January 20, 2006 SnapStream Media develops digital entertainment products that leverage PC technology and there's logically no end to what can be achieved given the rate of development of the multi-splendorous thing that is the PC, but sometimes we just shake our head when it comes to trying to look into what might be possible in the distant future, let alone the near future. SnapStream's Beyond TV DVR software received PC Magazine's Product of the Year Award in December 2004, was referred to as "an idea whose time has come" by the Associated Press and declared "better than TiVo" by Maximum PC. In 2005, the company produced the Hydra PVR which records TEN shows at the same time, bettering the company’s previous top-of-the-range Medusa, which records five shows consecutively. Now it has gone one better again with the creation of the Godzilla PVR. Godzilla is an ultra high end HTPC designed to showcase what can be done with a sick mind and a copy of Beyond TV 4 - it is capable of recording 11 shows, (4 high definition and 7 standard definition), all at the same time.
With Beyond TV 4’s HDTV support and with its unlimited tuners, you can create your own monster system. Indeed, if anyone can create one bigger than this, please let us know.
Beyond TV 4 supports DivX, FM Radio, recording of over-the-air (OTA) digital and HDTV content, and a new browse-by-category feature, as well as numerous stability and performance improvements.
Added HDTV Support
With the broadcast flag being struck down this summer, consumers will continue to be able to capture HDTV content on their DVR PCs. Support for capturing HDTV shows broadcast on digital channels offers Beyond TV 4 users six times the picture quality of standard definition television, along with impressive Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. The combined sharper picture and sound now brings the highest quality picture to Beyond TV’s already intuitive and feature-rich DVR experience. Additionally, Beyond TV 4’s electronic program guide creates customized, integrated program lineups for United States users which allow them to scroll through digital and analog channels in one easy-to-use program guide.
Beyond TV 4’s support of DivX allows users to record direct to DivX from software encode cards or ShowSqueeze to DivX from any TV tuner card. DivX files, at one-tenth the size of MPEG-2 files, are ideal for saving hard disk space and for transfer to portable media devices.
Browse by Category
Beyond TV 4’s new browse by category feature makes finding movies and sporting events, as well as programs in other categories, quicker and easier than ever. Search categories include movies, drama, comedy, sports, and more.
Improved Multiple Tuner Support
Beyond TV 4 also features multiple tuner support with free additional multiple tuner at no additional cost. This allows users to easily create systems with both analog and digital tuners, or with multiple tuners of either type. Multiple tuner support enables users to record shows on analog and digital channels simultaneously with the appropriate hardware.
Beyond TV 4’s FM Radio support allows users to experience FM radio on their DVR. Users can skip commercials and replay their favorite songs. In addition, integrated presets allow quick access to favorite stations.
SnapStream Media’s newest Beyond TV release features more than fifty features, stability and performance improvements. These improvements include a faster program guide and search features, a redesigned user interface and support for advanced configurations, among other things. The more than fifty new improvements are described on the company’s website.
“Beyond TV 4 is a major advancement in our DVR technology,” said Rakesh Agrawal, CEO and president of SnapStream Media. “We’re introducing a slew of new capabilities, including support for HDTV and digital TV, DivX and more useful search capabilities – all delivered with the polish and finish that SnapStream is known for. And apart from the big new features, Beyond TV is faster, more stable and easier to use than ever. It’s never been easier for a consumer to convert their PC into a powerful DVR.”
Beyond TV 4 is available for new users for US$69.99. Current users can upgrade for US$29.99. SnapStream Media is also offering HDTV bundles that include an HDTV antenna, a coaxial cable, and a compatible HDTV tuner card. These bundles include everything a user needs for setting up an HDTV compatible DVR, and start at US$99.99.