[mythtv-users] Optimum encoding for remote mythtv

Timothy Weaver Timothy.Weaver at at.redbull.com
Wed May 12 09:02:02 EDT 2004

About nine months ago, I setup a mythtv box. Using Jarod's instructions, I
had no difficulty setting up mythtv running on Red Hat 9.0 using a P4 2.5
GHz, 512MB of RAM and a PVR-250.

The purpose was nothing short of survival. I currently live in Europe but
setup the box at a friend's house in the USA so that I could record and
download my favorite TV shows (How could I live without Curb Your
Enthusiasm?). This has worked just fine. The only downside is that, even
with my friend's "business" cable connection that provides about 40kbps
upstream, downloading a 30 minute show is about 3-4 hours using my current
encoding profile settings.

Those settings are currently 720x480 with a max bitrate of 3000 and audio
at 48000 and 96k. There is only an analog cable input to the PVR-250, so I
am sure those settings are overkill and are making the files larger than
they need to be for the quality I would find acceptable.

My question is can someone suggest better settings? Obviously, I can test a
variety of encoding settings but it's not so painless because I then have
to download the file before visually inspecting it.

Currently, my idea is to drop the resolution to NTSC level (approx 352x525)
while leaving the max bitrate at 3000. Am I heading in the right direction
with this change?

Also, I would like to define the Low Quality profile for recording animated
shows like The Simpsons or South Park. Any ideas what settings I should use
for that?

Should I look at transcoding to something other than MPEG files? If so,
what? I know I cannot yet use the commercial cut functionality on MPEG
files, so that will have to wait.

All help, advice, feedback, criticisms, and monetary donations are

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