[mythtv-users] Looking for your experience

John P. Mitchell john at cepros.com
Fri Sep 3 18:34:52 EDT 2004


   I have built two mythtv frontend/backend combo machines and have had
little trouble setting them up other than with ALSA. I could never get
my mixer settings to stay through a reboot with ALSA. I just use OSS
and the mixer settings all works fine.
   One machine is a Shuttle SK41G/AMD Athlon XP 2400+/512MB RAM/GeForce 2
GTS/Bt848 based machine and another is an nForce 400/AMD Athlon XP
2000+/512MB RAM/Integrated GeForce 4 MX/Bt878 based machine and both
work fine. I had little trouble setting them up by using the following
guide: http://wilsonet.com/mythtv/ .
   I have had little trouble with Fedora Core 1 but it seems like others
have had lots of trouble with Fedora Core 2. One other note is that I
use the stock Fedora Core 1 kernel, I do not use a third party
"optimized" kernel. I tried several third party kernels and they all
gave me grief. I have also had good luck compiling a vanilla kernel
from kernel.org, although I am not using a vanilla kernel currently on
either box.
   On the encoding side I am using the following settings for live tv and
all of my recording and the quality is decent in my opinion. These
settings result in about 1GB of disk consumed per hour of TV recorded.
After cutting commercials I usually get a 700MB or so file that fits
nicely on a CD. These settings let me record tv while watching
previously recorded tv without any issues:
   Resolution: 640x480
   Codec: MPEG4
   Bitrate: 2200
   Max Quality: 2
   Min Quality: 15
   Max quality difference: 3
   Scale bitrate for frame size: checked
   Codec: MP3
   Sampling Rate: 32000
  MP3 Quality: 3
The only issue I have is with exporting recorded material out of MythTV
into another format that I can watch on my laptop on the go or on another
machine that does not have MythTV installed. I currently use nuvexport to
export my recorded material into a format that Video LAN Client, standard
mplayer, or Windows Media Player can handle. The issue is that it takes a
LONG time to export the material. Currently it is about twice as long as
the material is. So if it is an hour show, it takes two hours to export.
Very lame, and VERY CPU intensive on the Myth box, but is the only way as
far as I can tell from the list and all the things I have tried.
   Hope this helps and please feel free to email me direct with questions
or what not. I like in Alaska (be aware of the time difference), have a
normal eight to five job during the week, and church on weekends.
Normally it will take a day or two for me to get back to you, but I
will reply.

>> Hey all,
>> I must first admit, I am a newbie to MythTV,
>> although that's not my
>> reason for this.  I'm going to use you all for your
>> experience in
>> dealing with the hardware side of this...
>> Anyway, I'm looking for some advice on the *BEST*
>> hardware setup...
>> the cost isn't that much of an issue....
> Just to forewarn you: you'll run into *lots* of
> problems. I have an almost-working setup and you
> wouldn't believe how much stupid problems I've
> encountered just to get this far.
>> Current Plan->
>> TV-in: PVR-250
>> TV-out: No clue...I have an All-in-wonder so I need
>> to buy a new one
> apparently GeForce MX is very popular. I have a spare
> old ATI card that I want to try first.
>> Processor: Most likely AMD 2000-3000 or something
> I have 2400XP
>> Case/Mobo/Form Factor: Anyone research this and find
>> something really
>> cool that's not a Shuttle (too expensive for what
>> you get)?
> Ah, yeah :-) That's what I'll be getting:
> http://www.antec.com/us/productDetails.php?ProdID=15728
>> Hard Drives: How much, how snappy? I'll probably be
>> recording about
>> 1-2hours a day and deleting it after I watch
> dunno. I guess I'll end up setting up a RAID at some
> point. But start small. You don't need a lot of I/O
> speed. PVR-250 outputs already-compressed mpeg2 stream
> at max rate of 12Mbits/s (that's 1.5MB/s). But you'll
> probably want to set the bitrate at much less than
> that.
>> Sound Card: I'm assuming Audigy 2 Platinum, anything
>> better?
> what's wrong with on-board sound? Mine does 5.1 for an
> extra cost of $0.
>> DVD-ROM: How fast to emulate a store bought DVD
>> player?
> uhhm, 1x. (i.e. anything will do)
> hope this helps,
> Eugene
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    John P. Mitchell <john at cepros.com>
    Email Sticker: My Boss is a Jewish carpenter
    http://www.GoboLinux.org | User #00010110

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