MythTV is a Free Open Source software digital video recorder (DVR) project distributed under the terms of the GNU GPL. It has been under heavy development since 2002, and now contains most features one would expect from a good DVR.
- Watch and record analog and/or digital TV, including HDTV.
- Pause, skip, and rewind live TV shows.
- Completely automatic commercial detection/skipping, with manual correction via an intuitive cutlist editor.
- Intelligently schedules recordings to avoid conflicts.
- Parental controls to keep your kids out of the good shows.
- Watch and archive DVDs.
- Listen to your digital music collection.
- Schedule and administer many functions remotely via a web browser.
- Flexible client/server architecture allows multiple frontend client machines to access content served by one or more backend servers (although the most common installation consists of a single computer running both the client and server together).
- Many more...
For an more technical overview, read the Executive Overview
And a functional diagram of what all the various parts that make up a MythTV installation do in relation to each other.
What does it look like?
A practical example of MythTV:
MythTV (Version 0.23) runs as an addition to a home AV setup, feeding into an Onkyo receiver. The MythTV box has the following specifications (and approx pricing):
- Capture Card: Hauppauge WintTV Nova T 500 HD - Dual "DVB-T" Freeview Tuner ($150)
- Motherboard: ASUS M2N68-AM PLUS Micro ATX ($90)
- CPU: AMD 6000+ Athlon 64x2 3.0GHz ($150)
- Graphics card: GeForce 9500GT PCI-E 512MB DDR2 128-bit, NVIDIA SLI-Ready, connected to receiver using a DVI to HDMI cable. ($95)
- RAM: 2GB PC-6400 (800MHz) ($80)
- HDD: 1.5TB ($200)
- Case: Silverstone LC17 Case ($180)
- PSU: Standard 460 watt ($100)
- Audio: SPDIF Optical Out card, connected to receiver by a coaxial cable. ($20)
TOTAL COST $1065 inc GST (June 2009)
Hauppauge WinTV Remote
Standard wireless keyboard and mouse
MythMote - Android-based remote for MythTV
Other Equipment in Use
Patriot 'all-in-one' media player, networked, to stream recorded content to a second HD LCD screen, connected via HDMI. ($180)
Other Ways to Access MythTV
- Convert existing box to "backend only" & install a separate "front end"
- Improve remote options - wireless range
- Add a second dual-channel capture card (ability to watch/record up to four channels at the same time!)
- Add a satellite DVB-S capture card - and Sky (?) to the box
- Better ventilation
- Tidy the AV cabinet?
MythTV project website: