d18c7db at hotmail
Feb 16, 2003, 7:41 PM
Post #1 of 5
OK just a quick update, as I've said I bought the PVR250 off a US online
merchant while I live in a PAL country. I quickly set it up in Win XP
for a test.
The first issue was, as expected the tuner, so off it came, replaced it
with a Temic part which is really just a clone of a Philips FI1216.
This gave me a chance to pop the underside metal shield (the one
touching the PCB) off the original tuner.
As suspected there are two SMD chips on that, a TSA5523M (1.4Ghz I2C
controlled synthesizer) and a TDA5736 (hyperband mixer oscillator) that
go hand in hand with the TDA9800 (PLL demodulator/detector) on the front
side of the tuner PCB. Long story short, the replacement tuner is
identical to the original one except it's PAL. It even has the same I2C
address so the software tunes and changes channels fine, except the
autoscan is broken, it does not auto detect any channels so I have to
manually set them up. This may well be related to the b/w (black and
white) issue below.
Next problem I had was that I wasn't getting a picture, quick research
on the Hauppauge FAQ resolved that, apparently I had to uninstall the
PowerDVD software off my machine as it's software MPEG decoders clashed
I've owned Hauppauge cards before and I thought the software that comes
with them is utter crap. Sadly the situation does not seem to have
improved. The interface is Real Ugly (TM), the installers are
reminescent of those in the Win95 days, some do not support long
filenames, etc.... Compatibility issues (see above) abound.
Sure enough now I had a picture but allas it's b/w not color and it's
missing about 100 scan lines :) since it's passing through the encoder
in NTSC mode. For the life of me I couldn't find any settings in the
software that rectified the situation. The only option I can see is in
the tuner/channel setup where you can tell it it's PAL but that has no
On the windows coaster that comes with the card there's a little utility
that scans the system and displays the detected card's stats. It
apparently thinks it's a NTSC type :) funny that so I think that setting
is stored in the EEPROM chip on board the card (that 24LC02). That
utility seems to also display a hex dump of the EEPROM contents, so if
anyone on the list has a PAL card I'd appreciate a comparison.
Finally now that the card (more or less) worked I rebooted under RH 8.0
and downloaded the driver code off CVS thinking I'd give that a spin but
typing make spat out a good 2 or 3 screenfulls of error messages and I'd
really run out of time by then so I had to drop it. Might have some time
tonite to look at that.
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