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Hauppauge HD PVR

Model 1212

By Terry Currier

I hate Thursdays. Even with two VCRs there are too many good shows to watch, or record everything I would like. I just brought a HDTV, and with the cable cost being so high we decided to forgo the extra $10 a month for the HD recorder and just use the HD box.

Then I saw the Hauppauge HD PVR at CES. It connects directly out of the cable HD box so it can record any of the TV shows in high quality H.264. The cool thing is it will even record the premium channels. It also works with satellite set top boxes as well.

The HD PVR will record real-time H.264 at resolutions up to 1080i. It connects by using component video (YCrCb) from cable TV or satellite set top boxes. I’ve never used  component video (YCrCb) cables before. It took a couple of tries, but I got it working perfectly. You can also hook up the video through S-Video ports they have. If the component video cables are your only means of getting the signal to the TV there are Audio / Video component pass through jacks to allow HD recording and viewing at the same time. From the PVR box you connect to the computer with a USB cable.

You connect the Hauppauge HD PVR to your computer to record the shows. Since my desktop computer is in the other side of the house I setup mylaptop to record to. At first I thought of it as a pain to use the laptop, the reality was it was convenient since I could take the laptop (and recording) anywhere to watch it. Installing the software was not a problem. It comes with:

After that you setup the built-in IR blaster to automatically change TV channels for scheduled recordings.

Even though it is burned onto a DVD it won’t play on a DVD player. The Arcsoft program creates a BDMV disk with .m2ts files for Blu-ray or Sony PS3 players. Two hours of HD recordings, recorded at 5Mbits/sec, can be burnt onto a standard 4.7 GB DVD-R or DVD-RW disk for playback on a Blu-ray DVD player. The Arcsoft MediaConverter can be used to convert the recordings onto other formats:

You can not use the PVR to record one station while you watch another. It records whatever the set top box presents to the TV. In fact when I brought up the TV guide to see what was coming on the premium channels I notice the guide was in the recording. If you have a HD recorder already can youuse it to record other channels? No, I took it over to my daughters house to try that, and it only records the channel the set top box is set at. Unless the box has two tuners, which some do. But, I was able to record HBO which I don’t have.  

The Arcsoft “TotalMediaExtreme” for editing the recordings (such as taking out commercials) is pretty limited. Other video editing programs will also take in the recordings. I took the .TS file into CyberLink’s PowerDirector, edited and burned it to a DVD which could be read by and DVD player. CyberLink’s PowerDVD will also play the recordings.


Arcsoft HD Player


For creating disc


Editing video


Media Converter


Opening Screen


Arcsoft Recording


Schedule recording


Show scheduled


Note: the video input format determines the recorded format. For example, 1080i input records at 1080i, 720P records at 720P, etc.. Any other format conversions needs to be done with the MediaConvert program (supplied).

System Requirements

Included with the HD PVR

Computer used for review

Hauppauge Computer Works -

Best price I found was $210 at

Contact Information

Postal address
P.O. Box 9804, Newport Beach, CA. 92658
Electronic mail
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