A tuner card is an internal or external computer device that allows for connecting a cable television signal to a computer. The standard tuner card features a coaxial connection and some also include RCA (yellow, red, and white) connections. Newer models also may feature HDMI connections. Internal tuner cards will install in a PCI slot, whereas external tuner cards plug in to a USB port. One of the more well-known brands of tuner cards is Hauppage and their line of WinTV devices.
A tuner card is used to watch and record live TV on a computer. With a tuner card, a computer can be turned into a DVR device, set up for recording TV shows on the fly or on a set schedule. The lower priced tuner cards allow for basic TV viewing and recording. Higher priced models allow for high definition viewing and recording and some even allow for the recording of video game play.