IoT
News
News
7/26/2007
04:13 PM
50%
50%

Review: 3 TV Tuners For The Mac

If you've got a Mac, want to make it an entertainment center, and don't want to invest in an Apple TV, here are some TV tuners to check out.

TVMax+
Physically, the TVMax+ is a near perfect match for the Mac Mini. In fact, it’s designed to look like a Mini clone and shares the same 6.5-inch square footprint. Since the TVMax+ is 1.5 inches in height, when it's set on top of the Mini, the pair creates a stacked "tower" of just 3.5 inches in total.



TVMax+

The TVMax+'s rear panel has the usual audio and composite video AV inputs plus an SVHS video-in as well. There is no front or side panel connectivity, which (unlike its two competitors) makes the installation surprisingly painless -- and, if you’re using all of its connectivity, very clean-looking.

There were, of course, the rote matters of connecting the USB and cable TV cables. Miglia's TV software installed without a problem, and once the cable and USB connections were made, everything worked as advertised.

That’s not to say that things were perfect. The TVMax+ had a slight ripple in the picture displayed from some channels -- not something I hadn’t seen before with other PC-based TV tuners, but still just a bit distracting at times. This is compared to the image coming directly from the TV's tuner, where there wasn’t a ripple in sight. Color, on the other hand, was spot-on, and TitanTV’s EPG worked flawlessly as well.

The TVMax+ comes with its own remote control. While you can use the Mac Mini’s mouse to click on the various features available through the EyeTV’s on-screen remote control icon, or the Mini’s keyboard for channel number entry, Miglia’s handheld remote goes a long way to eliminate the impression that you’re using a computer at all.

The only true "ouch factor" the MaxTV presented is the price. At a range of $184 to $230, Miglia’s TVMax+ is the most expensive of the three products in this roundup. In my opinion, the remote control and its styling would be the key factor in buying the TVMax+ rather than performance, where it closely parallels the other two tuners. If a consistent look is your primary goal, then this is the TV tuner for you.

Previous
2 of 4
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
How to Knock Down Barriers to Effective Risk Management
Risk management today is a hodgepodge of systems, siloed approaches, and poor data collection practices. That isn't how it should be.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.