Inspired by Make, I’ve decided to get my hands dirty again by building a PVR (personal video recorder) for fun. Tivo’s aren’t available in Canada and any of the commercial units are just a tad too "closed" for my liking.
I’m going with MythTV as the core application running on Linux (there is a decent overview of MythTV here). The distro I’ve chosen is the very slick KnoppMyth. It looks like it is definitely the quickest way to get to the end result without having to spend a lot of time hacking Linux (which I have done in the past and would prefer not to have to do again).
Gaining access to Canadian TV listings was a little bit of a concern initially but it looks like MythTV works with a feed from Zap2it Labs.
The PC I chose is an off-lease Dell GXF240 (P4 1.7 – small desktop). I liked the form-factor, but the card cage may be a little small for the cards (at least the PVR-500). I’m hoping I can get them to fit, but think I’m going to have to do some Dremel work. It was only a couple of hundred bucks, so I don’t mind experimenting.
The 300GB hard drive, DVD burner, and PC should be arriving shortly. Then it’ll be time to get to work.