One of the key ingredients in creating your own home theater PC is the interface for browsing media and recording programming from the couch. I’m partial to Windows Media Center Edition as my own personal solution, but there are plenty of reasons to consider alternatives. Assuming you have a computer with the horsepower and hardware, there’s no sense buying a whole new computer just to record television. I’m no fan of any of the interfaces bundled with tuner cards from ATI or Hauppage. Functionality in the MythTV project, an open source media center solution, remains a myth (in my opinion). GB-PVR represents a solid solution for creating a usable media center experience with an existing computer and a TV tuner card. The interface is slick and supports recording television (with optional multiple tuners), playback of movies and music, and photo browsing.
The key feature it lacks at this point is HDTV tuner support GB-PVR supports both the U.S. standard ATSC HDTV and European DVB HDTV. Through a variety of extensions, extras like weather and IM (diy MST3K anyone?) are supported. [Windows 2k/XP $0.00]