Anatomy of V4L-DVB devices
PCI Cards with onboard MPEG Decoder
The Onboard Decoder makes these cards somewhat expensive.
In a SetTopBox the Frontend directly feeds the built-in hostprocessor (usually with onchip MPEG Decoder). These processors are mostly based on embedded ARM-, MIPS-, PowerPC-Cores with additional peripheral units like i2c-, IDE-, network-, Smartcardcontrollers, Demultiplexers, Decoders, Audio- and Videointerface.
STBs with interface to the PC
Have an integrated embedded processor with MPEG2 Decoder and are able to work standalone. You can connect your PC to record and play back DVB transmissions on your TV.