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InfiniteLoop

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#119180 23-May-2013 15:49
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Hi all

A colleague and I have been discussing concepts for whole home HTPC setups, with analogue TV gone in the South Island the idea of extending an HTPC seems better than buying a freeview PVR for separate rooms and having fragmented content.

I thought I'd bounce my ideas around and see what experience you guys have in this area.

The concept:

- every room can access live tv with PVR functionality
- live TV channels can be changed in each room
- every room has access to server based media (Movies/TV)
- the system front end is wife/mum/dad/grandma friendly

Backend server:

- dedicated HTPC server with tuner cards to service all the rooms with Freeview/Sky
- Plex or similar media server
- NextPVR

Frontend (one per room):

- A streaming device capable of running XBMC (or alternative) probably R Pi
- XBMC probably with PleXBMC depending on media server


The media server part of the concept seems relatively straightforward, the part I foresee difficulty with is getting a TV stream to each room (can an individual tuner be assigned to each box), being able to change channels in the rooms, PVR functions in the rooms and all the complication seems to increase if its sky instead of freeview.

XBMC seems to offer a great interface where live and server based media can be accessed without needing separate software (wife factor).

Is this concept possible or is my head in the clouds, does anyone have experience with a similar setup, possibly with different software/hardware combinations. Interested in any feedback.

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ubergeeknz
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  #824185 23-May-2013 15:53
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It should work, yes.  XBMC is a great front end and should make your life pretty easy.  You don't need to assign tuners to each room, just have enough in the server that your needs are covered.  Check out this guide: The XBMC Live TV and PVR/DVR Setup Guide

trig42
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  #824197 23-May-2013 16:11
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The other way is Windows Media Centre with a truckload of tuners (or HD Homeruns) and Xboxes in each room as Media Centre Extenders.

 
 
 
 


InfiniteLoop

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  #824216 23-May-2013 16:57
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trig42: The other way is Windows Media Centre with a truckload of tuners (or HD Homeruns) and Xboxes in each room as Media Centre Extenders.


I thought about this however xbox doesn't have the best support from a file comparability perspective.

InfiniteLoop

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  #824217 23-May-2013 16:59
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ubergeeknz: It should work, yes.  XBMC is a great front end and should make your life pretty easy.  You don't need to assign tuners to each room, just have enough in the server that your needs are covered.  Check out this guide: The XBMC Live TV and PVR/DVR Setup Guide


So basically 5 tuners for 5 TVs and the server would work out which is using which?

surfisup1000
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  #824218 23-May-2013 17:04
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Backend server:

- dedicated HTPC server with tuner cards to service all the rooms with Freeview/Sky


So, you want a server with a sky tuner to distribute a digital sky feed to any client in the house? 

I believe, this is impossible as there is simply no hardware solution available and there are content protection issues that mean there will unlikely be one in the future. 

Freeview, should be possible although not if they use HDCP? Not sure. 

InfiniteLoop

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  #824236 23-May-2013 17:31
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So, you want a server with a sky tuner to distribute a digital sky feed to any client in the house? 

I believe, this is impossible as there is simply no hardware solution available and there are content protection issues that mean there will unlikely be one in the future. 

Freeview, should be possible although not if they use HDCP? Not sure. 


I have seen a three tuner HTPC serve sky to another HTPC, so I assume that it could be possible to serve to XBMC. I'm not sure if recordings are encrypted requiring a sky card.

ajobbins
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  #824237 23-May-2013 17:31
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I think Live TV support is coming to Plex, A Plex client/server model could be the answer.

HD Homerun could be a good tuner option.





Twitter: ajobbins


 
 
 
 


eXDee
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  #824330 23-May-2013 19:14
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InfiniteLoop:
So, you want a server with a sky tuner to distribute a digital sky feed to any client in the house? 

I believe, this is impossible as there is simply no hardware solution available and there are content protection issues that mean there will unlikely be one in the future. 

Freeview, should be possible although not if they use HDCP? Not sure. 


I have seen a three tuner HTPC serve sky to another HTPC, so I assume that it could be possible to serve to XBMC. I'm not sure if recordings are encrypted requiring a sky card.

Once a recording is decoded, the file on disk will be unencrypted.

This is definitely possible for a multi tuner setup, you could even combine DVB-S(2) for sky and DVB-T for Freeview HD services, if you want higher definition FTA channels.

davidcole
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  #824349 23-May-2013 19:38
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The xbmc/pvr model is generally ok...but be wary of what you use for an xbmc client. I have a raspberry PI that cannot natively play the 1080i dvb-t streams.

As Adam said i live tv may be coming to plex and/or rasplex - but it remains to be seen if the tv stream will be passed through the transcoder.

I've had pretty good success with a 3 tuner box that also housed a plex server, and with a couple of modifcations, recorded content is available in plex for IOS/Raspberry PI plex clients with transcoding.

I did start trying to look at a plex channel to read the nextpvr API so that I could pass the url to the plex transcoder for live tv - but my python wasn't that great.

I guess it depends how important live tv is over recorded. And how much you want to spend on the clients.

I belive the best option for a system like that that I'm contemplating is raspberry pi's running plex for recorded...and the likely locations where live tv will be required a pc that is capble of playing 1080i natively.






Previously known as psycik

OpenHAB: Gigabyte AMD A8 BrixOpenHAB with Aeotech ZWave Controller, Raspberry PI, Wemos D1 Mini, Zwave, Xiaomi Humidity and Temperature sensors and Bluetooth LE Sensors
Media:Chromecast v2, ATV4, Roku3, HDHomeRun Dual
Windows 10
Host (Plex Server/Crashplan): 2x2TB, 2x3TB, 1x4TB using DriveBender, Samsung 850 evo 512 GB SSD, Hyper-V Server with 1xW10, 1xW2k8, 2xUbuntu 16.04 LTS, Crashplan, NextPVR channel for Plex,NextPVR Metadata Agent and Scanner for Plex


JimmyH
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  #824362 23-May-2013 19:56
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I have been thinking along similar lines, and have been incrementally putting elements in place as time permits. I'm not so fussed, however, about it all having to be live. I already record virtually all TV before watching so I can (i) watch it at a convenient time; and (ii) zap through the ads.

What I have/will shortly have in place now is:

1. A twin tuner Panny DVD recorder. This is in the main room and can record 2xFV channels at once. Plus, it's connected to the Sky decoder and can record from this (in SD only). It can record material to its drive, burn to optical disks, and also stream recorded material via DLNA.

2. Two media players (WD Live Hub in main room, WD live in bedroom)

3. A small NAS (3TB Mybook Live) that sits on the network

4. A (somewhat elderly) desktop PC that does video editing/transcoding

5. Ethernet over powerline (2x Netgear XAVB5004, 2x Netgear XAVB5001) and a Belkin Playmax router tying it all together

It works well, after a fashion.

Planned upgrade over Christmas:

1. 4x2 Matrix Splitter, already purchased.

2. Some sort of HTPC, probably using my dust-gathering i3 Laptop. USB twin terrestrial tuner (for FV terrestrial). USB satellite tuner for FTA satellite and EPG. Hauppauge HD PVR and HD Fury 2 (already purchased) to enable Sky capture in SD from current decoder, and HD when I move to MySky. Can either record or stream live over network.

3. Better NAS - either a 4-bay or 7-bay NAS in RAID5 with a DLNA server to hold content and provide better drive redundancy.

Post-Christmas upgrade:

1. Better PC, to edit, transcode, and run Comskip for auto-magical commercial removal

2. MySky


InfiniteLoop

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  #824385 23-May-2013 20:22
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Sounds like a fairly hardcore setup Jimmy. Live TV is definitely required as this would be a family home setup, kids, guests etc.

Raspberry Pi may be out if HD live TV is a no go, my colleague has HD Sky as do I.

Question for those with tuner setups. If two devices are watching the same channel does that require two tuners (two tuned to that channel) or will both devices watch the same stream.

What are the better streaming boxes that support Plex or XBMC, preferably dedicated rather than an app on the device.

Benoire
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  #824396 23-May-2013 20:33
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InfiniteLoop: Hi all

A colleague and I have been discussing concepts for whole home HTPC setups, with analogue TV gone in the South Island the idea of extending an HTPC seems better than buying a freeview PVR for separate rooms and having fragmented content.

I thought I'd bounce my ideas around and see what experience you guys have in this area.

The concept:

- every room can access live tv with PVR functionality
- live TV channels can be changed in each room
- every room has access to server based media (Movies/TV)
- the system front end is wife/mum/dad/grandma friendly

Backend server:

- dedicated HTPC server with tuner cards to service all the rooms with Freeview/Sky
- Plex or similar media server
- NextPVR

Frontend (one per room):

- A streaming device capable of running XBMC (or alternative) probably R Pi
- XBMC probably with PleXBMC depending on media server


The media server part of the concept seems relatively straightforward, the part I foresee difficulty with is getting a TV stream to each room (can an individual tuner be assigned to each box), being able to change channels in the rooms, PVR functions in the rooms and all the complication seems to increase if its sky instead of freeview.

XBMC seems to offer a great interface where live and server based media can be accessed without needing separate software (wife factor).

Is this concept possible or is my head in the clouds, does anyone have experience with a similar setup, possibly with different software/hardware combinations. Interested in any feedback.

Yes indeed this works.  I currently have a four tuner server in a cupboard feeding an HTPC in the lounge and a PC in the office via MediaPortal (as XBMC isn't mature enough for TV yet IMHO).  My sky card is decrypted in a raspberry pi and passed to the tv server when it needs to decrypt anything.

My house now has two network ports per room fed in to the server area, and each PC is connected to that.  If I need more tuners, I simply add more. If I need more record space, I add another HDD... Mediaportal then acts as the client front end for my movies, tv and music.

kiwijunglist
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  #824438 23-May-2013 21:44
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uestion for those with tuner setups. If two devices are watching the same channel does that require two tuners (two tuned to that channel) or will both devices watch the same stream.


I use MP, and only 1 tuner is required in this situation.  You could record a channel + stream to two devices and you would still only require 1 tuner.




HTPC / Home automation (home assistant) enthusiast.


CYaBro
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  #824444 23-May-2013 21:59
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Benoire:
InfiniteLoop: Hi all

A colleague and I have been discussing concepts for whole home HTPC setups, with analogue TV gone in the South Island the idea of extending an HTPC seems better than buying a freeview PVR for separate rooms and having fragmented content.

I thought I'd bounce my ideas around and see what experience you guys have in this area.

The concept:

- every room can access live tv with PVR functionality
- live TV channels can be changed in each room
- every room has access to server based media (Movies/TV)
- the system front end is wife/mum/dad/grandma friendly

Backend server:

- dedicated HTPC server with tuner cards to service all the rooms with Freeview/Sky
- Plex or similar media server
- NextPVR

Frontend (one per room):

- A streaming device capable of running XBMC (or alternative) probably R Pi
- XBMC probably with PleXBMC depending on media server


The media server part of the concept seems relatively straightforward, the part I foresee difficulty with is getting a TV stream to each room (can an individual tuner be assigned to each box), being able to change channels in the rooms, PVR functions in the rooms and all the complication seems to increase if its sky instead of freeview.

XBMC seems to offer a great interface where live and server based media can be accessed without needing separate software (wife factor).

Is this concept possible or is my head in the clouds, does anyone have experience with a similar setup, possibly with different software/hardware combinations. Interested in any feedback.

Yes indeed this works.  I currently have a four tuner server in a cupboard feeding an HTPC in the lounge and a PC in the office via MediaPortal (as XBMC isn't mature enough for TV yet IMHO).  My sky card is decrypted in a raspberry pi and passed to the tv server when it needs to decrypt anything.

My house now has two network ports per room fed in to the server area, and each PC is connected to that.  If I need more tuners, I simply add more. If I need more record space, I add another HDD... Mediaportal then acts as the client front end for my movies, tv and music.


More info on your pi sky card reader / decoder would be great.
Why are you using that rather than just a card reader directly on the server?
Pm me if you prefer. :)

Thanks!

InfiniteLoop

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  #824450 23-May-2013 22:16
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Benoire your setup sounds awesome and a lot like what I'm looking for. HTPC is out of the question as a front end because 5 would get expensive. Is media portal available on streaming devices? I too am curious about the R Pi card reader.

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