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Streambaby - new streaming application

Discussion in 'TiVo Home Media Features & TiVoToGo' started by kearygriffin, Jan 20, 2009.

  1. Jan 25, 2009 #201 of 3405
    kearygriffin

    kearygriffin New Member

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    Ah, thank you. I had been playing around earlier today with streaming back .tivo files, and noticed that streaming couldn't keep up. After I saw the other post about HD streams, I was just looking in my code to see if maybe I was creating a bottle neck somewhere.
     
  2. Jan 26, 2009 #202 of 3405
    atomicteevee

    atomicteevee New Member

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    Same problem here, standalone was playing avi's fine, latest version running in tandem w/ Galleon I can only stream mp4's. Avi's I get this message in red: "Incompatible video stream"
     
  3. Jan 26, 2009 #203 of 3405
    NA9D

    NA9D New Member

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    Thanks. That's rather annoying. Why put a 100 Mb/sec LAN connection on a device and not use it. Perhaps its to keep the device stable as too much LAN traffic could maybe cause the box to crash. Still, you'd think they could do better with that.

    So it looks like there's not a really good way to transfer HD Tivo files back to the box. I've got to wait either way. Bummer.

    Any way to set up streambaby to force a transcode from MPEG2 to H.264?

    It's interesting how H.264 will work. Yeah, it will stream fine as the codec is much more efficient at compressing the stream. But then it requires a lot more horsepower at the receiving end to decompress the stream. So if the Tivo can handle that fine, why don't they just let it stream at a faster bit rate to begin with.

    Who knows... :)
     
  4. Jan 26, 2009 #204 of 3405
    NA9D

    NA9D New Member

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    Algonquin, IL
    Hey one other comment on Streambaby. I've got a bunch of DVD rips that I'd like to play. Streambaby will see and play the .vob files fine, but it won't recognize the DVD folder as an entire DVD. And it also will not recognize .iso files.

    Any way to make this work?
     
  5. Jan 26, 2009 #205 of 3405
    wmcbrine

    wmcbrine Ziphead

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    There are two different systems at work here -- the remuxing or demuxing of MPEG-2, from program stream to transport stream or elementary streams, which is (apparently) done in software; and the decoding of the video, which is done in hardware. The TiVo doesn't have much horsepower for things it has to do in software.

    The faster streaming of h.264 is a fascinating result. I always thought those podcasts seemed to come in blazingly fast, but I didn't make the connection. It suggests that the h.264 streams are indeed being pumped to the decoder without having to be demuxed or remuxed, unlike the MPEG-2 streams.

    It makes me wonder all the more if there's really no way to get an MPEG-2 transport stream directly to the TiVo. There ought to be.

    It also suggests a reason why h.264 is not yet (as far as we can tell) allowed for TTCB transfers. :(
     
  6. Jan 26, 2009 #206 of 3405
    CuriousMark

    CuriousMark Forum Denizen

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    There should be a way, after all that is how MRV is said to work.

    I also think there is a legacy issue. TTG and TTCB were designed to apply and remove DRM, something that most streams don't have. The streams rely on the stream not being saved rather than having a DRM wrapper in many cases. (Netflix being the obvious DRM encased stream exception) TiVo would need to re-engineer the TTG and TTCB code to skip past the DRM steps for mp4 content and simply may not have gotten around to doing that yet.
     
  7. Jan 26, 2009 #207 of 3405
    moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Encoding to a decent quality H.264 on the fly in real time is not possible for most computers with non dedicated hardware for the task, so I don't think this is a viable option.
     
  8. Jan 26, 2009 #208 of 3405
    wmcbrine

    wmcbrine Ziphead

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    I meant for HME streaming. It's probably doable in pyTivo (just kind of a pain).

    Other way round -- they'd want to be able to apply it to TTG'd h.264. They can already accept unencrypted MPEG-2.
     
  9. Jan 26, 2009 #209 of 3405
    windracer

    windracer joined the 10k club

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    I think there may be a problem with my Galleon instructions that prevent the transcoding from working. I haven't had a chance to play around with it yet though.
     
  10. Jan 26, 2009 #210 of 3405
    kearygriffin

    kearygriffin New Member

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    Jan 31, 2008
    The other issue is that currently to stream MP4 to the tivo, the full index (moov atom) needs to be sent to the TiVo as part of the MP4 file, which is not available until the entire video has been transcoded.

    One thing I have been wanting to play with, but can't seem to find the correct tools to test it, is to see if the TiVo supports h264/ac3 inside of a MPEG-PS stream. If it did, then it would be at least possible to transcode to h264(mp4) and stream to the TiVo. (My guess is that this wouldnt help with the bandwidth issues, as it would probably make h264 slow down like the current mpeg streams, but since you can get better quality at lower bit rates with h264, it may help somewhat)

    Does anyone know of any tools to create a mpeg-ps with h264/ac3? (From what I've read I think it should be possible).
     
  11. Jan 26, 2009 #211 of 3405
    fyodor

    fyodor Member

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    Does anybody have trouble with mp4 videos not being upscaled or otherwise looking not as good as other content? I have some 480p mp4 videos and they seem to have more pixellation/blurriness than a lot of other SD content (SD channels, Amazon unbox downloads)?

    F
     
  12. Jan 26, 2009 #212 of 3405
    moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure if mpeg-ps with H264 is even possible or within specs. Certainly mpeg-ts container allows for that but so far we've been unable to get mpeg-ts to be accepted by Tivo. I can see the motivation for this from the moov atom perspective, but the issue would still be transcoding to H264 video in real time which I don't think is practical on a general purpose computer no matter what the container.
     
  13. Jan 26, 2009 #213 of 3405
    herbman

    herbman Member

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    Looks like VLC would do it, but who knows if it's going to work on the TiVo.
     
  14. Jan 26, 2009 #214 of 3405
    Yoav

    Yoav New Member

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    As coded right now, I don't think so. A DVD folder contains a bunch of files that define a bunch of streams (audio and video) which are expected to be parsed by a DVD playing tool.
    An .iso file is even further out (that's basically a description of a CD or DVD layout put in a file and usually compressed). an .iso file is not a movie, but may contain a movie (like a .zip file might, or a .tar file might).

    Both of these things 'could' be added and made to work, but it would be moving streambaby from a 'movie' streamer and into the realm of media viewers (like plex). -- I think it's best for now if that's not added.


    THAT SAID: It's not too difficult for you to turn both those things into actual media files that can be streamed. Handbrake is a very nice streaming app that can take a DVD layout in a directory, let you select which audio and video streams you want, and re-encodes them into h264 mp4 files (or mkv or whatever).
    If you instead prefer to not re-encoder (faster, no degradation of quality, but HUUUUGE files) you can use tools like mplayer or vlc to rip out the contents of the DVD and save them to an .mpg file. Keep in mind that this will generate a file without multiple streams, which may confuse some programs (I haven't tried it with streambaby). Here's how you would use mplayer if you have MPlayerOSX installed in /Applications (run this in Terminal.app):
    Code:
    /Applications/MPlayer\ OSX.app/Contents/Resources/External_Binaries/mplayer.app/Contents/MacOS/mplayer -dumpstream -dumpfile ~/Desktop/mymovie.mpg dvd://1 -dvd-device <FULL path to your movie>
    
    If you are more comfortable with using friendly programs, and have VLC installed, you can also do the following:
    • run VLC
    • Select File...Quick Open File, and browse to the main folder (containing VIDEO_TS and AUDIO_TS)
    • might as well hit 'stop' to stop playing the film
    • Select File...Streaming Exporting Wizard, Transcode Save to File..
    • Pick the Existing movie you loaded
    • Don't transcode
    • You probably want MPEG PS here
    • Pick an output file
    • Hit finish, and wait

    Anyways, as for your .iso file, double-clicking it will generally open the file as a 'mounted volume' and then you can read it like it was a folder to re-encode
     
  15. Jan 26, 2009 #215 of 3405
    moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Streambaby has option to play an entire folder (press "Play" on a folder) or if you press "FF" on a title in file browser mode it will setup a playlist of all files from the current cursor position down, so that works well for playing a group of .vob files.
     
  16. Jan 26, 2009 #216 of 3405
    kearygriffin

    kearygriffin New Member

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    Jan 31, 2008
    Not sure when I will get to it, but there was some discussion a while back on commercial skipping and supporting cut-lists. I tried to get comskip working but had a lot of difficulties. (Mainly because I run Linux, and I also couldn't get it run on my virtual-vista).

    Anyway, if someone could post the first few lines of a cut file that would be great. Again, not sure when I will get to it, but figured I might as well collection the information.

    I believe comskip supports multiple output formats, but I think I am going to interested in the videoredo format. I believe it uses timestamps as opposed to frames which is easier for me to deal with. (If I am wrong, and there is a better format that uses timestamps as opposed to frames, let me know)
     
  17. Jan 26, 2009 #217 of 3405
    moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    NOTE: I believe by default EDL file generation is enabled in comskip.ini. VideoRedo output you have to enable in comskip.ini.
    EDL file syntax:
    http://mediacoder.sourceforge.net/wiki/index.php/EDL
    edl cut file (time is in seconds)
    ------------
    Format is:
    [begin second] [end second] [action]
    action = 0 for skip, 1 for mute

    Example:
    201.40 510.64 0
    1451.12 1522.04 0
    3084.04 3240.80 0
    4368.44 4691.64 0
    5696.64 5696.68 0

    VRD cut file sample
    -------------------
    <Cut>2012800000:5105200000
    <Cut>14510000000:15219200000
    <Cut>30839200000:32406800000
    <Cut>43683200000:46915200000
    <Cut>56965200000:56965600000
     
  18. Jan 26, 2009 #218 of 3405
    Yoav

    Yoav New Member

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    vlc did let me use passthru to create an mpeg-ps with h264/ac3 from an mp4 that had those. However, the resulting file was broken (ffmpeg wouldn't see an audio stream). If I manually tried to re-encode to h264/ac3, it would not let me select mpeg-ps. I could select mpeg-ts though. Do you want me to make and upload an mpeg-ts with h.264/ac3 for testing?
     
  19. Jan 26, 2009 #219 of 3405
    kearygriffin

    kearygriffin New Member

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    Thanks Yoav, but so far no one has figured out how to stream a mpeg-ts (as opposed to ps) stream to the TiVo, so until/unless we pass that hurdle, it won't make sense to start playing with h264 in a TS stream.
     
  20. Jan 26, 2009 #220 of 3405
    moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Mission...
    So to sum things up, the biggest challenges remaining to make Tivo streaming option much more useful than it currently is:
    1. Good quality HD mpeg2 streaming is currently not really practical since it can't keep up with real time.
    WORKAROUND: Re-encode those videos to high quality mpeg4 container with H.264 video & AC3 audio. This cannot be done on the fly.

    2. 1.1 GB buffer limitation.
    WORKAROUND: Streambaby already works around this issue by starting a new stream at the buffer limit point, but it's not ideal to have to start a new stream for which a new buffer will have to build up. This sort of ties back to issue 1 where for high bit rate streams the buffer build up is not fast enough for real time playback.
    There must be a solution to this issue as Tivo/Netflix does not suffer from this problem.

    Anyone that can come up with good solutions to above major issues will take Tivo streaming to the next level.
     

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