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post #6211 of 6235 Old 07-28-2014, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by pepar View Post
Thanks. I have more things to research.

Re the i5 over i3 ... i3 a bit on the weak side for your workload?

Jeff
No, the i3 is not at all weak and runs the server apps quite well. The built-in Intel graphics on the i3 can play a 40Mbps BD rip without a hint of stutter. The i5 is just more muscle with a quad-core and I like more muscle. When I got done putting together the system with all the disk drives etc I was in for about $11-1200. It then seemed silly that I skimped on the $60 it would have cost to put in an i5. I won't make that "mistake" with the next box.

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post #6212 of 6235 Old 07-28-2014, 03:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
I'm triple posting now... Guess I need to look for the WD live mentioned... I need something that will playback the backed up files I made in a robust manor but without any un-needed manipulation....

I hope this can be done... I'm a bit discouraged though ... really....
You seem to be skirting around the solid solutions. Get a real media player. The WDTV Live, Mede8er, Dune -- these are all established media streamers that handle full bitrate BD rips in MKV, .m2ts, .iso, whatever. You you get 1080p/24 and HD audio passthrough and you don't transcode anything to these because they play everything native. They work with DLNA servers or as direct network clients using your choice of SMB or NFS shares. I favor the WDTV Lives as I noted in my post above. They cost under $100 and beat everything in their price class unless you are into 3D in which case you go with the mede8er.

Last thing -- if you want to stream full bitrate BD's don't even think wireless.

- kelson h

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post #6213 of 6235 Old 07-28-2014, 04:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
No, the i3 is not at all weak and runs the server apps quite well. The built-in Intel graphics on the i3 can play a 40Mbps BD rip without a hint of stutter. The i5 is just more muscle with a quad-core and I like more muscle. When I got done putting together the system with all the disk drives etc I was in for about $11-1200. It then seemed silly that I skimped on the $60 it would have cost to put in an i5. I won't make that "mistake" with the next box.
Ahhh, my basement server will only serve. Not even transcode. Two BD or DSD/MLP streams max. I was headed to an i3, so I guess I still am.

Thanks,
Jeff
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post #6214 of 6235 Old 07-28-2014, 04:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
No, the i3 is not at all weak and runs the server apps quite well. The built-in Intel graphics on the i3 can play a 40Mbps BD rip without a hint of stutter. The i5 is just more muscle with a quad-core and I like more muscle. When I got done putting together the system with all the disk drives etc I was in for about $11-1200. It then seemed silly that I skimped on the $60 it would have cost to put in an i5. I won't make that "mistake" with the next box.
I would have preferred an i3 for the lower power usage. I picked up a Dell Core i5 PC last Thanksgiving for under $400 with 8GB of memory. I just put in a couple of BD drives for rips, 8GB more of memory, a 180GB SSD for the OS, and a 4TB drive for my recordings and IP camera clips. I use it for my Blue Iris/TiVo Desktop Server. I would have preferred the Core i3 for lower power since it runs 24/7 but it would have cost me around $150 more back then. But still at 42 to 45 watts the PC running the core i5 isn't too much of a power hog. Especially when compared to the quad core AMD PC it replaced that used over 120 watts.

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post #6215 of 6235 Old 07-28-2014, 05:17 PM
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I am curious which is the currently best BR drive for ripping that is readily available?
Ideally with no or minor riplock concerns?

Thanks,
KvE

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post #6216 of 6235 Old 07-28-2014, 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
Well,....

I did some more testing and I do believe I've made a cost club sized mistake. I took my Mac Mini down to the HT and used it to view one of the MKVs I made ... it choked quite a bit here and there.

Point being a thousand dollar computer can't play back the files like a $40 Blu Ray player would.


-Brian
I think it's more illustrative of the limitations of the Mac Mini as an HTPC. Or perhaps an inadequate network (were you attempting wireless?). I have several sub-four hundred dollar PCs (latest one is a Celeron 1900) fed by a $150 Seagate NAS that all handle BluRay rips (to MKV) just fine. I also have 2 HDHomeRun Primes on the network.
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post #6217 of 6235 Old 07-28-2014, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by olyteddy View Post
I think it's more illustrative of the limitations of the Mac Mini. Or perhaps an inadequate network. I have several sub-four hundred dollar PCs (latest one is a Celeron 1900) fed by a $150 Seagate NAS that all handle BluRay rips (to MKV) just fine. I also have 2 HDHomeRun Primes on the network.
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post #6218 of 6235 Old 07-29-2014, 11:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
I did some experimenting and the results were not good. Really seems I will need a HTPC to play back the files I make correctly and even then .. I wonder.
This is a learning experience!
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Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
Point being a thousand dollar computer can't play back the files like a $40 Blu Ray player would.

I guess I should have done more homework upfront.... The idea that I could make a diy type kaliedescape type setup was tempting... And the building a library and storing a library was fine and all...

But I'm not looking forward to a $1000 HTPC that is glitchy and ultimately does almost as good as a $40 off the shelf Blu Ray player.... I used to be in for stuff like that but I don't think I can stand it anymore.

I guess,... I need some time to think this over ... But mostly I'm thinking about how difficult it will be to back out and try to return the stuff I bought.

-Brian
I know you know now that a $40 BD player cannot compete Also, a DIY kaliedescape on steroids is absolutely possible... stay patient and do your research before entering your credit card information.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
I'm triple posting now... Guess I need to look for the WD live mentioned... I need something that will playback the backed up files I made in a robust manor but without any un-needed manipulation....

I hope this can be done... I'm a bit discouraged though ... really....
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
Crisis Averted .....

I was pretty upset in my last few posts.... I tried playing back some of the ripped blu ray files and encountered all kinds of trouble...

Well,.. I finally tried playing them through the apple TV first gen I bought for $5 at a garage sale... viola! (the ATV1 now has a hardware accelerator card and CrystalBuntu ... I didn't think it could handle Blu Ray rips but It surprised me with great quality playback!)


That actually worked... Great quality... oh thank goodness.... I guess this isn't all such a waste....

-Brian
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
You seem to be skirting around the solid solutions. Get a real media player. The WDTV Live, Mede8er, Dune -- these are all established media streamers that handle full bitrate BD rips in MKV, .m2ts, .iso, whatever. You you get 1080p/24 and HD audio passthrough and you don't transcode anything to these because they play everything native. They work with DLNA servers or as direct network clients using your choice of SMB or NFS shares. I favor the WDTV Lives as I noted in my post above. They cost under $100 and beat everything in their price class unless you are into 3D in which case you go with the mede8er.

Last thing -- if you want to stream full bitrate BD's don't even think wireless.
This is solid advice. I think that once your get the server up and running (I highly highly recommend against using a mac mini for this purpose but if you chose to than I guess so be it). Then get yourself a WD live as kelson recommends.

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post #6219 of 6235 Old 07-29-2014, 03:27 PM
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Thanks,

I would prefer a non-computer solution... but a HTPC may not be bad actually.

I was very worried because I thought my Mac Mini should be very over-qualified but that's just a computer my kids use and I had not done anything to tune it before trying it.

I was happy when I found other things that worked much better. It certainly is a learning experience and I certainly did put the cart before the horse because even now I don't know exactly what I will use for playback.

Sorry to panic...
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post #6220 of 6235 Old 07-29-2014, 10:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
Thanks,

I would prefer a non-computer solution... but a HTPC may not be bad actually.

I was very worried because I thought my Mac Mini should be very over-qualified but that's just a computer my kids use and I had not done anything to tune it before trying it.

I was happy when I found other things that worked much better. It certainly is a learning experience and I certainly did put the cart before the horse because even now I don't know exactly what I will use for playback.

Sorry to panic...
Lol. No worries. It was fun for me going through the process. I would likely do things only slightly different but I am content the way my set up works. I do transcode a lot so I require a decent CPU on the server end. My HTPC is the server, yet it is extremely quiet and the Antec Solo II looks and blends incredibly well with my home theater set up. Yeah it looks like a computer but my friends and family are all blown away everytime they see what it can do. I rarely ever us the keyboard and mouse. The remote and galaxy S5 do everything I need it to do. WMC isn't that bad (I payed for it which I slightly regret) but there are just as good products out there that are cheaper (unless you go the Windows 7 route). My mom was so blown away by my HTPC capability she solicited me to piece together an old PC of mine for her living room. She now has my old gaming case with blue neon lights controlling her whole entertainment. She can access my media from my server, watch cable tv with the cableCARD we installed and of course get to her netflix and hulu through the browser/WMC.

One thing I thought of that would be particularly good for you if you just simply wanted to have a server tucked away in a closet is to go with Plex. That way you have your server tucked away next to the router, then buy either an Amazon Fire TV, Roku or even Chromecast and install the Plex app. This works very similar to Mediabrowser (practically identical) however, according to Plex's website they have a few more apps on supported devices. Plex is kinda beyond the beta stage whereas Mediabrowser3 in still between beta and production (at least as far as the app goes for Roku and other devices).

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post #6221 of 6235 Old 07-30-2014, 03:26 AM
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Red face

Quick question regarding Plex and Roku,...

Does the Roku playback the MKV directly? I assumed it was playing back a diluted (transcoded and/or compressed) version somehow.

Finally,... Thanks a million for posts directly helping me ...

-Brian
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post #6222 of 6235 Old 07-30-2014, 05:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
Quick question regarding Plex and Roku,...

Does the Roku playback the MKV directly? I assumed it was playing back a diluted (transcoded and/or compressed) version somehow.

Finally,... Thanks a million for posts directly helping me ...

-Brian
Roku can direct play mkv as of firmware 5.1. More on that: https://forums.plex.tv/index.php/top...upport-update/
Great site for encoding for Roku: http://www.rokoding.com/
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post #6223 of 6235 Old 07-30-2014, 05:59 AM
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Roku can direct play mkv as of firmware 5.1. More on that: https://forums.plex.tv/index.php/top...upport-update/
Great site for encoding for Roku: http://www.rokoding.com/
But for full bitrate BD rips does it handle all the codecs natively -- MPEG-2, H.264/AVC & VC-1 -- or is it depending on the Plex server to transcode. What about DTS-HD and True-HD passthrough.

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post #6224 of 6235 Old 07-30-2014, 06:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
Well,....



I did some more testing and I do believe I've made a cost club sized mistake. I took my Mac Mini down to the HT and used it to view one of the MKVs I made ... it choked quite a bit here and there.



Point being a thousand dollar computer can't play back the files like a $40 Blu Ray player would.



I guess I should have done more homework upfront.... The idea that I could make a diy type kaliedescape type setup was tempting... And the building a library and storing a library was fine and all...



But I'm not looking forward to a $1000 HTPC that is glitchy and ultimately does almost as good as a $40 off the shelf Blu Ray player.... I used to be in for stuff like that but I don't think I can stand it anymore.



I guess,... I need some time to think this over ... But mostly I'm thinking about how difficult it will be to back out and try to return the stuff I bought.



-Brian

I use a Mac mini as my htpc and it plays 1080 flawlessly. My files also take more processing power to decode than a bluray so something doesn't sound right with your setup. Check your codec settings?
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post #6225 of 6235 Old 07-30-2014, 06:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
Crisis Averted .....

I was pretty upset in my last few posts.... I tried playing back some of the ripped blu ray files and encountered all kinds of trouble...

Well,.. I finally tried playing them through the apple TV first gen I bought for $5 at a garage sale... viola! (the ATV1 now has a hardware accelerator card and CrystalBuntu ... I didn't think it could handle Blu Ray rips but It surprised me with great quality playback!)


That actually worked... Great quality... oh thank goodness.... I guess this isn't all such a waste....

-Brian

The reason why Apple TV, bluray players and all other hardware players play bluray so well is because they are all running dxva. Those devices would choke on my files for example due to me breaking dxva convention.
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post #6226 of 6235 Old 07-30-2014, 07:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
But for full bitrate BD rips does it handle all the codecs natively -- MPEG-2, H.264/AVC & VC-1 -- or is it depending on the Plex server to transcode. What about DTS-HD and True-HD passthrough.
MPEG-2, VC-1, DTS-HD and True-HD are not supported and will be transcoded. H.264/AVC directly ripped from a BD seems 50/50 in my experience. It might be bandwidth related on whether it gets transcoded or not. I think Roku only officially supports 12Mbps or something along those lines. x264/mkv/mp4, AC3 5.1, AAC 2.0 will direct play. DTS should passthrough but it seems to be rather unstable in mp4 and seems to work better with mkv.

If you want a streamer that will direct play HD content... the Roku isn't it.
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post #6227 of 6235 Old 07-30-2014, 11:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Hampton View Post
Quick question regarding Plex and Roku,...

Does the Roku playback the MKV directly? I assumed it was playing back a diluted (transcoded and/or compressed) version somehow.

Finally,... Thanks a million for posts directly helping me ...

-Brian
The server will definitely transcode when playing to the Roku. As a matter of fact, I have been trying to not have my server transcode when I play movies on my laptop and my gaming desktop but it seems that regardless of me being on the local network it inevitably transcodes. If I were to just access the MKV file directly through the network though (from say my laptop from my server drive) than it won't transcode. Mediabrowser states that if you have UNC paths set up in the server than the server won't stream (transcode) when utilizing the local network. So either I have something set up improperly or this is simply how it is going to work for me until server software becomes more intelligent.

Regardless, the quality is full bitrate due to the stream being over the local network.

As far as the Roku is concerned, I assume that the next gen Roku will get a huge increase in bandwidth. Perhaps it will support HEVC and server software will do the same. I do think though that even with a transode of a full bitrate MKV rip, even at 12Mbps I think you won't notice the difference in quality.

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Originally Posted by techmattr View Post
MPEG-2, VC-1, DTS-HD and True-HD are not supported and will be transcoded. H.264/AVC directly ripped from a BD seems 50/50 in my experience. It might be bandwidth related on whether it gets transcoded or not. I think Roku only officially supports 12Mbps or something along those lines. x264/mkv/mp4, AC3 5.1, AAC 2.0 will direct play. DTS should passthrough but it seems to be rather unstable in mp4 and seems to work better with mkv.

If you want a streamer that will direct play HD content... the Roku isn't it.
I don't know if this is a direct comparison but I recently experimented with a full MKV rip and an encoded MP4 file (encoded with handbrake). The settings via handbrake were set to default (20 quality factor, high profile, default audio encode). Anyhow, I played both movies while at work one day (same movie) and set the download speed to 4Mbps (my upload speed through comcast is like 5-6Mbps) and didn't notice the quality difference at all. This lead me to the conclusion that the server software (Mediabrowser) handles each file the same as far as transcoding is concerned. It literally transcoded a 28Mbps bitrate movie with DTS-HD the same as it would transode the encoded 4Mbps stereo sound movie.

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post #6228 of 6235 Old 07-30-2014, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by techmattr View Post
MPEG-2, VC-1, DTS-HD and True-HD are not supported and will be transcoded. H.264/AVC directly ripped from a BD seems 50/50 in my experience. It might be bandwidth related on whether it gets transcoded or not. I think Roku only officially supports 12Mbps or something along those lines. x264/mkv/mp4, AC3 5.1, AAC 2.0 will direct play. DTS should passthrough but it seems to be rather unstable in mp4 and seems to work better with mkv.

If you want a streamer that will direct play HD content... the Roku isn't it.
Just get a real media streamer. Like a Dune or Popcorn hour. Or one of the others.

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Just get a real media streamer. Like a Dune or Popcorn hour. Or one of the others.
Yeah. I'm not familiar with the streamers out there though so I didn't want to make a recommendation on one. I use HTPC in living room, office, downstairs and Roku in bedroom and kitchen.
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post #6230 of 6235 Old 07-30-2014, 01:51 PM
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The reason why Apple TV, bluray players and all other hardware players play bluray so well is because they are all running dxva. Those devices would choke on my files for example due to me breaking dxva convention.
DXVA is a Windows API and none of the hardware players I'm familiar with run Windows.

Although they likely have similar compatibility limitations for their hardware video decode.
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DXVA is a Windows API and none of the hardware players I'm familiar with run Windows.

Although they likely have similar compatibility limitations for their hardware video decode.

I suppose I should have been more clear and stated gpu decoding.
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Hate to change the subject, but I recently downloaded the latest version of the Handbrake nightly build and noticed that Intel Quicksync was not there (likely because I have not enabled it with the monitor settings???) and I noticed now that there is HEVC encoding... has anyone tried this? I haven't seen any talk on this yet. Is there a thread anyone knows of that is talking about this?

Theater set-up:  

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Speakers:  5.1 consists of four NHT Classic Two bookshelf and an NHT TwoC center

Sub:  PSA-XV15

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OTA antenna:  Winegard HD7698P

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Hate to change the subject, but I recently downloaded the latest version of the Handbrake nightly build and noticed that Intel Quicksync was not there (likely because I have not enabled it with the monitor settings???) and I noticed now that there is HEVC encoding... has anyone tried this? I haven't seen any talk on this yet. Is there a thread anyone knows of that is talking about this?
Looks like it's there to me:

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Looks like it's there to me:

Ok it must be because I have it disabled. I'll try enabling it... have you tried HEVC?

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Speakers:  5.1 consists of four NHT Classic Two bookshelf and an NHT TwoC center

Sub:  PSA-XV15

HTPC - ridiculously over-the-top, home-built gaming PC that I tinker with daily!

OTA antenna:  Winegard HD7698P

HDTV:  Sharp LC-60SQ15U

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jhughy2010 View Post
Ok it must be because I have it disabled. I'll try enabling it... have you tried HEVC?

Is x265 worth using yet?
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