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How can I get Windows Media Center to record HD shows that I can watch live?

    Question

  • I have been using Windows Media Center on my Win7 computer along with my HDHomeRun (HDHR-US) to record TV from the HD version of broadcast channels such as NBC for a number of years. I recently switched TV providers to Comcast digital cable and have just noticed that while I can still watch HD versions of shows inside Media Center, I can no longer record them. When I right-click a show in the guide and click "Record," media center beeps like normal, but it does not begin recording and there's no indication why it's not recording.

    When I switch to the non-HD version of the same channel, I can both watch and record the same show.

    Given the symptoms of being able to watch and record non-HD but only watch without recording HD, I'm guessing this is intentional. But I thought I'd ask if anybody here has advice or a recommendation for how I can record HD versions of those shows using Media Center like I used to without buying new hardware or switching away from Comcast.

    If anybody can point me to more info on my local machine, such as a WMC log file telling me why it won't record, I'd be happy to do some more debugging on my own, but unfortunately, I don't even know where to look.

    Thanks for any ideas or tips you can offer,

    e-


    Eric Knox

    Sunday, August 19, 2012 5:52 AM

Answers

  • Hi Eric,

    Common issue in Utah because there is an extensive network of rebroadcasters providing the big networks to small communities across the state. Because WMC doesn't actually scan to see which stations you can actually receive, but just makes a guess based on your zip code, it is often wrong. Go into Tasks > Settings > TV > Guide > Edit Channels > one of the problem channels > Edit Sources. You'll see multiple sets of sources on different channels. Check the Tune column in HDHomeRun Setup for that channel, the part before the -. Uncheck the entries in WMC that don't match that number. Just as an example, for KSLDT, you might have entries on channel 38 and 27, while HDHomeRun Setup shows 38-3. Uncheck the channel 27 entries. Repeat for the other channels that are having problems, channels that are having problems, including their subchannels.

    Meanwhile, I suggest we submit a case to the following forum as well

    http://experts.windows.com/frms/windows_entertainment_and_connected_home/f/114.aspx

    Thanks.

    Kevin Ni


    Please remember to click “Mark as Answer” on the post that helps you, and to click “Unmark as Answer” if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.

    Wednesday, August 22, 2012 10:42 AM

All replies

  • Hi,

    You can record the high-definition (HD) programs with DVR (Digital Video Recorder) service.

    More information about DVR Recording, please see: http://customer.comcast.com/help-and-support/cable-tv/scheduling-a-dvr-recording/

    Please Note: Since the website is not hosted by Microsoft, the link may change without notice. Microsoft does not guarantee the accuracy of this information.


    Tracy Cai

    TechNet Community Support

    Tuesday, August 21, 2012 7:17 AM
    Moderator
  • Thank you for your idea Tracy. I understand that I could rent (or maybe even purchase) a DVR and accomplish the goal of recording HD shows. In fact, I could probably record more than just the broadcast channel shows I'm limited to with my current setup.

    However with this request, I was trying to get back to what I had prior to my switch to Comcast which was using my own Clear QAM tuner (HDHomeRun) + WMC to record HD shows. I wasn't concerned with being limited just to broadcast channels, and I had the freedom to manipulate the shows I recorded (converting to play on my phone/tablet, copying to my laptop for later viewing or streaming to my xbox).

    While I can do many of those things with a Comcast DVR + on demand service, I've got a number of years of experience built up around using my HDHomeRun to record to my own hard drive, and I was looking to see if I could continue using that experience.

    So far, I'm assuming that I'm out of luck and it's time for me to figure out how to accomplish my needs via a different mechanism (like a DVR setup), but I was hoping somebody here might have some info that would help me be able to continue using my HDHomeRun + WMC.

    Thanks for taking the time to make a suggestion,

    e-


    Eric Knox

    Tuesday, August 21, 2012 3:32 PM
  • Hi Eric,

    Common issue in Utah because there is an extensive network of rebroadcasters providing the big networks to small communities across the state. Because WMC doesn't actually scan to see which stations you can actually receive, but just makes a guess based on your zip code, it is often wrong. Go into Tasks > Settings > TV > Guide > Edit Channels > one of the problem channels > Edit Sources. You'll see multiple sets of sources on different channels. Check the Tune column in HDHomeRun Setup for that channel, the part before the -. Uncheck the entries in WMC that don't match that number. Just as an example, for KSLDT, you might have entries on channel 38 and 27, while HDHomeRun Setup shows 38-3. Uncheck the channel 27 entries. Repeat for the other channels that are having problems, channels that are having problems, including their subchannels.

    Meanwhile, I suggest we submit a case to the following forum as well

    http://experts.windows.com/frms/windows_entertainment_and_connected_home/f/114.aspx

    Thanks.

    Kevin Ni


    Please remember to click “Mark as Answer” on the post that helps you, and to click “Unmark as Answer” if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.

    Wednesday, August 22, 2012 10:42 AM
  • Kevin - thanks! It turns out that your answer was close enough for me to figure out my problem which ended up being slightly different than your idea.

    When I drilled into a particular channel's Edit Sources page, I noticed that the HDHomeRun tuners both showed up listed as "Digital Cable (ClearQAM...". The text was long enough that it clipped at the end of "ClearQAM". But the interesting part was that neither one was checked. Checking those checkboxes enabled WMC to record that channel again.

    I was thrown off b/c I could watch that channel, even when the Edit Sources checkboxes were cleared, but I couldn't record until I enabled those checkboxes.

    I'm still not sure how I got into that state. I'm wondering about the 'hdhomerun_wmc_sync.exe' program that SiliconDust created which is supposed to poke all the right channel info into WMC, but at this point, I don't want to try re-running that program now that I've got my channels functioning again.

    Thanks for the tip!

    e-


    Eric Knox

    Friday, August 24, 2012 6:06 AM