July 19, 2006
On Beyond TV
I was just been introduced to the concept behind Beyond TV, available for download on the Snapstream website. Essentially TiVo on your laptop/PC - recording shows for playback on your laptop at a later date/time.
Your laptop needs to be within reach of your cable feed in order to record the shows. If you wanted to watch them on your TV, your laptop running Beyond TV would need to be near the TV, since the 'video out' from your laptop needs to talk to your TV.
You do need a TV tuner card for this to work however and recommendations include:
Hauppauge WinTV PVR-USB2: ($119.99)
Hauppauge PVR-150MCE: ($63.95)
I never tapped into the TiVo hype when they were offering life memberships and now that they've stopped offering them, I'm even less inclined. During the viral push over the past few years, they never moved me from a 'maybe' to 'I must have this,' although those who do, swear they couldn't live without it now, probably a bit how I feel about my iPod.
The only issue I have with the Beyond TV concept is the hard disk space required. I'm beyond the norm with an 80 gig laptop and yet even so, I only have 10 gig free with photos and music hogging up the majority.
Here's a table that shows how much hard disk you need to record different amounts of TV:
MPEG-2 format ("Good" quality level):
Hard Drive Space
10 GB 5 hours recording time
20 GB 11 hours recording time
40 GB 22 hours recording time
80 GB 44 hours recording time
120 GB 66 hours recording time
So while the concept is 'cool,' it doesn't move me to 'must have.' My brain thinks, "this will be too much work to set up" and slow down my laptop even more than it already is, reducing overall performance.
I suppose another option is to have a laptop solely dedicated to recording shows and if I had a live-in geek to set it up for me, perhaps I'd consider that option. Yet most American households can't afford to buy a spare 40+ GB laptop lying around dedicated to recording TV shows.
Still, cool concept. The beauty of living in the Valley is seeing so many 'cool concepts.'
Tag: Beyond TV
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