Friday, 12 May 2017

PCI TV Tuner Gone Kaput

"What am I going to do with the analog TV Tuner that I have in my computer?"

That was the thought that I had some years ago when the Malaysian government announced that the free-to-air local terrestrial television broadcast will be going digital in the future. And the future is now set at 2018, tentatively.

Well, I do not have to worry about this question anymore. My analog KWorld TV tuner has gone kaput. Yes, I have had hung PCs and a couple of half captured TV programs over the last couple of days. I never thought it was a hardware problem initially. I kept thinking it was memory constraint instead as I had just installed Avast and have been using Gimp quite a lot lately. Guess I assumed wrong.

Blank Screen In Virtualdub Because Of A Faulty TV Tuner

Now what I get when I start my TV recordings or viewing in VirtualDub is just a blank screen. Intermittently though, I do get some video and audio if I am lucky, but it only lasts a few minutes. Likewise when I tune in to my local FM radio stations.

But a bit of an oddity that I just found out a moment ago. Gnome Radio on Ubuntu Linux could still pick up the local FM radio signal (the STEREO/MONO indicator changes when I scan the airwaves) but there is no discernible audio. Maybe there is a bad connection on the TV Tuner's PCB board somewhere. I don't think it is bad contacts between the TV tuner and the PCI slot like I had previously as Windows XP and Ubuntu Linux could still detect the the TV tuner. Watching Youtube videos are working fine by the way, so that rules out any problems with my computer's motherboard.

Should I Buy A Replacement?

Six years - that's how long I have had this TV tuner. I must say, it has served me (and my family too) well.

I am wondering now if I should get a replacement. But there is hardly anything worth watching on the local free-to-air telly these days. Repeats, low-budget dramas and game shows, shopping programmes that try to sell me over priced items - I think you get the picture.

Also if I am not mistaken, those USB-typed digital TV tuners costs at least twice compared to the one that I bought 6 years ago. Money is a bit hard to come by these days.

I don't think I will be going for the PCI-type tuners as opening up the computer is a bit of a hassle. No analog TV tuners too as their days are numbered. Yes. Those USB type devices would be nice.

Something for me to ponder over the next couple of days I suppose.



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