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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so I've got two 5040s on a wired cat5e network connected by 10/100 Mbps switch. The length of patch cable connecting the two is ~100ft. I tried to be as careful as possible when running this cable through my attic to avoid interference from power cables and such.


So, streaming works. It is pretty damn cool, however, without fail if I am watching a show from another RTV I inevitably get the occasional stutter/looping or just a black screen and "video temporarily unavailable" message. I would say this happens at least once per streamed show up to maybe 2 or three times.


Is this just a fact of life when streaming? Or are there some network hardware tweeks that might minimize/illiminate these little hicoughs.?
 

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It is pretty darn cool. I have found I get the best results streaming from one machine to another if the other machine isn't doing much of anything.


1) Make sure the other machine is off if possible.

2) If possible, avoid streaming when the other machine is recording.
 

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In my experience this is normal - the "video temporarily unavailable" (VTU) that is. Even with a very short (6 ') cat5 cable and no network activity I would see an occasional VTU, but don't recall any stutter/looping. Also I found it interesting that it would happen much more frequently from DVA -> RTV than RTV -> RTV which sort of indicates that perhaps the "source" of the video stream is responsible for controlling the stream.

I never tried eliminating the router from the picture to see if that helped any.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well, hopefully this little quirk is addressable with software updates. Perhaps if the receiving replay could buffer a little of the streamed signal, that would minimize these little problems.


As for turning replays on and off to facillitate streaming, I have read about that before, but I don't think you should have to run downstairs to turn off a replay every time you want to stream to the upstairs unit.


I am very forgiving of technology quirks, but my wife and the rest of the family are not so forgiving. Every time the stuttering or VTU happens, I get a a "Hey what is going on?!" from the rest of the audience.
 

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It definitely depends on the quality of the video that you're streaming. Standard is the easiest to stream, high the hardest.


Live TV is the most processor intensive thing that the replay does (it is encoding AND decoding high quality). So, watching live tv and then streaming a high quality show to another replay may cause stuttering (on the receiving machine).


I've had no problem, however, watching live tv and streaming medium or standard quality (or watching a high quality show and streaming a high quality show).


(Edit: Turn off the dang thing when you aren't using it! We don't leave our cars turned on all the time, or toasters, or anything else for that matter. There are very few pieces of machinery that were designed to be left on 24/7/365.)
 

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I stream HIGH quality between a 5080 (family room) and a 5040 (bedroom) through CAT5e via a Netgear RT314 router and never have any issues (no hicoughs or dropouts).


The streaming machine is usually switched on and even occasionally recording - it is therefore entirely possible to get a seamless high quality streaming experience.


Damaged CAT5 can be an issue and rebooting both 5xxx's AND the router can help if you are running into issues.


Ironically, I *cannot* stream as easily from the 5080 to my PC on the same network using DVArchive - I have tried everything (upgraded network card, changed RWIN settings etc).


For this to work I have to have the 5080 doing nothing and switched off.


The mysteries of networks ...
 

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Don't overlook the cables and connectors. CAT5 is finicky, and to meet specs you have to be meticulous. Play it safe and use quality cables with connectors. Avoid rolling your own unless you know what you're doing.
 

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I agree with the cables, just cuz they work doesn't mean there aren't problems. TCP/IP is ment to be able to handle errors, if your line has problems there will be errors. You can use your PC to check for this stuff with perfmon and streaming a show with DVA. Check the TCP/IP connection and watch the error count. Your errors should be 0.


I also think the comments on the workload of the server and record quality are very important. I don't usually record above medium, my sources are very clean and I've trained myself to ignore the compression artifacts. The server being off and not currently recording (live or scheduled)


The replayTV's load is very important, I can have a high quality show stream fine if the server is off, but if the server is one there's problems. Just short little ones, but they exist. The server should be off and not currently recording, it's also helpful to have the client not recording a show in the backgound.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by MethodMachine



As for turning replays on and off to facillitate streaming, I have read about that before, but I don't think you should have to run downstairs to turn off a replay every time you want to stream to the upstairs unit.
If you have a computer with DVArchive in the room you are watching TV in, you could use it to turn the machine downstairs off.


Just a thought...
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Creech
1) Make sure the other machine is off if possible.
This is the most important I've found. I can stream a HQ program from a Replay that is recording HQ at the time. But if it's on and also playing back HQ (which is what happens when you're watching live), then you'll be much more prone to stuttering in your streaming.
 

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Coincidentally I just found another issue to watch for - after running DVA on my PC and exiting the app I later noticed my Replays weren't streaming smoothly (Replay --> Replay).


After a few unsuccessul experiments I rebooted my PC and tried again and everything was then fine.


Not implying there is a bug in DVA necessarily but there may be network services still running after DVA quits that could interfere with the streaming performance on Replays sharing the same network.


Bottom line - reboot your PC if you're having streaming problems - worth a try at least since it worked for me.
 

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so i'm wondering if anyone else has this problem: do your networked ReplayTVs ever lose track of other units? Every once in a while, one or both of my 50xx units will no longer see the other (i.e. doesn't show up in the ReplayGuide), so I have to either "renew" the IP address in net setup or do a soft reboot. sometimes more than once. there doesn't appear to be any way to force a unit to look again on the net for a peer. I thought I read somewhere that the boxes do this periodically anyway.


One of my 50xx's is actually on an 802.11g network, so it's possible that's the culprit.


for me this happens about once a week. anyone else have this issue?
 

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eelpout,

I had the same problems you have described on my wireless network with the the 50XX units. I tried several different combinations of settings, bridges, wap's etc and finally have a setup that has worked flawlessly for several weeks now.


First I set the IP address's manually on the both RTVs. I have two Linksys WAP54G set to operate in the bridge mode and use a different channel than my other WAPs. One RTV is hard wired , cat 5, to the network through a 4 port 10/100 switch , and one WAP54G set up in bridge mode. The second RTV is hooked up directly to the second WAG54G set up in the bridge mode.


This setup steams all video, yes even shows recorded on high, with no breakups or stuttering and I do not lose the communication between the replays like before which is the same as you described.


Rusty
 

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hey Rusty,


sounds like we have similar setups, I'm also using WAP54G's.


yeah, I had manual IP's for a while as well, then I changed away from them for some reason which I can't remember. might have been a DNS change at my ISP and manual network setup on Replay is annoying with their interface (especially if one is lazy ;) ). guess it's time to try that way again. thanks.
 
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