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Compro VideoMate V600 External TV Tuner - HDTV up to 1680 x 1050 (Page 3)

By: Mike Wright from Mar 19, 2007 @ 23:00 CDT
TweakTown Rating: 90%Manufacturer: Compro

Picture Quality

As I've noted earlier, I've had the opportunity to test out several TV tuners, both the internal and external variety, and while the picture quality is passable, I've noticed it isn't great. Given the technologies that have been around, I've just come to expect a certain amount of graininess in tuners and this has been a simple fact of life. Several different products by almost as many manufacturers garnered the same results, so it was obvious it was a technological limitation that we were facing.

So when I was researching this item and saw some notations about a 2D+3D Y/C Separation, I was curious as to whether it would make any difference with the actual clarity and quality of the displayed television output.

I can say that I was truly impressed after I first turned on the tuner and watched on a 21" CRT monitor. The graininess was mostly gone and there was very little difference between what I was watching and what I am used to seeing on a CRT style television set. I am going to include some photos of the display and while they look good, they still do not do full justice to what I witnessed on screen.

Full Screen

As with most of the photos I took, there was a slight amount of camera shake due to not using a flash. Even with this consideration, the display quality is still far superior to what I am used to seeing with a tuner device on the monitor.

Picture in a Picture (PIP)

This feature was a huge surprise. While I have played around with external pass-through boxes like this before, they generally give you a choice of PC or television. Since the device works as a pass-through, there isn't any direct interaction with the operating system. The Compro V600 has addressed this issue and given us the opportunity to keep on working and still watch your favorite TV shows.

The caveat to this is that you have to choose only one sound source, either the system or the television. This was a pretty minor inconvenience, however, considering that I wasn't even expecting to have the ability to use a PIP display type.

Oh, and if that inset box is too big, hit the PIP button on the remote and it will adjust itself smaller for you. You can also use the big blue button on the remote to move it to a more convenient location on your screen if you like.

Channel Surfing

Interesting feature here if you want it. There are nine different channels that rotate through a cycle to allow you to see what is on. I find it rather annoying myself, but I know of some folks who like this type of thing. As the channels rotate through their cycle, they play for a few seconds then freeze so that the next channel can be shown. Punch the number pad 1-9 in accordance to the window you want that is on the screen and you will be instantly taken to your channel of choice.

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