HDPVR Support on the Mac (HDPVRCapture) - Page 31 - AVS Forum
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post #901 of 1194 Old 07-24-2009, 06:23 PM
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I just received a second unit with firmware version 1.5.6 installed. I was still getting intermittent stops & starts during the recording process (causing glitches in the resulting file), so I decided to create a new account on my Mac that was free of any odd installs that I have on my primary account within Mac OS X 10.5.

Anyway, I seem to be getting more consistent recordings by using the dedicated account that doesn't have anything extra installed.

One quick question, I'm trying to capture a blu-ray of Dark City that only has a DTS HD 7.1 soundtrack and I'm not able to capture the audio via optical. Anyone know why that is?
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post #902 of 1194 Old 07-25-2009, 11:19 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toho View Post

One quick question, I'm trying to capture a blu-ray of Dark City that only has a DTS HD 7.1 soundtrack and I'm not able to capture the audio via optical. Anyone know why that is?

We'll need a little more detail from you on what exactly happens.
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post #903 of 1194 Old 07-28-2009, 10:26 AM
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Thanks Steven,
After researching it a bit more on my own, I ended up grabbing the audio via the left & right analog audio channels. If I'm not mistaken, the Hauppauge unit can't handle grabbing the DTS audio over the digital optical connection – only Dolby Digital.
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post #904 of 1194 Old 07-29-2009, 08:07 AM - Thread Starter
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v2.5.0

A small number of people have been reporting jerky / glitchy video with this build when capturing at bitrates > 8000kbps. Sometimes intermittent but sometimes unavoidable.

I'm looking into the bug report.

In the meantime if you need a workaround I suggest you de-install v2.5.0 and re-install build v2.4.1 from here http://www.steventoth.net/blog/products/hdpvr-capture/
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post #905 of 1194 Old 07-30-2009, 06:43 AM
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Yesterday I received the HD-PVR I ordered from Dell (on Sunday). Steve, I placed the order for your software last night so I'm looking forward to putting it to good use this weekend!

I'll let you know if I run into any troubles.

-Jeremy
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post #906 of 1194 Old 07-30-2009, 07:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremyandnell View Post

Yesterday I received the HD-PVR I ordered from Dell (on Sunday). Steve, I placed the order for your software last night so I'm looking forward to putting it to good use this weekend!

I'll let you know if I run into any troubles.

-Jeremy

Many thanks Jeremy, welcome aboard! Your license key email went out this morning.
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post #907 of 1194 Old 08-01-2009, 08:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi,

v2.5.2 has been released and is available for immediate download. Existing users will be automatically offered this new release when you next launch HDPVRCapture. This is a recommend upgrade for all users.

This version fixes the major video glitch people have been experiencing with v2.5.0 and sustained encoder bitrates of >8Mbps on certain platforms.

As always, full details and release notes are available via the blog:

http://www.steventoth.net/blog/

Many thanks to everyone that reported the bug.

- Steve
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post #908 of 1194 Old 08-01-2009, 03:29 PM
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Thanks Steve!

I was one who was having some issues, but this update runs much smoother. Steve worked with me through PM's and email throughout the process to make sure my problem would be taken care of.

Just wanted to put in the thread how happy I am with the support Steve has provided. Bravo Steve for your hard work and support! Thank you! :-)
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post #909 of 1194 Old 08-02-2009, 05:00 PM - Thread Starter
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@Poster, you're welcome!
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post #910 of 1194 Old 08-05-2009, 12:02 PM
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Well, I had a quite a busy weekend with the PVR. I had a DVR full of shows for my kids I wanted to copy and Steve's software was just what I needed. Here are my thoughts around my first impression:

The video quality is great - I first set the bit rate pretty high (10-11) at a constant rate. The quality was good but the files were pretty large (1GB for 25 minutes). I turned it down to the 'Best' variable setting and I've not noticed a decline in picture quality, but I have cut the file sizes in half (720p programs are now 500-600MB per 25 minutes).

The HDPVRCapture is easy to use and performs well - I had not trouble figuring out the preferences, video settings, audio settings, etc. Nice job with the layout, Steve!

The IR Blaster was pretty tricky with my STB (SA8300HD) - I finally found a spot that would work, but it took 20 minutes of playing around with the blaster as well as the delay between signaling rate.

Scheduling could be easier and/or more reliable. I scheduled two programs to record daily (M-F) back to back (one at 8am, one at 8:30am for 29 minutes each so there's no overlap). The first show recorded fine, the second program did not change the channel (as it should have).

The PVR does not have the stamina for prolonged use. After recording consistently through the day on Saturday and Sunday, The software would report an error at the place were it would normally report the video signal. I would have to turn the PVR off and back on again before it would work again. It could be overheating but it was placed in a well-ventilated place so that would be surprising.

What was most satisfying was that I was able to get ALL of my recordings that I wanted to 'preserve' off the DVR and free up space. The software was truly easy to use and effective at taking what would be enormous data files and converting the stream to something far smaller.

The only downside to the whole experience is that I don't think this setup (as-is) can be used in replacement of my HD-DVR (which was my original goal). But I will whole-heartedly recommend it for use as a complement for preserving programs manually as needed.
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post #911 of 1194 Old 08-06-2009, 06:19 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks jeremyandnell, a great review and I'm glad you've finally opened up all of that space on your STB DVR! Record away!

It took me a while to get my IR blaster positioned on the SA4250HD correctly too. That being said I had this positional issue with all of my hardware blaster solutions that I've tried with this box. I'm not sure whether this is a cable or directional thing. A giant blob of sticky tape worked wonders for me.

Do these IR back-to-back failures happened every time for you?

- Steve
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post #912 of 1194 Old 08-07-2009, 07:14 PM
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I was wondering if Steve or anyone else can help me with a couple of things?

When recording and viewing the output in VLC, is there anything that can be done to remove the stuttering in VLC? I assume this occurs as it tries to keep up with the recording, but maybe I am wrong?

Would I need something like EyeTV to view recored content in real time?

How does the Titan TV program guide work with the HDPVR? The other night I had a recording in my queue, but it never recorded. It actually started, but recorded 0 MB of output. Now when I add an event, it errors out saying the event channel cannot be found or something along those lines.

Any idea what I am doing wrong? Thanks!
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post #913 of 1194 Old 08-08-2009, 02:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poster View Post

I was wondering if Steve or anyone else can help me with a couple of things?

When recording and viewing the output in VLC, is there anything that can be done to remove the stuttering in VLC? I assume this occurs as it tries to keep up with the recording, but maybe I am wrong?

Would I need something like EyeTV to view recored content in real time?

How does the Titan TV program guide work with the HDPVR? The other night I had a recording in my queue, but it never recorded. It actually started, but recorded 0 MB of output. Now when I add an event, it errors out saying the event channel cannot be found or something along those lines.

Any idea what I am doing wrong? Thanks!

Please send me the titantv.tvpi file that you used to create the 0MB recording, it may be a bug. I should be able to repro it and fix it from that.

HDPVRCapture is really a scheduling and recording solution, VLC monitoring isn't designed for to give you a TV experience. VLC certainly does work nicely on a beefy Mac, if you have the horsepower.

Regards,

- Steve
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post #914 of 1194 Old 08-09-2009, 12:52 PM
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Hi Steve,
It might not be an issue with that file. Do I need the IR blaster setup for scheduled recordings to work? I wasn't before, but in trying now I have no idea how to set it up?

I have it over the STB sensor, but have no idea how I would know if it works. The remote has never worked. With the IR blaster hooked up should I be able to change channels on my STB with the HDPVR remote? I assume the IR blaster is needed for the scheduled recordings to work in getting my STB to the right channel for a scheduled recording. I know this was meant to use on a Windows system so the manual wont help. Is there another guide out there that can help for setting this up IR blaster on Mac?

Other odd issues. In zap2it channel guide, I am dragging and dropping shows. If the show is 1 PM, once dragged in the HDPVR reads it as 1 AM, also sees it as the wrong channel. Seems to want to default to channel 61. I am thinking it is just reading the schedule when showing show info, but any idea on why it is doing this or if you have heard of this happening?

Regarding VLC, it doesn't stutter when recording SD content. I have the 2.26 Ghz Mini with 4 GB of RAM. Is that not powerful enough to have VLC playback without stuttering? Does yours stutter when recording HD content?

Sorry for all of the questions. I am trying to hang in there, but still feel I can do better with my recordings. My HD ones are still not as nice as the ones I see on your site or elsewhere. Maybe I am too much of a noob with this stuff, but I have invested lots of time and money into this so I just want to make sure I know everything I can about it.

If you or anyone else can provide any help, I would really appreciate it. Thanks for sticking with me.
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post #915 of 1194 Old 08-09-2009, 01:24 PM
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Hi Steve,
Well maybe I am getting somewhere with the IR blaster. I scheduled a recording and it talked to my STB. The problem is that it chose the wrong channel. I tried to record the Firestone golf tourney on CBS HD which is channel 505. Well even though the schedule said to put it to that channel, it changed it to channel 5 which is the CBS SD channel. In doing this the recording gets hosed and it records a bunch of garbled screen.

I tried to upload the .tvpi file, but it said it was invalid. I can send it through to your FTP, but out of respect I want to make sure it is OK with you before doing so. Thanks.
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post #916 of 1194 Old 08-12-2009, 12:45 PM
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I experienced the same issue when trying to configure my setup (I would schedule channel 255 and it would change it to 5). What worked for me was to increase the lag between ir commands. I'm not a home right now, but I think I increased the lag time in the preferences close to the max. Give that a try!
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post #917 of 1194 Old 08-12-2009, 12:49 PM
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Steve-

Here's a suggestion for version 3 of Capture...it's an echo of another post a ways back:

How about build in the FW control of the STB (like in AVCNoodle) to change the channel, wake up the STB, etc. into Capture? That way we don't have to play with a IR blaster cord in front of the DVR (I don't trust my kids not to knock it off). The FW cable would hide nicely behind the STB and 'should' be 100% reliable, plus it's nice to leave the STB off for scheduled recordings and let the software turn it on.

Just a suggestion...I know you're busy. Keep up the good work!

Jeremy
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post #918 of 1194 Old 08-16-2009, 12:37 PM
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Thanks jeremyandnell, I will try that out.

I haven't recorded in a while as I still am not getting recordings that are of a quality I would like. I know Steve is swamped, so I am kindly waiting to see what he thinks. I am wondering if anyone else can share their experiences in creating recordings? I have never been able to get a quality recording without issues.

V2.5 fixed a big issue for me, but my recordings still have flashes or glitches which reduce the quality. Sports seem to record really fast and blurry as well. I have never been able to replicate recordings like I see on Steve's website.

Maybe it is my STB, but do others who make recordings of TV shows and sporting events get quality recordings as if you were watching on your DVR or am I aiming too high?

So far this has been a frustrating and to an extent a money & time wasting experience. If anyone can share their insights or experiences, I would really appreciate it. That way I can decide if I want to keep working on this or spend my time elsewhere. Thank you!
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post #919 of 1194 Old 08-20-2009, 03:01 PM
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poster: Try testing your hd-pvr with a PC. I am using mine with a Win XP PC and the quality of the recordings that I am getting with my directv sat box is fantastic!
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post #920 of 1194 Old 08-21-2009, 09:51 AM
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Poster...a couple of thoughts:

1. While I haven't seen your video streams, I've always experienced a little flashing and studdering with any video I've watched through the VGA port on my 40" Sammy LCD. Also, I thought the colors were a bit dull compared to the STB, which is connected to the same set via HDMI. So I went out last weekend and bought a DVI to HDMI adapter and - Wow! - what a difference! The video is smooth, not jerky, and the colors are just as vibrant as if watching the video straight from the STB. I'm even more impressed with the Hardware/Software combination since I'm only recording about half the bitrate as the original stream. I don't really notice any loss of quality.

So my question for you is...what is your Mini connected to and via what port?

2. I have a 2Ghz with 4GB RAM and a 7200rpm hd Mini, and yet VLC will stutter the monitoring of the recordings from Steve's software. I think it's just too much for the Mini to do the recording and the playback at the same time. At least that's what I'm resigned to believe.
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post #921 of 1194 Old 08-25-2009, 06:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poster View Post

Thanks jeremyandnell, I will try that out.

I haven't recorded in a while as I still am not getting recordings that are of a quality I would like. I know Steve is swamped, so I am kindly waiting to see what he thinks. I am wondering if anyone else can share their experiences in creating recordings? I have never been able to get a quality recording without issues.

Then something is wrong in your environment.

Quote:


V2.5 fixed a big issue for me, but my recordings still have flashes or glitches which reduce the quality. Sports seem to record really fast and blurry as well. I have never been able to replicate recordings like I see on Steve's website.

The sample recordings aren't anything special, no 'slight-of-hand' or 'smoke-and-mirror' just plain-old recordings I made way back to help people understand the quality.

Quote:


Maybe it is my STB, but do others who make recordings of TV shows and sporting events get quality recordings as if you were watching on your DVR or am I aiming too high?

I don't think you're aiming too high, the HDPVR is capable of recording pretty much anything your STB can output. Recent testing with v2.5.2 and a bluray movie (Ripping the Blade Runner Directors cut), the recorded file was simply stunning.

Quote:


So far this has been a frustrating and to an extent a money & time wasting experience. If anyone can share their insights or experiences, I would really appreciate it. That way I can decide if I want to keep working on this or spend my time elsewhere. Thank you!

A couple of things:

1. Can you download and play all of the .m2ts sample recordings properly on your HTPC? Or, do you see any odd flashing or visual artifacts?

2. Make a recording of letterman using your setup, use all of the default settings in HDPVRCapture and you should get exactly the same results. (Try also using the same capture resolutions).

3. If you have firewire on your STB, download AVCNoodle from steventoth.net and simultaneously record the firewire and HDPVRCapture recordings at the same time. DO an A-B comparison, you should find 0 differences on average TV content with average HDPVRCapture settings.

4. Lastly, as bwooster noted, try capturing on a PC for reference, do you see any differences?

5. Unrelated: Feel free to send me the tvpi file and a short (30 second) recording that shows the flashing or visual artifacts. I can look into this and see if I can understand it. If you don't have the ftp details them ping me via email.

- Steve
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post #922 of 1194 Old 08-25-2009, 06:34 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremyandnell View Post

Steve-

Here's a suggestion for version 3 of Capture...it's an echo of another post a ways back:

How about build in the FW control of the STB (like in AVCNoodle) to change the channel, wake up the STB, etc. into Capture? That way we don't have to play with a IR blaster cord in front of the DVR (I don't trust my kids not to knock it off). The FW cable would hide nicely behind the STB and 'should' be 100% reliable, plus it's nice to leave the STB off for scheduled recordings and let the software turn it on.

Just a suggestion...I know you're busy. Keep up the good work!

Jeremy

Hi Jeremy,

I hear you about the kids, amen to that!

Some good news I guess. I've already added support for external channel changers, this is a feature already present in v2.5.x so we're well on our way to using alternatives to the IR blaster. You should see evidence of this in the preferences panel.

One user kindly generated some Firewire channel changing code which I'll try to compile up today and make available for download / test.

I'll add the appropriate command line options to this over the next few days and I'll post a download for test this weekend. In some cases this may be a better solution than the internal IR blaster.

- Steve
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post #923 of 1194 Old 08-25-2009, 06:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremyandnell View Post

I experienced the same issue when trying to configure my setup (I would schedule channel 255 and it would change it to 5). What worked for me was to increase the lag between ir commands. I'm not a home right now, but I think I increased the lag time in the preferences close to the max. Give that a try!

IR blasting with some STB's can be a tricky business, especially if the blaster is not position correctly on your STB. The controls in preferences should allow you to select delays between blasting, use the notional 'Enter' button to speed up channel changes (of your STB needs it).

In my experience the failure to blast correctly usually turns into a positional issue with the LED on the STB. I use a piece of sticky tape to nail it down and I haven't had any issues since.

- Steve
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post #924 of 1194 Old 08-25-2009, 06:39 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poster View Post

Hi Steve,
Well maybe I am getting somewhere with the IR blaster. I scheduled a recording and it talked to my STB. The problem is that it chose the wrong channel. I tried to record the Firestone golf tourney on CBS HD which is channel 505. Well even though the schedule said to put it to that channel, it changed it to channel 5 which is the CBS SD channel. In doing this the recording gets hosed and it records a bunch of garbled screen.

See my comments about positional issues with the IRBlaster LED.

Quote:


I tried to upload the .tvpi file, but it said it was invalid. I can send it through to your FTP, but out of respect I want to make sure it is OK with you before doing so. Thanks.

See my longer reply a few moments ago, feel free to ftp anything to me. Just drop me an email when you have something for me to review.

Regards,

- Steve
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post #925 of 1194 Old 08-25-2009, 06:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremyandnell View Post

The IR Blaster was pretty tricky with my STB (SA8300HD) - I finally found a spot that would work, but it took 20 minutes of playing around with the blaster as well as the delay between signaling rate.

@Poster, see above. I wanted to point out that IR does work successfully but on occasion you really have to adjust it, and for other people it works fine largely the first time.

The Quick Install document for the HDPVR should detail how to locate and install the IR Blaster on your STB, if not I'll talk with the publishing guys and see if we can get something descriptive in the next round of product documentation.

- Steve
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post #926 of 1194 Old 08-26-2009, 09:16 AM
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Just got my HDPVR (not really a PVR, more like a digitizer) and did some test recordings with the demo and they looked great. Awaiting license key so I thought I would ask if there are any technical details available for the different GOP structure settings (sorry if this has been covered already)

thanks,

-scott
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post #927 of 1194 Old 08-26-2009, 12:08 PM - Thread Starter
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@zoyd: You should email me directly, contact details on steventoth.net contact page, I don't think I have your purchase via paypal.
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post #928 of 1194 Old 08-27-2009, 09:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stoth View Post

@zoyd: You should email me directly, contact details on steventoth.net contact page, I don't think I have your purchase via paypal.

Thanks Steve, got things up and running without any problems. Kudos for a very nicely designed piece of software. I did run into the IR blaster quirk where my STB was seeing only 1 digit when changing channels but fixed that by checking the send minimum of 4 digits. This is for the Motorola QIP6416 (using the DCT6412 preset in HDVRCapture).

I set-up a recording overnight and it worked flawlessy but I have a question about bitrates. Does the hardware ever override what is set in your software based on input signal? (ie. 480 vs 1080). I unchecked "always use the default application settings on startup" box so my custom settings would be preserved and set the software at CBR 4mbs for the overnight record of a 480i movie however the movie was recorded at a VBR between 1.5 -2 mbps. Is there a way to schedule a recording and specify per recording VBR/CBR settings? Also, in testing VBR mode, the rates end up ~40% below the average setting and the peak setting appears to have no effect at all. I suspect these are hardware "features" but some clarification would be appreciated.


thanks,

-scott
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post #929 of 1194 Old 08-27-2009, 11:16 AM
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Steven,

Thanks so much for all your work on this program.

I do have one request though - do you think it will ever be possible to somehow use the Hauppauge HD PVR to stream video over the internet using uStream? I dont know if you could somehow find a way to have the HD PVR interact with uStream, but could you take a look and see if its possible?
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post #930 of 1194 Old 08-27-2009, 11:57 AM
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So, Steve, is HDPVRC Snow Leopard-ready? Thought I'd check before diving in to an OS upgrade.
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