Pinnacle Systems, a division of Avid, has brought many great products to market. Here is another piece that will surely peak your interest. The Pinnacle PCTV High Definition USB stick. This USB powered gadget makes the recording of HD TV not only easy, but inexpensive too.
There are no subscription fees required, just internet access for programming schedules and a PC with some decent HHD space. Here’s the deal: The USB PCTV HD Pro Stick has a coaxial cable connection on one end and a USB connector at the other. If you have HDTV already you can plug directly into a PC and make that your DVR or extend storage space from your current Tivo or other DVR unit.
OR you can use the supplied HD antenna to capture ATSC reception which is a new, public and free digital broadcasting system. ATSC is available in most major metropolitan areas in the US and the Pinnacle system will pick up the signal (provided it’s clear) if not, then you may need an amplified rooftop antenna. (Go to Antennaweb.org for more info)
The software comes with your typical DVR capabilities such as record scheduling, pause, playback, rewind, replay and you can even turn your Microsoft Windows XP Media Center computer into a full featured analog or digital TV set.
Pinnacle includes some additional features like recording directly to device such as – direct to DVDR, iPod, PSP or DivX. You can also capture video from any device like VCRs, camcorders, DVD players etc. For only $129 this is definitely a serious alternative to a canned solution from DirectTV or DishNetwork.