How to watch HD from a cable or satellite receiver on your Mac
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

How to watch HD from a cable or satellite receiver on your Mac


It's long perturbed me that I can't watch HD from a cable or satellite receiver on my Mac. Well, actually I (and you) can, though it's a bit of a kludge to make it happen. But, doggone it, I have a 27-inch iMac, and I was determined to find a solution.

If, like me, that's a goal of yours, here's how to to do it. My hardware/software brand of choice for viewing TV on my Mac is EyeTV from Elgato (http://www.elgato.com). Unfortunately, no EyeTV device can receive HD from a cable or satellite receiver. The only device that can do this is the third-party Hauppauge HD PVR (http://www.hauppauge.com/site/products/data_hdpvr.html). The unit comes with Windows software, but can also be used on the Mac (Intel systems only; PowerPC Macs need not apply) with EyeTV 3.1 or later.

The HD PVR captures video in the H.264 video format, using SD and HD resolutions. Audio can be AAC or AC3 (Dolby), depending on the source. That's good. But there are lots of gotchas to using it on the Mac.

The HD PVR doesn't have a tuner input for antenna or cable. The infrared remote receiver isn't supported, and the infrared remote blaster can't legally be supported on the Mac. The minimum firmware supported is 1.15, and the HD PVR must be "flashed" on a Windows machine using Hauppauge’s driver software before you can use it with EyeTV on your Mac.

In other words, you have to hook up the HD PVR to a PC and install the drivers before you can use it with a Mac. If you don't have a PC, you can use Boot Camp, install Windows and do it with your Mac. Or, better yet, get a friend with a PC to "flash" the Hauppauge device for you if, like me, you don't really want Windows on your Mac.

Once you've done all this, you can indeed receive HD from a cable or satellite receiver. As for me, I can now watch my Comcast line-up on my iMac. However, I'm unable to change the channel from the EyeTV channel menu. I can only change it by using the Comcast remote control.

That's normal, and the HD PVR is working normally because the video connections to the HD PVR are only one-way -- outgoing from the cable box. There's literally no way for your Mac to make itself "heard" by the set-top box.

A third party product can simulate the remote signal and allow you to change channels on your cable box directly from the EyeTV 3 software, as described here.

This set-up isn't the smooth solution I'd prefer, but it works (though I hear that Elgato may be working on a solution). My Mac is now my personal computer, stereo, DVD player and sometimes-TV. Now to move onto a Blu-ray workaround...

-- Dennis Sellers

 
AAPL
$110.37
Apple Inc.
-1.97
GOOG
$606.25
Google Inc.
-8.09
MSFT
$43.50
Microsoft Corporation
+0.14
MacNews Search:
Community Search:
view counter

view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter

You Can Play Madfinger Games' Unkil...
Madfinger Games - probably best known for the Dead Trigger series - has officially launched their newest zombie shooter (that isn't called Dead Trigger), named Unkilled. [Read more] | Read more »
KORG iELECTRIBE for iPhone (Music)
KORG iELECTRIBE for iPhone 1.0.1 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Music Price: $9.99, Version: 1.0.1 (iTunes) Description: ** 50% OFF Special Launch Sale - For a Limited Time **The ELECTRIBE reborn in an even smaller form A full-fledged rhythm machine for iPhone | Read more »
I am Bread (Games)
I am Bread 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: ‘I am Bread’ is the latest quirky adventure from the creators of 'Surgeon Simulator', Bossa Studios. This isn't the best thing since sliced bread . . . it is sliced bread!9/10 - SteamWired - 'I am Bread is the strangest game you... | Read more »
Rock(s) Rider - HD Edition (Games)
Rock(s) Rider - HD Edition 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: *** PLEASE NOTE: Compatible with iPhone 4s, iPad 2, iPad mini, iPod touch (5th generation) or newer ***Do you dare? Do you want to overcome your limits? Test yourself and face the boss and his gang! | Read more »
Rebuild 3: Gangs of Deadsville (Games)
Rebuild 3: Gangs of Deadsville 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: It's been a few years since the zombpocalypse turned the world's cities into graveyards and sent the few survivors into hiding. Now you must gather them up and restore civilization to a ruined city, one building... | Read more »
Power Ping Pong (Games)
Power Ping Pong 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Do you wield your bat with zen-like focus or do your balls of fury give you a killer spin? Table tennis goes mobile with a twist in Power Ping Pong. | Read more »
Z.O.N.A Project X (Games)
Z.O.N.A Project X 1.00 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.00 (iTunes) Description: Z.O.N.A Project X - shooter in the post-apocalyptic world. | Read more »
Trick Shot (Games)
Trick Shot 1.0.6 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0.6 (iTunes) Description: A game where all you have to do is throw a ball into a box, simple?Trick Shot is a minimalist physics puzzler with 90 levels and an infinite supply of bouncy balls to get that perfect shot. Trick Shot | Read more »
VoxelCity (Games)
VoxelCity 1.0.2 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0.2 (iTunes) Description: Looking for a new city builder? Tired of social media anti-games with no strategy? Look no further!NO IAP EVER!VoxelCity is a strategy game at its core. Balance your finances, keep your people happy, and provide them with the... | Read more »
Goat Simulator MMO Simulator (Games)
Goat Simulator MMO Simulator 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: ** IMPORTANT - SUPPORTED DEVICESiPhone 4S, iPad 2, iPod Touch 5 or better.**Coffee Stain Studios brings next-gen Goat MMO simulation to mobile devices. You no longer have to fantasize about being a simulated goat... | Read more »
All contents are Copyright 1984-2010 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.