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-   -   DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling? (http://www.travelbanter.com/showthread.php?t=148077)

Frank Slootweg December 31st, 2008 02:51 PM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 
[Crossposted to aus.tv.digital and rec.travel.australia+nz.]

On our next trip to/in Australia, mainly in rural/outback areas, we
will be taking a mini-laptop with us.

I was wondering if it would be worth our while to buy a small (USB)
DVB-T (Digital Video Broadcasting Terrestial) tuner, probably a combined
DVB-T/Analog one, probably a Pinnacle PCTV Hybrid Pro Stick [1].

Would such a stick/tuner be useful in rural/outback areas, i.e.
small(er) towns?

Would there likely be DVB-T, or analog TV, or both?

Would the supplied small rod antenna be sufficient?

Any other comments or/and suggestions?

Thanks in advance for any and all response.

[1]
http://www.pinnaclesys.com/PublicSite/uk/Products/Consumer+Products/PCTV+Tuners/PCTV+Analog_Digital+PVR/PCTV+Hybrid+Pro+Stick+%28320e%29.htm

John H January 1st, 2009 08:17 AM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 
Hi Frank,
Well,
Firstly re the analogue side of that device....is it compatibale with
Australian Pal system, or for US NTSC system.
(I cant determine where you are located), thus may not or will not work in
Aust if not PAL analogue tuner.
From their website I cant work out if the device is multi system
accessible/selectable or not. ie PAL, & NTSC etc

re Rural areas.
Most have reasonable analogue, but not all, without a High antenna system as
transmitters can be up to 100Kms from where you are.
Some have digital access from transmitters that also are a long way from
where you are.

eg I have a son on a farm 350Kms Sth East from Adelaide in Sth Aust. and
they get local transmitter of analogue about 80kms away with a 40ft mast
plus antenna boosters otherwise only get local translator abou 52Kms away.

Their Digital channels are also coming from the 100Km distant transmitters,
but fade in and out in day and work reasonably at night with the 40ft mast
and antenna boosters.
So what level of signal you would get with a USB or similar receiver into a
PC remains to be seen and will greatly depend upon where you are in the
regional area(s).

Re outback.
Most outback places have just about zero signal for ordinary terrestial TV
unless thay have a satellite dish and get signal from satellite, which has
the free to air stations re-transmitted on them.

So the whole situation could/would be very hit & miss.

Around major cities there should be no problem, but that isnt where you
appear to be going.

John H



"Frank Slootweg" wrote in message
.home.nl...
[Crossposted to aus.tv.digital and rec.travel.australia+nz.]

On our next trip to/in Australia, mainly in rural/outback areas, we
will be taking a mini-laptop with us.

I was wondering if it would be worth our while to buy a small (USB)
DVB-T (Digital Video Broadcasting Terrestial) tuner, probably a combined
DVB-T/Analog one, probably a Pinnacle PCTV Hybrid Pro Stick [1].

Would such a stick/tuner be useful in rural/outback areas, i.e.
small(er) towns?

Would there likely be DVB-T, or analog TV, or both?

Would the supplied small rod antenna be sufficient?

Any other comments or/and suggestions?

Thanks in advance for any and all response.

[1]
http://www.pinnaclesys.com/PublicSite/uk/Products/Consumer+Products/PCTV+Tuners/PCTV+Analog_Digital+PVR/PCTV+Hybrid+Pro+Stick+%28320e%29.htm




Frank Slootweg January 1st, 2009 12:38 PM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 
John H wrote:
Hi Frank,
Well,
Firstly re the analogue side of that device....is it compatibale with
Australian Pal system, or for US NTSC system.
(I cant determine where you are located), thus may not or will not work in
Aust if not PAL analogue tuner.
From their website I cant work out if the device is multi system
accessible/selectable or not. ie PAL, & NTSC etc


Thanks for that! I'm from The Netherlands and we also have PAL (like
the rest of the *civilized* world! :-)). The website was Pinnacle's
general UK site, but I will buy the device in The Netherlands, so it
should be OK, but I will check the outside of the package and if it's
unclear I will let them note that I can return it if it's non-PAL.

re Rural areas.
Most have reasonable analogue, but not all, without a High antenna system as
transmitters can be up to 100Kms from where you are.
Some have digital access from transmitters that also are a long way from
where you are.

eg I have a son on a farm 350Kms Sth East from Adelaide in Sth Aust. and
they get local transmitter of analogue about 80kms away with a 40ft mast
plus antenna boosters otherwise only get local translator abou 52Kms away.

Their Digital channels are also coming from the 100Km distant transmitters,
but fade in and out in day and work reasonably at night with the 40ft mast
and antenna boosters.
So what level of signal you would get with a USB or similar receiver into a
PC remains to be seen and will greatly depend upon where you are in the
regional area(s).

Re outback.
Most outback places have just about zero signal for ordinary terrestial TV
unless thay have a satellite dish and get signal from satellite, which has
the free to air stations re-transmitted on them.

So the whole situation could/would be very hit & miss.

Around major cities there should be no problem, but that isnt where you
appear to be going.


My wife isn't going to like it one bit, me putting a 40 feet mast and
electronics in our bags, but heh, *you* said it, not me! :-)

But all kidding aside: Thanks very much for your detailed information!

I'll see how we go. After all, it's only a small device to take along,
not very expensive and it might be fun to play with on these cold days
(it's minus 10 degrees C here)!

Thanks again.

Frank Slootweg January 4th, 2009 01:44 PM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 
[rec.travel.australia+nz re-added.]

John H wrote:
You actually watch "Neighbours" ....you poor man!!


You are free to blame my daughter and wife! :-) But on the bright
side, Neighbours and The Flying Doctors are in a way (long story)
'responsible' for our once-in-a-life time trip to Oz in 1995. Since, we
had six more trips, so I'm not complaining! :-)

John H

"Frank Slootweg" wrote in message
.home.nl...
Marts wrote:
Frank Slootweg wrote...

I'll let you know either way, i.e. if I buy it or not, and if I buy
it, whether it works in my home country (The Netherlands), and whether
it works in Oz.

You may be better off getting one here. We apparently have different
DVB-T
standards to most other countries, so it may not work.

They're cheap as chips anyway.


Thanks. I'll look into that.

You travelling by car, caravan towing, motorhome, what? Might be
easier to simply buy a small flat panel television with built in
tuner, either digital or analog and get a portable antenna that mounts
to the side of the van/motorhome, camper trailer setup.


We will be travelling in a rental 4WD campervan. Small, cheap,
light-weight stuff is no problem, because we can either take that back
home or toss it after the trip. But 'expensive'+big_or/and_heavy stuff
is not worth our while to buy. But a portable antenna is a good idea. I
remember these windows-mounted ones from the old days. Perhaps I can
find one which fits on the door-window glass and on the camper-part
door.

Certainly, it'd be easier on the eyes rather than trying to share a
small 9-10" screen with someone else.


*Which* "someone else"? It's *my* computer, ain't it? And she'll be
way too busy cooking and bringing me beer, to have time to watch TV! :-)

But seriously: *If* we have reception, we might watch the weather
forecast and perhaps the news (and Neighbours of course :-)). After all,
if you have outback sky and TV, the former wins hands down!

Thanks again!


Di January 4th, 2009 09:42 PM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 
We did a trip through the Northern Territory late last year via caravan,
using a tv with a standard definition tuner. Digital tv was only available
in Darwin, analogue everywhere else within towns. The station that has the
most coverage through the Territory, and in fact throughout Australia, is
called Imparja. They used to broadcast Neighbours because of their
affliliation with Channel 10 from Queensland. However that association was
discontinued last year (2008) and I don't know whether they even get
Neighbours now. I never saw the show the whole 2 months we were away. Mind
you, my husband, King of the Remotes, would have clicked past it at high
speed if he had seen it g
I tried checking the IMparja guide for you but there is no information on
the program, whether this is due to it no longer being carried by them, or
due to the fact all the channels haven't started the 2009 seasons of such
shows tand don't, till late January or early February.


Frank Slootweg wrote:
John H wrote:
Hi Frank,
Well,
Firstly re the analogue side of that device....is it compatibale with
Australian Pal system, or for US NTSC system.
(I cant determine where you are located), thus may not or will not
work in Aust if not PAL analogue tuner.
From their website I cant work out if the device is multi system
accessible/selectable or not. ie PAL, & NTSC etc


Thanks for that! I'm from The Netherlands and we also have PAL (like
the rest of the *civilized* world! :-)). The website was Pinnacle's
general UK site, but I will buy the device in The Netherlands, so it
should be OK, but I will check the outside of the package and if it's
unclear I will let them note that I can return it if it's non-PAL.

re Rural areas.
Most have reasonable analogue, but not all, without a High antenna
system as transmitters can be up to 100Kms from where you are.
Some have digital access from transmitters that also are a long way
from where you are.

eg I have a son on a farm 350Kms Sth East from Adelaide in Sth Aust.
and they get local transmitter of analogue about 80kms away with a
40ft mast plus antenna boosters otherwise only get local translator
abou 52Kms away.

Their Digital channels are also coming from the 100Km distant
transmitters, but fade in and out in day and work reasonably at
night with the 40ft mast and antenna boosters.
So what level of signal you would get with a USB or similar receiver
into a PC remains to be seen and will greatly depend upon where you
are in the regional area(s).

Re outback.
Most outback places have just about zero signal for ordinary
terrestial TV unless thay have a satellite dish and get signal from
satellite, which has the free to air stations re-transmitted on them.

So the whole situation could/would be very hit & miss.

Around major cities there should be no problem, but that isnt where
you appear to be going.


My wife isn't going to like it one bit, me putting a 40 feet mast and
electronics in our bags, but heh, *you* said it, not me! :-)

But all kidding aside: Thanks very much for your detailed
information!

I'll see how we go. After all, it's only a small device to take
along, not very expensive and it might be fun to play with on these
cold days (it's minus 10 degrees C here)!

Thanks again.



Di January 4th, 2009 09:44 PM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 
Correction - Imparja has the most coverage throughout rural and outback
Australia, not in the cities.

Di wrote:
We did a trip through the Northern Territory late last year via
caravan, using a tv with a standard definition tuner. Digital tv was
only available in Darwin, analogue everywhere else within towns. The
station that has the most coverage through the Territory, and in fact
throughout Australia, is called Imparja. They used to broadcast
Neighbours because of their affliliation with Channel 10 from
Queensland. However that association was discontinued last year
(2008) and I don't know whether they even get Neighbours now. I
never saw the show the whole 2 months we were away. Mind you, my
husband, King of the Remotes, would have clicked past it at high
speed if he had seen it g I tried checking the IMparja guide for you
but there is no
information on the program, whether this is due to it no longer being
carried by them, or due to the fact all the channels haven't started
the 2009 seasons of such shows tand don't, till late January or early
February.

Frank Slootweg wrote:
John H wrote:
Hi Frank,
Well,
Firstly re the analogue side of that device....is it compatibale
with Australian Pal system, or for US NTSC system.
(I cant determine where you are located), thus may not or will not
work in Aust if not PAL analogue tuner.
From their website I cant work out if the device is multi system
accessible/selectable or not. ie PAL, & NTSC etc


Thanks for that! I'm from The Netherlands and we also have PAL (like
the rest of the *civilized* world! :-)). The website was Pinnacle's
general UK site, but I will buy the device in The Netherlands, so it
should be OK, but I will check the outside of the package and if it's
unclear I will let them note that I can return it if it's non-PAL.

re Rural areas.
Most have reasonable analogue, but not all, without a High antenna
system as transmitters can be up to 100Kms from where you are.
Some have digital access from transmitters that also are a long way
from where you are.

eg I have a son on a farm 350Kms Sth East from Adelaide in Sth Aust.
and they get local transmitter of analogue about 80kms away with a
40ft mast plus antenna boosters otherwise only get local translator
abou 52Kms away.

Their Digital channels are also coming from the 100Km distant
transmitters, but fade in and out in day and work reasonably at
night with the 40ft mast and antenna boosters.
So what level of signal you would get with a USB or similar receiver
into a PC remains to be seen and will greatly depend upon where you
are in the regional area(s).

Re outback.
Most outback places have just about zero signal for ordinary
terrestial TV unless thay have a satellite dish and get signal from
satellite, which has the free to air stations re-transmitted on
them. So the whole situation could/would be very hit & miss.

Around major cities there should be no problem, but that isnt where
you appear to be going.


My wife isn't going to like it one bit, me putting a 40 feet mast
and electronics in our bags, but heh, *you* said it, not me! :-)

But all kidding aside: Thanks very much for your detailed
information!

I'll see how we go. After all, it's only a small device to take
along, not very expensive and it might be fun to play with on these
cold days (it's minus 10 degrees C here)!

Thanks again.



Gerrit January 5th, 2009 03:00 AM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 

"Frank Slootweg" wrote in message
b.home.nl...

Frank

It seems to me that the best solution for guaranteed success is to buy a
satellite dish when you get here.
May be a bit more expensive which would tend to be a minus (we are Dutch
after all) but anything else is just too iffy. That is if you really want
the distraction of TV in the bush.

Gerrit - Perth where we have had over 30 every day since 28 December and
forecast to remain there to at least this Friday



Frank Slootweg January 5th, 2009 05:05 PM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 
Gerrit wrote:

"Frank Slootweg" wrote in message
b.home.nl...

Frank

It seems to me that the best solution for guaranteed success is to buy a
satellite dish when you get here.
May be a bit more expensive which would tend to be a minus (we are Dutch
after all) but anything else is just too iffy. That is if you really want
the distraction of TV in the bush.


Gerrit,

So what you're basically saying is that I take *either* the wife *or*
a sat dish to Oz!? :-)

Gerrit - Perth where we have had over 30 every day since 28 December and
forecast to remain there to at least this Friday


Yeah, rub it it, will you!? :-) All we have here is bloody cold and
bloody colds!

Gerrit January 6th, 2009 09:09 AM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 

"Frank Slootweg" wrote in message
b.home.nl...
Gerrit wrote:

"Frank Slootweg" wrote in message
b.home.nl...

Frank

It seems to me that the best solution for guaranteed success is to buy a
satellite dish when you get here.
May be a bit more expensive which would tend to be a minus (we are Dutch
after all) but anything else is just too iffy. That is if you really want
the distraction of TV in the bush.


Gerrit,

So what you're basically saying is that I take *either* the wife *or*
a sat dish to Oz!? :-)


I was actually thinking of a quiet wine or beer drinking in the solitude of
the outback next to a campfire. Besides if I were ever to meet your wife I
wouldn't want to have to wear a bulletproof vest. :-)

Gerrit - Perth where we have had over 30 every day since 28 December and
forecast to remain there to at least this Friday


Yeah, rub it it, will you!? :-) All we have here is bloody cold and
bloody colds!


Forecasts for Perth:
Wednesday Fine, hot Min 19 Max 35
Thursday Fine, hot. Min 21 Max 37
Friday Fine, hot. Min 21 Max 37
Saturday Fine. Min 19 Max 34
Sunday Fine, hot. Min 20 Max 37
Monday Fine. Min 19 Max 28
Tuesday Fine. Min 16 Max 30
I have read about the cold out your way and am wondering whether there may
finally be an elfstedentocht?Would love to see that.



Frank Slootweg January 12th, 2009 09:09 PM

DVB-T + Analog TV on laptop while travelling?
 
[rec.travel.australia+nz re-added, so the whole audience is up to date.]

On January 1, I wrote:
Derek [email protected] wrote:

[...]
I'd be interested to hear how you get on.


I'll let you know either way, i.e. if I buy it or not, and if I buy
it, whether it works in my home country (The Netherlands), and whether
it works in Oz.


A little feedback:

I bought the Pinnacle PCTV Hybrid Pro [USB] Stick which I mentioned
before.

Results are as follows (at home in The Netherlands):

- DVB-T reception with the supplied small rod antenna only works on the
second floor (ground/first/second) of our house (which, compared to
Oz, is in a somewhat built-up area). It then works very well. Clear
full screen picture, without any visible/audible interruptions.
On the ground floor it doesn't work at all, i.e. the scanning software
doesn't find any stations and the already found ones have a 0% signal
strength.

- Analog (TV): We have no analog transmitters anymore, so I could only
try it on our cable-TV connection, which - no surprise - worked well,
taking in account that it's analog, i.e. some noise, less sharp, etc..

- FM radio: Works on the ground floor as well/poor as a normal portable
radio with such a small antenna would work. I.e. performance is as to
be expected.

The software also has Internet radio, but I assume that's a pure
software component, so hardly relevant, especially for my use, which is
*TV* reception when there's *no* Internet connection.

That's about it. Please feel free to ask any questions you might have.

FYI, the report from Oz is - hopefully :-) - at least six months away,
so don't hold your breath for *that* one.

[Full posting for reference:]

On January 1, I wrote:
Derek [email protected] wrote:
"Frank Slootweg" wrote in message
.home.nl...

[Crossposted to aus.tv.digital and rec.travel.australia+nz.]

On our next trip to/in Australia, mainly in rural/outback areas, we
will be taking a mini-laptop with us.

I was wondering if it would be worth our while to buy a small (USB)
DVB-T (Digital Video Broadcasting Terrestial) tuner, probably a combined
DVB-T/Analog one, probably a Pinnacle PCTV Hybrid Pro Stick [1].

Would such a stick/tuner be useful in rural/outback areas, i.e.
small(er) towns?

Would there likely be DVB-T, or analog TV, or both?


This Gov data base shows what is where.
http://www.acma.gov.au/WEB/STANDARD/pc=PC_9150


Thanks for that! That will come in handy, also for general purpose,
i.e. in-vehicle radio reception, etc..

Many country areas (like my inlaws place) are analog only.


Would the supplied small rod antenna be sufficient?


Highly unlikely


Yeah, I was afraid of that.

Any other comments or/and suggestions?


Are you sure your mini laptop will even support a USB tuner?


It's an Acer Aspire One with Windows XP. (I first had a Linux version,
but Linux support for this - and other kind - of consumer stuff, is
ranging from non-existant to very hard to set up.)

Pure software support is not a problem, but processor speed may be a
problem. The specification of the USB-tuner say "Pentium 4 2.0 GHz or
Pentium M 1.3 GHz". I have a 1.6 Ghz Atom, so that might be a problem.
OTOH, the system comes with InterVideo WinDVD (a little silly, since,
because of its size, the machine doesn't have a DVD/CD drive), so if it
can handle DVD video, it hopefully can also handle TV video.

I'd be interested to hear how you get on.


I'll let you know either way, i.e. if I buy it or not, and if I buy
it, whether it works in my home country (The Netherlands), and whether
it works in Oz.



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