on Friday introduced two new Mac OS X-based digital video recorders (DVRs) mainly aimed at the European market — the EyeTV 300 and 400.
Elgato’s original EyeTV transfers analog video to the Macintosh’s hard drive through USB. These new EyeTV devices instead use FireWire, and support a European digital television standard called Digital Video Broadcast, or DVB. DVB is available in the UK, as well as parts of Spain, Sweden, Finland, Norway, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Portugal and Australia.
DVB utilizes MPEG-2 compression, which is also used on DVD, according to Elgato Systems founder and CTO Markus Fest. “The remarkable picture and sound quality of MPEG-2 provides EyeTV users with an incredible television experience,” said Fest in a recent statement.
EyeTV 300 employs a digital video broadcasting satellite (DVB-S) tuner that works in conjunction with a satellite dish with digital or universal LNB. The EyeTV 400 uses a digital video broadcasting terrestrial (DVB-T) tuner that works with a portable antenna, included with the device. The software included with both DVRs can also work with Roxio Toast 6 Titanium (sold separately) to record video to DVD-R or Video CDs.
EyeTV 300 and EyeTV 400 require a G4/500MHz or faster with an available FireWire port; Mac OS X v10.2.8 or higher; 256MB RAM (512MB recommended), and 2GB of available hard disk space per hour of recorded TV. Check with Elgato for further DVB-specific requirements.
An Internet connection is also necessary if you plan to use the optional electronic program guide offered by tvtv, which is available in the UK, Germany, Switzerland, Austria and France.
Both devices cost €349, and will be available in early December in countries where the DVB standard is supported.