Personal Video Station 3

Dedicated digital video recorder (DVR) boxes that let you auto­matically record, watch and pause live TV programs without using VHS tapes are all the rage in the US, though they have yet to arrive in Australia. It is possible, however, to achieve something similar using SnapStream Personal Video Station 3 and your PC.

At $US50 (download) or $US70 (boxed CD), PVS 3 enables you to watch and record shows on your computer (See here for a screenshot). You’ll need a PCI TV-capture card if your system lacks a graphics card with a TV input.

The advantage of PC-based systems like PVS 3 is that they allow you to watch the programs you have recorded on another PC over your home network, the Internet or a Pocket PC-based PDA. You can also put the programs on DVD if you have a DVD burner.

The PVS 3 system does have its dis­advantages: watching TV on a computer screen can be unpleasant, and connecting a TV to the video-out port of your graphics card requires that the PC be near your TV.

PVS 3’s image quality depends on your PC’s speed, but on my test system (a 1.2GHz Athlon PC with a GeForce4-based graphics card and 512MB of RAM), it was certainly acceptable. Never­theless, even at the higher quality settings, the same program looked worse on the pre-production PVS 3 software than it did on my trials of a TiVo DVR (not yet available in Australia).

For Australian users, the company makes available a .dat file of tuning frequencies for local television broadcasters; you’ll find it at www.snapstream.com/support/international/australia. SnapStream also offer the cut back PVS Lite 2.0 available for free download from its Web site.

In brief: SnapStream Personal Video Station 3
(Preproduction software, not rated)
Cheaper but less convenient than a digital video recorder box.
Price: $US50 (download), $US70 (boxed CD)
URL: www.snapstream.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Richard Baguley

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?