Well, well, well... When we took a look at Beyond TV 3.5 in one of its latest beta revisions (Aug 24th), SnapStream told us that we should expect BTV 3.5 to go gold in under two weeks. It has been over a month now since then, and SnapStream is ready to go at last to introduce their final product.

What was the hold up? SnapStream's original hope was that BTV 3.5 was going to be the final notch that put them at the same level or maybe even bring them one up over Frey's SageTV 2.0. The problem was that on the feature level, BTV 3.5 was lacking in bringing a superior approach to the multi-tuner system. As for the GUI, we have maintained that, in our opinion, Beyond TV has a better layout and design than SageTV, but with the introduction of Meedio into the mix, we prefer Meedio Essential (ME) over both.

If you haven't read our Beyond TV 3.5 beta and Beyond TV 3 articles, they provide a good context for the purpose of this article. In essence, we had two major points on which we wanted to see improvement:
  1. Tying together different broadcast sources (i.e. antenna and standard cable).
  2. The UI with less obtrusive information panels.
With a surprising twist, SnapStream has come back to AnandTech with a different look, literally.

Beyond TV 3.5 – Going Gold
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  • Puppetman - Saturday, October 09, 2004 - link

    Whoops. Posted a blank.

    Two things I noticed when comparing SnapStream and Sage.

    1) SnapStream explicitly states that it supports the ATI TV Wonder cards (different from the All-In-Wonder cards). SageTV lists a bunch of chip names and product ids at the bottom. Good luck trying to figure that out.

    2) SnapStream has a guide for Canadian tv channels. SageTV is US-only, so if you live in Canada, good luck programming shows or figuring out what's on tv that night.

    Unfort, MythTV had problems with the ATI TV Wonder Pro last time I tried it (due to driver issues). Maybe it's cleaned up.

    Puppetman
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  • Puppetman - Saturday, October 09, 2004 - link

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