How to Transfer Recordings From PVR to PC

Updated February 21, 2017

A PVR (personal video recorder) stores television programming and other multimedia for playback. The device uses an internal hard drive for storage, similar to the drives found in a computer. As with any storage device, the PVR hard drive will eventually fill up and will be unable to record more programming unless some content is deleted or loaded to another device, such as a computer with a video capture card and recording software. Standard AV cables connect the PVR to the computer.

Connect the three plugs on one end of the composite cable to the colour-matching AV OUT jacks on the back of the PVR. Insert the yellow plug on the other end of the cable into the Video IN port on the capture card, located on the back of the computer tower.

Connect the red and white plugs on the composite cable to the two jacks on the Y-adaptor, then plug the adaptor into the LINE IN jack on the back of the computer tower. The stereo signal will still come through from the PVR through this single connection.

Open the computer's video recording software by double-clicking the program name. If the video capture card was installed after the computer was purchased, you should use the recording software that came with the capture card. On a system with a pre-installed video card, use the software bundled with the computer, such as OneNote, which is common on many Microsoft systems.

Press the "PVR" menu button and use the up and down arrow keys to scroll to the recorded programs on the device. Select a program to copy and press the "Enter" or "OK" button on the PVR, depending on the model.

Press the "Play" button on the PVR, then click "Record" on the computer software to copy the show.

Click "Stop" when the recording is finished, then click the "File" tab to choose "Save" and type a name for the recording. Click "Save" once more to store the video on the computer.


Copying programs from a PVR does not delete the original recording from the PVR.


Turn off the PVR while connecting the audio cables.

Things You'll Need

  • Composite AV cable
  • Y-adaptor
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

James Clark began his career in 1985. He has written about electronics, appliance repair and outdoor topics for a variety of publications and websites. He has more than four years of experience in appliance and electrical repairs. Clark holds a bachelor's degree in political science.