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Old 11-04-2007, 01:43 AM   #121
bkdtv
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laserfan
I wonder why you wrote "currently" in the above--has their been discussion that this is in the works?

I would not be surprised if it was NOT forthcoming--I think/expect Tivo does not have the horses to decode/display an HD Xvid file?
The Tivo Series3 is based around the Broadcom BCM7038 CPU and MPEG-2 decoder, but it also has a BCM7411 that is not yet used. The BCM7411 is the same MPEG-2/MPEG-4/VC-1 decoder used by the Samsung BD-P1000 and BD-P1200 Blu-ray players. It is also the same chip in the DirecTV HR20 DVR.

The TivoHD has the newer BCM7401 DVR CPU which integrates the BCM7038 and BCM7411 into a single chip. The BCM7401 is the same chip found in the new DirecTV HR21 DVR.

The DirecTV HR20 and HR21 DVRs both load a driver with MPEG-4 support, but Tivo only loads a MPEG-2 driver. I suspect Tivo will add MPEG-4 decoding capability to the next major release (maybe 10.x ?) so they can support high-definition downloads from Amazon Unbox (and elsewhere) in MPEG-4 AVC and VC-1 format. Unfortunately for Tivo, the hardware in the Series2 is not -- and never will be -- MPEG-4 capable.

Last edited by bkdtv : 11-04-2007 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 11-04-2007, 07:23 AM   #122
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amukhael
I am not using Desktop Plus and I was able to watch (download/stream) an .mpeg movie just by throwing the shortcut to the video into the My Tivo Recordings folder. However, I decided to convert my 20+gig HD movie (Hot Fuzz) by converting from .ts to .mpeg. The resulting file showed up in my Tivo and looks gorgeous, but alas, it's sans sound! I am re-converting using another app I found (DVBPortal's TSConverter) hoping that the AC3 will work and I will let you know if that helps.
Did anyone on this forum successfully download/stream an HD-DVD or Blu-Ray rip onto the Series 3? Will Desktop Plus convert any video file into H.264 format?
I had the same experience (Transfers OK but no sound) using HDTVtoMPEG2 converter. I had tried VideoReDo and saved as TiVo format but the TiVo would not recognize the file on NPL.
I have not gotten NonTiVo HD content back to the THD. SD MPEGS are transfering fine with the Basic TTG.
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Old 11-04-2007, 09:15 AM   #123
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkdtv
The Tivo Series3 ... has a BCM7411 that is not yet used... I suspect Tivo will add MPEG-4 decoding capability to the next major release...
Thanks for that; I didn't know it had any hardware-decoding for MPEG-4.

I couldn't find anything that explicitly stated the BCM7411 would decode Xvid/Dvix files...if you or anyone here knows, by all means share.
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Old 11-04-2007, 10:22 AM   #124
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holligl
I had the same experience (Transfers OK but no sound) using HDTVtoMPEG2 converter. I had tried VideoReDo and saved as TiVo format but the TiVo would not recognize the file on NPL.
I have not gotten NonTiVo HD content back to the THD. SD MPEGS are transfering fine with the Basic TTG.
holligl, let's hope wgw is onto something in regards to his very plausible solution that would require a downsampling of the AC3 audio-feed (it's currently at 1500kbps).

What say you wgw, or any others that have gotten non-TiVo recorded HD content to play on the Series3?
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Old 11-04-2007, 11:02 AM   #125
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amukhael
holligl, let's hope wgw is onto something in regards to his very plausible solution that would require a downsampling of the AC3 audio-feed (it's currently at 1500kbps).

What say you wgw, or any others that have gotten non-TiVo recorded HD content to play on the Series3?
I have several HD mpeg2 transport stream recordings from my Fusion HDTV USB tuner that I converted to mpeg2 program stream using HDTV2MPEG2 that play back fine on my S3s. However, some of them exhibit the following problems when played on the Tivos (OK for PC playback):
- Trick functions won't work
- Displayed total time not correct
- Audio/video sync problems
There are at least 2 recordings that play back perfectly - these are all recordings of ABCs "Lost".
Also of note that for all of the above I also have downconverted DVD compatible mpeg2 versions (created from the sources above) and all of those play back without issue on my S3s.

I have used TTG on several HD recordings from my S3s and stripped them of commercials (using Womble Mpeg Video Wizard) and fed them back to my S3s. In every case those recordings play back perfectly. So this seems to confirm that the most reliable HD sources for the Tivos are ones originating from the Tivos themselves which is probably why TivoPony mentioned that's officially all that Tivo supports for now.
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Old 11-04-2007, 11:15 AM   #126
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laserfan
Thanks for that; I didn't know it had any hardware-decoding for MPEG-4.

I couldn't find anything that explicitly stated the BCM7411 would decode Xvid/Dvix files...if you or anyone here knows, by all means share.
The big question in my mind is what formats the hi def TiVoes are capable of supporting on the box - can they be made to play protected WMVs, etc.? Then after that comes what will TiVo actually implement with software updates?
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Old 11-04-2007, 11:15 AM   #127
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moyekj
I have several HD mpeg2 transport stream recordings from my Fusion HDTV USB tuner that I converted to mpeg2 program stream using HDTV2MPEG2 that play back fine on my S3s. However, some of them exhibit the following problems when played on the Tivos (OK for PC playback):
- Trick functions won't work
- Displayed total time not correct
- Audio/video sync problems
There are at least 2 recordings that play back perfectly - these are all recordings of ABCs "Lost".
Also of note that for all of the above I also have downconverted DVD compatible mpeg2 versions (created from the sources above) and all of those play back without issue on my S3s.

I have used TTG on several HD recordings from my S3s and stripped them of commercials (using Womble Mpeg Video Wizard) and fed them back to my S3s. In every case those recordings play back perfectly. So this seems to confirm that the most reliable HD sources for the Tivos are ones originating from the Tivos themselves which is probably why TivoPony mentioned that's officially all that Tivo supports for now.
Likewise, I am able to stream any DVD-quality MPEG-2 file over to the S3. I am now scouring Doom9 for solutions to maybe demux the original .ts source file so that I can downsample the AC-3 audio stream and then re-mux it back to make a playable .mpg for the S3. Looking for any recommendations from the forum
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Old 11-04-2007, 11:29 AM   #128
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Using the web interface on my TiVo HD through a NetGear 11g router and the TiVo USB adapter, I am only getting 545 KB/sec transfer. This is better than the 350+KB/sec I used to get with my Series 2, but nowhere near the MB/sec you guys are speaking of.

Is the TiVo-branded USB wireless adapter limiting here? I suppose I could hook up ethernet to my laptop and see...
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Old 11-04-2007, 12:16 PM   #129
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moyekj
So if anything I would categorize the S3 mpeg2 decoder as "flaky".
Don't get me wrong - I'm not saying that TTCB capability is critically flawed. I'm just trying to explore exactly what works and what doesn't work. I'm very happy that at least mpeg2 files originating from S3s (SD & HD) can be edited of commercials and then thrown back at the S3s and play back perfectly. Also very happy that commercial DVD originating mpegs seem to play back fine as well. Note that these notes are based on a relatively small sample of files I have tried so far, so may not representative of a much larger sample size...
I've spent way, way too many hours with FFMPEG in the last week or so, trying to figure out exactly how to get my S3 to playback converted-to MPEG2 videos and it is really hard to keep quality and yet not have the S3 freak out (skip bits and/or FFW past parts) when presumably there are spikes in bitrate. Also, VideoRedo didn't do anything at all to let me watch a converted HD capture from my PC to my S3, the same thing, it just seems the S3 can't handle spikes in bitrate at all.

I've found that all I can do is to really lower the entire quality of the video, so that the S3 can handle playing back the entire video, because nothing I do with the -b -maxrate and -bt settings has been able to work on my entire test suite of videos.

I think the key is if the video was originally encoded in MPEG2 with a modest bitrate (like a DVD), then it is fine, but HD MPEG-2 videos from capture cards and also transcoding from MPEG-4 to MPEG-2 has really been "flaky" in my experiments. The bottom line is, I can get it to work, if I really butcher the quality, but that defeats the purpose of having a sort of universal media player (like say the TViX 5110 PVR?)

Oh well, I really don't *need* to have the TTCB feature, it was just something I wanted to see what it was capable of in case I did want to rely on it, but I now see it can't be relied upon, but is more of a "bonus feature" perhaps.
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Old 11-04-2007, 12:39 PM   #130
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moyekj
I have used TTG on several HD recordings from my S3s and stripped them of commercials (using Womble Mpeg Video Wizard) and fed them back to my S3s. In every case those recordings play back perfectly.
Ouch; as cogx just said VideoReDo must mangle the mpg somehow that Womble does not--I have yet to get an edited HD show back onto my S3 w/o problems.
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Old 11-04-2007, 01:03 PM   #131
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laserfan
Ouch; as cogx just said VideoReDo must mangle the mpg somehow that Womble does not--I have yet to get an edited HD show back onto my S3 w/o problems.
I think cogx was referring to HD captures on his PC edited with VideoRedo. I thought others posted success with VideoRedo for editing HD recordings originating from Tivos? The flow I use that has worked perfectly:
- TTG to PC (Windows XP SP2, Tivo Desktop 2.50)
- Direct Show Dump Utility to convert .TiVo to .mpg
- Edit with Womble to cut out commercials
- Save to .mpg (which only transcodes at the cut points)

Are you editing .TiVo files directly with VideoRedo? If so, perhaps try converting to .mpg first using Direct Show Dump Utility and then run them through VideoRedo to see if it's any better.
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Old 11-04-2007, 01:46 PM   #132
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Originally Posted by johnnylundy
Using the web interface on my TiVo HD through a NetGear 11g router and the TiVo USB adapter, I am only getting 545 KB/sec transfer. This is better than the 350+KB/sec I used to get with my Series 2, but nowhere near the MB/sec you guys are speaking of.
Wireless throughput is limited by the quality of your signal. Wireless conditions in every home are different, but some wireless routers do better with weaker signals than others.

That said, remember that throughput differs significantly depending on what you are doing on the Tivo. If both of your tuners are set to high-bitrate HD channels like CBS-HD and Hdnet, throughput will be significantly less than if those tuners are set to SD channels like SciFi and CNN.
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Old 11-04-2007, 08:55 PM   #133
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moyekj
...perhaps try converting to .mpg first using Direct Show Dump Utility and then run them through VideoRedo
Excellent idea, I will try it, thanks!
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Old 11-04-2007, 09:11 PM   #134
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moyekj
I thought others posted success with VideoRedo for editing HD recordings originating from Tivos?
I have had success doing doing that. No need for DirectShow Dump (or TivoDecode) here.
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Old 11-04-2007, 10:36 PM   #135
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PC HD Capture transfered to THD

Quote:
Originally Posted by moyekj
I think cogx was referring to HD captures on his PC edited with VideoRedo. I thought others posted success with VideoRedo for editing HD recordings originating from Tivos? The flow I use that has worked perfectly:
- TTG to PC (Windows XP SP2, Tivo Desktop 2.50)
- Direct Show Dump Utility to convert .TiVo to .mpg
- Edit with Womble to cut out commercials
- Save to .mpg (which only transcodes at the cut points)

Are you editing .TiVo files directly with VideoRedo? If so, perhaps try converting to .mpg first using Direct Show Dump Utility and then run them through VideoRedo to see if it's any better.
I have A Fusion RT5 Gold and have now transfered a Transport Stream file back to the THD using VideoReDo and TCCB.

1) open the .TP file in VideoReDo, Run Commercial Scan if desired.
2) Save as Mpeg file in the TiVo Recordings folder, but under options change the Audio format to mpeg (I used a 192KBit rate).

I did this with a fairly short file, to prove it out, the transfer was a little slow, but seemed to hold the quality and no synch problems. It seems the MPEG Spec on the audio is the key. My previous attempts lost the audio.
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Old 11-05-2007, 08:41 AM   #136
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holligl
...under options change the Audio format to mpeg (I used a 192KBit rate).
Don't want to do that holligl--I wouldn't want to lose the wonderful opening (all surround channels) drums from Santana's "Evil Ways" in the outstanding episode "Brotherhood" of Cane!!!! Wow!
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Old 11-05-2007, 10:43 AM   #137
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moyekj
I think cogx was referring to HD captures on his PC edited with VideoRedo. I thought others posted success with VideoRedo for editing HD recordings originating from Tivos? The flow I use that has worked perfectly:
- TTG to PC (Windows XP SP2, Tivo Desktop 2.50)
- Direct Show Dump Utility to convert .TiVo to .mpg
- Edit with Womble to cut out commercials
- Save to .mpg (which only transcodes at the cut points)

Are you editing .TiVo files directly with VideoRedo? If so, perhaps try converting to .mpg first using Direct Show Dump Utility and then run them through VideoRedo to see if it's any better.
I'm not even worrying about cutting out commercials, I don't even care about doing that. My issue is that although I can already get my HDTV captures into the S3 just fine, and it will play them, it won't play them all the way through without skipping every so often; usually it will skip within the first 30 seconds, so I know soon enough that yet another transfer isn't going to be really be watchable. I find it odd that the S3 can record HDTV perfectly itself, but is unable to perfectly play back the recordings from the same exact channels I record with my Fusion5Gold PCI card. There is a maximum bitrate for HDTV recordings, so I don't understand why it can't handle those video files without skipping.
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Old 11-05-2007, 11:11 AM   #138
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I've successfully moved MP4 home movies to my Series 3. When I go to play them, I have the audio drop issue. If I move the input on my tuner to another input and then back to the correct input, the sound comes on. Is this a known bug?
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Old 11-05-2007, 07:01 PM   #139
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Tried TTCB with a recorded file from my Nexus-S card. The format of 1280x720 59.94 fps 16/9 aspect 13.480 Mbps. The audio was AC3 but I tried to save as 192 mpg in Videoredo and I had no success. Does anyone have any suggestions?
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Old 11-05-2007, 08:43 PM   #140
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Originally Posted by flyerman
Tried TTCB with a recorded file from my Nexus-S card. The format of 1280x720 59.94 fps 16/9 aspect 13.480 Mbps. The audio was AC3 but I tried to save as 192 mpg in Videoredo and I had no success. Does anyone have any suggestions?
Did you use 48KHz?
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Old 11-05-2007, 10:53 PM   #141
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Yes 48000 Hz used.
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Old 11-06-2007, 11:22 AM   #142
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Hi everyone, just wanted to mention that i spoke to TiVo customer service about my transfer issues and they confirmed that it was not an issue with either the files, the network or the TiVo so that narrowed it down to my PC and/or the copy of TDP I was running. so i re-downloaded/installed TDP and then made sure my PC was set to never automatically shut down or sleep and i've had no problem transferring avi files since.
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Old 11-06-2007, 01:05 PM   #143
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If you haven't checked the first post recently, I added several new FAQs to the TivoToGo section.
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Old 11-06-2007, 10:20 PM   #144
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I just wanted to express my thanks for posting this FAQ. I have just started with TTG since it just became available for the Series 3. I never had a Series 2 to play with. I skipped from the O.G. Series 1 to the S3. This is a great collection of information and the information on TTCB is invaluable to me.

I just started looking at ways that I could take video I transfered from the TiVo, edit it, and then view it again in my home theater in HD and surround. I was looking at the AppleTV and scrapped that idea because of the AppleTV limitations. I was also looking at the PS3 and I may still get a PS3 for the Blu-Ray player (and the games). Then I found this.

I already found TiVo Decode Manager and transfered some content to my Mac. I have also been fooling around with MPEG Streamclip off and on for some time. So tonight, I trimmed a small piece of an old SNL episode (one Digital Short skit) with MPEG Streamclip, saved it as an MPEG file, and was able to transfer it back to my TiVo. In High Def, in Surround Sound, nice. I also found that TiVo Desktop created a .properties file with the same name as my MPEG file in my TiVoShows folder. I took a look at that file with TextEdit and decided to see what would happen if I edited that file. At first nothing seemed to change (I was expecting the Title and Description to change. After I stopped and restarted TiVo Desktop though. The title and description I typed into the .properties file showed up on my TiVo and I transfered the file to my S3. Sweet!

It seems to work fine. I thought the lipsync was off at first and that the video frame rate was a tiny bit lower than it should be but it seems to be okay. I'll keep testing.

Now I'm going to have to add that external SATA drive so I can keep a collection of my favorite SNL skits, music videos, and whatever else I want on my TiVo for instant access.
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Old 11-06-2007, 10:32 PM   #145
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keysman
I also found that TiVo Desktop created a .properties file with the same name as my MPEG file in my TiVoShows folder. I took a look at that file with TextEdit and decided to see what would happen if I edited that file. At first nothing seemed to change (I was expecting the Title and Description to change. After I stopped and restarted TiVo Desktop though. The title and description I typed into the .properties file showed up on my TiVo and I transfered the file to my S3. Sweet!
That sounds very interesting. Can you post here the contents of a .properties file? Would be great to control how the file looks on the Tivo - maybe even getting folders would be possible!?
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Old 11-06-2007, 11:30 PM   #146
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Sure here you go. This is what the blank file looks like.

Code:
#Tue Nov 06 18:41:21 PST 2007
description=
title=filename.mpeg
I assume you could also change the date but I left that alone. I added my own description after description= and I changed "filename.mpeg" (by the way filename.mpeg is just a placeholder I typed. It actually said the name of the file I placed in the TiVoShows folder) to the title I wanted.
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Old 11-07-2007, 01:18 AM   #147
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keysman
Sure here you go. This is what the blank file looks like.

Code:
#Tue Nov 06 18:41:21 PST 2007
description=
title=filename.mpeg
I assume you could also change the date but I left that alone. I added my own description after description= and I changed "filename.mpeg" (by the way filename.mpeg is just a placeholder I typed. It actually said the name of the file I placed in the TiVoShows folder) to the title I wanted.
Didn't work for me so I did some Googling and found this will only work for Macs, not Windows. Thanks anyway!
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Old 11-07-2007, 01:19 AM   #148
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Okay I want to post some screen shots but I have to bump my post count. Sorry.
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Old 11-07-2007, 01:19 AM   #149
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Now that I have more than 5 posts...

Here are a couple of "Screen Shots" (pun intended).

All the info on this screen is the way I entered it into the .properties file created by TiVo Desktop on my Mac.



One thing I don't understand is why the time is in Seconds instead of minutes. Both files I have transfered back have been in this way. Oh well, I'm not too worried about that.



P.S. How sad is that, I have been a member since 2002 and only have 6 posts.
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Old 11-07-2007, 01:50 AM   #150
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cogx
I've spent way, way too many hours with FFMPEG in the last week or so, trying to figure out exactly how to get my S3 to playback converted-to MPEG2 videos and it is really hard to keep quality and yet not have the S3 freak out (skip bits and/or FFW past parts) when presumably there are spikes in bitrate. Also, VideoRedo didn't do anything at all to let me watch a converted HD capture from my PC to my S3, the same thing, it just seems the S3 can't handle spikes in bitrate at all.

I've found that all I can do is to really lower the entire quality of the video, so that the S3 can handle playing back the entire video, because nothing I do with the -b -maxrate and -bt settings has been able to work on my entire test suite of videos.

I think the key is if the video was originally encoded in MPEG2 with a modest bitrate (like a DVD), then it is fine, but HD MPEG-2 videos from capture cards and also transcoding from MPEG-4 to MPEG-2 has really been "flaky" in my experiments. The bottom line is, I can get it to work, if I really butcher the quality, but that defeats the purpose of having a sort of universal media player (like say the TViX 5110 PVR?)

Oh well, I really don't *need* to have the TTCB feature, it was just something I wanted to see what it was capable of in case I did want to rely on it, but I now see it can't be relied upon, but is more of a "bonus feature" perhaps.
When I first started using ffmpeg as part of the pyTivo software for transfering video to the Tivo (see TiVo Home Media Features & TiVoToGo forum on this site ) I also thought there had to be a way to use it to downsample HD video just to the exact bitrate required by the Tivo (ie 17M max bitrate) while maintaining maximum file size etc., but alas, ffmpeg is apparently just a transcoder that tries to recode or stream av as best it can at the smallest size while trying to maintain quality. I've obviously made my fair share of mistaken assumptions and blunders in the last few weeks while trying to learn about converting av. But ffmpeg does however seem to produce excellent output and I can't really tell the difference between the original 30mbps HD ts steam and the output from ffmpeg. But I don't have a huge 60 inch HDTV either. I have not yet found a tool that will convert high bitrate transport stream down to the 16mbps that the Tivo seems to require while capping the peaks at 17mbps. If an affordable solution exists, I'll buy it today. VideoReDo will reduce the bitrate to 15mbps or whatever you select, but apparently it will not yet cap the peaks like ffmpeg will do when using the -maxrate option. (Edit: read on VideoReDo forum today that it does not really change bitrate, just the header. That's +1 for my mistaken assumptions) Hopefully a future version of VideoReDo or some other software will quickly and easily downsample HD video as well as the ac3 audio. Until the ideal tool presents itself, I guess I'll be using ffmpeg for now.

That said, I can only suggest with my limited experience with ffmpeg, that you might as well ignore the bitrate settings and concentrate on quality settings. Specifying bitrate does not really seem to matter. ffmpeg will still try to compress the video as best it can no matter what you specify. The -qscale option seems to be the easiest way to tell ffmpeg you want high quality output. Yet it will still attempt maximum compression. Right or wrong, the only reason I specify bitrate 14Mi in my ffmpeg string is so that it does not assume I want the default 200kbps bitrate. Not that it really matters when using qscale as my only quality setting. qscale seems to ignore the bitrate setting.

So, unless you want to attempt to scour the web for the meaning of all the ffmpeg options and best settings to use, I would suggest the following ffmpeg string for an easy conversion to a Tivo compatible mpg. Try a qscale setting somewhere between 0.5 and 1.5 depending on the speed of your processor and the resulting picture quality you are happy with on your particular HDTV. Personally, I'm very happy with the results and cannot tell the difference between ffmpeg and the high bitrate source.

ffmpeg_mp2.exe -i file.ts -vcodec mpeg2video -r 29.97 -b 14Mi -maxrate 17Mi -bufsize 1024k -aspect 16:9 -s hd720 -qscale 1.2 -acodec ac3 -ab 384k -ar 48000 -f vob out.mpg

Last edited by wgw : 11-09-2007 at 12:40 AM.
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