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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a ReplayTV 4504 (upgraded with a larger drive) and I want to be able to play videos that are on my PC (such as video from a camera, or produced by Windows Movie Maker etc.) on my ReplayTV. I have software called DVArchive that makes a PC mimic a ReplayTV box. It works fine. I can transfer videos from my ReplayTV and play them on my PC or save it there.


How can I go the other way, create a video on my PC in a format the ReplayTV 4504 understands and transfer it to the ReplayTV? Actually the transferring isn't a problem, my ReplayTV can see videos saved on my PC. Just producing the videos in a format the ReplayTV understands.


DVArchive uses VideoLAN VLC video player to actually play the video.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by arms /forum/post/18296243


I have a ReplayTV 4504 (upgraded with a larger drive) and I want to be able to play videos that are on my PC (such as video from a camera, or produced by Windows Movie Maker etc.) on my ReplayTV. I have software called DVArchive that makes a PC mimic a ReplayTV box. It works fine. I can transfer videos from my ReplayTV and play them on my PC or save it there.


How can I go the other way, create a video on my PC in a format the ReplayTV 4504 understands and transfer it to the ReplayTV? Actually the transferring isn't a problem, my ReplayTV can see videos saved on my PC. Just producing the videos in a format the ReplayTV understands.


DVArchive uses VideoLAN VLC video player to actually play the video.

rtvtools will create filesets (.mpg. .evt, and .ndx) that you need in order to stream shows TO your RTV. (You import the filesets into DVArchive). You cannot transfer files to the RTV. You can only stream TO the RTV.


However, you will have to have the files as mpeg-2 (no divx, mp4, h264, wma, etc.) You'll need to convert those type to mpeg2 first. ffmpeg should be able to help there.
 

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For a 45xx, you don't need the .evt file, so you can skip that step...


With WiRNS, you could actually transfer the files to the RTV, but it's probably not worth it since streaming them should be more than adequate...


Henry
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by hdonzis /forum/post/18297559


For a 45xx, you don't need the .evt file, so you can skip that step...


With WiRNS, you could actually transfer the files to the RTV, but it's probably not worth it since streaming them should be more than adequate...


Henry

Henry,


I am under the impression that rtvtools creates three files regardless. So what you are saying is that, if you are using DVA with a 4xxx box, you can discard the .evt file? Interesting.


Cheers!

-Doug
 

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Not that I've ever used rtvtools for a 4K, but since rtvtools just builds a dummy .evt file anyways, just to make the 5K happy, it's kind of irrelevant. However, reading the rtvtools readme several times, it looks to me like it only creates 5K files, not 4K files. It says that it can convert 4K files to 5K files, but there doesn't seem to be any way to create 4K files. Of course, since the name of the file is rtv5ktools.zip, maybe that should have been a hint...



According to this very old post from the very knowledgable Lee Thompson, there are no tools available for generating 4K files. However, maybe searching here on AVSForum will turn up something?


Oh, and more specifically to your question, the 4K doesn't have .evt files, so whether you put them in for DVA or not, they won't be used...


Henry
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
DVARCHIVE produces a .xml file and a .ndx file in addition to the .mpg for every video transferred from the replayTV to it. rtvconvert doesn't produce the .xml. I found an ffmpeg and rtvconvert procedure that produces something supposedly compatible with the 4504. It produced the .mpg and the .ndx, the .mpg is playable with vlc, but I haven't had a chance to try it with the replaytv yet. I don't know what to do about the missing .xml file.


Another question: I have a 3 part video from Youtube that I want to combine into a single file. How do I do this using ffmpeg (or vlc)? The docs for ffmpeg say to name the parts something like part1.mp4, part2.mp4, part3.mp4 and to do "ffmpeg -i part%d.mp4 ..." however it just complains that the file "part%d.mp4" isn't found. The doc makes it sound like it substitutes digits 1,2,3... for the "%d". This is on Windows XP.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by arms /forum/post/18300299


DVARCHIVE produces a .xml file and a .ndx file in addition to the .mpg for every video transferred from the replayTV to it. rtvconvert doesn't produce the .xml. I found an ffmpeg and rtvconvert procedure that produces something supposedly compatible with the 4504. It produced the .mpg and the .ndx, the .mpg is playable with vlc, but I haven't had a chance to try it with the replaytv yet. I don't know what to do about the missing .xml file.

That's why Doug said to import the files into DVArchive. When you use the DVA import function, it builds a rudimentary XML file...


Testing playing the MPEGs with VLC, VLC is basically going to play any MPEG-2 file. However, the Replays themselves are very particular about the MPEG-2 format. You are going to have to get the files "just right" before your 4K is going to play it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by arms /forum/post/18300299


Another question: I have a 3 part video from Youtube that I want to combine into a single file. How do I do this using ffmpeg (or vlc)? The docs for ffmpeg say to name the parts something like part1.mp4, part2.mp4, part3.mp4 and to do "ffmpeg -i part%d.mp4 ..." however it just complains that the file "part%d.mp4" isn't found. The doc makes it sound like it substitutes digits 1,2,3... for the "%d". This is on Windows XP.

I don't know anything about those, but the rtvtool rtvedit can combine mulitiple files into a single file. It is very trivial with rtvedit and is documented in the readme that I posted previously...


Henry
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I imported a video created with ffmpeg and rtvconvert into DVArchive. It accepted it. I checked the ReplayTV and it showed shows previously in DVArchive, but not the new show. I decided to play around a little. I looked at the generated .xml file and compared it to another show that worked. The old show had a "Media_Type=MPEG_43" field while the imported file said "Media_Type=MPEG_45". I guessed this was the format difference between the ReplayTV 4xxx format and the 5xxx format mentioned. So...


I changed the 45 to a 43, saved it and restarted DVArchive. Sure Enough, the ReplayTV saw the show in the menu from the PC. And sure enough, as soon as I tried to play it, it crashed!


So, it is correct that rtvconvert can't create files compatible with ReplayTV 45xx units. Does such software exist?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by arms /forum/post/18303283


I imported a video created with ffmpeg and rtvconvert into DVArchive. It accepted it. I checked the ReplayTV and it showed shows previously in DVArchive, but not the new show. I decided to play around a little. I looked at the generated .xml file and compared it to another show that worked. The old show had a "Media_Type=MPEG_43" field while the imported file said "Media_Type=MPEG_45". I guessed this was the format difference between the ReplayTV 4xxx format and the 5xxx format mentioned. So...

DVArchive doesn't really accept nor reject importing shows. It really has no idea. If you read the DVA forums, you will see that Gerry has made it very clear that DVA doesn't have any idea of the file formats or data at all and simply serves the requested files to the Replays. The XML files are purely a DVA contrivance and have nothing what so ever to do with playing the shows. As far as it importing the shows as a ReplayTV original 50xx format (version 4.5), I have no idea why it chose to do that. Maybe that's how it always imports shows or maybe it has something to do with your particular DVA configuration...

Quote:
Originally Posted by arms /forum/post/18303283


I changed the 45 to a 43, saved it and restarted DVArchive. Sure Enough, the ReplayTV saw the show in the menu from the PC. And sure enough, as soon as I tried to play it, it crashed!

You can change the file type from within DVA from editing the show properties and then you don't need to restart DVA. However, as I said above, DVA just serves whatever files the RTV asks for, so if the files aren't 4K format, the 4K isn't going to like it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by arms /forum/post/18303283


So, it is correct that rtvconvert can't create files compatible with ReplayTV 45xx units. Does such software exist?

This is what I posted above:

Quote:
Originally Posted by hdonzis /forum/post/18299673


According to this very old post from the very knowledgable Lee Thompson, there are no tools available for generating 4K files. However, maybe searching here on AVSForum will turn up something?

Henry
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by hdonzis /forum/post/18303548


DVArchive doesn't really accept nor reject importing shows. It really has no idea. If you read the DVA forums, you will see that Gerry has made it very clear that DVA doesn't have any idea of the file formats or data at all and simply serves the requested files to the Replays. The XML files are purely a DVA contrivance and have nothing what so ever to do with playing the shows. As far as it importing the shows as a ReplayTV original 50xx format (version 4.5), I have no idea why it chose to do that. Maybe that's how it always imports shows or maybe it has something to do with your particular DVA configuration...

I know, I'm guessing that DVArchive broadcast the file type in the .XML file to the ReplayTV, and it ignored the show since it couldn't play it. When I had it lie about the type, ReplayTV saw and displayed the show as playable.





Quote:
This is what I posted above:

Thanks for the link, I did see it before. I was hoping against hope that someone else reading this knew of some conversion SW. Esp. since the post was old.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by arms /forum/post/18304382


I know, I'm guessing that DVArchive broadcast the file type in the .XML file to the ReplayTV, and it ignored the show since it couldn't play it. When I had it lie about the type, ReplayTV saw and displayed the show as playable.

Well, kinda... DVArchive can basically communicate with 4Ks running version 4.3 firmware, 50xxs running version 4.5 firmware, and 5Ks running version 5. firmware. The way it works, a remote Replay asks for DVA's guide snapshot (all it's shows and recording schedules) and DVA responds to that particular Replay will all the shows that match that Replay's firmware version. So, it isn't up to the Replay to decide which show is good or not. The Replays don't network that way in the first place. 4Ks only network with 4Ks because only 4Ks answer the guide snapshot request. So, when DVA has some 4K shows, then it also simply answers a 4K guide snapshot request with only those shows. So, whatever shows are in the guide snapshot which is the correct version guide snapshot for that Replay, then the Replay just assumes that they are the correct format shows. At that point, the remote Replay is simply a server and serves up file requests that the other Replay requests. The show data is simply sent, although there are obviously some file position manipulation capabilities, which is what allows the normal Replay viewing features. There's really nothing very magic about it. As far as ReplayTV is concerned, it is talking to another same model unit, so there isn't anything special that needs to be done. It wasn't their intent or vision to allow some kind of PC server that might have some other format shows to serve...


Henry
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Looks like I guessed who makes the decision to display the show wrong. Anyway, I often work with computer client-server software, this doesn't sound much different.


I asked my question in the planetreplay.com board, in the unlikely chance someone there knows of such a conversion program. I'm not holding my breath... Thanks for pointing out that board to me.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by arms /forum/post/18306808


Looks like I guessed who makes the decision to display the show wrong. Anyway, I often work with computer client-server software, this doesn't sound much different.

The biggest difference is that in the client-server world, both ends aren't necessarily under control. Since ReplayTV invented their networking protocol for their own purposes, they had no reason to even consider making it compatible with anything else, so they went with the simplest thing possible. Not like the NetBIOS protocol that is used in Windows and such that allows networking of PCs, Macs, Unixes, etc...


Henry
 

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Ive been trying to play videos on a 4k for about a year. I havn't suceeded yet but I think there's hope.

Ive narrowed the problem down to 2 culprits 1 orientation 2 bitrate .

first download "mpeg validator" (a freeware mpeg stream analizer)

download at " http://www.videohelp.com/tools/MPEG_Validator "

it goes far more into detail than vlc or ffmpeg.

based on the results (1.orietation the video stream out of ffmpeg is always 0.0 while the original 4k mpegs have the video stream as 0.1 and the audio stream as 0.0.

the windows version of ffmpeg always sets the video stream as 0.0 and the audio stream as 0.1 there is no way around this that i know.

except the mac 0sx version( and the linux i suppose.) support stream swapping to fix this!

However i don't think this is the problem because parts of a frame is displayed of the PC video meaning it wolud play if it could. (i mite be wrong but i don't have a mac to test this)

2. all the Mpegs i've been able to make with ffmpeg utilize vbr aka variable bitrate while the 4k uses cbr aka consistent bitrate.

i've tried to make cbr mpegs but have consistently failed mpeg validator always said it was vbr.

for me the files Ive converted have always played for a few seconds before scrambling on one test i used this a batch file for use with 5ks.

@echo off

REM -- Convert from FLV to MPEG-2

ffmpeg -i "%~1".flv -target ntsc-svcd -acodec mp2 -ar 48000 -ab 192 -ac 2 "%~1".mpeg


REM -- Convert from MPEG-2 to Replay-MPG

rtvconvert "%~1".mpeg %~1".mpg


doit HeroesS1E2


the audio was fine but the video still scrambled .

however i tried this same batch on another flv i had handy (the first part of "a charlie brown valentine" from youtube) and on this ocasion it played near perfectly for nearly a minute before scrambling.

I believe bitrate is the culprit.


I have 2 replays located in 2 states i have been using bitvise tunneler and realvnc to blindly schedule using dva remote control in state a and file transfer to state b.

on a few such occasions while transfering the mpeg it would get corrupted and play much like the mpegs converted from youtube.

i reciently downloaded a program from vritual4k.com (now gone but on internet archive)

called timefix.exe it said it was used to clean mpegs that were damaged wile being downloaded with dva.

i tried this on a youtube convert and it said the stream was not damaged.


meaning that the broken time on the 4k mpeg eventualy caused the video to go out of sync with the audio .

i think the youtube converts did the same because the vbr stream sped up and slowed with releation to the audio stream and caused the replaytv to crash.


I think if a cbr mpeg could be created it would play fine


hope this helps you may need to use something else other than ffmpeg like tmpgenc or someting else (note i was using an old version of ffmpeg from 04


here is the other batch i wrote that i thought mite fix the cbr problem but didn't (it might work if i wrote it better?).


ffmpeg -i "input.flv" -vcodec mpeg2video -s 352x480 -b 1820K -minrate 1820K -maxrate 1820K -acodec mp2 -ar 48000 -ab 192 -ac 2 "output.mpeg"

its for standard quality by the way.

hope it helps!!
 
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