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jimi
Posted: Sun Nov 24, 2019 9:56 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 29 Mar 2006 Posts: 200
cuthbert wrote:
Testing update. I managed to find a quick way to download and use all channel logos.

Also, regarding power consumption, the whole setup runs at on 6 W now, even when doing multiple recordings. That's if your storage takes the form of a memory stick. With an external spinning disk it is more like 12W.


Excellent, 12w is nothing, less than the Toppy and I'm happy with it's power consumption

cuthbert wrote:

I've written this procedure explaining how to build a similar setup:
http://unixetc.co.uk/2019/11/22/how-to-watch-and-record-live-tv-with-a-raspberry-pi/
Jim.


I've just a quick scan of your article, looks super, very comprehensive. I'll definitely be having a play with this setup on my Pi although I possibly won't have time until after Christmas/New Year.

Jimi

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shenson
Posted: Tue Nov 26, 2019 4:34 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 11 Apr 2005 Posts: 569
cuthbert wrote:

I've written this procedure explaining how to build a similar setup:
http://unixetc.co.uk/2019/11/22/how-to-watch-and-record-live-tv-with-a-raspberry-pi/


That's very interesting. I wondered if a Pi was up to the job of being a Toppy replacement. I may well look into that when mine is finally retired.

Regarding a remote control. In the past I've managed to get HDMI-CEC to work as a remote control for Kodi it has the advantage of not needing any new hadrware at all. YMMV on that though.

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munk
Posted: Fri Nov 29, 2019 4:34 pm Reply with quote
Regular contributor Joined: 16 May 2006 Posts: 63
shenson wrote:
cuthbert wrote:

I've written this procedure explaining how to build a similar setup:
http://unixetc.co.uk/2019/11/22/how-to-watch-and-record-live-tv-with-a-raspberry-pi/


That's very interesting. I wondered if a Pi was up to the job of being a Toppy replacement. I may well look into that when mine is finally retired.

Regarding a remote control. In the past I've managed to get HDMI-CEC to work as a remote control for Kodi it has the advantage of not needing any new hadrware at all. YMMV on that though.


Yes I'm also spurred on by cuthbert's post / article / site to look into the Raspberry Pi for DVR duties, or if not for DVR duty then as a conduit for file transfers to / from the MyStuff. Despite being into Unix OS stuff for a long time I never got around to trying out the Pi, it always seemed like a solution for a niche problem that I'd never had (or at least 'never knew I had', I'm sure if I thought about it there would have been something or other I could have used the Pi for in the past!).

I don't know if it's been mentioned on this forum before (edit: google says 'no'!) but I've been testing out a SiliconDust HDHomeRun network dual tuner with Plex as an 'alternative' DVR solution. The HDHomeRun is a dedicated / standalone network tv tuner - it's a tiny 15x100x100mm box with 3 inputs: one for power, one for a TV aerial and one for a network cable. Once hooked up, you connect to the unit via the local network using either their own client or a suitable 3rd party client (I used Plex which is hosted on a FreeBSD box, although I believe you can use TV HeadEnd which cuthbert mentioned or something like VLC on a windows host). It's a very basic system, the hardware itself does nothing really other than decode a TV signal and transmit it out onto the network. It's down to other software hosted on host machines to perform EPG / recording / playback duties.

I found several issues with this HDHomeRun setup though. Using it on the same network as as a Powerline network link introduced network interference which was a real headache to diagnose / work around. Basically I had to run a very long CAT5 cable directly to/from the homerun/router, rather than use the powerline network which would have been a lot easier.

Also at the time I was testing it out, Plex was not working so well with the homerun... I had thought it would be ideal to be able to fire up Plex on my phone, browse through an EPG on Plex and schedule recordings that I could then watch later over the network on one of the connected smart TVs or HTPCs / PCs in Plex. However unfortunately at that time the Plex smartphone app had no EPG functionality, and even the Plex web /desktop app EPGs weren't always as reliable as they could have been in various respects.

Since then I believe the phone app now has an EPG, so it might be worth a look again, although for me the bigger issue is getting a dedicated TV feed in to the homerun - that was the biggest stumbling block for me, the homerun seemed to need a really solid TV signal to work at even the most basic level, so a new aerial would be required to make it work for me at least.

In the end I ditched the HDHomeRun and haven't used it for the last few months. MyStuff is still my primary DVR solution and gets used for about 4-6hrs of recording per day. Short of the SD signal being cancelled I don't envisage moving from Toppy / MyStuff soon, although that said I do keep thinking about investing in an OpenVix box but there never seems to be a really compelling offering to dive in to. Maybe I should just go for a cheap and cheerful vix option just to test the waters.


As an aside, just out of curiosity can you watch live TV via a network connection on an OpenVix DVR? ie in an upstairs bedroom, fire up the PC and be able to watch live TV on the zgemma (or whatever) box downstairs in the living room?

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alan_m
Posted: Fri Nov 29, 2019 5:59 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 18 Oct 2006 Posts: 3520
munk wrote:

As an aside, just out of curiosity can you watch live TV via a network connection on an OpenVix DVR? ie in an upstairs bedroom, fire up the PC and be able to watch live TV on the zgemma (or whatever) box downstairs in the living room?


Yes, you can watch live TV on a networked device and simultaneously a second, different, live TV program on the TV directly connected to the box - assuming you have enough free tuners (not being used for a recording at the same time)

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munk
Posted: Fri Nov 29, 2019 6:13 pm Reply with quote
Regular contributor Joined: 16 May 2006 Posts: 63
alan_m wrote:
munk wrote:

As an aside, just out of curiosity can you watch live TV via a network connection on an OpenVix DVR? ie in an upstairs bedroom, fire up the PC and be able to watch live TV on the zgemma (or whatever) box downstairs in the living room?


Yes, you can watch live TV on a networked device and simultaneously a second, different, live TV program on the TV directly connected to the box - assuming you have enough free tuners (not being used for a recording at the same time)


Smile cheers

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cuthbert
Posted: Mon Jan 13, 2020 7:12 pm Reply with quote
Regular contributor Joined: 13 Oct 2006 Posts: 94
Testing update of Raspberry Pi solution.

My Rpi setup is finished now, and has been running alongside the Toppy for a couple of months. Both have their advantages. The RPi is quicker (no waiting for it to boot, it runs constantly), more responsive and has HD capability. The Toppy is somewhat easier to use and prettier with its bright, cheerful colours and excellent remote control. Other than that, both systems are pretty equal.

Pi setup consists of:

- a Pi 2
- Dual SD/HD Terrestrial Freeview Tuner
- a "flirc" for remote control
- storage for recordings: an external SD card, 512 GB.

- full details on above blog article.

Regarding storage, I chose an SD card where most people would probably go for a spinning disk. For the same money, about £65, you could have a 4 GB spinner. I like the SD card for its total silence and immediate response. Also I got a bit obsessed with low power consumption. The whole setup runs at about 5.5 W.

As time passes, prices will drop and I can upgrade eg. by adding another dual tuner (currently £63) and perhaps extra storage, easy upgrades being an advantage of the DIY solution.

I was able to watch TV remotely on a recent holiday in Northumberland, on my phone, tablet and on the TV in the holiday house (to which I connected another Pi, running Kodi).

Unfortunately a data error on the SD card meant that watching recordings remotely wasn't possible. I later traced the error to an incompatibility in, of all things, the external SD card reader holding the 512 GB card. Yes, SD card readers have their own internal hardware and firmware and this one, branded EasyACC, couldn't cope with the Pi's internal bus simultaneously conducting both USB and network traffic. A simple fix was to replace it with a more modern unit from Beikell.

Jim

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YorkshireJumbo
Posted: Tue Jan 14, 2020 11:20 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 16 Sep 2005 Posts: 794
Interesting - thanks

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Laser
Posted: Wed Jan 15, 2020 3:18 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 10 Jan 2008 Posts: 439
cuthbert wrote:
My Rpi setup is finished now, and has been running alongside the Toppy for a couple of months. Both have their advantages.

First of all, thank you for a very well written article guiding the installation of the necessary software for the Pi. Cool

This is potentially of considerable interest to me, but I would appreciate if you could answer some burning questions:

1) The one MyStuff feature that I really want on another platform is the ability to have searches. They don't have to be as comprehensive, but I value the ability to leave it continually looking for a particular programme or keyword so I don't have to manually search or spot it in the EPG. Does your set-up support this?

2) Earlier in this thread was a discussion of not recording repeat episodes. Can I infer from that the system supports series links?

3) Can recording padding be configured? Or does it force you to trust the transmitted timing markers?

4) I already have a Raspberry Pi 2B running LibreELEC Kodi, with a Flirc and a large external HDD. Can I just install TVHeadend on top of that, or does it have to be with OSMC?

Thanks...

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