PCI tuner card vs HDHomerun Extend vs Tablo (1 Viewer)

road hazard

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November 14, 2015
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Hi there, I've been spending a LOT of time the past few days reading up on how to setup hardware to allow watching live TV on various devices and had a few questions. My requirements are as follows:

.... I just want to be able to stream some OTA HD channels to the following devices; Roku 3, iPad, Android phone, a few boxes running Kodi and a Shield TV that Santa got me :) . I do NOT have the need to record anything from these OTA channels..... just stream them.

My HTPC is a mid-tower running Win 7, 8 gigs of RAM and lots of drive space. CPU is an i5 4690K. Right now, it's running Plex and serving up everything (ripped movies, TV shows, MP3s, home movies, digital pictures).

I looked at the Tablo but seeing all their problems and reports that it takes 10 seconds to flip from 1 channel to the other makes me not want to buy that device. (I want semi-fast channel changes.....10 seconds is too long.)

I looked at the HDHomerun Extend. Like the Tablo, it encodes to h.264 so serving to iPads, Roku won't be a problem but nobody has them in stock right now but I understand a batch is on the way so here in a few weeks I might be able to grab one. I hear that channel changes on them are quicker then what Tablo can do. I've seen lots of videos where people were using NextPVR/MythTV in conjunction with these boxes with good results. They don't seem to be plagued with the same problems as Tablo's have with the Roku.

And lastly..... I was thinking about just buying a Hauppauge capture card (2250?) and letting my HTPC with it's i5 CPU transcode to h.264 (since the 2250 captures in MPEG2) and serve to everything and using MediaPortal as the bridge.

I've shot down using MythTV and NextPVR and think MediaPortal is the tool I want to use........ I'm just up in the air as far as deciding between the HDHomerun Extend or getting a PCI tuner card like the 2250 and marrying up one of those with MP.

Which do you all think will be the best combo? (Tuner+MediaPortal or HDHomerun Extend+MmediaPortal?) Just want fast channel changes and the ability to stream. Recording isn't important.

Thanks, look forward to seeing your responses!
 

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