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
$100.75
Apple Inc.
+0.64
GOOG
$577.36
Google Inc.
+1.00
MSFT
$46.36
Microsoft Corpora
-0.08
MacNews Search:
Community Search:

Latest Forum Discussions

See All
view counter

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

apeFilter (Music)
apeFilter 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Music Price: $6.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Shred It! Review
Shred It! Review By Jennifer Allen on September 30th, 2014 Our Rating: :: GORGEOUS BUT BASICUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad It might look lovely, but Shred It! is a pretty shallow endless runner/snowboarding game.   | Read more »
It Came From Canada: Angry Birds: Transf...
Anyone afraid that throwing Transformers into the Angry Birds mix would result in a Michael Bay-level of childhood pillaging can rest easy. While Rovio’s famous fowls may be a 21st century staple, Angry Birds: Transformers wears its affection for the 80s on its sleeve. But is mere retro reverence enough to justify this crossover? We find out in... | Read more »
Galaxy Trucker Review
Galaxy Trucker Review By Rob Thomas on September 30th, 2014 Our Rating: :: IN FOR THE LONG HAULiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad We got a great big convoy, rockin’ through the night… the endless night of outer space, that is. And the ships are made out of pipes. Don’t question it. It’s Galaxy Trucker and it’s now on iPad! | Read more »
Moon and Sun – children’s book Review
Moon and Sun – children’s book Review By Amy Solomon on September 30th, 2014 Our Rating: Moon and Sun is a fable-like children’s book with lush illustrations.   Developer: Marcio Monteiro Price: $3.99 Version: 1.0 App Reviewed on: iPad 3 | Read more »
Kairosoft Finally Brings The Pyraplex to...
Kairosoft Finally Brings The Pyraplex to iOS Posted by Jessica Fisher on September 30th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Yeti’s Parole Officer Review
Yeti’s Parole Officer Review By Jennifer Allen on September 30th, 2014 Our Rating: Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Yeti’s Parole Officer proves that looks aren’t everything in this entertaining, if plain, piece of interactive fiction.   | Read more »
Record Keeper and World Wide Words – Two...
Record Keeper and World Wide Words – Two New Final Fantasy Games Arrive on iOS in Japan Posted by Ellis Spice on September 30th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
iPollute Review
iPollute Review By Nadia Oxford on September 30th, 2014 Our Rating: :: iPOLLUTE, uPOLLUTEUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad iPollute is a delightful-looking pollution simulator, though it’s a bit light on “game” content.   | Read more »
This Week at 148Apps: September 22-26, 2...
Your Source For The Latest App Reviews   | Read more »
All contents are Copyright 1984-2010 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.