"Watching Two TV Programs in Same Room"4.5 starson by Sid Gibson
Pros: Excellent video quality, 5-minute setup, sounds great through high-end headphones
Cons: Display could be brighter
Summary: As an aging (61) toy lover (especially the electronic and gadget kind), I get first in line for the latest and greatest. Slingbox Pro is on top of my latest and greatest. This is not my first attempt at "TV on PC"; tried 2 Hauppaugue PVRs before (PCI install). While I had grave doubts about Slingbox Pro, I took my 3rd plunge--WOW, what a dream. Having a home network made installation a 5-minute snap.
Until Slingbox Pro, my wife and I would go separate ways on nights when our favorite programs conflicted. Sure, I can do the DVR or TIVO thing, but I know it won't work for us. It would be 3 months, if ever, before I found the time to view my missed program. With Slingbox Pro, I remotely access my cable box in a different room on my wired networked laptop (17" monitor), my wife watches American Idol on Fox and I watch NCIS on NBC in the same room--I put my HD 650 headphones on and I see an image of equal quality as the TV (not HD, but great) and am immersed in the action with my headphones.
Gadgets are great, but the novelty often wears off after a short time. Not so with the Slingbox Pro--no more debates, no more watching different TVs. Now when my wife grabs the physical remote there is no grabbing and pulling. I simply open to my virtual remote and quietly choose my selected program and we will live happily every after.
GREAT product--no cons of consequence. Advice: Best when you have a very fast broudband connection, lots of RAM (3GB) and fast video card--streaming is instant and no delay in speech and video.
A funny looking long brick worth every penny of $250--if I tested it first, I would have been willing to pay twice the price.
Alienware Area51 "Laptop", Intel 3.6Ghz, nVidea Quadro FX GO 1400, 17" 1900X1200 Native, 3GB RAM.