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Help streaming blu-ray content.

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Guys,

We just moved to a new apartment in California (from Seattle) and are setting things up. Already run into a roadblock with my media server networking.

I have an HTPC (intel sandy-bridge core i5 / 4 Ghz) where I store all my media. HD MKV's, M2TS, DVD ISO's & full BD ISO's, amongst other HD & non-HD content. Content ranges from 10mbps to 40mbps. This is setup in my home theater room.

I also have the dune smart D1 that we keep in the bedroom which streams media content from the media server so we can play all our content in the bedroom.

In Seattle I was using Netgear MoCA adapters to stream content from the media server to the dune smart D1. I have two gigabit NIC cards in the htpc and one was dedicated to streaming out data to the dune smart D1.

In my California apartment, much to my shock & horror, I discovered that there is only one coaxial outlet - in the living room. There is no coaxial outlet in the bedroom. This means MoCA is no longer an option.

I have tried d-link 500 mbps powerline adapters in the past but they don't seem to stream anything above 10 mbps successfully, so they are not an option either.

The way rooms are, I can't successfully run an ethernet cable without it literally running on the floor in our feet.

So basically, I'm looking for a non-MoCa, non-Ethernet networking option that will allow me to stream HD Blu-ray content from my htpc to my dune smart d1 in the bedroom.

The distance is about 26 feet, same level.

I haven't heard of powerline adapters faster then 500 mbps in the market; and I dont know of wifi being able to play stutter-free blu-ray content.

Can anyone (possibly in similar situation who successfully implemented a solution) suggest possible solutions to try?

Thanks!!
post #2 of 17
How old is your apartment? The apartments I've rented before had coaxial in every room. Unless you moved to a section 8 apartment complex.

I don't think you'll have any other option than power line. Unless you go with an external hard drive enclosure.
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GusGus748s View Post

How old is your apartment? The apartments I've rented before had coaxial in every room. Unless you moved to a section 8 apartment complex.

I don't think you'll have any other option than power line. Unless you go with an external hard drive enclosure.

I have no idea how old the apartments are; this is our first time in California. This is in Burbank, and in a pretty decent neighborhood. To give you an idea, I'm paying more for rent for this two bedroom 900 sq. ft. apartment then I was paying mortgage for my 4 bedroom 2,600 sq. ft. home in Seattle. And the kicker is, the unit we got is one of the "renovated" units.

Even we have never seen an apartment or property without a coaxial in every room before. Nuts!!

Anyhow, I'm looking at this netgear powerline kit, XAVB5004, but I'm getting conflicting feedback so not sure. Looking for more solutions.

Thanks.
post #4 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by mickey79 View Post

Anyhow, I'm looking at this netgear powerline kit, XAVB5004, but I'm getting conflicting feedback so not sure. Looking for more solutions.
Powerline adapters may or may not work for you -- that is the best anyone can say. Go to smallnetbuilder.com and look at their powerline ratings chart and read the reviews for the AV500 adapter roundup. He does a nice test where he plugs the second adapter into different outlets in his house, including the "same socket" test so you can see the full entitlement you would get -- always much less than the marketing rating.

Bottom line -- All the brands of AV500 are basically the same performance; AV200 are more consistent in the speed/throughput they deliver no matter where they are plugged but are too slow to stream the highest bitrate BluRay rips; AV500 can deliver BluRay streaming speeds, but their throughput varies a lot depending on where they are plugged and in the worst case are no better than AV200.

And from personal experience, a marginal AV500 connection may not be able to deliver BluRay streaming via SMB windows shares but can deliver it using DLNA.
post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by mickey79 View Post

Anyhow, I'm looking at this netgear powerline kit, XAVB5004, but I'm getting conflicting feedback so not sure. Looking for more solutions.
Powerline adapters may or may not work for you -- that is the best anyone can say. Go to smallnetbuilder.com and look at their powerline ratings chart and read the reviews for the AV500 adapter roundup. He does a nice test where he plugs the second adapter into different outlets in his house, including the "same socket" test so you can see the full entitlement you would get -- always much less than the marketing rating.

Bottom line -- All the brands of AV500 are basically the same performance; AV200 are more consistent in the speed/throughput they deliver no matter where they are plugged but are too slow to stream the highest bitrate BluRay rips; AV500 can deliver BluRay streaming speeds, but their throughput varies a lot depending on where they are plugged and in the worst case are no better than AV200.

And from personal experience, a marginal AV500 connection may not be able to deliver BluRay streaming via SMB windows shares but can deliver it using DLNA.

I will definitely give the smallnetbuilder.com a good read and see if I can pick up something; but other then that what you've stated is verbatim what I've found out through all my research, and from my own past experience, I'm quite pessimistic the powerline solution will work for me.

That said, I'm not familiar with DLNA; is that something I can implement in my setup via software/hardware? Or is it a proprietary technology I have to purchase?

Thanks!
post #6 of 17
Compressed MP4 1080 BD rips work for me using the Netgears.
post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by mickey79 View Post

I will definitely give the smallnetbuilder.com a good read and see if I can pick up something; but other then that what you've stated is verbatim what I've found out through all my research, and from my own past experience, I'm quite pessimistic the powerline solution will work for me.

That said, I'm not familiar with DLNA; is that something I can implement in my setup via software/hardware? Or is it a proprietary technology I have to purchase?

Thanks!
DLNA is a simple streaming protocol. Your NAS unit has to support it or the PC you are using as a media server has to be running a DLNA server program on it like Serviio or Mezzmo.
post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by mickey79 View Post

I will definitely give the smallnetbuilder.com a good read and see if I can pick up something; but other then that what you've stated is verbatim what I've found out through all my research, and from my own past experience, I'm quite pessimistic the powerline solution will work for me.

That said, I'm not familiar with DLNA; is that something I can implement in my setup via software/hardware? Or is it a proprietary technology I have to purchase?

Thanks!
DLNA is a simple streaming protocol. Your NAS unit has to support it or the PC you are using as a media server has to be running a DLNA server program on it like Serviio or Mezzmo.

Running a DLNA server program on my htpc won't be an issue; but I'm 'serving' media files to the Dune Smart D1 ... I don't know if that supports DLNA or not.
post #9 of 17
I sorta have the same question. Im NOT trying to hijack your thread just curious. If you use a powerline adapter, you have to run ethernet to the outlet. Which equals wires on the floor. Im not sure the Western Digital Live box is any better solution. Couldnt you just buy a cheap p.c. $300 ish, put a video card with HDMI out, connect that to your tv and share all your files from your media server? No wires, all wireless and you can send all data, just in case someone wants to browse the web or something in a diff. room. Just a curious thought?
post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rlhaudio View Post

I sorta have the same question. Im NOT trying to hijack your thread just curious. If you use a powerline adapter, you have to run ethernet to the outlet. Which equals wires on the floor. Im not sure the Western Digital Live box is any better solution. Couldnt you just buy a cheap p.c. $300 ish, put a video card with HDMI out, connect that to your tv and share all your files from your media server? No wires, all wireless and you can send all data, just in case someone wants to browse the web or something in a diff. room. Just a curious thought?

The whole problem is bandwidth over powerline/wifi/etc. The content I'm talking about is anywhere between 10mbps to 40 mbps. This includes HD MKV's to BD ISO's. The issue isn't a device related issue - I already have the htpc & dune smart d1 in place; it's about streaming this 10 ~ 40 mbps high bitrate data stutter free over non-ethernet / non-moca network.

And there's a big difference between running a wire from your desk to the powerline in the wall socket under your desk or tv console - and running a wire across your family room through the hallway into your bedroom.
post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rlhaudio View Post

I understand you have everything in place but if your having bandwidth problems cant you just elimate that issue buy playing a cheap pc with hdmi out? pcs are wireless now so no wires to deal with and bandwidth wouldnt be an issue. you would run the movie from the pc to the tv or over your wireless network which should offer faster bandwidth. unless the wireless router is to slow. maybe im misunderstanding something.

I'm not sure if you're understanding this correctly.

I have an htpc in my living room - projector - receiver - the whole works; a home theater basically. This htpc has about 10 TB of drives installed; all my media (movies, tv shows, etc) is on it. About 8 TB of media.

I simply want to play the same media in my bedroom when I want to, streaming it off my htpc. It doesn't make sense to spend an additional $300 or so to put another pc in the bedroom and copy my media to it. I already have the dune player which streams media very nicely from the htpc and plays all formats.

Even if I had 2 pc's, wifi is unable to stream high bitrate content stutter free. Dune does support wifi adapter so pc wouldnt be needed anyways. Moca is the closest I got to a solution, which I can't use in my current unit due to lack of coax connections.
post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 
I just noticed something you mentioned, "bandwidth wouldn't be an issue". That's not true. Wifi, even with the best routers or adapters, N band 5Ghz and all, is unable to stream BD ISO's with over 30+ mbps bitrate video stutter free. I have seen it work in some odd cases, but mostly it starts stuttering easy before that bitrate.
post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by mickey79 View Post

Running a DLNA server program on my htpc won't be an issue; but I'm 'serving' media files to the Dune Smart D1 ... I don't know if that supports DLNA or not.

Just look under UPnP on the Dune (unless they've changed the title) and you will see it, DLNA is just a variant of UPnP. DLNA does not support disc images so all media must in a standalone container in other words avi, mp4, mkv you get the idea.

As someone mentioned earlier not all powerline adapters are equal, the smallnetbuilder site powerline benchmarks are worth a look, Zyxel make some of the best performing ones conditions permitting.
Quote:
I just noticed something you mentioned, "bandwidth wouldn't be an issue". That's not true. Wifi, even with the best routers or adapters, N band 5Ghz and all, is unable to stream BD ISO's with over 30+ mbps bitrate video stutter free. I have seen it work in some odd cases, but mostly it starts stuttering easy before that bitrate.

True, although the new 802.11ac standard might be able to pull it off conditions permitting but it is a gamble and you would need to purchase an 802.11ac router or access point and an 802.11ac bridge, the Netgear R6300 can double as both (review worth a read too). You will also want to use UPnP/DLNA going over wireless as well.
post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alx330 View Post

Just look under UPnP on the Dune (unless they've changed the title) and you will see it, DLNA is just a variant of UPnP. DLNA does not support disc images so all media must in a standalone container in other words avi, mp4, mkv you get the idea.

As someone mentioned earlier not all powerline adapters are equal, the smallnetbuilder site powerline benchmarks are worth a look, Zyxel make some of the best performing ones conditions permitting.
True, although the new 802.11ac standard might be able to pull it off conditions permitting but it is a gamble and you would need to purchase an 802.11ac router or access point and an 802.11ac bridge, the Netgear R6300 can double as both (review worth a read too). You will also want to use UPnP/DLNA going over wireless as well.

If DLNA doesn't support images (ISO), then that's out for me. I have too many ISO's in my media library - and considering streaming to bedroom is a secondary use of the htpc, as everything plays just fine in the home theater using MediaPortal GUI, I don't see any reason to change it. So smb/upnp will have to be it.

You're right about 802.11ac, it may be able to pull it off -- but it's too new of a technology and before I invest in it as a "solution", I'd like to see real world results & tests and get considerable response on streaming Blu-ray over 802.11ac stutter free. There's some time to go before that happens.

I looked at smallnetbuilder and didn't see a big difference in throughput between the d-link powerline adapters I have and the ones listed, including Zykel, so I doubt I'll get different performance by buying a new pair.

Right now i'm still at a brick wall.
post #15 of 17
NFS would be another option which is faster than SMB without sacrificing ISO support although setting up NFS shares on Windows is not at all easy. There are guides out there on the net that can help.
post #16 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alx330 View Post

NFS would be another option which is faster than SMB without sacrificing ISO support although setting up NFS shares on Windows is not at all easy. There are guides out there on the net that can help.

I have worked with NFS before so setting them up is not an issue for me; and you're correct, NFS is faster then smb, however that's still not enough to circumvent the bandwidth issue. Powerline or Wifi will still be the bottleneck.

I'm trying to look into some cable management options to see if it's at all possible for me to run ethernet, perhaps through ceiling corners or something, considering I'm hitting a dead wall with the bandwidth issue. It doesn't look like powerline or wifi (n) can solve my problem.
post #17 of 17
Thread Starter 
So I just wanted to write in an update, I ended up using an ethernet cable since none of the non-lan options were working out. Got these wire-nails that helped run the wire nice & neat across the ceiling edges.

Worked absolutely perfect; able to stream full BD ISO's @ 40+ Mb/s bit rates, no issues, from htpc to dune smart d1.

Thanks.

Sent from my SCH-I605 using Tapatalk 2
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