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Old 26-Jan-2012, 1:10 AM   #21
elmo
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Is it bad to light up an old thread?! Hope not, as I think this one that GUM has started is pretty darn good. I thought that maybe I could add a little to it, sharing my experiences in getting my OTA setup tweaked, as I've done similar, going in a slightly different direction.

Those HDHR's are sweet and really made my setup fly. I got a refurb direct from SD for half price and scored another deal on a new one some time soon after. Both are dual tuners, so I have 4 signals coming in, one HDHR connected to a single antenna. They are in my office closet, jacked into my 8-port router. Wife and I both have laptops, so now we can have TV anywhere we take the laptops, thanks to wi-fi. We get all the big networks; ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX & PBS. Mix in all the subchannels and a couple of other networks and it's a pretty decent selection.

Ok, so the next best thing to the microwave is the DVR, right? I think so! That was the next step. Being that I already had a Home Theater PC previously....or at least a sad attempt at one, it was time to revisit. This time I build a shoebox version; it's dead quiet and can playback 1080p BluRay. Scoring deals, I had about $300 in it. It's running Windows 7. Windows Media Center is included and that's what handles the the DVR management duties. Once I loaded the HDHR drivers, WMC found the tuners and scanned for the stations. Then it downloaded the necessary TV guide. WMC records locally and has a function to archive to a server. (Yes, I have a Windows Home Server in a closet with plenty of disk space.) There, the recorded content can be shared with other WMC PC's, if you want to watch elsewhere. The DVR functionality is the best I've seen compared to the dish companies.

Outside of that, I have an app called Media Browser that is customized to present our movie collection. I've diced that up into kids movies and uhm, PG+ for the adults...not to be confused with adult movies! For a year or so, we also used the Netflix app for some streaming movies, but have since unsubscribed from that. But my point is that everything runs under a seamless interface that is pretty wife and kid friendly. My 6 yr old can take our Harmony One remote and dial up about anything, from PBS to a Disney flick.

Yes, I spent a little money on some hardware, but I haven't spent any for a while now. Not paying $75/mth for sat service makes that pretty easy though. I did build my own PC's, but for not much more, a person could buy comparable plug-n-play devices to do the same. If you're reading GUM's post and considering cutting the cable for OTA, you're probably a little smarter than the rest anyway!

Last edited by elmo; 26-Jan-2012 at 2:22 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 28-Apr-2012, 10:58 PM   #22
SVTarHeel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GroundUrMast View Post
As of December 2011 I own an HDHR3-US... Again, I wish SiliconDust had retained separate RF inputs to the individual tuners.
I'm thinking through the cable cutting process. At this point the leading contenders are a Myth HTPC and HDHomeRun. I ran across a new-in-the-box HDHR - it's white and has 2 plugs in the back. Is this like the 1st one(s) you have? Any reason to go for new new? Or is the dual input preferable in your mind?

Do you have your Myth box up and running? My Linux experience is limited although I have poked around the Mythbuntu site a bit.

My setup is relatively simple. We currently have DirecTV (two HR24 receivers) and 98% of everything on both DVRs is watched on a Samsung LN-T4053H. (I also have a Panasonic DMR-EZ27 DVD recorder there.) Am I correct in assuming that a Myth setup can play our 2% on the other TV with a low-end computer attached to it?

I have an uninstalled DB4 antenna as well. I have some questions about that for a later date/another thread.

Thanks for any pointers or clarifications.
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Old 29-Apr-2012, 11:17 PM   #23
signals unlimited
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That is a very cool way to set up antennas for the teckie!

I have been looking at similar equipment for my display. There is nothing I would rather eliminate than that evil rotor, however in my business location I receive from five markets. I just booked nine demo/installations this weekend at a show. Five of them dont even have a computer and the other 4 think cat 5 is one less than six. Realy! So unfortunatly I will be purchasing ten rotors on my next supply run. Nine to install and one to cover the DOA.

Thanks for sharing your ideas. They are very inovative.

Last edited by signals unlimited; 30-Apr-2012 at 12:45 AM.
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Old 30-Apr-2012, 5:07 AM   #24
GroundUrMast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SVTarHeel View Post
I'm thinking through the cable cutting process. At this point the leading contenders are a Myth HTPC and HDHomeRun. I ran across a new-in-the-box HDHR - it's white and has 2 plugs in the back. Is this like the 1st one(s) you have? Any reason to go for new new? Or is the dual input preferable in your mind?

Do you have your Myth box up and running? My Linux experience is limited although I have poked around the Mythbuntu site a bit.

My setup is relatively simple. We currently have DirecTV (two HR24 receivers) and 98% of everything on both DVRs is watched on a Samsung LN-T4053H. (I also have a Panasonic DMR-EZ27 DVD recorder there.) Am I correct in assuming that a Myth setup can play our 2% on the other TV with a low-end computer attached to it?

I have an uninstalled DB4 antenna as well. I have some questions about that for a later date/another thread.

Thanks for any pointers or clarifications.
As I mentioned previously, I own three of the white HDHR-Dual units and one HDHR3-US (black). I have seen no difference in tuner sensitivity. In my multi-antenna system, the white dual input unit offers the flexibility to connect different antenna sources to each tuner... so my nod goes to the older model.

I have a MythTV system running on a Zotac box... with some proprietary video/audio driver support issues remaining. I'm still in the learning curve. My XP box is still my reliable PVR/DVR. My best advise is to depend on the MythTV and Ubuntu forums for guidance on minimum hardware recommendations.

As much as I am biased toward open-source solutions, the industry is inclined toward proprietary systems. Netflix has implemented digital rights management security that is closed/proprietary and therefor has no support in Linux or any other open-source OS. Therefor, I am still using the WIN-7 or XP machines to access Netflix. EDIT: Many disk player include Internet media access functionality. Our new Sony BlueRay player has Netflix functionality included, so one more 'weak string' that held me captive to MS has been cut.
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Last edited by GroundUrMast; 18-Nov-2013 at 11:14 PM.
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Old 30-Apr-2012, 5:11 AM   #25
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@signals unlimited, You're absolutely correct, there is a limited group that would find this solution easy to understand and implement.
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Old 24-Nov-2012, 3:02 PM   #26
channelguy
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GroundUrMast gives a really good explanation of the benefits of the HDHomeRun box with and without a separate antenna on each box. I have two of the new HDHR3 units -- one Dual and one Tech -- fed from one attic antenna thru a splitter. I bought the Tech model at reduced price from Adorama.

He also mentions "I like the signal quality metering that is provided with the utility software, it reports relative signal strength, signal quality and symbol quality. Not as good as a pro-grade ATSC signal analyzer but a step or two above any other consumer equipment signal indication."

I thought I'd point out that the Tech model has some really nice engineering-ish features. For example, even the simple display in the Config program shows more than just the "percentage" data. The Dual version is on the left, and the Tech version is on the right (Win7 version):

both-w7.png

Note the signal strength is shown in dBmV -- for this station it's 23 dBmV, or more than 14000 microvolts. The Signal Quality of 31.1 dB is, I assume, a Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR). Note, too, the "Plot" button at the right in the Tech version. It plots what they call a "constellation" although I think it's more a histogram than a classic ATSC constellation. On a cable signal the Tech version does plot a true QAM constellation.

The Tech Config User Manual shows many other screens with a wealth of info. It's a very useful unit especially if you like to get at many details of the signal. I run both of my HDHR boxes with eyeTV on a Mac, although I often use a Win7 laptop.

Last edited by channelguy; 24-Nov-2012 at 3:53 PM.
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Old 18-Nov-2013, 5:44 PM   #27
GroundUrMast
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Linux Script

Here is a script that works well on a basic Linux box. The function is similar to the Windows batch file in post #5, giving you the function of a PVR/DVR. Edit variable values as needed.

Note that this script also adds tuner locking. This prevents another user, script or application from interrupting the tuner while it's recording. The lock key is the recording time stamp variable, so it's not impossible to override the lock if the need arises.

Use "cron" or "at" to launch the script at the correct time.

Code:
#!/bin/bash
#
#Virtual Channel
VC=5.1

#Real Channel
RCH=48

#Transport Stream Program Number
PROG=3

#Run Time - minutes
RUN_TIME=32

#Recording File Title
TITLE=Test_Recording

#Select Tuner by 'uncommenting' one Tuner
#TUNER=1019D817
#TUNER=101A5A4B
#TUNER=101AE560
TUNER=1032E7DB

#Specify Sub-Tuner, 'tuner0' or 'tuner1'
SUBT=tuner0

#Recording Time Stamp
REC_TS=$(date +"%Y%m%d%H%M")

hdhomerun_config ${TUNER} set /${SUBT}/lockkey ${REC_TS}
hdhomerun_config ${TUNER} key ${REC_TS} set /${SUBT}/channel auto:${RCH}
hdhomerun_config ${TUNER} key ${REC_TS} set /${SUBT}/program ${PROG}
hdhomerun_config ${TUNER} key ${REC_TS} save /${SUBT} /home/tom/Videos/${TITLE}_${REC_TS}.mpg &
HDHR_PID=$!

sleep ${RUN_TIME}m

hdhomerun_config ${TUNER} key ${REC_TS} set /${SUBT}/channel none
hdhomerun_config ${TUNER} key ${REC_TS} set /${SUBT}/lockkey none

kill $HDHR_PID

exit

# Schedule using "at HH:MM MMDDYYYY -f /home/<user_name>/bin/<script_name>
# or use crontab
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Last edited by GroundUrMast; 7-Jan-2014 at 5:07 AM. Reason: updated script code
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Old 9-Jan-2014, 10:04 PM   #28
GroundUrMast
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Several new products are now being offered by Silicon Dust. The HDHR Plus appears intriguing. http://www.silicondust.com/products/...run/hdhomerun/

The ability to trans-code MPEG-2 to H.264 makes streaming to WiFi connected phones, tablets and pads easy and practical. Even remote site antenna & tuner situations become more practical, given the reduction in bandwidth required.
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If the well is dry and you don't see rain on the horizon, you'll need to dig the hole deeper. (A fancy pump won't make a dry hole wet.)

Last edited by GroundUrMast; 11-Jan-2014 at 11:11 PM. Reason: sp.
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