What's the best PVR/DVR software for recording shows? (ie. not live TV) - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 15 Old 02-23-2011, 07:16 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm not sure this is the best place to ask but it seems applicable...

What's the best PVR/DVR backend for scheduling and recording shows? I don't need live tv or timeshifting capability.

I just want to schedule some recordings, record the shows in MPEG-4, and then drop the shows into a folder structure.

Does anybody have any recommendations?

(I'm using XBMC to playback my content if that helps in any way...)
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post #2 of 15 Old 02-23-2011, 07:29 AM
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I don't know how friendly it is to XBMC, but if you have Windows7, you can use Media Center. It's not extra cost. The biggest problem you have, off the top of my head, the recordings are named by date and channel (I think). So, you'll have to rename for the scrappers to pull the metatag information.
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post #3 of 15 Old 02-23-2011, 08:27 AM
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WMC records to WTV and SageTV records to MPEG. If you want a different format (such as MP4 or MKV) you will need to either remux manually or have a program such as MCEBuddy or DVSMSToolbox convert the recording once complete.

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post #4 of 15 Old 02-23-2011, 10:19 AM
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I'm using SageTV to record the content and then a supplemental tool called SAGE-XBMC that moves SageTV recordings into the folder structure and triggers a XBMC library update. If XBMC playback is a prerequisite, I think that's the way to go. I think WMC7 would be easier to setup, but your best off watching that content in WMC7 rather than trying to move it.
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post #5 of 15 Old 02-23-2011, 10:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pkscout View Post

I'm using SageTV to record the content and then a supplemental tool called SAGE-XBMC that moves SageTV recordings into the folder structure and triggers a XBMC library update. If XBMC playback is a prerequisite, I think that's the way to go. I think WMC7 would be easier to setup, but your best off watching that content in WMC7 rather than trying to move it.

Also, the question for the OP, does he want commercials cut out. Using SageTV you can easily have commercials skipped while viewing in Sagetv without having to alter the original recording. However, if he wants this to carry forward to XBMC then he will have to use a tool like DVSMSToolbox (combined with comskip or showanalyzer)

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post #6 of 15 Old 02-23-2011, 12:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies!

As for the questions, I DO want to remove commericials and record/convert to MKV or another "XBMC friendly" format.

That SAGE-XBMC script looks pretty interesting. I've never messed around with Sage or any other PVR/DVR software for that matter.

Would that be the best backend software to use? Can you schedule recordings on the web or anything like that?
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post #7 of 15 Old 02-23-2011, 02:38 PM
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Another option is XBMC with the Mythbox add-on and a Myth backend.
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post #8 of 15 Old 02-24-2011, 04:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Oh! I forgot to mention one of the most important requirements for me...

I need to perform the recordings on a headless machine (virtual server [ESXi]). I suppose I could technically run any PVR software even though it's headless but a client/server system is probably better. The client would only be used to monitor what's going on and schedule recordings. The server should perform the recordings and move them into my XBMC folder structure, etc.
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post #9 of 15 Old 02-24-2011, 04:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sofakng View Post
Oh! I forgot to mention one of the most important requirements for me...

I need to perform the recordings on a headless machine (virtual server [ESXi]). I suppose I could technically run any PVR software even though it's headless but a client/server system is probably better. The client would only be used to monitor what's going on and schedule recordings. The server should perform the recordings and move them into my XBMC folder structure, etc.
It depends on whether the device driver you need has been virtualized. For example, if your TV tuner is a PCIe device then most likely not. Likewise for a firewire device due to licensing issues. But if your tuner device is a USB device like the HVR-950Q, or a network device like the HDHR then it might work in a VM since both USB and network drivers are virtualized.
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post #10 of 15 Old 02-24-2011, 05:08 AM - Thread Starter
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The tuner device is USB (Genpix Skywalker) so it should work but I won't know for another day or two...
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post #11 of 15 Old 02-24-2011, 09:51 AM
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I've tried both SageTV and Myth servers under ESXi. Both work fine. The SageTV recordings can be brought over into XBMC's library with the tool mentioned before. My capture device is the HDHR which was very easy to set up in Sage and not overly difficult in Myth.

After evaluating both for a while I settled on the Myth backend because of the ability to watch live TV/EPG that I got with the Mythbox add-on. If I didn't have that requirement I would have used the SageTV server as a backend. SageTV has a much better interface as a back end than does Myth (IMHO).
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post #12 of 15 Old 02-24-2011, 12:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice!

Have you tried MediaPortal? That's the other big one I was considering (aside from SageTV and MythTV) I've heard good things about it.

It looks like MythTV might have the best web interface though... (SageTV seems to have a third party web interface but it hasn't been updated in a long time?)
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post #13 of 15 Old 02-24-2011, 03:57 PM
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No, once I found Mythbox I quit looking at other back ends.

Yes, you're right that Myth beats Sage as far as a web based front end to the back end.
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post #14 of 15 Old 02-24-2011, 05:21 PM
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You might want to double check tuner support, I haven't heard much about the Skywalker in a while.

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do, see movies the way they were meant to be seen
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post #15 of 15 Old 02-24-2011, 06:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbone1026 View Post

Also, the question for the OP, does he want commercials cut out. Using SageTV you can easily have commercials skipped while viewing in Sagetv without having to alter the original recording. However, if he wants this to carry forward to XBMC then he will have to use a tool like DVSMSToolbox (combined with comskip or showanalyzer)

There's a SAGETV plugin called commercial detector that you can install from the plugins menu that will install all the commercial skip stuff you need and trigger either comskip (free version included, can use donation version to do HD) or ShowAnalyzer. The plugin triggers one of them either after the recording is done or while it is happening. No need to use DVSMSToolbox, as th SAGE-XBMC program can be configured to wait for the .edl file to be generated and move it to the XBMC directory when the video is moved. I use it now and it works like a charm.
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