The Best Answer
That partially depends on your existing TV setup (e.g whether you have cable TV, if you have a DVR, etc). If you have cable TV already, you can record live TV shows from your TV to your iPad using a recording device called iRecord. The way it works is simple: connect the iRecord device to your TV, and when the TV show you want to record is broadcasting on your TV, you plug your iPad into iRecord and press 'Record' and it will record your TV show. Your videos of your TV recording will now be accessible on your iPad, no computer is necessary. This device is really handy because it's a universal recorder, so you can record from any video or audio source (cable TV shows, movies playing on your DVD player, Apple TV rentals) onto any device with a hard drive such as a computer, iPhone, or external hard drive. It comes with a remote control which is great so you don't have to get up all the time to start and stop your recordings. So if you plan on doing a lot of TV recording, this is the device I'd recommend. You can get it on Amazon here for $230.
To record TV directly on your iPad, you need either an EyeTV tuner for your computer (my recommendation) or a special DVR that supports remote recording via the iPad, such as a Slingbox or MOXI. There's usually an accompanying iPad app that works with the DVR box that will let you watch and record TV shows. Here's a few examples:
If you have a MOXI HD DVR connected to your home TV:
Download the MOXI Remote app onto your iPad and you can record and watch TV shows on your iPad. The shows will sync to your DVR at home so you can access your recordings on either device. One nice thing is that you can also schedule recordings ahead of time, up to 12 days.
You can use the SlingPlayer app to watch and record TV on your iPad. It also syncs with your Slingbox at home, so all of your recordings are available on both the iPad and at home.
If you have TiVo, you can use the free Vulkano Player app for recording TV to your TiVo and watch it on your iPad.
I'm sure there's others, but all of them require you to have cable TV and a special DVR. They're pretty expensive to buy (over $200), so the easiest and cheapest alternative is to get an EyeTV tuner for $145 that plugs into your Mac or PC, and then get their $5 EyeTV iPad app . Then you can record and watch live TV on your iPad wherever you are and have your recordings automatically synced to your home computer. You don't need cable TV or even a TV at all! From what I've seen, the EyeTV app streams videos much smoother than the SlingPlayer. Here's what it looks like:
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