Originally Posted by TPeterson
AFAIK, DTVCC data packets from the transport stream are not relayed via HDMI and I don't think that the old "Line 21" CC data stream makes sense there either. That's the most likely reason that your TV's CC menu is grayed out when you're watching an HDMI input.
The thing that baffles me is that my old (and far more primitive) setup did
work with CC. After the digital transition in 2009, I had to use a Zenith DTV converter box connected to my VCR with composite cables to record anything, and I also had to connect the VCR to the TV with composite cables.
If I play back a VHS tape recorded using the converter box on my HDTV, not only is the caption menu available, but it displays the captions from the tape. If such "ancient" technology works to deliver captions, it's hard to believe that there's no way to make the TViX work, especially since it records the raw transport stream and preserves the caption data. Even if the TViX can't parse the .tp file to detect the subtitles itself, you'd think that there would be a way to send the information to the TV to let it do the decoding and display instead.
It's also kind of baffling that they put so much effort into the subtitle support in the TViX by letting you change the size and position of the text (which is a feature I've never seen in another unit), yet they don't support the most basic and important source of captions for a box designed to record TV broadcasts.
To be clear, this isn't meant as some anti-TViX rant; I love my box and consider it a huge upgrade from the VCR I was using. I just find it unlikely that the difficulty in adding CC support is as high as people seem to think it is. Then again, perhaps it's due to the same firmware limitations that prevent the TViX from silently recording shows without interrupting what you're watching. One would also think that it would be easy to make a fix for that problem, but if the initialization procedure for DTV recordings was designed in such a way as to prevent it, it could take far more effort than the developers are willing to expend to fix that limitation, too.
Regarding the CCExtractor option, since raw HDTV dumps are so large, it would take a significant amount of time to transfer files from the TViX to a PC so that the subtitle data could be extracted. The only way around this that I can think of is if the TViX was connected via NFS to a computer, CCExtractor might be able to see the .tp file as though it was on a local disk, and then it could parse the file, extract the captions, and place the SRT directly on the TViX HDD without having to download the entire show from the TViX first.
If such a method would work, somebody might be able to create a CCExtractor automation program or script that would check the TViX PVR directory every X hours for new files and automatically dump the subtitles without requiring any user interaction. That would be almost as good as having native CC support, but I imagine there are other limitations that would prevent it from working, not to mention that somebody would need to create such an automation program first. It's an idea, at least. Since CCExtractor is already designed to be called from scripts, it might work in some form.