I have Windows Media Center working fine with my Shaw 'set top box' (the Motorola DCX 3200M that they are supplying for free). I am watching TV through WMC via my computer monitor (a 28" HD monitor).
I have two TV tuners, a Haupauge PCI card sitting in a slot in my Dell Inspiron desktop and a Dell Angel USB TV tuner that came with the desktop (Amazon.com: Dell Angel Windows 7). It is the latter I'm using to connect to the set top box as both have the audio/video RCA connections (yellow/red/white). This of course is not an HDMI connection and so I'm not watching HD on my computer screen but it allows me full use of Windows Media Center to view channel guide and watch TV. The Dell TV tuner also comes with an IR receiver and blaster which allows me to use the WMC remote control and the WMC guide instead of the Shaw remote and the Shaw guide, but both work, I can use either interchangeably.
I previously used the Haupauge TV installed in my computer as the TV tuner by connecting the wall cable directly to it, but you can only get channels 2 to 27 this way. In order to get all the channels I'm subscribed to, I needed to interface the Shaw set top box to my computer. The Dell TV tuner allowed this as both the set top box and the Dell TV tuner have audio/video RCA connections. I might get higher resolution if I used the HDMI out from the set top to the S-Video in on the Dell (the only other input on the Dell) by buying a converting connector but I didn't try that.
The only problem I had during setup was training WMC on the remote control as you'll see. In any case, here's what I did. Please note if you buy the Dell TV tuner it has illustrated instructions on how to connect to a set top box.
1. Connect your Shaw set top box to the wall via coaxial cable, turn on/initialize.
2. Connect your set top box to the Dell TV tuner via yellow/red/white RCA cable.
3. Connect the Dell TV tuner to the computer via USB cable.
4. Connect the Infrared receiver to computer via USB.
5. Connect the IR blaster to the IR receiver and mount the red end to the IR receiver on your set top box.
6. Run Windows Media Center > Settings > TV > Configure TV signal.
7. Let WMC detect the TV tuner and set top box, and just follow thru the setup wizard. WMC should detect the TV tuner easy.
8. When it's time to tell WMC you're using a set top box the DCM 3200M wasn't in the list so I chose manual setup, I believe.
9. When it comes time for setting up the remote control, I always failed with automatic. Choose Manually setup remote.
10. For manual remote setup, you'll take the Shaw remote control and point it at your Dell IR receiver (not the Shaw set top IR receiver, like I initially thought) and you'll go thru all the buttons twice. WMC will feedback immediately on each button if you're doing it right. Takes a while. Each number, channel up/down, etc.
Once done, you know if it's working as, still in WMC setup, you'll see a thumbnail of live TV. It will ask you to test how quickly the channels change, I chose 'fast', but in reality now I have a little lag between entering on the WMC remote and having the Shaw box respond, oh well.
That's it, you should be receiving a TV signal through your computer/WMC and have access to all functionality.
The WMC guide displayed more channels than I had so I used the Shaw remote > Guide to see which channel I had and then I edited the WMC guide to show only those channels.
I get all the Shaw channels I am subscribed for. As mentioned I can use the Shaw remote and guide or, if I use the WMC guide or numeric keys, you can see first they are registered in WMC and then a 1/2 sec later, they are input to the Shaw set top box via the IR blaster.
Please feel free to ask any questions.
LOVE WINDOWS MEDIA CENTER!! Microsoft did well on this product.
I tried the skin/theme modifying add-on, but it kinda went unstable, so I'm sticking with the blue theme for good.
Message was edited by: [shaw]brayden