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Home content distribution - HDMI matrix VS Media Streaming

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
Hello boys and girls,

I am in the proccess of building my new humble 300 square meters house and i am planning for video distribution.

Initially i was planning for an 8x8 HDMI matrix switch BUT after some extensive reading i came to the conclusion that this would be a very expensive solution and i would not always get the best video/audio quality for every individual room. (least common resolution and least common audio).

After hours of internet searching i have decided to follow a different approach but i don't know if its fully achievable.

6 sources (PS3, XBOX, Satellite, BluRay, PC; either stored movies or desktop sharing, Camcoder, etc)
5 destinations (master bedroom 1920x1080 DTS audio, Main TV 1920x1080 TrueHD audio, Bedroom1 720p stereo sound, Bedroom 2 1080p stereo sound, Office 1920x1200 stereo)

Build a high specced PC with HDMI capture cards 1080p 60hz audio passthough or 5.1 or TrueHD Sound (HDCP not an issue with HDFury IV)
Buy a media player/ android stick or other cheap front end for every room
Transcode and live stream to any destination at best possible settings for every room

I have not found an HDMI capture card that has 1080p 60hz and at least 5.1DTS
I have not found a transcoding server software with DLNA capabilities for streaming live from the capture cards or already stored content on the PC

After so many hours searching google i am really going mad! Any gurus out there? Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeelp!
post #2 of 3
So If I understand you correctly you are looking to take those sources and be able to rout them to any of the display devices (with audio). If that's the case I would definitely recommend going with a HDMI matrix. If you do a little research you'll see there are matrix boxes out there that have baluns built in. So you run CAT5e / CAT6 to your locations from the head end and put balun receivers to your locations. They will definetly be able to handle 1080P, DTS-HD ect. without a problem. Most of these baluns hace bi-directional Ir so you don't need to go with a fancy control system to make everything work. I just think that if you rely on a PC and software to do the heavy lifting that will lead to problem.

Then purchase inexpensive blu-ray players for your locations so you can play a movie locally and stream. Make sure you get a player that has discrete power codes so if you decide to use pc-programable remotes (urc) they you'll have pull control.

If your not sure what to do yet, just make sure you run multiple CAT5e and / or CAT6 cables to your locations then go from there.
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your reply.
My problem is not the actual wiring. I am aware of the HDMI transmission though Cat 5/6 and the ability for bi-directional IR control.
The problem i have with HDMI matrix switches is that not all rooms have the same resolution displays or sound. If i want to watch a bluray in the master bedroom at 1920x1080 5.1dts and in room1 720p stereo that is not possible with a matrix switch since the transmission will be converted to the maximum common specs. In this case the master bedroom will receive 720p stereo sound.

Another possible way is to transmit 1080p and HDAudio to all rooms and use downscalers for both video and audio to match the settings for every individual room.

Using the transcoding method that i am describing on the original post though, will allow me to stream the live content on my mobile devices and tablets as well.

The bitter conclusion is that the HDMI spec was not built having complex integrations in mind. Let's hope HDMI 2.0 fixes some of these issues.
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