UPDATE 2:I forgot that I hadn't finished this problem off, in case anyone actually needs the info, there is only one solution that works. You need to completely shut down the machine, unplug the power supply, wait for the capacitors to drain, then turn it on. This doesn't work 100% of the time, but it seems to fix the problem. So basically when I know I'm gonna need to have more than 2 programs recording, I will go through that process and it usually works well, resulting in all 4 tuners working.
As for solving the problem, I personally believe its an issue with the BIOS (since it does something similar in Ubuntu as well), though I can't get Gigabyte to believe me. Essentially, the solution is to simply work around the problem.

UPDATE: Yet again, I was wrong. It's still disappearing at will and I'm getting occasional BSODs relating to nothing in particular, also, it appears that this not only happens on resume from sleep, but occasionally after rebooting. My latest theory is the Philips SAA7160 PCI-e bridge is to blame. From what I can tell, this is a common element of both the Leadtek Px2300H and the AVerMedia TwinStar (A188) cards. It seems that having 2 of that chip running on the same motherboard causes them to merge and become the same device.

My current setup has 2x TwinStar cards.
One is:
Bus 8, device 0, function 0.

The other is:
Bus 10, device 0, function 0.

But when I see only one device in Device Manager, it's:
Bus 9, device 0, function 0.

And the Creative SB X-Fi Titanium takes up
Bus 8, device 0, function 0.

Weird right? Anyway, it seems to be an affliction of a few different motherboards (I finally found something about it on google) so I'll email Gigabyte but I don't really expect there to be a useful response.
UPDATE: As I thought... Gigabyte were useless, told me to update my chipset drivers


I figured I would get another AVerMedia TwinStar PCI-e (A188) dual tuner DVB-T card considering I have encountered many situations when I’ve needed more tuners.

Unfortunately MSY have decided to increase the price since I bought the first one. It was $84 six or so months ago, but I had to pay $93. It’s not *that* much more, but somehow $84 sounds like a much smaller number.

Anyway, as per usual I had a problem, one that I thought I had finally solved a few months back. I thought the solution was to remove the Leadtek cards that were causing the problem (going on the assumption that they were somehow incompatible or damaged). Apparently I was wrong.

Now in the present day, I put another TV tuner, identical in every way to the current one, in my computer and low and behold: CRASH… BSOD … almost the same issues I had when the Leadtek cards were in, although this time at least it gave me the name of the driver causing it. I even had one of the cards disappear from Device Manager.

This immediately rang alarm bells and I knew that my problem had not been caused by faulty hardware (unless I was extremely unlucky – like 1 in a trillion unlucky).

So once again I was faced with a few possible causes:

  1. Faulty Drivers
  2. Incompatibility with hardware/software
  3. Bad PCIe slot
  4. BIOS issues
  5. Bad hardware (like I said… almost impossible)

This time faulty drivers were at the top of the list, though I was still thinking it might have been a problem with the BIOS/motherboard.

To test the faulty drivers I figured the easiest way to test for problems would be to remove the drivers, reboot, and reinstall the latest drivers from AVerMedia. After that, I opened up 7MC and watched TV for about 25 seconds, then it started to jitter then BSOD. YAY! So it wasn’t the drivers.

Next, I ended up ruling out the BIOS as a cause simply because it just didn’t seem possible that I am the only one on the entire internet that has had the same set of circumstances (and I searched and searched for hours).

Then I tried switching the cards around, making sure they’re all in properly. Still no luck.

Just for good measure I also dropped the BIOS back to F3 which apparently was a good idea anyway considering the later versions were buggy.

That left me with little in the way of options, and there is practically no way of testing for incompatibility (although I could have switched tuners with the HTPC’s …but I didnt go there).

Out of options, I decided to go back to the drivers as the cause. This time, I decided to go back to the late 90s and remove the drivers and cards the old fashioned way.

Here’s what I did:

  1. Changed the Windows Update settings and ensured it will NOT use Windows Update to get the latest drivers.
  2. Uninstalled both tuners in Device Manager ticking “remove driver”
  3. Uninstalled all AVerMedia software
  4. Rebooted
  5. Removed both tuners
  6. Booted back into Windows
  7. Opened up regedit and remove all traces of any tuner in HKLM/Software/Microsoft/Windows/Media Center
  8. Deleted relevant entries in /Service/Video/Tuners AND /Settings/TVConfig/Recorders AND /Settings/RecorderSettings0 thru 3 (removed contents of ‘id’ and change ‘isConfigured’ to ‘0’)
  9. Rebooted again
  10. Ensured EVERYTHING is as it should be without the tuners.
  11. Shutdown
  12. Installed both cards again, ensured they’re both properly seated
  13. Booted back to Windows
  14. Opened up Device Manager, ensured there are 2 unknown devices (Multimedia Controllers)
  15. Extract the drivers from the AVerMedia self-executing EXE
  16. Ran the installer
  17. Rebooted again
  18. Ensured both tuners and their accompanying IR receivers are ready and working
  19. Run 7MC’s TV setup wizard, made sure there was 4 tuners selected
  20. BAM and the dirt is gone! … or rather, it works!

I did a few practice recordings from 4 separate channels at the same time to make sure all of them are functional, they were.

So it seems there is a lesson to be learnt form all this:

If you put 2 of the same cards into a machine, one after the other, you need to completely remove the first card, and it’s drivers, before installing the second.

One would’ve thought with the advent of Plug-n-Play that this wouldn’t be required, but obviously its an exception not seen very often (and naturally I ran into it).

Live and learn I guess.

I would be curious to see if I could use my old Leadtek cards again, though I currently have all PCIe ports occupied so I guess I’ll never know (now I wish I had forked out the $50 more and got the UD7 model with more PCIe ports).

Anyways, all is well that ends well I suppose,