[kwlug-disc] Configuring a WinTV-HVR-1600

unsolicited unsolicited at swiz.ca
Fri Feb 13 23:06:41 EST 2009

John recently went through a number of shenanigans with this card. He 
will be your best resource. He purchased (I think) the 150 which 
turned out to have your card in the box. Then discovered it wasn't 
Linux compatible (his rev.). I believe from other messages he gave up 
and went to a 350.

I have not used Hauppauge under Linux, yet. Despite that, other 
pertinent notes in-line.

Raul Suarez wrote, On 02/13/2009 9:30 PM:
> Just being masochist and for the fun of it I forked 24 dolars for a
> WinTV-HVR-1600 after reading that it was possible to use it in
> Linux.

You saw the factory direct sale ad too? 

> http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/Hauppauge_HVR-1600 I followed all the
> instructions to no avail. If I do a "ls /dev/vid*"I can see
> /dev/video0 /dev/video1 /dev/video24 and /dev/video32. I know that
> video0 is my webcam. Myth tv only shows /dev/video0 when
> configuring devices. I went to windows to see if it was the card
> but the crappy software that comes with the card is quite confusing
> to me. I select "Cable" and NTSC_M and it scans and finds a bunch

Cable / NTSC / NTSC_M is correct for Canada. (You are on cable; NTSC 
is the standard in Canada, vs. PAL; NTSC_M is the tag you most 
frequently see when configuring cards.)

> of channels, but it doesn't matter what channel I chose I get
> nothing. I am not a "TV" guy so there are several things that have
> me confused: - The card documentation says that it does not receive
> digital cable. - I have rogers cable and I'm paying for Digital
> cable. If I use the Rogers box I get all the channels. If I do not

Only a Rogers box can decrypt the incoming digital signals. Only out 
of the Rogers box can you get viewable _digital_ cable. Most Rogers 
boxes give you analogue out. Might be digital audio out, but won't 
likely be HDMI or DVI video out.

Rogers has allowed the public to assume their digital cable is digital 
video (hi def). The two are very different. Think of Rogers digital 
cable, for all intents and purposes, as ethernet. It's a separate data 
backbone for cable. Full stop. This is why you must register your 
terminal (think MAC address) with them - once registered, they allow 
their equipment to respond to your digital terminal's request to 
participate in their network. Over this connection comes standard or 
high definition TV. (Better video resolution / same audio).

> use the rogers box I just get the lower channels. Does that mean

You have just confirmed what I have heard but never actually seen: 
even with digital cable, you still get the (lower) analog channels 
without the Rogers box. But that's all you will get. (You could pay 
for the additional analog packages. If you ask (anyone) for it they 
will look at you funny, after all you have digital cable ...) [My 
point to Rogers was digital cable would instantly render my VCRs, 
PVRs, and TV-tuner cards useless. Which seemed to dumbfound them. <sigh>]

> that I always receiving digital cable even without the box and I
> cannot use this card? or if I'm not using the box I am actually
> getting analog cable and I should be able to use this card? - What
> type of NTSC should I select for Canada? On the Linux side - What
> could be the problem in Linux where MythTv do not recognize the
> device. At first dmesg showed that the vmalloc was too low so I set
> the kernel parameter to 256MB. Now I don't get that message but
> MythTv still does not see it. Any ideas? Raul Suarez

Consult with John, he just went through this. Apparently there are 
different Rev.'s of this card.

According to 
this is a 'Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-1600 MC Kit - ATSC HDTV receiver / 
analog TV tuner / video input adapter - PCI' card.

So, when you're running your tests, make sure you're screwed in to the 
analog side / tuner of this card. No Rogers box I know of has anything 
but composite / S-video / component video coming out of it. I suspect 
you could plug these into the card with a doohickey ('video input 
adapter') that came with the card, but more below.

If you could get a 'cable' connection out of the Rogers box, or a 
satellite box (= Rogers box as far as this discussion is concerned), 
you could plug into the ATSC tuner, but still would only get whatever 
is coming out of the digital / satellite box at the time. You could 
get a FTA (Free To Air) satellite dish (or antenna), and connect in to 
the ATSC tuner and be off to the races. IF there is FTA content you're 
interested in. Orion and other in town shops seem to have their heads 
around this stuff - they can advise what content is on FTA so you can 
see if it holds any interest for you. http://www.oo5.com/orion/. I 
can't find my links any more, but what links I had regarding FTA and 
content came from visiting them. I believe there is a website address 
in the window to the right of their door when you pull in.

I expect you are already using a set of outputs from your Roger's 
digital box to your TV. You may be able to use the other outputs from 
the box to the card - you will have to split the audio if you're not 
using digital audio to the TV. You will only see whatever the Rogers 
box is currently tuned to. e.g. You might be using composite out to 
your TV, you can probably then use component out to your card. Or vice 

I see in the Canada Computer description, but not the Factory Direct 
description, that the card comes with an IR blaster (emitter). If you 
didn't get an IR blaster, or don't have one, stop reading now.

I managed to pick up an MS MCE remote from factory direct, $20.00 at 
one point - just got lucky / happened to be there. 'Microsoft Windows 
xp Media Center Edition, Remote Control and Receiver for Media Center 
PC with Windows'. Comes with receiver and two IR blasters. Myth, etc. 
compatible. I don't see it on their site now. 
http://compeve.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=263. I 
don't even see remotes at http://www.microsoft.com/hardware these 
days. Keyboards and mice only. 

If you have a blaster, you plug one end into your card or ir receiver 
and lay the other end (emitter) on / near your digital cable box. Once 
you get the software going, you should be able to have the software 
record for you by it turning the digital box on at the right time and 
switching to the right channel. Again, you will only get whatever is 
playing out of the digital box at the time.

So, if you want to record one channel on your computer, and watch 
something else on your TV, you're going to have to get a 2nd digital 
cable box. Only Rogers can give you a doohickey that will decrypt 
their signal. [Not quite correct, you could buy most any Scientific 
Atlanta digital cable box, but you will still have to call Rogers with 
the boxes equivalent to a MAC address, and they will have to light you 
up. You will acquire a 2nd connection fee in the process.] 
IMO, Rogers will never come out with a computer card equivalent to the 
digital box. Just like they don't supply PVRs that can write discs, or 
that have both hard drive and writers - as my PVR does. [I'm in the 
same boat as you, with any of my 3 tuners, or PVR box. Digital cable 
will kill me.]

I heard rumours that Rogers will kill the analog signal entirely this 
year (presumably on digital cable customers). In any case, all analog 
will definitely be gone in 2011 - for all customers.

So, I'm keeping my eye out for alternate TV sources. Preferably 
internet, and probably preferably downloadable. Versus 'broadcasts' 
(e.g. podcasts) within a web browser, providing no means of capturing 
for later playback. 320x240 (or whatever) RSS feeds don't cut it.

Hope something in here helps.

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