ehMac banner

1 - 20 of 40 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,286 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
After playing with the device and putting it through it's paces for over a week, ehMac.ca has created an in-depth video review of the Elgato eyetv HD high definition video recorder for your Mac! With the amount of material to cover on this device, the review was divided into two parts. You can click either of the links below to jump to that video to view directly on YouTube in full HD.

Part 1: Elgato eyetv HD Review - Intro & Setup

Part 2: Elgato eyetv HD Review - In Use

What is the Elgato eyetv HD?

High Definition Video Recording Hardware
The EyeTV HD is a small USB 2.0 connected device with a built built in hardware HD recording system. It captures HD video via component inputs. This allows it to record the high-definition output from a set top box or other HD source.

Works with Canadian Cable or Satellite boxes
The EyeTV HD incorporates an infrared control system which allows the EyeTV software to seamlessly control the satellite or cable box from companies like Rogers or Bell for automatic recordings.

H.264 Recordings
The EyeTV HD records in quality H.264, the standard format Apple uses for iTunes, Apple TV and playing content on your Mac, iPhone and iPad.

Unique dual-format capture mode
EyeTV HD records in full HD in H.264 format, and features a unique dual-format capture mode so that can you record in HD and iPhone format at the same time. This feature allows really fast exports to iTunes from EyeTV, and facilitates the streaming of live and recorded TV to an iPhone or iPad using the optional EyeTV app which sells for $4.99 in the Canadian iTunes App Store.

Full Featured High Definition DVR (Digital Video Recorder)
The EyeTV HD is powered by the slick EyeTV 3 software for Macintosh. EyeTV includes features you’d find in a well-roundedt DVR system like a TIVO. Starting with the basics like pausing live TV and automatically recording your favorite shows, and extending to advanced features like its built-in editor for removing commercials and the ability to stream to iPhones, and iPads, which is a really cool, impressive feature.

EyeTV HD vs other EyeTV devices
In addition to video capture capabilities, all previous EyeTV hardware devices (i.e. EyeTV Hybrid, EyeTV 250 Plus) have incorporated TV tuners in their designs. The EyeTV HD is different in that it is a video capture device but does not contain a tuner. It depends on the satellite or cable box to handling the tuning function. This is what makes it possible to watch and record premium TV content in Canada with the EyeTV HD. The set top box handles the descrambling of the encrypted content, and the EyeTV HD hardware handles the recording.

Overall thoughts
Looking from afar at this device, it kind of felt like it was going to be one of those intimidating devices that would have a million complicated options and kind of be hard to setup. While the Elgato eyetv HD does have a lot of options, I found the setup of the device very straightforward, and most of the features were easily discovered without even cracking the manual.

The software is quite slick and fun to use, but the real gem and "Mac Moment" I had with the device was controlling it remotely from my iPhone... Being able to watch live TV out on the road and also being able to control it's recording functions. Perfect if you forget to record your favourite episode, or if someone tells you about a new TV program you should watch.

I put the Elgato eyetv HD up there as one of those really cool gadgets that most Mac users will love.

My only complaint was the physical remote. The buttons are not clearly labelled as to their function and I actually found the buttons not very responsive. I had to click very hard on the buttons, sometimes two or three times to get to work.

At first I was kind of confused on how to get the image to my TV. I thought my Rogers PVR should still be spitting the signal out to my receiver. I was just in the wrong mindset on how the device would work. After a few moments of scratching my head, I realized that my Mac would be the device spitting out the video to my receiver. With a Macbook Pro, it isn't really an ideal setup to always plug in my Mac, but I could see with this setup, a Mac Mini working perfectly, with the Mac Mini plugging directly into the receiver with HDMI and being a permanent part of my home theatre. When I've saved enough pennies to get a Mac Mini, that's just what I plan to do!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,286 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Anyone here own the Elgato eyetv HD or any of the previous Elgato products? Anyone have any questions on the eyetv HD? I've still got the product here setup and would be happy to run any tests or answer any questions. ;)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,559 Posts
is there a client app for OS X? meaning can you stream the elgato to other macs on your network (like a slingbox), or can you only do this to an iOS device?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,286 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
is there a client app for OS X? meaning can you stream the elgato to other macs on your network (like a slingbox), or can you only do this to an iOS device?
Hey i-rui, good question. Sorry for delay, I was having a little nap. Up until 6AM this morning. :eek: XX)

Sort of, there is something called EyeTV sharing.

Ones archive of recordings can be shared with other EyeTV 3 users on your local network on ethernet or wireless (similar to the sharing functionality in iPhoto and iTunes). Shared libraries show up in the sidebar, and you can browse and play them, in standard or HD, just the same as if they were on your own Mac.

As in iPhoto and iTunes, you need to enable shared access to your own EyeTV Archive. In EyeTV 3’s Sharing preferences, enable “Share my EyeTV Archive”. If you’d like to access other users’ EyeTV Archives and have them displayed in the sidebar of the Programs window, check the option to “Look for shared EyeTV Archives”.

 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,559 Posts
i see, but nothing for live streaming, correct?

It's a shame Elgato doesn't release a simple port of the iOS app to OS X. I was considering replacing a slingbox with one of these. The mac support from sling media gets worse & worse every year.
 

·
tilting at windmills
Joined
·
3,667 Posts
Questions:

Have you tried (or known someone who has been successful) in using a Harmony remote for this EyeTV?

Can you set up series recordings of all new episodes of certain shows?

I wonder why they did not include HDMI, relying instead on composite and separate audio cables.

Cheers
 

·
Bald by choice
Joined
·
9,055 Posts
Anyone here own the Elgato eyetv HD or any of the previous Elgato products? Anyone have any questions on the eyetv HD? I've still got the product here setup and would be happy to run any tests or answer any questions. ;)
I have and use the Elgato eyeTV 250 plus, my only complaint is the fact that they force you into a contract with TV Guide for scheduling and watching.
TV Guide cannot seem to get the channel lineup correct for my area V9R6N6 which makes scheduling recordings a real challenge if not impossible at times.
I've had many dealings with Elgato support over this issue, they have even given me subscription extentions so now I have an inaccurate program guide for a longer period.:mad:

PS: as of yet, I have not figured out any method for scheduling recording without using the built in TV guide channel lineup.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
23,273 Posts
This review picked up by MacSurfer.

See the text in Monday Highlights as well as further down in the Reviews section of Reviews/How-To/Tutorials/Tips.

Congrats, Mr. Mayor.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
378 Posts
Anyone here own the Elgato eyetv HD or any of the previous Elgato products? Anyone have any questions on the eyetv HD? I've still got the product here setup and would be happy to run any tests or answer any questions. ;)
Is a HD receiver a must ? I currently use Shaw/StarChoice digital satellite receiver. Does the Elgato work with the AppleTV 2 or do they remain as separate entities ? Example: could you record a NetFlicks movie ?

Well done explantions of hooking up the unit and using Elgato via YouTube
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,286 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
i see, but nothing for live streaming, correct?

It's a shame Elgato doesn't release a simple port of the iOS app to OS X. I was considering replacing a slingbox with one of these. The mac support from sling media gets worse & worse every year.
Hey i-rui, digging into this a bit more, it appears there is actually a way to do this. Back in the day when Apple and/or the carriers still blocked 3G for video streaming apps Elgato wrote a web app called Live3G as a workaround. Elgato still has this available, on iOS devices as well as on Macs with Snow Leopard, the latest version of Safari, and pop up blockers disabled.

The web app connects your iPhone to your Mac using HTTP live streaming. Users log in using the same “My EyeTV” username and password that you created in the EyeTV application. (Which I go through in the setup video)

If you're on a local network, you can access the server like this ("IP-address" is the machine running EyeTV): http://<IP-adress>:2170/eyeTV/



One can just bookmark the live3g.eyetv.com on their iPhone’s home screen and as I mentioned, works on Macs with Snow Leopard, the latest version of Safari, and pop up blockers disabled.

I also learned that web apps have access to TV-out on your iPhone, so as an added benefit, you can watch live and recorded TV on a television or projector by connecting your iPhone with a compatible video out cable.



Live3G requires EyeTV 3.3 software (or newer) on your Mac.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,286 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I have and use the Elgato eyeTV 250 plus, my only complaint is the fact that they force you into a contract with TV Guide for scheduling and watching.
TV Guide cannot seem to get the channel lineup correct for my area V9R6N6 which makes scheduling recordings a real challenge if not impossible at times.
I've had many dealings with Elgato support over this issue, they have even given me subscription extentions so now I have an inaccurate program guide for a longer period.:mad:

PS: as of yet, I have not figured out any method for scheduling recording without using the built in TV guide channel lineup.
That's too bad to hear jamesB. FWIW, the program guide was accurate for my area, although for some reason, it skipped 569, which was Setanta Sports in HD. I was able to manually add that channel in the program guide, I believe through the cog wheel while I was viewing the program guide.

TV Guide is unfortunately the only service for use Canadian. For years, we actually had nothing. As many of you know, it's been a bit of a roller coaster for us Canadians. See here, and here.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,286 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
This review picked up by MacSurfer.

See the text in Monday Highlights as well as further down in the Reviews section of Reviews/How-To/Tutorials/Tips.

Congrats, Mr. Mayor.
Why thank you! :)

If you ever come across someone who as a question regarding the Elgato eyetv HD, feel free to post a link to this review. ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
First of all thanks for the nice demo of the product.

Can I use this device directly on my new 27" imac....which means I can use my iMac screen as a TV as well when I am not using it as a computer. Also does this eyetv box has its own hard drive or it is going to record videos on my Mac's HD.

What is the difference between this one and the eyetv hybrid.

Thanks, Pendu
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Thanks for the review. Questions:

1. Can you burn recordings to DVD?

2. How much HD space does an hour of HD TV take up?

It seems ideal if you're going to use your Mac as your TV as well, ie an iMac. But I'm unclear what the advantage of this over your cable or satellite provider's PVR would be if you need to have a dedicated Mac plugged in to your TV in order to watch TV on your TV. Seems an expensive option versus a cable or satellite provider's PVR.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,286 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
First of all thanks for the nice demo of the product.

Can I use this device directly on my new 27" imac....which means I can use my iMac screen as a TV as well when I am not using it as a computer. Also does this eyetv box has its own hard drive or it is going to record videos on my Mac's HD.

What is the difference between this one and the eyetv hybrid.

Thanks, Pendu
First of all, thank you for the nice comments, I'm really glad you enjoyed it!

The elgato eyetv HD can certainly be used to hook up directly to your 27" iMac. The HD video would look great. Keep in mind though, you still need to use a cable or satellite box / descrambler from a television provider like Bell, Shaw or Rogers.

Things brings up your question about the difference between the eyetv HD and the eyetv Hybrid. All previous EyeTV hardware devices (i.e. Eyetv Hybrid, eyetv 250 Plus etc..) have incorporated TV tuners in their designs. The eyetv HD is different in that it is a video capture device but does not contain a tuner. It depends on the satellite or cable box to handling the tuning function. This is what makes it possible to watch and record premium HD TV content with the eyetv HD. The set top box handles the descrambling of the encrypted content, and the eyetv HD hardware handles the recording.

The eyetv HD is also the first eyetv device to include integrated IR control functionality... this facilitates changing the channel on the cable or satellite system.

Finally, your question about the hard drive. The eyetv HD does not have a hard drive in it, all the recording goes to your Mac's hard drive.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,286 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for the review. Questions:

1. Can you burn recordings to DVD?

2. How much HD space does an hour of HD TV take up?

It seems ideal if you're going to use your Mac as your TV as well, ie an iMac. But I'm unclear what the advantage of this over your cable or satellite provider's PVR would be if you need to have a dedicated Mac plugged in to your TV in order to watch TV on your TV. Seems an expensive option versus a cable or satellite provider's PVR.
Hi Sugith, you're welcome, thanks for watching it! To answer your questions,

1. If you own Roxio’s Toast Titanium, you can select your shows in eyetv and click the Toast button to automatically open create a DVD project, ready to burn. If you prefer to use iDVD for burning your recordings, eyetv can export them in the appropriate format as well.

Eyetv's 3’s export handles formatting for different media and devices. Movies in widescreen 16:9 aspect ratio are detected automatically.

There are also built-in presets for post processing in applications such as DVD Studio Pro, iDVD, iMovie HD, and others. Eyetv sets the video formats, data rates, etc. for you.

2. I still have one, 14 minute HD recording, which is 850 GB. I have one 21 minute recording, which is 1.3 GB. According to my calculations, this should make a 1 hour HD recording be about 3.7GB's.

I have a 1 hour and 8 minutes Standard Def recording which is 1.79 GB.

The eyetv HD has an encoding chip in the hardware which creates SDTV or HDTV in the H.264 format, which is quite efficient at recording.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,286 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Just to elaborate more on the Elgato eyetv HD vs the Elgato eyetv Hybrid. Those were the two main TV input products available from Elgato. I say were, because Eglato has just released the HDHomeRun.

+ YouTube Video
ERROR: If you can see this, then YouTube is down or you don't have Flash installed.


Going back to the HD vs Hybrid, Elgato had these two devices:



Here are more detailed difference of the North American models:

Video Inputs

Both eyetv HD and eyetv Hybrid have Composite and S-Video inputs. They can record SDTV from those inputs. They can record from a VCR, camera, or other analog source.

Only eyetv Hybrid has a tuner input, for capturing signals from an antenna or coaxial cable line. Those signals can be SDTV or HDTV.

Only eyetv HD has a Component video input, that can be used to capture HDTV from a cable box, satellite receiver, or other sources.

Video Encoding

Eyetv Hybrid does not have an encoding chip in the hardware, to create SDTV video in MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 formats. Instead, it uses software encoding.

Eyetv Hybrid receives HD signals from digital antenna (ATSC) or unencrypted digital cable (Clear QAM) - those signals are pre-encoded by the broadcaster.

Eyetv HD has an encoding chip in the hardware, to create SDTV or HDTV in the H.264 format.

Files created by eyetv HD will need less hard drive space to store, since H.264 is more efficient than MPEG-1 or MPEG-2.

Only eyetv HD can record a full resolution file in SDTV or HDTV, and also record a separate copy of that video in iPhone resolution, all at the same time.

Video Playback

Eyetv Hybrid can play HDTV content on many types of Macs, from a Dual G5 on up. This is because MPEG-2 video is not that hard to play (decode).

Eyetv HD can play HDTV content only only the newest Intel Macs. This is because H.264 video is much more difficult to play (decode).

Playing Video Games

EyeTV Hybrid allows for video games to be played on your Mac with minimal lag/delay from live. It's suggested to turn off Enable Timeshift in the Devices section of the EyeTV Preferences when you play games, to minimize the delay.

EyeTV HD does not have a Game Mode - the hardware encoding chip is always on. This means video games played on your Mac will have a lag/delay from live. You can use a Splitter or Distribution Amplifier to play games on your TV, while you can record on your Mac.

Using a Cable Box or Satellite Receiver

Eyetv Hybrid can be attached to a cable box or satellite receiver, but you can't get HDTV video using that setup.

Eyetv HD can be attached to a cable box or satellite receiver, and you can get SDTV or HDTV video using that setup.

Eyetv Hybrid does not come with an Infrared Channel Changer (IR Blaster)

Eyetv HD comes with a built-in Infrared Channel Changer (IR Blaster) that will allow you to control a cable box or satellite receiver.

Which to buy:

EyeTV HD:
  • Great if you want to receive HDTV from a cable box or satellite receiver, using Component cables.
  • It comes with an Infrared Channel Changer (IR Blaster) to help control your cable box or satellite receiver.
  • It cannot receive TV directly from an antenna or cable line.
  • It works best with the latest Intel Macs (Intel Core® 2 Duo 2.26 GHz or higher CPU).

ehMac Canadian Price Tracker for Elgato eyetv HD.

EyeTV Hybrid:

  • Great if you want to receive TV directly from an antenna or cable line.
  • It can receive some HDTV channels in the ATSC or Clear QAM formats.
  • It cannot get HDTV from a cable box or satellite receiver.
  • It can work with dual processor or dual core Macs from the past few years.

ehMac Price Tracker for Elgato eyetv Hybrid.
 

·
CIO of CYA
Joined
·
3,857 Posts
Yes you can make DVDs. EyeTV has been integrated with Roxio’s Toast 10 Titanium disc recording software to make DVDs.

Things your PVR can't do that this product can ...

-Edit unwanted content and create clips from your recordings
-Export recordings to iTunes automatically for playback on an iPhone or iPad
- take a picture of what’s on screen
-Share recordings with other Macs on your network
-Stream live or recorded TV to an iPhone with the optional EyeTV app
 
1 - 20 of 40 Posts
Top