FXTV (BSD X TV)Ver. 1.03 (Updated 2/12/01)
What is it?
FXTV is a BSD application that provides TV-in-a-window and
image/audio/video capture capabilities for Brooktree-based tuner/capture
cards. Click here for some snapshots, and be sure
to check out the MPEG audio and video samples.
To use Fxtv, you need FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD, or BSDI as well as a
capture card based on the Brooktree 848, 849, 878, or 879 chips. Examples
include the Hauppauge Win/TV, the STV TV PCI, and the Intel Smart
Video Recorder III.
What features are implemented?
- New: Flip channel feature - fast switch to last channel (Steve Reid)
- New: Support for France channel set (Daniel Dagneaux)
- New: DEV3 video input, VIDEO/LINE[1-3] audio input support
- New: Various fixes (see ChangeLog)
- Support for PixelView Remote Control (Roger Hardiman and Bryan Collins)
- Support for Hauppauge Remote Control (Jukka Simila and Roger Hardiman)
- Multi-TV card support
- Multi-/no-soundcard support, and TV audio on CD-, MIC-, or LINE-IN
- Video Window Annotation & Action Rtns for Full-Screen Surfing
- Tuning Features, Station IDs, Freq Tuning, Fmt Sel
- Direct Video enhancements for moving and restacking TV window
- Image, Audio, and Video (w/ Audio) Save-to-Disk w/ MPEG encode option
- FPS control and Zoom Fullscreen enhancement
- Video-mode switching when video window is zoomed
- Menu and toolbar capture controls
- Zoom and Freeze video; Audio mute and volume control
- Visual support: 8/15/16/24/32bpp
- Transfer Modes: Direct video, shared XImage, standard XImage
- Moveable/resizable X window (all transfer modes)
- Auto-selection of best visual and transfer mode
- Dynamic color cube size for pseudo-color visuals
- App-resource file and command-line options and Xt action routines
Where do I get it?
Get the FreeBSD Port here:
For the NetBSD port, follow this link:
Installing Fxtv with the port will simplify your life ("make install"
and you're done, or "make HAVE_XFREE86=NO install" for
But in case you prefer otherwise, here's a link to the source package it
will fetch and build for you (fxtv-1.03.tgz).
You'll also need the BSD Brooktree (bktr) driver. Normally, newer
driver revisions can be found at
How do I build & run it?
See README for details on building, installing, and
using it. The README also contains information on how
to obtain utility programs that are used by and useful in combination with
See the BSD Brooktree driver page (http://www.telepresence.strath.ac.uk/bt848/)
for further details.
What's it look like?
Click here to find out.
Cool Stuff (MPEG Samples)
<<< All clips have high-quality stereo audio, so enable this in
MpegTV or your favorite MPEG player. >>>
See the README for details on playing these clips.
Play the video and system streams with an MPEG System stream-capable
player like MPEG-TV.
The first clip is a 320x240 MPEG system stream of the "Special Ops
Force" intro. It was captured in IYUV on Fxtv 1.00 with CD-quality
audio (44KHz 16-bit stereo). Capture rate 24fps, encode rate 24fps, two
capture files on separate disks were used, and for max quality I chose to
use all I-frames in the MPEG.
For size comparison, note that for the same input data an IBPB frame
pattern given to mpeg_encode squeezes the video down to a 6.4M file, and an
IBPBIBPBPB pattern drops it down to 6.1M.
Capturing this data at 15fps and encoding at 24fps (mpeg_encode's min frame
speed) with IBPBIBPBPB yields a 5.9M file. So basically capturing slower
doesn't buy you much for MPEGs, and you should only drop down below 24fps
to avoid capture pauses from disk bandwidth saturation. In my case, 30fps
capture looks real nice, but has pauses. Adding raw partition, AIO, or
vinum write support in the future may help.
Keep in mind that in all the above, the CD-quality audio was 2.9Meg of the
MPEG system stream's size.
Here's a 320x240 MPEG system stream captured in IYUV on Fxtv 0.72 with
CD-quality audio. The source raw capture data was just over 360 Meg:
Here's an older 240x180 system stream of a show teaser captured in RGB:
NOTE: All of these clips were captured on standard (non-AV) EIDE drives on
a Pentium motherboard. So you don't have to have a power system to capture
movies -- just some average disk bandwidth.