I have a “Strong HD STU” (model SRT 5430 New) which I used to record FTA, it records and MPEG4 AVC H.264/AAC mp4a or MPEG audio and at the resolution / bit rate and frame rate that the original TV channels is in with no encryption as it saves as .mp4
From there I take the HDD over to computer drop and drag to internal HDD, now this is where it gets tricky as I use old (as in really OLD) school “TMPEG Encoder” for editing, from there I can edit, change resolution, frame rate conversion, aspect ratio, bit-rate do real time 2-pass encoding (as my computer is fast enough to process that data info) if needed for sports using ^2-pass VBR-CQ, the only problem is using old software (which I add is still brilliant and easy to use) the output file saves as MPEG1 video but I change the audio to PCM (WAVE raw) to keep the integrity without compression (that comes later).
Lets say I record a sport that is on 7two, club rugby, the original specs are 720x576i 25fps 16:9AR (64:45 DAR) with a variable bit rate that averages out to be around 3Mbits with MPEG 48kHz audio around 128kbits.
Using TMPEG I can frame by frame edit out what I don’t need (namely commercials and phase in/out loops) I can upscale the resolution to let says 1280x720 and force 16:9 aspect and change the frame rate to 50fps (to smooth it out) then change the scene detection to ultra which further smooths out PQ and change to progressive from interlace which again makes it even more smoother and much better again for the big screen.
using a variable bit rate with constant quality I set the max bit rate to 6Mbits & the minimum bit rate to 3Mbits with CQ range set to 85% and using padding option to ensure bit rate never drops below 3Mbits, using 2-pass method to ensure quality is maintained (since its MPEG1 which in the old money is VCD), as for audio it get edited but converted to PCM (WAVE) at same carrier 48kHz but bit rate way up to 1145kbps…
Yes file size is huge but again not an issue as you will find out.
Once I have done all that I then use MPEG4 HEVC H.265 / AAC mp4a at around 256kbits 48kHz encoding software namely Pazera to have the file saved as .mp4 … yes its an extra step but its needed as with HEVC encoding you can lower bit rate to around 1.5Mbits and still retain the awesome quality and file size gets drastically reduced.
In the analogue days it was no much simpler … analogue PC TV card , mine was a Dynalink PCTV which had Philips PAL B (VHF) /G (UHF) tuner with a Brooktree (which later was bought by Conextant which are the CX type decoders) BT878-A decoder and CHP-010 audio decoder for TV, FM and AM receiving, rabbit ears for the antenna or simply using Optus TV output for signal, using a program called Descaler and using the K-Lite codec pack which had all the VfW encoding dll’s, I would use “Adaptive half/scale re: interlace” 720x576 25fps and using DivX H.263 (later on would use XviD H.263) with audio using PCM 44.1kHz dual channel 1145kbits, worked great, then I would use TMPEG (like above to convert to my specific settings) to mpeg2 (DVD) and then burn onto a DVD … gees that was way back in the day doing thyat, thankfully we don’t have to sue that media storage any longer, it also took a lot longer to edit and convert as computers were no where near as fast as they are today.