HDPVR Support on the Mac (HDPVRCapture) - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 1194 Old 11-07-2008, 09:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalani View Post

Sidenote: Is it still possible to buy VisualHub anywhere, since the developer closed up shop?

Nope, but I have a copy if you'd like one.

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post #32 of 1194 Old 11-07-2008, 11:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stoth View Post

Untested as yet. I'd need to patch my AppleTV, or put up a small selection of clips for you to test. I suspect both would be useful.

- Steve

try this before you patch...

http://wiki.awkwardtv.org/wiki/How_t...ts_to_Apple_TV
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post #33 of 1194 Old 11-07-2008, 11:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndyLions View Post

My current setup is "HD Ready", as I am using an EyeTV250, connected to a dedicated DirecTV HD Receiver. At this stage, I'm obviously recording everything in SD, but at least I can record in the right aspect ratio - as I primarily record HD channels - which are downconverted to 480i before being sent to the EyeTV250 for conversion.

My understanding is that the EyeTV250 outputs in MPEG-2; is that correct?
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post #34 of 1194 Old 11-08-2008, 04:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelLAX View Post

My understanding is that the EyeTV250 outputs in MPEG-2; is that correct?

Yes it does. My current workflow is to Edit the recording using EyeTV's built-in editor, then convert using the Turbo264. The Turbo264 isn't the greatest, but it serves the purpose of doing the conversion without tying up my computer. For TV shows, the quality is adequate.

If I'm going for the absolute best quality, I'll actually not use the Turbo264 (it's a little soft, for some strange reason), but use VisualHub - which always comes out better. But that means converting overnight - not because it takes too long but because it ties up the uP of my 24" iMac - which is in use virtually 100% of daylight hours by someone in the family.

I'm looking forward to having recordings in MPEG4 to start with, which in theory should mean no transcoding step for my AppleTV. However, that's going to depend on the file coming off the HDPVR being compatible with AppleTV - which may not be the case.

I hate all this downtime in between drafts...(unidentified Lions loyalist '2004)
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post #35 of 1194 Old 11-08-2008, 11:58 PM
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Originally Posted by IndyLions View Post

Yes it does. My current workflow is to Edit the recording using EyeTV's built-in editor, then convert using the Turbo264. The Turbo264 isn't the greatest, but it serves the purpose of doing the conversion without tying up my computer. For TV shows, the quality is adequate.

Turbo.264 works well in conjunction with MPEG Streamclip for editing MPEG-2 then exporting as H.264 in standard definition, of course.

If I'm going for the absolute best quality, I'll actually not use the Turbo264 (it's a little soft, for some strange reason), but use VisualHub - which always comes out better. But that means converting overnight - not because it takes too long but because it ties up the uP of my 24" iMac - which is in use virtually 100% of daylight hours by someone in the family.

I was gifted a "broken" Mac Mini, which I was able to get working and use almost exclusively for transcoding purposes; either VisualHub or the new beta HandBrake 0.9.3 which will accept .TS HD-PVR output also.

I'm looking forward to having recordings in MPEG4 to start with, which in theory should mean no transcoding step for my AppleTV. However, that's going to depend on the file coming off the HDPVR being compatible with AppleTV - which may not be the case.

My experience is that the output of the HD-PVR, even when converted to MP4 will not play adequately on the AppleTV directly; either because of its use of CABAC or being 59.94fps or both.

However both VisualHub and HandBrake 0.9.3 will transcode to an AppleTV compliant H.264, which also can be edited with MPEG Streamclip.
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post #36 of 1194 Old 11-09-2008, 10:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelLAX View Post

My experience is that the output of the HD-PVR, even when converted to MP4 will not play adequately on the AppleTV directly; either because of its use of CABAC or being 59.94fps or both.

However both VisualHub and HandBrake 0.9.3 will transcode to an AppleTV compliant H.264, which also can be edited with MPEG Streamclip.

That looks to be the case. The 30 minute recording of Ugly Betty that I described earlier in the thread will not play on AppleTV, but it does play happily in Frontrow (and VLC and plex).

I think we're going to need a matrix of what's supported and what isn't. I'll put one of these together. It will show 'recorded file type' (with codec combinations) vs 'application support'.

Before then, this is my experience so far:

1. Any HDPVRCapture recording plays in VLC or Plex.

2. When you recording from the HDPVR and your target application is Frontrow, then the HDPVRCapture app will be capable of capturing and converting the native .ts file into a playable .mp4 inside quicktime/itunes/frontrow, assuming that the capture resolution is 720p and AAC 2 Channel encoding is used (not spdif). Most likely, this will also be editable by any quicktime aware app (final cut etc). After the recording was complete, the automatic conversion process took 60 seconds for me.

A host of other options also work if your prepared to transcode the content, I'm trying to avoid this where possible.

- Steve
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post #37 of 1194 Old 11-09-2008, 10:37 AM - Thread Starter
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I've added support for the IR Blaster hardware, it's working well for me (other than one small startup bug).

Once this is fixed I'm hoping to post a demo of the HDPVRCapture v1.0.0 sometime over the next couple of days. (It's currently a command line app, so it may not be suitable for everyone).

- Steve
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post #38 of 1194 Old 11-09-2008, 04:53 PM
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Thanks for the update, Steve. Are you planning to keep going after 5.1 audio support?
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post #39 of 1194 Old 11-09-2008, 07:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Will Collier View Post

Thanks for the update, Steve. Are you planning to keep going after 5.1 audio support?

The mp4 spec (until recently) didn't allow AC3 as a valid audio format. Assuming you could get AC3 inside an MP4 it's not clear what Quicktime would do with it.

A better approach might be to transcode the audio into AAC 5.1 which (apparently) the AppleTV can handle, and quicktime. More investigation is required.
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post #40 of 1194 Old 11-09-2008, 09:37 PM - Thread Starter
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An update on where I am: Here's the current command line usage. Unless I have new bugs then all of these features are working now:

HDPVRCapture v0.9.7 (Nov 10 2008 @ 00:09:11)
Copyright 2008, Steven Toth (url removed)

Usage: HDPVRCapture [-d] [-o outfile] [-t time (hh:mm:ss)] [-a AAC|AC3] [-b bitrate]
[-p peak_bitrate] [-s serial#] [-A audiomuxinput] [-V audiomuxinput] [-B bitrate_mode]
[-G GOP mode] [-l enablelights] [-z] [-m] [-Y] [-Z ] [-f] [-p

-a encode via RCA jacks AAC or AC3 2 channel format (default AAC)
-A RCA or SPDIF (default RCA)
-b capture bitrate in bps, Eg. 7500000 (default 5500000)
-B CBR or AVG (default AVG)
-f Overwrite the output file if it already exists (default do not overwrite)
-G SIMPLE, ADVANCED, ADVANCED_NO_IDR or SIMPLE_NO_IDR (default SIMPLE)
-l <0|1> enable lights = 1 (default off = 0)
-m Monitor recording via VLC (using app /Applications/VLC.app/Contents/MacOS/VLC) (default off)
-o (default based on date/time Eg. 2008.11.09-194041.ts)
-p capture peak bitrate in bps, Eg. 7500000 (default 20000000)
-P post processing options after recording is complete (default do not post process)
[1 = Convert 720p/AAC-2Ch to MP4+AAC-2Ch and add to iTunes]
[2 = Convert 720p/AC3-2Ch to MP4+AAC-2Ch and add to iTunes]
[3 = Convert 720p/AC3-5.1 to MP4+AAC-2Ch and add to iTunes]
-s , capture using a specific HDPVR device, Eg. 00A126AB (default - Use any)
-t , the capture duration, Eg. 01:30:00 1.5 hrs (default 00:00:10)
-V , COMPONENT, SVIDEO or COMPOSITE (default COMPONENT)
-Y Don't start the encoder (default - Encoder will start)
-z Enable Audio Boost (default off)
-Z IR Blaster configuration <"region,devicename,vendor,codeset,channel#,mindigits,needsent er,msdelaybetweenbuttons"> (default "North America,Cable Box,Sci-Atlanta Explorer 4200,74,707,4,1,400")

I can capture at 720p with either AAC-2.0 or AC3-2.0 via the RCA jacks, or AC3-5.1 via the SPDIF and mixdown to AAC-2.0 for MP4 support in Quicktime/Frontrow.

I'm going to post a demo version tonight to http://www.steventoth.net/hdpvrcapture. It will stop recording after a few minutes.

Known Issues:
* Occasionally disconnecting the HDPVR hangs the USB bus, put your system in and out of standby to resolve.
* Streaming to VLC takes place over multicast sockets, its broadcast to the nextwork so high traffic, switch to loopback.
* VLC (0.9.5) usually hangs and has to be manually killed after the stream has stop (VLC bug?).

If you're not intimidated by the command line then feel free to download and experiment. It's still got a few rough edges so your feedback is welcome. Please post all feedback here.

Any obvious bugs will be fixed before 1.0.0. The app will go on sale for $29.95. Given the target audience appears to be 6-8 people on this thread it's not a massive return on my engineering investment. For this you get ongoing support and the usual access to upgrades etc.

If the number of takers is low then it will forever remain a command line app. I'd like to build a nicely polished GUI for this so showing your support for the project will help make that happen.

Enjoy!

- Steve
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post #41 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 05:16 AM
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steve,

this is very cool...

so to recap you want us to put the folder "bin" in our Applications folder then run the ./HDPVRCapture from terminal.

can you post the command you are using with your setup..

example: ./HDPVRCapture -o /Users/jeff/Desktop -t 1:00:00 -a AAC -b 13000 -m

...

Also please post where we can donate to the app!

Jeff
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post #42 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 08:11 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dr01dy View Post

steve,

this is very cool...

so to recap you want us to put the folder "bin" in our Applications folder then run the ./HDPVRCapture from terminal.

Unzip the archive into your $HOME directory, so you end up with $HOME/bin/HDPVRCapture

Quote:
Originally Posted by dr01dy View Post

can you post the command you are using with your setup..

example: ./HDPVRCapture -o /Users/jeff/Desktop -t 1:00:00 -a AAC -b 13000 -m

# cd $HOME/bin
# ./HDPVRCapture -t 1:00:00 -a AAC -b 13000000 -m

This will work just fine, and the output file will be stored in the $HOME/bin dir with a name like 20081110_HHMMSS.ts

Run HDPVRCapture without any args (or with -h) to see all of the command line options:

# ./HDPVRCapture -h

- Steve
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post #43 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 09:06 AM
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cheers!!

I will try it after work and report back..
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post #44 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 10:49 AM
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I just tried it and seems to be working but the playback was very very choppy.

ran it on a macbookpro 2.53 15"

mobiledesk:bin jlloyd$ ./HDPVRCapture -o ./HDPVRCapture -t 1:00:00 -a AAC -b 13000000 -m

HDPVRCapture v0.9.7 (Nov 10 2008 @ 00:17:26)
Copyright 2008, Steven Toth (http://www.steventoth.net/hdpvrcapture)

Output filename: 2008.11.10-134422.ts
Duration: 1:00:00 (3600 seconds)
Monitor via VLC: Yes
Bitrate: 13000000 bps
Peak Bitrate: 20000000 bps
Device: 0 (default)
Audio Boost: Disabled (default)
Audio Encode: AAC
Audio Input Mux: RCA
Video Input Mux: COMPONENT
Bitrate Mode: AVG (default)
GOP Mode: SIMPLE (default)
Lights: OFF (default)
Ir Blaster:
Region:
Device:
Vendor:
Codeset:
Channel#: 707
Min digits to send: 4
Needs Enter: No (default)
Searching for HDPVR devices, vendor ID=0x2040 product ID=0x4900

Found HDPVR, serial number = 00A2602F
[00000001] main libvlc debug: VLC media player - version 0.9.5 Grishenko - (c) 1996-2008 the VideoLAN team
[00000001] main libvlc debug: libvlc was configured with ./configure '--enable-release' '--enable-update-check' '--with-macosx-sdk=/Developer/SDKs/MacOSX10.4u.sdk' 'PKG_CONFIG_PATH=:/opt/local/lib/pkgconfig'
[00000001] main libvlc debug: translation test: code is "C"
[00000001] main libvlc: Running vlc with the default interface. Use 'cvlc' to use vlc without interface.
Captured: 1622016 bytes, bitrate 12.38Mbps, stopping in 119 seconds [00000462] packetizer_mpeg4audio packetizer: AAC channels: 2 samplerate: 48000
Captured: 1671168 bytes, bitrate 12.75Mbps, stopping in 119 seconds libdvbpsi error (PSI decoder): TS discontinuity (received 11, expected 4) for PID 0
libdvbpsi error (PSI decoder): TS discontinuity (received 11, expected 4) for PID 256
Captured: 152633344 bytes, success.


I was using my Canon HV20 to capture 1080i...

I will try 720p when I am @ home.
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post #45 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 10:52 AM
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nevermind... I killed the bitrate I was using and it fixed everything..

I am seeing some too slow to use messages but the video seems to be good.

mobiledesk:bin jlloyd$ ./HDPVRCapture -o ./HDPVRCapture -t 1:00:00 -a AAC -m

HDPVRCapture v0.9.7 (Nov 10 2008 @ 00:17:26)
Copyright 2008, Steven Toth (http://www.steventoth.net/hdpvrcapture)

Output filename: 2008.11.10-135044.ts
Duration: 1:00:00 (3600 seconds)
Monitor via VLC: Yes
Bitrate: 5500000 bps
Peak Bitrate: 20000000 bps
Device: 0 (default)
Audio Boost: Disabled (default)
Audio Encode: AAC
Audio Input Mux: RCA
Video Input Mux: COMPONENT
Bitrate Mode: AVG (default)
GOP Mode: SIMPLE (default)
Lights: OFF (default)
Ir Blaster:
Region:
Device:
Vendor:
Codeset:
Channel#: 707
Min digits to send: 4
Needs Enter: No (default)
Searching for HDPVR devices, vendor ID=0x2040 product ID=0x4900

Found HDPVR, serial number = 00A2602F
[00000001] main libvlc debug: VLC media player - version 0.9.5 Grishenko - (c) 1996-2008 the VideoLAN team
[00000001] main libvlc debug: libvlc was configured with ./configure '--enable-release' '--enable-update-check' '--with-macosx-sdk=/Developer/SDKs/MacOSX10.4u.sdk' 'PKG_CONFIG_PATH=:/opt/local/lib/pkgconfig'
[00000001] main libvlc debug: translation test: code is "C"
[00000001] main libvlc: Running vlc with the default interface. Use 'cvlc' to use vlc without interface.
libdvbpsi error (PSI decoder): TS discontinuity (received 1, expected 5) for PID 0
libdvbpsi error (PSI decoder): TS discontinuity (received 1, expected 5) for PID 256
[00000422] avcodec decoder error: more than 5 seconds of late video -> dropping frame (computer too slow ?)
Captured: 65536 bytes, bitrate 0.50Mbps, stopping in 120 seconds [00000462] packetizer_mpeg4audio packetizer: AAC channels: 2 samplerate: 48000
Captured: 5652480 bytes, bitrate 4.79Mbps, stopping in 111 seconds [00000422] avcodec decoder error: more than 5 seconds of late video -> dropping frame (computer too slow ?)
Captured: 11763712 bytes, bitrate 4.99Mbps, stopping in 102 seconds [00000422] avcodec decoder error: more than 5 seconds of late video -> dropping frame (computer too slow ?)
Captured: 15007744 bytes, bitrate 4.77Mbps, stopping in 96 seconds [00000422] avcodec decoder error: more than 5 seconds of late video -> dropping frame (computer too slow ?)
Captured: 18677760 bytes, bitrate 4.91Mbps, stopping in 91 seconds [00000422] avcodec decoder error: more than 5 seconds of late video -> dropping frame (computer too slow ?)
Captured: 22200320 bytes, bitrate 4.84Mbps, stopping in 85 seconds [00000422] avcodec decoder error: more than 5 seconds of late video -> dropping frame (computer too slow ?)
Captured: 23937024 bytes, bitrate 4.94Mbps, stopping in 83 seconds HDPVR1212: Interrupted
Captured: 23953408 bytes, success.
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post #46 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 10:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dr01dy View Post

nevermind... I killed the bitrate I was using and it fixed everything..

I am seeing some too slow to use messages but the video seems to be good.

mobiledesk:bin jlloyd$ ./HDPVRCapture -o ./HDPVRCapture -t 1:00:00 -a AAC -m

^^^ -o ./HDPVRCapture, that probably just overwrote your HDPVRCapture application, unless you made a typo.

...

Quote:
Originally Posted by dr01dy View Post

Captured: 23937024 bytes, bitrate 4.94Mbps, stopping in 83 seconds HDPVR1212: Interrupted
Captured: 23953408 bytes, success.

Yeah, you need some horse power if you want to preview while capturing using VLC.

Also, remember to capture 720p from your STB if you want to convert this in MP4 format.
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post #47 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 02:39 PM
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Okay, first test results... took a few tries to get the syntax right. I finally got a working .TS file with full 5.1 on VLC via SPDIF (obviously not a Quicktime-happy file, but everything does work this way). One oddity, the recording from 720p source (DirecTV HR21-700) has black bars around the top and sides in the VLC viewer, but they go away when set to "Full Screen" (which makes sense, as the TV is higher resolution than 720p). I'm still having trouble getting all options to work, for instance, even when I set -t 00:00:15, I still get a two-minute recording (defaulting to the demo limitation). Probably my *NIX deficiencies showing up. Here's the syntax in a test I just ran:

./HDPRVCapture -t 00:00:15 -A SPDIF -b 9000000 -P 3

The post-processed file plays back fine in QT.

Steve, can you put in an option to not delete the intermediate files after post-processing, and another to skip adding content to iTunes?

With no offense to Steve, this is kind of an ugly baby, but it's a WORKING ugly baby, which is a hell of an improvement over booting in XP...
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post #48 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 02:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Will Collier View Post

Okay, first test results... took a few tries to get the syntax right. I finally got a working .TS file with full 5.1 on VLC via SPDIF (obviously not a Quicktime-happy file, but everything does work this way). One oddity, the recording from 720p source (DirecTV HR21-700) has black bars around the top and sides in the VLC viewer, but they go away when set to "Full Screen" (which makes sense, as the TV is higher resolution than 720p). I'm still having trouble getting all options to work, for instance, even when I set -t 00:00:15, I still get a two-minute recording (defaulting to the demo limitation). Probably my *NIX deficiencies showing up. Here's the syntax in a test I just ran:

./HDPRVCapture -t 00:00:15 -A SPDIF -b 9000000 -P 3

The post-processed file plays back fine in QT.

Steve, can you put in an option to not delete the intermediate files after post-processing, and another to skip adding content to iTunes?

With no offense to Steve, this is kind of an ugly baby, but it's a WORKING ugly baby, which is a hell of an improvement over booting in XP...

Hmm. My mistake. I default the runtime to 120 seconds, not thinking that you might actually want to run it for less during testing. Doh! Sorry. If enough people complain I'll put up a 0.9.8 build tonight with a minor fix for that (allowing less that 120 second captures).

If you're capturing 720p with AC3 5.1, -P3 option should work well for you. After your recording TS has finished, it will create a second file with the .mp4 extension with downmixed audio that will play happily inside quicktime. Check for that second file and play it in Quicktime, it would work fine. It should also create a log file, and automatically add the content into itunes.

- Steve
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post #49 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 03:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stoth View Post

Hmm. My mistake. I default the runtime to 120 seconds, not thinking that you might actually want to run it for less during testing. Doh! Sorry. If enough people complain I'll put up a 0.9.8 build tonight with a minor fix for that (allowing less that 120 second captures).

If you're capturing 720p with AC3 5.1, -P3 option should work well for you. After your recording TS has finished, it will create a second file with the .mp4 extension with downmixed audio that will play happily inside quicktime. Check for that second file and play it in Quicktime, it would work fine. It should also create a log file, and automatically add the content into itunes.

- Steve

No, no, I want to NOT import the content to iTunes. I'd just as soon skip that step if possible.

The conversion with P -3 does work fine, the .mp4 file is good, but for tinkering I'd like to have access to the demuxed elementary streams you're pulling out during post processing.

Thanks...
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post #50 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 03:42 PM
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Okay, I have a procedure here to get an unmodified recording from HDPVRCapture into a .mov container with 5.1 AC3 audio. This requires QuickTime Pro.

First make a recording with Steve's app, with SPDIF input and the -P 3 post processing step. Open the resulting .mp4 file in Quicktime Player, select Show Movie Properties, click on the H.264 (video) file and then click on the Extract button. The video from your recording will open in a new Quicktime window.

Extract the AC3 audio track from the original .TS file of your original recording. I used the mplayer command line app, syntax is:

./mplayer -dumpaudio -dumpfile [new filename].ac3 [original recording].ts

Open the AC3 file with Quicktime, then Edit > Select All, and Edit > Copy.

Go to the Quicktime window with the extracted video, and Edit > Add To Movie. Check sync (if you're paranoid). File > Save As a self-contained movie with the filename of your choice.

[NOTE: Corrected, last step originally said "extracted audio" by mistake, and added Save As self-contained movie; otherwise the AC3 file remains as a dependency.]

You now have a .mov file that should play in just about anything.
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post #51 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 03:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Will Collier View Post

Okay, I have a procedure here to get an unmodified recording from HDPVRCapture into a .mov container with 5.1 AC3 audio. This requires QuickTime Pro.

First make a recording with Steve's app, with SPDIF input and the -P 3 post processing step. Open the resulting .mp4 file in Quicktime Player, select Show Movie Properties, click on the H.264 (video) file and then click on the Extract button. The video from your recording will open in a new Quicktime window.

Extract the AC3 audio track from the original .TS file of your original recording. I used the mplayer command line app, syntax is:

./mplayer -dumpaudio -dumpfile [new filename].ac3 [original recording].ts

Open the AC3 file with Quicktime, then Edit > Select All, and Edit > Copy.

Go to the Quicktime window with the extracted audio, and Edit > Add To Movie. Check sync (if you're paranoid). Save with the filename of your choice.

You now have a .mov file that should play in just about anything.

I can probably automate this with AppleScript as profile option 4 if this is something your interested in.
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post #52 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 04:23 PM
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I can probably automate this with AppleScript as profile option 4 if this is something your interested in.

Definitely. This is an ideal final output as far as I'm concerned.

UPDATE: MPEG Streamclip edits the .mov file with no problems. Good sync before and after.
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post #53 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 06:07 PM
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I'd like just to be able to record shows and have them in my iTunes library with metadata ready to play on Apple TV. I use an El Gate Hybrid w/QAM for this, but I can't get all the channels in HD. I'd buy an HDPVR if I could use it this way.
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post #54 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 07:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Definitely. This is an ideal final output as far as I'm concerned.

UPDATE: MPEG Streamclip edits the .mov file with no problems. Good sync before and after.

I've written some AppleScript to do this, it works well.

I'll merge it and some other fixes in the next couple of hours as another profile option.
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post #55 of 1194 Old 11-10-2008, 10:11 PM
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First off, thanks dr01dy for pointing out this thread to the folks on the elgato forum that have been on the edge of their seats for what feels like eternity for that mythical eyeTV beta with Hauppauge HD PVR 1212 support. We were all on the verge of giving up on HD for Mac but this gives us hope.

To answer the original question of this thread "Who wants HDPVR support on the Mac?": For those Mac users who have figured out that their current encoders and software are do not do HD: EVERYONE!!! (and many would pay for it)

It seems like this project has some good momentum and isn't at risk of being abandoned so I'm going to go out on a limb and offer this:

For what it's worth, those with DVR/encoders today have already come to expect very mature and feature-complete software. People w/o computers pay for a Tivo device then a monthly subscription, but get hooked on it like crack. Those with computers have software suites like eyeTV (Mac), BeyondTV (Windows) and mythTV (Linux) which go beyond the capabilities of the Tivo by allowing you to store, export and stream your shows.

I'm afraid in this environment I can't see a lot of people paying for a solution that only captures video and plays it back using third party software, even if it "just works". The AppleTV tie-in is interesting, but without the ability to skip through (or edit out) commercials *easily* it's probably not a final solution. What's more, this solution requires even more hardware than a basic cable box -> DVR/encoder -> Computer -> Display

DVR time shifting via remote control, scheduled recording and the like have revolutionized TV to the point where I can't imagine sitting down to watch it any other way. This experience is so compelling that I deal with my HD programming being converted to NTSC (*gasp*) by my eyeTV 200 because there isn't a proper HD solution available for Mac right now.

It seems like there is *huge* potential here--not as a standalone product but as an essential bit of functionality for a larger software suite in desperate need of it. Maybe some of this code/your time can be sold to elgato to help them finish what they can't. Or maybe this could be turned into an add-on or be modified to be used in the OS X version of mythTV.

Many people have already donated more $ to NeoOffice.org for their free alternative to Office than they've ever given to M$ because it's a complete solution that they want to see succeed. I think that many Mac users would feel the same about a full and proper HD DVR solution.

So all of this ranting to say that this looks like a beautiful, beautiful thing being written here but I wouldn't consider "the moon", per the first page of this thread, an impossible goal -- getting there would just require the right partnerships.

Cheers.
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post #56 of 1194 Old 11-11-2008, 03:36 AM
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I've written some AppleScript to do this, it works well.

I'll merge it and some other fixes in the next couple of hours as another profile option.

Outstanding. Thanks.
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post #57 of 1194 Old 11-11-2008, 06:45 AM - Thread Starter
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First off, thanks dr01dy for pointing out this thread to the folks on the elgato forum that have been on the edge of their seats for what feels like eternity for that mythical eyeTV beta with Hauppauge HD PVR 1212 support. We were all on the verge of giving up on HD for Mac but this gives us hope.



Quote:
Originally Posted by strayduck View Post

To answer the original question of this thread "Who wants HDPVR support on the Mac?": For those Mac users who have figured out that their current encoders and software are do not do HD: EVERYONE!!! (and many would pay for it)

The rationale behind my original question was pretty simple, was the Mac market going to be big enough for me to justify spending my time? Seriously, I still don't know he answer to that. All I can say so far is that 6-8 people have 'shown an interest', that's spectacularly low to be honest.

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Originally Posted by strayduck View Post

It seems like this project has some good momentum and isn't at risk of being abandoned so I'm going to go out on a limb and offer this:

For what it's worth, those with DVR/encoders today have already come to expect very mature and feature-complete software. People w/o computers pay for a Tivo device then a monthly subscription, but get hooked on it like crack. Those with computers have software suites like eyeTV (Mac), BeyondTV (Windows) and mythTV (Linux) which go beyond the capabilities of the Tivo by allowing you to store, export and stream your shows.

.. that's why I use MythTV on a Linux box as my DVR.

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I'm afraid in this environment I can't see a lot of people paying for a solution that only captures video and plays it back using third party software, even if it "just works". The AppleTV tie-in is interesting, but without the ability to skip through (or edit out) commercials *easily* it's probably not a final solution. What's more, this solution requires even more hardware than a basic cable box -> DVR/encoder -> Computer -> Display

I agree with you, but I'm not initially pitching a fully fledged DVR app. That will only come if the community starts to show some serious interest, right now not enough interest has been shown - but it's early days. That being said one of the reasons for the command line app right now is that one user wants to integrate this with MythTV for the Mac. While a commandline app is nothing more than a trinket, a useful oddity it demonstrates to the community a few things:

1) I'm interested in spending my time making the project happen and proving that the device is capable on the Mac.
2) It allows other technical users to begin intergrating this with their custom DVR solutions. One specific users wants to use AppleTV's as a mythtv backend capture solution, a GUI is useless to him.
3) It gives the reasonably technical user a chance to try out the app, see what the software playback quality is like on the mac.

From the windows world I know A LOT of people who never playback HDPVR content on the PC, instead it's played back on PS3's, UPnP extended and various other devices (popcorn hour).

You have to make the distinct between the HDPVR as a LiveTV device or a Capture device. If you look at the actual support under windows you'll see that it operates at its best purely as a capture only device, the LiveTV expeirence to laggy and slow, 10-15 second channel changes.


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Originally Posted by strayduck View Post

DVR time shifting via remote control, scheduled recording and the like have revolutionized TV to the point where I can't imagine sitting down to watch it any other way. This experience is so compelling that I deal with my HD programming being converted to NTSC (*gasp*) by my eyeTV 200 because there isn't a proper HD solution available for Mac right now.

If a great DVR exists, but it's not on my platform of choice I'll still use it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by strayduck View Post

It seems like there is *huge* potential here--not as a standalone product but as an essential bit of functionality for a larger software suite in desperate need of it. Maybe some of this code/your time can be sold to elgato to help them finish what they can't. Or maybe this could be turned into an add-on or be modified to be used in the OS X version of mythTV.

Well, hopefully this thread will ignite that 'Huge potential', it's not evident yet, but - again - it's early days.

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Many people have already donated more $ to NeoOffice.org for their free alternative to Office than they've ever given to M$ because it's a complete solution that they want to see succeed. I think that many Mac users would feel the same about a full and proper HD DVR solution.

Quote:
Originally Posted by strayduck View Post

So all of this ranting to say that this looks like a beautiful, beautiful thing being written here but I wouldn't consider "the moon", per the first page of this thread, an impossible goal -- getting there would just require the right partnerships.

Cheers.

Thanks strayduck, seriously I'm not sure how to read your comments, as either positive, negative or as a mixed bag. All I can really discuss is the current app, it's rationale (as a technology stepping stone to gauge the size/value of the market) and perhaps give you a few ideas of what I'd like to see next:

1) A GUI, something similar to Handbrake in terms of a UI, but a little more user friendly. More artwork, hiding the technical features into a set of profiles.

2) MythTV backend support for the command line app, or something close to it. Myth is a fantastic DVR solution in my humble opinion.

3) A generic TV capture framework API, and a minor re-write of the command line app to support than generic framework, so third party apps like Plex / XBMC / Center Stage can begin to add TV support to their products. Why? Because TV apps on the Mac will not flourish (as they have on other platforms) unless TV Tuner vendors get behind a decent TV API for the platform, and third party developers start to support it. As much as I love Apple, this lack of sanctioned support is glaring.

HDPVRCapture is a partnership with the Mac community. I'm showing my support and gauging the size and passion of the market. Ultimately, if the community isn't their then I'll go back to writing TV drivers for Linux in my spare time and remain forever frustrated that my platform of choice (Mac) remains 3rd in the land of TV Tuners.

strayduck, I'm forever hopeful that this will evolve into something useful, and I completely support your last comment about doing this in partnership - that's exactly the track I've tried to take so far.

Unrelated: Let's not derail this thread into the relative politics of Mac vs Windows vs PC as a TV tuner platform. If you want that discussion I'm happy to have it, but can we do that in another thread - so the details of the HDPVRCapture app don't get lost here?

Thanks for you honest and details response.

- Steve
Ps. This is a quick reply before I head for work, typo's may be abound, your forgiveness is assumed .
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post #58 of 1194 Old 11-11-2008, 09:03 AM
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Steve, I don't want anyone to misconstrue this as a lack of support for your efforts.

Quote:


All I can say so far is that 6-8 people have 'shown an interest', that's spectacularly low to be honest.

I think it's important to remember that at this point, very few Mac users--in the Mac-using community at large--do "Mac home theater." Only a handful of these people have bothered to purchase this Hauppauge device because they knew they couldn't stay within OS X to use it. (The vast majority of us aren't going anywhere near MythTV, Linux, Windows, etc.) The few who have bought it are a very very small subset already aware of the limitations of EyeTV devices, who already are pretty comfortable across platforms and probably have already recorded from their STBs over firewire, for instance.

This is not your audience, initially or ultimately. You're pitching to an inherently small clique. Regardless of testing the waters here at AVS, which is a very elite forum in the grand scheme of things, a massive amount of raising awareness also has to happen to 1) get the word out elsewhere and 2) re-condition Mac users who for years now have been told they can't record anything in HD except the national networks. Once word gets out to other online forums that there's now a new and affordable way to record HD over component in OS X you might see more than just geek momentum build, at least I hope you do.

Firewire is dead, essentially. El Gato and EyeTV are limited, inherently, and that's not gonna change. That leaves the Hauppauge and component as the only exciting option for growth. If you release an app with a GUI that works with the Hauppauge you'll have the Macworld editors all over you, which means general Mac users will read about you. That's how you get the $$$.

Quote:


Ultimately, if the community isn't there then I'll go back to writing TV drivers for Linux in my spare time and remain forever frustrated that my platform of choice (Mac) remains 3rd in the land of TV Tuners.[/QUOTE

You may want to revise your expectations and timetable a bit. I'm fairly confident a command line-only capture utility won't inspire the faithful into donating $30. It certainly won't get folks to buy the Hauppauge on a whim. Mac users expect a GUI. I bet 90% of Mac users have never opened Terminal or know what a command line means. So if you're hoping to reach a certain dollar amount initially before you even begin building the GUI, you better set the threshold pretty darn low, revise how you plan to grow this or re-evaluate the "partnership" you're offering, i.e. what you expect from the Mac community, and how you plan to justify your time and expenses. I'd recommend this last option.

My sense: it's unreasonable to expect the masses to buy the device AND spend $30 on your software for a "proof of concept" coupled with a promise of future development IF some vague donation amount is eventually reached. Until there's a GUI for capture and conversion, even a rudimentary one, coupled with reports of satisfied veteran Mac home theater users playing these files back in Front Row, I don't think you'll gain enough traction to make you happy.

Better approach: stop trying to demonstrate anything to the community at this point until you have a GUI version that creates a file a Mac user can play back with Front Row. Spend all your time achieving this, then partner with the community moving forward based on the goodwill you've already achieved. (Remember, Mac users are very loyal and willing to pay.) Basically, stop allowing yourself to get diverted by the technical users who want to begin intergrating this with their custom DVR solutions and specific users who "want to use AppleTV's as a mythtv backend capture solution" unless you NEED them to realize your vision.

If you don't need them, if you have all the talent you need, go for the masses--but keep that thread going to get feedback from the advanced geek-type user, too.

You don't want to aim for "the reasonably technical user," you want to sell your $30 app to the not-that-technical, not-that-patient Mac user, who has a cable box and 1) didn't realize they had any option besides EyeTV and 2) didn't realize that they could record all sorts of HD programming over component with the Hauppauge. That means your first offering has a GUI, and can capture and convert for playback with quicktime/itunes/frontrow. That's it. That gets them hooked and gets you publicity which you can leverage into more $$$. Promise conversion for Apple TV later as a free upgrade if it's too much to incorporate initially.

Anyway, I'd like to see you succeed, and wanted to support you, even though it might not be the support you expected.
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post #59 of 1194 Old 11-11-2008, 11:59 AM - Thread Starter
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Steve, I don't want anyone to misconstrue this as a lack of support for your efforts.

Not at all, thank you for this consideration.

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Anyway, I'd like to see you succeed, and wanted to support you, even though it might not be the support you expected.

chefklc, your words have been received loud and clear. I realize that as a small standalone utility this has a limited (technical) user base. I wanted to 'feel' my way into the technical side of the community and I've had some success it. However, it's not until a credible GUI is available that wide-stream acceptance would be possible.

I disagree on a couple of your comments slightly (firewire and Myth related), but those didn't detract from your overarching message and aren't worth side-tracking the thread on here.

Very good feedback, thank you immensely.

In terms of the app's future? Let me chew on that for a while.

Kind regards,

Steve
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post #60 of 1194 Old 11-11-2008, 12:58 PM
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chefklc, your words have been received loud and clear. I realize that as a small standalone utility this has a limited (technical) user base. I wanted to 'feel' my way into the technical side of the community and I've had some success it. However, it's not until a credible GUI is available that wide-stream acceptance would be possible.

Just to amplify a bit, chefklc put his finger on the the matter of why there are only a handful of guys in this market right now--the doggone product has been "No Macs Need Apply" until, er, yesterday. Only a few lunatics were willing to drop a couple hundred bucks on a box that isn't even supposed to work with their computer.

Let the word get out that you CAN record HD on a Mac (with a nice, pretty GUI, right, Steve ), from just about any source, and the user base can't help but grow.
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