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Does Mini stream directly or through the OTA?

Discussion in 'TiVo Mini' started by dfreybur, Dec 31, 2016.

  1. dfreybur

    dfreybur Member

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    Our house is wireless except the office. Our Roamio OTA is in the living room connected over the wireless.

    For us any Mini can do management traffic to our Roamio but connecting to it for any type of stream other than playing an OTA show or recorded show is a deal breaker.

    Connecting through the Roamio for Netflix, Amazon Prime and such would send the data over the air twice and our wireless can't handle that. We've tried one person in each room trying to watch streamed shows in parallel, fails every time.
     
  2. krkaufman

    krkaufman TiVo shepherd

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    Streaming apps on Minis (other than cable provider on-demand apps, such as Xfinity On Demand for TiVo) pull their content directly from the Internet streaming service. Viewing content recorded on the host DVR or live TV is streamed over the home network from the host DVR.
     
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  3. fcfc2

    fcfc2 Well-Known Member

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    The folks here who are successful using wireless to serve their Tivos all have "robust" modern(dual band AC) wireless equipment and then use what I call "wireless to Ethernet adapters" at the mini locations. To go wireless to the host Tivo and then on to minis is going to be challenging even if you know what you are doing, which is why Tivo doesn't support wireless even though their newer DVR's have it.
    The pro's recommend networking in this order, Ethernet, MoCA, wireless, and finally powerline. Tivo supports MoCA and for good reason, although few homes have been wired for Ethernet, a majority do have coax runs which normally can be adapted to use the recommended MoCA networking. If you have a common coax system with outlets nearby your Tivos, most of which have MoCA builtin, there is an excellent chance you can get your Tivos working fine, without the wireless hurdles.
     
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  4. krkaufman

    krkaufman TiVo shepherd

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    So no possibility of a wired connection for any of the TiVo equipment, then, either Ethernet or MoCA (coax)?
     
  5. Feb 3, 2017 #5 of 14
    dfreybur

    dfreybur Member

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    Wiring buildings for Cat-6 is something I do at the office on request. As such it would be straight forward for me to wire the house for Cat-6 Ethernet cables. I have no intention to do that but if there is an overwhelming reason I can. Tivo generally does not count as overwhelming on my priority lists.

    Wiring over coax is an interesting question. My house is wired for cable. My OTA antenna on the roof is mounted straight up from the cable patch panel. Thing is my Roamio uses the coax connection closest to it for antenna. I have not read up on MoCA - Can it merge OTA and Ethernet? I am open to using the cable jack on the far side of the living room for antenna.

    Thanks for the discussion!
     
  6. Feb 3, 2017 #6 of 14
    krkaufman

    krkaufman TiVo shepherd

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    Re-reading the OP I'm confused by this paragraph as streaming content tuned by the TiVo (OTA TV) to the Mini would typically require much more bandwidth than what is needed for streaming content from the Internet streaming services. I would expect you to have issues streaming your OTA content from the Roamio before any issues are exhibited for streaming services.

    Meanwhile...

    Yes, that's its purpose. MoCA is designed to coexist with the various TV signals, OTA, cable & satellite, with specific compatible, named MoCA frequency bands reserved for each -- and between which the hardware is NOT compatible. (e.g. You can't use DirecTV MoCA hardware to network with TiVo's built-in MoCA chips.) TiVo's MoCA hardware is MoCA "Band D," spec'd for OTA antenna or cable TV/Internet installations.

    You seem a DIYer, so I'll provide you with some MoCA background links, below. If you have specific questions or just want to fast-forward to a plan, post back. That your antenna routes to/through your wiring panel is most beneficial.

    The main thing to look out for is "crossing the streams," as it were... allowing both OTA antenna and cable TV/Internet signals to hit the same coax lines. See the following posts/threads for some scenarios that may relate to your environment...

    Lastly, I'd suggest attempting to diagram what you're planning, even roughly, as visualizing the setup can help in identifying and communicating issues. (see attached for some sample diagrams, for inspiration)

    MoCA_diagram_eg1.jpg Antenna attic MoCA.png OTA-MoCA-CATV-multi.png
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2017
  7. Feb 3, 2017 #7 of 14
    pfiagra

    pfiagra Member

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    FWIW - My Mini is connected to my internet router (and thus, Roamio) using powerline adapters. I can watch Roamio content (recorded shows and live TV) perfectly fine, along with Hulu, YouTube, and Amazon content. However, Netflix will not work on it for some reason. So, beyond just bandwidth, I would guess that the robustness of the connection plays some role.
     
  8. Feb 4, 2017 #8 of 14
    dbpaddler

    dbpaddler Member

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    Philly
    Funny enough, along those lines. I was using a wireless adapter with my premier and then the wireless now on the ota. I could wirelessly stream Netflix, Hulu and such no problem, but I couldn't watch a movie from my roamio without it cutting out. Makes zero sense to me how it can stream over the Internet better than it can stream from within my own wireless network.
     
  9. Feb 4, 2017 #9 of 14
    krkaufman

    krkaufman TiVo shepherd

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    It's all about the encoding of the content.

    TiVos don't have control over the format in which content is broadcast. A modern TiVo "records" content by simply writing the received digital bitstream to the hard drive, with whatever digital codec/compression was employed by the broadcaster, usually the semi-ancient MPEG2 format. What this means is that a TiVo HD recording may have a bitrate as high as 20+Mbps -- while most Internet streaming services, concerned with the efficiency of their streams, are using much more advanced codecs and can push HD quality at 6 Mbps or less.

    See this older post for a summary/comparison of streaming bandwidth requirements (at the time of the posting)...

     
  10. dbpaddler

    dbpaddler Member

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    Philly
    I ditched the belkin and set up a 2nd Asus Tmo router as a media bridge. Works like a charm now. Just annoying that regardless of encoding differences, local network streaming from a tivo box is more inefficient than streaming from Netflix, Hulu and such. That just says the tivo encoding is that much more inefficient.
     
  11. krkaufman

    krkaufman TiVo shepherd

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    That is the point. As far as TiVo-to-TiVo streaming goes, there is no such thing as a "TiVo encoding." TiVo DVRs just write to the HDD whatever comes in on the coax. There would NEED to be a "TiVo (re)encoding" for inter-TiVo streaming to be as efficient as the named Internet services.

    TiVo mobile streaming and the yet-to-be-released Mavrik are a different matter, with both solutions re-encoding the received/recorded content to a more mobile- (and wireless-)friendly encoding format. That said, TiVo certainly could be more aggressive in developing a re-encoding solution that could fully supplant the wired requirement (e.g. Fire TV beta app and Stream-on-steroids), but I doubt that they see a sufficient market meriting the effort/expense.
     
  12. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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    To punctuate that, I finally did my TiVo to TiVo wireless benchmark. Between two basic Roamio boxes my speed was 45.6Mbps, just under 1/2 what I get using wireless bridges. I tried several combinations, but nothing changed. That's 5GHz/2.4GHz and single band/dual band. Only strange discovery was that SM was not stripped.
     
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  13. alexb

    alexb Active Member TCF Club

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    Kirkland, WA
    To the OP
    1) anything recorded on the TiVo is streamed over the network from the TiVo DVR to the TiVo Mini
    2) any live TV uses the tuner on the TiVo and is streamed over the network from the TiVo DVR to the TiVo Mini
    3) the TiVo Mini has its own set of IP based apps like netflix / amazon, as such these connect directly to the service (netlfix say) and do not go back to the TiVo DVR - you can see this as you have to put username and password in on all the boxes. Hope that helps.

    And yes many get wireless networking to work, especially AC - but it isn't bandwidth per se that's the issue - also jitter/loss is key and in an area where you have many people sharing spectrum, bad microwave ovens and phones you can see sporadic issues. I gave up on AC and powerline because of experiencing these issues (i am a network engineer) over multiple tries over last 10 5 to 10 years of trying to get media center extenders to work reliably. So yes wifi may work, give it a try, but be prepared to drop back to wired if needed.
     
  14. krkaufman

    krkaufman TiVo shepherd

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    Thanks for that info. Also, Skip Mode began propagating for transferred content a few months back.
     

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