didn't want to move off of satellite, but the TiVo 3 will also require that I move to cable, so maybe it's time to just rethink our entire entertainment package and do what "makes sense".  I mean, I believe I am correct that I can't use MythTV with my satellite receiver, but I CAN with a cable card from Comcast, for example.  If that's not correct, let me know!

My husband is a fairly light sleeper - our Tivo inside the armoir that houses the TV doesn't seem to bother him, but having my PC on during the night does.  My guess is that we will eventually want a "backend" system in the basement, and then a "frontend" system in our bedroom that can be on only when we wish to watch TV - does that sound right?  After that, my 15 year old daughter will probably demand a front-end in her room too :) - I'll start out with the "backend" in the bedroom since that's also where my office is, and where I do all of my tinkering <g> - so maybe my husband would get used to it, but who knows!  My understand is that the backend system should be a good quality case with a lot of space for storage and capture cards, etc., but that a frontend could be pretty small - all it really needs as far as hardware goes is a card to put the video out to the TV??

So, once I can get an idea that what I've listed above is workable, then I just need to figure out the best HDTV cards to get for the MythTV box that would work well with Comcast I guess!

Thanks for any advice!  I'll try not to be too annoying with too many newbee questions!


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