from everything I'm reading the only way to interface the pci tuners is to have them emulate the id/cam/smartcard of the valid receiver you have and supposedly this is quazi-legal due to it being non-authorized hardware. Since you seem to have experience how stable is the video from this?
Honestly I'm a total newb when it comes to satellite television and it's inclusion in a htpc system...so to me there is a steep learning curve. You mind pm'ing me your email so I can chat with you off-forum?
I have some experience about this.
In sweden the main system is based around DVB-T (we have no analog TV anymore) with about 4-5 million subscribers.
We must pay according to our law to be able to access freeview (only 3 channels an 4 radio channels) the rest have to be payed for using a subscription scheme.
On the other hand there is DVB-S, tv1000 & canal digital that can be used also.
I use DVB-T with one original card put into my Dreambox (a german linux based reciever for DVB-T/S/C).
The main features of this reciever is that it decode pay channels, can record to a CIFS/NFS share, local harddrive etc.
The main advantage this box have is that it is possible to share the smartcard to other recievers or linux/win based machines over tcp/ip.
My solution is built around LMCE and sasc-ng. Sasc-ng can connect to my dreambox using newcamd and then decode DVT-T streams.
Sasc-ng create a virtual tuner that VDR or MythTV is configured to use.
This mean that myth or vdr does not know anything about the encrypted channels(they see channels as unencrypted) and do not need any special patching and so on to work.
At the moment I cannot get mythtv to work stable in LMCE. Probably because the of remote command solution (commands sent through sockets) implemented in LMCE to control mythtv. My hope is for VDR at the moment.