It doesn't take but a moment to realize that I was pleasantly surprised with the Compro VideoMate V600 tuner box. Installation was a snap, the features included rank at the top of the list and the improved picture quality was simply amazing. While we are impressed, we would have liked to see extra output connectors such as HDMI, DVI and digital audio output (through digital coaxial or optical) but we might be asking for a little too much at this stage as the technology is still improving and no other product of this kind as these types of features yet either. Additionally, resolutions up to 1080p (1920 x 1080 progressive 16:9 widescreen) would have been preferred but at this stage most HDTV broadcasting is limited to 720p (1280 x 720 progressive) anyway. You will be hard pressed to find any real difference between the display of this product and your normal CRT style television set.
While you may not have a need for all the features included, you will certainly find several that suit your needs. The enhanced resolutions were a nice touch and the ability to run at a 1600 resolution was amazing. It also supports refresh rates ranging from 60-75Hz, so even those with sensitive eyes should run into no problems. Just make sure that your monitor supports the resolution and refresh rate that you are setting and you should be fine.
As far as price is concerned, availability looks to be rather limited right now, but this isn't too surprising given that it is a new product but we have been told it will be more widely available soon. While I wasn't able to find it in the United States yet, I was able to find a few Australian retailers selling it for $160 - 170 AUD (roughly $127 - 135 USD). So while not the cheapest tuner available, I still stand firm in noting that it is certainly one of the best you will find at this stage. Other manufacturers may catch up later, but Compro has the lead for now.
Bottom line... If you've been looking for the means to get TV to your personal computer, there are an absolute plethora of choices out there. If you happen to be looking for exceptional quality in your television output, your choices are narrowed down considerably. Simply put, the Compro VideoMate V600 has the best picture quality of any external tuner box tested to date. You will not be disappointed with the V600 or its feature set.
Exceptional picture quality
External unit is very easy to set up
Remote accesses all features
Supports up to 16xx resolution and widescreen too
Excellent feature set
Rating - 9 out of 10 and TweakTown's "MUST HAVE" Editor's Choice Award!
PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.
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Canada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon Canada's website.
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