Enable unlimited number of tuners in Windows 7 Media Center (with Big Screen EPG)
This feature has been often requested by Windows 7 users (who want to configure more than 4 tuners in Media Center) – and although I figured this out a while back (during Beta2) – I wasn’t allowed to reveal/share how this was actually done.
Since the cat’s now finally out of the bag – I’m happy to finally be able to reveal the ability to do this has actually been built into Big Screen EPG for probably 1.5 years now – since v0.2beta (and I previously couldn’t reveal it due to it being a secret – but given this other tool has now been released – it’s no longer the case).
I’ve been personally using 6 x DVB-T tuners on my own system for a while now – and although it was a little flakey in the past (with some tuners having signal strength issues – probably due to my booster/splitter not being good enough) – the June/July Cumulative updates seem to have stabilized it somewhat.
To utilize this feature – you need to have v0.2beta (ie. Feb 2009 release or later) of Big Screen EPG (v1.0b final is latest version) – and do the following –
- Install all the tuners you wish to use on Windows 7 (so drivers etc are installed in Device Manager).
- Do an initial Live TV Setup in Media Center so the country defaults are loaded in (so go to at least the point where you start scanning for stations – and you can stop the scan straight away if you want). Don’t setup any epg’s etc at this point – it’s just important that the database is initialized.
- Open a command prompt (preferably run as administrator).
- change to the Big Screen EPG Install Directory :
ie. ‘cd %Program Files%Big ScreenEpg’
- Run the bsetool.exe using the –pimptuner command line option (as follows ) :
Syntax : bsetool.exe –pimptuner:<numberoftuners>:<vss-locale>
ie. To Enable up to 32 tuners for Australia (locale = ‘vss-au’)
Note: For other countries – find out the correct iso country code and insert it there –
vss-gb : UK
vss-nz : New Zealand
vss-no : Norway
vss-de : Germany
vss-dk : Denmark
vss-ca : Canada
Note that for the USA – it’s a little different and I think you can just use ‘vss’ by itself (although doing same command line with ‘vss-us’ won’t hurt either).
- Now go back into Windows 7 Media Center and run the live tv setup again (run the setup tv signal so it wipes your existing configuration) – and presto – all your additional tuners will be available in the list (where normally it would only show you the first 4 tuners at most in the past).
That’s it – enjoy – and now there’s absolutely no reason not to upgrade to Windows 7 Media Center (I know a bunch of you were sticking with MCE2005 and Vista RTM for this reason)…