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post #121 of 186 Old 11-02-2010, 01:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suntan View Post


The problem they face is that Google is pretty much willing to give people all of that for free...

Pay TomTom $40 a quarter for updated maps < Google Maps loading updated maps everytimg I start it.

-Suntan

But google requires your phone to have internet access and maps are downloaded as needed. This makes it not dependable for trips across country. We shouldn't have to connect to a remote service to get the maps. Iphone and android have more than enough space with sd storage to fit the usa map info.

That is how garmin or tomtom can be better than google. They've already invested the cost for the map info, it would be relatively low investment to write app for the phone and the sale would be almost all profit.

People always are willing to pay for better dependability of a product.
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post #122 of 186 Old 11-02-2010, 01:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrwalte View Post

People always are willing to pay for better dependability of a product.

Well, I agree to some extent.

I think there is still a (shrinking) market for a stand alone GPS unit (big loud speaker, built in suction cup attachment, won't overheat and shut off when cooked on a dashboard, non-reflective screen that doesn't blank out in direct sunlight, etc.) I have one, and use it for long drives, even though I can use my phone in a pinch.

However, I think expecting someone to pay map money (ie $40 every couple months or so) for a phone app, the market for that would be pretty small when most people can just pull up google maps for free. I just don't see a Garmin or a TomTom being interested in selling a (relatively) low cost app until their dedicated GPS sales goes down a long way.

In any case, let's not clog this channel up with GPS talk. Hifi was learning us about this new technical revolution...

-Suntan
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post #123 of 186 Old 11-03-2010, 11:55 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Julie's Journey to Cut the Cable Cord

"I'm sick of cable, sick of CableCard, sick of cable bills, sick of "60 Minutes" not recording because a football game ran too long. So I'm on a journey to cut the cable cord, once and for all. Hopefully you can help me do it."
http://www.cepro.com/article/my_jour...he_cable_cord/

Julie needs to read this thread as she still has too many subscription based gadgets.
My advice is dump the iWhatever and go HTPC.

I have two, what I deem necessary subscriptions: Verizon smartphone subscription and land based Internet.
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post #124 of 186 Old 11-03-2010, 12:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CSMR View Post

OK, I remember reading about this a long time ago. See:
http://www.audioholics.com/education...s-d-amplifiers
The author has designed some of the best class-d amplifiers and published papers on it.
This approach is several years old, has been done by several companies, and is the wrong approach to Class D amps.

On why active speakers with active crossovers are better than passive speakers with passive crossovers:
http://sound.westhost.com/biamp-vs-passive.htm

I recall reading this article when it was originally published. Looking back his analog approach has turned out to be the wrong one. One cannot mix analog milli-volt and micro-volt signals with 50 volt steps in class D output stages. Dah! But it was the best choice for him at the time to form a company and cash-in.

He doesn't make much sense either:
Quote:
"Digitally controlled class D. Amplifiers with a digitally generated control that switches a power stage. No error control is present. Those that do have an error control can be shown to be topologically equivalent to an analog-controlled class D with a DAC in front."

The Tact Millennium got excellent reviews but was hideously expensive. The lesson here is to never buy technology before its time.

The graduate level Korean based mathematics wizards have now advanced the SOTA in digital amplifiers. I think I posted they used multiple feedback paths too.
All for $199 with no tax and free shipping.

Now is the time based upon superior engineering.
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post #125 of 186 Old 11-04-2010, 01:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hardware manufactures are well aware of the consumer trend to cut out the cable TV middleman.
So they are tacking on their proprietary Internet solutions.
Here is a nice table from HDGuru.com:


Are there similar tables for Blu-ray players? Or media players? How about receivers?

Why are we being pushed to purchase a TV to get Internet access?
Why do we need to purchase a Blu-ray player to get Internet access?
Why do we need to purchase media player to get Internet access?

Instead consider reducing your subscription and gadget count by purchasing a highly integrated Blu-ray based HTPC. It plays every format, and with the highest performance to boot.
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post #126 of 186 Old 12-06-2010, 04:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I've just completed assembling another high-performance htpc with the new Radeon 6870 card, since I sent my first MB back and purchased a second.
I also wanted to see any benefits over the small sized real-low power htpc's and add Blu-ray 3D playback capability.

I selected an Intel 655 ($149) and overclocked it by simply increasing the multiplier, with a compact CPU heatsink:

The case is really nice but really large/deep, the Antec NSK2480:

The 6870 requires a second PCI-e power cable so I substituted an Antec 500w green power supply.

I also updated the AMD driver and Power Dvd 10 to the latest release (and disabled Blu-ray Live: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...905&highlight=). Having the two identical motherboards allow me to use the boot disc backup (after using another license key ).

So how does it work Blu-ray 3D work? Beautifully with the Samsung 700 HDMI 1.4 all-digital receiver and Panasonic 65" VT25 plasma. Some functionality gets disabled and the picture goes off the screen on the bottom. No doubt Cyberlink will fine-tune to enable 1:1 mapping.

The only surprise is a large improvement in 2D picture quality over the Radeon 5570. I had to change the grounding too (I use them deadly cheater plugs).
One nice feature of the best plasmas is the per-pixel contrast is greater than that of LCDs. The 6800 series redesigned and optimized H/W offer greater fine detail (in this same area). I only use the edge sharpness control. Now every 2D picture is more 3D dimensional. The picture is harder hitting (pop) too.
In conclusion a worthwhile upgrade for those who want the best picture quality at popular prices.
Now htpc pulls ahead of the best stand-alone players. Of course the the Radeon 6800 series also processes interlaced OTA/WMC 7 HDTV signals superbly too.
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post #127 of 186 Old 12-06-2010, 11:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Forgot to add the outstanding 8GB of 1333 memory for $99.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820226095

For some reason its out of stock.
This is a far better suited for htpc than the very expensive SSD's pushed by Tom's Hardware. In fact I minimize my Windows virtual memory disc, because there is now enough (much faster) ram. SSD's excel for quick boot times which is unimportant for htpc. Instead I use Windows sleep mode anyways. Never underestimate people in the industry pushing the highly profitable lines (that goes for movie critics too). Dah!
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post #128 of 186 Old 12-08-2010, 06:32 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Video picture quality is of primary importance in htpc selection, at all price levels, as even inexpensive Walmart HDTVs can show the difference.

To that end, experienced reviewers can effectively compare and rate image quality between competing brands and price points thanks to the new HVQ 2.0 image quality tests:
http://www.hqv.com/index.cfm?page=benchmark

The Kitguru.net offers some excellent reviews including this massive image quality tests. The results are still valid even though AMD/ATI has introduced the 6800 series with image results topping out over 200!
http://www.kitguru.net/components/gr...d-intel/all/1/

The ATI 6850/70 series offers crystal clear images, lowest level of artifacts, Blu-ray 3D and HDMI 1.4. These are the features which smaller form factor htpc's or notbooks omit because they don't have the space for a full sized video card.

The ASRock Vision 3D appears to be a breakthrough HTPC but the user experience here at AVS merits caution, and the Kitguru review somehow omits rating the image quality.
A system is only as good as its weakest link and KitGuru's review blows it in refusing to discuss the limitations of the nVidia GT 425M. The M stands mobile and is designed for space saving notebooks which strongly implies reduced image quality. Another case where what is omitted is the most important.
AnandTech gives us the rest-of-the-picture:
"We find that the GT 430 scores the same as the GT 425M in the ASRock Vision 3D. It is also better than the Intel HD Graphics (which scored 133) with respect to this metric, but comes up short against the HD 5570."
http://www.anandtech.com/show/3973/n...force-gt-430/4

Notice that I just replaced my 5570 with a 6870 and noticed a large improved in high frequency detail (see above posts):

HQV 2.0 Benchmark
-------------------
Intel HD Graphics 133
Nvidia GT 425M 148
AMD/ATI 5570 189
AMD/ATI 68xx 204

In any event this is the type of minefield the consumer must wade through.
Lesson learned: avoid mobile chipsets in HTPC's or just go with the Intel Integrated solution in the i3 or i5 processors.

Further by going with a proprietary all-in-one htpc, upgrades to improved video cards are limited to non-existent. Better to build your own htpc.
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post #129 of 186 Old 12-08-2010, 08:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiFiFun View Post

The 6800 series redesigned and optimized H/W offer greater fine detail (in this same area). I only use the edge sharpness control. Now every 2D picture is more 3D dimensional. The picture is harder hitting (pop) too.


Do you have evidence of this ? Burst patterns for example? I find this difficult to believe unless you've just cranked up the sharpness or changed the resolution/scaling.

digital film janitor
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post #130 of 186 Old 12-08-2010, 09:24 AM
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I have not reduced number of components. I have much more. So some components went away. They've just been turned into more computer, more networking equipment, more hard drives, etc. At least some live in the basement now and not in my entertainment center?

For instance, my cable (coax) comes into the basement and goes into a network tuner (+1). TV is distributed throughout the house via the LAN now. Ok, so no cable STBs (-2). That means only a few channels (the networks) which is mostly what we watched anyway. When a networked cablecard tuner comes out I'll switch to that. Long gone are my tape, CD and DVD players (-3) thanks to the media server (and two backup drives, network switch and UPS) (+5) next to the network tuner.

But now, I have more PCs around my house than ever. There's was already the laptop for the wife, the desktop for the kids homework and my office PC. Now add two HTPCs, a media/file server and one Windows Media Center extender.

So, yeah, I lost the 2 STBS, a tape player, a DVD/VCD combo player and a CD player but I gained 3 PCs (2 HTPCs and a server), all kinds of networking equipment, backup drives and a UPS.

I also spend most night until 2am debugging the latest issue with something not working (Netflix authorization, no signal on the TV, missing channels/guide problems, loss of HD audio, server complaining about backups/outdated antivirus/etc., software updates (iTunes, Adobe, etc.), whiny CPU fans, funny burning smells, etc.,etc.,etc....).

Sometimes I even watch the TV or listen to music.

I am not sure if I am having fun yet.

 

 

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post #131 of 186 Old 12-08-2010, 10:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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With freedom comes responsibility.
But I do understand exactly what you state.
The solution is to automate, use vertical integration and simplify.

WMC 7 DVR is an excellent example of being set up once, and let it perform the housekeeping tasks automatically. It puts the computer to sleep when not busy. Same goes for Windows Update.

Video cards now send all audio data untouched to the receiver. No need for a high-end sound card and analog cables.

My Samsung 700 all-digital Samsung receiver is superior to all ( analog, ICE and class A/B others, costs less, and consumes less power) . HDMI issues are almost eliminated with just a htpc connected to it. No more high-end separate analog components. One cable to receiver and one to the TV. Is that not elegant?

The network head-end is expected to be busy and cluttered, but no-one except yourself should ever go there. Fiddling should be minimal. Turn it on and forget about it.

Resist the temptation to buy more media gadgets. Ask what can they do that my htpc cannot do better? For example some media servers are rated highly because they include now include an Internet browser! Big deal. The real fight is to create simple drive shares and prevent MicroSoft from taking control.

As for reducing hard drive count, I changed philosophy now that 2TB cost $80. That is I make backup copies of music and pictures on several PCs, especially to the boot drives. This helps to reduce network traffic and especially wireless issues, since alot of media files are local. Since I always back up each boot drive, there are plenty of copies, both on and off-line. I should never loose anything.

I use Beyond Compare 3 (a wonderful file comparison tool) to consolidate and eliminate duplicate songs and movies (as I buy more Blu-rays). They all fit on a WD USB 3.0 3TB mybook (however the usb port on the router has issues with drives over 2TB).

Thanks for the excellent post.
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post #132 of 186 Old 12-08-2010, 11:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.D View Post

Do you have evidence of this ? Burst patterns for example? I find this difficult to believe unless you've just cranked up the sharpness or changed the resolution/scaling.

I think you nailed me on this one. A basic rule in testing is to change one variable at a time. I changed several; even switching to a new computer.
However i do have several systems with Power Dvd and ATi 5750 cards. So was it the new video card, new driver, Power DVD 10 update or a better computer power supply?
The answer is, usually in real life its a combination of factors leading to an improvement.

There has been a great race in the HDTV market to achieve and restore the best "natural" sharpness which was removed when the signal was sampled. Samsung HDTVs have led the charge, with many other brands recently catching-up.

The Panasonic VT25 built-in image processing is NOT the most naturally sharp. It is now, for the first time with the 6870. I don't use much sharpness enhancement either as the new extended resolution is largely built-in. The clarity is approximately at the same level as my Pioneer 141, probably the best plasma display ever built.

The professional reviewers noticed the improved detail, I believe. This is why the HQV scores now reach over 200! True progress.

I would use the HQV 2.0 results as a primary guide to image quality. If the video card costs $50 extra to achieve a score of over 200 then go for it, as 210 is virtual perfection.
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post #133 of 186 Old 12-08-2010, 03:16 PM
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Hi with your latest 3d build are you still getting true hd audio playing a 3dbr disc or file to your samsung 700 with just one hdmi cable?
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post #134 of 186 Old 12-09-2010, 09:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4492011 View Post

Hi with your latest 3d build are you still getting true hd audio playing a 3dbr disc or file to your samsung 700 with just one hdmi cable?

Yes, but its annoying to frequently go reset it in the audio configuration to pass-thru untouched to the receiver via the HDMI cable.
Power Dvd likes to decode into PCM as its default state. I find its decoding inferior to the Samsung for two reasons: the tonal balance can change a bit (the Samsung is clearer) and the volume level is noticeably lower than the Samsung.

Note: their have been issues with 3D disc compatibility.

This latest Pwer Dvd 10 also threw in a hidden video quality setting: I set it to best rather than the default auto.

But it sure is nice not seeing it flicker with advertising ever time you stop playback - as the firewall block makes it bee-have.
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post #135 of 186 Old 12-09-2010, 12:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiFiFun View Post

It turns out the HDHomeRun dual OTA HDTV tuners with Ethernet output are a lot less useful than originally thought, and for several reasons:

Sharing is Difficult
---------------------------
a) sharing tuners makes family member upset when no tuners are available
b ) DVR's should always use two local, internal dedicated tuners. Otherwise your favorite shows may not be recorded with the WMC warning: no tuner available
c) HDHomeRun's creates ALOT more external clutter with the box, wall warts, splitter and cables.

Solution: enter the AVerMedia HDTV tuner Duet, a low profile dual pci-e card with just one coaxial input.

You misunderstand how the HDHomerun is designed to be used. It's for recording HD TV, not watching live HD TV. If you want to watch Live TV then use the tuner in your TV. If you still need 2 tuners for each box, then just buy 4 HDHRs and store them all in a closet with one of your gigabit switches. No eyesore at all. Of course, it all comes down to personal preference. I prefer my HTPCs (and clients) to be small. Internal cards work against that. Others like to pack their HTPC cases with bunches of hard drives, graphics cards, etc. I use a server for storage and notebook hdds in the HTPCs. I guess the point I'm trying to make is that what you like isn't always going to suit the next person and being so persistent about specific hardware solutions makes your posts seem less credible.

BT

BTW, your condescending tone is getting somewhat irritating also.

Just remember, to the MPAA "We're all guilty until..............."
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post #136 of 186 Old 12-09-2010, 02:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjterry62 View Post

makes your posts seem less credible.

Less credible?? How's that possible?

-Suntan
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post #137 of 186 Old 12-10-2010, 05:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
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"You misunderstand how the HDHomerun is designed to be used. It's for recording HD TV, not watching live HD TV. "

I guess the manufacture (Silicon Dust) doesn't know what they are talking about either:
"HDHomeRun is a TV tuner for computers - Ethernet attached. The HDHomeRun connects to your home router enabling you to watch and record TV from any computer on your home network."

http://www.silicondust.com/

Again Silicon dust allows any computer to become a TV, especially since the resolution on both is 18920*1080.
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post #138 of 186 Old 12-10-2010, 08:47 AM
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HDHomerun is nice. But like everything else in the HTPC realm, there are limits.

I agree with the statement, watch TV with built in tuner in the TV. I personally don't have any cable going into one of my HDTV because it was built before QAM was created, and I don't pick up much from the attached rabbits for OTA HD. To watch live TV, you need software. Silicondust gives QuickTV for windows, but nothing for mac. I kind of see this also as a fail on the poster for not having the foresight that more than two people may try to watch TV, record a show, or both. I have also seen the HTPC lost connection to the HDHR.

I can't disagree about another box being added to the LAN with more cables and plugs. Then again, can't install everything locally in small form factor machines because no internal space or not enough USB ports (see Mac Mini or Dell Zino HD).

I personally like it and think it works well for my needs.
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post #139 of 186 Old 12-10-2010, 08:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovekeiiy View Post

or not enough USB ports (see Mac Mini or Dell Zino HD).

I've run 4 USB tuners off of one powered USB hub for years. Works just fine.

Won't solve your clutter concerns, but as far as having enough USB ports, that's a non-issue.

-Suntan
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post #140 of 186 Old 12-10-2010, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiFiFun View Post

"You misunderstand how the HDHomerun is designed to be used. It's for recording HD TV, not watching live HD TV. "

I guess the manufacture (Silicon Dust) doesn't know what they are talking about either:
"HDHomeRun is a TV tuner for computers - Ethernet attached. The HDHomeRun connects to your home router enabling you to watch and record TV from any computer on your home network."

http://www.silicondust.com/

Again Silicon dust allows any computer to become a TV, especially since the resolution on both is 18920*1080.



No, they know EXACTLY what they are talking about. The HDHR allows you to watch TV using any computer attached to your home network. What they DID NOT understand was that some people would try to watch more shows than they had tuners. It may seem strange, but a given ATSC/QAM tuner can only tune one program at a time.
But a solution exists!! Since the majority of your INTEL i3 HTPCs are connected the HD TVs, then you should also have ATSC/QAM tuners in them. Connect your coax and you watch live broadcasts using the TV's tuner and the HDHR's tuners are left for others or for recording. AMAZING!! Tuners in a TV! Who'd a thunk it?

Anyway, I have been doing this for years and it's worked out well for my family of 6. I don't recall you stating the number of family members that you have, but I believe you did say you had 3 theater rooms (each with 2 displays, which I find strange).
FYI, I have a single HDHR and an old Avermedia A180 that I use to record HDTV. We have 21 programs that we record on a weekly basis. All of these recordings can be viewed on any of our PC connected HDTVs (or the computer's monitor, if the user wishes).

You claim to be on a quest to eliminate hardware and wall warts with a vengence, yet you seem to be okay building several of your INTEL i3 HTPCs in (what I consider) large HTPC cases and installing a dual tuner and a discreet graphics card in each one. Then running Coax AND Cat5e to each one.

You could have 4 HDHRs located right beside your cable box / antenna(s) amplifier (no signal decrease) and then only need Cat5e to each HTPC (which could be smaller because you've eliminated those internal tuner cards and, theoretically, graphics cards, since the i3 is supposed to be fully capable of HD playback). Imagine eliminating all of that heat inside your cases, not to mention all that $.25 per ft RG6 QS!!

Or, even better, you could switch over to SageTV, have only 1 INTEL i3 HTPC and use the HD300 Extender in each room as opposed to building those INTEL i3 HTPCs. WOW! All those big HTPC cases replaced by a little tiny box. How's that for eliminating clutter?

Just food for thought.

BT

BTW, Also, glad to see you are trying the Antec NSK2480. My main Sage server is in one along with a single 2tb 3.5" hdd and 160 gb 2.5" OS drive. Very nice case.

Also, what exactly are you trying to say here?
"Again Silicon dust allows any computer to become a TV, especially since the resolution on both is 18920*1080."

Just remember, to the MPAA "We're all guilty until..............."
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post #141 of 186 Old 12-10-2010, 11:02 AM
 
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Of course, if you are sharing your 2 tuner HDHomeRun with multiple computers, and you have both tuners in use already, then you will certainly get a All Tuners in Use message.


Real world example. You, your wife, and your kid all live in the same house. You own two cars. Your wife and your kid each take a car and depart the house. You want to take a car and leave as well, but when you look into the driveway you get a All Cars in Use message.

This should not surprise anyway.
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post #142 of 186 Old 12-13-2010, 07:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
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On my home theater big-screen, Blu-ray playback stuttered and badly and it varied, as sometimes it was smooth and other times it was not.
Local playback (files stored on the local hard drive) was much smoother than network streaming.

The networking tab of Windows task manager showed deep nulls (data rates going down to zero). Network playback must be smooth with certainly no dips half below the average rate.

The possible solution can be easy to complicated. I'll offer a few which worked for me:
0) Check if the Intel processor has Speed-Step enabled in the BIOS menu. Disable this guessing on Intel's part on each computer. The free program CPU-Z will display the processor core clock, and let you see if the speed is "hopping around", in a rather poor, unsuitable manner for hard real-time (video) programs. I think this was the root cause of the network stuttering.

1) Allow exceptions for typical video and audio files by the virus scanner

2) Establish a clean baseline by reinstalling the latest Ethernet drivers from Windows Device Manager. Do this for all computers on the network.
Realtek drivers are here:
http://www.realtek.com/downloads/dow...&GetDown=false

Leave everything default except for MTU which I set to 9K, since were streaming. Other settings (like off-loading) are pretty dangerous, and can choke your streaming. Ridiculous but true.
Then, with Windows Task Manager->networking->network utilization monitoring, copy video files between computer desktops. For Gigabit Ethernet you should see 80-90MB/sec (9*8 = 720Mbits/sec).

3) Uninstall the ATI/AMD drivers/software completely from the Control Panel, then reinstall, then reinstall Power DVD 10

4) make sure the buffers are enabled if you use Virtual Clone Drive program

5) Disable Internet Moderation in the Device Manager-> Network Card ->Advanced properties

6) allow big Jumbo Frames (9K) in the same advanced properties

7) power saving features are nice when they don't cause performance degradation.

Motion jerking can also be caused by selecting the incorrect video vertical refresh rate (24 or 30Hz) for the particular source. Look at the information box in PowerDvd to see what rate the disc was mastered at.
Then select a video refresh rate to be the same or multiple (with zero remainder) which s best compatible with the display. For most its 24 or 60Hz.

I already designed for the most power efficient htpc. However it must be able to run instantaneously and at full throttle too. Speed-step is obsolete and should be eliminated, as its behavior leads to unpredictable, inconsistent results which are tough to track down.
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post #143 of 186 Old 12-13-2010, 09:05 PM
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I've run 4 USB tuners off of one powered USB hub for years. ...

I forgot about those. Shows I often I use them. And yes, does not improve the clutter issue at all.

I'm still not following the argument about Silicondust being short sighted about the number of turners available in regards to live and recording TV simultaneously. Yes, TVs have tuners. And some TVs even to picture-in-picture, but with them, you're still limited by the number of available tuners. And this situation is not unique to HDHR. All TV tuners solutions are limited how many live feeds for watching and recording by the number of tuners the device has. Thus is why you're seeing solutions being build with four tuners, even the ones that take cablecard.

Without getting into some of limitation the software has with the number tuners that can recongized, if you're recording that many shows and watching that many live feeds at the same time, just have to get more tuners. Maybe someone should preorder, when it becomes available the new HDHomerun with the cablecard version that has THREE tuners; I believe the MSRP is $250. Otherwise, just pick up a second dual tuner for about $90. I believe both Newegg and Amazon are selling at that price.
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post #144 of 186 Old 12-14-2010, 05:38 AM - Thread Starter
 
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The usb tuners I've sampled have all had inferior performance. Not recommended for a htpc.

Again DVRs need dedicated tuners. WMC needs to know how many tuners it has for its exclusive use, so as to provide feedback to the user who want to record and watch too many programs concurrently.
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post #145 of 186 Old 12-14-2010, 06:46 AM
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I forgot about those. Shows I often I use them. And yes, does not improve the clutter issue at all.

I'm still not following the argument about Silicondust being short sighted about the number of turners available in regards to live and recording TV simultaneously. Yes, TVs have tuners. And some TVs even to picture-in-picture, but with them, you're still limited by the number of available tuners. And this situation is not unique to HDHR. All TV tuners solutions are limited how many live feeds for watching and recording by the number of tuners the device has. Thus is why you're seeing solutions being build with four tuners, even the ones that take cablecard.

Without getting into some of limitation the software has with the number tuners that can recongized, if you're recording that many shows and watching that many live feeds at the same time, just have to get more tuners. Maybe someone should preorder, when it becomes available the new HDHomerun with the cablecard version that has THREE tuners; I believe the MSRP is $250. Otherwise, just pick up a second dual tuner for about $90. I believe both Newegg and Amazon are selling at that price.

The standard HDHR Dual Tuner is currently $128.55 (incl. shipping) at the Egg. I think the best thing about the HDHR is that it can be installed near the source (antenna, cable box, etc..) and eliminate any signal loss that would come from long runs of coax throughout the house. I run RG11 straight from the source and use a high quality digital splitter to allow for each HDHR tuner. After that, everything is on the network! I have been tempted to try a wireless setup for HD streaming, but haven't found many success stories to build my confidence. But still, nothing but Cat5e coming from the wall is pretty nice.

BT

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post #146 of 186 Old 12-14-2010, 07:32 AM - Thread Starter
 
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The usb tuners I've sampled have all had inferior performance. Not recommended for a htpc.

Again DVRs need dedicated tuners. WMC needs to know how many tuners it has for its exclusive use, so as to provide feedback to the user who want to record and watch too many programs concurrently.

An important WMC 7 setup point:
When setting up WMC 7 to scan for TV stations with the AverMedia Duet tuners installed, disconnect the Ethernet cable from the wall. This forces WMC to only discover and use the two internal tuners. Further no one else can see them. They are both dedicated and exclusive, and will be the only tuners WMC 7 will use.
For those feeling lucky, they could also use one of the "floating" HD Home Run tuners with Quick TV to watch a third channel, if the two other are busy recording. Whew!
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An important WMC 7 setup point:
When setting up WMC 7 to scan for TV stations with the AverMedia Duet tuners installed, disconnect the Ethernet cable from the wall. This forces WMC to only discover and use the two internal tuners. Further no one else can see them. They are both dedicated and exclusive, and will be the only tuners WMC 7 will use.
For those feeling lucky, they could also use one of the "floating" HD Home Run tuners with Quick TV to watch a third channel, if the two other are busy recording. Whew!

I've always seen this as the problem with using multiple HTPCs instead of a single HTPC and clients. I configure all tuners through the main Sage HTPC and the Sage clients just use any that are free. If none are free, then they can watch any recorded TV or browse for internet streamed shows. Rarely have I had any tuner conflicts at all.

I recently upgraded my system to Win 7 / SageTV Media Center 7 and I must say that setup has come a LONG WAY since version 5. I just use the Win 7 decoders, hardware acceleration and VMR9 and it just works.

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post #148 of 186 Old 12-15-2010, 04:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Actually the HTPC in our family room is the only one that records.
Everyone else adds its "Recorded TV" shared folder through the Windows Media Player or Center Setup. Everyone else also uses the floating HDHomeRun Tuners.

We can also add a portable TV to any room instantly, with our i3 based 17" 1440*900 Asus notebook, using a wireless N 300mbs connection.

Dedicated tuners guarantee Quality of Service. Otherwise scheduling conflicts will occur: its just a matter of time.
I learned my lesson, afterI lost control of a tuner (to another user) by just changing channels. It only took a few milliseconds to get screwed (just like on Wall St).

Also remember to set the region code (in Device Manager) for new Blu-ray optical drives. Otherwise erratic playback issues will result.

Now my home network of five computers are always reliable for any and all network streaming tasks, both internally and externally. I pay no subscriptions other than basic Internet service.
I don't have to wait for Sony, Google or Netflix, Hulu to add features over the next ten years, while they fight-it-out over bandwidth issues.
I buy music and carefully screened Blu-rays (not falling for reviewer/industry hype) from Amazon, but rent most movies from convenient dollar kiosks first.
I can fast-forward at anytime (think Adobe Flash Player) and view at my convenience with no DRM or downsampling quality issues.

Here is a new form of DRM from Pandora:
"Unfortunately our music licenses limit the amount of songs you can skip in an hour".
In other words we pay to loose our freedom of choice, buy into more media gadgets and clutter, all because we are unable to manage our own computers.
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post #149 of 186 Old 12-15-2010, 06:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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The pressure is on Tivo to adapt and survive. Apparently they too don't mind dumping cable, as they have a nice chart highlighting the quality of OTA programming:
http://www.tivo.com/products/source/...broadcast.html

My family records many of these free shows and keep the ones we choose. The closed Tivo DVR has two OTA tuners built-in, but streaming is questionable and limited.
Then there is still that extra monthly subscription.
Further they still insert advertising, monitor every button customer press and send it instantly to advertisers. Just like Google!
Except, as Tivo is all to quick to point out, Google is missing that all important Digital Video Recorder (DVR). Both omit disc playback.
What a cat fight!

The purpose of this post is to highlight the superior programming content of OTA broadcasters. So consider not paying to be held captive and monitored with a htpc, which does everything extremely well.
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post #150 of 186 Old 12-16-2010, 08:45 AM
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Th/e standard HDHR Dual Tuner is currently $128.55 (incl. shipping) at the Egg.

My applogies. Apparently Newegg and Amazon did the same black friday deal. I just assumed there would going to be perminant with the announcement and of the three tuner cablecard HDHomerune Prime (HDHR Prime product page and press release on Nov 29, 2010. Give it time, they'll drop like a rock in price.

Quote:
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I think the best thing about the HDHR is that it can be installed near the source (antenna, cable box, etc..) and eliminate any signal loss that would come from long runs of coax throughout the house. I run RG11 straight from the source and use a high quality digital splitter to allow for each HDHR tuner. After that, everything is on the network! I have been tempted to try a wireless setup for HD streaming, but haven't found many success stories to build my confidence. But still, nothing but Cat5e coming from the wall is pretty nice.

That depends where the antenna is located about the signal amplifier. As for wireless, like anything else, it depends how strong and stable your signal is. Other than the occasional pixelation from the signal dropping in strength too much on the wireless, no issues for me. But I have that same issue across all applications that are dependent on strong signals. The wireless realm is a has a lot of factors that effect signal. And unfortunately, most people just aren't aware how easily items can cause radio interference.
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