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How To Get TV On Your PC With HDHomeRun TV Tuner

Want to watch TV on your PC? Mike Rothman shows you how to add the HDHomeRun TV tuner.

BYTE -- You can easily add TV to your PC. Here's how to use Silicon Dust's HDHomeRun Dual Tuner to do exactly that.

This unit supports up to 1080i HDTV as fed by a local TV antenna or incoming cable line. It'll receive unencrypted digital cable (ClearQAM) channels direct from your cable provider, too.

Here's the HDHomeRun Dual Tuner model I'm using.

First install the tuner.

This external box requires an Ethernet connection. Plug that in. The box also provides two tuners that swap dynamically to any Windows computer on the network requesting a tuner. Check out how the two tuners, below, are set up. Connect it all together.

Either pop in the install disc or download the HDHomeRun Setup program online. Select HDHomeRun Setup to see the window below, where you browse, and select a location on your computer for the HDHomeRun software. Click Next.

My install will be to a PC running Windows 7, but the unit also supports Mac OS X and many Linux distributions. On Windows, you'll next get the HDHomeRun Setup Wizard. Check the box next to Detect and configure HDHomeRun devices. Click Finish.

Note: Return to this configuration later by selecting Start >> All Programs >>HDHomeRun >>HDHomeRun Config (GUI).

Set your current location and start the configuration process.

Hit the Application tab. Select the Main Application tab to access the tuners and a quick-access preview application, which comes with the unit.

Next, on the Tuners tab, indicate if you will configure and use one or both of the dual tuners, shown on the back of the unit as Tuner 0 and Tuner 1.

Under the Tuners tab, set the Source Type drop-down to Disabled, Antenna, or Digital Cable. Notice that a fourth tab for digital cable now shows onscreen.

Select the Digital Cable tab and click Scan to initiate the scan of your available digital cable channels and programs.

The completed scan results in a display of the Channel Editor, allowing you to view, enable, or disable. This completes the configuration of Tuner 0. Don't forget to return to the Tuner drop-down box to select Tuner 1 in order to configure the second tuner.

That's it! Just select Start >> HDHomeRun >> HDHomeRun QuickTV to open this window, which will provide your channel choices. Click on any channel to bring up what is on.

Enjoy the show!

Based in San Francisco Mike Rothman is a senior contributor at BYTE. Follow him @thatworksforme or email him at

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