video capture cards for FreeBSD laptop

Juergen Lock nox at
Sun Jun 27 17:16:25 UTC 2010

On Wed, Jun 23, 2010 at 04:16:04PM +0200, Lars Engels wrote:
> On Wed, Jun 23, 2010 at 01:41:41PM +0200, Matthias Apitz wrote:
> > 
> > Hello,
> > 
> > I've Google'd around a bit but I don't see any real solution. My wife
> > has a FreeBSD laptop with 8-REL and wants to watch TV from time to time.
> > Any solution via USB or PCMCIA cards? Or even a small network box which
> > could be connected via LAN/WLAN by mplayer...
> > 
> > Thanks in advance
> Hi Matthias,
> the "Freecom DVB-T USB Stick" works nicely with webcamd + vlc.

That one no longer seems to be sold tho, or only at pretty high prices...
If I look at e.g.

I find usb dvb-t tuners for as cheap as 9 eur tho I don't know which
of those work with webcamd, but if you want to experiment and maybe use
the 14-day return policy if one doesn't work...  (or look up an usb tuner
on sites like

, maybe ask on freenode irc #linuxtv, find out which linux driver it
uses and check


after `make extract' in /usr/ports/multimedia/webcamd to see if
webcamd builds that driver, and hope it works too...)  But how ever
you try, don't forget to post your findings here!

 If you want hdtv in Germany you'll need dvb-s2 (if you have a
satellite dish) or dvb-c (if you have cable, but remember often
otherwise fta `private' channels are crypted on cable unless you
stick to analog transmissions which I don't know for how much longer
they'll be around and also you won't get hdtv that way), and dvb-c
and dvb-s(2) tuners are more expensive than dvb-t ones tho the picture
quality (bandwidth) also often is better than with dvb-t.  Oh and
the hdtv versions of the german `private' channels are `paytv'
everywhere (i.e. crypted), even on satellite, the only fta hdtv
chanels on Astra 19.2E atm are Das Erste, ZDF, arte, Anixe and
Servus TV.  (And EinsFestival HD but that one only plays test loops
most of the time.)

 I use a PCTV 452e Sat HDTV Pro USB dvb-s2 tuner which works pretty well
now with vdr (as well as kaffeine, mplayer, and szap-s2 with most any
player, only vlc's builtin dvb support seems to be broken for this tuner
but that I can live with.)

 If you want full pvr functionality (epg, timers, recordings,
client/server network playback/streaming/webinterface, osd, teletext,
multiple tuners...  only using a remote may still be a problem) you
can try mythtv from ports or my preliminary vdr ports (which still
have loose ends but are very much functional at least for me tho
a lot of `less important' plugins aren't ported yet, some manual
tweaking may still be required and I don't know if anyone has tested
xineliboutput's vdpau support on FreeBSD yet), see here:

and the threads linked from there like:

(most Linux users I know prefer vdr over mythtv. :)

> Jun 23 16:13:25  root: Unknown USB device: vendor 0x14aa product 0x0225 bus uhub7
> Jun 23 16:13:25  kernel: ugen7.2: <vendor 0x14aa> at usbus7
> There should also be some other Sticks with the same chip.
> The only issue I have is that it is also recognized as a ukbd, so I had
> to remove the ukbd entries in /etc/devd.conf.

 That's probably the remote...  (which other usb tuners often have extra
code for in their drivers, but webcamd doesn't support those parts yet
so you'd need to play with an extra receiver and lirc most likely if
you want to use the remote.)

 Oh and if any u.s. people are still reading, vdr seems to support atsc
now too, tho I dunno if anyone tried that with webcamd yet.


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