I’ve used a few products to help capture HD footage from my Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 so I’m pretty familiar with what’s out there to accomplish this. AVerMedia has released a new product that’s aimed at helping capture HD content but utilizing a laptop.
The AVerTV Express HD DVR is an Express HD capture card that slides into your laptop’s Express Card slot and lets you connect a component source to capture HD content. Included with the card is a dongle that features the component inputs as well as a left and right audio input.Overall, this small setup should let you watch and record HD video on your laptop for archival and playback purposes.
Setup was pretty easy as I installed the included software and plugged the card into my laptop. Now, one thing I don’t like is the looseness of the dongle when attatched to the card. The connector has very little tension holding it in so I can see it slipping out a little easier. Perhaps a locking clip would’ve been a good choice as having five cables connected to the dongle can induce some strain. Also, even with the bracer, the card had a lot of wiggle in my Express card slot. I’m more concerned about the lack of locking for the dongle though as small tension it has might decrease over time and thus, making the dongle very easily able to slip off the card.
Now, Hauppauge’s HD PVR lets you view content both on the computer and has a pass through to the TV. The AVerTV Express HD PVR only allows for you to watch the content on your laptop. Some might want a pass through so they can just use the laptop to record while watching on the big screen, but this product isn’t designed to do that. Now, making the laptop the primary display won’t be any issue if the action on the screen happens in real time, unlike the Hauppauge HD PVR using my same laptop where the video lagged behind the action a second or so. Otherwise, playing with the AVerTV Express HD DVR on your laptop would be pretty useless.
AVerTV Express HD DVR comes with some basic software that’ll let you record with. It’s nothing too complicated nor is it anything that’s really going to stand out compared to other capture software out there. It does have some nice big icons so you can easily navigate through the menus. You can do some adjustments to the codec you decide to record to such as setting bitrate, resolution, and a few other things.
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