The ASUS EHC3-150 TV tuner, while originally released in 2009, continues to work well with today’s newer computer hardware and software.
I managed to purchase the EHC3-150 from OutletPC for under $20 (can also be found on Amazon). While I did pay a little extra for faster shipping, it actually took multiple days longer than I thought for it to arrive. Still, it came undamaged and worked perfectly fine.
Aside from installing it into an empty PCI-Express slot on my motherboard, I had to manually find and install the drivers for the TV tuner. Once you find the product page on ASUS’s website, the support tab houses the drivers. After installing those and rebooting, I was able to use Windows Media Center to scan for channels. The entire process should take less than 10 minutes.
With my Windows 8.1 desktop, this particular TV tuner works very well with Windows Media Center. Compared to my regular HDTV’s built-in TV tuner, this setup is able to not only detect more channels (via my OTA HDTV antenna), it can actually switch between them much faster. In addition, thanks to Windows Media Center, I’m able to schedule and record content, even when the Windows Media Center program is closed.
Video quality depends on your source, whether it be an OTA HDTV antenna or traditional digital cable. I primarily watch my local NBC, ABC, CBS and FOX feeds, with the bitrate and resolution varying between all of them. So, what you may have seen via your TV is the same as what you should see through Windows Media Center.
One thing to note is that there’s only one tuner, so you can’t use PiP or watch one channel while another one is recording.
Overall, I’m quite satisfied with this 2009 TV tuner. It works perfectly and does exactly what I want it to. If you’re looking for an affordable way of getting OTA HDTV or digital cable onto your computer, this is a great way to go.
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