Being tested today is the Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650.... I love when tech companies name stuff - it’s so much fun. Just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it? The Hauppauge WinTV-DCR-2650. Of course, from the name you know exactly what it is, right? A device that allows you to connect your cable to your Windows 7 PC with dual CableCARDs, basically turning your computer into a DVR. But, you knew that since it is so obvious from the name. And just to either clarify things, or make them more confusing, I’m not sure which - the DCR in the name stands for Digital Cable Ready - not Digital Cable Recorder or something like that - even though it looks very similar to DVR - DCR is not directly related.
I’m going to refer to the device as the WinTV from here on out, if you don’t mind. :)
The WinTV is a small black box, about the size of a desktop external hard drive, and plugs into your computer via USB. It has two slots for CableCARDs - which means you can record two shows at once, or watch one show while recording another. You have to get the CableCARDs from your cable provider, and - of course - you have to have a cable TV subscription. Power Cord slot, coax cable nub, USB cord slot, and the dual CableCARD slots are the connections on the back.
What you would need:
- A Windows 7 PC
- A Cable subscription
- A CableCARD or two
- The WinTV
- Enough Hard Drive space on your PC to save your recordings
Some may ask - why get this when most cable companies give you a DVR either free or for a small monthly fee - which may or may not be more than the rental cost of the CableCARD. Well, there are advantages.