The product autoscans for stations to make tuning very easy, as precise tuning can be a nightmare using a slider that seems to slip to either side of perfect. Once a TV or radio signal hits the PC, Studio PCTV allows viewing from 160 x 120 pixels up to full screen, with the ability to stretch the image and lock it on top while you work.
Sound is crystal clear but video suffered from poor reception and frame drop-outs in our tests (partially due to an internal antenna). The FM radio feature was excellent, with radio coming through clearly even without connecting an antenna as recommended. Video-in worked somewhat better than the TV function, but frame dropping was still an issue. Viewing in full screen mode is essentially watching a series of stills unless your PC is exceptionally fast and has an excellent video card.
Studio PCTV is also a fully featured video-editing studio, providing a comprehensive set of effects that can be mixed and matched to create customised movies in MPEG, AVI or RealVideo format. The product can record input from TV, video, camcorder, FM radio or any of the video formats above, and these can then be sliced and diced to produce a new movie, stringing together stills, recorded sections or complete clips in any order. The variety of effects includes over 100 transitions, pre-recorded riffs or the ability to incorporate any audio track from a CD, voiceovers and overlays.
Overall, Studio PCTV USB is an excellent package, whether you simply want to catch some late-night TV while working or want to create a home video.
Studio PCTV USB
Distributor: Lako Vision
Phone: (03) 9852 7444
URL: www.lakovision.com.au; www.pinnaclesys.com